Saturday, May 20, 2017

Java Freccia Carbon Mini Velo: Part 2 - Weight of Frameset Components

After taking a close look at the Java Freccia carbon mini velo frame and fork in the previous post, let us now see exactly how lightweight this frameset is.

By building the bike up from a bare frame, it makes it easy to measure all the weights exactly. The main objective of this project is to build a mini velo that is as lightweight as possible.

From some research, I have the weight comparison of some popular and more well known mini velo framesets.

Wheelsport Fantasy (aluminium frame, carbon fork): About 2.3kg
Tyrell FX (aluminum frame, carbon fork, folding): About 3.1kg
Tyrell CSI (aluminium/carbon frame, carbon fork): About 2.15kg
Tyrell PK1 (titanium frame, carbon fork): About 2.45kg

As you can see, the lightest frameset, which is the Tyrell CSI, still weighs about 2.15 kg as it is mostly aluminium with a carbon rear triangle and fork.

The Java Freccia frameset will beat all these frameset weights by a large margin, if the claimed weight on the website is to be believed.

Java Freccia claimed frameset weight: 850 grams for frame, 360 grams for fork, giving a frameset weight of only 1210 grams (1.21 kg)!

I know that these claimed weights are often overly optimistic, and are usually too good to be true. Even then, the difference with the other frame weights are so big that there will definitely be weight savings even if the actual weight is not as light as claimed.

Frame: Claimed weight is 850 grams, actual weight is 1060 grams. Quite far off, but still lightweight.

Fork: Claimed weight is 360 grams, actual weight is 412 grams. Smaller difference than the frame.

Claimed frameset weight: 1210 grams
Actual frameset weight: 1472 grams

Although the actual weight is higher, just as I expected, it is still considered a very lightweight frameset, as it is more than 800 grams lighter than the Wheelsport Fantasy mini velo frameset!

This is a significant weight saving as the frameset weight has been reduced by more than one third.

How about the weight of the other frame components, such as the headset, carbon spacer, carbon seatpost and etc?

Headset bearings, compression ring and cover. 58 grams. No headset cups required as it is integrated into the frame for weight savings.

Specifications of the headset bearings, in case anyone is interested to know.

More carbon goodies. Carbon top cap by Controltech, 27 grams.

Carbon spacer weight, 63 grams before cutting. 120mm long.

As this frame uses an aero shaped seatpost, the aero seatpost is also included. This also means that I cannot use the modified FSA SL-K seatpost which only weighs 206 grams.

Aero carbon seatpost that comes with the Java Freccia frameset

Aluminium plate that clamps the saddle rails onto the carbon seatpost. Quite a common design nowadays.

It even has a special rough coating on the seatpost to prevent seatpost slippage. Similar to that found on the clamping areas of carbon handlebars.

There is an aluminium insert that extends about 10cm upwards from the base of the seatpost, presumably to strengthen the seatpost without adding too much weight.

This seatpost is also quite lightweight! Only 213 grams, only slightly heavier than the modified FSA SL-K seatpost which weighs 206 grams.

Seatpost clamp design, which has two wedges at the side that pushes a third wedge against the seatpost to clamp it in place.

Seatpost clamp mechanism weighs 27 grams

It also comes with a rubber cover to prevent water entering the frame through the seatpost area

Complete assembly of the seatpost, seatpost clamp and rubber cover onto the frame. This seatpost clamp design gives a very clean look to the frame, with nothing sticking out.

As described in the previous post, the frame and fork has special mountings to accept aero type V brakes. However, since I am using standard road caliper brakes, these mountings are not required. As such, it is a good idea to block off these holes by inserting a bolt.

Aero type V brakes seen mounted at the rear of the front fork

To save a tiny little bit of weight, I decided to use nylon bolts instead of steel bolts to seal off these holes.

Nylon bolts, not for any load bearing usage. Perhaps only suitable for decorative purposes.

4 M6 mylon bolts only weigh 2 grams

Nylon bolt sealing off the holes on the fork

Same for the holes on the rear triangle of the frame

In summary, this carbon frameset saves over 800 grams over the Wheelsport mini velo frameset, which will result in a super lightweight mini velo.

The next post will show the frame geometry comparison between this new Java frame, the Wheelsport frame and also the Merida Scultura frame.


  1. any issues with rear dropout alignment ?