Orbea Orca M20I 53cm
Road bikes are probably the most highly-refined cycling machines you can find. So it’s impressive that Orbea found room to dramatically improve their Orca OMR. The frame is 20% lighter (250g lighter than the previous), 24% stiffer, more comfortable, and rides better. It’s also 150g lighter than the OMP version.
Orbea started by refining their production methods. The frame utilizes OMR, Orbea Monocoque Race, carbon, but how they set up the material for the mold has changed. They’ve stopped using bladders and started using EPS foam. Better, more consistent compaction, for a stiffer bike, and less weight, as the frame no longer has the bladders inside. They then optimized their lay-up, working to move materials around and shifting shapes so there’s more material and bigger shapes where you need stiffness, and less where you don’t. They also reduced the number of aluminum inserts necessary for the frame, another weight reduction tactic.
Orbea also switched the Orca to a dramatically tapered 1 1/8” to 1 1/2” steerer for added steering precision with no weight increase. They moved to a BB86 bottom bracket shell so not only could the bottom bracket weigh less, but the area around it could be lighter and stiffer. They moved to a round 27.2mm seat post for a lighter clamp and post as well as for greater comfort.
Knowing the value of aerodynamics, they shaped the head tube, fork, and down tube to minimize what the wind sees, giving you a speed boost with no cost in weight or stiffness.
All these changes result in the bike being 62% more efficient than the old Orca. By this, they mean that the bike goes faster for the same effort, as manifested by the improvements in aerodynamics, rigidity, and weight.
They also refined their sizing. The Orca comes in seven sizes, and there’s a linear progression in stack and reach measurements from the smallest to the largest. It’s easier than ever to fit on an Orca.
The ride, oh baby, that’s what is most exciting. The greater stiffness at the front end translates into better sprinting and standing climbing, the stiffness at the BB yields more power to the wheel, and the reduced materials and shapes at the seat post provide better comfort. Wins all around. Team Cofidis can ride 27mm tubulars in these bikes when they’re facing cobbled classics, so you’ve got some tire flexibility as well.
In terms of setup, the frameset comes with an FSA headset, a seat collar, front derailleur hanger, and sets of both cable stops and grommets so you can decide for yourself whether you want to run mechanical or electronic shifting internally or externally. If you choose to go the electronic route, the battery can be mounted externally under the left chain stay or internally-internal folks are limited to Shimano Di2. And there are magnet mounting spots for a SRM, Quarq, or Pioneer crank-based power meter.
The Orbea Orca Race Frameset is more of everything good in a bike.
- FRAME Orbea Orca carbon OMR. monocoque.tapered 1-1/8´´ - 1.5´´. PF 86mm. powermeter compatible. internal cable routing. EC/DC compatible. 130mm rear spacing. 27.2mm seat tube.
- FORK Orca OMR carbon fork. full carbon steerer. tapered 1-1/8´´ - 1.5´´. carbon dropouts.
- CRANKSET FSA Gossamer Pro 34x50t
- HEADSET FSA 1-1/8´´ - 1-1/2´´ Integrated Carbon Cup Light Bearings
- HANDLEBAR FSA Energy Compact
- STEM FSA Energy
- SHIFTERS Shimano Ultegra 6870 Di2
- BRAKES Shimano Ultegra 6800
- CASSETTE Shimano Ultegra 6800 11-28t 11-Speed
- REAR DERAILLEUR Shimano Ultegra 6870 Di2
- FRONT DERAILLEUR Shimano Ultegra 6870 Di2
- CHAIN Fsa Team Issue
- WHEELS Vision Trimax 30 Clincher Red-White decal
- TYRES Kenda Kountach 700x25 120TPI
- PEDALS N/A
- SEATPOST FSA SL-K Di2 SB20 27.2x350mm
- SADDLE Selle Italia SLR Team Edition
- HANDLEBAR PLUGS Black Anti-Slippery/Shock Proof Bar Tape