RoadBikeReview.com's Forum Archives - General


Archive Home >> General(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 )


tell me about your Colnago MXL(17 posts)

tell me about your Colnago MXLtarwheel
Oct 3, 2002 5:09 AM
Since I've had zero luck located an Eddy Merckx steel frame in my size (56), I'm investigating other options. A Colnago Master X Light in size 58 would fit about the same as a 56 Merckx. I've tended not to follow Colnagos too closely because of the snob factor, the expense, and the paint jobs (which I'm not really sure are my style but they do have lots of options). But the geometry and sizing are just right for me, and an MXL would actually cost less than most custom steel frames. I do not race, and I'm more interested in fit and comfort than speed, stiffness and ultralight weight. So here are my questions:

-- About how much does an MXL weigh for frame and fork (steel Precisa)?
-- Which fork would ride more comfortably (less harsh) -- the steel Precisa or Flash (carbon)?
-- How is the ride comfort-wise? I know Colnagos have a reputation for performance and handling, but I don't want a harsh riding frame.
-- Would it be sacrilege to build up an MXL with an Ultegra group (which I already have)?
-- Being truly objective, would the MXL provide a more comfortable ride than the aluminum Dream Plus, assuming you used the same forks on both frames?
-- How do the paint jobs and chrome hold up on newer Colnagos? (Although some people claim Italian paint jobs suck, my Gios and Bianch have both held up great.)
-- Is this the kind of bike you could ride day in and day out, particularly on longer rides?
re: tell me about your Colnago MXLmhinman
Oct 3, 2002 6:16 AM
-My 60cm MXL frame weighed 3 lbs, 14 oz (1760g) and the Flash fork wights 623g (uncut)
-I have the Flash fork so I cannot compare to the Precisa.
-I am 6'1" and 195 lbs, and for me, I find the ride quality outstanding. Very stiff in the BB, yet comfortable in the saddle.
-I have 1500 miles on the bike, and so far the paint is holding up well.
-I have Campy Neutron wheels, Record triple grouppo, Chorus Ti seatpost and ITM Millenium stem/bar.
-For about the price Ultegra you could get the Centaur grouppo, but to each his own.
-I commute and ride this bike on the weekend and it is a very good and solid day to day bike, focused on durability not weight.
answers?ColnagoFE
Oct 3, 2002 6:28 AM
not sure with the steel fork but the frame is prolly about 4 lbs. if you're a weight weenie you might not want to consider this bike. it's not the lightest...just the best riding bike I've ever had. Not harsh for me, but pretty stiff--then again I ride a 62cm frame and weigh around 200 so YMMV. You could build with Ultegra (though I wouldn't as I'm a campy person). I dont think you can compare the Dream with the MXL...they are pretty different bikes. I'd say the dream would make a nicer racing bike, but the MXL would have the edge ride-wise. I've had mine for 3 years no problems with paint or chrome. This is the perfect bike to ride on longer rides IMO. Not the best choice if all you do is race (due to weight concerns), but I've raced it as well and it works fine.
MXL - the straight dopemass_biker
Oct 3, 2002 6:33 AM
I've had my MXL for around 7000 miles. I train and race on it. This 58cm gem is built up with the carbon Flash fork, DA, and CXP33s laced to Hope hubs. Nothing super duper trick. But to answer your specific questions:

- Weight is 19lbs +/-. Lighter with my Open Pro wheels
- I love the Flash fork - very absorbent where it counts
- Very comfortable. Super stiff in the bottom bracket (great for out of the saddle efforts), handles like it's on rails, and stable on the descents (regularly clock 60mph+ on downhills in the White Mtns. of NH). I am light (<150lbs) and went with the stiffer MXL (over the Technos) for durability - it does not beat me up in the least
- Don't worry about the grouppo. I actually think MXLs look neato with Shimano
- I went from a TCR (al.) to a MXL (steel) and found it to be a huge gain in comfort. Yes, it is a little heavier, but for the training and racing we do in New England, I much prefer the stability and predictability of my 'Nago. My sole concession to light weight was the choice of fork
- The paint job holds up fine. A few nicks here and there from usual road debris, but the stuff is glopped on nice and thick and stays there
- This is my day in/day out bike. Until the snow melts, I do use my winter beater, which is a steel Surly. However, between training, racing, the MXL gets the most use. Longer rides are a joy- it doesn't beat you up at all, and has plenty of get up and go for those contentious town line sprints

The snob factor was nonexistent in my decision. It is simply one of the best made, and more importantly, best riding steel bikes around. I've ridden/raced Serottas, IFs, and my share of non-ferrous wonders (Dales, TCRs, the old Giant CADEX too), and this one takes the cake. Nothing jaw-droppingly-innovative, but stuff that works, takes a beating, and comes out the next day to work again. The MXL is not the lightest bike out there, but it is super burly, super comfortable, and frankly, "rides" a whole lot lighter than it actually is. I hope to be riding and racing mine for many years to come. A lugged steel bike in an age of throwaway bikes-for-a-season? Why, yes.

MB
MXL - the straight dopeDINOSAUR
Oct 3, 2002 8:34 AM
I agree with everything mass_biker said about the Master X-Light. I have a 2002 MXL, flash fork, Campy Chorus Record mix, OP wheelset. I've been riding bikes since the 70's and this is the sweetest riding bike I've ever ridden. It is not harsh riding, the steel has a magic, springy feel to it.
I love the paint, I have a LX-23 Robobank art deco. The paint is very durable, much more than the paint on my '99 Klein QR. I was all set to buy a custom steel bike and I asked the owner of my LBS ( a Colnago dealer) if he would cut me a deal on a Colnago. He did (28%), built it with my input, no charge for a fitting and building and a money back garantee that if I did not love this bike he would return my money. Since I bought this bike back in the beginning of May I've logged on over 3K miles and the Klein stays hanging in my garage. The only downside is the TT length on the larger size Nago's. Ernesto believes that a short TT aids to the bikes stabiltiy and extends the TT by a longer stem length. This was one of my criteria as I have short torso for my hieght and a 59 cm MXL with a 56.9 cm TT fits me like a dream. These bikes were made for riding long distance without rider fatique and beating the crap out of you. Some say the Colnago does their best work with steel as they have been making them for so long and have it down to a science. I can't tell you how much I love my MXL, I've never heard anyone complain about the ride of a MXL. The snob factor for me was in reverse, for some reason I notice that when I ride my Nago I don't get as many people waving at me when I ride the Klein. Maybe they think I'm a snob. I'm not, I'm just and old guy who knows what he likes. Also Colnago has a lot of different paint schemes. But when I'm riding, I'm not thinking about the paint, I'm thinking about the ride. The big question is fit, like all frames. If it don't fit you must acquit.. If you have any questions about the MXL, feel free to email me at edijul@foothill.net I will be glad to help you.

P.S.
I went with Campy Chorus because of the price my LBS threw at me, $999.00 for Chorus/Mavic OP/Thomson seat post/Sella Italia Gel Flite...threw on a Deda Newton stem for no extra charge...Dura Ace would work also...the frame is the heart of the bicycle..
your bike shop must like you ...tarwheel
Oct 3, 2002 8:55 AM
I wish I could get that sort of deal where I live. I am considering buying my frame from maestro-uk because it's so much less expensive. The nearest Colnago dealer to me is a fairly long drive through a lot of traffic. It's a great bike shop and I know the owner, but I don't think they would cut me any deals like that. I just plain, flat-out could not afford to spend the $1,500 that bikes shops charge for MXLs around here.

I am not really concerned about the "snob" factor, but I've just never pictured myself as a Colnago guy. You see very few of them where I live (NC), and the ones you see tend to be very expensive models w/ Record groups. The Colnago paint jobs can be a little over the top, although I have to admit they look much better in person than in the photos you see on website or in magazines. I drive a red Ford Ranger pickup and rode a 15-year-old Bianchi until last year. My other bike is a Gios, which has a very classic appearance. So, I can just hear all my riding buddies if I showed up one day with a Colnago GEO ... "Ooh, look at Mr. Poseur with his fancy Colnago ..." But, hey, a Colnago would fit me better than just about any stock bike and that's what's important.
your bike shop must like you ...DINOSAUR
Oct 3, 2002 12:01 PM
Yes, I'm lucky. I belong to a cycling club that receives 10% discounts on non-sale items in my LBS. I happened to walk by the owner about a year ago while shopping in the store and asked him if the discount applied to bikes and he said no, but he could work around it, and when it came time for me to buy a new bike to come to him personally. I did, and was set to test ride his Mendonico Foco but it was raining and I said I've always lusted over a Master X-Light. He arranged for a before hours fitting in his shop and we picked the component group. We were are the same waive length as he loves Italian steel and Campy. I've been doing business with this shop since 1990. I guess it proves that it pays to do business with your LBS, they do remember who you are.

Go with the Flash fork. It will enhance the ride quailty. The Flash fork and the steel frame are a perfect match. I thought about the Precisa fork, but I was swayed toward the carbon. You will love this bike. I rode mine virgin with no test ride and just going on input from what I've read about the MXL's. I loved it from the start and the more I ride it the more I love it.....forget about looking like a poseur, hell we are all poseurs..
Dino
MXL is the perfect bike if comfort and fit are your goals.MXL02
Oct 3, 2002 6:41 AM
>I'm more interested in fit and comfort than speed, stiffness and ultralight weight.

i you have answered your own question with this comment. The MXL is the perfect bike if fit and comfort are your main goals. I rode mine on a century Saturday, and I couldn't keep from smiling because it was so fine every inch of the way.

>-- About how much does an MXL weigh for frame and fork (steel Precisa)?

i Don't know but plenty light if comfort and fit are your main goals and you are not going to race...definitely 19lbs or less.

>-- Which fork would ride more comfortably (less harsh) -- the steel Precisa or Flash (carbon)?

i I have a Force carbon and it rides wonderfully, but I really don't know if it makes that much of a difference.
>-- How is the ride comfort-wise? I know Colnagos have a reputation for performance and handling, but I don't want a harsh riding frame.

i See above.
>-- Would it be sacrilege to build up an MXL with an Ultegra group (which I already have)?

i No
>-- Being truly objective, would the MXL provide a more comfortable ride than the aluminum Dream Plus, assuming you used the same forks on both frames?

i No question...the dream plus is an aluminum racing bike built for lightness and speed. No comparison to the MXL.
>-- How do the paint jobs and chrome hold up on newer Colnagos? (Although some people claim Italian paint jobs suck, my Gios and Bianch have both held up great.)

i Mine is less than a year old but so far no problems.
>-- Is this the kind of bike you could ride day in and day out, particularly on longer rides?

i Yes! See above.
re: tell me about your Colnago MXLJohnG
Oct 3, 2002 6:45 AM
My 54cm MXL was VERY stiff and fairly harsh riding. I'm only 150# so maybe that had something to do with the rough ride quality. The frame is recommended for heavier riders. This frame is best suited for weekend club rides.

FWIW, my brother had a 58cm MXL and he liked it........ although he also sold it after about 6 months. It's a good "classic" frame ....... perhaps a tad heavy but not a total tank. My brother now has a 58cm Dream plus and he says it's just as nice riding as his MXL was but it's a lot lighter. My daily riding partner also has a Dream plus and he raves about the good riding quality of the bike.

IMHO, unless you're hung up on the "steel is real" deal you really should check out the Dream plus or CT1........ both better frames, again IMHO.

Paint and chrome work on the newer Colnagos is GREAT!!!!

JohnG
a little more infotarwheel
Oct 3, 2002 7:17 AM
Thanks for the feedback. Here's a little more info on my situation. I am 5'11" and weigh about 185-190. I am definitely more interested in comfort, as my hands are particularly susceptible to numbness -- hence my questions about the fork. I've been told the steel Precisa would be more comfortable riding than the carbon Flash. I also can buy a Precisa fork that is threaded, which I prefer over threadless.

I actually have a Campy Chorus 10 group on another bike, my Gios. I would be buying the Master frame to replace an old Bianchi frame that is just too large and relatively heavy. The Bianchi has a full Ultegra group with Open Pro wheels, so the simplest option would be to swap components from that frame (which will cost me about $100 labor at the bike shop). If I installed the Chorus group on the Master, my labor costs would double because I would then have to swap the components from the Gios as well as the Bianchi. I also would prefer to have the Ultegra group on the bike I ride the most because the Campy maintenance costs are so high -- those $35 chains and $80 cassettes are too expensive.
Technos rider here . . .Geardaddy
Oct 3, 2002 7:18 AM
... which is very close to the MXL I hear.

-- About how much does an MXL weigh for frame and fork (steel Precisa)?

Not sure. I tried finding how much the Precisa fork weighed once, but couldn't find it.

-- Which fork would ride more comfortably (less harsh) -- the steel Precisa or Flash (carbon)?

I have the Precisa, and it is not harsh at all. I have considered upgrading to the Flash Fork, but then I ask myself "why?". I really don't have an issue with the weight, and I'm perfectly happy with the ride quality.

-- How is the ride comfort-wise? I know Colnagos have a reputation for performance and handling, but I don't want a harsh riding frame.

Beautiful! Like butter! I'm 5'9" and weigh 160, and I definitely prefer the Colnago shorter TT geometry. I was a bit leary that the bike would be too stiff, but those fears were alleviated the first time I rode it.

-- Would it be sacrilege to build up an MXL with an Ultegra group (which I already have)?

Well, if you've already got it - OK. I am running Chorus/Record. I'd rather use Centaur than Ultegra if I had that choice.

-- How do the paint jobs and chrome hold up on newer Colnagos? (Although some people claim Italian paint jobs suck, my Gios and Bianch have both held up great.)

The paint job is pretty resilient. No complaints.

-- Is this the kind of bike you could ride day in and day out, particularly on longer rides?

I end up riding it to work instead of my commuter because it's such a joy to experience its smooooth ride. I've had it for over a year (bought it used) and put about 5000 miles on it. Long or short rides, it doesn't matter - feels great.
re: tell me about your Colnago MXLterry b
Oct 3, 2002 8:29 AM
About how much does an MXL weigh for frame and fork (
-I have the flash fork, but my 57cm bike weighs about 19 lbs with Chorus gruppo and Electron wheels.

Which fork would ride more comfortably (less harsh) -- the steel Precisa or Flash (carbon)?
-Don't know, but my guess would be the Flash which is why I chose it.

How is the ride comfort-wise?
-I find it to be extremely solid and smooth. Very Comfortable. I'm 5'11" and I weigh 175.

Would it be sacrilege to build up an MXL with an Ultegra group (which I already have)?
-You'll be fine unless Italian GQ finds out in which case they will probably publish an unflattering article about you.

Being truly objective, would the MXL provide a more comfortable ride than the aluminum Dream Plus, assuming you used the same forks on both frames?
-Who knows, listening to this forum, steel is always smoother than aluminum.

How do the paint jobs and chrome hold up on newer Colnagos?
-2 years riding it year around and 3000 miles and it looks as beautiful as the day I bought it. I have schema AD20 which is one of the more subtle choices.

Is this the kind of bike you could ride day in and day out, particularly on longer rides?
-Yes, and I do it all the time. It's a nice, solid, smooth, inflexible comfortable bike. I'd be judicious about your choice of sizes though - I found it to be a bit harder to dial in due to the slack HT angle, at least in comparison to my other (steeper) bikes. Had a bit of a problem with hand numbness that I cleared up with adjustments. If I was doing it again, I'd probably go with a 58 instead of my 57.
I ride a MasterWalter
Oct 3, 2002 11:45 AM
Not the XL but the generation just before with the Profilo S4 tubing. Picked it up NOS not long ago and set it up with a mostly NOS Record/Chorus 8 group and OP rims. It does have the Precisa fork.

I'm a little taller and a bit (or more) heavier than you and I thoroughly enjoy the ride. I don't know the weight, 20# maybe but the bike rides beautifully. Also it's in a classic red/white combo that you can't get anymore. I've read your other posts about a Merckx but I don't think you can go wrong with the MXL.
re: tell me about your Colnago MXLflying
Oct 3, 2002 9:29 PM
Mine weighs 1940 grams with a Chorus BB & headset cups.
So figure 1690 grams without those. Lighter than advertised 1800 weight.
Mine is a 55 c-t
I use the Flash carbon/alum steerer fork. 605 grams cut

Ride comfort is as other have said excellent.
Use what components you like.
It would be way more comfy than a Dream but then it should be.
Paint holds up very well & is done flawlessly.
You can ride it daily I did till I bought my Look 381i

There in is your biggest Q

You do realize this MXL versus the Merckx you wanted are very different geometry wise right?
Sizing question?Justride
Oct 3, 2002 9:39 PM
I am curious about your statement that you need a 56cm Merckx
and a 58cm colnago. Is the Merckx c/c and the Colnago c/t or are their geometries so different. What is your inseam in cm?
I am also searching for an MX Leader in need of restoration and would value your sizing comparison. I have an 87cm inseam and am riding a 59cm c/t steel frame that fits me very well.
yup Colnago c-t & Merckx c-c (nm)flying
Oct 3, 2002 11:19 PM
Colnago vs. Merckx sizingtarwheel
Oct 4, 2002 6:21 AM
In my size, a Colnago is fairly close to a Merckx in fit and geometry. Colnagos are measured center-top, Merckx center-center. So a 58 Colnago is about the same size as a 56 Merckx. Geometry wise, they are very similar. In my size, both have 73 seat tube angles (OK, the Merckx is 72.9). The Colnago top tube is slightly longer, 56.3 compared to 56 on the Merkckx. However, the Colnago has a slacker head tube angle (72.2), so it angles back toward the ride more -- effectively shortening the top tube some -- so they are pretty close in that respect as well. The primary difference is that I believe the Merckx has a slightly longer chainstay.