BIRMINGHAM, UK (May 27) - Reynolds Cycle Technology has a new flagship product. Previously considered impossible, the 6Al-4V titanium in the form of seamless, mandrel butted tubing is now available to the bike industry. With a 20% increase in strength over the industry standard 3Al-2.5V, this material offers excellent strength-to-weight ratios for premium titanium frames that can combine low weight, supple ride and high durability.
Using a special grade of seamless billet, English titanium specialists Fine Tubes Ltd. (accredited suppliers to Airbus and Rolls Royce) are producing custom drawn raw material for Reynolds, designed for mandrel butting. The technical partnership has been very successful, as several manufacturing obstacles had to overcome at either Fine Tubes or Reynolds, before these tube sets could be produced commercially. The 6Al-4V titanium has been around for some time as a sheet metal, as the treatment shouldn't meet any problems for those who can handle titanium. It is tougher than the usual 3AL-2,5V, while important not to overheat it (in cutting and welding) to avoid oxygen contamination. Welding, as usual, operates in an inert atmosphere.(OB)