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With his FABIKE project, Fabio’s goal was to create a “high-end urban bike with innovative solutions.” The name stands for Flexibly Adjustable Bike, and the versatile  7075 aluminum sliding vertical dropouts with titanium locking bolts are the core of his frame design. A few other singlespeed/ fixed gear bikes, Lynskeys for example, have sliding vertical dropouts to allow for chain tensioning, but the FABIKE dropouts are slightly different as you can see in this video. Fabio explains the dropout design on his website:

“For the first time you will be able to change the dropout spacing from 120 mm to 130 mm in order to mount different kinds of hubs onto the frame. But, this is not all. The FABIKE dropouts have vertical insertion. This means that you will be able to mount the rear wheel as easily as on a road frame, without the need for a chain tensioner as the two dropouts will be able to slide horizontally, obtaining optimal chain tensioning. Additionally, the sliding factor is regulated by a high-precision micro-adjustment
integrated inside the frame.”

The easy hub spacing adjustment is interesting, as is the micro adjustment wheel.  I’ll be interested to see if the system works in practice as well as it does in the rendered animation though. Hopefully Fabio will have a prototype soon to prove his concept and I can follow up in a future post.

Posted in Concept, Road.

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23 Responses

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  1. Ἀντισθένης says

    The dropouts are great! In fact, long overdue. The colours are horrid, and I am far from the only fixed/singlespeed rider who won’t buy a frame unless it is steel. Alas.

    • Fabio says

      Hi Alas, and thanks for your comments. You know the color choice is something very personal. Anyway, we are working to add more colors in the future.

  2. Albert the fifth musketeer says

    By changing dropout spacing and hubs, surely the chain line will be fouled?

    • Fabio says

      Hi Albert, no, the chainline is not going to be a problem. On the market there are single/fixed hubs with different chainlines (42 mm, 43.5 mm, 45 mm etc…) and our crankset has a chainline of 43.5 mm which would work fine with all of them. Of course no problem with a 10 gears road hub, and our single ring crankset would even be able to use properly ALL the 10 gears unlike the common road bikes.

  3. Nick F says

    I’ve heard that an important reason for using horizontal dropouts on a fixed gear is that the rear wheel is being pushed downward during hard braking. These dropouts need an “retention ridge” (like a front dropout) to prevent that from happening

    • Fabio says

      Hi Nick, thanks for your clever comment.
      The images and video you have seen have the aim to explain how the dropouts work, but they are not final in every little detail. So yes, there will be the retention ridge on our dropouts to make them absolutely safe.

  4. Champs says

    Speedhound Bikes already have a dropout/hanger system that allows any standard OLD. On the drive side, it’s fixed to a plate that joins a split stay for belt drive.

    • James Thomas says

      Thanks for reminding me about Speedhound, Champs. I posted about those frames after seeing them at Interbike a few years ago, but I forgot about them as I was writing this post. Their system does allows for different hub spacings, so that would not be a first for the FABIKE.

      Any of you who have not seen it can read more about the Speedhound Dropout System here.

      • Doug Curtland says

        I like the black natural carbon look, and as I’ve been reading, it is a better material versus aluminum or some other more exotics. The thing that frightens me is that carbon bikes for around 14-pounds and under are all wearing price tags of $8k USD and up, like the Jamis Xenith for example, so I’m not too optimistic about this one’s price tag either. Yeah sounds like a bike for rich urban boys and girls. Not for me. It would be cool though to have a bike that light and versatile, so I can sell my old Scott CR1 2008 and my reliable Vigorelli. They were fun, but my flat is too small, and I’m looking for more utility and flexibility now. I currently teach English to VIPs in Moscow, and we pretty much live in the metro here at least during some part of the day. Carrying a bike to and from is an annoyance and mentally tiring. If I can swing a reasonably-priced bike to tote around, I’m in. I couldn’t find this on kikstarter yet. JT do you have more info about the street price with this? Additionally, what would it cost to get to Moscow? Where would it ship from?

        • Fabio says

          Hi Doug,
          you are right, the starting price for a road race bike of 14-pounds is 8K (if you are lucky). The FABIKE in 10 gears configuration is in that range of weight (and lighter in the other configurations), but don’t worry, not in that range of price.
          Of course considering the materials and the innovative technology you can imagine that the retail price can’t be 1K like a regular city bike.
          We are not yet giving precise numbers but let’s say that it will be somewhere between 1K and 8K, but quite closer to 1K than 8K ;-)

          • Doug Curtland says

            Cool! If you guys can keep the price between 3 and 4k, I’m in!

    • Fabio says

      Hi Champs, yes you are right, we are not the first to develop a changeable spacing system. What we have been trying to do is to find an optimized way to combine the possibility to change the spacing with the “slidability” of the vertical dropouts (also for the fixed/single hubs). In this way we think people would have even more handiness in choosing/changing the rear wheel. Thanks a lot for your interest in FABIKE.

  5. jasper says

    This micro adjustment chain tension system is commonly used on motorcycles to bring the chain on the right tension. So this system is not new at all, but maybe new for the bicycle world…

  6. Fabio says

    Yes Jasper, you are totally right, the micro-adjustment is nothing new. The new thing we think we have dome is to put together some vertical sliding dropouts, the possibility to switch from 120 to 130 mm spacing and the micro-adjustments in a bicycle frame. Anyway guys, I would invite you not to focus only on the dropouts but also on the other features of the bike, like the geometry, the components etc. Everything has been thought to be optimized for the urban use. I thank you all a lot for your interest and feel free to write me directly if you have any questions.

  7. Flashlab says

    To be honest the vertical insertion of wheel axles in horizontally sliding dropouts is found on a lot of Rohloff hub gear bikes as well and the micro adjustment is found Ghost hub gear Trekking bikes too for example.

    So except for the dropouts we’re basically left with a standard road frame with different options for brake and gear shifting cable guiding.

    I don’t want to sound too negative but if you’re going to ask people money through Kickstarter and want to have a patent on the frame (like it is mentioned on your website) I think you need something more different and innovative.

    You claim ultimate urban use. For a lot of West European cyclists this means mudguards, lighting and possible luggage carrying too. Maybe you can focus on some of those aspects to differentiate your design from standard fixie trend?

    • Fabio says

      Hi, and thanks for your comments.

      Let’s say first of all that the ultimate urban bike doesn’t exist and it will never exist (we do not claim it). What we are trying to do is to improve and wider the urban bicycle market.

      As said in the post above none of the single characteristics of the dropouts (vertical sliding dropouts, the possibility to switch from 120 to 130 mm spacing and the micro-adjustments) is unique itself, but it’s the first time they appear together in the same dropouts.

      Apart the dropouts, I would like also to focus on the geometry of the frame. If you have a look at the geometry chart you would notice something that is not present in any road or track carbon bike, the possibility to use up to a 700×35 tyre. This is clearly a choice oriented to the urban use and it would make the bike a 4 seasons bike, but still keeping a “road look”. Of course the choice of the carbon fiber is not only a look choice but gives the possibility to have an extremely light weight, important not only for the riding but also for the handling/caring in the city (example: stairs).

      About mudguard and lights, we really did not feel like designing another mudguard or bike light. The market is saturated of products of third parties with universal mount possible to be used on any bike. Just choose one of them, the FABIKE will be perfectly able to welcome them.

      I do not take any comment like negative, but rather like an opportunity to explain even better what we have done and how we have in mind to improve the urban cycling market, far from any kind of trend. So, Thanks!

  8. Michael Aknum says

    Wow, this is seriously cool. I love the color selection for these frames. You think these will ever go into production? I’d love to get my hands on one of these.

  9. Fabio says

    Hi Michael, and thanks for your appreciation.
    Yes, hopefully this will be soon all real. The whole project will be on Kickstarter in few weeks to collect funds and start the production.
    Stay tuned, and if you feel like pledge the project and be one of the very first people to ride a FABIKE.

  10. Jamey says

    The amount of attention given to “high-end” commuters, excuse me, “urban bikes,” is retarded. Urban means locking the bicycle outside while one grabs an artisanal espresso or shops for contrasting brocade for his bespoke single-breasted peak-lapel suit and, not just riding it to look cool.

    But good luck, Fabio. There’s no shortage of suckers for you.

    • Fabio says

      Hi Jamey, I see what you mean.
      You know, our aim is to bring on the market a good and meaningful product with the intention to improve cycling. But then we can’t decide that people should do with that and with what intention.
      Anyway, thank for your wishes, very appreciated.

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