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Astro Expands Alloy Frame Production and Starts in Carbon Frames

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Renowned frame maker Astro Engineering Co. Ltd. is not hampered by longer lead-times resulting from the China labour crisis. The companys main production facilities are in Vietnam, so theres no problem finding sufficient and skilful workers.

Astro Expands Alloy Frame Production and Starts in Carbon Frames

Renowned frame maker Astro Engineering Co. Ltd. is not hampered by longer lead-times resulting from the China labour crisis. The company’s main production facilities are in Vietnam, so there’s no problem finding sufficient and skilful workers.

Thanks to that Astro is expanding its aluminium frame production in Vietnam. Production will be enlarged this year from 600,000 to 800,000 frames. And, as the company is able to deliver its frames completely painted upon request Astro’s paint facilities in Vietnam are also expanding.

New at Astro, and shown at 2010 Taipei Cycle Show last March, are carbon frames. This year the frame maker is starting up production of monocoque carbon frames. For 2011, the company is planning an output of 20,000 units, which can be delivered completely painted. The two new carbon frames for 2010 – 2011 are a monocoque road frame and a monocoque MTB hardtail. The road frame comes in 7 sizes – from 480 – 600 mm. The 540 mm frames weighs 950 grams. The MTB hardtail monocoque comes in 3 sizes; small, medium and large and weighs 1.15 kg in the 480mm version.

Also launched by Astro at this year’s Taipei Cycle was XTrolite Superlight Tubing. In addition to 80% higher yield strength, XTrolite also offers 40% higher tensile strength compared to 6061alloy. Astro also claims this tube material offers remarkable strength and weight characteristics, as well as exceptional manufacturing capabilities. Asked what Astro means by that, a company spokesman said that XTrolite tubes are suited for automated welding and offer very smooth welds.

At Taipei Cycle Astro showed two XTrolite frames – a road race frame weighing 980 grams in the 48 cm version offering remarkable strength and stiffness characteristics, according to Astro. The MTB hardtail in XTrolite weighs 1.23 kg at 42 cm.

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