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Help with Serotta vs. Seven(21 posts)

Help with Serotta vs. Sevennewti
Aug 12, 2001 9:49 AM
Perhaps this has already debated, but here goes:

I've narrowed my choices down to Legend Ti and Axiom (although I'm open to any other suggestions).

I ride centuries, Ride the Rockies, Death Ride, etc...Love to climb, and WANT to love the descent, which my old bike (Steelman SR) did not enable me to do. 6'2", 180, long legs and arms...have been sized between 61 and 62. Looking for responsive handling, efficient climbing, and comfort.

Legend Ti feels a bit more lively, with a front end that feels totally locked in. Axiom feels a little more laid back, unbelievably smooth...but I'm told they will build it to feel however I want it to.

In a quandry...any thoughts, experience, suggestions, or alternatives appreciated.
Aug 12, 2001 10:29 AM
what's wrong with the way the Steelman handles? Maybe you need to pinpoint that first. You're going to need to be able to communicate it properly to the builder in order to get a bike you feel comfortable with. Either builder is capable of building you a rock solid bike.
Aug 12, 2001 11:14 AM
Good advice that I've taken into account...after having the frame checked, the fork, the wheels trued, my riding style/technique, etc...I think it comes down to 2 things. 1) I was missized to start with (short top tube) 2) the resulting geometry puts my position and weight too far forward, and on steeper descents, that weight get too far out over the front axle, resulting in a serious death wobble. In any event, I am not comfortable on the bike.
Aug 12, 2001 11:33 AM
cool. Sounds like it's mostly a sizing problem. Well, if you were planning to go with a stock sized Serotta, you might encounter the same problem (as their top tubess are on the short side) unless you went with a larger frame. Going custom with Serotta or Seven (or even with Steelman) would probably be great. For high speed stability, I think a beefy downtube and a rock solid fork are pluses (along with perfect fit and correct alignment). In any case, I think your current bike is always your best resource when it comes to specing a custom ride--really analyze your position and be sure the builder knows what you like and don't like about your current setup. Good luck.
All Legends are custombike_junkie
Aug 12, 2001 1:16 PM
Hank, not sure if you knew, but all Legends include custom geometry, so sizing would be done right. Agree with your other comments, just wanted to point that out.
Aug 12, 2001 2:35 PM
they just have a "stock" geometry posted for their frames on their site--as does Seven, so I guess my comments weren't very relevant (unless those numbers say something about the two companies' approach to sizing in general). The Serotta stock geometry runs a bit short, .8 cm shorter than the Seven in the 56 size, which happens to be just the way I like it. In fact, the Serotta 56 would fit just like my custom bike--if I was buying a bike today, I would undoubtably opt for a stock Classique ti with the new compact geometry option. I also like those new Serotta dropouts.

geo charts
Aug 12, 2001 3:47 PM
Seven & Serotta do a compact if that's what you want. I love the look and opted for it on my Legend. I think it's more cosmetics than anything, but for the price of these frames, you ought to love what you buy. I think the Classique is a good deal for the price compared to say, a similarly priced Litespeed.
Aug 12, 2001 3:56 PM
nice. Yeah, I don't think it does much. The main benifit for me would be that it's easier to slap it into the repair stand, which I do frequently cause I ride in the rain a lot. I'm also a mtber, so I'm used to (and like) the look. I don't know, I guess it marginally lowers the center of gravity, which might make it feel a tad more tossable on tricky descents, but the effect would probably be more mental than anything. And yeah, the Classique seems like a heck of a deal.
Aug 12, 2001 4:12 PM
I rode mtb's first, so the look was natural to me as well. Plus Bontrager was doing it before Giant and everybody else on his Road Lite back in '95 or so. I recently sold my Road Lite and it was a heck of a bike with a cool lineage and it made me a fan of compacts.
Never cared for KB's mtb's however, too nervous. Ben Serotta himself told me the benifits are slight, but include a teensy bit of weight savings, and added responsiveness. It does feel more compact and fun when out of the saddle or even stopped at a light. It comes down to legs and lungs, but we already know that.
Aug 12, 2001 4:26 PM
I still have a old Bonti cross bike from Keith's garage days - 1985 or so. Lugged Columbus SL, built up with Record and Mafacs. I had a Race and hated it, too - freakin' squirelly endo machine. I've been riding an Ibis Mojo since '95.
Aug 12, 2001 4:37 PM
Now there's a nice handling mtb. I owned an Alibi for awhile, and it didn't even feel like aluminum (that's a good thing). Same geometry as the Mojo, and it was my favorite hardtail, just perfect handling. Night and day from my Race Lite, although the Bonty climbed a little better, everywhere else was scary. The crossbike sounds cool. I'd pick up a nice Bonty CX if I could find a clean one. It'd be a great commuter.
Aug 12, 2001 4:46 PM
the Race was incredible for climbing--I could get up anything on that bike. But I don't mind sacrificing a bit of that climbing prowess for my being able to get back down stuff alive. I know some people who love Races, though. Right now I'm lusting after a Ripley, but like the Serotta, it's gonna be a while...
re: Help with Serotta vs. Sevengastonlit
Aug 12, 2001 12:29 PM
I had the same criteria when looking for a new bike. I had it narrowed down to serrota/seven/moots. I came to the realization that each could give me exactly what I wanted. I then started thinking about the aesthetics of each frame. I decided on the seven odonata for it's rather industrial/edgy look. I also have a Davidson so the beauty of a hand built frame(lugged in this case) is something I already have . Serrota reminds me of my Davidson in appearance. My odonata is everything I asked for.. very stiff in the bottom bracket, extremely comfortable for looooong rides and a descenter that is beyond my nerve. I also had it come with no decals including on the stem/seatpost/forks. Just the material and workmanship to look at. At the level that your looking at you can't go wrong on either of those bike bulders. It really comes down to the "other" things that come to your mind
It's all about youRoadster
Aug 12, 2001 1:01 PM
Agreed. Both builders will provide you with an excellent platform. I've owned a Seven Odonata and a Serotta Legend ti. My experience with the Seven builders was that they could come up with a fairly even match for the kind of ride quality you wanted. The problem was finding a comparable Seven to test ride at first. You could ride 6 different Seven frames and each would be different depending on the rider's individual specs. With Serotta, every Legend ti delivers on the promise of creating the most steel-like ride that ti can produce. In the end, you will not go wrong either way. It's more the aesthetic appeal - choice of paint, polish, satin or stealth finish, the look of the frame (classic like Serotta or high tech like Seven). We should all have your quandry ... it really comes down to you.
re: Help with Serotta vs. Sevenbike_junkie
Aug 12, 2001 1:23 PM
My dealer carries both and I chose the Serotta Legend Ti. Both are great bikes, no doubt. Serotta offers many paint or 1/2 paint options, as well as brushed or matte finish, Seven doesn't. Serotta's
dropouts are nicer, period. The tapered tubes at the BB junction of a
Legend look beefy and mean. It rides like steel but smoother and lighter, and the F1 fork makes for a very solid front end through the corners or high speed descents.

Serottas, regardless of material, have always been known for freight train stability on descents. Keep in mind that Seven and Serotta both will ask you about drivetrain stiffness, ride smoothness and handling preferences when you order.

I previously owned a VaMoots, and while nobody beats Moots' attention to detail, I prefer the ride and handling of my custom Serotta.

Sounds like a win-win to me.
re: Help with Serotta vs. SevenLone Gunman
Aug 12, 2001 2:06 PM
I am sort of in the same decision process myself. The next frame will be ti and am considering Seven, Serotta, and Lemond. Lemond? I am currently riding a Zurich, the geometry is the same for the Zurich and Ti, I like what I have but want Ti and am wondering what might be the huge or any disadvantage of sticking with a frame geometry that will be interchangeable steel to Ti. Cleaner welds? Weight? Thoughts?
re: Help with Serotta vs. Sevenharlett
Aug 12, 2001 3:22 PM
gastonlit and roadster are both right on. the idea of one being built better than the other or that there is a band of merry men and women building these frames that have orgasms all day long because they love their "art" is just so much hype. go and look at each frame if you can. ride them if you can. listen to which one says...."pssst I'm the one your mind wants". if neither of them talk flip a coin. with the communication you will be having with either builder they will give you a bike that fits and does what you want. ENJOY!!!!!!!
re: Help with Serotta vs. Sevenharlett
Aug 12, 2001 3:41 PM
personally i would buy the axiom and put serrota and legend ti decals on it. then i would tell everyone it's actually an older huffy....
re: Help with Serotta vs. Seven7ti
Aug 12, 2001 7:21 PM
I spent a considerable amount of time selecting my frame. Two of the frames I considered were the Serotta Legend Ti and the Seven Axiom Ti. I selected the Seven Axiom because is was lighter and I liked the beefy seat and chain stays. I also wanted a custom frame and Serotta charged for custom frames at the time. Last, but not least, I personally felt that the welds on the Seven were slightly superior to the Legends that I've seen. I've had my Seven for a year and I couldn't be happier. The bike rides like a dream, fits like a glove and climbs like a mountain goat. As for high speed decending, my Seven is more stable than any bike I've ridden. Both frames are superb and you just can't go wrong with either one, but I can't recommend the Seven highly enough.

Make your selection and don't look back - good luck!
Flip a Coingrzy mnky
Aug 13, 2001 9:33 AM
You can't go wrong with either bike. They are both extremely high end and will give you the ride of a lifetime. Serotta is a bit more established with 25 years of building custom bikes, but Seven has a really strong and growing following. I ride a Legend, my buddy rides an Odonata, and a third guy is getting an Axiom (he's larger in size/weight). Any of these bikes will will allow you to go further and faster than you've ever thought is possible.

Ultimately, like others have pointed out, it comes down to the asthetics and what appeals to you. There are more choices in color and appearence with the Serotta and their paint is flawless, but I'm not sure why you'd want to paint a ti bike - the polished/brushed ti is so easy to maintain. Kinda like the 3D dropouts on the Serotta. If there's any problem with your Serotta, Ben Serotta and his company will make it right. Seven will probably do the same, but I don't have any specific examples to quote.

I love the way my Legend rails on the descents, but my buddy on his Onodata can kick my butt. It ultimately comes down to rider skill, talent and nerve. Either machine will not hold you back.
Aug 13, 2001 10:15 AM
Agree on the finish options grz mnky. I went with brushed Ti on my Legend and am very happy with my decision. You can always have Serotta paint it later if you like, but you can't go from paint to bare Ti. I personally like the minimalist industrial look of Ti and the low maint it offers. Paint is just something to worry about scratches and chips with IMHO. The elegant tapered stays and 3DXL dropouts on the Serotta appealed to me more than the beefy straight stays of the Seven, but I respect both as being the pinnacle of Ti along with Moots. Like you said, can't go wrong.