2018 Alchemy Balius
Though for a time, the rise in popularity of carbon as a material turned getting a custom frame into a retro steel lovefest, that need no longer be the case. The Alchemy Balius comes from Denver, Colorado where they produce all their own carbon fiber tubing so that you can get a completely customized frame, or order one of the five stock sizes they make available for the Balius cyclocross racing bike.
Now to some it might sound like a luxury bordering on extravagance to buy a custom cyclocross bike. But that would be the wrong way to think about it. For one, customizing it would be your chance to build the perfect bike for the type of riding you want to do. You don’t need to be a serious cross racer, in fact you don’t need to race cross at all. Here’s your chance to build up the ultimate gravel bike, or indeed cross racer, to suit your size, weight and type of riding. Alchemy has the capabilities of tuning each tube to your personal needs, and then wrapping the carbon fiber junctions to offer the exact geometry from seriously aggressive to more relaxed and endurance oriented. And everything in between as well. Junction wrapping also helps keep the weight down and gives the bike a striking silhouette.
Balancing stiffness and compliance is the art of the bike manufacturer, and allows you to hop on a bike that offers the precise handling that will get you through technical single track and laid back double track alike. And since the Balius has the same special aero profile for the top tube and down tube as the Helios, it has an ultra-stiff front end that will guarantee responsive handling. Combined with the Alchemy gravel-specific tapered fork, the Balius will offer the type of quick handling that will work well with the wider tires that the frame can accommodate. If you are used to road skinnies, you won’t have to worry about that slow, ponderous feeling that you may fear will result from fattening up your tires. Nothing could be further from the sensations you will get on the Balius. And if you are up on your Greek mythology – or have access to Google – you’ll remember that Balius was an immortal horse of Achilles, which may give a hint at how durable and reliable this bike is meant to be. The rear triangle has been given an unusual shape at the dropout area to provide additional strength at that important junction and to allow for a greater amount of vertical compliance, since you will likely be spending more time on rugged terrain and will appreciate the cushioned ride. And 12mm through axles will make sure your wheels are securely attached and up to the challenging terrain.
To ensure the frame’s durability and rigidity, Alchemy has turned to a press fit 86 bottom bracket to help them to create a mega wide BB shell to work with the big tube shapes and increase the stiffness of the whole, while allowing for a wide range of crank options. To keep everything looking clean, the frame has internal cable routing for mechanical and electronic groupsets. You can run up to 38mm tires with the Balius, which will have you prepared for dustbowl adventures or springtime mud fests equally well. Though it is among the frames that Alchemy offers in full custom, the Balius is also available in five stock sizes from 52cm to 61cm, and there are 12 stock colors available with matte of gloss finishes.
The Alchemy Balius is ready to become your top-quality gravel or cross bike that can handle the toughest road conditions in comfort and style.
Fork: Alchemy gravel specific tapered fork
Rear Stay: Carbon
Fork Axle: 12mm Thru x 100mm
Head Tube Diameter Top: 44mm
Head Tube Diameter Bottom: 44mm
Steerer Tube: 1 1/8” - 1 1/4”
Headset Included: Yes, Cane Creek
Bottom Bracket Type: BB86 Press Fit
Cable Routing: Internal, mechanical or electric
Front Derailleur Mount: 34.9mm
Wheel Size: 700c
Max Tire Clearance: 38mm
Brake Type: Disc
Seatpost Diameter: 31.6mm
Seatpost Included: No
Seat Collar Included: Yes
Rear Axle: 12mm Thru x 142mm
Sizes: 52cm | 54cm | 56cm | 58cm | 61cm | Full custom sizes and geometry available
Colors: 12 stock colors available with matte or gloss finish