Radical-looking RoundTail bike

Mar 16, 2009
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Radical-looking RoundTail bike claims radically smoother ride/

If you banged a pole and a hoop against the road, which one would transmit more vibrations to your hand? Given that the flexing action of the hoop would absorb some of the energy, it's probably safe to assume that the pole would give you a numb hand quicker. Well, Canadian cyclist Lou Tortola applied the same sort of logic to the frame design of his Tortola RoundTail road bicycle. Where most other bikes would have a rear triangle consisting of straight seat stays, chain stays and a seat tube, the RoundTail simply has two shock-absorbing joined rings.
 
May 26, 2010
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krebs303 said:


Radical-looking RoundTail bike claims radically smoother ride/

If you banged a pole and a hoop against the road, which one would transmit more vibrations to your hand? Given that the flexing action of the hoop would absorb some of the energy, it's probably safe to assume that the pole would give you a numb hand quicker. Well, Canadian cyclist Lou Tortola applied the same sort of logic to the frame design of his Tortola RoundTail road bicycle. Where most other bikes would have a rear triangle consisting of straight seat stays, chain stays and a seat tube, the RoundTail simply has two shock-absorbing joined rings.
That logic fails because you are sitting on a pole via a saddle and the hoop is touching the road via the 2 wheels.

What he has done is add another hoop to the 2 existing hoops and you are still sitting on a pole. He has not taken away the pole. So there may be some more comfort but i cant imagine much more to warrant riding such an ugly bike.
 
Crazy

I'm all for crazy new designs that might actually work. Remember those beam bikes? they did what they promised with few negatives. (wiggly) Elegant design.

For me, the question is, does it actually provide a good deal of 'vertical compliance' to use the buzzword. Maybe you could do a similar design, but not so obviously unique at a lower cost to get the same effect?

I hope it's a huge hit. I like variety.
 
Jun 10, 2009
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krebs303 said:
If you banged a pole and a hoop against the road, which one would transmit more vibrations to your hand? Given that the flexing action of the hoop would absorb some of the energy, it's probably safe to assume that the pole would give you a numb hand quicker.
Depends very much on what they're made of doesn't it? I'll wager a wooden (or carbon fibre) pole will transmit a dull thud, whereas a rigid metal hoop will buzz and vibrate.
In reality this idea is even sillier than the analogy. A circle is inherently a very rigid design; a completely straight 'pole' is strong if loaded along its axis, yet off axis loads are likely to make the pole bend. Using a straight seat tube and chain stays and curved seat stays is from an engineering viewpoint more effective to accomplish vertical compliance at the seat while minimising flex in other areas.

When I want to ride a bike with suspension, this is my ride, but for the road I'm happy with a standard diamond frame.

OTOH, for amusement value this frame scores 7/10, I'd give 10/10 if he applied the same principle applied to the forks as well:D
 

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