We’ve still got a bunch of new product photos, news, and bike profiles from Interbike 2013, CrossVegas, China and Holy Week, so if you’re into cyclocross tech, check back regularly as we’re digging out this week. Today, we’ve got a close look at Van Dessel’s Aloominator bikes.
The Van Dessel van was out from New Jersey and ready for action at Outdoor Demo in Las Vegas few weeks ago, before heading back across the country to make sure that Mike Garrigan and Laura Van Gilder had her bikes and her mechanics ready to go for the Charm City in Baltimore and start of Holy Week in New England.
We had a look at the new Aloominator frame back in early September at Nittany and a preview at Dealer Camp, and Cyclocross Magazine recently reviewed the updated disc brake-adapted carbon Full Tilt Boogie cyclocross bike from Van Dessel in Issue 21, but the New Jersey-based bike company wasn’t finished finalizing their 2014 models at the time, and the bike we reviewed is already a collector’s item.
Van Dessel, thanks to a recent investment, has reset its lineup and focus and will step away from the carbon Full Tilt Boogie for a year and focus on an American-made aluminum frame with canti and disc options for 2014. We’ve got some photos of Edwin Bull’s personal Aloominator race bike here.
The Aloominator is crafted from USA-made high-end 6061 manipulated aluminum tubing and weighs in at around 1300 grams for a 56 cm frame with a cantilever setup. It features a tapered head tube, oval top tube, Press Fit BB30 bottom bracket shell, and comes in six sizes.
The Aloominator will also be available in a disc-only version with the new Easton EC90XD fork, or cantilever-only version with an Enve Composites fork. The frame’s finish is sandblasted and anodized dark grey. Zen Bicycle Fabrication will manufacture the frame, designed by Bull, in Portland, Oregon. The framesets will sell for $1599 and are available through any retailer.
They’re so new that they’re not even on the company’s website, but racers are making the transition from carbon to aluminum as the new frames come in.
Bull told Cyclocross Magazine that after quite a bit of personal experimenting with discs, he’s back to racing cantilevers, and intends to keep cantis as an option for racers for the near future, especially since canti-equipped racers like Nash, Albert and Nys keep winning. Stocking two versions of frames certainly adds complexity, but being able to work a with a domestic builder has given him the flexibility to order smaller batches and tweak designs faster.
The Aloominator is just one example of a renaissance of high-end aluminum frames, as we see bikes like Trek’s Crockett cyclocross bike and Czech-bred Fort Victor [see our full review] emerge, and custom builders like Rock Lobster [see Aaron Bradford's singlespeed and a custom frame reviewed in our Considering Custom series in Issue 22] and Protek by Carota focus on the material for their custom cyclocross race bikes.
Stay tuned as we aim to get the holeshot on a test bike.
More info: VanDesselSports.com
Check back often for more Interbike 2013 cyclocross bikes and gear. We’ve barely scratched the surface of the mountain of cyclocross goodies we found in Vegas.