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The frame of its MTB is milled from a single aluminum block



With their big ugly welds, aluminum frame MTB generally isn’t quite as pretty as their carbon fiber or titanium counterparts. That said, the German-made Frace F160 weighing 16,3 kg is an exception, as its frame is milled from a solid block of aluminum.

Its MTB frame starts life as a 70kg slab of 7075 aluminum that quickly gets turned into the mainframe. It may sound like this leaves a lot of waste but the off-cut material then gets used for other parts. In total, 8 individual segments are machined and then connected using titanium screws to form the final bike. 7075 aluminum is not weldable, but it is incredibly stiff.

The F160 was initially created by Bernd Iwanow, who previously worked as a CNC machine operator and production manager. He proceeded to have two pro riders try out his prototypes. Their feedback was quite positive, leading to the current fifth-generation version of the F160 that is now slated to enter limited production. This MTB frame has passed strength and fatigue tests conducted by Germany’s EFBE bicycle-assessment group, and it certainly is pleasing to the eye.

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