"When Robert and I started at "Tour", hardly ten engineers were working in the German bicycle sector. Today, there are some bicycle companies with ten engineers in their team", says Dirk Zedler, bicycle expert and a freak by self-evaluation. Since 1994 Zedler has been writing articles for "Tour". Together with Robert Kühnen, another engineer, he has left his mark on the testing and technology department of the magazine and therefore contributed significantly to the development described by him. (…)
FROM THE EXPERT'S REPORT TO COMPARABILITY
(…) Although Dirk Zedler comes from a rather car loving family, he has decided that the bicycle will be his work and life content, written his mechanical engineering thesis about disc wheel covers made of carbon and finished his job in the cycle shop as bicycle expert. This job opened his eyes to the dark sides of the constructive eagerness to experiment and the underestimating negligence of these days. As he is the expert before a court, when bicycles and components fail with consequences, commissioned to assess an event of loss. The tragical accident stories are inclusive.
(…) In the years to come, Zedler would make the bicycle better with the effectiveness of an engineer. After a short intermezzo at Velo, he would write for "Tour" which in these days is not yet focused solely on road racing bikes. His articles (and those influenced by his work) deal with collapsing suspension forks – "Attention risk of breakage!" – failing seat posts – "ejection seat?" – and with dangerous mudguard holders at the front wheel resulting in the worst case in a wheel blocking which makes the cyclist get down over the handlebars: "Danger mudguards". These evocative headlines and the following warning texts may appear as scaremongering to some readers who identify themselves with their bicycles as cult object and the brand. On reflection, however, they actually reveal real sources of danger and take the bicycle seriously which must primarily be measured against the criteria of vehicle construction.
Author: Gerolf Meyer