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War of the road bikes
January 5, 2012 7:49 AM   Subscribe

Bicycle Goliath Specialized is suing their former employe's start up company Volagi over their innovative road bike design that includes disc brakes and a very interesting seat stay arrangement. Volagi's Facebook explanation. TV news report.

Beyond the bikes very interesting seat stays, there are two larger questions. 1: Does a company you work for own every thought you have while you work for them, even if not directly related to your job? 2: Disc brakes on a road bike?
posted by cccorlew (58 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Does a company you work for own every thought you have while you work for them, even if not directly related to your job?

I recently saw an actual Agreement From On High that said explicitly this and more (like that all thoughts you'd had prior to working for them were also theirs).
posted by DU at 7:53 AM on January 5, 2012


Here's bikesnob's take on the lawsuit.

2: Disc brakes on a road bike?

Maybe.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:56 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


damn, that Volagi is hideous.
posted by entropone at 8:05 AM on January 5, 2012


Kind of like the Bratz doll guy being sued by Mattel, because he had the idea while working for them.
posted by Think_Long at 8:06 AM on January 5, 2012


Oh my god why is he talking about this on the internet what the fuck are his lawyers doing SHUT UP SHUT UP YOU ASSHOLE EVERYTHING YOU SAY IS GOING TO BE USED AGAINST YOU

Anyway, pretty bike. Maybe not for the "steel is real" crowd, but those guys are still waiting for the Vanilla they ordered three years ago.
posted by pts at 8:09 AM on January 5, 2012 [9 favorites]


From the bikesnob link:

Employing pointlessly swoopy crabon tubes and ascribing mystical ride qualities to them;

This is pretty much all high-price-point bikes. substitue "steel" for lower-price-point bikes and you get basically the same thing. "Vertically compliant, but torsionally stiff!" Never once have I seen someone actually try and measure how much their frame flexes in either direction, let alone compare that to a more "standard" frame design than the one they're trying to impress you with.
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 8:12 AM on January 5, 2012


1: Does a company you work for own every thought you have while you work for them, even if not directly related to your job?

I freelance and I've also had a company hand me a contract to sign that said exactly and explicitly that: they owned the rights to any idea I had at any time during my period of working for them, even though they knew I work for several companies at a time.

I just pushed it back across the table and refused to sign. It just does my head in that lawyers, being paid a whole lot more than I get, can draft such fucking nonsense and not for a moment realise what idiocy they're creating and foisting on the rest of us.
posted by dowcrag at 8:15 AM on January 5, 2012 [6 favorites]


I suspect that this kind of shit is the single greatest inhibitor of innovation in the developed world.
posted by 0xdeadc0de at 8:17 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oxdeadc0de: Television.
posted by RolandOfEld at 8:19 AM on January 5, 2012 [2 favorites]


I suspect that this kind of shit is the single greatest inhibitor of innovation in the developed world.

On the other hand, I've seen small to medium businesses gutted by employees who brazenly walked out the door with products (and customers) that the company spent years on developing. The startup's strategies range from "it would be too expensive to sue us" to "there will be nobody who can sue: the old company will fold without us".
posted by bonehead at 8:26 AM on January 5, 2012 [2 favorites]


I recently saw an actual Agreement From On High that said explicitly this and more (like that all thoughts you'd had prior to working for them were also theirs).
posted by DU at 10:53 AM on January 5 [+] [!]


I've seen one that said that anything you think of while you work for them, or anything you do even on personal time, not only while you worked there but also for a full year afterwards, belonged to the company.

My friend (who was the original recipient of the agreement) had the good sense to tell their HR person what they could do with their agreement and job offer.
posted by deadmessenger at 8:27 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'd love to give this bike a try. I currently ride a Roubaix and do centuries and double centuries. I don't race; I go long. It seems like most quality bikes are modeled after racing bikes ridden by young cycling gods. I'm not either of those. I love the idea of a lightweight bike with discs and a smooth ride. This bike would be right up my alley.

Unlike entrophone above, I like the look of this bike. To me, the disc brakes look space age high tech way cool. Having come down some very steep technical hills when I'm exhausted makes those disc brakes look mighty attractive.
posted by cccorlew at 8:28 AM on January 5, 2012


The one I saw wasn't presented before hiring. It was sent out to *existing employees*. Who naturally were not being offered much higher pay/benefits for these new rights the company demanded. They were being allowed to keep their jobs. For now.
posted by DU at 8:29 AM on January 5, 2012


cccorlew: I want disc brakes on my commuter in the worst way, for all those reasons. They work better and they look great.

Sadly, I'd have to buy a whole new bike to get them.
posted by pts at 8:37 AM on January 5, 2012


I recently saw an actual Agreement From On High that said explicitly this and more (like that all thoughts you'd had prior to working for them were also theirs).

What. This is insane. The caselaw doesn't say this is enforceable, right?
posted by jaduncan at 8:40 AM on January 5, 2012


If my employer said they had the right to all my ideas I would start emailing them to everyone in the company. All of them. All the time. As I have them. As I refine them. As I remember them again. As I dream them.

I wouldn't want to deprive them of their rights....
posted by srboisvert at 8:42 AM on January 5, 2012 [4 favorites]


or when I am in the wrong tab! Dammit!
posted by srboisvert at 8:43 AM on January 5, 2012


I've seen one that said that anything you think of while you work for them, or anything you do even on personal time, not only while you worked there but also for a full year afterwards, belonged to the company.

Interesting question: does this mean that they would own copyright on a blog post that you wrote criticising the company? I'm just wondering if that would render DMCA takedowns of employee criticism possible.
posted by jaduncan at 8:43 AM on January 5, 2012


From hydrophonic's link, it seems the shift to disc brakes from rims is largely driven by the shift from metal to CF rims. CF rims: don't present an even surface on the rim; are made in segments and don't have consistent mechanical properties around the rim; and don't dissipate heat as well as metal. So, rim brakes are more dangerous and less effective with CF rims.

There are problems though: disc brakes can add as much as a pound to the bike weight (huge when a CF bike weighs 10-12 lbs) and aerodynamics need work: "Disc brakes were tested in the Texas A&M wind tunnel a decade or so ago, and they sucked," said Damon Rinard, Cervelo's senior advanced R&D engineer.

Volagi may have addressed the weight problem with engineering, but they don't seem to have done anything about the aerodynamic one. At least their web page doesn't seem to address it. Wheels are a huge part of the bike drag. It's not enough to have a swoopy fared frame. The moving parts make more of a difference in all the studies I've seen.
posted by bonehead at 8:45 AM on January 5, 2012


Specialized has been sucking lately. Some of their high end models have such badly designed cable routing that you get shifting problems with both sram and shimano top of the line groupsets. And it is hard to design an uglier thing than their overworked seat stays.

I stay away from racing inspired bikes, uci compliant bikes should be left to professional riders with a full time mechanic and a masseur. There are plenty of good light frames with disc brakes ans more forgiving riding positions for us normal humans.

I hope the uci adopts disc brakes in road bikes. I have seen them more and more in cx bikes, and you can see how they make the races more fun to ride and watch.
posted by Ayn Rand and God at 8:48 AM on January 5, 2012


The caselaw doesn't say this is enforceable, right?

No idea. The thing I saw was a bit of a mishmash for other reasons and so might have failed anyway. But I sure wouldn't want the hassle and cost of defending.
posted by DU at 8:49 AM on January 5, 2012


This kind of conflict is actually quite common, and either the employer or the employee (or both) can be to blame. On one hand, if you are employed in R&D or even as a production engineer, your ideas is what you are being paid for. On the other hand, the employer normally can't just lay claim to all your ideas, including those unrelated to your actual job.

Untangling which ideas belong to the employer and which belong to the employee can be difficult and emotional. Law related to employee inventions is, as a result, one of the most obscure areas of the already pretty arcane field of IP law. But, in general, the "I did it on my own time" defence does not work. And just claiming that "I proposed it in-house, but they just weren't interested" is not going to work if you can't back it up with some evidence.

In general, if you are going to walk out of a company to develop an idea which you had during your employment there and which is going to put you in direct competition with your employer, you better make sure that you get their agreement in writing.
posted by Skeptic at 8:49 AM on January 5, 2012


From the Facebook posting, this:

"We have made many attempts to resolve this (or any issue) with Specialized. It was never our plan (or desire) to have it go this far - we never thought it would. "

Seems to be at odds with this, earlier in the posting:

"I was shocked and dumbfounded as I struggled to decipher the legal jargon presented to me - what could I have possibly done wrong?! There was no warning, no call, no e-mail, no letter, no 'cease and desist' - just a lawsuit."

So yeah, this guy should probably be shutting up now, and getting counsel.
posted by davejay at 8:52 AM on January 5, 2012


It just does my head in that lawyers, being paid a whole lot more than I get, can draft such fucking nonsense and not for a moment realise what idiocy they're creating and foisting on the rest of us.

You should consider that the lawyer most likely didn't draft it with you in mind. Rather, that company's management simply took an off-the-peg contract and neglected to pay a lawyer to at least adapt it to your circumstances.
posted by Skeptic at 9:01 AM on January 5, 2012


Regarding those seat stays, I remember Moots doing something similarly curvy in the 1990s.
posted by scruss at 9:02 AM on January 5, 2012


Well, there is a lot of similarity between this bike and the Specialized bikes shown on this image from bikesnob: the dynamic 'stance', the graphics, even the logo. I think the Volagi guys were just so accustomed, having lived and worked in that world for so long, to designing in the Specialized style that they just wouldn't have realized this, but to this outside (though admittedly not really up to speed on current bike fashions) observer I can see Specialized's point. Not sure if it's legally actionable though.
posted by Flashman at 9:06 AM on January 5, 2012


bonehead:

You're not quite right about the weight. Remember, weight on a tyre is rotating weight. If I can save weight at the rim, that can offset a gain at the hub. So, perhaps you do add a pound or so to the overall weight. How much are we subtracting from the overall rim?

A related question, being a physicist and not an engineer. I wonder if you could run fewer spokes to a CF rim? Just thinking in my head.
posted by kungfujoe at 9:07 AM on January 5, 2012


I suspect that this kind of shit is the single greatest inhibitor of innovation in the developed world.

Hmm, I would have pegged financing, sloth, and sobriety a little higher on that list, but whatever.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 9:26 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


You're not quite right about the weight. Remember, weight on a tyre is rotating weight. If I can save weight at the rim, that can offset a gain at the hub.

That's all true: a pound on the wheels is worth two on the bike, and all that. Here's a cool real-world demonstration of that. I can't imagine climbing l' Alpe de Huez with water in both tires, but that's why I'm not a competition cyclist, I guess.

However, the weight savings at the rim has already been made by switching to CF. The problem is that the non-rotating masses of the disc mechanism is many times more than that of the rim calipers. They might be able to shave a few more grams off the rim by removing the braking surface, but that's more than offset by the extra mass of the mechanisms.
posted by bonehead at 9:37 AM on January 5, 2012


Yep, we all want lighter bikes. But we carry computers and water because the weight trade off is acceptable for what we get. Sometimes we even carry a spare tube and inflation device. I ride with lights at night, and even have tape on my bars.

This bike is aimed at long distance riders, not climbing racers. For the Tour, nope. For the rest of us... maybe.
posted by cccorlew at 9:47 AM on January 5, 2012


> The startup's strategies range from "it would be too expensive to sue us" to "there will be nobody who can sue: the old company will fold without us".

Well, in the spirit of your unsourced anecdotal hyperbole, it's pretty obvious who was carrying the weight of that company, wasn't it?

The competent will always have a natural power over the incompetent, regardless of the legal conventions of ownership. Perhaps a more rational strategy for entrepreneurs is to give up the reins once they hire people better than themselves.
posted by 0xdeadc0de at 9:52 AM on January 5, 2012


The question of whether these contracts are enforceable depends to a large degree on state laws. There are some states where even non-compete clauses are invalid - a company can't stop you from pursuing your profession. And then there are the other places, where Ayn Rand rules the roost and you can contract away anything that makes you, you.
posted by 1adam12 at 9:58 AM on January 5, 2012


Asshole corporate lawyers constantly try to claim all sorts of rights over their employees' work in their non-working hours. Whether a company actually owns those rights and whether any contract an employee signed about IP rights is enforceable is a complicated legal matter that depends greatly on the details.

California is a pretty worker-friendly state, in general work you do on your own time with your own equipment is your own property no matter what your employer might think. Here's a readable summary which might even be correct. People often cite California's freedom for workers as a part of why it's been such an innovative place for technology development. If non-competes were enforceable, 90% of the startups here would never have happened.
posted by Nelson at 10:09 AM on January 5, 2012


Last week Specialized founder and chairman Mike Sinyard was making a stink about the risks of being undercut by Amazon, then he turns around and lobs a lawsuit at a couple of former employees who are trying to start up a small-potatoes business by exploiting a niche of a niche of a niche market. This sort of thing reeks of bullying to me. I'd be fascinated to see what trade secrets and/or designs Specialized alleges were "stolen" by the Volagi guys, because both the Liscio and the Roubaix are pretty vanilla, and the respective seatstay designs are patented or patent-pending.

I would love to have disc brakes on my commuter bike, and maybe even my road bike some day. Disc brakes are awesome. It seems to me that the Volagi guys are really ahead of the curve on this one, and my hunch is that this has as much to do with this lawsuit as anything.
posted by the painkiller at 10:10 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


My SO used to carry lights that alone weighed over 1lb. They were great on unlit country roads.

Of course, his bike was a 35-year-old Raleigh that probably weighed 50lbs to start with. Great bike, held together largely by the layers of paint.
posted by jb at 10:10 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks, hydrophonic.

When I click on a bikesnob link I always look forward to seeing how long it will take him to twist the discussion around to genitals-- his or someone else's-- and how he'll manage to do it:

Of course, the exceptions to all of this are professional bike racers, because unlike us it's their job to ride even when they don't want to. And yes, like any employee, sometimes these professional bike racers need incentives and motivation in order to keep doing what they're doing. For example, one way a directeur sportif might motivate a rider is by putting an eagle on his jersey that will bite off his "pants yabbies" if he slows down: ...

Yes, it's the 2012 Team Saxo Bank kit, as modeled by Alberto Contador: ...

Shown here giving his best "a bird of prey is currently threatening my genitals" grimace: ...


Quite a bit farther into the piece than usual, actually, but satisfyingly inventive and with the expected overtone of castration anxiety on full display.
posted by jamjam at 10:11 AM on January 5, 2012


I suspect that this kind of shit is the single greatest inhibitor of innovation in the developed world.

I'd put it in second place after the patent system, but yeah, it's a pretty big waste.
posted by Mars Saxman at 10:16 AM on January 5, 2012


This bike is aimed at long distance riders, not climbing racers.

Far enough, but I think the weight thing is less important that aerodynamics. Mass, inertia, only matters during acceleration, hill-climbing mostly. It's not a big deal for most distance riding. Aerodynamics is something like 80% of pedaling effort at constant speeds. Discs making the aerodynamics worse is much more of a big deal on a century ride. To me anyway.
posted by bonehead at 10:18 AM on January 5, 2012


I rode last week with a guy on Volagi. My very first thought when I saw it was, "That must be a new Specialized model." The tall chainstays, the arched top tube flowing into the seat stays, the paint job - it was all enough to make me think "Specialized". It was a striking bike - pretty cool. That said, I'm not sure I believe companies can claim to own "basic shapes". Dang lawyers.
posted by sarah_pdx at 10:22 AM on January 5, 2012


By default your employer owns everything which is within the scope of employment, which means According to his facebook post none of these apply to this guy. But I'm sure specialized will claim otherwise. The above 3 points and the quote below are from "Software development: a legal guide, Stephen Fishman, Nolo Press", regarding case law; Miller v. CP Chemicals Inc., F.Supp. 1238 (D.S.C. 1992)
Miller was a supervisor who worked at CP Chemical's quality control lab. He created a program for making computations necessary for in-process adjustments to one of CP's products. Miller was paid by the hour and created the program primarily at home on his own computer during off hours, and without any overtime pay. Nevertheless, the court held that the program was created within the scope of Miller's employment and was therefore owned by CP Chemicas, not Miller. The first and third factors favored CP, while only the second favored Miller.
posted by ecco at 10:28 AM on January 5, 2012


"Disc brakes were tested in the Texas A&M wind tunnel a decade or so ago, and they sucked," said Damon Rinard, Cervelo's senior advanced R&D engineer.

A decade or so ago the only disc brakes available, at least to the mass market, were beefy, oversized models designed for the mountain bike market, so I can understand why this might have been true. There is some talk about creating a new smaller rotor standard for road bikes, and I'm sure that there is a company out there that will be happy to make a shaped "aero" caliper to tuck in behind a fork blade or underneath a chain stay.

Aerodynamics in a crosswind might be what he was referring to, as I would think that a rotor would be less than ideal for that sort of scenario. I bet someone will make an "aero" rotor as well, probably the same outfit that is making the "aero" caliper. Besides, riders of carbon wheelsets already seem to be willing to sacrifice something in terms of crosswind aerodynamics anyways with the deep-section rims that are often used - I find it difficult to imagine that a rotor would make a big difference in anything but an exceptionally nasty crosswind. For most riders, at least.
posted by the painkiller at 10:35 AM on January 5, 2012


There is some talk about creating a new smaller rotor standard for road bikes, and I'm sure that there is a company out there that will be happy to make a shaped "aero" caliper to tuck in behind a fork blade or underneath a chain stay.

Yeah, the point is someone, anyone, Shimano, Avid, etc.. has yet to do that. Heck, it's hard enough to integrate a disc brake with a standard road brifter---is there one that works with Campy yet?

Disc brakes have a lot of advantages, but right now they're a distinctly second choice for road bikes. There's several years of development needed on them. I'd much rather Shimano put their efforts into that than giving us 13- or 15-gear or whatever rear sprockets. Still, if I were in the market for a new bike today, I'd probably still get rim brakes.
posted by bonehead at 10:43 AM on January 5, 2012


Heck, it's hard enough to integrate a disc brake with a standard road brifter---is there one that works with Campy yet?

That development is already under way. I don't know for sure if it will work with Campy (magic 8-ball says: "Signs point to yes.") but Avid makes 2 different models of cable-actuated disc brake calipers that are "road style lever" compatible that you can buy today. In fact, it seems like Volagi uses one of those models with Shimano 'brifters'.

The current holy grail is a road 'brifter' that can use hydraulic disc brake calipers. There are a number of hacks you can buy that will allow you to cable-actuate a hydraulic reservoir, but Shimano and Sram are widely believed to be working on a 'brifter' system that integrates hydraulic braking with cable-actuated shifting for use on disc brake-equipped cyclocross bikes.
posted by the painkiller at 11:00 AM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


It seems to me like there are five areas where Specialized might be making a claim:

-Copying the actual shape or construction of a specialized bike; or patented Specialized technology; or technology that Specialized was developing at the time. This should be easiest for specialized to prove, if it has actually occurred (and if it has Choi and Forsman are screwed). However, I find it odd that Specialized are comparing this bike to bikes in their Roubaix line- the elements of the Volagi design that seem closest to Roubaix bikes are also pretty common to a number of other road bikes, while other distinguishing elements (the curved seat stays, for instance) do not seem like the Roubaix line at all.

-Using some form of proprietary knowledge relating to materials or construction or something, that was somehow acquired while Choi and Forsman worked at Specialized. This, I think, would be harder for Specialized to prove, as they would actually have to demonstrate that the techniques were used, that they were unique to Specialized, and that Choi and Forman had acquired them while working there

-Use of sales contacts, manufacturing contacts, or internal strategic data or marketing plans that were acquired while Choi and Forman worked at Specialized. This is often the reason for a non-compete, and while potentially valid, would be even more difficult for Specialized to prove

-Trademark infringement. Here the snob is absolutely correct in that it would likely come down to "use of red and black in combination" or "use of the capitalized first letter of the company name in some sort of dramatic font," and would pretty much be bullshit (particularly as Volagi aren't trying to pass their bikes off as Specialized, and don't even seem to be competing in a niche that Specialized exploits)

-Enforcement of a non-compete agreement for the sake of enforcement. This is a dick move, and Specialized's chances of success in California are actually rather slim. I know that California courts pretty much won't enforce similar agreements in advertising, and barring Specialized being able to prove any of the above, I can't see how bicycle manufacturing would be different
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 11:25 AM on January 5, 2012


[Volagi doesn't] even seem to be competing in a niche that Specialized exploits

I believe that this is exactly what Volagi is doing - they are building a frame that is going to compete directly with the Roubaix, and intentionally so. I don't know what the proper marketing term is, but both bikes are modeled after racing bikes, still relatively lightweight but with a geometry that is bit shorter in length and taller in height for long-distance comfort, with some bonus shock-absorbing characteristics to match. Basically, a racing bike that doesn't beat you up over long rides.

The thing is that there alot of other manufacturers making frames that are intended to exploit this market as well, and that are also intended to compete directly with the Roubaix, and by extension Volagi is competing with them as well. By no means does Specialized enjoy a monopoly on this niche. The most notable difference being that most of those other manufacturers make a fuller range of bikes and not just one model like Volagi does. Dollars to donuts that some of those other larger-than-Volagi manufacturers have ex-Specialized engineers working for them as well, and they don't seem to be named in this lawsuit.
posted by the painkiller at 12:05 PM on January 5, 2012


They have admitted to taking sales contact info. From their Facebook posting:

- We took names of bicycles shops that were listed in a Specialized database (that is really the extent of our evil deeds, and we admit this wrong-doing and have returned everything). FYI, all this information is readily available online, but we want to come clean.

Specialized might see this as proprietary, even if it is all available in principle. How much provable damage that caused Specialized, I have no idea.
posted by bonehead at 12:10 PM on January 5, 2012


The IP part of this dustup reminds me of an old Onion piece: Microsoft Patents Ones, Zeros

Looks like a cool bike, but then I'm a sucker for new technology, especially new bike technology. We've owned our share of Specialized bikes, and they've been fine bikes, but I hope the little guys win the fight here.
posted by mosk at 1:00 PM on January 5, 2012


I'd like to think Specialized are not just being dicks here. All 6 bikes in my garage are Specialized and I have nothing but love for them.

(I don't have disc brakes on anything other than the trail bikes. Not sure I'd like them on the road bikes. Street bikes, maybe... but no way to convert the existing frames to handle them.)
posted by caution live frogs at 1:47 PM on January 5, 2012


Once again specialized decides to litigate instead of innovate.
posted by Big_B at 2:03 PM on January 5, 2012


Touched base with my "special" contact who worked with these guys, but is no longer with Specialized. Apparently it was pretty widely known throughout the company that Choi was constantly working on developing his business plan on company hours. It was bad enough that it noticeably affected his work and delayed other people's progress on projects.
posted by matt_od at 2:12 PM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


kungfujoe: "A related question, being a physicist and not an engineer. I wonder if you could run fewer spokes to a CF rim? Just thinking in my head."

There's been a general trends toward fewer spokes compensated for by fatter (err, "deeper section") rims on road bikes for at least 10 years now—CF or no. This benefits aerodynamics but not weight. The problem is that you really can't afford to have a spoke break. Not that it happens often, but on a 32-spoke wheel, you can probably limp home with one broken spoke. On a 20-spoke wheel, no.

With a disc-braked wheel, though, it's a much worse idea, as the spokes need to transmit the braking force from the hub to the tire. And you can't have radial spoking. On a rim brake, the braking force is transmitted around the rim, not through the spokes. And because the braking force is also being applied further down the lever arm of the front fork, that needs to be beefier as well.

I agree that disc brakes are cool, and they make sense in some road-cycling applications. But they do have tradeoffs.
posted by adamrice at 3:56 PM on January 5, 2012


Discs also put higher torque on the spokes than rim brakes. Beefier spokes is one of those tradeoffs.
posted by bonehead at 4:24 PM on January 5, 2012


I bet someone will make an "aero" rotor as well, probably the same outfit that is making the "aero" caliper.

This sounds like a slick little project for use in my spare time.

/I've put disc brakes on a road frame
//CX!
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:43 PM on January 5, 2012


For whatever it might be worth, I rode bikes with caliper brakes for years and years and years and never thought I lacked for braking power. Then I rode a bike with disk brakes and it was like "Holy crap, this is AWESOME." I would absolutely be willing to buy a UCI-legal road bike with disk brakes.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 6:07 PM on January 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Specialized is notoriously litigious. Sinyard is a well known loudmouth. The bike industry as a whole, like any other industry, is terribly incestuous about ideas AND employees.
So, really this is not news and The Big Red S should just eat their sour grapes. As much as I like their bikes this suit is ridiculous.

Regarding disc brakes a Note for weight weenies: shimano rim brakes (ultegra 6700) weigh an average of 317 grams according to the shimano website. The Avid BB7 road model with rotor weighs 329 grams.

And Cervelo is excessively exacting with their aerodynamics testing. Not only is their "a decade ago" statement bogus. AND we are talking an affect that matters only in e hundredths of a second differences that matter in professional racing. This will have almost no appreciable affect on your average rider ( in a technical sense any rider up to Category 2 racer).
posted by Severian at 7:23 PM on January 5, 2012


Those seat stays scare the crap out of me.
posted by bryanthecook at 12:35 AM on January 6, 2012


Update:

Judge threw out IP and interference claims, but Choi (of Volagi) was found guilty of breach of contract, and awarded Specialized $1.

So a million bucks or so for the lawyers that instead could have been spent building bikes.
posted by Big_B at 1:33 PM on January 13, 2012


specialized's legal department should now submit to antidopping test.
posted by Ayn Rand and God at 8:21 PM on January 13, 2012


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