Festka Shows Some Lug w/ Sweet Full Custom Carbon Frame Deals

first_imgWe first saw Festka, a custom handmade bicycle brand out of the Czech Republic, at NAHBS this year and were impressed with the details, tubing selection and overall light weights.They showed frames using normal carbon molding, carbon tubes with alloy lugs, stainless steel and our favorite, a carbon-kevlar honeycomb tubed road bike.Now, Festka is looking to add carbon lugged bikes to their stable. To do it right, they want to get the tooling to make a wide range of carbon lug angles for each frame size, letting them offer a wider range of custom sizing. More than 50 pieces are needed. To help finance the tooling and other equipment, they’re following the crowd funding model, but without the assistance of Kickstarter or Indiegogo.The offer is simple: Buy a voucher for the frame in advance and you’ll get a full custom bike of your choice (road, mountain, fixie, commuter, whatever) for a heck of a deal. That includes custom color selection and a titanium bottom bracket and Cane Creek 110 headset, too. The campaign’s called Projekt 200, and only 200 vouchers will be sold at a price of $1,300 (€1,000) each. Normal price for these frames will be $3,600 (€2,750). As of this post, only 135 are left.More pics of the Projekt 200 frame, and some of their other bikes, below… Standard frame weights will be around 1,000g, but they say they can get them as light as 700g depending on customer wishes. Headtube is straight 1.5″.The lugged construction allows any tube to be replaced in the event of an accident, meaning your bike isn’t just a disposable piece of composites. That, and they provide a 110 year warranty against defects. Delivery for the new model runs between March and June, 2013.OTHER BIKESThe Royal Flush uses aluminum lugs and carbon fiber tubes.Pascal hardtail mountain bike. Pick your wheel size: 26″, 27.5″ or 29er.The Numbers uses the carbon-kevlar hybrid tubes for an exceptionally stiff bike. Check out cutaway tube photos here.The Bezovka fixed/single speed urban bike.THE PRESS RELEASE:Progressive young Czech brand Festka Bicycles, which designs and hand-manufactures tailored bicycles and accessories, is presenting a unique opportunity and a great tip for a Christmas gift for all bikers: a chance to buy a hi-tech carbon frame for the fraction of its value within the Project 200 limited edition. By purchasing a voucher worth 25,000 CZK (1000 EUR, 1300 USD) at http://projekt200.festka.com/en, you will get a hi-tech carbon frame worth 69,000 CZK (2750 EUR, 3600 USD) with a titanium bottom Cane Creek 110 bracket and headset, the type of frame of your choice (road, MTB – 26″, 27,5″, 29″, cyclo-X, track, fixie, fitness or city bike) and tailored size, as well as an opportunity to build a bicycle for a unique price, including anatomic measurement, seating position adjustment using the Retül system, customization and colour options and consultation during the whole process of building the bike.“By purchasing the frame, the customer participates on the production of forms for carbon couplings at the same time. It is a form of community financing, inspired by schemes such as the Kickstarter in the United States. To manufacture one type of a bike in one size, you need three forms. To make our offer as wide as possible, we need more than 50 such forms. The Project 200 was launched to collect financial resources to acquire the forms for the couplings,” says Michael Moure?ek, one of two founders and partners of Festka Bicycles, adding: “We opted for a luxury voucher which you can give as a Christmas present or wrap with a ribbon. The recipient of the gift will receive exactly the frame he or she wished, and will have a chance to choose type, colour and size. In addition to the frame, he or she will receive a number of other services, as well as a 20% discount on other components.”FRAME DESCRIPTIONAfter two years of development, Festka Bicycles presents an ultimate carbon frame. Carbon couplings are used to connect tubes, which allows for tailor-made construction. The carbon tubes are a result of cooperation with CompoTech, a company which focuses on advanced solutions from sports to robotics. Using carefully-selected composition of high-strength fibres, the new tubes set new standards in strength and absorption of vibrations, further advancing our revolutionary sandwich tube solution. In the event of damage, the frame allows substituting any damaged tube for another. The head tube was remodeled to a new 1,5” size (upper and bottom bearing). This solution considerably adds strength in the front of the frame and improves fork fit. Every professional biker will confirm that a high-quality headset is of key importance, and that is why Festka opted for currently the best solution on the market – Cane Creek 110 52mm. Guarantee for 110 years speaks for everything. Since this is a top-level frame, the bottom bracket can only be made of titanium. There are, of course, no stickers on the bike and the design is created by airbrush and premium varnish from PPG, a world-renowned supplier. The weight of the frame is about 1000 grams or even less, depending on type. (We can make 700g frames, but weight has impact on function at this level. Limitation and potential complications are not worth the several grams you save on the frame weight.) The total weight of a road bike thus gets below 6 kg.…AND ONE MORE PRETTY BIKElast_img read more

Read More »

A Meet-Cute of Professional Networking and Online Dating

first_imgThe New York Times:Work and romance may seem like a bad combination, but as more work, and more romance, goes online, the two are meeting in interesting ways. LinkedUp is one startup banking on a version of the old saw that you’re likely to meet your mate at work, while eHarmony, a veteran of online dating, has decided to deploy its expertise to match job seekers with potential employers.“Elevated Careers by eHarmony,” scheduled to start in December, seeks to improve a company’s employee retention rates by looking at more than skills and resumes — companies would be more productive, and more profitable, if their workers were more satisfied and stayed at the company longer. Taking into account an applicant’s personality, how it might fit with the company’s cultureand how it might mesh with management, may help to improve both factors.…But even with eHarmony’s 600,000 married couples, there’s still plenty of skepticism about whether online dating sites work. OkCupid conducted an unannounced test recently that manipulated users’ profiles and found that what you write on your profile doesn’t have any bearing on whether another user finds you attractive.And Eli J. Finkel and Susan Sprecher, professors of psychology and of anthropology and sociology, respectively, write in Scientific American that the claims of matching sites don’t bear out in real life:“From a scientific perspective, there are two problems with matching sites’ claims. The first is that those very sites that tout their scientific bona fides have failed to provide a shred of evidence that would convince anybody with scientific training. The second is that the weight of the scientific evidence suggests that the principles underlying current mathematical matching algorithms — similarity and complementarity — cannot achieve any notable level of success in fostering long-term romantic compatibility.”Mr. Finkel and Ms. Sprecher are part of a team that wrote a longer psychology paper, summarized on Science of Us, arguing this in greater depth. What a person might find attractive on a profile may have no correlation to what they find attractive in real life, the report says, and browsing profiles “fosters judgmental, assessment-oriented evaluations and can cognitively overwhelm users, two processes that can ultimately undermine romantic outcomes.” What improves outcomes most is access to a wider pool of potentially interested (and interesting) people to connect with.Read the whole story: The New York Times More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

Read More »

Study finds women, older people more likely to embrace distancing

first_imgWith more than 36 million people diagnosed as having COVID-19 worldwide to date, physical distancing remains one of the most effective ways to prevent COVID-19 spread until the widespread distribution of effective vaccines, and two new studies demonstrate who is most likely to embrace the measure—most notably women, older people, and conscientious types.Individual compliance with government-issued recommendations for physical distancing and other restrictions varies widely, and policymakers are eager to identify strategies for future public health campaigns that encourage greater adherence. The two PLOS One studies examined compliance with COVID-19 restrictions, highlighting psychological motivations, barriers, and personality traits that affect individual decisions to abide by restrictions.Facilitators, barriers to distancingA survey of 2,013 adults (84% female) in North America and Europe examined rates of psychological motivations—factors that serve as facilitators or barriers—for physical (also called social) distancing compliance and rates of adherence among participants.Disseminated through social media from Mar 29 to Apr 16—the period of strict distancing regulations in North America and much of Europe—the online convenience survey queried respondents about factors that made it more or less likely for individuals to engage in physical distancing.Participants selected statements from a list of 55 phrases reflecting motivations related to distancing adherence, such as, “I want to avoid spreading the virus to others.” Statements included both internal factors, such as feeling a personal responsibility to protect the community, as well as external factors such as the ability to work remotely. Participants were also provided with a list of behaviors consistent with physical distancing recommendations and asked to rate each behavior on a frequency scale from 1 (never) to 4 (always).The researchers found that strong facilitators of physical distancing behavior included the closure of restaurants (endorsed by 95% of respondents) and community centers/recreational facilities (94%), followed by a desire to protect others (86%), self-protection (84%), responsibility for community protection (84%), and the ability to work remotely (51%).Top barriers to physical distancing included seeing many people on the streets in the respondent’s area of residence (31% endorsed), implementation of distancing policies in the workplace (26.3%), having friends or family who needed help running errands (25%), an inability to work remotely (16%), feeling stressed when alone (13%), and a lack of trust in government pandemic messages (12.7%). Of note, barriers reflecting misconceptions or conspiracy beliefs were endorsed by only 1% to 3% of respondents.While the study authors did not find perfect adherence for any of the distancing behaviors, avoiding crowded places showed the highest compliance, with 90.6% of respondents reporting that they always adhered. Adherence was also high for avoiding non-essential travel (90.5%); restaurants, bars, and coffee shops (88.8%); and non-essential gatherings (88.7%).Adherence to physical distancing behaviors varied by gender, with women twice as likely as men to avoid socializing in person (odds ratio [OR], 2.02; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.45 to 2.82) and 1.5 times as likely to maintain a safe distance in public (OR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.11 to 2.03). Age was also a factor in compliance, with people 45 and older more than twice as likely to demonstrate social distancing compliance compared with younger respondents (OR, 2.27; 95% CI, 1.43 to 3.59 for ages 45 to 64; OR, 2.55; 95% CI, 1.32 to 4.95 for ages 65 and older).The study authors advocate for future health communications targeting men and younger individuals with messages focusing on self-protection and protection of the community as strong motivators that are associated with higher adherence.”In line with our findings that wanting to protect self, others, and the community were the strongest motivators associated with higher adherence to social distancing recommendations, it is important that these compassionate-focused and pro-social attitudes are kept at the center of future public health campaigns about social distancing,” the authors added.The study findings support research published earlier this week that showed women are more likely not only to embrace physical distancing but hand hygiene, mask wearing, and other preventive steps, as well.Personality and complianceThe second PLOS One study examined the association between personality and compliance with public health recommendations, finding certain personality traits related to higher compliance with guidelines. The study also highlights the potential to increase compliance with COVID-19 transmission mitigation guidelines by developing government messaging tailored to specific personality traits.The study sampled 8,549 Japanese citizens from 20 to 64 years of age from Mar 26 to Mar 28 in an effort to investigate whether five major personality traits—conscientiousness, agreeableness, openness to experience, extraversion (being outgoing), and emotional stability—are related to compliance with transmission mitigation behavioral guidelines.Respondents completed the Ten Item Personality Inventory to identify major personality traits and then were asked to rate their adherence to 21 pandemic mitigation behavioral guidelines on a five-point scale from 1 (very true) to 5 (not at all true).After controlling for gender, annual household income, education, marital status, and source of pandemic-related information, the study authors found that, of the five personality traits, extraversion negatively influences the tendency of people to comply with COVID-19 transmission mitigation behavioral guidelines. People rated high in conscientiousness were 31% more likely to adopt behavioral guidelines, followed by openness to experience and agreeableness (19% and 17% more likely, respectively), with emotional stability showing no positive or negative effect.The authors cite previous studies of human behavior that showed greater success when persuasion messages are targeted to individuals’ unique psychological characteristics. They say governments should tailor messaging to different personality traits to encourage compliance with public health guidelines.The authors also suggest that initiatives designed to trigger certain personality traits may improve compliance, pointing to evidence that messages of belonging and obligation have been shown to help develop conscientiousness.”We believe that this research not only supports prior work in highlighting the importance of pro-social messages, but also the importance of knowing the specific personality traits that may make individuals less likely to comply with COVID-19 transmission mitigation behavioral guidelines,” the study authors noted.last_img read more

Read More »

Barwood Capital reaps rewards of a hands-on approach

first_imgJoanna Greenslade says Barwood have a hands-on approach in the MidlandsBarwood Capital has a strong focus on development, which has helped bolster the returns it has delivered for investors. The first fund delivered returns of 12% a year over five years, the second 15% and the third is also on track to deliver returns of almost 16%.The firm prides itself on taking a hands-on approach. Greenslade says: “It’s easy for a fund manager sitting in London to have quite large portfolios where they don’t have the time, instinct or understanding to go out and speak to their current or prospective tenants in person, whereas we do build and maintain those relationships. That’s one of our fortes – a more personal approach.”Although the firm does some development work in-house, when operating outside the Midlands, it typically works with other developers and even in the Midlands, it is happy to back others on the right deal. For example, it is funding a 100,000 sq ft warehouse that has been speculatively developed by First Panattoni.“It’s a great example of an institution dropping the ball after the Brexit vote. An institution had it under offer with First Industrial [now First Panattoni] but got cold feet and we picked up the funding position,” says Brogden.Industrial focusThe Birmingham deal was completed on behalf of Barwood Capital’s third fund, which had a strong focus on industrial, something that is set to continue with the new fund. If anything, the weighting to industrial will be even higher for the latest fund.Greenslade says she feels confident about the rental growth outlook for the industrial market but would be surprised to see further yield compression.Resi-only fundAnother area of increased focus for the firm is the residential market, where it works exclusively with third-party developers. Currently, it is working with six developers to build around 200 homes with a gross development value of about £80m. That is likely to increase significantly in the years to come if plans to launch a residential-only fund come to fruition.“Our next step is to do a resi-only fund,” says Greenslade. “There are a lot of development managers that are missing an equity slice who approach us directly or who are referred to us through Close Brothers who we bank with. We have a great pipeline of resi opportunities.”“Our next step is to do a resi-only fund – we have a great pipeline of resi opportunities”Joanna Greenslade Book your place for RESI Convention 2018 to join the debate on opportunities within the resi sector Dynamic duo: Guy Brogden and Joanna Greenslade of Barwood CapitalFor a real estate fund manager that is focused on the regions, she argues that this gives it an advantage over London-based managers.“Our base is firmly in the Midlands and that’s one thing we pride ourselves on,” says Greenslade. “You need to spend time in London, but the real USP of our business is deal-sourcing. And for that and to manage assets effectively, you need to be on the ground.”Until recently, Barwood Capital shared offices with db symmetry, the logistics developer created in 2015 as a joint venture between Barwood Developments Limited (BDL) and Delancey.Make sure your views are heard in 2018’s logistics censusBarwood Capital itself was founded in 2009 by the directors of BDL, which effectively acted as the development manager for the firm until db symmetry was created. Since then, Barwood Capital has become more agnostic about who it works with and now teams up with a wide range of developers on projects as well as using its own in-house team.It has also grown significantly in that time. Last year, the business moved a mile down the road into new offices, which are almost double the size of the old one. “We were bursting at the seams,” says Greenslade.The new offices will be a launch pad for Barwood Capital to further accelerate its growth. Over the past year, the company has already made its intentions clear by making a string of key appointments.Last summer, it installed former Mayfair Capital chief executive Guy Brogden, who was already on the board as a non-executive director, in the newly created role of executive chairman. It then strengthened its investment team by hiring PropSki founder William Chambers from JLL as investment director and earlier this year, Hugh Elrington, who was head of UK transactions at Rockspring, joined as a board member and head of property.Broadened investor baseElrington’s arrival coincided with another milestone for the firm. At the same time, it closed its fourth fund raising £76m of equity – with leverage, the five-year fund will have the firepower to invest about £150m. Since the launch of the first fund in 2009, which was backed by high-net-worth individuals in the Northampton area, Barwood Capital’s funds have increased in size and the investor base has also broadened.“In the new fund, we have a lot of new investors, Merseyside Pension Fund for example, and a large number of high net worths who see this as a unique opportunity to get into property development,” says Greenslade.center_img Barwood is converting Riverside House in Northampton into student accommodationAnother sector that Barwood Capital is planning to focus on more is alternatives. At the end of last year, it secured outline planning permission for 400 units of nursing or student accommodation at Riverside House in Northampton, which is located next to a hospital and a new university campus, and is on the lookout for other similar opportunities.At the same time as the firm looks to increase its investment across industrial, residential and alternatives, it is planning to selectively invest in the office sector. Greenslade says that office occupational requirements are not “as forthcoming” as they were before the Brexit vote but that there are still good investment opportunities to pursue.However, despite her concerns about Brexit, Greenslade is still upbeat about the outlook for real estate, citing the large gap between property yields and bond yields. She also believes that the firm’s focus on parts of the market that are underpinned by “structural change” will serve it well as it looks to accelerate its growth.last_img read more

Read More »

National Welders to become wholly owned subsidiary

first_imgGet instant access to must-read content today!To access hundreds of features, subscribe today! At a time when the world is forced to go digital more than ever before just to stay connected, discover the in-depth content our subscribers receive every month by subscribing to gasworld.Don’t just stay connected, stay at the forefront – join gasworld and become a subscriber to access all of our must-read content online from just $270. Subscribelast_img

Read More »

Linde nitrogen liquefier on-stream

first_imgSubscribe Get instant access to must-read content today!To access hundreds of features, subscribe today! At a time when the world is forced to go digital more than ever before just to stay connected, discover the in-depth content our subscribers receive every month by subscribing to gasworld.Don’t just stay connected, stay at the forefront – join gasworld and become a subscriber to access all of our must-read content online from just $270.last_img

Read More »

Prisoners have talent

first_imgSingers Lungu Tubu and Asanda Makhaba were among the 21 finalists in the UR Slam Factor Talent Search. Lunga Tuba landed behind bars after breaking into a house, but last week at a Pollsmoor Prison talent search, he was breaking into song. About 400 guests attended the UR Slam Factor Inmate Talent Search, featuring 21 different performances, at the prison’s recreational hall on Friday April 21. The competition is the brainchild of Shirley Paulse, of the Tokai-based NGO Women in Action, and is part of a rehabilitation programme for Pollsmoor prisoners.In December last year, Pollsmoor area commissioner Clifford Mketshane described how Ms Paulse had helped with the renovation of Block B of the women’s prison, freeing up 270 beds and doing repairs. “A lot of people don’t like that we are helping prisoners, but the way I see it is one less murder, one less break-in. A lot of people in here want to change their lives,” said Ms Paulse.She received 1 200 applications for the talent search, including dancers, singers, poets and actors. One of them was Tuba, 26, who broke into song with his big voice reminiscent of Luciano Pavarotti.Having grown up in Hermanus he came to the big city in search of a career in classical music and ended up homeless and singing a cappella for coins in Sea Point.One cold winter night, he had not made enough to cover the cost of a bed in a hostel and broke into a house. He has now been in Pollsmoor for seven months and has two more years left on his sentence. “In here, I’ve met people who’ve helped me further with my singing. I’d like to continue doing what I’m good at when I get out and see where it takes me. I would need help to make a success,” he said.Asanda Makhaba, 25, from Durban was convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced in 2014 to 12 years, most of it spent in Johannesburg Prison. From supporting her mother and two brothers, growing up singing opera, gospel and singing in choirs in Guguletu and Nyanga, temptation got the better of her after meeting a wealthy businesswoman. Wanting what she had, she flew to Brazil to become a drug mule. “In prison, I’ve learnt to be content with what I have, which is more than some people who have nothing. Love of money, greed, took away the little I had,” she said. For the competition, Makhaba sang Amazulu by Amanda Black.Mr Mketshane says the competition has been a great success so far. “It’s a platform to showcase what offenders can do, to display their inner hidden talents and also to uncover what they never knew they had. To show society that people can change,” he said.He spoke of young woman serving an eight-year sentence for murder. “She wrote a heartbreaking poem, a confession, titled What Made Me Who I Am, of how she was abused and got into Satanism.“Offenders are victims; I cannot deny that they have done wrong things in society. But if you scratch down a bit, you will realise there is no one in this world who is more dangerous than a victim.” To hear Lunga Tubu singing O Sole Mio, visit www.iol.co.za/athlonenews/last_img read more

Read More »

MPs urge government to preserve access to European legal services market

first_imgPreserving access to the single market in legal services is among the reasons why the government urgently needs to set out a vision for trade with the EU following Brexit, MPs say today. In its first report, the International Trade Committee of the House of Commons backs re-joining the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) to preserve continuity in trading relationships. The report cites evidence from the Law Society on the legal services sector. The Society told the committee that while the EU single market in services is still ‘a work in progress’, in legal services a single market is already a reality.Mickael Laurans, the Society’s head of international policy and engagement, told the committee that the continuation of the participation of the UK legal services sector in the two EU lawyers’ directives and the mutual recognition of qualifications directive was a ‘key ask’.Leaving the single market would render the UK vulnerable to restrictions on legal practice that vary among member states. Some EU jurisdictions operate nationality requirements, Laurans noted, while right of audience before EU courts could be lost by UK lawyers. There might also be problems regarding clients’ ability to benefit from legal professional privilege.The committee says the government must act quickly to bolster confidence and put the UK in the best position to forge new trading relationships after 2019.Among its recommendations is for the government to publish a white paper about the possibility of the UK re-joining the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).EFTA, whose current members are Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, has free trade agreements covering 38 countries, which the UK might stand to benefit from if it were to re-join. According to the report, the committee ‘was impressed by the potential benefits of EFTA membership, given the close alignment between the UK’s economy and those of EFTA members, although the government has not proposed this as an option’.last_img read more

Read More »

AG’s office pays men £25,000 more than women

first_imgThe attorney general’s office is one of Whitehall’s worst offenders in terms of gender pay parity, according to research by the Guardian newspaper. Women civil servants at Jeremy Wright QC’s department are paid an average of £36,250 while men get £61,240, according to analysis of data from the Office for National Statistics.The AGO has relatively few staff (about 40) and therefore small movements can skew the statistics, the research acknowledges. Yet the gap has widened by 18 points in the last decade, to 41%.A spokesperson for the office said: ’In a very small organisation like AGO, minor changes in staffing can lead to significant changes in percentages so we do not believe too much can be read into these statistics. We are strongly committed to diversity: our two most senior members of staff are women and over half of the Executive Board are women.”The AGO has recently appointed a diversity champion and said it has policies in place to encourage female applicants for roles and to ensure equal treatment of candidates.The average gender pay gap across all government departments and agencies is 13% (with men earning an average of £28,280 and women £24,680). The Ministry of Justice doing slightly ‘better’ at 11% (excluding agencies).Since 2008 the pay gap has widened at 23 of 97 government departments or bodies. These include the Supreme Court (14% wider).A Cabinet Office spokesperson quoted by the paper said: ’The most recent ONS report shows that overall, the civil service gender pay gap has narrowed, but in small organisations it is very sensitive to minor changes in staffing. The pay gap is affected by differences in seniority, profession and regional distribution of staff, which can be very different across departments and are not controlled for in the raw data.’In autumn this year we will be launching our new diversity and inclusion strategy, which outlines plans to achieve our aim of becoming the most inclusive employer in the UK by 2020. The strategy will set out how we will continue to improve the gender balance of the civil service at all levels.’last_img read more

Read More »