If you could only have one bike to ride for the next 5 years what would that bike look like?
For me it would have to be something versatile and adaptable, fun to ride anywhere, easy to maintain and it would have to be designed so that it wasn't going to look super outdated in a couple years time.
This was the train of thought that led me to found Morph Cycles.
I ended up designing this low-standover single-pivot 29er that had a party trick. You could run it with a 140 fork for trail bike type characteristics, or you could switch to a 160 fork and flip the flipchip and have more aggressive geometry. It's almost like having 2 bikes.
In both configurations you get 142mm of linear rear suspension - linear means it's a blank canvas to do what you want with - you can tune it to ride how you want it to because there's no progression or regression engineered into the leverage curve. You can decide yourself whether you want to set it up to be progressive, using tokens or a progressive spring, or whether you embrace the linear curve - it's up to you!
You can change the fork travel as often or as little as you want, you could buy the frame and run it with a 160 fork the entire time you own it - but the option to set it up as more of a trail bike is always there.
Why Single Pivot?
Single pivot designs have always had great advantages. The platform is very predictable, can be tuned to give a wide variety of characteristics and is extremely simple to maintain.
Historically, single pivot designs have had a reputation for bobbing under pedalling and their flat leverage curves didn't work well with coil shocks. However, the advent of 1x drivetrains has changed the game for single pivot. A single front chainring paired with careful pivot placement means the anti-squat is over 100% in all of the climbing gears, irradiating the pedal bob problem of old. Almost all modern shocks now feature ramp control (normally via volume spacers) and many modern coil shocks have hydraulic bumper stops and the option to run progressive springs. This means you have way more control of your suspension setup than ever before - and the neutral platform provided by a single pivot gives you a great base from which to find your perfect setup.
Steel bikes have a timelessness not seen in other frame materials. They don't look like last year's model after only 1-2 seasons. Steel also gives beautiful clean lines, excellent fatigue resistance and desirable flex characteristics.
This is also no ordinary straight-gauge steel tubing; the UK is home to Reynolds, makers of some of the finest bicycle tubing available anywhere. The Reynolds 853 DZB tube set used is triple butted, heat treated and air hardened. This means these tubes have great mechanical properties and there's more material where the stresses are higher and less material where it's not needed to save weight.
Materials and Components
The tubeset and components used on Morph frames are second to none - up there with the best available anywhere.
The toptube, downtube, seattube, BB and chainstays are Reynolds 853 and the seatstays are Reynolds 725. This isn't a frame that uses a couple of Reynolds tubes and cheap steel elsewhere, every tube used on these frames is quality.
The dropouts are manufactured in the UK by Bear Frame Supplies and feature both a replaceable hanger and replaceable threads. The dropouts are beautiful to look at and ensure longevity and serviceability.
Quality and Workmanship
All the major frame components are produced in the UK or France - either by Reynolds, myself, Gael from Baudou Bikes or Aaron from Bear Frame Supplies. The only parts made outside of this corner of Europe are the bearings and bolts.
The tubes are cut and mitred and the frame is brazed in Toulouse, France. The paint is also applied in Toulouse, before the frame returns to the UK for finishing touches.
These frames are made by only a handful of people, each an expert in what they do.
I believe strongly in trying to minimise the environmental impact of this business. I believe the best thing we can do the for the environment as mountain bikers is to use our bikes for longer before replacing them. For that reason I don't believe in introducing a new model every year, quickly making the previous frames "old news". I have designed my frames to be easily fixed and serviced and I will always do my best to make available spare parts to keep my frames in use.
Some packaging is required to ensure safe transportation, but I will always do my best to minimise any use of non-recyclable packaging when sending out frames and t-shirts.
April 2020 there will be a drop of 5 frames.
Each frame is going to be made to order and there will be a degree of customisation available. This means that the frame geometry will be altered to suit you and your requirements. We'll talk about your height and proportionality, where you ride and your preferences to make sure we get sizing and geometry that suits you.
The frame will be hand built in France by my business partner Gael Baudou. The frames will be painted in Morph Cycles black.
Because of the made-to-order business model there will be a lead time associated with each frame, likely 6-10 weeks. I will always keep customers updated with their order progress.
As part of the service I'm happy to discuss build options with you and help you to pick out spec that's going to build you a really killer bike.
The base price for a frame is £2400 - that price includes a DVO Topaz T3 shock and a Hope seat clamp.
Forks, droppers, headsets, cranks and other components can be added to the order at additional cost.
If you are interested in one of my frames please register your interest below and feel free to get in touch with any questions (see contact section for details).
Morph Cycles is a start-up MTB company I founded whilst at university. At least 1000 hours of research and development went into this frame over about 2 years. I designed the frame from the ground up using Linkage X3, Siemens NX and a lot of creative juices.
I'm planning to start taking orders for frames in early 2020. If you would like a to be one of the first people to get a Morph Cycles frame please get in touch!
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Want one of these fresh tees?
180gsm quality cotton construction. Custom labels. Sizes S-XXL.
Just send me an email and I'll post you one out!
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£15 posted to mainland UK
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