Bean Can Top Tube Armor

Ever have a buddy destroy a fancy carbon frame in a crash for something as silly as the handlebars smashing the top tube. It’s an epidemic. Fuck that.

For the past few years I’ve been struggling with fit on my mountain bikes. Even with my own designed bikes, I know where I want the grips to end up but as this is so low, it puts the top tube in jeopardy of being smashed as the front end spins in a crash. This is a big problem for aggressive riders that will crash at least once each ride. Our choice is to ride in a poor position or risk destroying a bike. For too long I sided with protection of the frame. No more.

In the past year  I’ve become much more fanatical about exactly how I want my bike to be set up regardless of the consequences. The payback has been great on rides and I’ve been lucky and haven’t crushed anything to date. Recently, as I’ve been setting up a new bike (post up on Monday) I decided to address the problem. It worked out well.

I’m now armoring my top tubes to protect them in crashes. I recommend that all riders do something like this to their bikes, especially folks with carbon frames. It may not be 100% effective, but it will certainly minimize a considerable amount of damage. Sweet.

* Get a steel food can with corrugation from the recycle bin.


* Rough cut material from the can.



* Locate where the armor needs to be added.


* Double wrap (two layers) an area with pvc tape.


* Size the material and break the corners. Carefully bend the piece to flow with the shape of the frame tube.



* Wrap another couple of layers of pvc tape over the corrugated steel tightly to hold it in place and protect the rider from it and make it look great.


* The finished product. It looks trick, it’s low profile, and adds a shield and cushion for the tube.