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Seven Frames(17 posts)

Seven Framesblownpupil
Jun 25, 2002 6:43 AM
I am considering going custom soon. Does anyone have personal experience with the Seven Axiom Ti, Seven Axiom Steel or Seven Alaris. I'm 6'0", 165 lbs, ride about 18-20 mph along hilly roads, and want a fast comfortable ride for 25-100 mile rides.
If no experience with the above, please suggest high end frame of your choice.
re: Seven Framesjtolleson
Jun 25, 2002 6:50 AM
I bought a Seven Axiom Ti and to date have put about 800 miles on it. I love it.

Seven says they'll build to the ride quality you want, and I think that mostly that's true, but I believe they built a much stiffer bike than I asked for (I'm a century riding, sport touring kinda gal). It isn't really a complaint, because the thing climbs EXTREMELY well and rockets when I go out of the saddle. Much better than my Litespeed. But there is no question that I didn't get all the vertical compliance I was anticipating, and on rough pavement I've been reminded a bit of aluminum. They built the thing with a very aggressive geometry, and it also isn't a very big bike, so that may be a factor.

If you want something more plush, I know they can build it... but you need to be very very emphatic about your desires. They may just have a tendency to build race rockets. But the thing responds and steers light years quicker than my old bike, so it is a tradeoff.
Ride qualityNessism
Jun 25, 2002 4:12 PM
I'm starting to sound like a broken record since I've made this statement so many times but...the tires and fork have a bigger influence on ride quality than the frame. For a light rider, 700x25 tires are the way to go. For the fork, the Look HSC1 and HSC2 are great for light riders - much more compliant than a Reynolds Ouzo Pro which is quite stiff.

Of course, after spending $350 on a fork, it's not that easy to just chuck it.

Good luck.

I knowjtolleson
Jun 25, 2002 6:15 PM
That's why I went with Mavic OPs/Dura Ace hubs instead of Ksyriums, and for Ride the Rockies I put on 25s. But it is still a pretty stiff ride. I do have the Ouzo Pro, and I have guessed that it is largely responsible for the feeling up front (both the good and bad).

Ah well.
Not shopping, but I'd be curious to hear moredjg
Jun 26, 2002 7:42 AM
about what exactly you told them and what you got. It sounds as though you received a very nice bike, and that you're basically happy with it, but that 7 failed to deliver on its promise (perhaps futile) of precisely tuning the ride to rider demands. If only a curiosity to me, it might actually be pretty helpful to people contemplating the purchase of a Seven frameset to see the kind of instructions that produced what you got.
Not shopping, but I'd be curious to hear morenelsonk
Jun 26, 2002 8:51 AM
Don't get me wrong, the workmanship is absolutely gorgeous. On a scale of 1-10 with 1 being the softest, I specified 3 for vertical compliance. For drivetrain stiffness, I asked for 9 with 10 being the stiffness. I also asked for longer chainstays to help smooth out the bumps in the road: 41.3cm vs. 41.0cm stock. I didn't expect the bike to ride like my old Klein. The bike feels like it was built more for a 185 lb person. I guess you can't have the best of both worlds. If you want comfort, I'd probably ask for 6-7 in drivetrain stiffness and 1 for vertical compliance. If I were to compare the ride to my columbus el/os bike, the ride is definitely harsher.
re: Seven Framestma
Jun 25, 2002 7:17 AM
This should get enough flames to weld you a frame or two.

Check out Serotta, they'll do the same sort of custom ride tuning as Seven. It's important, like the previous poster said, to make it clear what you're looking for in the ride. I don't think you can go much wrong with either, I test rode a Legend Ti before going lugged steel and it was like flying three feet off the ground. I sought crappy broken pavement and was amazed how it felt like it wasn't there. They turn on a dime with the Serotta fork in there, too, and even with my garbage riding skills I could sit up and pedal no hands.

As I say, I think both companies will do you right if you tell them what you like. If you have a shop you have a good relationship with already that may be the deciding factor.

I chose to go steel with the Serotta CSi mostly because of finances. I haven't been sorry.
Difference in Ride?bnlkid
Jun 25, 2002 10:56 AM
I have a CSI that I love, but am lusting after the Legend. Did you notice a significant difference in ride from the CSI?
Difference in Ride? - Yestma
Jun 25, 2002 11:42 AM
You definitely are more aware of the road you're on with the steel. I like that. I rode aluminum for years and the steel feels the road but doesn't fight it. It certainly doesn't beat you up at all. There's sort of some ineffable connection to the road.

The big variable is that I am riding 32-hole Open Pros with Axial Pro clinchers on my bike, and don't know what was on the trial. That's a big, big thing to remember. They throw high-zoot rims with sewups on there and you're hooked.

As a matter of fact, after a few thousand miles on these rims I can justify blowing the bankroll on some cool wheels with sewups and I think I'm going to do it.
with the same wheels, tires and tire pressure...ColnagoFE
Jun 25, 2002 12:11 PM
i doubt you could tell the difference between a csi and the legend other than slight weight penalty for steel. serotta tis are pretty heavy compared to other top brands anyway.
re: Seven FramesNo_sprint
Jun 25, 2002 9:16 AM
Calfee for carbon, Holland for Ti, Sachs for steel. Can't get any better than that.

Just as good would be Serotta for Ti, Parlee for carbon, Eisentraut or Steelman for steel, Huber for Scandium.
Custom FramesBikinBob
Jun 25, 2002 10:09 AM
I only have experience with a custom MTB frame. I have an Independant Fabrications Steel MTB frame and couldn't be happier. The BB is doesn't flex like my AL GT MTB, but it doesn't beat me up like the GT did. If I replace my old road bike with a custom rig, IF will probably be getting my order. I've spoken to other riders who have Indy road bikes, and they're very happy with them. I've heard good things about Waterford for another custom steel builder as well. Whomever you choose, make sure they know EXACTLY what you want. Work out the geometry, ride characteristics, material, your riding habits and waht you intend to do with the bike. Good luck and have fun.
Sounds more like a financial call.Leisure
Jun 25, 2002 2:21 PM
I would say any of them are likely to be good choices, and your lust to budget ratio should probably be the deciding factor. The very first Axiom steel I saw was last week, but it was way too big, dialed for a heavier rider, and already payed for so obviously I didn't test ride. Build quality was immaculate as usual; they don't seem to skimp out on their steel frames, so probably you have exactly the range of ride selection their catalogue says they do relative to the Axiom Ti. I think the Axiom has a little bit more ability to be tuned plusher than the Alaris and is mildly lighter. A lot of people go nuts over the Alaris being straight guage and therefore horribly inferior to the Axiom, but when you look at the numbers it's not that much different. If you have the opportunity to test ride any of the above ask about how its ride was ordered up as; most of the demo frames they send out are probably tuned as "signature series" things.
re: Seven FramesSantaCruz
Jun 25, 2002 3:22 PM
For long rides up to centuries, Carbon is hard to beat. I second the earlier recommendation for Calfee or Parlee. Look should also be a candidate.
re: Seven Framesstoutga
Jun 25, 2002 5:20 PM
I have 1500 miles on my TI Axiom. I am 6'1" 185lbs and ride 18-20 mph. I bought the Seven for the custom fit and love what they did. I was nervous about having to drop that amount of cash but now feel it was well worth the investment. Zac at Seven helped me dial in the ride characteristics I wanted and they delivered what I asked for. I was surprised how light the frame was compared to my Colnago OvalMaster. I would highly recommend finding a dealer that is VERY good at bike fits and has worked a lot with Seven.
re: Seven Framestirider
Jun 25, 2002 6:25 PM
I currently ride a Seven and have nothing but glowing accolades regarding the bike and the builder. I have spent less time with many a car purchase. To my mind if you are in the market for a custom bike there are however other factors that are just as important as picking the builder. First I think you should be confident in the specifics regarding the geometry and fit you need. While you can walk in cold and have a bike built to you, nothing can replace the knowledge that personal experience from years of riding and knowing what you want provides. I've found that my understanding of saddle and handlebar positioning as well as frame geometry preferences has evolved over the years. The next critical thing is the communication between you and the fitter. It's somewhat similar to picking an interior designer when it comes to the finished product. I chose Seven because of the local dealer in Seattle (John Gallagher at Bikefit) and less because of the brand. My previous bike was a Serotta (which I loved) but this bike is a closer incarnation of what I am looking for. I must admit however that the new Calfee Dragonfly Pro has caught my eye...hmmmmmmmm. One last thing, a custom isn't for everyone. You'll know it if you need one when you've become tired of bikes that aren't "just right" in the fit department. I think that's why generally you see those of us riding them that are well beyond our racing prime. Being uncomfortable becomes less of an option at some point in your life.
re: Seven Framesnelsonk
Jun 25, 2002 10:25 PM
I'm also 6' and 165 lbs and own a 59cm Seven Ti Axiom. As jtolleson posted earlier, the bike doesn't have the most compliant ride, however does climb like a rocket and is super stable descending. I rode the bike daily during my first 1 1/2 months of ownership and am now looking to sell it as I feel it rides to harsh for me. I prefer to take out my Ibis Spanky steel bike as the ride is much more plush. Maybe turning 40 has something to do with it. If you need more details about the bike, let me know.