[April Fools] Robert Axle Project Launches an Electronic Thru Axle

Mar 31, 2021 at 2:07
by James Smurthwaite  

Press Release: Robert Axle Project

The Robert Axle Project has eliminated the need for tools with the press of a button. Enter, the eRap Thru Axle, the world’s first self-threading and ejecting thru axle.

Inspired by the initial launch of SRAM eTap, the Robert Axle Project began development of the first wireless thru axle. After 4 years of development and testing, eRap axles are ready for the world stage and the most rugged environments on the planet.


The eRap thru axle works at the push of a button. Simply line up the wheel, slide the axle into place and press the LED lit button. The axle will immediately come to life as the threads begin to spin and pull the axle the rest of the way into the frame, securing the axle to a precise 12nm (+/- 1%) thanks to the built-in torque sensor. No need for a handle, or tools!

In addition to the increased convenience, RAP is touting an aerodynamic benefit of 0.5 watts due to the hex hole being replaced with a smooth button. For those riding at night, the orange LED ring increases side visibility. Robert Axle Project has filed multiple patents for the technologies they have developed and employed in this revolutionary axle. They report that four patents have already been granted and one is still pending.

Chris at Robert Axle project admits that early on there were some challenges with accidental removal. “More than a few times during testing, we would set our bikes down and the button would get pressed by a rock or stick, causing the axle to remove itself. The first few times we didn’t notice until we tried to ride away and the wheel fell out.” Robert Axle Project has since added two safety measures; the first is that the button must be pressed and held for 2 seconds before it begins to eject. The second is an iPhone app (sorry, Android app not available yet) that includes axle removal notifications. Future updates to the app will include security features to disable the use of the on axle button. Unfortunately RAP says that these security updates will come with a $41 per year app subscription to cover the hosting costs.


Now if you’re asking yourself how long the battery lasts, there’s no need to worry. The axles are self-charging when ridden and can hold a charge for 30 days between rides. If the battery does die you can ride the bike to recharge it or send the entire bike to RAP for removal.

The beauty of these axles doesn’t stop there. After reducing the size of the electronics as much as possible, RAP found they had a bit of extra space inside the axle so they have filled it with inert gas to prevent corrosion. They claim the axles are fully waterproof and ready for rainy cobbles, cyclocross, and even the downhill world cup. That inert gas is also lighter than air and reduces the axle weight by 2g!

eRap axles will retail for $420 for a pair. Orders are open now at robertaxleproject.com. Axles will begin shipping on 4/1/2021


38 Comments

  • 47 1
 That's a stronger April fools then grim donut!
  • 39 1
 Shut up and take my bitcoin.
  • 5 0
 Shut up and take my rainbow-unicorn GIF NFTs
  • 1 0
 @geephlow: Gladly! We'll be millionaires by the end of the day.
  • 20 0
 Sram missing out on the 'AXS AXLE'
  • 1 0
 Robert AXS
  • 3 0
 Oh man I want to put AXS on an Evil now...
  • 2 0
 MAXS
  • 15 3
 cRAP
  • 8 1
 eRAP had never seen the light of day if SRAM had called their new system TAP-e instead of eTAP. \facts
  • 6 0
 'Chris King releases new self tightening electronic headset'
  • 3 0
 Shhhhh, we're in talks currently.
  • 4 0
 Do they come in extra lrg super mega huge boost spacing
Size?I just ordered my 24/296.34567mm hubs and my 12/148 conversion endcaps are stuck on some boat somewhere Smile
  • 1 0
 We're working on it. Might take a year for us to bring that to market.
  • 4 0
 Here's a link to their prototype. It's pretty impressive. I didn't think it would work that well. www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7rhCjBCqh8
  • 4 0
 oh fuck that's real. I expected that link to be a rick roll.
  • 1 0
 Haha, that would have been a good rick roll.
  • 1 0
 Thanks for sharing the link Ordwin. It's been hard to keep quiet on this project all these years. It took a lot of work to refine the details and make it reliable enough to meet our high standards.
  • 7 1
 Just pre-ordered. Sick!
  • 1 0
 Your order has already shipped. Thanks for jumping on it!
  • 4 0
 ANT+ integration with headunit coming? Would also be great to see Strava support axle torque alongside heartrate.
  • 3 0
 I would actually buy these
  • 3 0
 $420 per pair? Mark me down for 69, please.
  • 1 0
 This actually would be amazing to have Just make the button be a plug that hides a hex, and you're on to something amazing! Just don't know how to charge it
  • 2 0
 I guess the Robert Axle Project did get the perpetual recharging down to a science! Wink
  • 3 1
 Wow it's that day already!!
  • 1 0
 Disappointed. I was hoping these would automatically eject if the battery went dead.
  • 1 0
 It shouldn't be too hard for us to add that with a firmware update. Should we make it optional or default?
  • 3 2
 Should have been ROBOT axle...Am I right......I'll get my coat.....
  • 1 0
 battery dies...easy out tapped led
  • 2 0
 Brilliant :-)
  • 3 3
 This is going to work so well with my new wireless brakes
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