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What is ETB

The Escuela Técnica de la Bicicleta (ETB) is a comprehensive research and training centre focused in all aspects related to the design, building and mechanics of the bicycle.

In the absence of any educational institution where bicycle studies are imparted as if they were an engineering career or technical profession, the ETB aspires to create a basic body of knowledge, techniques and procedures that can be transmitted to the student in an effective and systematised way for its subsequent practical application at the workshop.

The aim is to offer a solid base of knowledge and skills from which students can develop independently in their respective areas of interest both at a professional or personal level.

The courses at the ETB are conceived to cover a wide range of training requirements and follow a modular structure that allow them to be undertaken either individually or combined to create a integrated modular course (MIB). They are aimed to appeal a broad range of students, from the bike enthusiast interested in learning to design and build a one-off custom bike to the person considering to quick-start his/her professional career in bike-design, frame-building or bicycle mechanics.

All courses are taught in reduced groups; all students perform practical exercises individually to ensure that the training received is adapted to the necessities of each of them and meets high-quality standards. The courses are aimed to provide students with the necessary knowledge and resources to continue learning and developing in their area of interest independently after their completion.

Our commitment goes beyond our courses. The ETB also offers its students a series of on-line resources and supervised practices to help them attain their personal goals. We like to follow closely the progress of our students who have already started to take their first steps as frame-builders and bike-mechanics. We also organise different events and activities for sharing knowledge and experiences, thus contributing to create an active community brought together by a common interest and passion for the bicycle.

Finally the ETB is also a centre of research which collaborates with departments at different universities (both domestic and international) towards the goal of achieving a better understanding of the various technical aspects of  bicycle design and frame-building.

Who Are We

The ETB has a permanent staff:

ANDRÉS ARREGUI 

Doctor in Chemistry from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain) in the field of Chemical Physics, area of Molecular Dynamics.

Founder of  Ciclos La Universal and Arregui Velázquez.

With ten years experience as bespoke frame-builder, he has been teaching bike-design and frame-building courses at the ETB and other design schools. He also works regularly for other bicycle brands assisting in the design of prototypes and the production supervision of limited bespoke series.

He works regularly with designers and creative artists in the production of scale model, prototypes and diverse steel structures.

He is an accomplished saxophone player with more than 20 years of practice in free improvisation.

EDUARDO GASCA

MPhil in the History of Political Philosophy from University of London (UK) and BA Degree in the Modern History from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain).

In 2007 he founded Ciclos La Universal starting his professional career in the bike sector where he has developed different functions from customer advise to worksop repairs. He has also imparted different practical courses and talks aimed to bring bike mechanics in an accessible and easy way for all type of users.

Currently he collaborates with different frame-builders for the assembly of bespoke bikes and offers his advise in relation to all mechanical aspects of prototypes and limited productions.

PABLO HERVÁS

Advanced Technician in Mechanical Engineering and 2D & 3D Industrial Design. He has an extensive knowledge in tool materials, metal fabrication processes, ISO testing and quality control of different products.

With over fourteen years of experience in design and development of heavy duty machinery for the extracting industries. Since 2015, after attending a frame-building course at our school, he has dedicated most of his spare time to design and build bespoke bicycles under his own brand  BBloque Bikes.

A hardcore / punk music enthusiast and assiduous live concert-goer. A rucksack always at his side ready for the next adventure.

Teaching Methodology

Our courses offer a balanced combination of theoretical knowledge and practical skills that enables students to make progress independently once their training with us has been successfully concluded.

At the ETB we approach the design, building and assembly of the bicycle in a way in which the student is encouraged to participate actively in the learning process from start to finish. The theory imparted in our courses provide students with the basic concepts which later on will help them to understand the different techniques and procedures that are put into practice during the training at the workshop. In this way, the student acquires an understanding not based exclusively on the repetition of particular action, but rather on the comprehension of the theoretical principles and their practical application along established procedures.

The approach of the ETB to the design, building and bicycle mechanics is firmly based on offering a high level technical training to the student by teaching:

  • a tried-and-tested working methodology
  • different procedures that can be repeated and evaluated objectively.

The bicycle is not an art based only on the experience and skill of each person, but rather a set of theoretical principles and practical procedures which, accordingly, makes possible the development of different tasks and operations in an adequate manner in order to achieve optimal results both in terms of performance and security.

Collaboration and Research with IBERG

The ETB is part of the IBERG (International Bicycle Engineering Research Group), a collaborative network of engineers from different world-wide universities whose aim is to promote the development of the research and the dissemination of advances in the field of engineering and applied technologies to the bicycle.

The materials and components are evolving constantly and, for this reason, it is necessary to modify the methods for the design, building and assembly of the bicycles in the light of these changes like, for example, the development of new materials (new alloys and composites), brazing and welding techniques, new typologies and standards in bike components, as well as advances related to bio-mechanic studies or the certification of the processes and products.

In addition of keeping in regular contact with frame builders and university researchers of different countries, the ETB also organises some events with visiting researchers or frame-builders to explore a particular area or subject of expertise which are open to all current and former students to attend and benefit from.

 At the moment the ETB is involved in the following on-going studies*:

– Differences at fundamental level between different brazing techniques (TIG and Fillet-Brazing) Study of the mono and bimetallic joins.

– Structural differences of welding in the HAZ in relation to filler material and welding temperatures 

– Importance of fillet size and composition in the structural performance of bicycle frames build with different types of steel tubbing.

*all studies sponsored by ISEA, as part of  “Steel Bicycle Project”.

Premises

We are located in the South-East of Madrid city in the popular neighbourhood of Carabanchel, just five minutes away from the tube station of Oporto (Metro Lines 5 & 6). Our premises are divided in two main areas, one ‘clean’ area for imparting theory lessons and doing bike-fitting studies, another larger area for our workshop with different working spots for frame-building and bike mechanics. The workshop is equipped with all the necessary tools for the courses and has also plenty of natural light during the day 

Food: all students can make use of our pantry to prepare or heat their lunch or enjoy a strong expresso from our coffee machine Rancilio Silvia. There are also few restaurants in the area that offer lunch at competitive prices.

Accommodation: If you are not resident in Madrid and require to book an accommodation during your stay, we recommend you to look for a hostel or apartment at the centre of Madrid  (Chamberi, Malasaña, Centro, Chueca, Universidad) so you can enjoy the city in the evenings. We are just 20 minutes aways from the centre by public transport.

If you are interested to learn more about our courses and visit our premises, please give us a call in advance to arrange for an appointment.