2012 Model No Longer Available
Ridley Helium - 2012 - 2012 BCS
Who can forget stage 9 of the 2011 Tour de France as we watched horrifying imagery of Vacansoleil-DCM's Johnny Hoogerland as his breakaway companion Juan-Antonio Flecha was struck by a French media car, launching Hoogerland into a barbed wire fence at roadside. The disturbing video still induces cringes every time we watch it. While he would later need 33 stitches to close the gashes he sustained, team doctors patched him up as best they could at the scene, and put him back on the Ridley Helium he'd just crashed. Surprisingly, it was hardly worse for wear. He finished the stage, riding into the Polka Dot jersey and into the storied annals of Tour hardmen.
It's nothing short of a miracle that Hoogerland's racing career didn't end in that gruesome moment, but also pretty spectacular that despite the Helium being Ridley's lightest bike, it is also their most battle-hardened, having endured punishment on the cobbles and hors categorie climbs all across Europe. It is a shining example of carbon fiber's supreme durability and longevity in the hands of intelligent design. The Helium tips the scales just over 900 grams, which is less than that of Ridley's pave-flagship Excalibur. This is accomplished through its use of superior grades of carbon fiber. The Helium uses 30-ton carbon with areas of 40-ton and 50-ton reinforcements (in comparison to the 24-ton carbon used on the Excalibur.) By using higher-grade carbon, Ridley can use less carbon in the production process, netting a lower frame weight. The Helium also utilizes full carbon dropouts and doesn't use any aluminum in the head tube bearing races to reduce weight further. And when you factor in the detail that you need to use a conventional seatpost on an Excalibur, but you don't on a Helium, the real net difference in weight is well over a half-pound . Unlike the Excalibur, the Helium features an integrated seatmast design akin to the super-aero Ridley Noah. We will cut down the carbon fiber seat tube of the frame based on your saddle-to-BB measurement. You'll use a custom Ridley seat clamp that seamlessly mates to the seat tube and offers three different positions to modify your effective seat angle. The use of this integrated seat tube/seatpost maximizes frameset stiffness when you're putting the bike under serious in-the-saddle pressure. The integrated post, combined with the frame's matte carbon fiber finish, gives the Helium an extremely fast, post-industrial tool aesthetic that looks positively deadly.
The Ridley Helium is available in Black/White, and comes in 5 sizes from X-Small to X-Large. Given its compact geometry, we strongly suggest that you focus on the virtual top tube length as you make a determination of the proper size. Please provide us with your BB-Saddle Rail height in the "Comments" section of our order form so we can properly cut down the seat tube for delivery. Please note that the post's maximum cut-off length from the top of the seatpost is 60mm. The Helium comes with a matching Ridley 4ZA monocoque full carbon fiber fork and a proprietary FSA integrated headset. It requires an English bottom bracket, and a 34.9mm front derailleur. One final note on sizing: on all sizes the top of the seat tube is 235mm above the center of the top tube, not including seat mounting hardware. The standard Helium seat clamp has 18mm in height adjustment, and comes with a 1mm micro-spacer for small adjustments. Ridley also offers an aftermarket clamp that provides 40mm of height adjustment.
- Flex seat stays increase comfort during long days in the saddle
- Painted using real paint in Belgium—not decals like your last frame
- Ridley's 10-year warranty means you may be passing the Helium along to your next of kin
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