British summer has finally arrived! All across the UK’s roads and bridleways, a fair weather creature known as the Mamil can be seen in abundance. Often travelling in packs, and frequently to be found outside watering holes serving alcoholic beverages, the Mamil, or ‘Middle Aged Man in Lycra’, can be found with his push bike making the most of the Great British countryside and the sunshine.
Bicycle technology has developed constantly, from early innovations such as rubber tyres and sprung saddles to modern suspension systems and electric drive systems, the technology involved in the bicycle has evolved almost beyond recognition. Carbon fibre, aircraft grade Aluminium and other materials have brought down weight and
increased frame strength, multi compound tyres have helped increased speed, grip and durability on and off the roads.
Two of the biggest names in Mountain Biking have turned to PTC’s Creo software to help them bring the latest technologies into their bicycle designs.
Specialized brought the first mass market mountain bike to the market in the early 1980’s and were one of the first companies to develop a line of mountain bikes designed specifically for women. The women’s bikes feature smaller diameter tubing, a lighter (but not weaker) overall weight, and tuned suspension.
“Our products are 100% inspired and built for the women we are and the women we meet every day,” says the company web site. This year Specialized’s women’s line is 10 years old.
“Many of the ideas and themes you find on our high-end bikes originated in the women’s line,” says creative director Robert Egger.
“That’s because they tend to be more open minded about trying new ideas.”
Robb Jankura, mountain bike engineering manager and power PTC Creo user, credits the design software for helping Specialized bring the best ideas to market.
“With PTC Creo, we can explore more concepts than ever before, and pick those that will have the most impact on performance or
comfort. We fully built, tested, and optimized these new components within PTC Creo, saving us weeks and months compared to traditional physical prototyping techniques.”
Santa Cruz Bicycles was founded in 1993 in Santa Cruz, California. Today they manufacture 19 different models of high performance mountain bikes and are in the process of moving into larger premise to allow them to grow further, having doubled their turnover since 2007. Joe Graney, Santa Cruz Bicycles Director of Engineering says that PTC Creo has a lot to do with that growth.
“Over the past year, we created six brand new models, plus upgraded several more. Before we used PTC’s design tools, we were only producing one or two new models per year,” states Graney. “Our customers want the latest technology, and being able to bring new bikes to market quickly satisfies that desire and drives sales. People want to buy the latest and greatest. With PTC Creo, we can create many design iterations before prototyping. This means we are able to decrease our time-to-market, while we design exciting new bikes. We’ve actually cut the time it takes to bring a new mountain bike model to market by about two-thirds.”
While the bicycle industry may not be everyones industry, the same challenges apply. Decreasing time to market, lowering costs, better material usage are benefits that all design and manufacturing settings can benefit from. For more information on PTC Creo products and to see which of the tools could help optimise your design requirements, contact email@example.com or give us a call on 0845 453 4101
*PS, 3 members of the team at High Peak Systems fall under the category of Mamil, or at least young Mamil