Black Labels, Tubular Braids, and
The RXRS is an evolution of TIME’s
RXR. The changes are fairly subtle,
a BB30, improved stiffness and an
available fully integrated Di2 set up.
The tubes are the same aggressively
aero, angular shapes with an
integrated seat mast that make the
frame look like a time-trial bike
before you build it up.
For our test bike we choose the Black
Label paint scheme and new SRAM
Red Black. We like double tap, we
like the ultra low weight and the
option to run the new blacked out
color scheme was just too good to pass
up. Those giant black chain rings
and black components appear almost
specifically designed for the black
label RXRS. The entire package
is striking, and with SRAM AL 30
Gold wheels our large tipped the
scales at only 15 pounds, 5 ounces.
That the RXRS pushes the
technological envelope of what is
possible with carbon production is, at
first, not very obvious. On its surface
in seems a bit old-fashioned.
Tube and lug construction, external
mechanical cable routing, bolted alloy
rear dropouts, and the frame alone
pushes 1, 100 grams. This is the most
advanced carbon frame in the world?
What sets the RXRS apart occurs
at the level of the weave. By weaving
tubular braids TIME can fine-tune
the weave itself. In the steer tube,
bi-directional kevlar is added for
strength; in the tube braids, a material
called Vectran is woven in unidirectionally for dampening.
each area. An opportunity they use to
include nanoparticles in resin destined
for lugs and other high-stress areas.
Up to eight customized tubular
braids are then pulled over tube
skeletons. This is raw carbon, not pre-
impregnated with resin. TIME uses
their resin transfer molding (RTM)
process to actually inject the resin
into the carbon when it is in the mold.
This allows TIME to precisely control
the quantity and type of resin used in
Another benefit of this style of
production is smooth interior walls,
resulting in stiffer, lighter and more
resilient frames. If you’ve been paying
attention to carbon production
the last three years you will have
noticed a big spike in smooth-wall
chatter. TIME carbon has had
smooth interior walls since their fork
production in the late 1990s, a full
decade before most of the industry.
carbon, is maintaining a consistent
ride quality throughout the size range.
The same tubes made a centimeter
or two longer frequently go from
stiff to wet noodle. To address this
TIME uses larger section tubes for
the big bikes, and has computer
modeled each lug separately, creating
unique lug construction for each size.
To ensure that stiffness gets to the
road, the RXRS has asymmetric
chain stays, something TIME has
been doing for the last six years.
One of the major issues with lugged
construction, whether in steel or in
Each and every tube has a very
specific task under load, and exactly
what those loads are can be reverse
engineered from looking at the very