Developing the Eastway range
For 2016, the Eastway Emitter R1 sits as the figure-head of our in-house Eastway bikes range. Complete with its Shimano Ultegra Di2 transmission, and its top-level finishing kit; it is a superb ride. We could have pushed the specification of the R1 build further, and the frame easily warrants a top-end group-set. However, we decided that we should initially aim for stunning value. So, aimed at the everyday rider, the R1 provides incredible performance for your pound - We're not a World Tour brand, and we know our place… for now!
While for the moment, we didn't want to commit time and effort (not to mention money and stock), on a stratospheric specification bike; we did want to be able to test our frame platform for future development of the range. Here at Wiggle we have a team of 'Test Riders' – Team Wiggle. The team race road races, crit's, sportives and endurance events, as well as the odd Triathlon. This year, the squad will be riding Eastway bikes for the first time. Whilst the Emitter R1, R2 and R3 would have covered most of the needs of the team, we decided to invest some time into future developments...
So what have we done to push boundaries for future development?
Light Speed! - Firstly, we all like a light bike! The current Emitter range all shares the same frame platform; a 1 kilo frameset, which is light enough to compete in every sense of the word. However, we reckoned we could go lighter… what’s more, we could go lighter and maintain the stiffness and the ride quality. Enter the Emitter R0!
The Emitter R0 uses a new carbon lay-up, which reduces weight, whilst keeping performance. It maintains the trademark bottom bracket stiffness, and the direct drive of the rear triangle set-up. What it adds (or rather takes away!) is that it is 200 grams lighter – weighing in at 800 grams! The carbon experts in the factory went through a number of iterations for us to test, and they all sailed through with shining colours. We have created a lighter, stiffer, faster bike! That's progress…
The next step was to tune-up the design. The main range benefits from a subtle paint job, delivering a touch of panache without being too showy; based around a black core, with colours flashing across the frame and forks. For the R0, we swapped the black for a dark navy blue, with a touch of sparkle! The colour splash remains, but this time it brings a touch of Wiggle orange into the equation.
So, that's the frame done...
The next question to turn to, was how we should spec out the Team Wiggle bikes. The simple answer to this, would be to throw money at the groupset and load up Shimano Dura Ace Di2; then put on a range of carbon finishing kit, and some superlight wheels; it would create a sub 6.7 kilo bike! But, that would really miss the point of investing in a top-level frameset, to test future potential.
So we didn't do that...
What we did, was give the frame to the riders and ask them to push their own boundaries. We asked them to test some new kit; try some new things out; experiment! With all the different riders and their different season targets, we have some interesting builds, and some great platforms for testing new equipment from some of the cycling world’s top brands.
Bike Profiles coming soon
Over the coming months we’ll be doing 'Bike Profiles' for all of the Team Wiggle Eastway Emitter R0 builds. Everyone is different, every bike has personalisation, and every build has modifications. These will be exciting posts, keep a look out!