If you want a full description of the superlight fully sprung beast from Cannondale check out Matt Philip’s ‘Gear Queer’ column on Mountainbike.com but here’s the details we’ve gleaned from there and elsewhere.
The Scalpel uses ‘twisted’ carbon fibre chainstays plugged into magnesium bottom bracket collars and dropouts. The stays are designed so that they flex vertically at a given central point to allow 2.5″ of travel, without introducing any lateral flexibilty. These stays are linked to a vertical mounted Fox shock behind the seat tube via typically tiny ‘Dale seatstays and a small, horizontal linkage plate (like the original Specialized FSR).
The stay’s flexure path is designed to slightly elongate the chain (move the hub away from the bottom bracket) in the early stages of travel (which will help the suspension dig in and stiffen under power for fast acceleration), then curve upwards mid stroke for active compliance before curving back in towards the frame, (which should balance the progressive action of the air shock).
Obviously we haven’t ridden it yet, but the whole thing (complete with Ti / carbon Lefty, discs, new Hollowgram double chainset (based on their road bike set ups) remote front and rear shock lockout and Hutchinson tubeless tyres) weighs in around 22lb and Mr Philips seems very impressed.
Soon as we get hold of any spy shots we’ll get them up here, but like we say if you want any more data go read the original.