Bowman Palace:R frameset

Kent-based Bowman nail the 'difficult second album'

Kent-based Bowman had quite a task when they set about improving the original aluminium Palace race frame. It must be quite a daunting challenge when the first generation frameset was rated so universally highly, but then that’s what engineers are supposed to get their fix from, isn’t it?

With the Palace:R, you could argue that Bowman, founded only in 2014, have taken a more revolutionary, rather than evolutionary, approach to improving the Palace frameset. Where some brands tweak things here and there, wholesale changes have been made practically everywhere, except the geometry – which fans will be relieved to know remains the same.

Now, much like that other highly-rated aluminium race bike, the Cannondale CAAD12, the Palace:R frameset is made of ultra-high quality 6069-standard aluminium tubing, with each having been completely re-profiled to provide inevitable improvements in stiffness and vertical compliance.

Bowman say the new tubeset actually saves up to 150g too, thanks to the shavings in thickness that have been made throughout.

RCUK 100 2017, Bowman Palace:R frameset

The chainstays are asymmetric, shaped into a triangular profile in order to keep power transfer as efficient as possible across the drivetrain portion of the frame, while the seatstays are thin and flat in order to allow them to flex without losing stiffness.

The seattube is also tapered in order to give the best of both worlds, with a shape Bowman have called ‘FlareSquare’. It describes how the tube widens and squares off as it gets towards the bottom bracket, providing the most efficient power transfer where it matters – ideal for those racy spurts you need to put in on the crit circuit or up a steep incline. Bowman have also opted for a 27.2mm diameter for the seatpost, which should also help boost compliance.

RCUK 100 2017, Bowman Palace:R frameset
RCUK 100 2017, Bowman Palace:R frameset
RCUK 100 2017, Bowman Palace:R frameset

Bowman Palace:R

Interestingly, they’ve also done away with a press-fit bottom bracket, instead opting for a threaded bottom bracket – a smart move which will please home mechanics. It should be more reliable and easier to service when the time comes while, at the front end, things are taken care of by a carbon fork with a tapered steerer.

In a neat touch, Bowman have also retained a classical look (despite the striking paintwork) by using external cable routing for mechanical groupsets (again, mechanics rejoice), yet also features removable ports specifically designed for electronic groupsets. The idea here is to make servicing easier if you’re still using cable-operated gruppos, while the wire-based – or, indeed, wireless in the case of SRAM’s Red eTap – require no such considerations.

However you set up your Bowman, you’re assured of a race-worthy chassis at the heart of the bike.

[monetizer101 search=’Bowman Palace:R’ price=’695′]


Selected for The RCUK 100 2017

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