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Show stopper: Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes

One off paint job points to US brand's heritage

Check out this Cannondale CAAD12 road bike in a one-off Star-Spangled-tastic paint job.

We’ve out visiting a couple of UK bike trade shows this week, and this is one of the most eye-catching bikes we’ve spotted so far. Some of you might have seen it at the Rouleur Classic before Christmas.

Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes - head tube.jpg

As you might well know, the CAAD12 is an aluminium framed bike that was first revealed last summer, an evolution of the super-popular CAAD10. 

Cannondale says that it’s lighter, stiffer and more compliant than the CAAD10. Naturally. Bikes are always lighter, stiffer and more compliant than their predecessors, that’s cycling law!

Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes - stem.jpg

Check out our previous story to get more details on the CAAD12. 

What’s really interesting here, though, is the paint job. It’s the work of Alistair McLean at Fat Creations based in West Sussex

Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes - fork.jpg

The silver sections – the Cannondale name on the down tube and the stars on the top tube, for example – are actually the aluminium frame showing through. They’ve been masked while the paint has been added to the frame. 

Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes - seatstays.jpg

Then the paint has been rubbed down so that it’s very thin before the next colour is added. This means that frame is smooth, with no discernible difference in feel between the painted and the unpainted areas. It's an incredibly time-consuming process. 

Cannondale CAAD12 Stars and Stripes - chainstays.jpg

The built up bike as seen here (without pedals) weighs a claimed 6.8kg (15lb).

If you wanted one like this, you’d need to give Fat Creations a shout.

Cannondale has done Stars and Stripes paint jobs before. Here's the Slice belonging to US national time trial champ Andrew Talansky.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

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