Open Cycle has appealed to its weight weenie Cervelo roots and put its U.P. (Unbeaten Path) frameset on a diet, shedding a few hundred grams on the frame and 175 grams on the fork in creating the new U.P.P.E.R. cyclocross/gravel frameset.
In the process the frame jumped up more than a notch in price, reaching $4,500 for the frameset from an already-pricey $2,900 for the U.P., quadrupling the popular dollar-per-gram-saved benchmark.
Many readers will stop reading after seeing the prices, while others might call their broker or simply dream and wipe the drool of their screens.
The company shed weight with a different carbon layup, claiming similar strength and a slightly increased “drivetrain and torsional stiffness.” Furthermore, the company adopted the latest trend of flat-mount disc brakes, and shed the orange paint for matte black for weight savings.
The company is one of the pioneers that embraced dual wheel diameters (700c and 27.5″), and designed a unique chainstay to accommodate fat tires (2.5″ for 27.5″) while maintaining short (42cm) chainstays.
Open Cycle also moved to its own proprietary U-Turn fork for its new U.P.P.E.R. frameset, as opposed to the 3T Luteus fork on the U.P. The fork is reported to be 375 grams, and takes a simple, smart approach to using flat mount brakes, as they bolt directly onto the fork without the weight or complexity of an adaptor bracket.
The fork and new frame also rely on Carbon-Ti for lever-less custom 12mm front and rear thru-axles.
Want similar tire clearance but hope to solo to the win in your next windy gravel grinder? Sister company 3T features its “aero” Exploro gravel bike with the same right chainstay design which we’ve ridden in Utah.
Since the release of the U.P., the idea of dual wheel diameter options has become more popular, with bikes like the Bombtrack Hook EXT (early reviewed here) and Van Dessel A.D.D. offering similar versatility, using steel and aluminum, respectively. With more options available for consumers, Open Cycle has differentiated itself with weight savings and price.
More info: opencycle.com