Welcome to our forum. Feel free to post a message.
Maybe details of the improvements to the 2013 Etape frame will
follow soon on the website, but I couldn't help asking here anyway!
I hope to get myself riding out of London next year and begin training
for Sportives and explore the joys of some lung busting riding.
As I've turned 50 I realise I feel more alive when pushing the limits and
that those are probably a lot higher than expected, given steady training.
I hope the Etape will be the only bike needed for me to re-discover
fast cycling in the beautiful countryside of the UK and France.
I would prefer to ride on 25mm tyres and with mudguards in winter,
and possibly use 28mm for light touring duties.
Does the frame allow for these options?
thanks in anticipation
The key change for the 2013 Etape is the use of double-butted tubing, which shaves a few grams from the weight of the frame. We have also redesigned the down tube slightly for additional lateral stiffness and increased performance. The rear dropouts now feature a replaceable gear hanger, which is a very important benefit for a frame of this type.There are other subtle changes and the result is a higher specification frame but the price remains the same as the 2012 model.
The Etape is designed for 25c tyres with mudguards fitted. It is possible to fit some 28c tyres but the clearances will be very close and it will depend on the tyre profile. It's the tight geometry that helps make the Etape so good to ride yet very versatile.
I'm sure you would be delighted with the overal performance, ride quality and handling of the Etape. It's still the class leader by some distance and now represents even better value for money.
In your reply to Chris you said "The rear dropouts now feature a replaceable gear hanger, which is a very important benefit for a frame of this type."
I'm not disputing this as I don't build bikes. I just want to know why it's an important benefit and why the Etape didn't have a replaceable gear hanger before if it's so important?
The original Etape featured a generic drop out that was functional and worked very well. We are always seeking to improve our frames and designing our own drop out with a replaceable gear hanger was an obvious way to make a small practical improvement to the Etape. All our frames now feature a dropout with replaceable gear hanger.
Replaceable gear hangers are designed to break should the bike fall on the drive side during a crash. This can help avoid an expensive frame repair as a result of a bent gear hanger. As you know we not only build frames we repair them too and we receive frames (many brands) on a regular basis that have bent gear hangers. Titanium is a very hard material and it's not always a straightforward fix to re-align a badly bent gear hanger.