Canadian-based Argon 18 has updated its range for 2012. We popped down to importers i-ride’s headquarters last week to check out the latest frames that look set to cause a stir next year.
The brand was formed by Gervais Rioux , one of the most successful road racers in Amerca with over 150 victories to his name. During the 1990s Rioux turned to running a bicycle shop, and Argon 18 started as a house brand. It’s steadily grown from humble beginnings to become a recognisable brand today.
There’s three models in the road range, starting with the Krypton and moving on to the Gallium and at the Gallium Pro at the very top.
The flagship Gallium Pro features a 7000 high modulus carbon monocoque frame with massively sculpted and oversized tube profiles, especially around the bottom bracket, the downtube and the chainstays. The top half of the frame, the top tube and curved seatstays, are altogether more svelte and slender affairs for on the road comfort.
A novel feature across the range is the 3D headset. To offer customers a wide degree of handlebar height adjustment, and rather than relying on lots of spacers, Argon 18 developed a unique system. A threaded aluminium sleeve pressed into the top of the head tube receives one of three top caps, meaning the position can easily be adjusted. It’s also a more rigid system claims Argon than traditional headset spacers.
The new monocoque uses a conical steer tube with 1’’1/2 and 1’’1/4 bearings and features an integrated crown race that boosts rigidity while reducing weight. Details include a replaceable forged rear derailleur hanger and braze-on front mech mount.
Frame weight for a medium is a claimed 920g.