NINER CARBON: ABOVE AND BEYOND
The use of Carbon in bicycle frames and components has reached critical mass, but in the scurry to meet demand, much has been lost in the translation. Niner’s path to this element comes from a different direction. Rather than just offering carbon products, we make sure we are maximizing the benefits of the material and that our carbon products are purpose-built from the ground up.
We start with computer-based shaping. Drawing from FEA studies that we conduct on our current products and by buying and testing other offerings, we establish a solid framework of stiffness and strength numbers within which to work. Studying energy flow from trail input and chain torque, we then refine a fluid shape that disperses this energy throughout the structure and eliminates stress risers and hot spots. Our objective is to use the natural damping of carbon to increase the fatigue life of the structure and decrease the vibrations translated to the rider.
The visible shape of our products directly correlates to the stiffness and strength numbers we want to achieve. With carbon, it’s very easy to get stuck in a game of just ‘layer it up’. The easiest path is to create a shape and then add carbon layers in any critical area until the structure is strong enough to pass testing. This approach is not good enough for Niner Bikes. Structural form and shaping are the key contributors establishing stiffness and strength in all critical areas. The final shape of our frames and forks reflect the intent to achieve optimal function without falling into the ‘layer it up’ quicksand.
Once shapes are finalized in the computer, we utilize rapid prototyping to build full-scale SLA models to ensure fit with other components and to confirm tolerances. Next, we open a mold and build physical samples for testing. All of our carbon products undergo exhaustive physical destructive and strength evaluation before we release them for ride testing. Any revision during this process requires a new round of destructive stress testing to guarantee that refinements do not have a negative impact on overall strength and only serve to increase ride quality or decrease weight – a routine we are committed to in every new product design process.
The path to a final product is long and winding, but every step is critical when creating a Niner product. Carbon is an amazing material with a world of possibilities and our dedication to finding the best options for every frame and component is key to the Niner design process.
Niner RDO level products take our commitment to quality one step further via Niner’s RDO Carbon Compaction System. Now used throughout the Niner RDO lineup, this CCS utilizes rigid internal molds and results in tighter, more consistent compaction of the carbon layers, yielding increased precision in wall thickness and significantly reduced resin pooling in the final product, allowing us to aim for better ride tuning, increased strength and durability along with the weight reduction that results from a more efficient process.
Our robust R&D program - computer modeling, physical prototype testing (both in-house and at independent testing facilities), and hours of riding by skilled and abusive individuals make us confident that our products will exceed your expectations. We maintain that our RDO Carbon Compaction System rivals the best in the bike industry and to back it and our standard carbon products up with the C5 warranty (five year) and a standard-setting commitment to customer service.
Warranty is only available for original product owners with proof of purchase from an authorized Niner dealer, no online auction purchases will be honored. For all new purchases, online registration is required for warranty service.