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Who knows Colnago Steel?(21 posts)

Who knows Colnago Steel?Me Dot Org
Nov 14, 2001 3:56 PM
I've been eyeing a Colnago Crystal frame at which is a very pretty steel frame for $795. I'm wondering how this compares with the Colnago Classic frame, and how both the Classic and the Crystal compare with the Master X-lite, which can be had for under $1100 (with shipping) through Sdeals in England. Would the X-lite be worth the extra $300?

Feedback wanted!
Bo Jackson? (nm)js5280
Nov 14, 2001 4:33 PM
Bo don't know diddley (nm)nm
Nov 15, 2001 5:16 AM
Nice call! ;-) (nm)js5280
Nov 15, 2001 9:51 AM
re: Who knows Colnago Steel?Rusty Coggs
Nov 14, 2001 6:09 PM
The Crystal uses a nice oversize tubeset of Cyclex alloy (127ksi ultimate strength), and the GVH picture indicates a straight steel fork. The Master extra light uses a proprietary tubeset of oversize Nivacrom alloy(170ksi ultimate strength) and I believe a carbon fork.Foco or ultra foco is the top of the Columbus steel line with an ultimate strength of 205ksi If you are small or light, the Master Light may be a bit overbuilt,and if big and heavy, the Crystal could lack a bit in stiffness.This being due to the differences in strength of the alloys.But, these qualities can be damm subjective too.I have a Master Light with the steel fork, and found that fork to be not only heavy,but too stiff for my 6',150 pounds.The ride got a lot better with a carbon fork.I don't know anything about the classic.$1100 bucks for the MXL sounds like a steal and worth the $$,IMHO.
Nov 15, 2001 6:19 AM
The strength of the metal is independant of the metals stiffness. The stiffness is related to a characteristic called the Modulus of Elasticity - E. E for steel is the same regardless of the ultimate strength.
To clairify what this means in the real world, imagine three tubes each using a different alloy (one Cyclex, one Nivacrom, and one Thermocrom) but with exactly the same physical dimensions. The stiffness of these tubes will be the same. The tubes with the higher strength alloy will be able to withstand higher loading without permanently bending, however they will not be stiffer in any way.

In the interest of producing a lighter frame, the tube manufactures have adopted the use of higher strength alloys in order to allow them to reduce the tube thickness and thus weight. These thiner tubes are more flexable than the lower strength, but thicker, counterparts.

As far as the actual Colnago frames listed, I would expect the Crystal to ride similar, or maybe stiffer, than the MXL; the Crystal tubes are thicker however the MXL has shaped/formed tubes which are reputed to increase stiffness. The MXL will be lighter however. Difficult choice.
Thanks....Rusty Coggs
Nov 15, 2001 7:16 AM
you are correct.As I think about it, I knew better, but it did not come out that way.
re: Who knows Colnago Steel?CT1
Nov 14, 2001 8:49 PM
I owned a MXL earlier this year. It was a very nice frame, stiff, lively, etc. A little heavy and harsh though. NOT a "high" performance frame.... although quite pretty.

Unless you are "hung up" on the idea of a steel frame I'd also recommend looking at the Dream+ which can be had for $1K from Totalcycling. IMHO, a lighter, cheaper, and overall "higher" performance ride as compared to the MXL. The steel bike should be considered a traditional build and if that's what you are after then it's hard to beat the MXL.

OH, if you are under 155# or so and want a steel Colnago I'd highly recommend the Technos. My MXL was a bit harsh for my 147# weight. Hard to believe a steel frame would be harsh but mine was. The only bike that had a rougher ride was my Cadd5 Dale. Both frames are no longer in the stable.

Master X-light NOT a "high" performance frame?DA
Nov 15, 2001 5:57 AM
please... tell us why?
It's all relativeCT1
Nov 15, 2001 7:19 AM
OK, it IS a HIGH performance frame compared to 95+% of the 'stuff' out there but all things being equal you will give up a bit of "snap" and add a fair weight compared with a "real" race frame. I noticed a somewhat significant increase in attainable speed (under a variety of situations) when I got my LOOK and Giant bikes built. Oh, my riding partner also noticed an immediate JUMP in my overall speed after I built the LOOK KG bike.

I've been through a number of frames in the last two years and the MXL was probably the best of the "rejects". Ouch.... that probably sounds a lot worse than it should. Seriously, it's a VERY pretty frame that "feels" quite nice for many people ..... but it's too heavy and rough riding for my tastes. For a heavier rider (>175#) looking for a 'traditional' steel bike I highly recommend it though. That being said, I'll probably pick up a Technos sometime in the future just because I like the sweet tubeset on that little guy. Again, it's not a "high" performance frameset but I wouldn't expect or actually want that 'quality' in that frame.

They're only hammers.... some are better suited for certain jobs than others!
MXL great for a fat ba$tard like meColnagoFE
Nov 16, 2001 10:51 AM
Colnago advertised this frame as being designed for those above 165lbs so no wonder you found it too stiff. I find it just about perfect. Best frame I've ever ridden. is a bit heavy and if I was into serious racing I think I'd check out something like the Dream+, but for a long term bike that can take abuse and rides great for us fat...errr heavvier riders that can ride Colnago geometry it's nearly perfect. At the time I had it narrowed down to a Serotta CSI or this bike to replace my wrecked Merlin XL. Serotta was then charging for custom geometry (needed a shorter TT than stock) on the CSI so I went for the Colnago.
re: Who knows Colnago Steel?zero1
Nov 15, 2001 5:16 AM
i really do not know anything about the other frames but i purchased a mxl back in august and i love mine...i had an older derosa before the mxl...i know the derosa was an older bike but the colnago blows it me it is very comfortable and if i had to do it again i would buy the same identical bike...i know this might sound weird but the longer the ride the more comfortable the bike weighs 19 1/2 lbs but rides like it is a lot lighter...i do not know your size but the owner of bike tech in macon, ga has a technos for is really a good buy...good luck and ride safe...
re: I have a Crystal from GVHDoubleK
Nov 15, 2001 6:17 AM
I've had my Crystal for about a year now. Got if from Gary last fall. It weighs about 19.5 pounds built with Record 10 and standard wheels. It is my favorite bike for long rides and group hammerfests where the climbing is not widespread. I do not find it to ride harsh and has the ride of a good steel bike. It is definetly more rigid than my old SLX bike. Gary Hobbs is great to deal with also but I have bought pedals and tires from Total Cycling too so I am not against going overseas for stuff.

My take, if this is going to be your only bike, go with the MXL with at least the Flash fork (try to get the Force fork if you can). If you ride a small frame, go with the Crystal because the MXL will be a jackhammer (I ride a 60C-T). If you have another ride, (titanium or aluminum perhaps) get the Crystal and enjoy the fine ride of steel. Also, I wouldn't go "Alpine" with either bike due to the weight although my Crystal decends wonderfully. Good luck with your new bike.

Enjoy the ride!
Thank you allMe Dot Org
Nov 15, 2001 10:17 AM
...for the feedback. I'm 6' tall, 171 pounds, so I'm sort of on the borderline of what is considered a heavy rider, but probably too heavy for the Technos.

The $1100 price from Sdeals includes the Colanago carbon fork (I've forgotten the model, but the cheaper one). Sdeals web site seems to be down right now, so I can't confirm...

I would be building the bike with Campy Veloce components (and Mavic CXP 21 rims) from a crashed Bianchi Veloce Frame, so it wouldn't be 'top of the line', but a decent 'middle grade' bike.

I probably should check out an Aluminum frame. I'm an older rider (50) and my other ride is Columbus foco with Carve rear stays, which is very plush. I've been somewhat leery of Aluminum's reputation for harshness, but I know that a lot of people say that many of the new aluminum frames have a very acceptable ride. After reading the Dream Plus review I'm a little concerned about its reputation for slightly twitchy handling. I'm going to see if I can ride a built up dream....
now that's a far cry from a Surly or Gunnar!Jack S
Nov 15, 2001 11:26 AM
Good MemoryMe Dot Org
Nov 15, 2001 4:22 PM
You're right. I still may say f*ck it and just do a cruiser. Financially it would make a lot more sense....
consider thisxyz
Nov 16, 2001 6:10 AM
A Surly w/Campy would be much cooler than a not-high-performance Colnago w/low end Campy.
Another option on frame sourceCT1
Nov 15, 2001 6:40 PM
You might also check

I ordered my CT1 from Mike at Maestro and have been pleased with his correspondance. His price is hard to beat..... I think his delivered Dream+ with Flash fork is just under $1K. I think you will like the Dream+. My riding buddy has one and he's 52 and he goes like 'stink' on that bike. Nice ride quality.

Yes, it is true that many of the new Al bikes have a nice ride quality. My TCR has a pretty nice ride quality for one. I haven't riden a Dream+ other than around a parking lot but I sorely want to get one for the stable. Oh, Colnago's have a "crisp" quick handling quality.... I wouldn't call it twitchy unless you prefer none race geometry bikes.

Good luck!!!
Thanks for the tip on MaestroMe Dot Org
Nov 15, 2001 9:53 PM
I've bookmarked it and will check it out...
Thanks for the tip on MaestroCT1
Nov 15, 2001 10:13 PM
You have to follow a rather weird path but eventually you will find his pdf price list. Make sure you use the NON Euro column and also add 4% US customs and $125 for shipping.

Good luck ..... steel, Al, carbon, or ti/carbon ... their great bikes!

There is nothing to rent in Tuscany!NFM
Nov 16, 2001 6:16 AM