2003 Trek 520, 1996 Trek 370, 1996 Bianchi Osprey, too many others.
Surly 4130 or Tange #1
OK, I have a dilemma.
I have a brand new Surly Pacer frame hanging on my wall, ready to be built up. I bought it as a boxed complete bike a few months ago, but decided I didn't like the color So it's just been hanging there while I decide whether to have it re-powder coated or not. I haven't even got around to fitting the star nut.
Just recently a mid 80's lugged steel frame has come up, and being the retro grouch that I am, it has attracted my attention. The original manufacturer's make and model decals are gone, but it is Tange No 1 tubing. I'm guessing it's a Japanese something-or-other. I don't believe its a 70's or early 80's frame because it's built for 700C wheels, not 27" It has a bit of surface rust, and if I buy it I will have it stripped and powder coated. I would sell the Pacer frame.
So, all things being equal, with size, geometry, etc, what would be the better ride - a bike built with Surly's 4130 or a bike built with Tange No 1? We are not talking Tange Prestige here, were talking about the best of Tange's second rung range.
Tange "Champion" tubing *IS* 4130 Chome-moly, just like the Surly. The #1 designation means it is the lightest Champion tube set. Tange "Prestige" tubing was heat-treated Champion #1 tubing, so the frame you're considering would likely be just as light as a similar frame built from Prestige tubing, just slightly lower strength because it wasn't heat-treated.
Looks like you've already made your decision, so I'll back you up on it. I had a Surly. It was a fine bike, but it was really stiff, and I found it unpleasant. That's heavy gauge tubing, regardless of the particular steel used. The Tange #1 bike, OTOH, is light gauge steel and will give a much more pleasant ride, on average. The caveat is that if you are 6'4" and 300 pounds, the Surly is going to be a much better bike for you.