Présentation des Kabra F-24
Presentación Kabra F-24

Introducing the Kabra F-24

Wednesday 17 March 2010
by Ben Swales
popularity : 9%

PNG - 42.5 kb We told you in mid-November that the Elite rider Juanda de la Peña, who has been in the top ten UCI for many years (he finished third in the UCI World Championship 2005) and has participated in competitions this year ( 17ht place in the world cup in Ripol), was working in an interesting project: a 24” bike meant for natural (not for street), with a geometry designed for this purpose, and based on best bike for 20" and 26" of the world; high bottom bracket, long and a reduced weight.

At the end of November we show you some photographs of the new bike with Juanda in action, with the prototype on some indoor areas (a 24” designed for natural!). Some days later, Juanda told us some more about the prototype built in Spain (The Juandas Kabra F-24). The project gained interest quickly by trial forums and as a coincidence there were more news for 24 " in sections! People say that when the big brands heard the started or are now starting to work on similar projects. The final prototype, which is named “F-24”, arrived from China in December and quickly it the final prototype F-24 was tested on rocks. (The final prototype of Kabra F-24).

PNG - 284.5 kb The Kabra, which name comes from the animal, has been available for several days in Spain… The first units arrived during the first days of this month, but they sold out quickly, so a new order will arrive and you can buy it in Juanda’s new shop www.tobuytrial.com, and Juanda is also an Atomz distributor for Spain. Juanda sent us pictures from his bike, which is available in two colors, silver and black. The bike comes with a spectacular graphic aesthetic and reinforcements in strategic areas. The bike comes standard on a weight of 8.8, but a model mounted by Juanda is in 8.3, so it’s a more than good weight. We took the chance to ask him questions about his new and exciting bike!

Interview:

Here the interview that was made by Alvaro, administrator of spanish setion...

JPEG - 197.3 kb Alvaro: Why did you decide to leave top-level competition behind you and focus on sales and manufacturing?

Juanda: Because for a long time I’d been splitting my time between the international circuit and my university education. When I finished my studies I decided that the time had come to leave competitions behind me and start working. I decided to work on what I liked best: developing bikes, organising events and running the shop…

Alvaro: When and why did you make the decision to create your own 24”?

Juanda: I’d always competed on 20” bikes, that’s all there was when I started. Then 26” bikes appeared and have were developed over the years. I realised that you could get more out of these bigger bikes with the level that I had at the time; I tried one and yes, they were better for a lot of things, but you lose a bit of agility and it felt a bit out of proportion to me after so long on a 20”.

That was when I had the idea of a middle ground, an intermediary size that would have the advantages of both categories. I took a Kamel 231 and converted it to a 24”. It felt great, but the geometry wasn’t quite right. Since no one seemed willing to take the first step, I though “it’s up to me”, and there you have it.

Alvaro: What did you base the bike on?

Juanda: I looked at the geometries that I liked best in the 20” and 26” categories and adapted them to a 24”. I then made some small adjustments according to my own criteria.

PNG - 40.5 kb Alvaro: How did you choose the name “Kabra”?

Juanda: I considered a few other names, but none of them really grabbed me. Then I was sitting with Lina one day and she was telling me a story about a colleague of hers and a goat (cabra in Spanish) and it clicked, I would call the bike the “Kabra”. I imagined a goat leaping from rock to rock, and that was the image I wanted for the bike.

Alvaro: What did you want from the bike?

Juanda: Above all, I wanted to introduce a new concept into the world of trials, a ‘trials’ 24”. I kept the design simple and attractive. I’ve got a few more innovative ideas up my sleeve, but they’ll have to wait until the next model.

Alvaro: Can you tell us about any of them?

Juanda: A radical change in the material used for the frame, in the geometries and the design and some alternatives to the accessories that we have always used… TOP SECRET!

Alvaro: Why is there not a disc option?

Juanda: Developing and marketing a bike from the ground up is very risky, I wanted to be sure that at the very least the braking was good.

Alvaro: How many prototypes did you go through and what changed with each one?

Juanda: While I was making contact with the manufacturers in China, I took the first step here in Spain. I found a local frame builder who hand made me the first prototype. It was a bit bodged together but it had the geo that I wanted. I tested it myself and it seemed great!

Then I sent the designs to China and received a second prototype not long after. It was finished a lot better but there were still a few niggles. Once these were corrected, production began.

Alvaro: and for the frames graphics?

Juanda: I asked a colleague to help me with the logo and with the frame graphics. All I did was choose the colours: anodised grey and black.

As for the shape of the frame, I designed the geometry first, with straight tubes. Then I tried a monocoque design. Then I decided to curve the downtube a bit to add a bit of flexibility and to improve the look of the frame. The yokes are machined from a single piece of aluminium, for stiffness.

Alvaro: Are you thinking of making a 20” or a 26”?

Juanda: There’s already a lot of choice for 20s and 26s. My aim is to break into the 24” market. But then, if everything goes well, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t give it a go!

Alvaro: Thanks for your time and good luck with the project!

Juanda: Thank you!

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The Kabra F-24:

A couple of photos of the Kabra F-24... Pretty good looking, for a pair of goats! Click to zoom.

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A closer look at the grey version…

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This light build tips the scales at...

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Juanda in action:

A couple of action photos by Catalan photographer Enric Moran...

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