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Thread: Steel or Ti?

  1. #1
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    Steel or Ti?

    Hi, please can anyone help me with my present dilemma. I recently sold my Specialized Hard Rock with the intention of buying a low end Titanium frame and building it up from scratch. However I recently came across a high end Miyata mountain bike with a beautiful blue and white lugged steel frame and is nearly unscratched and unused (despite being nearly as old as I am). My neighbor is willing to sell this bike (wheels, retro Rockshox, XTR and all) for about the same price as a new Titanium frame and fork would cost, it seems a little overpriced to me and I might be able to barter it down a bit, but I am sorely tempted to just fork over the cash and forgo the Titanium dreambike and get a classic steel lugged one instead. The steel Mtn bike frames seem to have become somewhat of a rarity and a novelty also, how do they measure up to the more modern affordable Ti frames?


    Thanks for your help, malachi.

  2. #2
    Cascadian Nationalist
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    I like old bikes a lot, but you are not even looking at two similar products here. If you want a new bike, get a new bike. Everything about that Miyata will feel dated. Also, yes, terribly overpriced.

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    Svr
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    A new Ti frame, even like the low end chinese made ones on ebay, will probably last you the rest of your life and will be compatable with modern gear like 100mm travel suspension forks and disc brakes. Miyata stopped selling bikes in the US around 1994 I think. Anything that old is difficult to upgrade and finding replacement parts for the drivetrain and suspension fork get more difficult year after year.

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    BAM! theextremist04's Avatar
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    As well, ti doesn't rust, which is certainly worth something assuming you actually ride your mountain bike.

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    Hands down go for TI

    TI has an amazing ride. I personally have never seen "low end ti" so I would be highly skeptical of the quality, since it truly takes and artisan to weld a decent ti frame. Especially since some scary stories about the motobecane ti bicycles that are advertised on "Bikesdirect".

    Check out www.lynskey.com. He is the former maker of litespeed and really knows his ****.

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    <3s bikes Re-Cycle's Avatar
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    Fixedmonkey can you share these scary stories,
    A wild man once explained to me how bicycles came from sailboats.

  7. #7
    Te mortuo heres tibi sim? scrublover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashen View Post
    I like old bikes a lot, but you are not even looking at two similar products here. If you want a new bike, get a new bike. Everything about that Miyata will feel dated. Also, yes, terribly overpriced.
    ^^^what he said.

    ti is great. steel is great. you can get low end ti or high end steel in roughly similar price points. or you can get lower or medium level steel frames for very good deals (and there are a ton of steel frames out there - just got to shop - they often get overlooked) yeah, ti won't rust and has that going for it. you can also get a crappy ti or steel bike. ti breaks - i've broken a ti hardtail, and have seen a few others.

    pick your budget, then look at bike company websites to see who has something you want in that price range with the geometry you want.

    IMO, if on a budget, you're going to get a better bang for your buck with steel. it all depends on what kind of riding you want to do as well.
    I believe the clouds in my coffee more than the weatherman on t.v.

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    How do steel frames compare in terms of feel with alu or carbon? I keep hearing amazing things about the ride quality. Also, how does weight compare?

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    Hi, thanks for the input everyone. I am going to take the Miyata out for a spin tomorrow, I was ready to hand over the cash if it fits me and rides well, but I am feeling more conflicted now that I've read the overwhelming praises and recommendations for Titanium. The owner is asking $450, he says he originally bought it for over twice that much (and in early 90's dollars). I'm thinking I can modify it a little and make it a “worldclass steel beast” of a mountainbike if upgrade the cranks to a more modern, durable outboard bearing design and get new pedals (I don't think the cleat is still made for the ones it's currently equipped with).


    I guess I'm still weighing my options. Thank you everyone for helping to make my decision even more difficult (just kidding).

  10. #10
    Svr
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    Quote Originally Posted by malachi View Post
    The owner is asking $450, he says he originally bought it for over twice that much (and in early 90's dollars).

    That's still pretty steep. An Apple II computer may have cost over $2500 in 1977 dollars, but that dosen't make it worth even 1/10th of that today.

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    Don't buy the Miyata that's a horrible deal. You could do sooo much better for that price. Also, you're not using the word "barter" correctly. Unless you mean lowering the price by trading him things...

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    Get the ti motobecane

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    Why not Aluminum? For what you are looking to spend, you could probably get a dope AL frame.

  14. #14
    I have senior moments... bikinfool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by theextremist04 View Post
    As well, ti doesn't rust, which is certainly worth something assuming you actually ride your mountain bike.
    Either does aluminum. Rust is not a big deal unless the interior hasn't been properly prepped.
    Ti is nice, but it isn't magic and isn't even special if made by the wrong guy...
    suum quique
    Mountain bikes: Santa Cruz Hecklers (99, 02, 07), Santa Cruz Nomad, Moots YBB, Trek OCLV Pro Issue, American Breezer
    Road bikes: TST, Trek 2300 (Carbon/Alum)

  15. #15
    foolishly delirious RatedZeroHero's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikinfool View Post
    Either does aluminum. Rust is only called "rust" because that is the color of ferrous oxidation, Aluminum doesn't rust but it oxidizes all to easy... Oxidizing AL is white...
    .
    I may be new to the cycling world but I do know a little about metal, Ti is the way to go...

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