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TST/Mongoose Ti frames?(8 posts)

TST/Mongoose Ti frames?fallzboater
Jul 20, 2003 6:27 PM
I'm going to be test-riding a TST/Mongoose Ti frame out this week, I see that you can get them new for $629 at:

Does anyone have one of these? Any comments? The bike I'm looking at is the US-made FFBR00; new frame with ugly used Reynolds Ouzo Comp fork and nice used 9-speed Dura Ace (except Ultegra/Velocity wheels). What would you think it's worth?

First rate frameNessism
Jul 21, 2003 6:55 AM
TST makes a very nice frame. They have an excellent reputation for quality and have some of the best manufacturing tooling in the industry. I've ridden several TST frames and all have been excellent in my opinion.

A few negatives do apply however. First is resale value; Mongoose/TST has zero cashe value and used frames rarely fetch more than a few hundered on ebay. Next is the geometery of the Mongoose spec'ed frames; they are set up to use a very short fork. With a Reynolds fork installed, the front end will raise up about 12 mm over specification. Not a major thing to some people but something to keep in mind. Lastly is apperance of the frame; no decales/graphics of any kind. Also, some of these discount frames have a medium poor brush job on them. You will want to take a scotchbright pad to the rough spots to even out the apperance.

The reason I know all this is because earlier in the year I purchased one, got rid if it, and receintly purchased another which I plan to ride (expecting delivery today!). Found a good deal on a Columbus Muscle fork, which is one of the shortest carbon fork on the market, so it doesn't jack up the geometery too much. I also own a LS Tuscany so it'll be interesting to note the differences between them.

Good luck.

First rate framesaltytri
Jul 21, 2003 4:52 PM
I have a 56cm FFBR00. With a Reynolds Ouzo Pro fork, the top tube is level, so I don't understand the comment about the need for a "very short fork." Mine is nicely finished with no "rough spots" or other problems with the finish. It is a very good value for a straight-gauged Ti frame, provided that it fits you of course. It weighs less than 1/2 lb more than my custom built butted Ti frame, rides the same as far as I am able to tell, and costs about 1/5th as much. It came nicely faced and chased and ready to build. The look without ornamentation is businesslike/industrial and appeals to me. If you need lettering, have the local sign shop make something up for a few bucks.
More infoNessism
Jul 21, 2003 5:40 PM
While your bike may look like the top tube is level, it is not. The Mongoose Ti frames were designed around a 365 mm fork, measured on an angle from the crown to the axle, or 362 mm measured parallel to the steerer tube. The Ozuo Pro measures 374 mm measured parallel to the steerer tube which is 12 cm higher than standard.

Regarding the finish, my first frame was bead blasted before the brushed finish was applied. Unfortunately, the bead blasted finish showed through the brushing where the tubes are welded together. It's not too hard to take a Scotchbrite pad to smooth over the bead blasted areas however. Fortunately, my second TST frame is much better in this regard and needs no finish work to be done. Your milage may vary.

In terms of build quality, the TST frames I've seen are as good or better than the Litespeed frames I've owned. TST does a nice job of facing and chasing so the buyer doesn't have to bother. I can't say the same for Litespeed.

You're Wrong about the Ouzo Pro specs...carpe_podium
Jul 22, 2003 7:10 AM
The 1" Ouzo Pro is 370 mm axle to crown.
Jul 22, 2003 11:01 AM
I've measured several Ouzo Pro's and all have been longer than 370 mm. The shortest has been 372 mm but most have been 374 mm.

To measure is to know.

Does this only apply to MONGOOSE frames, or all TST?Fez
Jul 25, 2003 6:18 AM
You wrote:

"Next is the geometery of the Mongoose spec'ed frames; they are set up to use a very short fork. With a Reynolds fork installed, the front end will raise up about 12 mm over specification."

Does this apply only to Mongoose spec and TST clearance frames from 1999-2001?

TST still makes frames for some big outfits, Douglas/Colorado Cyclist being one of them. The Douglas geometries are pretty standard, similar to Litespeed in the 53-55cm sizes. Colorado Cyclist specs an Ouzo Comp or Ouzo Pro on them.
Good questionNessism
Jul 26, 2003 6:37 AM
As you noticed, the Colorado Cyclist Douglas Ti frame geometery seems to be the same as Litespeed. There is no way of knowing the exact details regarding how the frames are speced though. And good luck trying to get information out of TST. They are a very good manufacturing company but are not set up to deal with customers directly. Maybe CC could answer this question?

I have an 2001 Litespeed catalogue, last year before integrated, in which they state that the frames are spec'ed to use a 368 mm fork, measured parallel to the steerer. Using an Ozuo Pro on one of these frames will lift the front end by 6 mm. The standard issue "Litespeed" branded forks of this era were similar, identical?, to the Look LDS series which measures, you guessed it, 368 mm.

Hope this info helps.