01 April, 2011

Polyvalent 700

These past few days we've been tweaking the plans for the 700c version of the Polyvalent that we hope to introduce next year. A second prototype should be in the works soon with some small improvements and one rather major change.

First the easy stuff, this new frame has geometry that's a bit more touring oriented than the 650b version. That means slightly longer chain stays, a slightly shorter top tube, and full rack braze-ons front and rear. It will also probably have vertical drop-outs We are still discussing the final geometry and little details such as behind-the-seat-tube pump pegs and a kickstand plate.

 The bigger change is one I've wanted to experiment with for many years. As you know, our designs are inspired by the French constructeur bikes, which I believe were the pinnacle of classic bicycle design. What you may not know is that there were several great constructeurs who worked not in steel but in Dural  (or aluminum alloy). Perhaps the most famous of these was Pierre Caminade, who created fantastic touring, rando, and city bikes from lugged aluminum tubing. His bikes have a reputation for a silky smooth ride. Joel Metz's Blackbird site has a great section on Caminade's bikes and components.

Since the Polyvalent is supposed to be an economical frame, we won't try to duplicate the alloy lugs. It will be TIG welded frame like the 650b version. But we have found a source for the traditional octagonal Dural tubing which should look fantastic when polished. We may also do matching octagonal seat posts and head sets.

28 comments:

Winga said...

I thought the idea of steel touring frames is that they are easy to weld in a pinch should something happen.

jugdish said...

Can I get this with carbon forks, preferably with no rake?

Kevin Cartwright said...

Best April Fools joke of the day!

Anonymous said...

Don't do this ...

Eric said...

I hope they'll have titanium bolts to shave a few grams.

Anonymous said...

Not into it at all. I would like to see a serious 650B touring frameset that a family guy can afford. I own many of you products and love my 63CM rando frameset. I would love to be able to take it the next step with a 63 or better yet a 65cm 650B bike fully equipped with fenders dynamo,lights, racks with a 650b wheelset supporting 41mm to 44mm tires etc..

BTW can't wait to try my new V-O Dynamo with the clutch.

Greg in Wausau

Anonymous said...

Maybe you could create economical lugs out of bamboo? Just a thought.

Looking forward to the actual 700c PV when it happens.

Dan

Anonymous said...

Hahahaha... no morning coffee yet, you got me. :)

Yogurt said...

I've read that components made of dural have a poor corrosion resistance. There must be a reason dural isn't used for frame building nowadays. I'd be worried about the longevity of the frame.

Although I like the idea of 700c touring bike. I think there are already many 700c bikes available. I say keep it 650b.

JB said...

I think it's a fantastic idea.

The 650B Polyvalent fills a real gap, but there are many options for a steel 700C touring (or touring-ish) frame. Granted, the pump peg and kickstand plate would be an improvement over a LHT, but I'd love to see something truly different: Bring on the duraluminum!

(I recognize that your post is probably a joke. My comment is totally serious.)

Anonymous said...

Why do I always fall for these things?

I'm anonymous who said "don't do this ..."

BrotherTrucker said...

And what better steering accoutrement than really carbon fiber rando bars and ultralight v-brakes. Anodized black with a travel agent of course.

Anonymous said...

No octagonal headset? It would do wonders for shimmy.

Ramses said...

I think it would also help in marketting if we called it 650DD (as in "650 Double D"). Sure, it sounds like a bra size, but at least we know from the name that it's a hip and large (all things 650x are hip) and it's Double D (all things double D are large).

Keith Hearn said...

Ah yes, an octagonal headset. For those who really enjoy indexed steering. :)

Anonymous said...

I had the real Caminade tourer. It was lightning quick in its day. Once the Ironman fad hit a few years back, I had the fastest fendered TT bike in the tristate area. I now believe that such performance enhancing machines should be banned from amateur criteriums/randos/timetrials/cyclocross/and gonzo-commuting!

John Ellsworth said...

Octagonal headset. Sweet!

Anonymous said...

Ooohhh, nice! How about braze-ons for mounting an electric assist too?

Kilroy said...

Greetings,

I think a "do-it-yourself" Velo Orange frame kit would be a great idea. You could include the lugs, tubing, decals, file, a small saw and detailed instructions. It undoubtedly would be inexpensive and what a great way to spend a weekend. And being aluminum, very easy to cut. And for those who cut too short.....replacement tubes, exclusively from V.O. The "VOA", or Velo Orange ALumina frame would take over the industry and put frame builders out of business.

This could be problematic for Velo Orange. You would need yet a new warehouse, your stock would go public and you would have to look into getting a financial consultant.

Best regards

Anonymous said...

I heartily approve!

You should sell complete bikes with Real MAN saddles: http://sheldonbrown.com/real-man.html

Steve Mattson said...

Intervention time.

Anonymous said...

That sucker would plane like a Chris Craft!

Anonymous said...

When will the 650b Polyvalent be back in sizes smaller than 60CM be back in stock again? Will it have changes from the last batch of frames and if so, what might those changes be?

etherhuffer said...

So, this model will be called the Chris Crafted? Does it come with a well kept 40ish French lady to bring me a warm croissant or other nice warm things? C'est la Vie!
Since I am a real devil can I get a special order model with pentagonal tubing and 666d wheels? It would be a real hit in Avignon!

Karl said...

I know you're not serious about some of this but also hope that you are not serious about vertical dropouts for the 700c Polyvalent.

I would like a 700c bike for commuting and for a more upright position than my two drop-bar bikes provide. I'm not certain if I will go with derailleur or internal hub and perhaps even imternal-gear, roadster style - a poor man's A.N.T.

Either way, horizontal dopouts wpuld be my preference.

Anonymous said...

I think you should make a hexagonal handlebar as well, so you can drive it like a Trucker on the long haul.

Andrew said...

Goodness! I know how politicians can get elected.

What a great party trick! What a willing school of fish!

Anonymous said...

1. I think you should offer a frame with the octogonal tubing. Whiel someone who is purely into performance might not be into this, those who are into DESIGN might be. It's beautiful.

2. Likewise, I WOULD consider making the lugs available. If you are into the design, than don't adulterate it.