"I thought, 'What if you just started with a clean slate, you put the wheels and the pedals and the seat where they normally should be?' … and started sketching around that," he told us at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show. "I really like graceful, curvilinear forms, and I came upon this."
Cargo had two creations on display at the show – a complete bike with a frame made purely of carbon fiber, and a frame made from a combination of carbon fiber and wood. The latter came first, and consists of three layers of laminated plywood that were shaped in two 3D-printed molds, creating the two sides of the frame. These were joined together in an assembly jig, after which everything was covered in a continuous layer of carbon fiber – hence the frame's seamless appearance.
The finished product reportedly weighs about as much as a traditional steel frame, and Ryan told us that it has a stiff, smooth ride quality.
"I wanted all this curvature to be dictated by the wood," he said. "If you try to force a 3D surface, it looks forced, but if you just let nature take its course and let it form over the few points that you give it, you'll come up with a much more beautiful form."
This is Cargo's first foray into bike-building, and while he's not making frames for paying customers just yet, it's definitely something he'd like to pursue in the future. He can be contacted via the link below.
Product page: Juliet Designs
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