While it’s easy to assume, with widespread adoption of carbon fibre, that materials like aluminium have been consigned to the history books, there’s still a few companies investing in the material, proving that perhaps that there’s life in aluminium yet.
That certainly appears to be the case with the new KR510 frame from Kinesis, which was being shown for the first time at the London Cycle Show recently by distributors Upgrade Bikes.
While hydroforming shapes material at room temperature, the KR510 uses ‘Superplastic Forming Technique’, which involves heating the material before shaping occurs and is claimed to allow for more advanced tube shapes than hydroforming.
Kinesis is the first company to bring such a frame to the market, and as far as we know is currently the only manufacturer to do so. The company says: “…complex shapes will not compromise the tube’s structural strength unlike hydroforming. The result: more optimised shapes and less weight.”
Distributors Upgrade Bikes have had a hand in the development of the frame, with their experience of geometry meaning this bike should ride well. Five sizes will be available, and initially just the red and white colour scheme, with other colourways to follow. Weight for a 56cm frameset (incl. 385g fork, seatpost, clamp and headset) is a claimed 1,500g.
The price will be in the region of £550 for frame/carbon fork/selcof carbon post/headset/clamp, with availability expected February 2009.
More at www.kinesisbikes.co.uk