Colnago was the first frame builder to see the potential of carbon fibre in the evolution of the cycling. He chose to match the latest technology with the concept of custom geometry frames. Muscular extension, flexibility and personal preference for position combined with aerobic and pedalling efficiencies are too many variables for a rider to be locked into the confinement of only a few frame sizes. This is why all the top Colnago frames offer lugged construction to fit all riders. Whether for one of the 130 Colnago-sponsored professional cyclists or one of the millions of demanding amateur riders around the world, there is a Colnago that offers the perfect fit. With this concept, Colnago takes age-old craftsmanship into the future.
Research and Method
Even with the vast availability of carbon fibre, there are a number of potential problems that can exist in the manufacturing process. Only with great investment in manufacturing technology can a carbon product be considered safe and reliable with no sacrifice to performance. The tubes of Colnago frames are built with an advanced filament winding system. This process, which is performed over a solid, stainless steel INOX core, yields a highly consistent wall thickness, even in cases where the tubes use intricate external and internal shape and structure. Moreover, thanks to the INOX “mirror treated” cores, all the different layers are compressed with extremely high pressures. This advanced process limits excess resin in the composite, reducing weight while increasing strength. This, plus advanced tube shaping and structure, yield the highest strength to weight ratio.
If to build a tube on a rigid core to be later removed is easy to imagine, to perform a complex structure as bottom bracket junction is pretty different and show problematic difficulties to be solved because of its shaped and because of all the different and simultaneous forces that come there together once in action. The fibres orientation, the nature of carbon type itself and the total control of the joining walls are the fruit of an exhausting research, laboratory and road tests. The carbon junctions of Colnago Frames are built by the same fibres of the tubes: made in Italy with the highest quality standards. As for the tubes are the sum of overlapped layers of unidirectional type alternate with variously oriented wefts. The interlaced layers are commonly named 1K and 3K, the best configurations to give homogeneity, strength and reactivity to a winning road bike. This comes over any aesthetic choices that some frame factory take without a real technical base.
Any detail makes the difference
Length and shape of the joining surfaces, layers an orienting of the fibres. Nothing is for nothing and everything is related to angles and dimension in any single frame to obtain the maximum homogeneity in reactions. The junctions of Colnago frames take shape around a special high density polymer to be manually destroyed after the polymerisation. This exclusive system makes possible to build a cave component with complex (multifaceted) shape without to renounce to press the stratified fibres under exceptionally high pressures, as it happens on the tubes.
Colnago and Frame Weight
The weight of the frame is a detail which is pushing unsafe products into the marketplace. The often unreliable and inconsistent traditional manufacturing process with carbon can produce end-products with often suspect yield and fatigue strength. Circumstances can lead inferior frames to not only crack, but can result in catastrophic failure without warning. Many processes used to lighten frame weight are simply not proven to be reliable. With technological application, it is possible to see frames in the marketplace with weights between 700g and 800g. These frames can be tempting to the consumer looking for the lightweight advantage. Colnago believes in a limit of 1000g. It is simply not worth sacrificing handling, safety and reliability for the negligible advantage of a few grams of static frame weight.
The comparison “Colnago is like a Ferrari”
The carbon fibre production in the entire Colnago 2013 product line is paramount in the marketplace. Not just the raw materials, but throughout the manufacturing process, no corners are cut. This is one of the most important considerations in the final price of a Colnago bicycle or frame. Another aspect is Colnago’s unwillingness to go outside of Cambiago, Italy for designing all aspects of the finest bicycles available. This is why Colnago offers a unique style matched with the most advanced technology. “Made in Italy” on a Colnago product truly means “Made in Italy”. Behind the Colnago signature lies the most meticulous and complex study of every aspect of the bicycle, from design table to final product. It is this investment in detail that make Colnago logo on bicycle analogous to the Ferrari Horse on an auto. This a comparison that Colnago welcomes with pride.