14 July, 2006

The New Velo Orange Front Rack and Water Bottle


It fits bikes with cantis, sidepulls, centerpulls, or no brakes. It only weighs around 360 grams. The material is 1/4" 304 stainless steel tube. There are threaded bosses for lights on both sides and a proper fender mount. Plus, it's very very shiny. We'll post more photos later. What do you think?

On another subject, I've been looking for a nice modern the stainless steel water bottle for ages. Unlike plastic bottles there is no funky plastic taste from these, even the tops are non leaching. And the tops come in two styles, either a sports top or an old fashioned screw-in flat top. They hold 27 oz. and fit in a standard cage and will last a very long time. We'll even stock replacment tops. $14 in the store. The logo can be removed with metal polish. We'll also have the more traditional 18oz versions of these soon.

Did you know that reproductions of old metal French water bottles cost $160.00 in Japan, if you can get one.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

Chris, sign me one for one. Ron

C said...

Absolutely flawless! Can't think of a single detail to change. How much and when can I order one?

david_nj said...

How would this work on a bike without eyelets above the axle? I would say, for what it is, it's _exceptionally_ nice, but my humble personal preference would be for a rack which did not extend all the way down to the axle, but rather only had legs to the middle of the fork blade. If you're lucky, you have (or could get) lowrider bosses on your fork blades; if you're unlucky, you just call it a day and use P clamps.

Please don't get me wrong, it's a beautiful rack.

Chris Kulczycki said...

C,

Well the metal shop needs at least a week to tell me the price. Then we need a week for me to convince them the price is way too high. Then a week for all the tubing to arrive. Then two weeks for production. Then another week or two because the shop gets backed up. Got it?

David, I have a plan: use the same platform, but add a rod going to the fork about a foot below the crown. That rod would be solid, not a tube, so you could bend it for a perfect fit. As for time and price, please see above, but add three weeks for the prototype ;<)

Chris

C said...

The rack you want already exists courtesy of Rivendell/Nitto and Berthoud. I think Chris was smart to have it go all the way to the axle. Take a look at the forks out there. There are FAR more forks with eyelets at the dropouts than lowrider mounts. This allows more people to mount the rack without having to use ugly clamps and that was one of the design goals. The whole constructeur thing is about not needing ugly clamps. If I wanted a rack that mounted with ugly clamps I'd buy the Nitto/Riv rack.

Neil Berg said...

Looks nice. Tough to beat shiney. Are the "u" tubes capped at the rear or open? Curved rear corners might be more finished.

Chris Kulczycki said...

Neil,

Of course they are capped, what sort of outfit do you think we're running here? ;<) The hard thing about capping them is that when you weld the air inside expands and can blow the rack apart, but we do it anyway.

I thought about curves at the back, but that would be more expensive and move the whole rack forward.

david_nj said...

That might work Chris. You know what would be simply killer, and I don't think too too difficult, would be to figure out a way to bolt it into your centerpull brake pivot bolts. Obviously that flat tab on top would be of no moment. But if there were ears that extended downward on the rear straight piece, I think that'd do it. And it would be a most righteous setup.

patrick said...

i like the rack, esp because of the lack of ugly clamps. it'll be light enough to use without affecting the steering of my bike. I hope.

I have a kleen kanteen and like it (except the ugly logo). The big benefit over something like a SIGG bottle is that there is no liner, so that you can expose it to flame/put it on a stove if you want. it's a bit heavier than the SIGGs but worth it for that purpose.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chris
I like it, sign me up.

travis said...

I have been using those water bottles for a while, they are nice. By far the best thing going in the water bottle market.

Joe said...

Chris,

What a wonderful and useful looking rack. How do you envision a light (say, a Schmidt E6) mounting to it? Thanks for the hard work! -joe

Chris Kulczycki said...

Joe,

That's the idea behind the threaded mounts on both sides. You can use a flashlight mount on one side and a generator powered light on the other.

Chris

Megan Lynch said...

I bought one of those bottles at the Berkeley Farmer's Market to replace the plastic bottles I was using on my nightstand. I found myself wondering whether they'd fit in a bike bottle holder. I'm glad you found out!

Anonymous said...

Great price on those bottles - that's alot less than I've seen them for locally. How well does the sports top work?

Chris Kulczycki said...

The sports top works perfectly, except that it's hard to pull up the first few times. Since there is a separate air valve you can suck in big gulps of water if you want. The only down side to these bottles is that they are a tiny bit smaller than a plastic bottle so I squeeze my metal cages just a touch for a better fit.

aaronsnyder said...

Chris,
Totally beautiful!
But how can it not damp your fork flex (ie, stiffen the fork)? Have you ridden with the prototype?

Chris Kulczycki said...

Aaron,

It doesn't seem to dampen fork flex to any noticeable degree. I used 24 gauge stainless, pretty thin, for the top strut to allow plenty of flex. I was worried about this and studied a lot of constructeur racks. In the end I decided that if Herse kept building racks like this over and over then fork dampening must not be an issue, and it isn't. I'll post photos of the mounted rack in a few days.

Glenn Ammons said...

How does the tab on the back of the rack attach to the bike?

Regarding bikes without eyelets above the axle: here's how a Nitto rack mounts to eyelets below the axle. The "hoops" are longer and the tab sticks up instead of down from them. Maybe a variation of this rack could be made that way?

Chris Kulczycki said...

Glenn,

The tang at the back of the rack can go to the fender boss under the crown, if your bike has one. If you don't have a fender mount, it gets bent 90 degrees and attaches to the brake bolt.