FORGE+BOND has entered the cycling scene this season with an innovative new concept: recyclable bicycle wheels and components.
The company has announced two new thermoplastic carbon fiber wheelsets: the F+B 30 EM 29”, an enduro MTB wheel ($2,599 MSRP), and the F+B 25 GR 700c gravel wheel ($2,599 MSRP). You can find the items on their website and in select retailers this spring.
“At FORGE+BOND, we’re not just creating the best-performing wheels on the planet, we’re also reimagining the way the world rides,” said Joe Wheadon, FORGE+BOND VP of Sales and Marketing. “From automated cutting and layup processes to delivering finished wheels, the production process is designed to save energy and eliminate waste at every step.”
In the outdoor gear world, innovation and sustainability are driving forces. FORGE+BOND leverages an advanced thermoplastic composite material called FUSIONFIBER, a proprietary material made with long-chain polymers. FORGE+BOND’s nylon-based thermoplastic material means the material can literally be made and remade forever, and the net goal is to waste nothing.
FORGE+Bond is aiming to transform the cycling space through its responsibility-first approach. “Our ultimate goal is to inspire others to join us in creating a world where nothing is wasted–not only in materials but also in resources and time,” said Wheadon. Everything from raw materials to final products is built in the USA, ensuring performance, durability, reliability, and sustainability. Even the production process is designed to eliminate waste.
Since FORGE+BOND doesn’t use any epoxies or resins (which need to be burned off before recycling and are typical of other carbon fiber bicycle component manufacturers), FORGE+BOND avoids an otherwise energy-intensive and toxic process that other companies must endure. Additionally, unlike epoxy-based thermoset carbon fiber typically used by other cycling companies, FUSIONFIBER® waste from FORGE+BOND bike rims and other finished products is 100% recyclable. Excess materials can be chopped, trimmed, and compressed into new high-quality, high value and high-performance products, like tire levers. Little, if anything, is wasted.
Additionally, FORGE+BOND’s unique material and manufacturing process keeps the rider’s experience at the forefront. Rims made with FUSIONFIBER offer a smoother, faster, confidence-inspiring ride, and much higher impact resistance without additional weight. The long-chain nylon polymers used in the FUSIONFIBER material, makes it possible to absorb impacts through microscopic flexing in the fibers that radially dissipate shock throughout the rim. FORGE+BOND rims have been tested to withstand a minimum of 275 percent of the UCI standard for impact resistance.
The microscopic flexing allowed by the nylon material in FUSIONFIBER also provides a 50 percent or greater increase in damping while maintaining lateral stability.
“With FUSIONFIBER, we don’t have to sacrifice stiffness to improve ride quality,” said Global Marketing Director Travis Tomczak. “We target the stiffness we want for maximum control and performance and the thermoplastic matrix acts as a damper to the entire system. By constantly iterating and gathering feedback from our testing team and athletes, we’ve created a wheel that gives riders the ability to charge through any terrain with confidence and control.”
Here are the specs:
- Rim weight: 380g
- Wheel set weight (I9 Torch): 1510g
- ERD: 592
- Outer Rim Width: 31.4mm
- Inner Rim Width: 25mm
- Bead Wall Thickness: 3.2mm
- Rim Depth: 25mm
- Spoke Count: 24h
- Spoke: Sapim CX Ray
- Rim Type: Hookless / Tubeless
- Hub Spec: Industry Nine Torch
- Tire Size Range: 32c-48c
- Rim weight: 530g
- 28h wheelset weight (I9 Hydra): 1884g
- 32h wheelset weight (I9 Hydra): 1982g
- ERD: 594
- Outer Rim Width: 38mm
- Inner Rim Width: 30mm
- Bead Wall Thickness: 4mm
- Rim Depth: 22mm
- Spoke Count: 28h or 32h
- Spoke: Sapim D-Lite
- Rim Type: Hookless / Tubeless
- Hub Spec: Industry Nine Hydra
- Tire Size Range: 2.3”-2.6”
–Author Aaron H. Bible is an award-winning writer and multimedia producer with three decades of experience working as a content specialist, creative director, and journalist. Aaron is a contributing writer, editor and photographer to publications including SKI, Freeskier, Men’s Health, Popular Mechanics, Sunset, Gear Junkie, 5280, Elevation Outdoors, Vanish, and more. He holds an MFA in photography from the Savannah College of Art & Design, and has worked as a photographer, gallery director, and educator. A ski bum at heart, Aaron lives with his family in the high-country of Colorado where he and his wife are raising two girls to love thin air, fresh pow, and the flow state. Follow him @DefinitelyWild.