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a q about steel road frames(11 posts)

a q about steel road framesmealex
Nov 17, 2002 9:34 AM
I was thinking about trying a steel road frame, and I know very little about the various manufacturers. I wonder if someone could give me a head start by suggesting a few frame manufacturers that offers a good balance of value and quality.

I was looking to spend around $1000.00(US) for the frame.

Rivendell's Atlantis or Rambouillet are pretty niceSilverback
Nov 17, 2002 10:04 AM
I've had an Atlantis for almost two years, and I haven't found one thing about it that I don't like. The Rambouillet is a "roadier" version of the same basic idea, but I've used the Atlantis for everything from fire trails to centuries with nothing but a tire swap, and it's perfect. See 'em at
Lemond Maillot Jeaune, not even $1K I bet. Cervelo Prodigy?NMSpunout
Nov 17, 2002 5:40 PM
re: a q about steel road framesHeron Todd
Nov 17, 2002 10:07 AM
What type of riding will you do? Our Herons are priced in that ballpark, but I need to know more about what you are looking for to tell you if they are for you.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776
Yeah, I should have mentioned Heron, tooSilverback
Nov 17, 2002 10:12 AM
That was the last frame I ruled out before I decided on the Atlantis. Main reason was that I needed a big frame and there was a supply problem at the time. Nice bikes, though.
Check . . .Look381i
Nov 17, 2002 11:57 AM
Gary Hobbs usually has some nice steel options at good prices, including Pinarello, Viner, Cinelli, Landshark and Colnago. He will build the frame up as you please, if you need.
I second thatvindicator
Nov 18, 2002 8:56 AM
I got my new steel Viner "Competition" from him, and I love it. He was very easy to deal with, as well. Your price range is a bit higher than mine was, so in the Viners you might be able to swing one of their top of the line EOM 16.5 steel frames. And as mentioned, he's also got Landshark, Pinarello, etc.

Nov 17, 2002 6:34 PM
check out the SR 525

TONS of good builders out there, though. Be sure to ask around locally, too.
re: a q about steel road framessprockets2
Nov 17, 2002 7:40 PM
Decide what kind of frame that you want and then begin to look around. Search the archives here.

A poster mentioned the Rivendell bikes, which are nice but in your price area they are very much touring-type geometries and are not cutting edge in metallurgy either.

If you are going steel-a move that I think is great as I have a stable of steel bikes-I would counsel you to only get the best steel that you can (853, UFoco, EOM 16.5). Perhaps this is not a great attitude, but otherwise why bother spending all of that $. Only the best steels come close to the weight/performance/value of the other materials used in frames. You can find a slew of European frames with nice detailing, great pedigree, and less-than-top-of-the-line steel. Bikes of yesteryear. Nice, but why not go all of the way and get the better metal?

I have a Gunnar (welded tube wing of the venerable Waterford (Schwinn Paramount, etc.)). It is a super bike. People on this site seem to prefer some of the really small builders, but I find that there is much to be said for a larger builder with many, many bikes to their credit.

Look around, find the bike that speaks to you.
re: a q about steel road framesmealex
Nov 17, 2002 8:47 PM
thank you for the advice.........which "large builders" would you recommend that i have a look at?

thanks again
re: a q about steel road framesHeron Todd
Nov 18, 2002 11:34 AM
>A poster mentioned the Rivendell bikes, which are nice but in your price area they are very much touring-type geometries and are not cutting edge in metallurgy either.

If by "Rivendell bikes" you mean Atlantis, Rambouillet, and Heron, you are correct in stating that you won't find a bike with crit geometry. However, the Heron Road is fairly quick handling bike. The Heron Touring is, of course, touring oriented, but the Atlantis and Rambouillet slot between the 2 Herons quite nicely.

I'm not sure what you mean by "cutting edge in metallurgy." All of these bikes use pretty modern cromoly tubing. They don't, however, use any of the newer super-steels like 853, and there is a reason for this. The super steels are stronger than cromoly, but not stiffer. So, you can make a lighter frame with them by using thinner-walled tubing, and the strength will still be sufficient. However, a frame built with thinner-walled tubing will be more flexible regardless of which steel you use. This may be OK for a racing bike where you have a rider that weighs less than 160 pounds and doesn't carry any gear. The Atlantis, Rambouillet, and Herons are designed to be multipurpose. They will handle a larger rider and/or additional gear.

They use a thicker-walled tubing to prevent tracking, handling, and high-speed shimmy problems with a heavier load. Once you use a thicker-walled tube, you already have more than enough strength with regular cromoly. So, while you could use a super-steel in this application, the only real difference to the rider will be that it costs more.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776