Masi, the company that has its roots with Faliero Masi, the legendary bicycle builder for professionals in the mid-century, is returning to its racing and artesian roots with the introduction of several new projects. Of greatest interest to us here is the new CXR cyclocross line with models featuring race geometry that are available in either aluminum or carbon.
The carbon frame CXR is brand new for 2016 with a proprietary mold for both the frame and fork and is designated the CXRc. Masi Product Manager Kellen LeBlanc said one of the thoughts propelling the new projects is of how Faliero Masi would have evolved his bicycles as technology became available were he alive today. (Just as Ernesto Colnago has embraced technology and global manufacturing.)
The frame details include 12mm thru-axle front and rear with flat-mount brakes and 142mm rear spacing. The tapered steerer full carbon fork has an elegant reverse curve. A unique feature of the carbon frame and fork is the removable fender eyelets, adding versatility to an otherwise race bike. The CXRc is available in a variety of builds, the flagship being a Force 1 hydraulic equipped model with Ritchey bar and stem, Stan’s Radler tubeless wheelset, and a Praxis Works crank and forged wide/narrow chainring.
The Aluminum CXR meets a lower price point and shares the same race geometry as the CXRc. The aluminum CXR also has fender mounts, but in a more standard non-removable configuration and it has the addition of rack mounts on the rear triangle. The included fork is an aluminum steerer and crown with carbon blades and 12mm thru-axle ends except for the entry level Shimano 1065 equipped model, which comes with a quick release fork. The rear of the aluminum frame is 142X12 thru axle with interchangeable dropouts, like we’ve seen on Fuji’s newest offerings, so it could be swapped to 135 quick release, or conversely the Shimano 105 model can be changed to 142X12 thru axle.
A Carbon CXR showbike was on display with an Icelandic Lauf leaf spring suspension fork and Shimano XTR Di2 with the R785 shifters and brakes stopping Stan’s Avion carbon tubeless wheels. The XTR clutch derailleur was paired with Shimano’s 11-42 cassette and the Praxis Works crank and forged wide/narrow single ring. Certainly, with the Lauf fork, that bike was an eye-catcher!
The other project that was introduced at Sea Otter 2016 is the California-made limited edition steel bikes. 100 each of modern steel road and cyclocross bike will be made by Van Mandric in Southern California of Columbus Life steel tubes and painted by Jim Allen at CycleSmith, who paints Roland Della Santa’s frames and was one of the painters at the Masi California factory in the 1970’s.
Details revealed on the display bike were flat-mount for disc brakes, 142X12mm thru-axle with a BB86 to allow a wide chainstay stance. Custom chainstays were ordered from Columbus with a tall, narrow profile and an S-bend for crank clearance. Those chainstays are welded towards the outer edges of the wide bottom bracket without a chainstay bridge. A 44mm headtube is used for compatibility with a tapered steerer fork, and has a beautiful matte silver head badge embossed with the Masi crest.
The steel project bikes will be available by the end of the year as a frame and fork only.
More Info: masibikes.com
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