I often walk into our office and think I’m in a bike shop instead. With 15 prototype Valours, there are always tires rolling around, bikes being taken apart and put back together, and other tech in development I haven’t had the opportunity to learn about just yet. The team is always looking for new (and really cool) ways to improve the cycling experience. As most of you have already seen, we’ve been riding and testing the pilot production run of 15 bikes and the ride is amazing! The Valour is an extremely smooth ride, and as Alex, our Marketing Manager puts it, “eats road bumps for breakfast”.

Back in July, we hit a delay with our handlebars. The waterproofing standards we aimed for were not met, meaning that there was potential risk of water damage from rain. We promised a level of IP4, but the handlebars were passing at a level of IP2. An IP2 rating is only effective against vertically dripping water when the enclosure is tilted at an angle of up to 15 degrees from its normal position. Meanwhile, an IP4 rating means the ability to withstand splashing against the enclosure from any direction.

Prototype Handlebar

Production Handlebar

As a commuter bike, you should have peace of mind knowing your Valour is safe against ANY ride condition. As the majority of the Valour’s tech is housed in the handlebars, we knew the importance of ensuring a completely waterproof product.The exact solution is a matter of fine-tuning. You may have noticed in the photos that the prototype handlebar has been produced with sharp/defined edges around enclosure points, while the production handlebars have rounded and less defined edges. The rounded edges can potentially cause gaps/voids to form in the silicon/rubber seals used for waterproofing – a gap as small as 0.1mm can allow for water to seep through.

We took the old handlebars offline and Dave, our Industrial Designer, took a trip to China successfully finding working solutions for waterproofing together with our supplier (a Plan B and Plan C too, just in case). We’ve set a new ship date for October and are now working on tightening up tolerances.

It’s been a wild month! We did our best to contact each and every one of our backers and customers to let them know of the delay as soon as we discovered the problem. The continued support and patience we’ve received has been overwhelming! We’re so grateful, and we’re so excited to see your Valour on the road!