Remember DEAN? The company produced a nice line in titanium frames during the 90s and while it could be easy to think they were no longer around, they are very much alive and kicking. In fact they were showing a healthy new range of models at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show recently.
Currently in development is the Duke 29er. It’s a pivotless full-susser Rohloff belt-drive frame which is based on the existing Duke full-susser but tweaked and modified to work around the larger wheels.
Belt-drive frames were a popular attraction at the show and there were many approaches to the issue of splitting the driveside seat stay to allow for the belt to be passed through – the DEAN solution is one of the most elegant on show we reckon.
Other features include a 44mm headtube allowing for a choice of forks from standard 11/8in to tapered steerer tube forks. The rear shock is controlled via two short slim aluminium links to allow the designers to tune shock path, and instead of a main pivot there is flex built into the skinny chainstays, reducing the weight.