Thursday, July 24, 2008
Another day, another brutal blindside attack on the defenseless seatpost clamp.
This time it came from those crazy folk over at FBM, who went a new route, drilling a pair of holes straight through the seatstays and lopping off the top of the seattube.
(Don't worry, the seatstays were eventually welded to the seattube. I hope.)
While this is indeed a new route for BMX, it's long been a method used by manufacturers of steel road frames from this classic Cinelli:
to this brand-new Scapin:
I'll be curious to hear how it works in a BMX application, especially with the larger stays.
Personally, I remain a fan of seatpost clamps, for reasons stated here. I'm in favor of frames being kept as simple as possible so a small part breaking doesn't wreck the whole thing. Then again, I also like the fact that some companies are using tech borrowed from boutique road frames, like Deluxe and their dome-ended stays. And at least FBM's SPC-murdering design looks a lot sturdier than the good ol' two tabs welded on the back of the seattube.
I e-mailed John Paul at FBM to ask whether the clamp would be internally threaded (bad) or use a captive nut (good). This was part of his response:
"That one is threaded, but we are going to go for a captive nut, we should be able to sort that out. We thought of it to put on my Sword. It was a prototype and the seat tube was 26.8 and super, super thin walled. For some reason at the trade show we put a pivotal on it with a shim, after I started riding it the seat tube got mangled and actually started to "rip" and basically the top needed to be lopped off. Dave was going to weld a small section back on, we decided to remedy it with this instead. If my bike wasn't mangled, we would probably never have thought to do this. I've always liked road bikes with this style seat binder in its different variations."
Another day, another one-off design, another perfectly logical explanation. This stuff keeps up, I'm gonna have to find something new to write about.