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-   -   Breezer Venturi (http://www.bikeforums.net/road-cycling/873669-breezer-venturi.html)

CanAmSteve 03-04-14 12:00 PM

I've a number of steel bikes which is why this frame interested me. I have old Peugeot and Bianchi frames, plus a number of hand-built English frames, one made in South Africa from "Gilco" fluted steel and the odd classic Raleigh. Everything from Reynolds 501, 531, 631, Columbus Cro-Mor, Thron and SL... For current bikes, I've Surly Pacer (4130) and the rare Felt F4130 (Campy 11 spd) and a Lemond Zurich. So I guess I'm a steel man :-)

CanAmSteve 03-04-14 12:04 PM

That does look tight at the fork! I think some 25mm tires would just fit, though. I've ordered 23mms for now though. Thanks - very helpful.

EddNog 03-04-14 08:45 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by CanAmSteve (Post 16547614)
That does look tight at the fork! I think some 25mm tires would just fit, though. I've ordered 23mms for now though. Thanks - very helpful.

Here are pics of the clearance on mine with Bontrager R3 TLR in 700x23:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367199

If you'd like, later this week, I can try mounting my girlfriend's front wheel on my bike. I set her up with Hutchinson Sector 28 on Ultegra tubeless wheels. I think they will fit, but extremely tight.

-Ed

CanAmSteve 03-05-14 01:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EddNog (Post 16549033)
Here are pics of the clearance on mine with Bontrager R3 TLR in 700x23:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367199

If you'd like, later this week, I can try mounting my girlfriend's front wheel on my bike. I set her up with Hutchinson Sector 28 on Ultegra tubeless wheels. I think they will fit, but extremely tight.

-Ed

I'd appreciate it if you get the chance. I'm amazed how tight the Breezer fork is. I think I can probably squeeze 25s in there, but I have a Trex Madone 4.5 with "fat" tubeless Hutchinson 25mm tires on it, and I can fit my entire index finger on either side of the fork blades. I'd say the Trek would easily run 28mm tires. The Surly Pacer, OTOH - actually labeled as a "fat tire bike" can't run 32mm Michelin World Tours - they are too tall and scrape the brake stay. Which is frustrating as there is plenty of room everywhere else and the position of the brake stay is relatively unimportant (just use brakes with more drop). Surly apparently changed the geometry recently to fix that issue. Thanks for the pix.

chaadster 03-05-14 02:23 PM

With the Michelin Pro Optimum 25s, there is maybe a business card worth of clearance to the sides, so I guess it works.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7296/1...1eed3585_b.jpg

CanAmSteve 03-06-14 03:51 AM

Wow again - not much clearance there. I'll post some pix og my fork when it arrives but I assume they are all the same. I would say that's 10mm less side clearance than my Trek carbon fork. Thanks!

chaadster 03-06-14 06:40 AM

Yeah, well the Venturi is a pure race bike, and I think a lot of people expect that, just because it's steel, that it's going to be more relaxed and flexible in some ways. That's totally incorrect, and this is one of the most extreme bikes on the market in terms of geometry. Additionally, when these 'Act 2' bikes launched (distinguishing between the original Venturi in the '90's), they brought pioneering construction techniques that allowed for qualities never before had in a production road frame. It feels different from most steel frames in that it's stiffer and more responsive, but also because it feels unified and consistent front to rear.

I'm not implying this is true for you, only that I've run into this before. People hear "steel" and they pull out their box of prejudice right away. Couple that with the fact this is not a particularly expensive frame (msrp is $1k, IIRC) and made in Taiwan, and is a brand most closely associated with city bikes, and you've got a situation where most people have no idea of what they're looking at or what to expect.

EddNog 03-06-14 10:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chaadster (Post 16553183)
Yeah, well the Venturi is a pure race bike, and I think a lot of people expect that, just because it's steel, that it's going to be more relaxed and flexible in some ways. That's totally incorrect, and this is one of the most extreme bikes on the market in terms of geometry. Additionally, when these 'Act 2' bikes launched (distinguishing between the original Venturi in the '90's), they brought pioneering construction techniques that allowed for qualities never before had in a production road frame. It feels different from most steel frames in that it's stiffer and more responsive, but also because it feels unified and consistent front to rear.

I'm not implying this is true for you, only that I've run into this before. People hear "steel" and they pull out their box of prejudice right away. Couple that with the fact this is not a particularly expensive frame (msrp is $1k, IIRC) and made in Taiwan, and is a brand most closely associated with city bikes, and you've got a situation where most people have no idea of what they're looking at or what to expect.

Hear here! I myself am now experimenting with RedShift's Switch Aero seat post and a set of aero bars, so I am able to ride in road position as well as get low and aero for long, straight flats (of which we have a lot of here in South Jersey). I think people are often surprised to see an alloy frame with such a low/short headtube, although the original factory geometry has a very steep stem, whereas I am only using a 5-degree stem.

-Ed

zymphad 03-06-14 10:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rpenmanparker (Post 16546801)
Another thought. Are you sure you have your saddle positioned correctly? With a normal set back post, so much post showing, and the saddle cranked more than half way back on the rails, you are really riding far back. Once again, if you didn't need to be that far back behind the bottom bracket, you could have taken a larger frame size and put the length toward the front. That could help with your out-of-the-saddle problem.

I've noticed that more people are fitting their bikes based on where their center of mass is, in front of the BB/Crank, like you described. I tried doing it and prefer it.

I see this Breezer bike on sale a lot at Bikewagon, seems they have trouble getting rid of stock, it's the 2012 model. Always advertising it.

chaadster 03-06-14 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zymphad (Post 16553903)
I've noticed that more people are fitting their bikes based on where their center of mass is, in front of the BB/Crank, like you described. I tried doing it and prefer it.

I see this Breezer bike on sale a lot at Bikewagon, seems they have trouble getting rid of stock, it's the 2012 model. Always advertising it.

I've seen that too, but while the description says 2012, the pictured item is not a '12, but probably a '13. It's easy to tell by the paint; the '12 is what Breezer called their 35th Anniversary paint job.

So I don't know which is right, the words or the pic, but I suspect the pic, since it was correct some time ago, if I remember right, and because I have directly from Breezer (ASI) that only 149 '12 frames went to market. How long could that few possibly last?

EddNog 03-06-14 01:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chaadster (Post 16554280)
I've seen that too, but while the description says 2012, the pictured item is not a '12, but probably a '13. It's easy to tell by the paint; the '12 is what Breezer called their 35th Anniversary paint job.

So I don't know which is right, the words or the pic, but I suspect the pic, since it was correct some time ago, if I remember right, and because I have directly from Breezer (ASI) that only 149 '12 frames went to market. How long could that few possibly last?

Does that make my bike collectible?! It's a 2012 frame (has the gold accents).

-Ed

link0 03-06-14 03:15 PM

I quite like the bike. I would personally replace the white spacers with black though.

gus6464 03-06-14 07:56 PM

Chaad how come yours and Edd's geometry looks so different? The smaller sizes just have a very steep sloping TT?

EddNog 03-06-14 08:08 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by gus6464 (Post 16555730)
Chaad how come yours and Edd's geometry looks so different? The smaller sizes just have a very steep sloping TT?

I wouldn't be surprised if that's the case. With my size frame, I have over an inch of toe overlap with my tiny size 7.5 shoes, and I'm still only using a 90mm stem. I bet they can just barely fit 700c wheels on a frame small enough for me.

Here's my fitment for now with the new seatpost and aero bars.

Road position:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367511

Aero position:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367512

Two setups, one bike, changeable on the fly/while rolling.

-Ed

gus6464 03-06-14 08:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EddNog (Post 16555752)
I wouldn't be surprised if that's the case. With my size frame, I have over an inch of toe overlap with my tiny size 7.5 shoes, and I'm still only using a 90mm stem. I bet they can just barely fit 700c wheels on a frame small enough for me.

Here's my fitment for now with the new seatpost and aero bars.

Road position:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367511

Aero position:
http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=367512

Two setups, one bike, changeable on the fly/while rolling.

-Ed

That's a pretty slick seatpost. So you ride the smallest size Venturi?

EddNog 03-06-14 08:16 PM

1 Attachment(s)
It's the Switch Aero post from Redshift Sports. Can't wait to try it out on the road now that I have the correct shaped extensions to be comfortable.

Yes, this is the smallest size available.

chaadster 03-06-14 08:17 PM

Yeah, I'd say it's pretty typical for any particular frame, in the smaller sizes, to have the head angles slacken and the seat tube steepen, so the geometries are different.

gus6464 03-06-14 08:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chaadster (Post 16555787)
Yeah, I'd say it's pretty typical for any particular frame, in the smaller sizes, to have the head angles slacken and the seat tube steepen, so the geometries are different.

Ahh ok I guess I've just never seen it so drastic that it's easily distinguishable with the naked eye. For example between my 56cm EVO and the 50cm the slope is not so apparent.

thehammerdog 03-07-14 03:29 PM

Cool bike looks great I debated that one a year ago but the Geometry with out having ever seen one scared me. Saw it on sale for around $700. I also love the Road Logic and would get one in a heart beat. Do you like the sizing of it ? Looks unclassic in it's lines but as long as your happy it is a nice bike. Ride it hard.

strayduck 03-15-14 09:40 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I started following this thread right before winning an eBay auction for a 2012 Venturi but wanted to wait until I had it, built it, and rode it before jumping in. I did a quick write-up here: Be Careful What You Wish For (on eBay) but thought I'd post an updated photo and throw in some additional thoughts/experiences.

My main ride is a Merlin Works CR in 6/4 Ti but I just can't bring myself to grind it up in the sand and mess of spring. While I was aiming for an equally rare Specialized Allez Comp in steel (due to having the same geometry as my Merlin) the Breezer presented itself first and I jumped on it.

I had a psychic feeling that after the winter we had here on the east coast that the spring would be messy and so far it's delivered. My first ride was the day after snow, and the second two rides were right after rain showers. I know it's too nice of a bike to be reserved for nature's torture chamber but I think it likes it. :D (and I like being able to go out when my schedule allows weather be damned)

A few notes on the build:
  • Due to the darkness of the frame I purposefully broke the matching-saddle-and-handlebar tape rule. I pumped up the white in front with white brake hoods and a white Barfly Garmin holder and left everything in the back black. The black Ultegra components also help with this color balancing
  • The CRUD fenders work really, really well but if clearance for tires was a concern, you'll be maxed out with these and 23's. Sometimes when you run through a patch of sand you'll hear the grains drag through the fenders before getting spit out
  • I always praise the stainless steel King Cage Iris bottle cages every opportunity I get because they are so great. They have the easy-in shape of modern carbon frames but will never break or skuff your bottles like aluminum cages will
  • The wheels are heavy old crap but appropriate for the use
  • The FSA K-Wing carbon bars are interesting because they are flat on top and look race-aggressive but I could easily flex them with my bare hands, and I'm twiggy like 'Froome. This compliance does make for a very comfortable ride, though, especially on rough roads

Bikes like these are really interesting to me because they attract so much attention and study from other riders but they don't sell that well or wide. I have to admit that being a grown up has taken some of the magic out of buying stuff but I did feel a little childlike giddiness when the box arrived for me to assemble.

chaadster 03-16-14 07:43 AM

Strayduck, what do you think of the ride quality and handling?

EDIT: Those Crud Mk 2s are really nice fenders. I bought a set hoping to fit them to my Lemond, which is rolling on 25s, for the spring rides, but there wasn't enough clearance. I thought about putting them on the Breezer, but as you mention, despite Crud's assertion they work on 25s, I think it's too tight. Anyway, after the winter we've had out here, I want to stick with 25s because the roads are a wreck. Just yesterday, a moment of distraction had me running up on a line of stopping cars from about 22mph, and while I got on the brakes hard, I didn't have enough time to stop before I would have rear-ended one, so I pointed my wobbling front end towards the rubble-strewn bike lane, which was also full of flooded potholes, jumped into and out of a big one, and bounded my way across the rest of the crater field and clear of danger successfully, luckily. I might not have been so lucky on narrower, harder tires. Once I get more rides in and see the condition of my preferred routes, I'm sticking with 25s!

strayduck 03-16-14 08:30 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Caadster: I'm totally with you on the bike feeling unified from front-to-rear. We've got lots of little rolling hills out here where you'll have to stand and mash for 10 or 15 seconds, then settle back into the saddle and the bike responds uniformly at the pressure points (handlebars/fork, pedals, wheels). In a couple of words the I find the bike solid and predictable and it only took a couple of miles of riding it before I stopped thinking about it and got to focus on the terrain and scenery.

One point to make (for my build, anyway) is that I made no attempt to make this bike lightweight and it is not--it's a full 4lbs heaver than my summer ride and while I haven't seen much of a difference in speed on my rides I feel it in the form of a little extra lactic acid on the efforts.

All of this steel makes for a really predictable ride, though, and I really like how it's handled in the wind. We've had some wicked gusts during this moody early spring and the bike tracks steady and true.

I had my other bike professionally fit and I got the stock Breezer parts as close as I could using the measurement sheet I was provided but I still felt like I was reaching a little more for the bars. I lined the two up and while the pedals and seat matched up perfectly, lo and behold the bars are 2.75cm lower on the Breezer, so I'm off to find another stem to make up for that.

It's kind of interesting to see the two bikes side-by-side to compare the "compact" geometry of the Merlin against the Breezer. There are very noticeable differences in the top tubes and head tubes.

http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=369226

There has been some discussion on this thread about the Venturi being a "racing" bike and with some lightweight wheels and part upgrades this could very much be the case but now that I have some miles in I find the choice of a compact crankset an odd one. Unless you live in a really hilly area I find I'm always in the smallest cogs when in the small chainring and over geared when transitioning from the small chainring to the large. If the bike hadn't come with these parts I would do a 39-52 in the front with an 11-27 or 11-28 in the rear.

bikebreak 03-16-14 08:55 PM

This is a very interesting frame...
I have an old steel Bianchi with a nice smooth ride, but heavy. But then my regular bike is carbon and under 18 pounds.

How would you compare the Venturi to a carbon bike in terms of ride characteristics?

catonec 03-16-14 09:20 PM

I personally think tires w/a white stripe would look pretty nice on this bike . Yes they get dirty but a paper towel and some simple green cleans it fairly well.

I think you should replace the white stem w/ a black one to match your seatpost if were talking purely aesthetics.

strayduck 03-17-14 08:30 AM

Hey @bikebreak:

Quote:

How would you compare the Venturi to a carbon bike in terms of ride characteristics?
Considering how much you can weave a carbon frame to attain almost any ride characteristics you want it would be difficult for me to make a blanket statement. Before I bought my Ti bike I did test ride a Specialized Tarmac and a Giant high-end-somethingeranother and I can say that both of the carbon bikes were very light and easy to throw around. I think they would love doing switchbacks whereas the Breezer likes the longer, more gradual high speed descents.

I'm sure the following statement will only apply to the specific model and year of Tarmac that I tested but I felt that even though it was really light and fast off the line that the feeling was kind of "dead" and that the feedback lacked personality. The Ti is also really light and also really stiff but there was a liveliness to it that I really connected with.

I think the Steel is between the two. Hope that makes sense.

@catonec: The whitewalls would be amazing. As for the stem: I like to be careful with my back/white offsets--there is a fine line between sporty and Cheshire Cat. Right now I'm actually looking at bringing the entire seatpost/seat back to white--one of the things that was holding me back was that white zero offset seatposts are hard to get in the states and the other is that the all-white-above-the-seatpost works better with the lighter blue of the 2013 Venturi--the '12's dark blue seems to work better with black.


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