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Friday, April 26, 2013


Although the Sea Otter Classic is more known as a mountain bike event, the road side of things didn't disappoint, large in part to Calfee Design deciding that the four-day festival would be the ideal launching ground for their prototype Manta (as in manta ray).

What Calfee has in the pipeline isn’t just an updated Dragonfly; no, this was an all new platform and fresh territory for the Northern California-based builder. Oversized carbon tubes, a tapered steerer, and a massive 65mm bottom bracket shell housing a Look Zed 2 crank are all highlights of the new frame, but that’s only half the story. A pivotless rear suspension tucked into the mono-seatstay that allows 1cm of elastomer dampened travel is really what the new design is all about.

The Manta's rear shock is clean, elegant, and simple. 10mm of elastomer dampened travel creates a unique ride that changes the feel of a road bike as you know it. 

The frame has been in the works for the past five years and is by no means designed as a “comfort bike”—it’s all about performance. “A smoother ride would give athletes a competitive edge in allowing them to be fresher by the end of the race, as well as descending faster and safer”, says Craig Calfee. 


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