With all of the chuffing that’s been going on over the years amongst road bike aficionados, who resent the ever-rising degree of carbon manufacturing that continues to be out-sourced to the Far-East, 3D-printing may very well bring that vocal gesture to an end.
As 3D-printing technology continues to progress, so does the onslaught of new and exciting ideas with regard to bicycle fabrication.
Indeed, what has been seen in the past as merely a bunch of exercises in bicycle prototyping and design, has now progressed to a level where we’re seeing fully functional production bicycles, which are exhibiting truly high performance capabilities.
A brand that appears to be extolling these virtues on the highest level, is the Australian based – Bastion Cycles.
“Our process combines advanced custom engineering, technology, material and craft, to achieve the ultimate in uncompromising performance.”
Using the latest in 3D-printing technology, combined with an artisan approach to carbon fabrication similar in ways to TIME Sport’s venerable RTM process (Resin Transfer Molding), Bastion Cycles is able to precisely control the carbon orientation of each tube, as well as the modulus, to exacting specifications.
“Our tube sections are wound layer by layer in carbon fiber over a mandrel in a computer controlled process called filament winding. This enables precise fibre orientation, continuous fiber paths, and higher fiber to resin ratios, giving you ultimate control of the performance characteristics of your bike.”
This technique combined with 3D-printed titanium lugs, which according Bastion Cycles, possess all of the strength and reliability of forged ones, further gives them the ability to fine tune the ride characteristics of each bike. But, perhaps equally important, their able to devise a frame based on the desired geometry, without being restricted by odd tube shapes and fussy molds.
“Our lugs are formed out of aerospace grade Titanium alloy powder. A specialised laser then fuses the powder to your exact specifications in a hermetically sealed, inert gas environment. The result is mechanical properties that rival those of forged parts.”
Bastion Cycles could very well be on to the next generation of bicycle fabrication, while also bringing back the long-lost element of homogeneity that once gave bikes a pedigree.
To learn more about Bation Cycles’ design, you can visit their website at Bastion Cycles.
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