The Oval Tube model
There were just a few of these made as track models in the early 1960's.
This was one of Gerald O' Donovan's fantastic ideas, although they
never capitalised on the fact that aerodynamics were to play a big part
in the future of cycle designs.
The oval/aero tubing track frames were sprinter models built in Reynolds
531 tubing especially made by Reynolds at the request of Gerald.
Several of these framesets survive, still being used by their owners.
The Carbon Fibre model.
In 1971 Carlton showed their latest technology, a carbon fibre bicycle.
It appeard on the Carlton stand at the Cycle and Motorcycle show. Another
Gerald O'Donovan idea.
The National Research Development Corporation supported
the research. A statement from the NRDC mentioned the bicycle which
was described as so light it could easily be picked up with one finger.
The statement went on to say that Carbon fibre reinforced plastic was
twice as stiff as steel, yet weighed only one quarter as much. The cycle
had undergone extensive tests and was soon to go into production.
The Time Trial Special
Announced in 1972. Designed for minimum weight while retaining
rigidity. The most noticable feature was the lack of a seat pin. The
seat tube was extended and the saddle fitted directly to the end. Each
frame was made to fit the rider.
Weight was saved as the extended seat tube was lighter
than the conventional seat pin and lug. All tube joints except the bottom
bracket were welded using a high-tensile material which was again lighter
than that used for a conventional lugless frame.
A larger diameter top tube was used, 1.125 inches instead
of 1 inch. This gave a better welded joint at head and seat cluster.
A thinner guage could also be used on the butted ends.
More weight saved by slots in the bottom bracket, Balilla
centre pull brakes fitted to special bosses and some fancy lace-work
on the chainwheels. All up weight of the 12-speed bike was 18lb 8oz.
They were used by the Carlton Team in the V & G team