Expanding bike frames
BEN COXWORTH extends his reach on frames from Hickman and Brooklyness
TWO bike frames from opposite ends of the Atlantic displayed frames that promise to fit all human body shapes at the recent North American Handmade Bicycle Show in San Francisco.
From the UK, frame- builder Mike Hickman created the Hickman Bike, which Hickman says will fit any rider off the shelf, and will also be able to adapt to different types of riding.
Sections of the frame telescope or pivot over a wide range and the handlebars move forwards or backwards.
Only the head tube angle, chainstay length and bottom bracket drop cannot adjust.
The frame is made from TIG-welded chromoly steel. Hickman is asking £ 2 000 ( over R43 000) for a frame, without wheels or saddle.
In the U. S., New York Citybased Brooklyness built a Universal Bike for the one- frame fits all solution.
When they first get the bike, riders start by entering their height and weight, along with the length of their legs, arms and torso, on the Universal Bike app.
They can also select their desired ride style, from a list that includes road, touring, urban, fixie, comfort, pista and hybrid.
The app responds by displaying the numbers that the bike’s frame length, seat height, seat angle, handlebar height and fork angle should be set to.
The bike itself features a carbon fibre frame and fork, 24inch wheels, and the buyer’s choice of a Shimano Nexus rear hub transmission ( in three or seven speeds) or a single- speed/ fixie configuration. The make of most of the other components is unspecified at this point.
The whole thing weighs a claimed 6,8 kg as a single- speed, or 8,6 kg with the Nexus hub.
Brooklyness is currently raising production funds for the Universal Bike on Kickstarter. Assuming the financial goal is met and things go according to plan, a pledge of U. S.$ 895 ( over R13 600) will get you a singlespeed, with $ 1 195 for a threespeed and $ 1 695 ( over R25 800 for a seven- speed.
TOP: The British- built frame from Mikle Hickman visibly extends horizontally and vertically, while the American take on this idea ( right) from Brooklyness hides all the extensions in a carbon fibre frame.