Aethos Inspired Chinese 6.3kg Build with Quality Chinese Components ( ICAN FL1 ) - listing updated for final build

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Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

I owned an S-Works Aethos for a while and it was by far the nicest road bike I have ridden (probably over 20). However, aesthetically it didn’t work for me and so flipped it quickly. I have since been suffering ‘seller regret’ and keep thinking I might by a second hand one at some point to see whether I can live with it.

Anyway, roll forward to this week and was watching Joe’s video on ChinaCycling about the BigRock Sohea, which he has started selling on PandaPodium and got me thinking about an experiment to see how close it a well built Chinese frame can get on ride quality, but with the improved aesthetics (at least in my opinion!) of full cable integration. Looks wise there are clear differences, but the geometry is pretty much identical.

Picture below, but there is so little online about them, this is the all there is. My view is that whilst Aethos inspired, it is clearly not a clone; fully integrated cabling, T47 BB, scalloped seat tube, different fork profile, etc

Image


The lighter Team version in size 56 comes in at 675g for Frame and 285g for the forks (plus metal parts, which I think includes the T47 sleeve, and the website suggests about 60g) - if they are within tolerance, that puts it very close to the Aethos).

However …. My only reservation is taking a $1700 punt on a frame that, if it is rubbish, I will end up effectively throwing in the bin (as it will be worth almost nothing second hand, given the brand is unrecognised in the UK).

I therefore looked at alternatives (some of which are picked up the threads below. The one that caught my eye was the ICAN FL1. A really new frame (UCI registered in 2024). A bit heavier than the Team Bigrock, but pretty much the same as the standard. It should be light enough for me to get a build sub 6kg with Ultegra di2. Frame picture below, but not much online at this stage:

Image

I am a long term advocate for Chinese bike brands (early adopter of Farsports 38 for those on here for a while, and currently own a wide array of parts) and think it is really fascinating to see these businesses develop really fabulous products.

When considering the build, I realised quite how much I have bought! The build list is further down the thread, other than the Groupset is mainly from China - it includes the cost for each item, so total build should be around £3,300

If I can make it happen, I am off to Majorca on 14 April which would give me a chance to put some good miles into it, and then in May off the Alps with 2 friends. That could be really interesting as we all ride 56 with Speedplay pedals and they both ride Aethos, so can all do a comparison.

Anyway, if you like China direct products stuff, what this space …. Subscribing to the thread would also help it build momentum (rather than get added to a long list of ‘good ideas’ that ended up in bin Image)


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Last edited by Beancouter on Fri Mar 15, 2024 7:52 am, edited 9 times in total.

Ritxis
Posts: 1146
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:00 pm
Location: San Sebastian

by Ritxis

Beancouter wrote:
Fri Mar 15, 2024 7:52 am
I owned an S-Works Aethos for a while and it was by far the nicest road bike I have ridden (probably over 20). However, aesthetically it didn’t work for me and so flipped it quickly. I have since been suffering ‘seller regret’ and keep thinking I might by a second hand one at some point to see whether I can live with it.

Anyway, roll forward to this week and was watching Joe’s video on ChinaCycling about the BigRock Sohea, which he has started selling on PandaPodium and got me thinking about an experiment to see how close it got to the ride quality, but with the improved aesthetics (at least in my opinion!) of full cable integration. Looks wise there are clear differences, but the geometry is pretty much identical. Some pictures below, but there is so little online about them, this is the all there is.

My view is that whilst Aethos inspired, it is clearly not a clone; fully integrated cabling, T47 BB, scalloped seat tube, different fork profile, etc

Worth noting, if it does work out, and it it does bother me, i will get the BigRock (BigCock) logos removed from the frame, and reposition something more subtle somewhere else!

Image

Image




Image

The lighter Team version in size 56 comes in at 675g for Frame and 285g for the forks (plus metal parts, which I think includes the T47 sleeve, and the website suggests about 60g) - if they are within tolerance, that puts it very close to the Aethos).

With a Dura Ace build, and my FS Feder’s, should give me a build weight of about 5.8kg.

My only reservation is taking a $1700 punt on a frame that, if it is rubbish, I will end up effectively throwing in the bin (as it will be worth almost nothing second hand, given the brand is unrecognised in the UK).

I have reached out to Joe to see if he or BigRock can do me a deal to take some of the risk away, but hasn’t yet come back to me.

If I can make it happen, I am off to Majorca on 14 April which would give me a chance to put some good miles into it, and then in May off the Alps with 2 friends. That could be really interesting as we all ride 56 with Speedplay pedals and they both ride Aethos, so can all do a comparison.

I am a long term advocate for Chinese bike brands (early adopter of Farsports 38 for those on here for a while, and currently own a wide array of parts) and think it is really fascinating to see these businesses develop really fabulous products.

Anyway, if you like Chinese stuff, what this space …. Subscribing to the thread would also help it build momentum (rather than get added to a long list of ‘good ideas’ that ended up in bin Image)


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Didn't you know the Onirii One? has been available for a long time https://es.aliexpress.com/item/10050047 ... pt=glo2esp

or this other Onirii clone https://es.aliexpress.com/item/10050046 ... pt=glo2esp

by Weenie


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kode54
Posts: 3771
Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 9:39 pm

by kode54

The Onirii looks closer to the Aethos than the Big Rock. And if the OP didn’t like the look of the real Aethos with sloping top tube, the Big Rock accentuates it even more. No idea.
- Factor Ostro VAM Disc
- Factor LS Disc
- Specialized Aethos Disc
- Sturdy Ti Allroad Disc
- Guru Praemio R Disc

Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

kode54 wrote:The Onirii looks closer to the Aethos than the Big Rock. And if the OP didn’t like the look of the real Aethos with sloping top tube, the Big Rock accentuates it even more. No idea.
I didn’t say my problem aesthetically was with the sloing tube. Also, in a 56, the Bigrock and aethos the geo is identical (maybe 1mm on the BB drop)- so visually the sloping tube will be the same.

Also, my point wasn’t that I wanted an aethos clone! I want something which is an evolution.

Finally, I have looked at the Onirii and haven’t discounted it entirely. My research (and again little in the public domain) is that the real weights are higher in real life. I would also like to buy through PodiumPanda as I am keen to support Joes business.


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alanyu
Posts: 1716
Joined: Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:10 pm

by alanyu

Pardus super evo was launched last year. 680 g frame and 290 g fork, and it looks much more different (better) than Aethos.

Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

Funny! I contacted Joe about the Pardus and also the European (French) distributor but didnt get any advice on how to source in the UK.

I will go back to the purpose of the build - the ‘test’ is how close to an Aethos can a quality Chinese manufacturer get, in terms of ride and build quality.


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Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

So, it is looking increasingly likely I will buy the ICAN FL1.

From what I see they appear to have a good reputation for build quality (there isn’t much out there, but what does exist seems to be positive; eg Hambini). Frame appears relatively new to their range.

The details for a 56:

Frame - 845g +/- 30g
Forks - 350g +/- 10g

So not Uber light but about the same as the Bigrock (standard model).

Again. Geometry almost identical to Aethos.

Not sure if I will build with Dura Ace, Ultegra or 105 Di2. I have all 3, just depends how much I can be bothered to swap them all around!

I am guessing the weight could be sub 6kg with Ultegra di2 (most of the bits are a direct swap from my Synapse hi mod).

Below is a stock picture in 54

Image


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Last edited by Beancouter on Mon Mar 18, 2024 6:38 am, edited 3 times in total.

Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

Frame ordered and, so far, the experience is excellent.

I had lots of questions, all promptly answered, including a copy of the UCI registration certificate and headset specs (FSA No55 ACR’)

Given i have the Avian Canary bars, didn’t need the ones packaged with the bike, nor the seatpost (will use Roval Alpinist), which brought the price down. Helpfully, the Avians ship will all of the required top cap, spacers etc, so should be a simple fit

Frame should be around 2-3 weeks delivery, so hopefully i can build for my Majorca trip in April.

I think the build will be:

1) Ultegra Di2 Shifter set - lightly tuned, so should less than 100 grams on the DA

2) SRAM Red crankset with 2 spec options;

- 5 bolt spider + Extralite RC2; should be about 475 grams
-Xcadey 4 bolt PM + Ultegra 12 speed rings. This will add about 120g to the total

3) Farsports 30mm (or 50mm) on RD230 hubs

4) Dura Ace cassette and chain,

Should be interesting - As i say, my aethos was just a great bike to ride; the ICAN is never going to match it, but looking forward to seeing how good it gets!





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Last edited by Beancouter on Tue Mar 19, 2024 7:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

fsp15923
Posts: 49
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2021 6:07 am

by fsp15923

Just a question: Where online do I source the ICAN FL1? Is there an Allieexpress link, perhaps? I am your build thread with interest.

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Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

fsp15923 wrote:Just a question: Where online do I source the ICAN FL1? Is there an Allieexpress link, perhaps? I am your build thread with interest.

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I contacted them through icanbikes.com; after completing the initial contact sheet, it has all been done by WhatsApp.

It isn’t currently on their consumer site icancycling.com


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Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

Build list below; I have split it out to show the bits I have sourced direct from China, and the other stuff. The current total projected weight is about 6.3kg

I have also show the individual prices so you can see how the build cost has come together. Currently about £3,500, with power meter and Ultegra Di2.

Image



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Last edited by Beancouter on Thu Mar 21, 2024 9:19 am, edited 3 times in total.

Lecoops
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2024 5:26 pm

by Lecoops

Loving this, & can't wait to see the end result! I've been toying around with getting an Aethos on 0% interest, or building something similar with one of these frame sets. Hope I'm not being cheeky, but how much USD did ICAN charge for the frameset without handlebars & seatpost ?

Hopefully the frameset also fits 32mm tyres. Different mm widths diferent companies are saying on a very similar looking frame..

tiz92
Posts: 208
Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 3:36 pm

by tiz92

Also interest in how this is going :D

Beancouter
Posts: 1121
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:04 pm

by Beancouter

Lecoops wrote:Loving this, & can't wait to see the end result! I've been toying around with getting an Aethos on 0% interest, or building something similar with one of these frame sets. Hope I'm not being cheeky, but how much USD did ICAN charge for the frameset without handlebars & seatpost ?

Hopefully the frameset also fits 32mm tyres. Different mm widths diferent companies are saying on a very similar looking frame..
You’re not being cheeky - all prices in the table above in GBP!

Will be a period of silence until the frame arrives!


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Lecoops
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2024 5:26 pm

by Lecoops

Apologies, can't believe I missed the costs now you've pointed it out.

Thank you

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