Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational)
Reload this Page >

Next new bicycle Steel frame gravel.??

Notices
Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like : "Unbround Gravel". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

Next new bicycle Steel frame gravel.??

Old 06-12-18, 08:57 PM
  #1  
Bicycho415
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 20
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Next new bicycle Steel frame gravel.??

Hello everyone. I'm really torn apart between 3 different Steel Frame Bicycles with Carbon Forks to purchase for my new bicycle/gravel bike. I also might build one up depending how it comes default. I would really like a Sram 1x system, and I will be rolling on mostly roads as I do live in San Francisco and the bay area. I've done a ton of research on these frames/built bicycles and now asking for the communities help before I drop 2 - 3k on a bicycle. They are 1. Cosmic Stallion or Frame by All City Bikes. 2. Niner RLT9 Steel or Frame. 3. Bombtrack Hook 2 or Bombtrack Hook EXT.

These are the bikes in my price range. I'm not sure if I could save money by doing a full build. Stuff add up quickly and it seems you get a better value buying a complete bicycle. Anyway. I really hope this thread blows up and gives me some new solid information to go off.

I've been riding a steel vintage road bike for years with down-tube shifters and am really excited for the change.

Please feel free to ask any questions. I really would like to get into bike exploration and I really like the comfort of gravel bikes in the city because our roads are absolute ****e.
Bicycho415 is offline  
Old 06-13-18, 03:20 PM
  #2  
jp911
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 198

Bikes: Trek Madone 5.2 Dura Ace, Niner RLT9 aluminum, Santa Cruz 5010 CC

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 54 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 20 Posts
I've been riding an (aluminum) RLT9 for 2 years now and I love it. We're neighbors (I live in Oakland) and I've been happy riding this bike on the road and trails, but I do have 2 sets of wheels that allow for easy tire changes depending on what I want to ride that day. I also ride in some of the local gravel races where this bike has been perfect in all respects. Personally, I'm not a fan of 1x on a road bike in a hilly area, but that's more of a strength thing (color me weak...I like the bailout gear on my 46/34 x 11-36 for those long, steep climbs). I would actually have preferred the steel-framed RLT9, but I couldn't pass up the deal I got on the aluminum frame. You pay a slight weight penalty with the steel, but you gain the "feel of steel", the additional water bottle bosses under the downtube, and the overall aesthetic of the steel bike. In my opinion, the comments you hear about aluminum being "harsh" don't really apply to a bike where you'll be using high volume tires with low pressures.
jp911 is offline  
Old 06-13-18, 03:34 PM
  #3  
tyrion
Senior Member
 
tyrion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 3,436

Bikes: Breezer Radar

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1854 Post(s)
Liked 1,210 Times in 575 Posts
The Bombtracks are the only ones that come stock as a 1x (I think), so if you get one of the others as frames and build it up as 1x yourself it will cost more.

Out of the 2 Bombtracks, the EXT has fatter tires and would be more versatile off road - not sure if that's important to you.
tyrion is offline  
Old 06-13-18, 06:52 PM
  #4  
garciawork
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Meridian, ID
Posts: 1,353

Bikes: Mikkelsen custom steel, Santa Cruz Chameleon SS, old trek trainer bike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 70 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I just built my RLT steel (last years color scheme, gorgeous blue), set up 1x11 with shimano hydro's. LOVE it! The ride and geo is absolutely fantastic. Running 35's at the moment, plan to get a second wheelset for wider, and throw some 30's on the wheels I have now, and I'll be pretty set. Hit some mild dirt today, and it was awesome. Can't go wrong IMO!
garciawork is offline  
Old 06-13-18, 07:30 PM
  #5  
Metieval
Senior Member
 
Metieval's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,678

Bikes: Road bike, Hybrid, Gravel, Drop bar SS, hard tail MTB

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1134 Post(s)
Liked 215 Times in 156 Posts
what size do you need?

47? If so snag this one!!!

Niner RLT 9 Steel 2 Star Apex Bike | Jenson USA
Metieval is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 08:34 AM
  #6  
ph0rk
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Southern Appalachians
Posts: 453

Bikes: A hauler, a commuter, and a steamroller.

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Cosmic stallion frames aren't being restocked until winter, if your size isn't available.

RLT 9's are all pressfit BB's, if you care.

Norco Search XRs are cool, but also out of stock. Jamis renegades are cool, and available.

None come as a 1x stock, but are available as a frameset.
ph0rk is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 08:39 AM
  #7  
chas58
Senior Member
 
chas58's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 4,564

Bikes: too many of all kinds

Mentioned: 35 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1042 Post(s)
Liked 296 Times in 239 Posts
Nothing wrong with 2x if that is how the bike comes. It is more versatile
For your type of riding, I greatly prefer CX geometry. It is much more agile, and doesn't have pedal strike issues. Gravel geometry (long, low, slack) is a bit sluggish for urban riding.

I put cross tires on my bike with downtube shifters, and quickly went back to slicks. those knobs hurt if your hand bumps them when shifting!!!
chas58 is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 08:45 AM
  #8  
Marcus_Ti 
FLIR Kitten to 0.05C
 
Marcus_Ti's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Lincoln, Nebraska
Posts: 5,331

Bikes: Roadie: Seven Axiom Race Ti w/Chorus 11s. CX/Adventure: Carver Gravel Grinder w/ Di2

Mentioned: 30 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2347 Post(s)
Liked 398 Times in 249 Posts
Generally speaking....your buck goes much further with prebuilt bikes than building yourself....unless you strike some wicked deals, or what you want doesn't exist in consumer space readily as prebuilt.

All 4 of the rids you list would be great for what you propose...Can you testride any and or all of them, to see which you like the handling/ride of? All-City are a QBP brand so are everywhere locally--Niner has lots of LBS across the country. Don't know about Bombtrack.
Marcus_Ti is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 09:17 AM
  #9  
jp911
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 198

Bikes: Trek Madone 5.2 Dura Ace, Niner RLT9 aluminum, Santa Cruz 5010 CC

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 54 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 20 Posts
Looks like Niner phased out 1x in their latest build options. Maybe less popular?
jp911 is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 11:00 AM
  #10  
RockiesDad
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Bay Area, CA
Posts: 415
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 209 Post(s)
Liked 24 Times in 14 Posts
Take a ride up north to Point Reyes and check out Black Mountain Cycles. This is near the top on my list...

Home - Black Mountain Cycles
RockiesDad is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 01:11 PM
  #11  
rgconner
Senior Member
 
rgconner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 1,149

Bikes: Curtis Inglis Road, 80's Sekai touring fixie

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 471 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Originally Posted by RockiesDad View Post
Take a ride up north to Point Reyes and check out Black Mountain Cycles. This is near the top on my list...

Home - Black Mountain Cycles
+1

have my MCD on order, waiting for frames to come in!

Hard to beat the price for frame plus fork: $695.

And the new rear dropouts are pretty sick:
rgconner is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 01:13 PM
  #12  
Metieval
Senior Member
 
Metieval's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,678

Bikes: Road bike, Hybrid, Gravel, Drop bar SS, hard tail MTB

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1134 Post(s)
Liked 215 Times in 156 Posts
i don't like hiten, 4130, 653,

725 may be okay

853 is the bomb!

with that said look at this bike

Save Up to 60% Off Disc Brake CycloCross Cross CX Bikes - Motobecane Whipshot 853 Reynolds 853 Steel SRAM FORCE1 Hydraulic Disc Brake CycloCross Cross CX Bikes
Metieval is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 01:21 PM
  #13  
browngw 
Senior Member
 
browngw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Port Dover Ontario Canada
Posts: 1,419

Bikes: 1965 Dilecta Le Blanc, 1956 Royal Nord, 1971 Robin Hood Sports, 1972 CCM Turismo,1976 SuperCycle Excalibur, 1979 Raleigh DL1, 1984 Rossi, 2014 Salsa Vaya, 2017 Felt DD70, 2012 Giant Halfway Folder, 2019 Giant Lafree and others

Mentioned: 37 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 302 Post(s)
Liked 226 Times in 120 Posts
The Salsa Vaya is a good steel all-rounder and I run mine with 38mm tires. Frames are available, but I agree that built up is cheaper. I love the details on the bike and the decent components. Mine is a 2014 and has stood up well to road riding and gravel/crushed limestone

I paid $1599 CDN in 2014.
__________________
We are what we reflect. We are the changes that we bring to this world. Ride often. -Geo.-
browngw is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 02:00 PM
  #14  
mstateglfr 
Sunshine
 
mstateglfr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 12,789

Bikes: '18 class built steel roadbike, '19 Fairlight Secan, '88 Schwinn Premis , Black Mountain Cycles Monstercross V4, '89 Novara Trionfo

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5594 Post(s)
Liked 2,796 Times in 1,622 Posts
Originally Posted by Bicycho415 View Post
Please feel free to ask any questions. I really would like to get into bike exploration and I really like the comfort of gravel bikes in the city because our roads are absolute ****e.
ill phrase my suggestion in the form of a question.
have you considered Black Mountain Cycles?

as mentioned, they are local at an hour north of you. The owner, Mike Varley, has been in the business for more than a few decades now, worked on bike design at haro/masi, has forgotten more than most will ever know about the history of local bike design and culture, and all his frames are quality heat treated and butted cromoly steel with ED coating to prevent rust. Nothing is proprietary either. BSA BB, 27.2 round seatpost, 1 1/8 headtube- standard and servicable for years to come.
if you want a carbon fork, just go buy a Whiskey(#9?) one after the fact. Not much need for one in my view, but to each their own. Canti and disc brake options now too.

I bought a frame and built mine up for a lot less than what Mike charges, but he build the wheels and charges accordingly.
anyways, if you buy a frame from him, he will help talk you thru the build if you have questions.

buy local(even if it's made overseas!)



if you are set only on the options you mention, i would go with All City. It's made in the same reliable factory as the Black Mountain, uses the same rust coating, has a Whiskey fork, has the same dropouts as Black Mountain, and is well spec'd overall.
mstateglfr is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 02:28 PM
  #15  
mstateglfr 
Sunshine
 
mstateglfr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 12,789

Bikes: '18 class built steel roadbike, '19 Fairlight Secan, '88 Schwinn Premis , Black Mountain Cycles Monstercross V4, '89 Novara Trionfo

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5594 Post(s)
Liked 2,796 Times in 1,622 Posts
Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
hey OP- dont think that 4130 is any worse than 853. It isnt. What's more important is the frame geometry, butting profile of each tube, and thickness of each tube.

these 3 things matter way more than if it's unbranded 4130 or branded 853 tubing. The 3 things mentioned will make a great bike if done properly for the intended rider and activity.

and there is just no reason to dismiss 653. Funny that its 'not liked', as if 2 identical bikes in every way but frame tubing being 653 and 853 were ridden over and again to compare and 653 was deemed 'not liked'? Ha.

if a bike is made of 653 and doesnt ride well or isnt 'fun, it's because the bike is poorly made/has poor geometry. It isnt because 653 isnt good enough.
mstateglfr is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 02:37 PM
  #16  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: High Falls, NY, USA
Posts: 39,972

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 486 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6900 Post(s)
Liked 1,538 Times in 971 Posts
I'm sure you'll enjoy any of those bikes. My gravel bike is a 1971 Raleigh Super Course.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 02:43 PM
  #17  
Metieval
Senior Member
 
Metieval's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,678

Bikes: Road bike, Hybrid, Gravel, Drop bar SS, hard tail MTB

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1134 Post(s)
Liked 215 Times in 156 Posts
Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
hey OP- dont think that 4130 is any worse than 853. It isnt.
when did "like" get turned into "worse"?

do you need a dictionary?
Metieval is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 03:06 PM
  #18  
mstateglfr 
Sunshine
 
mstateglfr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 12,789

Bikes: '18 class built steel roadbike, '19 Fairlight Secan, '88 Schwinn Premis , Black Mountain Cycles Monstercross V4, '89 Novara Trionfo

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5594 Post(s)
Liked 2,796 Times in 1,622 Posts
Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
when did "like" get turned into "worse"?

do you need a dictionary?
I dont need a dictionary. Since many times in conversation, something that a person doesnt like is then viewed as 'worse', i thought I helpful to mention to the OP that he shouldnt view frame material in that way.
no dictionary needed at all.

I am gushing with curiosity as to why you don't like 653. And what bikes have you ridden that are made of 653? Form what ive read, it's an odd duck mix of other tube models to satisfy Merckx back in the day. Does this also mean you don't like the tube models that makes up 653?
did you mean 631 this whole time? And if so, what bike have you ridden in 631 and 853 to determine you don't like one but think the other is 'the bomb'?

so much curiosity.
mstateglfr is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 03:16 PM
  #19  
trailangel
Senior Member
 
trailangel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Pasadena, CA
Posts: 4,657

Bikes: Schwinn Varsity

Mentioned: 21 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1787 Post(s)
Liked 557 Times in 328 Posts
Second the Black Mountain cycle..... really close to bay area.
trailangel is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 03:25 PM
  #20  
Metieval
Senior Member
 
Metieval's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,678

Bikes: Road bike, Hybrid, Gravel, Drop bar SS, hard tail MTB

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1134 Post(s)
Liked 215 Times in 156 Posts
OP quote
I will be rolling on mostly roads as I do live in San Francisco and the bay area.
HILLS , lighter will be his friend! if he wants steel the lighter steel will be his friend.

he also wanted 1x, I gave my opinion on steels, I gave him a 1x 853 affordable option.

the OP is the ONLY person I feel like assisting.
My line up of steels that are most desirable most likely line up with the majority of the world, and they will excluding retrogrouches. I don't have to prove diddly to you.

if you want to sell the OP on 4130 > 853 go for it, just don't quote me in the process and Intentionally swap meanings in process.

Last edited by Metieval; 06-14-18 at 03:36 PM.
Metieval is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 06:43 PM
  #21  
pbass
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: SoCal
Posts: 979

Bikes: 2016 Surly Cross Check singlespeed, 2019 Kona Rove ST

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 216 Post(s)
Liked 196 Times in 142 Posts
I'm sold on steel, and 1x11. My gravel/adventure/urban/you-name it bike is a trusty Cross Check, originally flat bar singlespeed, now a drop bar, 1x11 SLX, with a Gevenalle shifter(kinda like having a bar-end shifter on your hood).
Anyhow, the Surly is 4130, and to me at least, rides super comfy in the rough, FWIW.
pbass is offline  
Old 06-14-18, 07:29 PM
  #22  
mstateglfr 
Sunshine
 
mstateglfr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 12,789

Bikes: '18 class built steel roadbike, '19 Fairlight Secan, '88 Schwinn Premis , Black Mountain Cycles Monstercross V4, '89 Novara Trionfo

Mentioned: 102 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5594 Post(s)
Liked 2,796 Times in 1,622 Posts
Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
if you want to sell the OP on 4130 > 853 go for it, just don't quote me in the process and Intentionally swap meanings in process.
so...i cut out the parts where you don't justify the reason(s) for not liking 653(or is it 631?) since it didn't seem to have much substance.
I havent intentionally, or even accidentally, swapped meanings.
I also havent tried to sell anyone on 4130 being better than 853.
Heat treated double butted 4130 in a proper butting profile for the intended use is simply not something to dismiss.
do you even know the insignificant weight difference between an 853 frame and an otherwise identically built HT 4130 DB frame? This doesnt even begin to address the fact that there are over 500 tubeset variations for 853(per Reynolds). Which group of tubes of that 500+ grouping is 'the bomb'?


I really don't like posting this sort of stuff because i love reading the opinions of others on this board...when they arent what appears to be baselessly dismissive.
if you had just posted that 853 is the bomb, i would have probably just cocked my head a bit and moved on. But I found it funny and potentially detrimental to the OP's opinion formation that you don't like anything less than 853 and provide no reason(s) why.

OP- apologies for this tangent. I'll try to remove myself or stay on topic which is you and a new bike.
mstateglfr is offline  
Old 06-15-18, 06:19 AM
  #23  
cobra_kai
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 88
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Check out the Rodeo Labs Flaanimal 4.0. I have a 3.0 I got when they were blowing them out and it's been great. I built it up with Sram 1x and run it with 700c 32mm tires on the road and hardpack 650b x 47 for gravel and dirt. The 4.0 is definitely not the cheapest frame around at $1500 but it's 725 steel, comes with a really nice carbon fork, has a billion mounts, and is super flexible with drive train options.
cobra_kai is offline  
Old 06-15-18, 04:27 PM
  #24  
Bicycho415
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 20
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Excellent responses everyone. And i haven't even the time to read them all . I'll let you know what I decide on. They have a carbon version of the RLT 9 at big wheel bikes on van ness. But they loaned out the fork for a rider and won't get it back for a week. So i'm going back to test ride it when they get the fork back. We'll see how it fits.

I asked the LBS and they said that the 58cm in All City Stallion might be too big as they size funny. So I'm going to try and find a 55cm, the next size down.

I'm sure I'll be stoked on any of my purchases. And yes I've found that the better deal is buying a complete bike. As you start buying everything individually, you basically start spending hundreds of dollars more for the same thing. So maybe a complete bike would be best.

I agree about the CX geometry. I do like a very lively ride for city riding. Fast, agile. But I do like a more relaxed geometry as well. So maybe a CX frame is in my future too. But there's so much to think about.

I will most certainly check out Black Mountain bikes in Marine.

Super excited to get riding on nice wheels.

The RLT 9 steel is or Cosmic Stallion is still where I"m leaning.

Last edited by Bicycho415; 06-15-18 at 04:35 PM.
Bicycho415 is offline  
Old 06-15-18, 04:37 PM
  #25  
Bicycho415
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 20
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
so...i cut out the parts where you don't justify the reason(s) for not liking 653(or is it 631?) since it didn't seem to have much substance.
I havent intentionally, or even accidentally, swapped meanings.
I also havent tried to sell anyone on 4130 being better than 853.
Heat treated double butted 4130 in a proper butting profile for the intended use is simply not something to dismiss.
do you even know the insignificant weight difference between an 853 frame and an otherwise identically built HT 4130 DB frame? This doesnt even begin to address the fact that there are over 500 tubeset variations for 853(per Reynolds). Which group of tubes of that 500+ grouping is 'the bomb'?


I really don't like posting this sort of stuff because i love reading the opinions of others on this board...when they arent what appears to be baselessly dismissive.
if you had just posted that 853 is the bomb, i would have probably just cocked my head a bit and moved on. But I found it funny and potentially detrimental to the OP's opinion formation that you don't like anything less than 853 and provide no reason(s) why.

OP- apologies for this tangent. I'll try to remove myself or stay on topic which is you and a new bike.
No worries, everyone has an opinion and yes 853 is the holy grail of steel. But that's not to say other formulas are inferior.
Bicycho415 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.