Zerode G1 Build Video

Nov 17, 2011
by Stephen Roche  
Views: 32,107    Faves: 214    Comments: 13

Filmed and edited by Ian Howorth

Not your average build up video, but something a bit special. Fresh out of the box from New Zealand, the Zerode G1 is built up at the UK distributor Prestige Cycles with some rather spangerly kit going on courtesy of Renthal UK and SRAM.

www.zerode.co.nz

Posted In:
Zerode



100 Comments

  • 11 0
 My brother recently got a new Zerode after the first one was stolen. Heres our take on the Zerode build:

www.pinkbike.com/photo/7400861

Zerodes are the best bike ever. Super smooth, super quite and look the goods as well.
  • 17 0
 holy shit, how many zerodes are even made. thats possibly the stupidest thing to steal, good luck with finding out who did it. just wait a while and youll probably see some absolute squid on one
  • 11 0
 That's the thing. At the time of theft there were only 7 Zerodes in all of Australia and two were red one of which was his. Stupid thief, but aren't they all stupid. Annoys me though
  • 4 1
 best bike build i've seen in a long while. unlike most others i've seen this one slows down enough each frame letting one see what is actually going on throughout the build and imo makes it that much more realistic and interesting to watch. really nice clip and nice ride.
  • 4 0
 Yeah would have to agree that this video kept my interest the whole way through. I liked how it just showed parts of the bike until the very end. Plus I felt like I was in the movie TRON or something haha
  • 3 0
 There were times where I was like, "I have no idea what I'm looking at, but this is so cool!" It was almost like watching Inception for the first time.
  • 3 0
 I got the 7th of the first batch of 9 and it is the fastest bike I have ever ridden. I had a Session 88 and an Intense M3 before and this bike is way faster and way easier to ride. I don't know why anyone would buy any other topend DH bike. This one is better. Rob the owner and designer is a great guy and will take care of you. Send him an email and be prepared to go faster than you ever have before.
  • 6 0
 Saving my pennys to get one of these bad boys!
  • 2 0
 If you want to check out how the ride just head over to clintwhiteracing.com!! The team has 3 riders all on the new Zerode G1 and the ride extremely well! Had a test the other weekend, weight is irrelevant, the roll faster than anything i have ridden and suspension is second to none. Would love to be racing on one
  • 3 1
 Aaah I remember when my zerode looked that clean 10 months ago now she's looking a bit well used with approx 5000km of downhilling and she still runs like new last count I heard their was 90 sold world wide so they r still pretty rare build them up with xc or all mountain components ( they will hold up to dh ) and go in search of the ruffest rut filled track the zerode will turn that track into a tarceal road. Now it's raining and I really want to ride
  • 4 0
 Ummm 5000km of downhill you say. That's like riding all the way from Whistler to New York city. Or from one end of nz to the other 2 and a half times. I don't think there is much truth to your statement.
  • 1 0
 I think this frame is a cool idea but did anyone else notice it runs a Shimano Alfine rear internal hub as the gearbox. Not that there is anything wrong with that. I'm wondering if adding weight up that high on the frame will change handling characteristics? I'm just thinking of the Pinion gearbox that is mounted in the bottom bracket.
  • 1 2
 That's exactly what I noticed too. If you want to run a gearbox, simply build a specific wheel for it with an Alfine hub, it's going to much easier and cheaper than building a whole new bike, especially considering how expensive this frame is, plus you can use whatever frame you want. Perhaps it is a custom spec Alfine with beefed up gears?
  • 1 1
 I'm thinking it is a custom Alfine hub because it has to run two sprockets on it. I think this idea of mounting the Alfine in the frame is better than using it on the rear wheel. Having the Alfine mounted in the frame keeps the weight balanced in the middle of the bike. The thing I don't understand is why the price is so high. They are using an almost stock internal geared rear hub as a gearbox that retails for about $400. For the over $3500 price I want a frame that has all the parts custom made parts specifically for that frame. I don't want to see 3/8" axle nuts holding my gearbox in.
  • 3 0
 There are a number of reasons the cost is that way.
1. Insane amounts of machining (Most Expensive Frame SAPA Ever Made!!!)
2. Small Batches
3. Being made by SAPA in USA raises cost some but lowers QC issues so it is a good tradeoff overall.
4. Those are TI bolts throughout including the nuts BTW.
5. That hub is SPENDY unless you buy 500 at a time!

Making a custom AXLE would void the 2 year Shimano warranty I think...
DHR, M9, Brooklyn, are all in same price range.
  • 2 0
 placing the Gearbox in the frame also allows the suspension (front and rear) to absorb most of the shock forces so the box is not bounced around nearly as much. If it was in the wheel the force of the wheel hitting objects would cause the Gearbox to break (its made for road bikes remember).
  • 1 1
 That is a good point that I left out. I think at this time due to the limited production the price out weighs the benefits of this frame. At its current price you can buy a one year old Specialized demo complete or even a brand new Santa Cruz carbon V10 frame. Hopefully the company will get bigger and production numbers will go up lowering the price of the frame.
  • 3 0
 a carbon V10 is £300 more then the zerode and you would have to spend another £300 on drivetrain aswell if you were building from new
  • 1 1
 I don't know how you did your math but after converting this frame to US dollars it retails for $3515 and the Santa Cruz carbon V10 retails for $3299. Also the Alfine hub weighs over 3.5 pounds. That is going to be heavier than almost any rear derailleur and cassette combo.
  • 2 0
 i dont know what the price's are in the US but in the UK a v10 is £3000 and a G1 is £2700
  • 1 0
 Wow, that is really expensive for both those frames. They must really hit you hard with those customs fees in the UK.
  • 1 0
 now i just want a carbon Zerode AM bike with hammershmidt! too much to ask for? i think not, they would sell like hot cakes once people understood the potential of such a design. i think the application for am is even more exciting, especially if it offers the great uncompromising pedaling/suspension/braking performance it's supposed to have.
  • 5 1
 That's so cool! looks great and original.
  • 1 0
 I wonder how many frames these guys are selling. Interesting design but why use a gearbox? what are the advantages? I like the upper pivot point but the frame sells for over $3500 usd. Thats alot of cash.
  • 3 0
 True they are a little more than others but you do not need to buy about $500 worth of drivetrain. So it save you a bit in total build making it equal or less than other boutique brands out there. The big advantages of the gearbox are no chain loss ever, shifting anytime, no broken derailers, and little to no servicing.
  • 1 0
 I think major advantage is smaller unsprung weight (better bump-following ability and vibration isolation)
  • 2 0
 Shifting without pedaling is a huge bonus, you can shift any time, anywhere. Maintenance and reliability, as well as those mentioned. They're made in USA, isn't that roughly what you'd pay for any made in USA frame. and you get in effect, a chain guide, shifter, cassette, mech X how many you may break. And the chains running straight, and not being ground into the next gear on changes, so it and the sprockets last much longer also.
  • 2 0
 I saw 2 of these bikes at the Pro GRT in Port Angeles,WA they look pretty cool and they are super quiet going down the trail. i want one!
  • 2 0
 Pretty sweet.I remeber reading about the zerode a while back and thought they where amazing then but now i really want one.
  • 3 0
 I'd love to get to try one of these.
  • 4 0
 what a beautiful bike!
  • 2 0
 Proof of intelligent design. Gearboxes allow for better linkages and less unsprung weight.
  • 1 0
 Saw a few guys racing these at the last round of the Vic DH series. If you like a quiet bike these things are worth a look. Stealth!
  • 3 0
 bike porn to the max. music and all lol
  • 3 0
 this zerode is awesome and the music simply perfect
  • 4 1
 Sweet
  • 3 1
 Mmmm.... I kinda like it.
  • 2 0
 Cool design, nice and different.
  • 2 0
 long time before i can pick 1 o those boys up cheap
  • 2 0
 Interesting bike, I wonder how much it weighs?
  • 2 0
 mine weighs in at about 18.2 kg, i could probably get it to 17.5 with some other trick bits. when your on the track throwing it around you dont feel the weight cos its all centered between your knees, but when you hit a flat section and have to pedal abit you do feel its a heavy bike. Awesom is not the word for this bike though.
  • 2 1
 It's pretty cool riding the place where this was developed. Always see a zerode when I go to Rotorua!
  • 1 0
 go NZ
  • 1 0
 ive got a question would the internal fearbox make the bike lighter or heavier?
  • 2 0
 It makes it about the same because you lose all the cogs on the cassette except for one, and you lose the derailleur and half the cabling.
  • 3 0
 It decreases the unsprung weight which is really good as it makes your suspension more responsive.
  • 3 0
 Yeah and that also allowed them to change the travel path of the rear wheel while the shock was being compressed. instead of going up like most bikes, the Zerode goes backwards and then up. I think it is meant to help you take the hits of bigger rocks/holes a bit better while still working great on the smaller breaking bumps. amazing mountain bicycle technology!!
  • 1 1
 It makes it heavier, than say using an idler pulley like the Canfield does. One of these hubs weights more than cogs, cables, and the der, plus, your adding a second shifter to this setup. It's heavier but it allows you to rid yourself of the crappy rear der, while also running an ultra high pivot design. Rearward axle path has nothing to do with the geared hub it uses internally. You can do the same thing with an idler pulley.
  • 1 0
 You forgot chain guide in your equation. And there's only one shifter. The frames are built tough, that's as much of the weight gain as the Alfine. But it's so efficient, and with such a light rear they ride light as mentioned. The axle path does have to do with the gearbox. The gearbox can't go lower as it has to clear the cranks rotation, and the suspension design would have to be changed, and you'd still need the chain to go up and around it. Obviously Zerode wanted the high pivot, and I have to agree with their location choice, rearward path is rad. Yes an idler can have the same effect if desired.
  • 1 0
 Idler gears, with the canfield are epically well done. BUT, on many others, they are not. Notorious leg eating pant sucking devices.

Both Zerode and Lahar have done it right (Think Sunn was the same way) with keeping the chain suck ordeal far far away by keeping the chain enclosed btw the legs.
  • 1 0
 The chain looks so close to the frame on the chainring and also coming off the gear hub.
  • 2 0
 yeah!! porn music!!! perfect!! lol
  • 1 0
 Almost seems sexual lubing everything and inserting the bottom bracket and spindle the way the mechanic did. Beautiful bike!
  • 1 2
 Doesn't this bike suffer from rear brake jack? Maybe the brake jack could be tamed by mounting the caliper on the lower linkage arm, like the Devinci Wilson. Looks like a well thought out design apart from that.
  • 2 1
 Shouldn't do because its a Horst link rear end (FSR) so with the calliper mounted to the seatstay it won't have the same effect on suspension movement.
  • 2 0
 Hey dude its not a horst link! Its a high single pivot with a rocker link. And I have one it doesnt real brake jack because of the rearward axle path, so wheel doesnt have to rotate to keep you moving
  • 2 0
 I only assumed it was a horst because of the pivot underneath the rear axle.
Didn't realise the higher stays were actually the main swingarm. My bad.
Well done for the neg rep though... that taught me. Razz
  • 1 0
 the wheel doesn't move in a straight line, it rotates a little
does somebody have a better explanation why there wouldn't be any brake jack?
  • 1 0
 i apologize for my ignorance, but what is brake jack ?
  • 3 1
 Brake jack is when the suspension stiffens under braking. A majority of FS designs today are pro-brake squat, where the suspension is compressed under braking. Brake squat is generally more acceptable in terms of ride feel.

Look at the DOPE floating brake system. It props the caliper in a position that grabs the rotor when it's in the forward moving position of its rotation, causing the brake force vector to line up with the rod that braces against it, that's anchored on the frame and the axle.

This has the caliper in a position that's braced against the main pivot arm, on the end of the arm that moves along a huge arc. It grabs the rotor when it is just starting to make a downward rotation (at the 11 o'clock position, when viewed from the non-drive side, where the rotor rotates counterclockwise) resulting in a forward and slightly downward force against the pivot arm. The pivot moves it upwards and rearwards, so the brake forces opposes the rearward motion and some of the upward motion. The deeper in travel this design gets, the stronger the brake jack gets, since the caliper moves to a position that would grab the rotor when it is making more of of a downward rotation, so it is more opposing the upward movement--this design has more of a rearward axle path early on and more of an upward axle path deeper in its travel. Probably should make it a floating brake system, as I doubt bracing it against the other pivot arm would help, or move the caliper further back like the SC Bullit.

It's a single pivot, not a horst link, since there's no link between the main pivot and the axle. It's an upside-down walking beam design, that pulls the beam, instead of pushes.

Video of Zerode suspension: www.youtube.com/watch?v=e2KRlsBwa9Q&feature=player_detailpage#t=70s
  • 1 0
 "It's an upside-down walking beam design, that pulls the beam, instead of pushes."
yeah thats the bit I didn't quite spot...
  • 3 2
 There IS brake jack. Literally there IS. No question about it. This is why the LAHAR, one of the true originators of this design in terms of it being proven on a major race circuit, used a floating mount.

Brake jack means squat when fixed, like when lahar did it. Just like the Lahar, the Canfield Jedi/f1, and a couple other tiny companies, these bikes are about rearward travel. This bike just uses the shimano hub on the frame to act as a gear box, just like Lahar used the Rholoff hub. Canfield did it another way and just used an idler pulley ordeal for the chain, in order to keep a normal drivetrain but eliminate chain stretch.

This bike is NOT horst link. It's an ultra high single pivot in principal, regardless of if it has a pivot at the dropout. IE this is basically mimicking what LAHAR did with their frame.

This is basically what this bike mimicks in design : www.pinkbike.com/photo/7085814
  • 1 0
 And with the "gearbox" cough, gear hub, just like the Lahar uses (but unlike this bike with the Shimano, Lahar uses the Rholoff hub as seen in this pic : www.pinkbike.com/photo/7085795 )
  • 1 0
 so there is brake jack.... i guess its not perfect
  • 1 0
 Who said it's perfect? And who said it isn't perfect? Brake jack can literally be 100% eliminated using a floating caliper such as the Lahar has, so, in that regard, the design is perfect, when utilized with a floating brake.

Some of the best mountain bikes every created use floating brake mounts, because why would one worry about something as miniscule as brake jack when a specific set of parts has already conquered it, basically leaving pedal interfearence as the only thing to conquer, asides from leverage ratios (and with this bike, the lahar, the canfield, the bmw, and so on, leverage ratios are also conquered as well).
  • 1 1
 That Lahar looks even sweeter than the Zerode.
  • 1 0
 I definitely agree.
  • 2 1
 Clean up in Isle Z.
Some mistruths above.
Most bikes have some level of brake squat(even the Lahar).
So, like the bikes designed to squat using floating brakes, or linkage suspension designs, so does the Zerode.
The effect of this is the geometry stays more consistent as the forks are also compressing(squatting)as you're braking. The rear wheel can be more easily felt and controlled with the rear brake, and so can the suspension. Oh, and it's lighter, with less moving parts.
  • 1 2
 "So, like the bikes designed to squat using floating brakes, or linkage suspension designs, so does the Zerode"

Reference?

I know the benefits of having a bike with pro-brake squat, but brake jack is another story. The Zerode has brake jack. It apparently hasn't changed since it's prototype stage. 185% - 135% brake anti-squat in its proto days and about the same running its current form through the same linkage analysis program. Most well designed modern bikes are 100% or less (over 100% is pro-anti squat and under 100% is pro-squat).

linkagedesign.blogspot.com/2010/11/zerode-prototype.html
  • 1 1
 LOL using some online linage ordeal. That's pretty low. I'm sure algorithms on those sites are 100% tried and true.
  • 2 1
 Varaxis that anti squat chart is pedal induced anti squat not brake induced anti squat(Jake).
  • 1 1
 You are not reading the graph correctly. The red line shows brake anti-squat and the scale on the right is for brake anti-squat. The blue line shows its pedal induced anti squat, with its scale on the left. BTW, where's your reference for your prior statement? It still smells freshly pulled out of your ass.

rffr: a little skepticism is healthy, but do you know of any more accurate values? Feel free to browse that site to see how knowledgeable the guy is. It's accurate enough for me, knowing at least statics and studying the material on path analysis, which also advocates the analysis program used by the guy I previously linked to (who happens to share the most public and generally accurate profiles of various bike models). www.rdrop.com/users/twest/mtb/pathAnalysis/index.html
  • 1 0
 Okay, first up, keep the hair pulling out of it so we can all learn/progress"It still smells freshly pulled out of your ass".
I really don't get the graph. But I'm guessing the reason it's stating anti squat is either that the bike squats when breaking, it's stiffening, and therefore preventing squatting. If the bike is pulled into it's suspension from braking, it's in the stiffer spring zone, so will resist squatting. More than likely though the brake forces stop suspension activity(yes anti squat), but they still make the bike squat. So to explain, rear brakes makes the suspension compress, but retards it's plushness. This is al caused by moments here or there, and hurts my brain thinking about it as I'm uneducated on engineering lingo/theory.
Zerodes squat when braking. I know because I have one.
Here's a great reference for you www.rotorburn.com/forums/showthread.php?35572-quot-Brake-jack-quot-an-explanation&highlight=anti+squat If you still have doubts, post a question on that htread, and "S" will happily sort you out with an explanation.
Picture looking at the bike from the drive side. No weld up the rear axle(to show brake forces), no picture trying to rotate the rear wheel forward. The whole bike would want to turn clockwise, but the front wheels held solid, so the energy goes into the single pivot, and compresses the suspension. Wait, scrap that, I've got a better analogy.
Grab a pair of scissors, open them. Put right finger in right finger hole(this represents front wheel), and rotate left finger hole clockwise with left hand(this represents braking back wheel). The scissor pivot represents the suspension pivot. As you'll see, the pivot lowers=suspension compressing. You have to let your left hand move left/backwards as this is what happens on the bike.
  • 1 0
 I always find it funny when outsiders to rearward travel bikes focus on braking forces. Until someone rides a rearward travel bike, they will have no clue how these bikes literally glue you to the ground. These are not freeride bikes. The canny can get away with it due to how it's designed, but either way, these bike literally keep you on path. Nothing else comes close.
  • 1 0
 I'd rather listen to companies who have personally struggled with leverage ratios, and have conquered them accordingly.

Companies such as Lahar, Tomac, Schwinn, Yeti, and so many other truly top tier companies. IMO, Intense, specialized, santa cruz haven't even got close to the more infamous companies yet in terms of trial and error. Remember the lawwill days...? Yea... that is true leverage ratio hell mixed with true experience in failing and conquering. Unless the guy that made the algorithm for that site has worked for most of the companies on the market who have dealt with real world stuff... all he is doing is trying to steal lessons from infamous companies, and then make it seems like he is top dog in the linkage ordeal. BUT then again, steal data from x amount of companies and be considered the pinnacle of " go to" these days seems to make sense.
  • 1 0
 id ride one of these robo-bikes for sure, how bout a demo day in whis ZERODE !
  • 1 0
 www.youtube.com/watch?v=wH4TYL_DLmM

me on atest ride in morzine...this bike is like my husqvarna, going for it !!!
  • 2 1
 its different but i think its a great build good job!
  • 1 0
 Now lets see it on the trails!
  • 1 0
 gotta lube up those holes
  • 2 0
 thats sick!
  • 1 0
 Hot stuff, but seriously whats with the chain
  • 1 0
 its a cool bike looks like an old glory crossed with a gt fury
  • 2 0
 Bike Porn forsure
  • 1 0
 Excessively hot build!
  • 1 0
 3:43 = oh my lord :O
  • 2 1
 music sux
  • 1 1
 Sorry but I turned it off at 2minutes Frown
  • 4 1
 that's your problem...
  • 2 4
 yea grease that spindle. f*ck yea build that bike. f*ckin oh my god torque that fork.
  • 1 1
 Nice tune!
  • 1 0
 now i just want a carbon Zerode AM bike with hammershmidt! too much to ask for? i think not, they would sell like hot cakes once people understood the potential of such a design. i think the application for am is even more exciting, especially if it offers the great uncompromising pedaling/suspension/braking performance it's supposed to have.

edit:
oops, not meant as a reply!
  • 1 0
 Wtf would the point of that be? The whole point in this bike is an uber high pivot. Why would you need to run hammershmidt when you have the option of 10-18 gears depending on which gear hub you use (shimano, rohloff etc). The point in this hub is there is no need for a double ring, or a triple ring. It has ratios that cover everything.
  • 1 0
 watch this space.......
  • 1 2
 cool bike..... gaylord forker music
  • 1 1
 dfou, having looked at your profile, i'd have to agree, the music you like is awful, but your bike is not so cool.
  • 2 0
 some one died and became a comedian..... stick to your day job u dick-wack.... we all can't like Justin Beber Big Grin
  • 1 1
 dfou comin atcha with the weak kiwi anti-banter.

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