Costruire una bici leggera può essere divertente ma anche molto costoso. In giro ci sono però dei ‘nerd dei grammi’ il cui unico scopo è quello di costruire il mezzo più leggero possibile. La bici da strada più leggera mai costruita è opera del meccanico Gunter Mai. Questa stessa bici poi è stata ri-costruita da Fairewheel Bikes, un negozio di bici a Tucson, in Arizona, per essere ancora più leggera.
Building a lightweight bike can be fun but also very expensive. However, there are 'gram nerds' out there whose sole purpose is to build the lightest vehicle possible. The lightest road bike ever built is the work of mechanic Gunter Mai. This same bike was then re-built by Fairewheel Bikes, a bike shop in Tucson, Arizona, to be even lighter.
This 'pedal rocket' was originally built in 2008 and weighed just over 3kg at the time. Over time Gunter managed to lower his weight down to 2.8kg, but then he took everything apart and sold the parts to other weight fanatics in 2010. Thankfully most of the parts of the bike, especially the frame that was custom made, they were sold to someone who worked at Fairwheel Bikes, a shop that has a great reputation in the world of bicycle sick people, famous for building custom bikes and conceiving special projects.
Before Gunter's bike, Fairwheel had set the record for the lightest bike in the world with the M2Racer.
After nearly a year of researching the missing accessories and building new parts, starting with Gunter's original Spin frame the weight came to 2.7kg. Finished with minimalist black decals, the aim was to produce a bike that could be used almost exclusively for climbs.
The carbon frame, Gunter's original conception, was produced by Spin, a German company and was built by Marc Siebert, to tip the balance at an incredible 643.9g. Like the frame, the fork was also custom built, handcrafted by the German company THM weighing 185.9g.
The handlebar, the stem, the brake levers with their housing and the handlebar tape weigh 264.6g. The carbon handlebar was made by Schmolke, the stem is from NoRa, while the brake levers were built on the basis of Campagnolo Ergo controls. Schmolke also supplied the seat post, which is paired with a Tune Speedneedle saddle. The shift levers are classic but have been made of carbon fiber by BTP. In short, every detail has been treated with great class.
Lew wheels originally weighed 709.6g, Jason and his team replaced them with their own custom assembly using lightweight Ax rims, a prototyped hub from Dash, Pillar's titanium spokes and Tufo's specially made tubulars - the total weight of the two wheels became 583g. Fairwheel added AX Lightness Orion brakes with BTP race shoes, weighing 103.5g, while Gunter's previous brakes weighed 71.6g.
Fairwheel has changed the cranks, compared to those initially conceived by Gunter, the THM Clavicula, with a prototype of Myth from the Netherlands. The weight of the prototype is 281.4g compared to the 298g of the THM crankset. Other changes in the drivetrain were deemed necessary, such as the ceramic bottom bracket, with carbon fiber bearings made by Fiber-Lyte. The chain was changed to a titanium chain made in Taiwan by the YBN company. The pedals were changed to a pair made to measure by Aerolite, similar to the ones Gunter had fitted to his bike, but lighter. Fairwheel added the SRAM Red rear derailleur to the bike. The latter is heavier than the Huret / BTP derailleur that Gunter had chosen, while the front derailleur is a Campagnolo Record.