© Atherton Bikes 2019

How we build your bike…

 

 Our frames, optimised for light weight and high strength, are constructed from titanium lugs joined to proprietary carbon tubing. It’s a deceptively simple construction method for something that’s so cutting edge. 

Step 1 - Submit your personal specs

The first step is down to you. Input your height, arm span and inside leg measurements to the website (coming soon). Our algorithm will deliver two options, the closest fitting stock size (we have 3-4 times more sizes than other bike companies) or an individualised option where your frame is customised to fit you to the millimetre.

Step 2 - CAD design

Your personal specification is output as a finished design file to our partners at Renishaw who build the titanium lugs for us on their new multi-laser, high productivity, RenAM 500Q AM machine. The process is entirely digital and requires very little tooling so the lugs tailored in CAD can be built to your order.

Step 3 - Lugs manufacture

It takes the AM machine about 16 hours to make a lug set for one bike, laying down about 3500 layers of titanium powder that’s melted by four lasers on to a titanium build plate.  Lugs are then heat treated and  removed from the build plate before bearing seats are machined and threads cut. They are then inspected by a coordinate measuring machine (CMM) and finally shot-blast for a good surface finish.

"It takes the AM machine about 16 hours to make a lug set for one bike, laying down about 3500 layers of titanium powder that’s melted by four lasers on to a titanium build plate"

Step 4 - Frame assembly preparation 

The lugs are delivered to our workshop, hand finished and the carbon tubes that will make up the frame are cut to size. The tubes arrive in 3m lengths, and were designed by us for specific loads, strength and stiffness characteristics in different parts of the frame. Our tubes are straight to maintain optimum fibre alignment and are round or oval for maximum robustness.

 

Step 5 - Frame bonding

To assemble the frame we use double lap shear joints which are insanely strong - the frame is designed not to fatigue but can also take a landing in excess of 12G… A fighter pilot blacks out at 9G…  

Imagine trying to pull a strip of sellotape off a table – you lift it up right? Our joints make that impossible – imagine how much harder it is to have to pull the tape off straight?  ​To achieve the bond we fill the joints with adhesive from the bottom, slides the tubes in using a proprietary jig to keen everything parallel, before finally cleaning the excesses adhesive off. with 99% alcohol! 

Step 6 - Frame finishing and shipping

The adhesive is left to cure, checked, painted, assembled with bearings and shock, then checked over one more time, before either being ready to ship to you or for us to build into a full bike.