Victoire for Concours de Machines 2019
Victoire for Concours de Machines 2019
Once again, Victoire's team decide to compete for Concours De Machines 2019. This article combines all the informations published in our news section so you can have a nice overview of the complete project.
We have been brainstorming since february and we came out with a few obvious choices: this bike would not only show our savoir-faire, but we will also use it to explore some ideas, as a prototype to get out of our confort zone and test some new ideas. We will keep this bike in our showroom just like previous ones.
The rules of this competition brings out something important : this bike has to be dismountable. We already made this type of machine back in 2017. Combining Ritchey's Break-away system and S&S couplers has many assets, but also the downside of having to carry a specific key around. We all agreed to use this system again but making sure that the bike is entirely dismountable with a 5mm Allen key.
To get to that, we conceived our own couplers system in CAD design. The building was then made by a local company called Add-Up.
Add-Up, a Michelin's branch, specialised in additive manufacturing. As it is quite a recent and innovative precedure, the additive manufacturing can be related to 3D printing but this technology actually makes micro-welding with metal dust in order to build layers by layers. As a pionner and a leader on the market, Add-Up builds some unique and extremely strong parts, with superior mechanical characteristics than the moulded ones (like frame connections parts).
So we conceived five parts which have been made in Clermont-Ferrand in Maraging steel (alloy used to make Reynolds 953 stainless steel tubes among others). These parts replace a break-away or couplers system, with a local production. Add-Upp factory is a few kilometers away from our workhop.
Proud of our savoir-faire, we then made the frame the traditional way, with hand-polished weldings. The tubes from the frame and the fork are all from our italian friends : Columbus. Olivier was in charge with the building of the frame, while Luka was working on the fork issue.
The second point was about hands numbness after 90 hours on the handlebar. The common solution is to use some triathlon prolongateurs, elevated to get a confortable position, but this option doesn't look very nice and add some weight on the bike. To us it is quite simple : on a long distance bike with prolongateurs, the front is usually visually heavy, with a lot of tubes and panniers. So we tried to narrow down the amount of tubes by assigning them a maximum of features, according to "less is more" thinking, from Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe.
The result is a 100% unique piece, that is a fork, a stem, prolongateurs and luggage-rack all together.
We also added a constraint this year : reduce the amount of plastic pieces, and banish the carbon fiber. Our project is made out of recyclable materials, and we prioritized strong parts that are easy to fix. To save some weight, we conceived and made a maximum of components, and all that couldn't be made in our workshop has been modified as much as possible.
The frame building for Concours de Machines 2019 lasted two weeks, and represented a total of 50 hours of work for two frame builders. Despite the additive manufacturing parts, we had to make many small parts and details the traditionnal way. The frame is made out of Columbus Life tubes, and isn't heavier than a regular frame, despite the home made couplers system. Every little brazed parts are stainless steel, so we avoid any possible corrosion. Once again, the headtube is 1'' standard, despite the disc brakes system.
This allows to save a fair amount of weight from on the front of the bike thanks to the special fork's design.
THE MAKING OF THE FORK AND OTHER COMPONENTS
The fork building took as much time as the frame building did. A total of 45 hours were needed to build this fork set with multiple fonctions.
The idea of this part was to condense fork, stem, prolongateurs and luggage-rack in one whole piece. This incorporation technic allowed to save some weight, while keeping a 100% Columbus steel structure. This way we could save 400 grams with our special set with the integrated fork, against a carbon fork, luggage-rack, stem and aluminium prolongateurs set, with clean lines.
The different fork blades are seatstays from the Max serie. Their oval shape enhace the aerodynamism while improving the strenght. The fork's tee was conceived to match the seatstays' shape, and were made by Add-Up from our own sketches. The frame gate needed a few changes. We transformed a flat stainless steel model from Paragon in a shell model, so it could match the Son's hub.
This fork works as a home for a specific pannier, again home conceived but made by Helmut. We went in Chambéry to visit Rodolphe and make this unique pannier. The back satchel bracket was conceived and made by Olivier in our workshop.
The paint inaugurated our paint booth. First frame fully painted in Beaumont. We had just finished to install and make the last adjustments in time for the Concours. The bike was painted on tuesday, and we left for Rambouillet on thursday.