Interview with OG Marton Szilagyi

     Interview with OG Marton Szilagyi

We have been quite amazed by OGs new prototypes, especially the Dadan. Furthermore considering the debate about this one on various flatland forums, we wanted to do more than showing pics of the frame in the news. So we thought that an interview with Mr OG bikes, OG Marton (who designed all the parts) would be interesting and could bring answers to riders who ask themselves questions or are still unconvinced by this new concept.
Many people compare the Dadan with some road bike
or some old school moongoose design, have you been directly inspired by this kind of bikes or did you just imagine the Dadan while searching a more effective design for a flatland frame?

About a year ago I drew many "stupid" looking flatland frames. I was wondering how I could design a frame that can give even more space to the riders. One of them was the Dadan, but I wasn´t really interested in it. In the beginning of this year I was talking about my ideas to Peter Sarlos, Adam Kun and Zoltan Barta (Zoltan runs the website). I explained my idea about a frame (it was the Dadan but without a name back then), and the guys were stoked on the huge spaces and pushed me to start working on the real design. I told them that the geometry looks like a cheap MTB frame, and perhaps people
would hate it. But the guys gave me motivation to work on it, and advised me to not pay attention to what people would think about the looks. It is all about the function and the idea, plus the stiffness of the frame at the same time. After the Worlds many people came to us and said that they were stoked on the frame design, and the Dadan could give them the opportunity to practice tricks that they just could never do on a regular frame.

Most of the riders who dislike the Dadan say that it wouldn´t be strong enough, in a general way, what can you tell to people who don´t believe in its strength?

Before the production we are going to test all the frames, and change them if necessary. The OG Bike Company never sold weak products, we are always taking care of the highest possible quality. (Just look at the OG Griptapegs and our older frames, no one had a bad experience with them) You just cannot compare this frame to a weak mountain bike or an old racing frame made of crappy tubing. We use the best manufacturer of the industry, so we would like to let everybody know that the frames will be of a really high quality and good durability. For the prototypes I intentionally chose thinner main tube than the ones that we are going to use for the production line frames. The reason why I did that is that I´d like to see the cracks and the weak points of the frame as soon as possible. The cracks show the weak points of a thin-walled frame, so you can adjust the stronger wall thicknesses. It´s important for the final version, and it has to be available soon for the riders. We do not have time for like 5
different prototypes. I think the final weight will be between 2.35 and 2.4 kgs (5.17 - 5.28lbs). For the production line we´ll use a special Sanko main tube, a single butted one with thicker wall at the critical points.

How long have you been working on this design? Can you tell us how many prototypes did you made before the final version?

The complete frame design took me about a week. Usually we only need to order prototypes only once since we try to use the perfect wall thicknesses and materials. After testing we know what to change if necessary. Maybe for the Dadan production we´ll need one more prototype, but I´m not sure about that. As for the built up bikes, We really love them. It took a while until we got used to the looks, but could ride them really well at the first time of testing. Especially Adam was freaking out. He really loved the first occasions of riding the Dadan, and likes it ever since.

Why a 74.5° head tube angle? Did you chose it after various tests on angles or because of the actual evolution toward "chopper frames" in flatland?

In the past most of the frames featured 74.5° head angle, and some of them were even more "choppers". For whiplashes, g-strings, and pinkies they´re very useful. For fast switches when you whip the frame around it´s also very good. For example when you do whiplashes, your rear wheel´s space is bigger between the ground and your tire´s bottom point. It means you have more balancing possibilities without touching the ground with your tire. In the early 90´s I learned g-strings and whiplashes with a Homeless Soul Bro frame, and I loved that one. That bike was a real chopper, I can´t remember the exact head angle. Anyway, you will feel the difference.

Why an optionnal Spanish b.b. on the Dadan? Do you think it is the upcoming standart?

I´m not really happy about the upcoming standards, especially when I hear many problems about the internal headsets. If the bearings are not 100% parallel inside your headtube, then your bar won´t turn around smoothly and/or will be loose at some points. I still like the EU BB and the regular headtube, they won´t bring too many troubles. Spanish and internal must be available if riders like it, but I´m not really into them!

Many riders wonder why OG dropouts are shaped differently as other frames can you explain the reasons of this design?

Our slots on the dropouts are always parallel with the ground, if you change the rear wheel´s position it won´t effect your headtube angle. We also care about the necessary space for the pegs, trying to save power on the axle.

Are the Dadan and GypoII tests over? If yes, do you already know when the new OG products will be realeased?

We need a little more time for the final results, and think that the new products will be available within the next 2-3 months. The Gypo2 is a perfectframe, I do not think we need to change anything on that one. So are the handlebars, they feel so nice.

Can you already tell us what will be the price of the new OG products?

The frames will be between 250-299 Euro, the Caramel bar (in two sizes: 7.36" and 6.5") will cost around 90 Euro.

Thanks for the interview and the photos Marton

12th of June 2005 - Ilan Giguel / Marton Szilagyi