Just a few months ago Bikerumor checked out Htech’s wood-framed Aeriform endurance road bike, but it looks like the company has something new up its sleeve already. While they initially touted their all-wood ONEFRAME monocoque construction, Htech has since decided their frames would be better with some carbon in the mix.
The company says wooden bikes are typically thought to be heavy, flexy and weak but they seek to change that mindset. By introducing carbon fiber pieces to the structure, they claim to have achieved a difficult balance of creating a strong, stiff frame that provides unmatched ride comfort.
SCR is Htech’s moniker for their new Selective Carbon Reinforcement technology. All Aeriform and Aeriform Disc frames will now be built with the carbon reinforcements, which we’ll explain in more detail below…
Htech says with modern materials and construction wooden frames can be made just as strong and stiff as carbon frames, but offer a more comfortable ride than steel. Wood can also be made into highly aerodynamic shapes, but Htech admits every material has its weakness. Wood isn’t the lightest and it can split along its grains, thus they decided to incorporate carbon fiber reinforcements because in their simple words “it makes everything better.”
In varying thicknesses, weaves and strand directions carbon reinforcements are bonded into the wood frame. Htech places each piece carefully to maximize strength, stiffness and weight reduction yet maintain the soft ride their wood frames are known for.
The SCR frames’ seat masts are reinforced with a carbon tube, which is joined to a carbon PF86 BB shell. The head tubes also use a carbon fiber inner sleeve that’s bonded to machined aluminum headset cups. All remaining frame tubes are supported by an inner layer of UD carbon fabric, and the carbon is laid across the wood’s grain to prevent splitting and increase torsional stiffness. The frame’s joints, dropouts and any holes (such as bottle cage bolts, internal cable guides) are also reinforced with carbon fabric.
Htech’s design concept plays on the advantages of each material- the carbon reinforcements add strength and stiffness while keeping the frame weight down. The wood provides ride comfort, and of course gives the bike a natural, eye-pleasing aesthetic.
Htech’s frames are individually made for each buyer, so you can choose between predetermined standard specs or customize the sizing, geometry, wood type and even ride characteristics to your preferences. They say their wood/carbon frames are comparable weight-wise to a quality steel frame, but exact weights will vary depending on the build specs.
The carbon-reinforced Aeriform Disc frame is currently selling for a special introductory price of approx. $2440 USD, and the Aeriform model can be had for $2270. Complete builds are also available, but you’ll have to ask Htech about specs and pricing. Check out their website for more info or to place an order.