Team Rubicon/Gluekos will race the top of the line Orbea Orca as their team bike for the 2006 US racing season. The Orbea name has been made famous through the sponsorship of the Basque UCI ProTour team of Euskatel Euskadi. This partnership could be no more apt given that Orbea’s home is Northern spain. The Orbea website reads “Underneath the paint is a precise combination of Formula 1 and aerospace grade M30S high-modulus and T700S medium-modulus carbon fibers. T700S makes the frame very durable and M30S fibers allow Orbea to make a bike that is very light and stiff.” The frame being observed in this review, weighed in at approximately 1000grams for the 51cm frame set. Making this a light bike frame.
Initial feelings about the bike after several weeks riding on it are positive. It is extremely agile and stable when rounding corners and the bike loves to descend! The bike frame is not as stiff as other brands of bike frames I have cycled on in the past but it does give a very smooth and gentle ride across all road surface types. Shimano Dura-Ace 10 Speed provide the moving parts on the bik, with one exception. The cranks are provided by Bontrager. The Bontrager Carbon Race x Lite Cranks use the integrated bottom bracket and crank arm system that has become almost standard with regard to this department. The cranks look very “bling bling”, as the chrome finish of the front chain rings stand out when set next to the carbon crank arms.
A Selle San Marco aspide saddle and the Bontrager Select aluminium bar and stem combination provide two out of three contact areas between cyclist and bike. The stem and bars are by no means light but reliability is assured due to the material used in creating these. The third contact point between cyclist and bike are the Keywin pedals. Pedals are a personal choice within the team; so it is not surprising that with a NZL rider aboard this bike that Keywins are the pedal of choice. The other important piece of equipment on the bike is the wheel-set. Bontrager Carbon Race X Lite’s adorn the Orbea frame. These wheels are relatively light for a dish wheel; they are stiff and they are fast. Allowing them to be used on almost all terrain except mountainous races where lightness is the number one factor.
Finishing off the bike is the Polar CS 100 cycle computer with the optional cadence sensor attached. This computer combines both heart rate monitoring, speed and cadence all into one tidy wireless unit.
Thanks to Justin Slarks and Tony Karklins for the frame and forks and as always our team managers Norrene and David.
Frame: Orbea Orca
Wheels; Bontrager carbon race X Lite Aero
Colour: Orbea Orange and Carbon finish
Bar: Bontrager Select aluminium 31.8, 400mm (c2c)
Cranks: Bontrager Carbon Race X Lite
Stem: Bontrager Select aluminium 31.8, 120mm, +/-6 deg
Chain: Dura Ace 10 Speed
Headset: FSA 1 1/8”
Front Derailleur: Dura Ace 10 Speed
Pedals: Keywin Titanium –6mm
Rear Deraileur: Dura Ace 10 Speed
Seat Post: Bontrager Carbon Race X Lite
Brakes; Dura Ace 10 Speed
Saddle: Selle San Marco Aspide
Levers: Dura Ace 10 Speed
Bottle Cages: Trek
Rear Sprokets; Dura Ace 10 Speed, 12-25
Cycle Computer: Polar CS 100 plus cadence sensor