14 June, 2012

Chainguards Part 1

Here is the new Grand Cru Plume Alaire chainguard. Back in the day there were dozens of companies making elegant chainguards in dozens of patterns. They kept one's trouser cuffs presentable and added a bit of style to even the most pedestrian city bike. Have a look at this post, called Chainguards as Art.

You might notice I wrote, in 2007, that VO should start working on an elegant chain guard. These things take time. Actually we already have the Porteur Chaincase and VO Alloy Chainguard. We also made this prototype simple chain guard that may return next year.

We should have them in stock by late summer.

32 comments:

minisystem said...

Bonkers! Love it.

Calvert said...

Outstanding! I want one.

Janice in GA said...

That's STUNNING!

Velouria said...

Fantastic indeed, so happy to see this!

Any chance you will make one that can work with a front derailleur in future?

Josh said...

Finally! A classically styled yet minimally designed chaingaurd with graceful lines and a finish that doesn't draw the wrong kind of attention. Nice work, VO. I'll be back for my upcoming Porteur build.

One question, is the "Grand Cru" logo etched or painted?

Anonymous said...

Holy crap. You did it!

Anonymous said...

The ornate curves and cutouts are beautiful but the branding seems very much overscaled and out of proportion.

VeloOrange said...

We are working on a version compatible with a front derailleur, but there is a lot of development and testing required so it'll take a while.

The design is etched.

Velouria said...

"We are working on a version compatible with a front derailleur, but there is a lot of development and testing required"

That is awesome, awesome, awesome! If you need testing, that can be arranged : ))

Anonymous said...

How about one with an integrated chain keeper (for single chainring setups)?

Should be in Bed, he's rambling said...

Beautiful

Cycle Jerk said...

That's the most tasteful and elegant way to flip someone the bird I've ever seen. Well done! Seriously, that is beautiful.

Anonymous said...

Bravo!

Anonymous said...

Agreed with 12:47. Beautiful, but the big logo makes it a no-go for me.

somervillain said...

Beautiful! I love it.

Was it accepted practive for French bikes with 50.4BCD cranks and a chain guard to have the chainring bolted to the inner face of the crank spider? I've only noticed this on a couple of French bikes. When the chainring is mounted "normally", the clearance between the chainring and crank arm is normally so tight that it makes it close to impossible to mount a chain guard without rubbing issues.

I'm considering moving the chainring to the inside face on my TA crankset to solve this problem. I'm getting rub between the chain, guard and crank arm:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/7516215@N03/6938051480

kingfisherpainting said...

tres bein mon ami!

Eric said...

Gorgeous. Now how about a chain guard designed for bikes with front derailleurs?

I'm frustrated by the lack of availability of such things in the U.S. -- and worse, the claim by everyone bike shop guy I've talked to that it 'can't be done'. Bikes with triples and chain guards are all over Vienna, Copenhagen, etc. etc. last time I checked.

dwainedibbly said...

I like it, but agree that a smaller logo would be better.

Interesting about mounting the chainring that way. The 50.4 cranks certainly do have narrow spacing between the crankarm & the chain ring, and this would solve it, but you might need a longer bottom bracket spindle to keep the chainline reasonable & to keep the chainring form rubbing the chainstay. I may give it a try on my Polyvalent with Nervar crank & vintage French chain guard.

Noah said...

I was eagerly awaiting this chainguard and had high hopes. The shape and cutouts are quite pretty but I am a bit put off by the etching and logos.If they were stamped or less noticeable I'd be thrilled but in the current look I think the branding makes it a no go for me.

Anonymous said...

Re: Somervillain
Have fitted a VO Polished Chainguard with a set of VO 50.4 single ring cranks and the clearances are very tight but then I expected this with that style crank - it took some time to set up perfectly and there is only 2mm clearance at best between crank, guard, ring and chain but it hasn't moved since setting up and there's something satisfying about it working in close harmony. I think you should peservere with what you already have :)

Mark Manson said...

Very nice. I especially like the thought that went into the frame clamps.

fmackay said...

Really nice, apart from the massively oversized logo. How about getting some un-etched ones, to save me polishing it off?

VeloOrange said...

The large logo on this chainguard follows a certain style of chainguard that I happen to love. Many companies made guards with their logos as part of the design and it was considered fashionable.

If you don't like this style then don't buy it; we already have plans to make another, minimal-logo, chainguard next year. The etching is super easy to change and we may change it every year, peace sign, yin and yang, French rooster, sunflower... But this is the design I wanted for my bike so it gets made first ;<)

fmackay said...

I get that this is a near-clone of a classic chainguard, which had a whopping big CLB logo. But that was stamped, not laser-etched, and the aesthetic is quite different. I think that to best replicate the aesthetic of the original, you should drop the rings and the Grand Cru crest and just have the VO logo, big enough to fill the circle - stamped or engraved, or possibly cut-out.

Anonymous said...

You have done an excellent job in recreating the chain guard, it is beautiful! However I do agree with fmackay, to my eye all you need is the letters "VO" and maybe the branches and maybe a circle or two. There is something about the "grand cru" font that looks modern when the chain guard is so old fashioned looking...It doesn't quite mesh right.

Keith Krome said...

Beautiful. I have mixed feelings about the branding, but if you offer a non-branded version then everyone can be satisfied (for this model chainguard). You guys have every right to be proud of your components, so do what you please I suppose, but I prefer subtlety, and to your credit, you guys can be subtile, but it is a matter up personal taste in the end.

Any heads up on ballpark pricing?

Paul Krueger said...

Awesome chainguard!

I'm having a custom bike built right now and would love to have this chainguard installed as a direct bolt-on (as opposed to using clamps).

Is there any way you could send along the dimensions so that my builder could integrate it right into the bike?

I was going to use the Civia Bryant chainguard but yours is way cooler.

Anonymous said...

I'm with fmackay. While I totally appreciate this chainguard, and I know this is a nit, the engraved / etched logo just looks all wrong to me. I have no issue with the size of the logo - I just think the way its implemented clashes with the overall aesthetic of the chainguard.

rgc said...

I never cared for a chain guard on my bike regardless of the fact it serves a purpose, until that is, I saw this one. It is just totally cool!

Ford said...

For those with the VO logo problem, find or make a round sticker to cover it. Alternately, mill out the circle or screw a classic head badge on over it. Get creative!

SPACE RIDER GAL ~**~ LA CHICA DE LA SPACE RIDER said...

How can I pre-order one?

Curtis Odom said...

This chainguard has very strong vintage design DNA and has remained faithful to the original including the size and location of the branding. Great work.
Curtis