Giorgio – Frame Building Course Q & A12. December 2023
Dirk – Riding Passes in the Alps (2504m)12. December 2023
We are happy to introduce the prototype for what will become the new Pathfinder model for 2021 and beyond! The Pathfinder has a few new features that we are pretty excited about, and when we get excited about something, we think you will, too. The Pathfinder is based around the Columbus Futura Gravel fork, and has clearance for tires up to around 40mm. Like our most popular model, the Backwoods, the frame is dedicated to a 1X drivetrain. Also like the Backwoods, the cable routing is completely internal.
Unlike the Backwoods, this frame has a T47 bottom bracket shell, which due to it’s larger diameter, allows the cables to stay inside the bottom bracket shell, instead of exiting on the down tube and re-entering on the chain stays. This keeps the bike looking even cleaner than before. The cable routing of the Pathfinder is also lighter than that of the Backwoods by around 150g. Sure that’s not much on paper, but if you’re the type that counts his grams, it’s actually quite a bit. The T47 Bottom bracket also offers increased frame stiffness over the usual BSA bottom bracket, and although we are not believers of the ‘stiffer is better’ mentality that plays over and over again in the bike industry, certainly increased stiffness in this area of the frame, as power input from your legs more directly translates into forward motion, is a good thing. If you aren’t familiar with the T47 standard, it is a larger diameter threaded shell, which avoids the creaking press fit bearings, and allows easy removal with a simple wrench. The bearings are also larger which translates to longer bearing lifetime.
The other cool thing about the Pathfinder is that we are so happy with how it turned out, we are actually planning to stock this frame in an least 3 standard sizes, because we know that most people don’t really want to wait the 10-12 Months for a custom frame which is the typical wait time at Big Forest Frameworks. And if you can’t wait for production to get rolling here, this prototype is up for grabs. You can see and test ride it at Fahrradstation Potsdam in Babelsberg. It’s has a 54cm seat tube, 56cm top tube, and a reach and stack of 395mm and 557mm. With pretty much everything in the realm of gravel bikes currently sold out, don’t wait long or it will be gone!!!