By Dielle DSouza for BigRush
Furan is a highly volatile, flammable liquid, with a boiling point close to room temperature. Looking closer at Psynyde Bikes’ new baby, you’ll understand why it’s been named so. It is sleek, strong and amplifies the adrenaline in you to an explosive level. It’s also the team’s first ever production bike.
For more than 17 years, Psynyde Bikes has been painstakingly handcrafting and delivering custom bikes to happy customers. With two decades within spitting distance, it was time to shift gears.
Sudeep Mane explains, “Furan is our first product with standard sizing and geometry compared to the custom frames Praveen (Prabhakaran) has been building, where he makes a bike according to the rider’s body, much like the way a suit is tailored to a customer.”It’s a tall order and the going hasn’t been easy. But the vision made its presence felt from the very beginning. The lot at Psynyde Bikes are true blue mountain bikers, so it was hardly a Eureka moment when they decided that their first production bike would be a hardtail MTB.
“We envisioned one that could go uphill as well as bomb downhill; a bike that could handle three-hour climbs and then allow the rider to jump down cliffs and blaze off steep chutes; a bike which would fire up the trail the moment you hit dirt, a do-it-all hardtail that was light yet stiff, while still capable of taking the edge off the rough terrain,” recalls Sudeep.
It was during a brainstorming session one afternoon when the team stumbled across the chemical they finally named the bike after. Furan – the chemical – is soluble in common organic solvents, even slightly in water, and is a starting point to other specialty chemicals. “What better name for our first production bike which can take on any terrain, glides under the radar and is built to accelerate the fun on trails!” says Sudeep.
The numbers and calculations came in hot and heavy, were narrowed down and the first prototype was brought into being. Nearly a year went by with real world testing with the team’s riders who are some of India’s top mountain bikers so small tweaks could be made to perfect the geometry and build. Sudeep points out, “We’ve worked a lot on the clearance for the chainstays, and learnt that providing an MTB with ample tyre clearance is the foundation of a good product.”
Of course, design, engineering and testing cost money, so Psynyde turned to crowdfunding, gaining support from the cycling community and interest from a few investors. The math for the 6000 series aluminium hydroformed tubes that make up the Furan’s chassis didn’t look promising in India, so the company went East, to China, where it has collaborated with an established unit that welds the frames to its strict quality standards.
So what do you get with the Furan? You’ll find a tapered head tube, internal cable routing, compact rear end with a wider bottom bracket for stability, extended top tube length, slack head angle combined with a short stem and riser bars, and a 120mm suspension fork “to get the rider through gnarly, steep terrain”.
The Shimano groupset for beginners comes at Rs 36,000, the one for intermediate riders costs Rs 52,000 and experts with advanced riding skills who like racing occasionally can get one for Rs 110,000. Also, for those who have an existing bike with good parts, are looking for selective components, or progression in riding style can opt for just the frame (Rs 25,000) for the liberty to the build the way they wish.
Currently, Psynyde Bikes’ new Furan retails from brick and mortar stores in Pune (Lifecycle), Mumbai (Bharat Cycle, Mascot Bikes), Bangalore (Cadence90), Shillong (Procycling), Jaipur (Bicycling Paradise) and Delhi (RR Cycles) with more dealers to be added to the list soon.
The team aren’t stepping on the brakes though. Sudeep says, “We are working on expanding to the overseas market and our first stop will be Australia where we expect to start retailing by this year end. We are also working on some very interesting projects, some of which will target world records.”
It’s all a bit hush hush, but if it’s anything like the Furan, we can expect to be blown.
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