23 October, 2017

Polyvalent Updates and Builds for Philly Bike Expo

by Igor

Since we last posted about the Polyvalent, there have been a few tweaks to the frame and fork toolings - all of which allows for better geometry, handling, and clearances. Going forward, the hardest part is choosing the frame color.


The rear chainstays now have elegant S-bends to engulf big rubber and fenders. The dimpling allows the use of low-Q cranks like our 50.4 (149mm of tread) without the need for bottom bracket spacers. Though the frame is designed around a 650b tire, it clears a 26 x 2.3" tire with ease. 26 x 2.25 knobbies are no problem for those wanting to go the route untraveled.


Previous models had a 31.8mm top tube to provide extra support and stiffness for loads which made the ride a wee bit harsh. For this iteration, we've ovalized the top tube for stiffness and compliance in all the right places. Additionally, shouldering the bike up stairs or over obstacles is not uncomfortable. I don't bring a clipboard and stopwatch with me on rides but the ol' butt-dyno says it climbs nicely with a load in the front or rear, and equally well unburdened.

The fork is a completely custom, segmented design that allows us to create the ride characteristics we want without sacrificing the strength or durability the inclusion of disc brakes requires. The result is a comfortable ride, utility in droves, and an exceptional presentation from all angles.


The blades have a circular profile and are double-butted. There are triple braze-ons with diamond reinforcements with the lowest one doubling as a low-rider rack mount. There is also a forward facing hourglass eyelet to which the Randonneur or Campeur Racks mount. The dropouts have a single brazed-on eyelet underneath for fender mounting and an hourglass eyelet on top for a rack.


I can't think of a better way to blend traditional and contemporary design and styling than this 51cm Randonneur.


The paintjob has a light, red metallic flake clearcoat over a white pearlescent paint. From afar, the bike looks white, but upon close inspection the mingling of pearl and red flakes makes a lustrous depth to the paint.

I really like the design of these new decals. They have an outline of VeloORANGE, rather than our regular filled-in variant, so the paint shows through. What do you think?


We have also been teasing a drop handlebar with moderate flair, an ovalized top section, slight backsweep, and 31.8mm clamp diameter we're calling the Nouveau Rando Handlebar. It has instantly become a favorite of mine and will go into production soon.


This 54cm Polyvalent in Porteur mode has a Deep Metallic Emerald Green paintjob. It does a fantastic job of making all of the braze-ons and details pop while still keeping composure.


I really like the component combination on this one - Suntour Sprint rear derailleur, FSA circa 2007 front derailleur, Drillium Crankset, and Falcon Thumbies to make it all work.


This bike is also sporting a proto handlebar: the Curvy One Bar. It's a handlebar which looks right on just about any build. It's​ great for city and touring bikes, and it's mountain rated for offroad roughing.

We'll also have a Curvy Too bar that has a bit of rise and backsweep for a more upright position.


Both of these bikes will be on display at the upcoming Philly Bike Expo, so be sure to mark your calendars.

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53 comments:

Anonymous said...

When will these be available for purchase? Beautiful looking multi function bikes.

david brazell said...

Get 'em nailed down and in stock, I don't care what color you settle on, I'm gonna want a 58cm for my next build.

VeloOrange said...

@Anon,

They'll be here in time for Spring. We'll probably try to do a pre-order, so keep your eyes peeled.

-Igor

brian said...

Huzzah! Now I'm that much closer to knowing what my next bike will look like and when I can get it...

Both colors look great, but I'm pulling for green.

Anonymous said...

Oh man this frame looks great, but it really needs through axles.

Anonymous said...

Looks sweet! How wide are those Curvy bars?

VeloOrange said...

@ anon 12:54- the bars are 680 mm wide.
Scott

Winston said...

Looks super sweet and very well thought out. A+.
I think my touring bike needs are officially filled for a little while, but I hope these sell like hotcakes so if I ever feel the need to go disc they will be around!

Anonymous said...

GGGRRREEENNN!!! I hope you guys heard that, If it fits 650b x 2" and I can get a GREEN one in 58c with curvy too bars. As soon ad I know complete geometryI'll pre-order in a heartbeat.

Mike the Bike PT said...

I'm split between the green and the white. If it were more of a Shamrock green, I would start figuring out what I could sell to be able to afford a frame!

Anonymous said...

Curious what happened to blue. I thought that decision had already been made, admittedly by Chris, the former owner. I thought that was a good choice. Between white and green, I'd strongly recommend white. With the new decal design it gives a look of high quality, which is really exciting to me. It reminds me of the classic Schwinn Paramount, which looked great in white. The green, by contrast, looks cheap to me, and is an excitement suppressor. This is said by someone who has been riding a green bike enthusiastically for eight years. Much depends on the type of green. Apologies to all the green enthusiasts. Bike aesthetics, for me, are a major part of the total experience. Loved the old Polyvalent in blue and also the previous green. I'll buy it, however you paint it. Also, appreciate the reduction of top tube diameter.

Jan Kreuels said...

I love the color of both of the polyvalent prototypes that you took to Europe this summer. Please, please keep these colours, especially the blue paint!

Jan Kreuels said...

I loved the colors of both of the prototypes that you took to Europe this summer. Please, please keep the blue paint!

Anonymous said...

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

A great looking workhorse!

VeloOrange said...

@Anon 2:33pm,

The metallic blue is still in the running! Paint is so subjective and it isn't something we take lightly at all. The nice thing is that powder coating or repainting is incredibly reasonable nowadays, especially when the frame is brand new and there isn't any repair work that needs to be done.

-Igor

Anonymous said...

A vote for white! Cool bike. Looking forward to full specs. Would also love to hearing about how tubing compares to some of your other offerings.

-=- * -=- said...

what is the offset and/or trail of the fork?

hagri777 said...

So will it fit 650x2.35?
And Curvy bars look a lot like these, http://sim-works.com/en/nitto/getaround-bar, what is the difference?

Anonymous said...

It's not truly multipurpose if you can't run a fixed wheel. Will you ever make another bike with horizontal dropouts and canti studs?

giant hogweed said...

I vote for the white

Donald said...

The blue is particularly timeless and harmonious, really a handsome shade. Green tends to get dated quickly, although this is a nice cheerful shade differentiated enough from foliage. I used to have a white bike; it was a nice alternative neutral but showed every scuff. The point about the ease of powder coating is fair enough; at the price of a VO frame, if you are dead set on a color, go ahead and fork over an extra $100 to a powder coat outfit and get exactly the color and finish you want. I could see myself going that route. This is a frame that will be able to withstand multiple builds over the course of its long life and retain its ride quality. Pretty delightful prospect.

Andy Squirrel said...

So close to being a decent bike that I'd recommend to a friend.
Can't wait until VO moves past threaded headsets and embraces this newfangled threadless technology!

VeloOrange said...

@Anon 4:04pm,

We may in the future, but we only have so much warehouse space!

@hagri777,

Haven't tried that combo in particular. For that size, it would be better suited to 26" wheels.

The Curvy Bars are quite different! The Curvys are made out of aluminum alloy, they have a 31.8mm clamp diameter, no rise, and are a tad bit narrower.

-Igor

dirt dropped said...

Interested in the tubing specs! Any details?

Big Woods Biker said...

Love the green!

Dave Small said...

I love the metallic blue I've seen pictures of before. Second choice is the green. I thought I'd like a white bike, but the outline-only graphics are too subtle, in my opinion.

Re the comment above about threadless: That's a deal killer for me. I've had 4 threadless bikes and they've eventually limited me to the point that I sold them. I want the adjustability of a threaded system, and won't buy a bike that doesn't provide it. To those who want threadless there are 10,348 options out there; those who want threaded have only a handful.

Anonymous said...

Nice frames. But isn't there a problem of toe overlap for the white in 51 (see middle pic) ? Sizing small, it's a problem I often get.

Cary Weitzman said...

Where did the metallic frost blue colour go? That was very classy. That metallic rust was also sharp. I can take or leave the white, it doesn't really do anything for me, but I don't dislike it, though I would prefer an off-white or cream.

Really, any colour but that green. Something about that green just screams "cheap department store bike" to me. Not sure why, maybe it's the sheen of that particular shade.

If you've ovalized the top tube so that it's flattened vertically, won't that serve to increase lateral stiffness, which is what you're trying to reduce to create less harsh ride. Some flex is good!

VeloOrange said...

@Anon 2:20am,

There is some toe overlap, but it isn't that bad.

@Cary Weitzman,

The blue is still in the running, we simply didn't get it again since we know what the color looks like. The ovalizing of the top tube is more to improve sure-footedness when standing out of the saddle with a significant rear load. Otherwise, it rides perfectly normally with little or no load.

-Igor

Eric said...

This is great! I'd love a threadless fork!

R Webb said...

This looks absolutely perfect! Excellent work. The green is beautiful. I would definitely order one of these frames if you're to be making one in 58cm? Is this case?

Winston said...

Perhaps this is the opportunity to make 46 cm model for 26 inch wheels that's got a sub 51cm top tube, give the old LHT a run for it's money. You've got to do it eventually.

VeloOrange said...

@R Webb,

The sizing will go 51, 54, 57, & 60. A nice spread that makes it easy to figure out which size you'd need.

-Igor

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if the frame and fork might clear Surly Extraterrestrial 26x2.5 tires.

Sophie said...

Same question.

Anonymous said...

Love the bike but the combo of a threaded fork and disc brakes kill it for me. I would have purchased threadless/dis or threaded/canti.

VeloOrange said...

Trail with 650bx47mm tires is the answer to life, the universe, and everything: 42.

@Anon 7:25pm,

Those tires won't fit in this frame, but they will in the Piolet!

-Igor

Anonymous said...

Please just get these IN!!! I prefer the green, BUT I am so desperate for one of these I'll take it in whatever color it comes in! This is basically THE bike that made VO and you've been out of them FOREVER; Even when you had them before you didn't have my size! They never come up on Ebay, so used isn't an option either. In the time it's taken to re-design these you could have blasted out another run of the previous design and sold out of those already! It's good not to rush things, but people are waiting for these! - masmojo

Sax Huret said...

The outline logo on the white frame is something I'd like to see again. Can't say the same about white paint on a "do anything" frame, however.

Anonymous said...

Nice! But disc brakes only (?) will kill it for me.

Anonymous said...

Honestly, I think there's some pent up demand here; You could probably release them in 2 or 3 colors and still sell them all. - masmojo

Anonymous said...

What will be the largest frame size?

The green?! That's the color of a suit that only a drunken leprechaun would wear. I vote for for the metallic blue from the previous MKIV prototype. I think it would be good to revisit the thinking process VO got rid of the British Racing Green colour on the PV MKII and went with the nicer dark metallic blue on the PV MKIII.

Beau said...

I love all these responses. People obviously feel very passionate about the Polyvalent. It also shows you can't please everyone.

For my two cents I would say the blue is far superior. The green is ok, but white bikes are only white for about five minutes. After a year of commuting or touring it's going to look pretty rough.

The compromise I would suggest is having a few forks available with threadless steer tubes for those that want to switch. It would be easy to include them in the manufacturing and from the looks of this thread, you would be guaranteed to sell them.

Like I said, just my two cents.

doug said...

I love the addition of the Suntour rear derailleur! The frame is coming along nicely with some really good touches. I agree there is a demand there. I also agree though that some of us like our Long reach centerpulls...

Anonymous said...

I didn't have a problem with the threaded steerer/quill stem when it was a cast crown fork, but if you are going to a segmented fork, I hardly see the point? Especially these days with the larger 31.8 handlebars starting to proliferate. Better to go 1 1/8" now and be done with it. - masmojo

Predictable Middle-age Retrogrouch said...

Re: threaded v threadless, it is easy enough to use one of those quill adapters. The weight penalty is only of concern for people who would't be interested in this frame anyway. VO offers 31.8 quill stems, so that is not a concern.

Re: blending traditional and modern, I would put in a plug for the Retroshift/Gevenalle-style shifters, also offered by IRD. Relatively recent in conception, yet feels like it has always been around, brilliant for rando/adventure applications, and very much in keeping with the VO gestalt. I prefer it strongly over bar-end shifting, at least for the rear derailleur.

dirt dropped said...

My vote goes for the powder blue! Seems so much more versatile to me... Black components, silver components, tan accents, white accents all seem to work well. White would check those boxes too but looks much more budget to me.

Anonymous said...

I‘m 6.3 tall and really looking forward to the larger frame sizes like 61,62. Please VO make it happen!

Ray Day said...

Sad to see the fork crown go, but very happy to see even more mounts! Are you gonna spec the geometry like the campeur?

Anonymous said...

Please make the polyvalent in a color other than white! The green is beautiful!

Paul Jacobson said...

Green is my vote. Although a little deeper and more saturated. I have a yellow bike right now, shows the dirt and grime so quickly, and even though I love a white bike they show the road grime.

Wheelin' Buzz said...

Really keen to see the numbers on this frame! Also interested how the disc brake testing has gone too.
My Surly Straggler has fat, high trail disc forks which still shudder a little at times, and has a fair bit of wheel flop with a front high load. Having lower trail, thinner forks would really make a difference, but I would imagine you can’t make the forks too thin otherwise the discs will cause havoc.
Also, what will be the top tube lengths? Will they be longer to cater for flat bar, or will you settle for shorter for drops, or something in between?
So many questions - I think you guys are onto an absolute winner!