's Forum Archives - Components

Archive Home >> Components(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 )

Columbus tubing?(6 posts)

Columbus tubing?alexfr99
Dec 28, 2001 8:40 PM
Can anyone tell me where the different types of Columbus tubing rank? I'm more interested in the older steel frames. I am familiar with SLX, SL, TSX, Genius tubing.... but am not sure which ones are lighter-stronger etc....What is the hierarchy?
do a search for the web site. ......... nmJohnG
Dec 28, 2001 10:47 PM
re: Columbus tubing?zelig
Dec 29, 2001 2:23 AM
I'll take a stab at this having bikes going back to SL.

SL's the oldest, a double butted design, chrome moly tubing. It was similar to Reynolds 531 at the time. Many Italian cycles from the late 60's through the 70's were made with SL. A similar set but slightly thicker called SP was made for larger frames or heavier service. Oftentimes frames were made with an SL tubeset but an SP downtube. SLX (and SPX) are variations where the butted area included splines, somewhat akin to rifling in gun barrels. The thought was that this would increase stiffness in the butt area. TSX took this a step further with the splines going the length of the tube in the three main frame tubes. After TSX came MS (multi-shaped which never really caught on) and EL-OS which loosely translated into extra light-over size. The steel was different from the previous generation and proved to be very popular. Genius came out shortly thereafter and is made from Nivachrome. It has what Columbus calls differential butting where they used CAD to determine where and how thick the butts should be in each tube. It was also designed so that it could be used without lugs through fillet brazing or TIG. The nivachrome is supposed to be stronger than the previous generation but none of these frames sets is particularly thin so I wouldn't be too concerned about strength. Anyone who has picked up a Foco or SAT 14.5 top tube knows what thin means.

As far as weight, if you're going lugged, the EL-OS is probably the lightest followed by Genius and then SL. The splining added a bit of weight. Good luck.
re: Good Post,butRusty Coggs
Dec 29, 2001 7:39 AM
EL-OS was also Nivacrom alloy.Genius is lighter than EL-OS.Foco is the newest of the bunch and is Thermacrom alloy.In addition There are some more tubesets in nivacrom,Max being specaily shaped and butted for heavy riders, and Nemo ,being even lighter than Genius.Newer Cyclex tubesets top to bottom are Neuron,and Brian. Thron is a low end Chromoly, as is Gara and Aelle.Some tubesets were availavle in standard diameter and oversize.Others only as oversize, and some only in standard diameter.A bit difficult to make a 1-1 comparison of some of the newer mid to low end tubesets to the older stuff due to the internal rifling on some of the older stuff and how it affected weight and performance.The newer stuff uses oversize tube diameters to achieve greater stiffness.
re: Columbus tubing?mackgoo
Dec 29, 2001 9:02 AM E mail em they are pretty helpful.
re: Columbus tubing?David Feldman
Dec 29, 2001 2:14 PM
Another good site for Columbus information is Britain's Ceeway at; they have a good Columbus page.