Remember that wild looking linkage bike that showed up at Crankworx in 2017? The Structure Cycleworks SCW 1 was a futuristic and unrideable prototype back then, but I did get to take out their rough proof-of-concept rig. That short-travel creation was aluminum, had more hoses than a fire station, and some pretty dated geometry... But it worked really well.
Even so, I wasn't expecting to see a production version of the bike, and certainly not a production version that looks nearly as crazy as that black and blue prototype, yet here is the carbon fiber SCW 1 that will be available this coming summer.
SCW 1 Details
• Intended use: all-mountain / enduro
• Rear wheel travel: 150mm
• Fork travel: 150mm
• Wheel size: 27.5''
• Integrated WTF linkage fork
• Frame material: carbon fiber
• Frame/fork/shock x2 weight: 13.5lb
• MSRP: $5,995 USD (frame, fork, shocks x2)
• More info: www.structure.bike
The SCW 1 has 150mm of travel at both ends, identical DVO shocks controlling that travel, and it's rolling on 27.5'' wheels. That frame, fork, and two-shock kit goes for $5,995 USD, and Structure will have complete bikes as well.
First, the basics: It's rolling on 27.5'' wheels, has 150mm of travel at both ends controlled by identical DVO Topaz T3 shocks, and it's clearly not even trying to look normal. The frame, integrated linkage fork, and the two shocks will retail for $5,995 USD. That's a big number, of course, but keep in mind that it includes a fork when you're doing the mental math comparisons.
The frame, fork, and two shocks weigh 13.5lb, which is a bit heavier than other high-end combos, but Structure said they wanted to build a "brick shithouse" of a first bike.
The bike on the left was an unrideable prototype they had back in 2017, while the aluminum bike on the right was their proof-of-concept.
The Canadian company knows they're up against it when it comes to the bike's polarizing looks that'll surely be an instant turn-off for many riders, but Structure Cycleworks' Loni Hull says they're aiming to convince people with its performance rather than its appearance.
Sure, but what's up with that appearance, though?
Equal parts praying mantis and mountain bike?
Structure refers to the bike's front-end as WTF (Without Telescoping Fork) and Hull says that while "normal" linkage suspension does do a decent job, integrating the fork with the frame is how to get the most out of the idea. But it's not like high-end telescoping forks suck right now, do they? ''There's only so much we can do to make forks maybe only a little bit better for next year, but it's all incremental improvement from maximum effort,'' Hull told me when said that to him back in 2017. ''We're designing with a clean sheet; we're looking at how to make a bike ride better for a rider. It performs well enough that I feel there will be a market for it with people who want something that's a quantum leap over the best of what's currently available in enduro.''
That leap, Hull said, is possible because the WTF front-end controls the bike's geometry. There's a big anti-dive factor, and the design actually adds trail while lengthening and raking out the front-end by as much as a whopping eight-degrees at full travel. All that should add stability, and stability means more control and more speed.
The funny looking nose linkage (left) is only there to transfer steering inputs. It's also carbon fiber, of course.
Structure has carbon'd all the things on the SCW 1, with the fork legs, both headtubes, the main linkage, the nose linkage, both the front and rear triangles, and the rocker arm all being made from the expensive black stuff. The two fork crowns are aluminum, though, as is the mini crown on the underside of the top headtube. That sentence sounds nearly as weird as the bike looks.
If you expected the bike's geometry to be way out there, you're wrong. It's running a 66-degree head angle (don't forget how much it changes), a 435mm rear-end, and the medium gets a roomy 470mm reach number.
For as wild as the SCW 1 is, the bike's rear suspension is a pretty straightforward Horst Link system that delivers 150mm of travel.