This article originally published on BikeRadar
Parked in a corner of the Focus tent at the Eurobike 2013 Demo Day was this fine-looking Izalco Max disc prototype, claimed to weigh an extraordinarily light 6.2kg (13.7lb). Look closely, though – the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 road bike has bolt-thru axles front and rear.
Disc brakes on road bikes were a strong trend at Eurobike, with a number of top brands augmenting their ranges with them. Front and rear bolt-thru axles, however, are still a rarity. For the Izalco Max, Focus have used a 100x15mm front axle, a 142x12mm model at the back, 140mm discs and an AX-Lightness Stream 55 wheelset.
"With this concept we are one of the first," said a Focus rep, who was keen to emphasise that the bike is a statement of intent and direction rather than a finished article. However, a disc-ready Izalco Max could make Focus' 2015 lineup, BikeRadar were told.
A bolt-thru axle – almost ubiquitous on longer travel mountain bikes – should cause a major improvement in the alignment consistency of the disc in the caliper. It should also help avoid watt-haemorrhaging friction between the disc and caliper, and provide strength to withstand more powerful braking forces and prevent the disc pulling the wheel out of the dropouts. The drawback is that you can't remove the wheel quickly to fix a puncture or mechanical.
Danish company Principia released a Revolution frame with double bolt-thru axles over the summer.
For more information on Focus bikes see www.focus-bikes.com.
Sam started as a trainee reporter on daily newspapers in the UK before moving to South Africa where he contributed to national cycling magazine Ride for three years. After moving back to the UK he joined Procycling as a staff writer in November 2010.
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