Weapon X: 9lb Light Bike Build
Apr 4, 2019
article & images by Nick Salazar
Every time we do one of these project builds, we learn something. And each time, we try to go in a different direction. Our first real project was the Lighten Up bike, a true tri bike with traditional aerobars and an aero TT frame. Next up came Project Liberty, an aero road bike with lightweight sensibilities. Today's project, Weapon X, might be considered the third in that series, and it attempts to shed all weight without being an aero pig. But we've also done many other project bikes in our Service Course series. Each project has its own goals, its own priorities, and its own compromises. In some cases, we have free reign to determine the inputs, outputs, and constraints. In other cases, we are bound by a particular athlete's sponsorship obligations, budget, time, and individual priorities. But whatever we do, we attempt to make each bike the best version of itself, whatever the priorities are.
Weapon X is meant to be a lightweight road bike. It excels at climbing, and would be an ideal choice for steep uphill time trials. But it's also extremely fun to just tool around with. The first few pedal revolutions on an ultralight bike are unlike anything you can feel on more standard fare. It's fun. It's exciting. And it makes you want to be on the bike more. And isn't that the ultimate goal?
As always, readers are invited to their own conclusions. Feel free to agree, disagree, or fall in the middle. Most readers will find at least one component of this build to do differently. That's great! Go build your own Weapon X, your own Project Liberty. That's one of the exciting elements of this sport: the freedom to do things your way.
For more photos and details, delve into the gallery below. Thanks for reading!