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No mainstream love for steel?

Old 04-13-20, 04:39 PM
  #101  
fishboat
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Originally Posted by CAT7RDR View Post
Back in the day, you could predict the Motor Trend Car of the Year by the number of ads placed. Pay to play is alive and well.
..I remember the month that the mag came out and the Motor Trend Car Of The Year was the Renault Alliance. That was the last time I ever considered Motor Trend had anything useful to offer.

(Consumer Reports has also been on that list for the last few decades after they stated steel bike wheels had no advantages to offer over aluminum wheels)
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Old 04-13-20, 05:13 PM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by WizardOfBoz View Post
Indyfabz, I love the color of your bike! I had a Raleigh Competition (Carlton built) that was similar.
PPG Starlight Purple
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Old 04-13-20, 05:15 PM
  #103  
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Originally Posted by pbass View Post
Just curious, as I flip through the latest Bicycling magazine round up of "best bikes in every category". With the exception of one $11k road bike, there's not a single steel bike. There's one high end titanium Moots. Otherwise, it's all carbon or aluminum. There's so many great steel rides out there now in different price ranges, especially in the gravel category, I just find it a little baffling. Is it about steel having a bad weight rap? Of course, I know I'm talking Bicycling Mag and not The Radavist or what-have-you, but still, so many folks prefer steel I find it curious.
My take is that advertising drives the bus. The vast majority of carbon fiber bikes are mass produced at relatively low cost in Asia. That is where the sales volume is. The bike mags love to cover the high end stuff and the ads all seem to feature the top models. Most folks seem to be attracted to bikes that look like the pro's bikes. But they can't afford to spend $10K+ on a bike, but they get all wound up by a cheap look alike.

On the other hand steel bikes are mostly handmade in smaller shops that don't have the advertising budget of Giant or Trek. They also don't have as much advertising space on the down tube for the name to be displayed in huge letters.
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Old 04-13-20, 09:02 PM
  #104  
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Hey Belgarath, I have one of those Specialized Tricross steel bikes- nice black paint job, Tiagra, I've ridden it a lot and call it "the Tank" for its weight compared to the Kona Roadhouse I bought last year. That's a wonderful bike that I love riding, too bad they discontinued it. I ride the Tank (Tricross) as a commuter bike and I'm going to put a rack on it for outings, etc. What's the widest tires you've put on yours?

Stay safe out there.
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Old 04-13-20, 09:11 PM
  #105  
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Middle man

Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
I have re-read all the comments on this thread, and I still say it all comes back to money. Think about it, except for a few insanely price CF frames, they are all laid up in China. They pay some poor Chinese woman probably 10 cents an hour to press CF and resin into a mold. They bake it, and MAGIC you have a bike frame. I cant believe it cost these Chinese mfg even $100 to lay up those frames. (I would really like to know what that cost is). Then again just like magic with the right name and the right advertising you have a $10,000 bike. And making that kind of profit, you can have a huge advertising budget, and magazines take that money and highly tout those bikes.

Yup its the money.
yup the middle man makes the money and some poor Chinese women goes home high in the chemicals used in the factory. ..
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Old 04-13-20, 09:47 PM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by krecik View Post
I like steel.

I think it all depends on a person's riding style, some people ride... what's the right word? Calmly I guess... So they go for something more finesse. I like steel because it's cheap, and durable and I can hop curbs without worrying that the whole thing might crack in half and poke a top tube through my lung or something...
It's bad when a top tube comes through the lung. It can spoil your ride for sure.
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Old 04-14-20, 08:46 AM
  #107  
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Here in Minneapolis, home of QBP, STEEL Surly's and All-City's almost outnumber everything else. Maybe a stretch, but they are probably the most common bikes on the road. And people love them, me included. Not among roadies and racers of course, but as a go-to everyday bike they are EVERYWHERE. Which is why I didn't buy one, but that's just me, I don't like to ride the most common bike on the road but they are great bikes. I've ridden a couple of old steel Trek's for years (I have two Trek 500's: a 1976 and 1983 - they used to be common). Great bikes, both of them, but limited on tire width. Built a STEEL Velo Orange Campeur in 2018 before it was discontinued. It's a fabulous commuter, touring, and do anything bike with 38mm tires and fenders.

To the worry over rusting: don't leave it out in the snow all winter. Open up the bottom bracket occasionally if you run through a lot of water. Aluminum is very susceptible to corrosion from salt-laden moisture, so not exactly a remedy in places like the midwest if you ride it in the winter. Even then, rusting to failure doesn't happen overnight, so you can buy a cheap old steel bike and it could still last a long time - unless it was already well rusted.

People want to have the coolest and latest shiny object that all the cool kids are buying, it's human nature. That isn't steel, but steel has stood the test of time and those who know it love it.
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Old 04-14-20, 09:20 AM
  #108  
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Iíve got more than a dozen reasons to love steel

When my ability to ride hard and fast exceeds the limits of my steel bikes, then Iíll sell them. Iíve got CF, Ti as well. No Al currently, except for the mtb.


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Old 04-14-20, 10:16 AM
  #109  
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New Cinelli Supercorsa art......10 colors and custom sizes from 48 to 64 cm










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Old 04-14-20, 01:44 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by JayKay3000 View Post
I'm hopefully joining the steel world soon My only issue is I think steel and I think rust, but then I owned an original mini once and that thing rusted like nothing else.
It'll be fine. Steel frames don't rust at anything like the rate old Minis used to.
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Old 04-19-20, 11:24 PM
  #111  
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Originally Posted by rnjl View Post
Hey Belgarath, I have one of those Specialized Tricross steel bikes- nice black paint job, Tiagra, I've ridden it a lot and call it "the Tank" for its weight compared to the Kona Roadhouse I bought last year. That's a wonderful bike that I love riding, too bad they discontinued it. I ride the Tank (Tricross) as a commuter bike and I'm going to put a rack on it for outings, etc. What's the widest tires you've put on yours?

Stay safe out there.
Iíve got the same exact paint. Was made for just one year. I call mine the Caddy since it rides like an old school Cadillac. I totally lucked out on mine due to year end clearance at a substantial discount. I as planning on a Surly Straggler Disc but came across the Tricross at my LBS.

When I set it up originally as a commuter I put fenders and a rack on mine. Iíve now taken them off for the time being. Now more set up as a gravel. I was able to put Specialized Trigger Pro 38s on it with plenty of clearance. Theyíve since come out with 3 new gravel tires but I like the Triggers. Fork clearance is huge but the limiting factor is the rear. Might be able to do 41 but it might be close.

I originally put a Brooks leather saddle on it but recently replaced it with a Specialized Power Expert. Very comfortable saddle and I donít have to worry about covering it when not on the bike.
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Old 04-20-20, 06:34 PM
  #112  
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Hi again Belgarath, thanks for reply. The LBS wasn't sure I could put anything wider than 32's on the Tricross so it's great to hear you have 38's on it, that's what I'll do next time. It IS a smooth riding bike, very comfortable. I like the stock saddle it- have ridden many miles with no problems down there. But the Kona I bought last fall had a Brooks Cambium saddle which I really didn't like, so I took it off and put on a Specialized saddle which was close to the one on the Tricross. Too bad the big bike companies don't make more like these. Happy riding.
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Old 04-21-20, 09:50 AM
  #113  
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Again say what you want about frames other than steel. Just remember there are still examples of steel frames the Wright Brothers welded up that are almost 120 years old. What condition will the aluminium and plastic CF frames of today be in when they are 120 years old?
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Old 04-21-20, 11:02 AM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
Again say what you want about frames other than steel. Just remember there are still examples of steel frames the Wright Brothers welded up that are almost 120 years old.
Yeah, that's what happens when you put things in museums -- they last a long time.
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Old 04-21-20, 11:08 AM
  #115  
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Well my High School Ride sat in my mother Fruit Cellar for 35 years and held up pretty well. No where near that controlled environment though
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Old 04-21-20, 12:24 PM
  #116  
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I have four steel bikes (MTB, fixed, road, touring/commuter) and they all perform great at their various weights and with different tubesets. However, I often feel unjustly pigeonholed as some retro-guy even though none of the bikes are more than 10 years old.
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Old 04-21-20, 01:09 PM
  #117  
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Single speed steel
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Old 04-21-20, 01:24 PM
  #118  
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Is it about steel having a bad weight rap? Of course not. Most folks, in any industry, buy what the corporations are offering and buy products wherever corporations want to sell them - mass market chain stores. Most clothes are made in China. This is not because buyers prefer Chinese factories. According to 2015 data from the Nation Bicycle Dealers Assoc.: "Approximately 74% of bicycle units were sold through the mass merchant channel in 2015, representing 32% of the dollars at an average selling price of $89."
So most people who are going to buy a bike today will go to box stores and buy what Walmart and Target are selling. If you have more knowledge, care more about quality and like bikes that you can't find at Walmart, you may go to a local bike shop but you'll pay a lot more. "The approximately 4,000 specialty bicycle retailers commanded approximately 13% of the bicycle market in terms of unit sales in 2015, but 49% of the dollars."

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Old 04-21-20, 07:16 PM
  #119  
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In general I have been underwhelmed by the steel bikes I have owned even though in theory they should have been to my liking, because in general I will sacrifice weight for comfort.

in general it does feel like steel is less explosive than aluminum and explosive is what makes bike riding fun.

I think also think that this talk about steel being a forgiving frame material also only applies to low end steel and high end steel, having thinner walls, has to be stiffer to compensate, which then makes it more like aluminum. High end steel seems to also have comparable tube diameter to aluminum. The one aspect I like most about steel bikes is thinner tube diameters.
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Old 04-21-20, 10:27 PM
  #120  
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Originally Posted by adlai View Post
In general I have been underwhelmed by the steel bikes I have owned even though in theory they should have been to my liking, because in general I will sacrifice weight for comfort.

in general it does feel like steel is less explosive than aluminum and explosive is what makes bike riding fun.

I think also think that this talk about steel being a forgiving frame material also only applies to low end steel and high end steel, having thinner walls, has to be stiffer to compensate, which then makes it more like aluminum. High end steel seems to also have comparable tube diameter to aluminum. The one aspect I like most about steel bikes is thinner tube diameters.
I take it that you have actually never ridden anything but an aluminum bike. From your comments, you have never ridden a good steel bike, a stainless bike, a titanium bike, or even a carbon bike.
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Old 04-21-20, 10:32 PM
  #121  
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Old 04-22-20, 04:15 PM
  #122  
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I just bought my first steel frame, a Cinelli Vigorelli Road. Columbus Thron steel with a Columbus Carbon fork. Not sure how ďgoodĒ it is, but Iím looking forward to it.

Going to build it out with 105 components and some other extra parts I have around as an second road bike to my Cervelo. Actually using the wheels, stem, bars and saddle that came stock on the Cervelo.
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Old 04-22-20, 05:12 PM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by Johnk3 View Post
I take it that you have actually never ridden anything but an aluminum bike. From your comments, you have never ridden a good steel bike, a stainless bike, a titanium bike, or even a carbon bike.
Yup. most of my bikes have been bikesdirect mid to low end, or stuff I get off of ebay mid to low end. I've never spent more than...$600 on a single bike.

But I've gotten a good education today about how bike frames work out.

https://rolobikes.com/pdf/rolo-wheel-...FJXf4LMddysX1g
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Old 04-22-20, 07:08 PM
  #124  
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All steel is not created equally

Originally Posted by adlai View Post
Yup. most of my bikes have been bikesdirect mid to low end, or stuff I get off of ebay mid to low end. I've never spent more than...$600 on a single bike.

But I've gotten a good education today about how bike frames work out.

https://rolobikes.com/pdf/rolo-wheel-...FJXf4LMddysX1g
Although I do not know the type or quality of the steel bikes you have ridden, I must say that there is a vast range of bicycle tubing quality from small-gauge-sewer-pipe to Columbus XCr. The Italian company Columbus makes at least 7 different levels of steel bike tubing. The Columbus XCr is stainless steel, cold drawn (not welded) triple butted, and paper thin. It is also very expensive, almost $900 just for a raw set of tubes. Many cheap steel bikes are very heavy, mass produced and of generally poor quality. It is not fair to equate their ride with that of a handmade steel bike using good quality steel tubing. It would be like comparing the ride of an old pick up truck to a Maserati.

Most of the riders who are commenting about steel frames are most likely talking about handmade steel frames using good quality steel tubing. Handmade steel frames are not inexpensive. New frames from well known frame builders in the US can easily cost over $5,000. They may also be talking about many of the old classic handmade Italian or French racing bike frames which in their day were the very best and are highly desirable collector's items.
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Old 04-23-20, 04:38 AM
  #125  
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Perhaps not as ubiquitous as CF or AL, but of my 8 bikes, 5 are steel, 2 CF and 1 Ti. Surly and Marin have many nice steel options. I love my Krampus, Pine Mountain and Four Corners Elite, Colnago MXL and Nishiki.

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