© 2013 by Storck Bicycle
|Storck Carbon Wunderbike
Seit Zehn Jahren zählt das vollgefederte Adrenalin zur Weltspitze.
Nun bestätigt zu unserer großen Freude das südkalifornische Redaktionsteam von Mountainbike Action was man hierzulande schon längst weiß: das Adrenalin Carbon ist eine Rakete
To celebrate ten years worth of monster garage madness, Storcks latest creation appears surprisingly… traditional. Remember back to the last Storck we tested? Its swooping monocoque carbon Y frame with parallel-link suspension was straight out of the future. It
was very wild. Well, the Adrenalin Carbon takes it to another level, even if it doesn’t get showy about it.
WILD IS OH SO RELATIVE
In Germany, the meaning of wild goes much deeper than a curvy chassis and futuristic look. Take the Adrenalin Carbons suspension linkage. It has 14 bearings. Not bushing bearings; we are talking real bearings with steel rollers or steel balls. The mix of spherical, radial and axial (thrust) bearings results in a linkage that has absolutely no side play or stiction. These pivots were designed with input from a bearing specialist from SKF. Industry standard bearings are used throughout and are readily available.
Kinematics are the dynamics of motion apart from considerations of mass or force. Yes, that was straight from Markus Storck, the mad scientist behind the Adrenalin, and Dr. Erik Gross of the Technical University of Hamburg. Applied to mountain bikes, it means sensitive suspension with little drivetrain and braking influence. Through computer simulation, it is possible to position the pivots exactly where they need to be to achieve this. If you can read German, the detailed explanation of the simulation technology employed can be found in Erik Gross book: “The Determination of Operating Loads, Dimensioning, Structural Mechanics and Chassis Technology of Mountain Bikes.” The book sounds like a sure cure for insomnia.
Although it looks like large tubes of carbon bonded together, the Adrenalin is an honest-to-goodness carbon monocoque. The frame is laid up in a mold with preimpregnated
carbon fiber, pressurized to shape with a bladder, and then baked. The Adrenalins diamond frame is a solid, seamless carbon form from front to back. There are aluminum inserts for the integrated headset bearings, main pivot bearing, bottom bracket threads and seatpost clamp. The bell crank pivots off an aluminum bearing housing that is riveted into position and then bonded to the back of the seat tube.
Storck has the frame made in China, and the double butted aluminum swingarm is assembled in America. Back in Germany, the carbon is inspected for optical variation,
then weighed and checked for stiffness. After that, the alignment of both the aluminum and carbon structures is verified before final assembly. Then stiffness, alignment and linkage operation are checked and tested again. While our first-run test frame used aluminum bell crank halves, yours will come with carbon links. The carbon cuts 4.6 ounces off the frame and gives a final figure of six pounds even for the frame and shock. Not a record-setting figure, but a respectable weight for a sturdy frame that is designed for aggressive cross-country riding. Soon to be available from Storck is a carbon swingarm assembly and aluminum bolt kit that will lower frame weight to 5.25 pounds.
ITS ALL ABOUT KRAFTWERK
Storck did not mess around when they built up the Adrenalin Carbon. They specd a complete Shimano XT Disc gruppo. Finishing out the hardware is a Storck Fat Tube Pro Alu seatpost, Fizik Gobi steel-rail saddle, Syntace adjustable bar, and Storck barrel grips. The wheels are custom built using long-butt 14/15 spokes. Storck buttons down that pure finish with a classy conical carbon stem spacer. “Shes a model and shes lookin very good…”
TIME TO GET WILD
Several features converge to make riding the Storck such a positive experience: Schwalbes 2.25 tires pedal well for their size. The chassis is extremely stiff and very responsive. Even the soaking-wet weight of 27.7 pounds is light for a bike of this caliber. Then theres the suspension. The suspension works so well that you do not even think about it at first. Numerous times we got off the bike and pushed down on the rear end. We were sure it had more travel than claimed. Once home the tape measure confirmed 3.7-inches of movement. It feels more like five. The Adrenalin Carbon proves that Storcks computer-generated kinematics is no advertising hyperbole. It also proves that when the travel is confined to four inches, its possible to design great suspension without Horst Links. The Storck does not
buck or lock and remains totally active and unaffected by pedaling or braking.
SIT UP AND RELAX
Storck sent the bike to us with 200psi in the shock, and the suspension was supple
with that amount. Its a shock setting that is approximately 120 percent of the
riders weight. The shock comes with a lockout, but there will never be a need to
use it. Storck worked closely with Fox, and the Float is valved specifically for their
suspension kinematics. Its designed to work without a platform shock, and its trail
performance is proof positive of that. The rear feels perfectly balanced with the
Manitou Black coil fork at full extension. Its amazing just how well the stiff chassis works on the trail. It steers straight across the nastiest cambered terrain with no hesitation. Even while clambering up the gnarliest of climbs, the steering remains light and the chassis digs in and powers out.
ARE THERE ANY GLITCHES?
Remember those 2.25-inch Schwalbe tires? Well, they really measure 2.15 inches,
and the rear tire is too light duty. We were on the bike for only ten minutes before
the rear pinch flatted at 40psi. We’ve been running 48psi since. When riding with knee pads, you will catch the exposed gear cable running down the right side of the wide top tube.
WILD ON GERMANY
On paper, the Adrenalin Carbon has barely enough travel to be an aggressive trailbike.
It only has 4.7 inches of travel up front and 3.7 inches in the rear, for Petes sake! But do not let the numbers fool you. While other bikes try to impress the old American way (bigger is better, more travel must equal a better ride) Storck is taking a different approach that may be the beginning of a trail-wide trend. Storck has proven with the Adrenalin Carbon that it is not how much travel a bike has, it is how well that travel works.
Just take it out and go for it. The Storck is wildly aggressive!