Robot Bikes R160 | Bike Check

June 10th, 2016

By Andrew Dodd in Bikes,Tech

Robot Bikes R160 – a different approach to bike design

Robot Bikes is a brand new bike manufacturer based in Monmouthshire.

Unlike many of the small boutique brands out there, Robot Bikes has taken the traditional lugged and bonded construction method and turned it on it’s head!

The lugs are manufactured in Titanium by Renishaw using mind-boggling Additive Manufacturing, and are bonded to Carbon Fibre tubes…

Robot Bikes R160

The Robot Bikes R160 is a mean looking bike in raw carbon and titanium. Although standard geometry looks great, we’re thinking a custom mega long, and slacker custom option would be amazing fun! We’ll see…

What is Additive Manufacturing?

Renishaw are a UK company based in Gloucester. They are the leading resource in additive manufacturing – which is used to build complex metal components for aerospace companies such as Airbus; and incredible medical application such as titanium plates for repairing bone damage.

Additive Manufacturing* uses powdered metal, which is fused together using a high power fibre laser. This technology allows batch production of incredibly complex parts – and has allowed Robot Bikes to think outside the box and perfect the lug system, which has incredibly detailed parts and their totally unique Double Lap Shear Joints.

*the term 3D printing is often bandied about for this type of manufacturing, but the Additive Manufacturing used by Robot Bikes is the same type used in aerospace engineering for safety critical components.

Robot Bikes R160

The Robot Bikes R160 uses a modernised version of the old lugged bicycle frame design – but is produced with the highest quality technology currently available.

Lugs and Glue

Lugged bicycle frames used to be common place, and over the years improvements on this system have raised their head in the MTB world. Most notably was the Raleigh Special Products Division in the 90’s, which experimented with Metal Matrix, Carbon and Titanium configurations using bonded frame tubes.

Robot Bikes has revisited this concept as the manufacturing process now allows for an incredibly strong, stiff and versatile platform.

Here are the main facts about the Robot Bikes R160:

  1. Custom Fit and Geometry – tube length and frame geometry can be chosen, though Robot Bikes have a standard geometry that is tweaked around your height and arm-span.
  2. DW6 suspension – the 6th generation of the DW system not only has the great characteristics of the DW system, but it’s designed to work specifically with the Robot  Bikes lugged frame design. The frame tubes themselves do not have to support the shock or any part of the system.
  3. Titanium additive Manufactured lugs offer ultimate stiffness and support for the frame tubes and suspension platform
  4. The lugs have unique double lap shear joints – which mean the frame tubes are supported both inside and out – offering a huge bonding surface for ultimate reliability and support.
  5. BB yoke area has threads for a zero-creak BB interface
  6. BB yoke area can be completely custom to allow for geometry options etc
  7. Mitsubishi-Rayon pre-pregnated Carbon composite tubing is very stiff and light, but has the compliance that carbon is famous for.
  8. Two part epoxy adhesive creates a permenant bond with the lug system that is more efficient than anything used even in aerospace or Formula 1 currently.
Robot Bikes R160

Even the cable ports look awesome on the Robot Bikes R160- probably the cleanest we’ve seen!


Robot Bikes R160

The BB yoke of the Robot Bikes R160 is the hube of the bike. Intricate manufacturing has produced an incredible looking base for the transmission and suspension.

Geometry and frame details

  1. Head angle* – 65.5degrees
  2. Seat angle* – 73.5degrees
  3. Chainstay length* – 430mm
  4. Bottom bracket drop* – 10mm
  5. ZS44/ZS56 headset
  6. 73mm thread bottom bracket shell
  7. 142mm x 12mm rear axle
  8. ISCG tabs
  9. 31.6mm seat post, stealth compatible
  10. 216 x 63mm shock
  11. M8 x 22mm shock hardware
  12. 142mm x 12mm rear axle
  13. 27.5in wheel size
  14. Custom Fit frame price £4395
  15. *recommended ‘standard’ geometry. Custom available.
Robot Bikes R160

Clean 142 x 12mm drop outs.

Robot Bikes R160

The DW 6 system works harmoniously with the R160 frame – we can’t wait to ride on!

Robot Bikes R160

Probably the cleanest BB yoke design out there – a lot going on but looks so well thought out.

Robot Bikes R160Robot Bikes R160

Find out more in this video:


What do you think of the Robot Bikes R160?

Does the crazy technology float your boat?

Let us know in the comments below…





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