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  1. #1
    mtbr member
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    Castellano Designs.

    A cool looking do it all bike? Waiting for pricing. Looks tempting. http://www.castellanodesigns.com/Zorro.html
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Castellano Designs.-zorro-5x5-ad.jpg  


  2. #2
    Uncle
    Reputation: Entrenador's Avatar
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    John C. is a good guy and brilliant bike mind. He's built a bunch of bikes that I would proudly ride.

  3. #3
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    Interesting pivot placement, definitely no chain growth/tension issues there

    Also looks like a very light design (aside from being a single)

    Good stuff!

  4. #4
    Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
    Reputation: DeeEight's Avatar
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    Unified Triangles had their heyday from about 1994 to 1997. They pedal great seated or standing, but they're barely better than a hardtail when standing (because suddenly most of your weight becomes unsprung mass acting on the swingarm - ie, the shocks do NOT need a lockout, your fat ass does that job just fine if you lift it off the saddle).

    They're good for commuter bikes, singlespeeds, and people who like bikes that behave like hardtails except for the rare moments you're ass is on the saddle when you hit a major bump. Oh and racer-types.

    As to JohnC... that he managed to get the US patent office to grant a patent on a design a century old, simply by creatively describing an imaginary zone in space for the so called "sweet spot" pivot location is proof as to why the USPTO needs a major budget overhaul and some sort of independant peer review of its examiners. The actual sweetspot zone is as I recall this 6" tall by 9" long rectangular box in the middle of the frame. Any URTs with a pivot in that box apparently fall under the patent.

    A few brands licensed the patent (Schwinn, Rocky Mountain, Ibis) to offer their own URT frames, a few simply used a different pivot point (Trek/GaryFisher, Klein) and Catamount avoided being sued simply because as I recall, they developed their bike prior to JohnC "inventing" the URT concept and he didn't want to risk a patent re-exam taking them to court over it. The fact that Roo Trimble and Mike Augsperger (sp?) had marketed a limited run of URTs (the WhizBag bikes as Bicycle Guide called them) starting in 1993 using the composite boom tube front end from brother Brent Trimble's bikes mated to titanium rear ends welded up by Mike (he runs one-off titanium and was a co-founder of Merlin) and are really the modern re-inventors of the concept probably cut down on the number of lawsuits over the pivot point as the Trimble/One-Off bikes had the pivot right in the SS zone also.

  5. #5
    conjoinicorned
    Reputation: ferday's Avatar
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    i rode a john C 'sweet spot' design for a couple years (rocky pipeline). surprisingly plush, but great climber especially when standing....i would dispute that there is no better design in all the world for an FS SS.

    you'll be waiting for pricing for a while, i still haven't got a response from castellano when i emailed a couple years ago. in fairness i sent just one email and didn't try any harder than that.

    if you do find out anything, please post!
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  6. #6
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    Like everything on his site, this is old news. You'll be waiting on pricing for a long time I think. Bigger wheels have put the hurt on his designs.

    Looks mad painful (what's the seat angle w/ sag?)to me, but hey I'm over opinionated.

    -Schmitty-

  7. #7
    Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
    Reputation: DeeEight's Avatar
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    Probably on the order of oh, 65 degrees or less. It doesn't look as severe as a Maverick SL-7 but pretty bad anyway. But you have to draw the actual angle to the BB, not down the seattube to the pivot point.

  8. #8
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    pricing should be in the order of 1300 (that was a quote i got about a year ago)
    Why so much? Lots of true-temper heat-treated tubes there, lots of welding...

    It was designed from the get-go as a 29'er/26'er compatible bike with a different shock location depending on which you ran.
    Remember hearing about room for 26x2.7" tire, so probably space enough for 29x2.4? probably 24x3.0 if that floats your boat!
    Sliders allow for single speed or geared.
    So you could build a half-fat 69er, 6" front and rear squishie singlespeed.

    Yeah versatile, if you like sweet spots....

    DeeEight's being a bit harsh about the design, it didn't ride THAT poorly, but it doesn't compare at all to modern dw/fsr/quad-pivot.
    You are buying old-tech at new prices.

    Sincerely,
    Former Breezer Twister (Caste. licenced sweet spot) rider.
    If steel is real then aluminium is supercallafragiliniun!

  9. #9
    Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
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    I owned a schwinn S.96 and currently have a catamount set up as a singlespeed. I've also ridden the trek Y bikes and the Klein Mantra. Slingshots also technically count as URTs (albeit one with a very high mounted pivot and very minimal wheel travel), as does the new sling-bike design from the slingshot's inventor Mark Groendal (www.erbbike.com).

    When seated, its much like any other suspension bike and if you can remember to stay seated its fine. But if you float over the saddle through rough sections you have to be prepared with less-active rear suspension due to the increased weight that the bump has to act against. Its very much like riding a softtail. If you run the shock soft to respond while standing, it'll be too soft and bottom out when you're seated. It also has all the braking fun of any hardtail (ie prone to wheel chatter) in the rough.

  10. #10
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    That thing is a dud in red paint.

    -Schmitty-

  11. #11
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    there is a reason

    URT designs have gone away...they stink.

  12. #12
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    I don't see any reason to be so harsh/snobbish about it. It's a bit difficult to give your opinion on how a bike rides if you've never even stepped a foot over it no? Sure this design might not be anything new, but some people appreciate the simplicity of a single pivot, and don't really mind the disadvantages too much. Less moving parts, less maintenance, no chain growth/tension issues. Although I'd prefer a DW 650b, I can see the appeal, and wish any new 650b product success.

  13. #13
    conjoinicorned
    Reputation: ferday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reformed roadie
    URT designs have gone away...they stink.
    depends on intended use. for an SS trail bike, there isn't a better design out there. pretty small niche i understand....but this is a custom bike. you'll probably never see one in real life so it doesn't really matter...

    if i had a ton of ca$h burning a hole in my pocket this would be a fun bike. as it is i'm trying to find an old pipeline frame to make SS...
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  14. #14
    T.W.O.
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    Quote Originally Posted by byknuts
    pricing should be in the order of 1300 (that was a quote i got about a year ago)
    Why so much? Lots of true-temper heat-treated tubes there, lots of welding...

    It was designed from the get-go as a 29'er/26'er compatible bike with a different shock location depending on which you ran.
    Remember hearing about room for 26x2.7" tire, so probably space enough for 29x2.4? probably 24x3.0 if that floats your boat!
    Sliders allow for single speed or geared.
    So you could build a half-fat 69er, 6" front and rear squishie singlespeed.

    Yeah versatile, if you like sweet spots....

    DeeEight's being a bit harsh about the design, it didn't ride THAT poorly, but it doesn't compare at all to modern dw/fsr/quad-pivot.
    You are buying old-tech at new prices.

    Sincerely,
    Former Breezer Twister (Caste. licenced sweet spot) rider.

    I thought it's about $2200-2400, not to mention the wait time was a few months out at the time I called. I have the Szabo converted to SS and just love it.

  15. #15
    Dinner for wolves
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    I tell you what, that ad copy is wack as shiz and leftover from the early nineties. Zorro? Turbo-corny. Can't wait to try one, though.
    Responds to gravity

  16. #16
    DOH!
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    Harsh
    what don't kill ya, make ya more strong.

  17. #17
    NedwannaB
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    Harsh?

    Quote Originally Posted by IBBW
    Harsh
    Hardly. Rather plush from what I can remember seeing it and John in action on a ride last year.
    Wait,who did he tell you that?....

  18. #18
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    I've got a few thousand miles on a Schwinn URT. Not a bad bike, and a fresh version of one should be a lot better than the old Schwinn geometry. They climb amazingly well. They are good all around bikes with the right rear shock. I put on a Cane Creek Cloud 9 and completely transformed the way it felt. Amazingly simple and dignified design. But I worry because there is not one single Zorro review out there, so no one knows if it truly rocks or truly sucks.

    I've moved on and the old Schwinn is just a backup machine now. I'm presently riding a Giant and am hoping for a 650b DW as well (in the future).
    I don't know what trail we're on, but at least it's getting dark

  19. #19
    DOH!
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    I was speaking of the comments above, not the Zorros ride. If I could get one I would be riding one now. I owned a ripley for years, best bike I have ever owned, barr none. I sold it only because I bought a size too small, can't blame anyone for that. I can say I don't like the buy it before you try it aspect of his bikes but what are you gonna do?.
    what don't kill ya, make ya more strong.

  20. #20
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    harsh? how about true

    Sorry to those offended, but I am sticking by the comment.
    This may be the only URT design left out there, and that is not by chance.
    How plush is it when you stand up?
    It is from the same gene pool as the beam bike (aka $hit bike)
    The 'suspend the rider' school of thought may work for a hybrid or cruiser, but the reality is that suspension exists to provide traction and control through technical terrain and yes, comfort to the rider. Does someone want to say that they'd prefer this bike over any of the suspension designs out there for riding technical stuff? C'mon...

    RE: the comment on SP (salimoneus) - that's apples and oranges. I have a SC superlight that liked...not as much as the blur XC or blur LT, but it certainly works well, especially now that shock technology (ie platform / lsc) has been dialed. And it is low maintenance.
    But while URT uses only one pivot, it is not the same as single pivot.

    RE: someone mentioning a Ripley, while designed by Castellano, it is not the same design by any stretch. It actually has wheel travel, albeit very little. Softtails have their fans (incl a good friend of mine), but I think you should decide between a hardtail or short travel bike; it is a compromise that the latest XC 4" bikes have all but made moot.

  21. #21
    DOH!
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    Guess I should have made myself more clear. I am exclusively a SS rider, thats why I want to give one of these a shot.

    I rode and raced a Ripley for 4 years, I know how it worked, thanks.
    what don't kill ya, make ya more strong.

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