Orbea’s top carbon road, mountain, and even eMTB bikes all just got lighter thanks to a new raw custom finish as part of their long-running MyO program. Aptly dubbed Raw Carbon, by getting rid of almost all vestiges of paint, the top tier Orca OMX, Alma, Oiz OMX & Rise carbon frames shed grams in a new stealthy look that reveals the complexity of their carbon fiber layups.
Orbea’s gram-saving Raw Carbon custom MyO finishes
We know now that paint adds weight, but how much does it really add?
Other manufacturers have told us that a dark paint job could be as light at 100-125g in total, while a light-colored look that requires additional primer layers could be more than double that. But few carbon bike makers offer truly raw carbon finishes for a couple of reasons…
One, paint helps hide any non-critical voids or imperfections where the variability of one ply of carbon intersects with another. So without paint to hide behind, Orbea must put in even more attention-to-detail than usual in crafting these frames, likely why the raw look is only offered on their four top models. Still, some areas of these ‘raw’ bikes will get small amounts of carbon-matching paint.
Paint also protects the frame, both from regular wear & UV-exposure. Proper resins can serve much the same purpose these days, like we see from several carbon component makers whose products come straight out of the mold. But Orbea still puts either a glossy or matte clearcoat over the top of the Raw Carbon and graphics, to give the frames a deeper look and protect the graphics.
The result though, is weight savings of 80-100g per frame depending on the model, vs. Orbea’s lightest standard paint schemes.
Custom finish – Options & availability
Raw Carbon finishes are available now in Orbea’s MyO online customization tool as the Main Frame Color when you create your own design for a new Orca OMX road, Alma XC hardtail, Oiz OMX XC full-suspension, or Rise trail eMTB. That means that you still get to fully customize logo colors and add any of the other MyO graphics options, too. Plus, the lightweight Raw Carbon look won’t even cost you any more than the standard paintjobs. You are already are starting from Orbea’s most expensive framesets in the first place.
What’s the down side?
Added lead times.
When I tried to customize a raw Oiz, MyO tells me I’ll wait until next September to get the bike, or at least July for an Orca. Yikes. No word yet if Orbea’s carbon aero road, gravel, or e-road bikes will also get a lighter raw option in the future, too.