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NAHBS News: Road – Boo:

Riding Discipline – Road

Boo Bicycles

Boo RS-R – bamboo tubes and carbon fiber joints This Boo RS-R is the company owner’s personal race bike for the 2012 season. It is meant to be the highest performance offering Boo has ever created. The full carbon seat mast, oversize down tube, and Press Fit BB30 are designed to optimize the lateral stiffness of the frame. The bamboo tubing has been carefully selected–only the most mature and dense stalks are used. The wall thickness is minimized through a hand-boreing process to eliminate the younger inner material and reduce the weight of each tube while maintaining most of the tube’s strength. The RS-R is designed specifically for Shimano Dura Ace Di2 with only a rear derailleur and single front chainring. The Di2 cable routing enters near the head tube and is not seen again until the rear derailleur, as the battery is integrated into the bottom of the seat tube to minimize the center of mass of the bike. The lower water bottle screw also acts as a set screw to located the cylindrical battery in the seat tube. A custom carbon fiber single front chainring (49t from Fibre-Lyte) is coupled with a Lightning carbon crank and Experimental Prototype carbon chain guide to minimize weight and maximize stiffness. One of three rear cassettes will be used (11-26, 11-28, 11-32) depending on the race course or for training. Because no front derailleur is necessary, the two shift/brake levers are now simply carbon brake levers without any shifting internals. They feature custom-made and wired buttons inside each hood: right selects a harder gear, while left an easier one. The removal of the front derailleur, the shifting aspects of the levers, and the cables that go along with it results in a significant decrease in mass, as well as reducing the possibility of a dropped chain. The racer no longer needs to look to see if he or she is in the big ring and no adjustment is necessary. The largest gear is acceptable for professional-level racing while the easiest gear is equivalent to a standard 39t front chainring with a 22t rear cog (assuming an 11-28 cassette). The rear brake cable is integrated into the top tube and actually pierces the seat tube before providing an integrated cable stop for the housing that takes it to the rear brake. The frame’s lines are uncluttered by shifting and braking cables, focusing the bicycle’s purpose and distilling its components to the bare minimum. The Boo RS-R is the culmination of over three years of design refinement and testing in professional races around the US. It is not simply a bamboo bike–it is a bamboo-carbon fiber hybrid which melds both manmade and synthetic composites to optimize the racer’s experience, no matter what the conditions.

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design/programming: todd@consumedesign.com