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  1. #1
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    Steel, endurance, not boat anchor, etc - does it exist?

    A steel, endurance bike that is not a boat anchor with 105 (or better) groupset with the potential to use 700x28c tires with fenders. Does it exist? Or is this something that needs to be custom?

    Curious to know what people have done when going in this direction. If the full package is not there, what would be the ideal mass production frame to start with?

  2. #2
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Have a look at the Your Century Bicycle sticky at the top of the page ...
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...tury-bicycle(s)

    It should give you some idea what people are using to ride long distances.


    Also, look for sport-touring or audax bicycles. My Marinoni Ciclo is a sport-touring bicycle, Columbus steel tubing, and very light.

  3. #3
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    Salsa Vaya? not a boat anchor, but not as light as say a 531 frame, or maybe a Cinelli Hobo. Plenty much choice out there, if you only requirements are 28mm tires, fenders and 105 level groupset, should be easy to find a bike that has that as a minimum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    Also, look for sport-touring or audax bicycles. My Marinoni Ciclo is a sport-touring bicycle, Columbus steel tubing, and very light.
    Nice options for Marinoni. There's a dealer close by and I plan to follow up with them.

    Quote Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
    Salsa Vaya? not a boat anchor, but not as light as say a 531 frame, or maybe a Cinelli Hobo. Plenty much choice out there, if you only requirements are 28mm tires, fenders and 105 level groupset, should be easy to find a bike that has that as a minimum.
    Any other big-name options that come to mind aside from Salsa and Cinelli. No dealers close by.


    Thanks!!!

  5. #5
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Rivendell, Waterford, Gunnar, Seven ... you might also check Thorn ...

  6. #6
    Commuter & cyclotourist brianogilvie's Avatar
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    Another possibility is the Boulder Brevet from Boulder Bicycles. You'd have to order one, but if you know your sizing, the process is painless. I ordered a lugged All Road last fall, built it up in the winter and spring, and started riding it this summer. I'm pleased as punch with it.
    Public accountability: my Beeminder weight loss graph.

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    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    Surly and soma both make sports touring frames. Soma has a number of models. Both Surly and Soma make steel cross bikes with eyelets that would work well. If you want something lighter but not too crazy expensive, get a gunnar frame with a fork of your choice. If you want to save some money doing this, find a vintage frame that takes long reach side pulls. I built up a long-distance bike for my daughter by finding a 1983 trek 600 for $175 and then rebuilding the bike. If you want something new and inexpensive, bikes direct has the fantom cxx (reynolds frame, sram apex parts) for $800. Heck I'm trying to figure out a reason why I need this bike so far with no success.

  8. #8
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    What's your budget?

    And what weight is acceptable?

    FWIW I don't see any reason to be dogmatic about frame material. Compared to my 80s steel road bike, my recent aluminum bike has around the same vertical compliance, a little more zip (stiffness), weighs around 20 pounds, and cost around $1250.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    What's your budget?
    $2.5K or less, which I think should be plenty for a non-custom option.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    And what weight is acceptable?
    Maybe 22lbs with fenders? Not sure how reasonable this is with steel, maybe more reasonable with alum or carbon?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    FWIW I don't see any reason to be dogmatic about frame material. Compared to my 80s steel road bike, my recent aluminum bike has around the same vertical compliance, a little more zip (stiffness), weighs around 20 pounds, and cost around $1250.
    Not dogmatic at all. The alum options that I've explored are mostly cross bikes with relatively high bottom brackets. And I'm not looking for such a geometry.

  10. #10
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    I like steel, and my Marinoni is steel, but titanium is very nice too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Machka View Post
    I like steel, and my Marinoni is steel, but titanium is very nice too.
    Not sure how the Marinoni offerings have changed over the years. Is you Marinoni based on the Sportivo geometry or the Turismo geometry? Just curious.
    http://www.marinoni.qc.ca/Html/Sportivo.html
    http://www.marinoni.qc.ca/Html/Turismo.html

  12. #12
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Mine is a Ciclo.

    I think Ciclos became Sportivos a few years ago. Mine is custom and heavily customised.

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    Quote Originally Posted by starjag View Post
    $2.5K or less, which I think should be plenty for a non-custom option.
    Maybe 22lbs with fenders? Not sure how reasonable this is with steel, maybe more reasonable with alum or carbon?
    Not dogmatic at all. The alum options that I've explored are mostly cross bikes with relatively high bottom brackets. And I'm not looking for such a geometry.
    http://www.sjscycles.com/thornpdf/Thorn_Audax_Mk3.pdf

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    Last edited by lungimsam; 08-18-13 at 12:08 PM.

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    Last year, I bought a Genesis Equilibrium frame and built it up with ultegra components. The frame is Reynolds 725. The fork is carbon, though. Weighs in under 9kg (20lbs) with pedals and water bottle cages. It takes 700x28 tires with fenders (700x32 without fenders).

    The standard build (with 105 components) is here: http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/...equilibrium-20

  16. #16
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    With a $2500 budget, I'd take a look at Gunnar Sport, http://gunnarbikes.com/site/bikes/sport/. It takes 700 by 32c tires and fenders. I just built up a salsa casseroll frame (no longer made) because I wanted a steel frame bike that would take 700 by 28c tires.

  17. #17
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by starjag View Post
    $2.5K or less, which I think should be plenty for a non-custom option.
    Jamis Quest supposedly weighs 20 pounds, and list price $1800.

    For that price, I'd also test-ride some CF or aluminum endurance bikes, as they are specifically designed to increase comfort without incurring a performance penalty. Specialized Secteur and Cannondale Synapse come to mind.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    For that price, I'd also test-ride some CF or aluminum endurance bikes, as they are specifically designed to increase comfort without incurring a performance penalty. Specialized Secteur and Cannondale Synapse come to mind.
    Yes, did consider these alternatives. Fenders and 28c tires appear to be an issue.

  19. #19
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by starjag View Post
    Yes, did consider these alternatives. Fenders and 28c tires appear to be an issue.
    Doh, missed that part. Yeah, you're in trouble.

    I guess you could look at gravel bikes. They're basically cross bikes with a slightly more road-like geometry and a few other tweaks. However, there aren't a lot of models out, and I'm pretty sure they all come with disc brakes.

    You could also just pick a light-weight cross bike that has a more road-like geometry. You might have to nerd out on geometry specs though.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    You could also just pick a light-weight cross bike that has a more road-like geometry. You might have to nerd out on geometry specs though.
    You mean like a Gunnar Crosshairs? It's essentially an old-school road bike with cantis and mondo clearances. Curiously enough, at least in the bigger sizes, the steering geometry is more upright than the Sport. If I were still riding uprights, I'd probably still have mine.

    SP
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  21. #21
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rando_couche View Post
    You mean like a Gunnar Crosshairs?
    I guess, though I'm not sure if the Gunnar meets his weight requirement.

    I expect that like most of the non-custom mass-market steel rando options, the frameset will push the 6-pound limit. In comparison, an aluminum cross frameset will be around 3.5 lbs; carbon will be around 2.7 lbs. (The only CF rando frame I know of is the Calfee Adventurer, which is way out of his price range.)

    The key question is why the OP is ruling out cross bikes, and whether his concerns can be otherwise fixed. E.g. A lot of the racier cross bikes will have road-like geometries, and you can always swap out the cantis for mini-v's.

  22. #22
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    If you can stretch your budget just a bit, consider the Volagi Viaje.
    Rick T
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    Volagi - Triple"ized" and Tubeless
    daVinci Joint Venture

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    The key question is why the OP is ruling out cross bikes, and whether his concerns can be otherwise fixed. E.g. A lot of the racier cross bikes will have road-like geometries, and you can always swap out the cantis for mini-v's.
    I've taken this route already. Most of the options that I've seen have relatively high bottom brackets. That's why I'm looking elsewhere.

    Quote Originally Posted by rdtompki View Post
    If you can stretch your budget just a bit, consider the Volagi Viaje.
    Funky looking bike. Do we have reviews/reports from BF endurance riders?

  24. #24
    Senior Member bikemig's Avatar
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    I like steel bikes but it it may not be the best choice if funds are limited and weight matters. I figure that if the bike is made right, the weight is what it needs to be but I know a lot of people feel very differently about weight. In any case, I have no idea what my bikes weigh.

    Still I wouldn't think it would be that hard to build up a gunnar (or other lightweight steel frame) and come in under 22 lbs. I've seen builds online of claimed weight under 20 lbs on these such as this, http://dirtroadwashtenaw.com/2011/11...ar-crosshairs/.

    It may be tough doing a lightweight build (I think the OP wants at shimano 105 parts are better) at $2500. I also think that the soma es is a pretty good choice and since it costs less than a gunnar, the OP will have more available funds for the build.
    Last edited by bikemig; 08-19-13 at 07:21 AM.

  25. #25
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    I have a Gunnar Crosshairs built up as an endurance bike that weighs in at 20 pounds -with cages, no fenders or racks. I built up with Ultegra and the waterford steel fork, which is a pig. I'm sure I could swap out for a carbon fork, add fenders and still stay under 20. The bike is-is has no carbon other than the brake levers. Seatpost and bars are aluminum; Time ATAC mountain pedals. Oh yeah, size 50cm, so I wouldn't get your hopes up at weighing in at under 20 pounds if you're going to order a 68cm (yeah, they have that size). The bottom bracket drop is a full 70mm - only 5mm less than the Sport, Gunnar's Audax bike, and the same BB drop as the Roadie.

    Gunnar.jpg

    edit: Just checked and the bike comes out to 24.4 fully equipped: Lights, rack, fenders, saddle bag, pump, computer, bottle cages, and empty bottles.
    Last edited by aggiegrads; 08-19-13 at 08:07 AM.

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