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For The Love of Steel !

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For The Love of Steel !

Old 05-12-10, 08:18 AM
  #1  
Fixie Flyer
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For The Love of Steel !

Let's face it, the once dominating material of choice almost seems to be scarce these days.
However, there may be a big resurgence on the way. Almost every major and not so major bike companies put out a steel frame fixie or touring bike. It won't be long before we see multi-speed road bikes again ! Jamis, seems to be the pack leader so far with a full line of chromoly road bikes, plus a line of fixed gear single speeds and two touring bikes. Hats off to Jamis, at least someone is taking notice, and I bet they are the current No#1 seller of the road dampening steel ! Not even the once king of Cro-Mo, Bianchi makes a steel framed bike ! The people are getting tired of the cookie-cutter carbon bikes that you need to re-mortgage your house just to have one ! Yes I admit steel bikes today are more expensive than ever, but they are still cheaper than carbon or aluminum. With the resurgence of chromoly fixies I believe {I Hope} we will see chromoly road and sport touring bikes soon!
Nothing, nothing, rides like steel. The snap, smoothness, shock dampening, and duability are barre none ! Schwinn and Raleigh need to step up to the plate and create the eon of steel rivalry once again. Bianchi needs to get back to where they once belong, and 4130 needs to be on more affordable road and sport tourers once again. If the demand is there, the supply will be met. It's only a matter of time until steel re-claims it's throne !
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Old 05-12-10, 08:27 AM
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andrew carnegie?
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Old 05-12-10, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Fixie Flyer View Post
Let's face it, the once dominating material of choice almost seems to be scarce these days.
However, there may be a big resurgence on the way. Almost every major and not so major bike companies put out a steel frame fixie or touring bike. It won't be long before we see multi-speed road bikes again ! Jamis, seems to be the pack leader so far with a full line of chromoly road bikes, plus a line of fixed gear single speeds and two touring bikes. Hats off to Jamis, at least someone is taking notice, and I bet they are the current No#1 seller of the road dampening steel ! Not even the once king of Cro-Mo, Bianchi makes a steel framed bike ! The people are getting tired of the cookie-cutter carbon bikes that you need to re-mortgage your house just to have one ! Yes I admit steel bikes today are more expensive than ever, but they are still cheaper than carbon or aluminum. With the resurgence of chromoly fixies I believe {I Hope} we will see chromoly road and sport touring bikes soon!
Nothing, nothing, rides like steel. The snap, smoothness, shock dampening, and duability are barre none ! Schwinn and Raleigh need to step up to the plate and create the eon of steel rivalry once again. Bianchi needs to get back to where they once belong, and 4130 needs to be on more affordable road and sport tourers once again. If the demand is there, the supply will be met. It's only a matter of time until steel re-claims it's throne !
The nice thing about Jamis is they never quit making a fairly extensive line of steel framed bikes. Yeah, they make aluminum and carbon bikes, and have for years; but they never quit making several steel framed models.

Last edited by well biked; 05-12-10 at 10:55 AM.
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Old 05-12-10, 08:39 AM
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Well Biked, that was well said ! I'll be giving Jamis some money for a new Satellite or Quest in a few months ! LOL
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Old 05-12-10, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Fixie Flyer View Post
Not even the once king of Cro-Mo, Bianchi makes a steel framed bike !

Bianchi needs to get back to where they once belong...!
The 2010 Bianchi Gran Fondo line are all Chromly framed bikes. They range from $949 and up.

https://www.bianchiusa.com/bikes/gran-fondo/
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Old 05-12-10, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by cb400bill View Post
The 2010 Bianchi Gran Fondo line are all Chromly framed bikes. They range from $949 and up.

https://www.bianchiusa.com/bikes/gran-fondo/
Nice, but man, $5k for an Athena-equipped bike?
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Old 05-12-10, 11:13 AM
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I have a 2001 Jamis Nova as my most modern bike. It is set up with cross tires so that I can ride the bike trail near me. Of my 4 bikes it gets the most use because it is so versatile , and the Reynolds 631 rides nice. My hat is off to Jamis too.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:24 AM
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Kona Kapu, Dedaciai Steel tubes, chrome lugs, Ultegra/FSA components

Kona has also been in the new steel game-- this is mine and i LUV it
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Old 05-12-10, 11:31 AM
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There are plenty of makers out there. I ride a Some Double Cross DC with an IRD Tange fork. Soma, Salsa, and Pake all make great steel frames.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:42 AM
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Steel isn't dead, it's just gone boutique. All the smaller makers are still using it.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:52 AM
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I think Specialized came out with a steel road bike for 2010 to.

As the post above states: "Steel isn't dead, it's just gone boutique. "

I myself would get something lugged and custom if I was to go new. There are plenty of great independant builders using steel and lugs these days, and you could get away with paying about the same amount as an off the shelf too. The inly thing that has kept me from taking the plunge is the wait time is usually a couple of years or more.

And let's not forget everyones favorite: Rivendell
uh oh, I went there ha ha
I personally love Rivendells stuff.
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Old 05-12-10, 11:56 AM
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I love Rivendell and VO threads. Thaks for bringing it up again. Now sit back and enjoy!!.....lol
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Old 05-12-10, 11:58 AM
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Wait time for a Mercian is only 4-6 months.......
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Old 05-12-10, 12:03 PM
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or just buy old bikes and update them with integrated shifters ...
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Old 05-12-10, 12:17 PM
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true, but it's not at the top of my list of what I would want if I was to go custom.
edit..I was referring to the Mercian suggestion.

edit again. I'm a big fan of the Portland scene. Aherne, Vanilla, Hufnagel..etc.

Last edited by cobrabyte; 05-12-10 at 12:26 PM.
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Old 05-12-10, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by nikkorod View Post
I love Rivendell and VO threads. Thaks for bringing it up again. Now sit back and enjoy!!.....lol
I was making a tounge-in cheek joke after all. I wasn't trying to troll, honestly.
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Old 05-12-10, 12:22 PM
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Personally, I think Trek is missing a trick by not re-releasing the 660.
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Old 05-12-10, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
or just buy old bikes and update them with integrated shifters ...
sure, but on the subject of custom and steel...what's custom about an old frame vs. a new one built to spec for YOU?

jeez another edit lol

...also, you could buy an old bike and not support the people trying to keep it alive today...or you could contribute to the continuance of producing steel frames in the future so we all don't have to fight over the "old" ones on ebay and craigslist.

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Old 05-12-10, 01:17 PM
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Funny thing is, Al seems to be turning out to be the "poor cousin" of materials used on frames in the future? It's been a long time since I read of any super glowing reviews on aluminum frames, classic or new. Now that steel is becoming the cool, rediscovered material for bicyclists, could Al further fall into oblivion?? I also noticed that classic Al frames aren't getting that much respect from many CVer anymore, many now describing them as possible "death" frames or forks.
Even CF is not so new to everyone anymore and it seems like so many tricks have been done with it already and the techno addicts are getting much harder to impress with the latest CF frames. I'm wondering what the next future wonder material would be for bicycles.
I think the resurgence of steel is mostly caused by it's long proven, and understood characteristics and the rumors of CF frames "exploding" all over the place helps quite a bit plus as I noted, Al seems to be getting boring to many as you can even find the material on department store bikes these days. Only real negative that people can still bring up with steel is possible rusting, but then there are now products that you can shoot and pour into the frames that this is not really an issue anymore.......plus many just love the looks of lugs on a bike.
Now they better not start building steel frames in the new "tail dragger", "Compact" configuration, because I think that will just be too ugleh!

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Old 05-12-10, 06:35 PM
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A new bike would have to have two characteristics besides steel construction for me to take a serious look at it:
  1. horizontal top tube
  2. curved fork
Not that I rule out titanium, but I doubt I'll see that at my price point.
Other funky modern style devices that I could do without are components that can be changed, so they wouldn't be deal breakers:
  1. compound bent drop bars
  2. brifters (ok, not a style device, but they're ugly)
  3. angled stem extension (horizontal looks "right" to me and allows lower bar height)
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Old 05-12-10, 07:34 PM
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Steel lugged frames are just a good idea that isn't going away any time soon. NAHBS was sure proof of that.
They work. People like them. People are willing to pay for them. Basic stuff, but it still surprises me once in a while.

I recently listed an Ironman for sale. The buyer was in SC, I'm in NC. His dad, a Trek 2.1 owner, came by to look at it for him, though he "wasn't into steel bikes"......or so he thought...(evil laugh)....
We walked around the garage. We rode out into the area. We came back. He made calls. We negotiated, but not much. (I try to be fair.)
He left with the bike. He wants one in his size.

Another guy came by for a fitting, to see what he wants. He wanted "aluminum with a carbon fork, or maybe even all carbon." He looked. We rode. "Steel will do."

After reviewing his budget, "maybe I'll get two." ...(evil laugh)....

World domination, one bike at a time. Or maybe I need to raise my asking price.
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Old 05-12-10, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Chombi View Post
I'm wondering what the next future wonder material would be for bicycles.
Chombi
Ti? Carbon Nano Tubes?
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Old 05-12-10, 07:38 PM
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Steel.
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Old 05-12-10, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by cobrabyte View Post
true, but it's not at the top of my list of what I would want if I was to go custom.
edit..I was referring to the Mercian suggestion.

edit again. I'm a big fan of the Portland scene. Aherne, Vanilla, Hufnagel..etc.
Interesting. I'd take a custom Mercian every day of the week. Guess I like the more traditional build. Different strokes.... Good thing. That way, you and I won't be competing for the same bikes on CL!
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Old 05-12-10, 08:16 PM
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Well, you guys have about convinced me...or rather, the bikes you've made be buy and restore have convinced me...or rather, the ride of the bikes I've gladly bought and restored has convinced me.

In all seriousness I thoroughly enjoying riding the Tiara. It's taken me a bit to find out that I needed a larger frame size in a classic bike due to the difference in the position of the brifters I have on the CAAD9 compared to regular brake levers and where they end up on the bars. Now that I have the right size frame and got the right anatomic bars for me I find I have five distinct and equally comfortable positions to ride in. Add to that the smoothness of the steel...man...it's like a renaissance. I'm finally getting the bike fully dialed in, the RX100 group shifts so crisply and the brakes are SO much better than single pivot. I even managed to find the same Sakae anatomic bar on the internetz with cable grooves (yay!) so that's in route and once installed I'll be calling the Tiara "done".

I digress...but I completely agree, I now love my steel.

Next up, a rain/commuting bike...
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