Time for a break

The Zedler team - almost complete

The past year was very work-intensive for the entire Zedler team, but also filled with many highlights. We therefore permit ourselves a rest over the Christmas holidays to take breath and to enjoy in retrospect what we have experienced.

In 2018 we were able to set up the newly created capacities at Zedler-Institut to our requirements in view of the ongoing strongly increasing demand and to make use of them very successfully. The official opening of our new company building in summer was a festive highlight which confirmed ourselves in being on the right track. Winning the VSF..ethics prize and the “Grand Prix of Small and Medium Business” award was an extraordinary motivation for the entire Zedler team.

We are finalising the current working year on December 21, 2018 and are looking forward to the new start on January 7, 2018. Due to the fact that we will reduce our capacities over the Christmas holidays, it may be possible that testing services ordered in this period of time will not be started within 48 hours as usually guaranteed.

We express our warm thanks for the confidence you placed in us and the very successful cooperation in 2018. We are expecting the new year with lots of ideas and plans in mind and are looking forward to a continuation of this very good cooperation with you. We wish you and your families Merry Christmas, relaxing holidays and a good start into the New Year.

Your Zedler team

DVM workshop at Zedler-Institut

Audience in seminar area of Zedler-Institut

The 7th workshop of the DVM working group “Bicycle safety” dealt with the topic “cargo bike”. This year for the first time it was a private company that hosted the event. During the two-day event specialist presentations and expert talks about the trends in the industry were held and followed by an outlook for the forthcoming challenges at Zedler-Institut in Ludwigsburg.

Current developments in the cycle industry confront many companies with a radical change that will affect the world of business significantly. Cargo bikes as alternative to cars or utility vans affect urban logistics increasingly and are becoming more and more popular due to a fast-growing online trade and stricter environmental regulations for companies.

Participants in lab of Zedler-Institut

For this reason the German Association for Materials Research and Testing (DVM e.V.) held the workshop “Cargo bikes” of the working group “Bicycle safety” at Zedler-Institut and provided the opportunity to treat the cargo bike issue from the technical point of view. For two days the schedule included various specialist presentations in the fields of e-cargo bikes, cargo bike use, testing technology and vehicle development. “The DVM conference showed the tasks and challenges for the bicycle manufacturers, the infrastructure in the cities and for us as test laboratory”, says Philipp Kipker, M. Sc. at Zedler-Institut.

59 participants from the fields of science, research, industry and service companies attended the event which did not only offer specialist presentations, but also a tour through the energy-efficient building of Zedler-Institut. At the end of the workshop the organiser showed himself absolutely happy. According to Dr. Eric Groß from the Technical University of Hamburg-Harburg, this year’s DVM workshop “Bicycle safety” relating to the topic “cargo bikes” had offered a wide range of fascinating presentations, been subject to an excellent organisation and found a perfect environment with the event location in Ludwigsburg. The participants were also happy, for example Frank Pruewer, Technical Manager of Paul Lange & Co. OHG. According to him the management of the event in this wonderful atmosphere including catering had been outstanding.

The workshop of the working group “Bicycle safety” taking place every other year not only serves the purpose of further education, but is also an interesting meeting point for industry insiders to exchange new ideas.

From left to right:
Catharinus Helfrich (Accell Nederland B.V.) with Dirk Zedler // Lab of the bicycle expert witnesses // Participants along the "Walk of Fail" // Engineers of Zedler-Group

TOUR seat post test

TOUR 12/2018

Europe’s leading road bike magazine TOUR asked Zedler-Institut to test various road bike seat posts for comfort and durability for their December issue. On this occasion the stiffness was determined and two fatigue strength tests were carried out, i.e. one under less load in accordance with the minimum requirements of the ISO standard and a harder one simulating realistically a long, hard seat post life. All in all 27 seat posts of nine different manufacturers, among them four lightweight and five comfort seat posts, were tested on five testing systems (SPF) at the same time twenty-four-seven and over several days.

In this regard Norman Thalheimer, B.Eng. and leading test engineer at Zedler-Institut states: “During or after the realistic fatigue test some seat posts showed defects. This is something we actually do not experience when carrying out such tests for our customers.” Due to the safety risk, three of the tested seat posts were excluded by the magazine. These seat posts stood out in a negative way already during the first test carried out in accordance with the ISO standard or the damage occurred early and with a critical nature of loss during the test based on realistic data. “The fact that seat posts partly do not fulfil the ISO standard in spite of the faithful reproduction of a frame seat tube is unsatisfactory,” states graduate engineer Julius Weimann.

Julius Weimann, Philipp Kipker, Norman Thalheimer (fltr)

He adds: “And the tests usually performed at Zedler-Institut are not exaggerated which is proved by the samples of MCFK, Specialized and Syntace that passed the required 150,000 load cycles and more. MCFK and Syntace passed even more than twice of the load cycles successfully.”

Worth mentioning that the test with mixed test loads adjusted to the permissible weight of the rider was not the only obstacle the seat posts had to master. In contrast to the ISO test the seat posts were preloaded by repeatedly tightening the seat post clamp in a customary carbon frame to the maximum permissible torque value. This is a common scenario because many cyclists dismount and remount the saddle from time to time, for example when they are on holiday.

A seat post is designed to fix the saddle in a permanent and safe way. Besides that further demands can be made relating for example to the seat post weight. “The results should always be considered with regard to the cyclist’s weight, the cyclist’s performance and the riding technique,” states Julius Weimann. The safety problems of some seat posts in particular with the reasonable overload required by the ISO standard are also due to an exaggerated reduction.

Durability and weight are two parameters, the third one is resilience in the case of shocks. The latter one was developed on the testing system “KOM” established in the industry since 2006 and developed by Zedler-Institut. The test results demonstrate the values of the individual seat posts in the fields lightweight construction and comfort.

The test procedure, pictures of the nature of loss and the results are published in the latest TOUR magazine issue (12/2018).