New bike company Kovit Cycles made their debut at Interbike this week. Based in Utah, Kovit manufactures unique and ultra-light bike frames featuring spider web-like IsoTruss grid structures in place of solid carbon fiber. The company appears to be a relaunch of the original Delta 7 brand started a few years ago by Advanced Composite Solutions on the back of licensing the IsoTruss technology from Brigham Young University.
IsoTruss takes the idea of a traditional 2-D triangle based truss and extrapolates that into a 3-D truss made up of pyramids formed by isosceles triangles. Stronger than steel at a mere fraction of the weight, the strength to weight ratio of the lattice design equates to faster and higher efficiency bike performance.
The highly symmetric and redundant nature of the IsoTruss structure means that a catastrophic fail is less likely and damage to once section can be easily repaired as opposed to replacing the entire frame. High stress areas are simply reinforced with thicker fibers and even more trusses.
With the new frame design, Kovit looks to have dropped a pound off of the weight. The old Delta 7 Ascend lightweight road bike frame weighed 2.3 lbs, while the new Kovit Ultralight Carbon Fiber IsoTruss Road Frame comes in at only 610 grams or 1.3 lbs.
Because the IsoTruss design uses less carbon fiber than a conventional bike frame, Kovit claims the manufacturing process is a more environmentally-friendly and cost-effective form of frame building. Originally weaving each frame by hand, Kovit has found a way to automate the process, helping to bring the original 5 figure bike price tag down to more affordable levels. Exact pricing details and availability yet to come.