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  1. #1
    fuggitivo solitario echappist's Avatar
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    S&S retrofitting for butted titanium tubes

    Hi everyone,

    I apologize for this long-winded post. I chanced upon a very good deal on a Lynskey Cooper, but am uncertain about whether or not it would be a suitable choice as I have the intention of turning it into a travel bike 2-3 years down the road by installing S&S couplers.

    The people at Lynskey told me that this would not be possible on standard production frames as the S&S couplers require a round shape while the Cooper has ovalized tubes. As such, i would have to go custom in order to get a frame with round tubes, thus missing out on the deal and needing me to add another $1000 on top of the price of a regular Cooper. I was told that the standard production frame with couplers "won't be right."

    The people at Bilenky informed me that they have done retrofittings on Lynskey Coopers with ovalized tubes, but the placement of the couplers would need to move away from the bottom bracket area. Suppose that I get the retrofit done on the ovalized tubes (Bilenky informed me that there are parts of the tube that are more round), what drawbacks would i be looking at? I am primarily concerned about the durability of the resulting frame as well as handling characteristics of the bike (i.e. speed wobbles).

    Thanks for any and all input regarding this.

    Jim

  2. #2
    fuggitivo solitario echappist's Avatar
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    I just have gotten the issue resolved (at least for the next three years). Steve Smilanick, who patented S&S coupling, was very prompt in responding to me. For reference of anyone else who may be interested in a S&S retrofit, here's what he said regarding the ovalized tubes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Smilanick
    Thank you for your inquiry regarding S and S Couplings. Bilenky has done numerous retrofits on tube that are other than round and I haven't heard of a single complaint. Bilenky routinely does work that others say is impossible. He has a great reputation and I can't imagine him doing anything that would tarnish his standing in the cycling community.

  3. #3
    Randomhead
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    I couldn't find any pictures of non-round S&S installs on the Bilenky flickr page. All the retrofits I saw had at least a small section of the tube that was round. If you end up getting this done it would be nice if you would post pictures.

  4. #4
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    I found this Lightspeed Firenza on the S&S website. Bilenky retrofitted it with S&S couplers, and according to the photo caption, "This bike has an ovalized downtube which requires special consideration."
    - Stan

  5. #5
    Huffin' N Puffin
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    I can't comment on the round vs. ovalized as my Litespeed has round tubes, but I will say that Bilenky did an excellent job on the S&S retrofit he did for me. Excellent work, fast turnaround.

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    still it seems as though the real issue could be spending all that money to get a bike that will be optimized for travel, but still not fit in a regulation case. Of course if B. has given you assurances in that regard, but it didn't sound like it. Personally I would step back from the largely unnecessary Ti up charge and get the real bike that is right for you. Or splash out and get it all. But getting buffaloed into a white elephant with a kludgy take down position at great expense just because there is a sale. That's when my inner voice starts yelling "is there an adult in charge here?"

  7. #7
    fuggitivo solitario echappist's Avatar
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    Unterhausen, i'll get the pics up... in 3-4 years as the S&S won't be done for a while.

    Scooper, thanks for the link. I've also found pictures of retrofitted Coopers with S&S. As changing of tube shape makes the bike custom and no longer a Cooper, I think mine would look something like this.

    JoeB, great to hear about your positive experience. I hope mine will be similar. How long was the turnaround?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peterpan1 View Post
    still it seems as though the real issue could be spending all that money to get a bike that will be optimized for travel, but still not fit in a regulation case. Of course if B. has given you assurances in that regard, but it didn't sound like it. Personally I would step back from the largely unnecessary Ti up charge and get the real bike that is right for you. Or splash out and get it all. But getting buffaloed into a white elephant with a kludgy take down position at great expense just because there is a sale. That's when my inner voice starts yelling "is there an adult in charge here?"
    Thanks for the concern, but the frame will be a size small, so it'll fit. I already have a great fitting bike, but i need a bike for when i'm home and when i travel in the future. This will do that for me. I also looked into the Ritchey Breakaway bikes, but decided against them as the bike box is 68 dimensional inches.

    Edit: the lynskeys are actually are CX frames, but i assume the tubes to be similar to the cooper.

    Few more from Lynskeys. If the frame is a production frame, the tubes aren't round.

    Pro Cross


    R340


    Custom
    Last edited by echappist; 01-02-11 at 05:08 PM.

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