It’s protected to say this Unicorn Cycles titanium time trial bike prototype is about as uncommon as its namesake. So wild is it the truth is, that I in all probability wouldn’t have believed it existed, had I not really seen it. However it’s actual. And it’s really the second race-proven ti TT prototype from the wild thoughts of Unicorn-founder & newbie racer Jason Turner.
He’s additionally bought a lot extra standard and reasonably priced customized titanium Unicorns on provide – together with street, gravel, mountain & fats bikes. Plus, he’s simply added Categorised Powershift drivetrain choices as nicely, more likely to be a few of the most reasonably priced customized builds with these modern 2x internally geared hub methods…
Unicorn titanium time trial bike prototype
Unicorn Cycles is a small US firm that designs & sells reasonably priced customized titanium bikes of all sizes and shapes, imported from a few trusted contract framebuilder workshops in Asia. A lot of their common bikes look to be low-cost reproductions of run-of-the-mill spherical tube street & mountain bikes. However Turner can be an unabashed time trialist, and completely satisfied to experiment.
That white-sided bike is gen 2, however let’s take a fast look again at gen1…
Turner says the thought for the wild ultra-distance TT prototype was impressed by old skool beam bikes just like the Softride Rocket and TitanFlex, after all with a dose of Trek Y-Foil thrown in too – actually bouncing round his head in 2019.
So he designed his personal ti-Y beam bike with an adjustable telescoping toptube that gave him large flexibility within the place of his saddle, plus precise tunable flex/suspension between the rider and the inflexible spine of the bike. And he had his common Asian (seemingly Chinese language?) body provider flip it into actuality.
The end result was a reasonably rough-around-the-edges proof-of-concept body that Tuner rode on ultra-endurance time trials all through 2020.
Then it was completed off with a fairly neat set of customized titanium bullhorn basebar with an built-in stem, plus customized ti ski-bend extensions, and naturally a ti seatpost.
He mentioned its rear finish was fairly stiff, coupled with the specified flex on the saddle and a sense of slicing by means of the air. However there’s all the time fine-tuning to be made…
Btw, Unicorn Cycles’ motto is: “Don’t purchase an off-the-rack bike! Personal a Unicorn, and experience one thing F*cking magical!” I kinda love that.
Ti TT prototype v2
After which by spring 2021, this v2 prototype was prepared.
With what seems like a simplified design and extra exact execution, the brand new v2 it TT prototype bought polished tubes and a high-contrast white Cerakote end for the brand new aspect panel design. Actually, what isn’t getting Cerakote-d as of late?!
The brand new bike was upgraded with thicker titanium aspect panels for improved stiffness and higher ending, a transfer to angular tube shapes vs. these unique swooping curves, a revised & simplified telescoping toptube clamp structure, and decreased toptube flex total for improved effectivity whereas driving. It additionally moved the inner cable routing behind the headset to get them out of the wind.
This newest prototype retains the stiff dropped chainstay rear-end design of the unique – with 12mm thru-axles & chain keep flat mount disc brake – however will get a extra refined customized fabricated seatstay junction. Unicorn additionally prefers to construct bikes with easy 1x drivetrains, however this v2 prototype builds within the choice for a entrance derailleur.
Will there be extra titanium ultra-endurance TT bikes from Unicorn Cycles? Solely time will inform.
However there’s loads of extra standard bike choices too…
Unicorn reasonably priced customized titanium bike frames
Not each bike that comes by means of Unicorn Cycles is sort of so wacky… though it may very well be in order for you…
They promote a restricted variety of inventory titanium gravel frames with 50mm tire clearance and loads of accent mounts in a fairly broad 6 measurement vary (XS-XL) for simply $1150, or from simply $325 extra together with a Rodeo Labs fork & Cane Creek 40 headset.
They usually customized construct a lot of extra standard street bikes, hardtail mountain bikes, and even fats bikes from 3/2.5 titanium. Street & gravel frames promote for simply $1450 & mountain frames for simply $1550, with 15-week turnaround, with full bike builds usually within the $3200-5000 vary.
Now lower-cost ti bikes with Categorised Powershift, too
And now Unicorn has joined the rising ranks of motorcycle makers constructing with Categorised Powershift modified drivetrains – turning 1x bikes again into stealthy, faster-shifting 2x setups. Sticking with their reasonably priced ethos, Unicorn is inclined to begin with a mechanical 1x groupset and even mechanical disc brakes like on this all-road demo bike.
It nonetheless prices $2400 for a set of Categorised carbon wheels with their wi-fi digital shifting 2-speed hub and cassette, so it’s not going to come back tremendous low cost. However deducting the price of a regular wheelset & cassette, you may have the ability to experience away with a titanium Unicorn with Categorised shifting for someplace within the $5000-6800 vary.
That’s going to be presumably cheaper than the inventory carbon Rose Backroad X Categorised, plus an improve to a customized titanium endlessly body & carbon wheels. Most likely price a better look, proper?
However… you understand what you really need, is a kind of TTi-Y bikes…