EXCLUSIVE: Devinci Wilson Carbon - In Depth

Sep 7, 2012 at 20:58
by Mike Levy  

Steve Smith On The Devinci Wilson Carbon

Views: 46,670    Faves: 583    Comments: 21

Filmed and edited by Nic Genovese and Scott Secco

Devinci's Wilson Carbon Explained

Views: 15,766    Faves: 88    Comments: 5

Filmed and edited by Nic Genovese

Devinic Wilson Carbon

Wilson Carbon Details

• Entirely new carbon fiber front triangle
• Rear wheel travel: 216mm/8.5''
• Carbon fiber seat stay
• Split Pivot suspension
• Tapered head tube
• Replaceable ISCG-05 chain guide tabs
• Lifetime warranty (mfg. defects )
• Frame weight: 7.1lbs w/o shock (9.4 lbs w/ FOX DHX RC4 )
• Wilson SL weight: 36.11lbs
• Wilson SL 6,999$ USD
• Wilson RC 5,599$ USD
• Wilson frameset 3,399$ USD
• Availability: January 2013

Devinci Wilson Carbon front triangle

Carbon Fiber Frame

The contemporary Wilson first debuted in 2011, replacing the original design with an 8.5" travel layout that employed a novel concentrically rotating axle pivot from the mind of Dave Weagle. Showing their commitment to full-fledged World Cup racing, Devinci signed Canadian racer and fan favorite Steve Smith to pilot the new bike shortly after. Fast forward to Interbike 2011, where we broke the news that the Wilson would be sporting a carbon fiber seat stay assembly, a fact that alluded to bigger projects in the works behind closed doors at Devinci. Yes, it was obvious that a carbon frame was coming, and we said as much, but Devinci was tight lipped on the subject at that point. "From the beginning of my collaboration with Devinci, we have known that at some point we would build carbon downhill bikes," Weagle explains. "Once we had experience with the seat stay assembly that showed massive gains, it was an easy decision to move to the next step and go to the carbon front triangle to see what gains we could make there."

It has taken a more than full year of development work on the Wilson Carbon to bring it to fruition, but Devinci says that the move to carbon not only delivers real benefits when it comes to ride quality, but it is also much lighter to boot. In a time when any downhill bike that comes in at over 40lbs is thought of as heavy, the complete Wilson SL tips the scales at a claimed 36.11lbs right off the showroom floor. The competitive weight is possible thanks to the frame weighing in at 9.4lbs, including its FOX DHX RC4 shock, mudguard, seat collar and drop out. No, it doesn't take the crown as the lightest frame out there, but it is respectable weight that is a pound lighter than many other options. Likely more important than its weight to many potential Wilson Carbon owners, the frame carries a lifetime warranty that speaks volumes about Devinic's confidence in its strength. It is true that many racers sell off their bikes at season's end, voiding the warranty at that point, but the fact that Devinci offers such an assurance should give riders piece of mind that the bike will be able to brush off a beating at the hands of the most aggressive riders.

Why Start With The Seat Stay?

While Devinci isn't first to the 'carbon in DH' party, they did take a different route than most other companies by producing a carbon fiber seat stay for the rear of the bike
before moving ahead with a carbon front triangle. In fact, there are multiple downhill bikes in production today that still combine a carbon front triangle with an aluminum rear end, with the manufacturer often citing both cost and design challenges when talking carbon chain or seat stays. So, why would Devinci start with the carbon swing arm that they debuted in 2011? The answer to that question lies in the Canadian company wanting to better understand the effects of using the material on a top-flight downhill bike, as well as the carbon allowing them to better tune the bike's rear end rigidity. And we're not simply talking about all-out stiffness, but rather just the right amount that won't make for either a stiff, jarring ride, or a wet noodle of a bike.

There is a point where you have too much stiffness, and so for us it was about trying to find that perfect balance point where it's not too much and too little.
- Dave Weagle
The first question that many ask about any new carbon frame concerns its weight, but there is more to the story that just how many grams have been saved compared to the aluminum version. The other part to the equation is chassis stiffness, specifically that often intangible feel that gives a bike its personality. It become clear early on that the performance difference between the original aluminum version
and the carbon model actually required different damper settings due to how the material absorbs and releases energy. At this point Devinci knew that carbon would be used for both the front and rear of the bike, but they chose to continue with the bike's aluminum chain stays due to diminishing returns when it comes to applying carbon to this section of the frame - not only would very little weight be shaved, if any, but it would also cost quite a bit more to manufacture. A bike's chain stays are also in the direct line of fire from trail debris, not to mention being under constant abuse from above and below as the chain slaps around over rough terrain.

Devinci Wilson Carbon on test jig

Smooth Where It Counts

The large majority of carbon frames are created by using a bladder molding process whereby the desired shape is constructed by laying down specific sheets of carbon into a steel mold. A bladder, made from either latex or nylon, produces outward pressure to force the carbon sheets against the mold and into the desired shape. Although that may sound simple enough, there are many more steps involved before a carbon part comes to life. The technique has been used for many years with much success, but it has limitations when it comes to complex shapes and intricate sections. One of the keys to manufacturing strong and reliable carbon frames consistently is the ability to precisely apply the correct pressure from the inside, yielding uniform compaction with as few voids as possible in the carbon layup. The bladder method has a tough time being able to do just that in tight spaces, which is why Devinci has taken a different approach. They continue to use standard bladder molding technique for the larger tubes on the Wilson Carbon frame, but utilize removable silicone inserts at the head tube junction and
lower on the frame where the down tube and twin spars come together. The silicone inserts are able to get into those tight spots, areas where a bladder would have a hard time penetrating, and apply pressure to the carbon layup during the molding process. The end result is a stronger frame due to even compaction minimizing void formation during the frame's construction, an especially important fact when you consider the high-stress areas where the silicone method is employed. Cutting the frame in two for inspection reveals a smooth inner wall, and not just at the larger down or tube tube locations, but also at the both the bottom bracket and head tube junctions.

Devinci Wilson Carbon rear suspension

Split Pivot Suspension

While the bike is built around an entirely new carbon fiber front triangle, it utilizes the same Weagle-conceived Split Pivot rear suspension layout as found on the aluminum model. Devinci and Dave Weagle have spent years shaping the Wilson's suspension layout into a package that devours big terrain better than any other bike we've spent time on, so it comes as no surprise to us that the new bike continues with the proven design, thereby allowing Devinci to concentrate on development of the carbon front end rather than conceiving an entirely new bike from scratch. The Wilson's rear suspension consists of four major components: the carbon fiber seat stay assembly or wheel link, the Split Pivot concentric dropout pivot, the floating brake link (in the Wilson as the chain stays ), and the control link that activates the shock and handles braking reactions.

The seat stay assembly determines the rear wheel's axle path as it moves upwards from an impact, with the high main pivot making for an axle path with more reward travel than if the pivot was located lower on the frame. The design is said to allow for both excellent square edge bump absorption and pedalling efficiency, two priorities for any competitive downhill bike. At the back of the Wilson, the rear dropout pivot rotates concentrically around the axle, and the brake caliper is mounted to the bike's floating chain stays in an effort to neutralize the effect that the braking forces have on the suspension. The layout allows the rear wheel to track the ground, even when the rider is hard on the brakes.

The Control Link

While it's the concentric axle pivot receives the lion's share of attention when it comes to breaking down the bike's design, it is the nearly hidden control link (pictured at right ) that greatly determines how the bike reacts to the terrain. The one-piece unit is machined from a solid chunk of 7050 aluminum, and rotates concentrically around the bottom bracket via two massive sealed bearings. It is home to not only the two large pivot bearings, but also to both the lower shock mount and the forward attachment point of the bike's chain stays, and as such plays an integral role in the Wilson's performance. "This piece is really the heart of the stiffness of the chain stays, and also how the bike reacts to bumps", Weagle explains, with the shape of the control link determining the suspension's leverage ratio throughout its travel.

It is often assumed that a bike's chain and seat stays are the key to stiffness, and that is true to a large extent, but the Wilson's control link is also an important piece of the puzzle. But, it isn't as simple as just producing an ultra-solid piece to connect the stays to the front triangle - the goal isn't to have the stiffest rear end possible, but rather to have exactly the right amount if rigidity. This accounts for the control link's relieved shape that is far from arbitrary. "By making changes to this part we can really tailor both the stiffness and the suspension performance of the bike", says Weagle. Its location on the frame is also inline with Weagle's goal of situating the Wilson's heaviest suspension parts as low as possible on the bike.

Devinci Wilson Carbon control link
What is not immediately apparent in this photo is that the rock Stevie is pinning it down is too steep to walk down.

To The Races

All of Devinci's test lab and development work culminated with Smith taking a win aboard the Wilson Carbon on its debut race at Crankworx's Canadian Open, a fast and rough course that rivals many World Cup tracks in difficulty, not to mention that he was also up against a stacked field that had the event looking more like a World Cup stop than a one-off DH race. While there's little doubt that Smith would have won aboard the aluminum Wilson, the top placing shows just how comfortable he was on the new bike despite it being built-up shortly before the event. The next stop for both Steve and the Wilson Carbon came just a week ago at Leogang, Austria, on a relatively smooth World Championship's track that couldn't have been any more different from the brutal Canadian Open course. Both the bike and Steve did Canada proud, proving both their versatility with a solid third place that was just 1.2 seconds off of the winning time.

While it is unlikely that anyone reading this will be challenging Steve on the race circuit, it is clear that the new bike is up to the task. What's more, barring the custom Devinci Global Racing paint job, Smith's Wilson Carbon is assembled around the very same as frame the production model, including the exact same geometry.
bigquotesPeople assume that we have prototypes with different angles and all that, but the bike you buy from Devinci is the bike I'm riding. It's the angles I like and exactly what I'm riding at the World Cups. - Steve Smith

Steve Smith aboard that new Devinci Carbon Wilson with a custom Fox racing kit to match. Photo by Colin Meagher.


Author Info:
mikelevy avatar

Member since Oct 18, 2005
2,032 articles
Must Read This Week

  • 80 6
 Why isn't Stevie invited to Rampage?
  • 7 3
 Is he registered for the FMB tour?
  • 15 1
 i don't think that's a requirement, Gee isn't registered either

...or is he?
  • 2 0
 Thats not a requirement. I'm not sure how Redbull puts together the invite list. I know there are some pre-qualification of guys right into the finals like Semenuk, Zink, and Gee based on past results etc. As for exactly who gets invited to round out the field, I havent seen anywhere that details the process of exactly how they narrow it down or what they look at.
  • 26 0
 I'd guess that if he wanted to go, he could. Remember that for these World Cup guys it is all about racing... they train their balls off to race, not to get injured at a freeride event (as rad as the Rampage is). Gee and some other WC guys have attended in the past, but that won't be the norm.
  • 7 0
 I doubt Stevie's manager would let hit compete at Rampage, like mike said, it's all about racing, and at the highest level.
  • 7 30
flag Dirtbiker17 (Sep 10, 2012 at 17:12) (Below Threshold)
 itd be sweet to see stevie there but (dont neg prop me) i think rampage would murder the carbon wilson
  • 4 0
 Did he say it "exorbs"? If so, my kinda bike!! Huge fan S, very proud!
  • 13 2

Id say the carbon Wilson would murder the rampage, but to each their own.
  • 2 0
 yea idk. still a super sick bike
  • 2 0
 corners like a bat out of hell l!!!!!!!!
  • 2 1
 carbon is stronger then alloy provided its a hit that just places uniform stress on it.. smacking your downtube on a sharp rock is really the only thing where alloy would be better aka sharp impacts but dirtbiker carbon is alot stronger than you think
  • 3 7
flag finnrambo (Sep 10, 2012 at 20:28) (Below Threshold)
 oh for fucks sakes not another ad
  • 1 0
 thats what i mean. if the frame smacks a rock it might get cracked or broken. but for riding (not crashing) carbon is better than alloy. but since @ rampage there is a tonne of crashs the alloy frame is better
  • 20 2
 Great to hear Dave speak about it, there's definitely more to it than it seems at a glance... although a glance is enough to make you want more, that thing looks SICK..!
  • 2 1
 this is the only bike that i have seen on pinkbike in years that i have actually gotten excited about! i don't just want the bike, i NEED it! can't wait till january!
  • 7 0
 Hold the phone, $3399 CAD, in British £ thats £2200?! Am I missing something? Thats mega cheap for a full carbon frame. The Demo is £3500. An aluminium Wilson is £2500.. no doubt british prices will be inflamed! Jesus, I wanna go Cannada, just to buy one and bring it back!
  • 1 0
 Well, still cheap compared to Brazil the Carbon Trek Session is 33k here the Carbon Demo is 30K, a V10 frame is 12K and an Entourage as The Status ( cheaper one ) is 10k
  • 2 1
 $3399 CAD is $3475 US - so this frame will most likely be £3475 in the UK. Round that up to £3499.
  • 2 0
 You should take into account that devince will raise the price for the UK to cover shipping ect. But seriously even then it will only be about £2500 (I hope). I want one already
  • 1 3
 So let me get this right.... in Brazil a pedal bicycle can be $33 000 CAD ?
  • 1 0
 You are missing VAT etc.
  • 13 0
 We have some Brasilian people that come to my LBS during the MSA world cup every year, they go apeshit and buy like 5 sets of everything
  • 1 0
 I think he is on about Brazil's currency, but that is still ALOT of money, considering 1CAD = 2 Brazilian Real
  • 3 0
 yea same, at my lbs too, apparently its cheaper for them to fly here, buy a dh bike, live in whistler for 2 weeks- a month than it is just to by the bike over there
  • 2 0
 In Brazil everything is more expensive, mainly because of tax and the people that bring the stuff over here want to profit like crazy. It's way more reasonable to buy from elsewhere and get it shipped over.
  • 1 0
 i sold a fork 888 to brazil once, it was aroung 250$ of shipping, but the guy told me it was still way cheaper than what people get there... :s
  • 1 0
 Hah, that was hilarious to read rejean.
  • 1 0
 I got you, same here, but the important thing for AVE. Poor riders like me when we see carbon frames is, finally how much will go down the price of the alu frame so i can afford it 3 3
  • 2 0
 Anyone have any idea about specs? Are they going to release a Zee version? I'm pretty disappointed the new Glory doesn't have Zee, or carbon. I can't be the only one who thinks Zee is the way to go - pimp and affordable...
  • 10 0
 very nice paintjob, not too flashy, not too understated. Smile
  • 2 0
 They had to cover the frame in carbon weave though...and not just leaving it looking unidirectional!
  • 2 1
 Would look awesome in matte black or raw carbon with gloss black decals IMO
  • 8 0
 ... I think im in love....
  • 14 6
 I see lots of marketing bull$hit coming out of his mounth to make more $$$
  • 4 0
 somebody help me...
36lbs... is 16.4kg - in downhill race kit
if you swap to an air shock (- .4kg), eg double barrel air, and swap out the downhill tires for say some sticky minion EXO's tubeless... (- 1.0kg) then I have a bike that weighs 15.0 kg. That is only .4kg more than my Scratch with dropper post... and I ride that UP everywhere...
That is not thinking about swapping out for some other little this and that anal things....

F...ME!! I'm going big next year!!!! And riding it!!!

ok i admit maybe the tires are an issue.... but still f...me!! (thats to micayla :-) the world is becoming a better place !
  • 1 0
 36lb is not light, my alloy Mk3 V10 was that weight (Nukeproof is 38lb though, with steel spring) someone built a sub 30lb Session that could be raced. Now that is light!
  • 1 0
 I agree, my bike weights 35 pounds and its not carbon... light is >33

I think at least
  • 2 1
 i ride a 38pound bike and find it freaking ligth. all the 35ish bike i saw were not build to last, of built with AM wheels and stuff. If you have the wallet, go for it. i'll stick with a real full on DH bike at 38 (or the wilson at 36!)
  • 5 0
 I must be last century with the steam locomotives if my bike is 44lbs
  • 1 0
 There is a "human" threshold in my opinion, us mortals need a bit of mass under us when we ride. From what I can see most 6+ft pro riders keep the bike around 36 lbs for control?
  • 1 0
 lighter bike will bounce a bit more. it's about rotation inertia. (don't know how it's called in english). but you'll have a gain of control for tech stuff. you can compare this to riding a dirtbike. it heavy and you won't feel the bump much even at very high speed. The unsprung weigh is much much smaller thant the not unsprung weight.
  • 4 0
 The prices are very competitive, Trek and Specialized take note! Having a 2012 Wilson, I know what I am going to be doing in Jan 2013, sticking it on PB for sale and buying the Carbon version!
  • 8 0
 Sick read and bike!
  • 3 0
 Absolutely both true! Especially if the frame has a real lifetime warranty. Props to Devinci and Mike Levy! My only complaints are that I couldn't see all the geometry figures on an Android because of the layout, and I would prefer a bike with adjustable head angle, ala carbon V 10. Most average riders would be better off with a bike not as slack as what World Cup pros like Steve Smith ride, IMHO.
  • 1 1
 +1... ehat a GORGEOUS rig aye Also a great read into the tech and design ideas behind it. For someone who's been around since the beginning of "DH racing" and bikes, I'm simply AMAZED at where we've come over the years. What I'm really trying to wrap my ehad around is where we'll go from here aye. I thought the Demo was the pinacle of DH engneering years ago and now look what we have (the Demo's still amazing, but...)
  • 3 1
 I have a question about Carbon frames in general. How are they in terms of strength? I know that the carbon is strong in terms of breaking, but what about standing up to abuse like dings and dents from crashes and rocks and such? I know that carbon can become weakened by things like that as the fibers can be compromised. As a recreational rider that would be my concern with carbon frames. Are they still safe to ride after a big ding or gauge? Would that be covered by warranty?
  • 4 0
 Watch the Santacruz video, it will put your mind at rest (with a SC at least)...
  • 1 0
 betsie - are you talking about the one where they test it in their lab? With the rigs that have all the weight plates? I have seen that one but it didn't really address the issue of damage to frame. I have just read that carbon, due to its nature, can become compromised from a deep scratch or dent.
  • 1 0
The strength of an aluminum or chromo frame is not affected by these damages?
  • 2 0
 Np - To be honest I have no idea, it probably is to some extent, I just know that it's not critical if my frame gets a scratch or a dent. Aluminum is strong enough and malleable enough that a dent just kind of stretches the material which generally doesn't affect the structural integrity of the tubing. I'm just saying that based on what I know about carbon in general and what I've read, that deep scratches and dents can have a much more severe effect on carbon, due to the nature of the material being fibrous and more brittle with respect to impacts. I'm not knocking the carbon frame or anything, I'm really just asking a question about whether this might be a concern for these frames.
  • 4 0
 From what I've learnt in my first year of engineering, any sort of dent or fracture in aluminum or steel greatly reduces the strength as it increases the likelihood of crack propagation. I would assume this applies to carbon fibre as well, however, you have to take into account the multiple layering properties of the fibre. Even if the outside layer of fibre is cut, the layers underneath could still hold the frame together, as the crack would not propagate into the layer of fibre beside te cut one, to some extent. It would have been interesting in the Santa Cruz video to see a strength test after the frame was hit against the concrete pilliar. But also looking at how each frame broke, the aluminum frame was a clean cut as the crack propagated, or a bend along the same stress zones. When you look at a broken carbon fibre frame, while sure there is no ductile give before the frame brakes, look at how many strips of fibre are sticking out at the break. It took considerably more force as each strand still carries the weight of its broken neighbor. Also, under cyclic loading, aluminum is eventually going to fail no matter what. Carbon fibre and steel once past a certain load limit will undergo "infinite" loads before breaking. I beleive that carbon fibre is a much better, longer lasting option for a frame, and buying one, although more expensive than an aluminum frame, could potentially pay out in the end because they will last easily twice as long. My quite inexperienced $0.02.
  • 2 1
 Carbon fiber as far as i know is a matrix of two product : fiber and some sort of resing that hold all the shit together. The problem is if you break some of the fiber, you remove some strengh out of the frame. But in the same way, if you dent your aluminium frame, it will have a weak point. The big question is : wich one will become weak firt (you then have to consider doing impact test with different material shape and strengh and look at the results). I'm pretty dam sure if this survive Devinci labs, it can survive a couple of years of abuse. (devinci don't f**k around with their product testing)
  • 3 0
 Np - Thanks for your very scientific explanation.

Gab- thanks for your less than scientific explanation. "some sort of resing that hold all the shit together". Very nice. I like it.

I think you both make good points and I think really the bottom line would be how resistant is Carbon compared to aluminum. I mean at the end of the day any dent or scratch is going to cause some sort of weak point in both materials. The real question would be how big of an impact causes what kind of weak point in each. I'd love to see that kind of test which one would have to assume is being done by these companies.
  • 1 0
 i would gladly write my lab reports like that, but somehow i think the Phd who's going to read will laugh and pu "zero" in a red circle somewhere in the document :p
  • 1 0
 Who cares? How long do most people who buy bikes like this keep them anyway? Two years max is my bet.
  • 1 0
 i actually care. I think people who buy them right now keep them for a few years max. But people who don't have all the money will normally buy them in two year when the racers or the big guns will sell them. And the bike will be riden for far more than two years.
  • 2 0
 Just found a great video of Devinci's factory. They really do make their ally bikes in house, as in actually machine the machined parts and actually weld them there. Well shut my mouth. In this case, Made in Canada actually means Made in Canada

  • 21 18
 Stevie smith is just not human!........ He was sent from another planet to make everybody else look incapable of ridding a bike!! Wat a legend!!! Wat a devinci!!
  • 6 43
flag octalex1 (Sep 10, 2012 at 0:39) (Below Threshold)
 dnt u mean gwin?
  • 14 2
 @octalex1, pretty sure if he'd meant Aaron Gwin then he would have said Aaron Gwin. He said Stevie Smith because he is a incredible rider.
  • 5 5
 Y on earth have I been neg proped for that comment??!!......... for saying that Steve smith is an awesome rider!!

And it's just like "Denhamcommencal" said if I had meant Gwin I would have said Gwin!! But this is about Steve smith........... Or did you watch a diferant vid to everyone else!?
  • 9 4
 still no xl Frown

devinci builds bikes for dwarfs! :/
  • 3 0
 looks nice though Smile
  • 2 1
 how tall are you? I've heard Devinci's sizes are bigger than normal
  • 6 0
 Devinci's sizes are smaller, not bigger.
  • 5 0
 I'm 6ft 4 and have an XL 2012 devinci Wilson and it fits me perfectly
  • 1 1
 other end of the spectrum im 5 10 and it takes me ages to frind frames on pink bike that are the right size
  • 1 0
 Guys who are close to 2 meter tall, never find a bike that fits.... i have this problem all the time, not many frames come in XL or have a proper LARGE size, frames these days get smaller and smaller... the old Demo series size M is the same as the new style L. And there is no XL option on those...
  • 1 0
 there really was an xl foe 2012?

damn... the geo sheets for the carbon only state a large which i tried the 2011 of and it was to small.
  • 1 0
 tall guys should try out a LARGE makulu frame
  • 1 0
 They have built XL in the Aluminum version for 2012 I`m sure they will do that for Carbon too. How tall are you?
  • 2 0
 I'm 6'4" and feel like most LG size frames are like BMX bikes to me
  • 2 0
 i'm 6' 6" considering getting the new super long mondraker and running a regular stem on it haha.
  • 1 0
 6'3 riding a medium commencal... what are the size guidelines for the supreme dh v3? thinking its time to swap my frame to a large as i was 5'11 when I got it (yup people grow)
  • 1 0
 Definitely try the large Commencal. i got to try a large V3 last year and, i am about your size fits great.
  • 1 0
 woow for being short Big Grin hehehe, now feel spoilt for choice
  • 6 1
 when are they going to make carbon bikes affordable to the average man?
  • 14 0
 2050 ish
  • 5 3
 thenos09, you might not have wanted a long answer but I serve it anyways with good intentions only

If you think about it , and look around what happens with "the economy", inflation, unemployment. Then how much people there are on the planet, who sits on the money VS who doesn't ,how many are in debt, how much energy and time it consumes to have such a expensive bike while it is kind of unnecessary thing for your own survival - then mhm... Then you can observe the trends, stuff gets more and more high tech and only some of it falls down off "the rich" guys table (like Shimano Zee), and that high tech stuff gets only more and more expensive. There are things like some Chinese carbon rims for 150$ VS Enve rims for 900$, just like carbon frames from On One, Canyon VS DeVinci or Santa Cruz. But they are not the same as the high end stuff, there many ways to do CF, and some things are just uncomparable - bad carbon is lighter than alu but it is not nearly as compliant as high end stuff. Actualy On One 456 is reported to give over stiffened really shitty ride feel.

There's lots of other things I'm sure that will point out the simple answer - IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN, save money for normal stuff, it will be less and less affordable, sorry.
  • 7 0
 Got myself an YT Tues freeride (the 2011 version) in februari. It rides amazingly and it only costs €2100. brand new. the whole bike!
I guess as long as people are willing to shell out ridiculous amounts of cash for bikes, prices won't come down. If YT can sell awesome bikes voor €2100, and obviously still make a good profit on them, why can't other brands?
  • 5 1
 Yea YT has made some heads up there in the industry go "Hell NO" - I'm sure. It gives a good info on how much is the taiwanese stuff really worth no matter the badge on it. At the same time companies like Turner, CK or Hope let you know how much that should really cost. If Nuke Proof or NS charges more money for their hubs than SuperStar then ending up at price of Hope, then something is fkn wrong here...
  • 5 0
 By the way, at 6999$ MSRP the carbon wilson is only 200$ more than the old aluminium one. I think this is fairly low compared to TREK with their 10k sesion 9.9
  • 8 1
 Yeah the Trek seems like a rip-off, especially considering what a big company they. They are capitali$ing off Gwin's success is my suspicion, because they know rich, dumb people will want to have the same bike as the fastest DH racer ever. Love Gwin, but still HATE Trek.
  • 1 0
 Its also that the Trek was the first carbon rig to hit the market from one of the big companies outside of GT (which for some reason didnt get the same hype when it came out). I think now that all the other big name brands like Specialized, Yeti, Devinci, etc are all hitting the market with carbon, the competition iwll increase and the prices will come down.
  • 4 0
 YT and Nukeproof. Dh bikes for the masses, same engineering and quality (ish) for a fraction of the price.
  • 1 1
 Depending on technology used, the prices of CF frames might go down but not much. It is very easy to notice the differences between quality of alu frames, as they are next to none. Tues YT is nowhere less advanced technologicaly than Intense M9. However with CF things are not so clear to see and I doubt whether Nukeproof CF frame can match V10c. There too many kinds of CF weavings, too many ways of forming them into a frame (or kinds of forms) and impregnate them with resin, then to treat them then to paint them. Dunno about Wilson, but don't expect Tues Carbon to be any close to Session 9.9
  • 1 0
 Could not agree more. Everything carbon will always suffer from the reputation of those who play with carbon and those who know what they are doing. Easton carbon Dh bars, on my XC bike now and going strong 5 years on. mid range carbon bars.... 1 ride and they cracked, luckily noticed by someone post ride! Enve carbon bars should arrive this week, lets hope they are up to Easton's old quality.
  • 2 0
 I think they are right on the money for a Carbon frame. The Santa Cruz V10 is $3298 + tax, the Devinci above is $3399 + tax, The Tek 9.9 is $4409 + tax, the Specialized Demo Carbon is (I have no idea, can't seem to find it). In any case, when compared to some ALU frames (that easily go for around the $3000 or more mark) it's not bad.

It'll get better with time, eventually they'll phase out the ALU side of various bikes and just go carbon for ease of production.
  • 6 1
 An average man does not need high end carbon bikes.
  • 1 0
 High end carbon bikes are reputedly cheaper to produce than high end ally ones on decent size production runs. For this reason, everyone will go to carbon for most of their ranges over the next 20 years. 20 years ago aluminium was the new must have high tech material. Now it is much cheaper to build with ally than with steel. The same with carbon. I'll be surprised if there are many ally bikes being made when I hit 50 years old. I hope so anyway, they look so f'kin good compared to metal, in my opinion.

I've ridden a v10 carbon and a lot of Giant Maestro bikes, and some KHS VPP bikes too, and an Intense Tracer. I think VPP is much better at bump absorption than any single pivot design (but I haven't tried a Zerode yet). If I was faced with the choice between a V10C and this, I would have to go for the V10 simply becuase I believe the suspension system to be superior. The Wilson looks a lot better to me, I especially love the BB rotating control link and the banana swingarm. I believe the V10 with carbon back end will be a good amount more expensive than the Wilson Carbon though.
  • 1 0
 jaame - I don't know where you take your numbers from, but you might be right, I don't know. My sources say that the cost of the CNC form itself of V10c is at best, approximately 50 alu V10 frames, if we take Robo welding probably 100 or more. Material costs are waaaaaay higher than alu, a complete set of butted tubing and sheets for CNC for a frame from quality Alu from Reynolds UK costs 100€. I guess price in Asia for a high volume purchase lands under 1€ - where do you find a set of different types of weaving for that price?

Then the biggest cost will always be man hours and huh, even with shitty CF frame that will be longer than welding an alu frame by hand. Putting weaving together into a form if you want to achieve different (you need to cut them first out of sheets somehow) wall thicknesses? Then everything needs to cure. The list goes on and on. I know that with the use of cheaper inner form, good plastic bag, vacuum cleaner then file and sand paper, you can do a much cheaper version of CF frame - but it is not gonna work as well and still gonna take more time and money than robo-welded alu frame. Whatever you say it is damn more complicated than CNCing, welding and hydroforming of tubing.

I am sure though that while people are not yet familiar with CF, the margins and profits on those frames and components are way higher than on alu, so it is highly probable that making CF at the moment means good business!
  • 1 0
 We'll see next year. YT must be very confident because they will make the whole frame not just the front triangle like the other manufacturers out of CF and they claim that it will be 1kg lighter than the aluminium version. That means it will be as light as the Session 9.9. They are either insane or the big manufactuers have insane margins. seeing that yt is successful and the bieks are good I suspect the latter.
  • 1 0
 Again with CF, it is not only about weight/strength ratio. Aluminium or steel is very simple in that manner, you get certain tubing, you can deform it eventualy, then do your best by TIG welding it and, that's it - all metal frames are done this way. With CF you are not given anything, but the fact that you get sheets of weaving and resin, then you have 100% freedom to use it as you like - in a good way or something really really mediocre. For instance according to the aerospace guy I talked to, a vast majority of CF frames out there have almost a pound more of paint/graphics than is possible to achieve. But nobody wants to buy an ugly frame isn't it?

After a long talk with him I am not so sure about future of carbon being so bloody bright. If it is going to be as you guys predict, that they will push out alu, it is going to be the end of second hand market as we know it - so don't hope for it that eagerly. CF frames will loose value faster than alu or steel, they will also deteriorate in time faster than metal. A bigger scratch on alu frame, is just a scratch - on CF it will be a one fugly chip off that can develop into something serious.
  • 4 0
 I live in Taiwan and I love bikes. I don't work in the bike industry but I know a few people that do. I get all my information from them and they all say, independently of each other, that carbon is much cheaper to produce than aluminium on runs of 500+. Apparently a top brand carbon frame and subframe costs about $300 American to manufacture on that size of production run.

How? I don't know. I would guess the setup cost for a hydroforming process is astronomically high. As far as I know most frames are still hand welded, not done by robots, and the time taken for jigging up the tubing, heat treating and QC is longer in total than making a carbon layup by hand. Labour is cheap in mainland China too, which is where most carbon bikes are made I'm told.

I must stress that all of this is just word of mouth from friends. I do not work in a bike factory so I can't quote any actual figures, but the people I talk to have no reason to mislead me on any of this.

Also comparing the price of a top brand Taiwanese made and owned company in Taiwan to the price of the same bike in the UK lets me know that the importers/distributers/retailers over there are making an absolute killing on each unit sold (the taxman is too). I don't much like the idea of buying a bike for a price that keeps the execs of that brand flying round in helicopters. Basically what I'm saying is, certain brands prove that the rest are overpriced. While the Wilson Carbon is the closest bike to sex I've ever seen, no bike without an engine is worth $3300 American. When they bring the price down to something reasonable I'll consider it.

Amen to that.
  • 1 0
 Cheers for insight man! Wink

My poor knowledge comes from guys doing helicopters, sailplanes, and world's top notch RC models of all kind, so they only speculate on biking stuff, maybe if they would do a frame it would be waaay lighter? However when he saw the CNCd forms for V10c rear end he was quite impressed. Very unimpressed when he saw specializeds S-Works 29er in the shop, saying there's at least half of a kilo of paint and stickers on it.
  • 2 0
 That may also explain why GT doesn't bother to update the geometry of the Fury.
  • 1 0
 Funny you mention about paint being heavy. My uncle has a stunt plane and he talks about that a lot. A litre of paint weighs a kilogram, until it dries then it must be less. I think raw carbon looks better than painted anyway.

@tabletop I agree. They have to get the use out of the molds.
  • 1 0
 The aero engineer guy told me there is a way to apply very light weight vinyls and paint if you do it in the form, before laying up weaving into it, but it takes lot of skill, patience and certain bit of time. Everything ends up under outer layer of resin so there isn't even any need to clear coat the sht, just masking the joints of elements gets tough
  • 1 0
 I don't think I've ever wanted a bike more than I want this one. Mmmm, maybe the new Scott Gambler. God it's a good time to be into riding DH/bike parks. The current generation of bikes is amazing, bike park and trail design is taking off, and the stoke is shared by many.
  • 1 0
 Just watched the videos. 3 thoughts! Steve Smith is a cool guy, man. I love it how Dave Weagle's eyes almost pop out every time he says something cool or interesting. That frame flex cycling machine looks like some kind of crazy sex toy from a Japanese porn film!
  • 3 0
 Could I "borrow" one for a while for "testing" please? ...... Pretty pretty please?
  • 1 0
 I didn't read all the comments, so if it was brought up, oops! This is interesting on a DW note www.bicycleretailer.com/north-america/2012/09/07/weagle-sues-trek-over-suspension-patent
  • 1 1
 Ya ok i'll do penetration tests here in flatbush. Listen if you want to see how strong any carbon frame is ride it at plattekill bike park. We be there on the real steel bikes if you want to do another test. Someone should make a steel/carbon mix frame since it time to find out what really works.
  • 1 0
 Looks like all these DH / Freeride'ish rigs are finally starting to go on a much needed diet. Hope the prices trickle down too.
  • 2 0
 Its nice to see more bikes using concentric BB pivot arrangements to control the suspension.
  • 2 0
 I'm on the chairlift in the shot where he does the canadian open gap thing Big Grin
  • 1 0
 Remember last time DW came on Pinkbike and did a video and all these "engineers" ran their mouths about his designs? Glad they all got shut down last time and are gone.
  • 1 0
 Great - now I have to sell my house, my wife, the kids cause Daddy fell in love with a Devinci! Smile
  • 2 0
 sounds like porn music, lol.
  • 4 3
 Wow. That's artwork on wheels.
  • 1 0
 My dream bike, I'm in love!
  • 1 1
 Just swap out that chainring. Its fugly.
  • 1 1
 such a epic video of stevie!
  • 1 1
 This is beautiful Drool
  • 1 1
 This frame has my attention.
  • 1 1
 my favourite bike for the moment 3
  • 1 1
 Wow looks awesome (great lines) congratz Vinci Crew!!!!!
  • 1 1
 That paint is so sexy... mmmmmm
  • 1 1
 Dave weagle is a frickn genius with suspension and bike design.
  • 1 1
 i want it but i cant affort it Frown
  • 2 2
  • 3 1
 ..y !!
  • 1 1
 So much want
  • 1 1
 great bike
  • 1 1
 so clean...
  • 1 1
  • 1 3
 Too stiff. Why is that bad again. I want zero play .
  • 2 0
 dave is very good in translating material-mix challenges into a positive marketing message (better handling in loose corners) ...i think its an engineering issue: they still use two different materials aluminium and carbon fibre, what you want is to match the mechanical properties of the big aluminium piece sitting where all the stress is otherwise you end up breaking frames...
  • 4 0
 If you look at equipment used in many action sports you'll find that ultimate stiffness isn't the goal. Yes, it needs to be quite stiff, but zero deflection isn't necessarily a good thing (or possible). The example that I often use is from MotoGP, where the rear end/swingarm's have a certain (likely small) amount of designed-in flex that allows it to absorb bumps when the bike is leaned over, a position where the suspension can't help. The same can be said in many forms of auto racing, where the chassis needs to be able to flex.
  • 1 0
 agreed...a frame has to be able to absorb energy->resulting in being better on the hands (like stevie mentioned) ...its too complex to discuss anyway
  • 4 0
 motorbikes went super stiff around 10 years ago, they changed as too stiff is a bad thing, as explained in the video. Engineering is often about compromise, what appears best is not always the case.
  • 4 0
 flex can help with traction. if something it too stiff itll just get bucked around, if its got SOME flex it can compensate and keep planted on the ground and smooth some stuff out
  • 5 0
 DW explained it quite well in the video interview. They didn't design 'play' into the bike, they designed specific flex as required. The suspension system can only soak up bumps / hits in one plane. In simple terms, if you always rode straight ahead without the bike leant over, you could have a really stiff frame and let the suspension so all the work (although even then it would probably feel very harsh). When you corner, you're pushing down into the ground (vertically) as well as pushing into the corner compressing the suspension. The suspension can only cater for forces in the direction that is is designed, so for anything off axis (all that weighting of the outside pedal we keep learning about), you need some flex otherwise it becomes too stiff and is a real pain in the arse to ride. This has been a big element of motorbike chassis design for many years, and there's plenty of engineers out there who would make their living just designing chassis systems for the right amount of flex.

What the video above does tell you is that this isn't just an ALU frame made of carbon, it's been tuned specifically to achieve specific results which will be great for the consumer. There won't be any 'play' in the bike, but there will be designed flex that, if we believe the speak, should feel really nice, especially when cornering.
  • 1 1
 If Mr DW has built the perfect bike (like he had with the Sunday if you believe what he says), then there is no need for another bike.... (tongue in cheek comment)
  • 1 0
 well that all makes sence. i gues its better to build flex in to avoid wheels from taking it all.... i still hate flexy bikes but im positive that if it was me riding this bike i couldent get it to flex at all.. just WC riders in high speed turns
  • 1 0
 I'm actually glad he mentioned what he did about it becoming too stiff.

As other have pointed out, we learned that lesson in motorcycles already (It was actually more like pre-season '93 in the 500cc days. Yamaha hit this wall hard!) when both frame AND tire AND suspension makers were both independently making things stiffer and stiffer and stiffer. Frames with no flex and super stiff sidewalls. The result being that there was no COMPLIANCE(!) anywhere in the system to deal with small bumps. The result being that the tire just bounced off. In a series of small bumps, the tire would never be able to regain traction because the system was never supple enough to allow it to stay in contact with the ground.

The question of stiffness vs compliance is also significant with cars and for all the same reasons.
  • 2 0
 Also if you bottom out hard I thik you would like to have some flex rather then bottoming out with something stiff and hveing a jarring affect.
  • 1 4
 What is the steve's helmet?
  • 3 6
 haha, wet noodle Smile
  • 12 0
 ...in your pants.
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