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American or Italian Steel?(14 posts)

American or Italian Steel?RCole
Jan 26, 2003 9:43 PM
Thinking of buying a second bike and was originally going to purchase an Independent Fab - Crown Jewel. Went to the coffee shop this morning with the wife and kids and noticed a nice looking but retro Cinelli Super Corsa. It got me thinking. GVH has the Super Corsa at a great price. If price was similar. Which would you recommend? FYI - My current ride is a 2002 Litespeed Ultimate.

Both are nice bikes...rwbadley
Jan 26, 2003 10:07 PM
I think I would research a little further and decide what I wanted, as these are rather different frames.

It is possible to find an American frame built to extremely high standards, I think that would be my first choice. Are you looking for new? Do you want custom sizing? What area of the country are you in? Are there any local framebuilders that need your business?

Some of the best steel frames (if that's what you're looking for) are from US builders. The Crown Jewel being one of many. Many sites are devoted to info on these builders, check 'em out.

re: American or Italian Steel?desmo
Jan 26, 2003 10:39 PM
Get both. American builder using Columbus tubes.
Time for something different...hycobob
Jan 26, 2003 10:53 PM
You already have a lusty enough main ride. Try a steel fixed gear or single speed. That way you won't feel the need to justify the 2nd bike. They're 2 totally different types of riding. Or have you thought of getting a hardtail mountain bike and dabbling in the dark side. Or how about a tandem...last year on the Houston to Austin MS-150 I saw a 4 person (tandem?) bike. I don't know what to call it except long and fast, even uphill.
Lugged Neuron is a great ride . . .Look381i
Jan 27, 2003 3:35 AM
My Guerciotti is lugged Neuron. I have been riding carbon for most of the past six months. I was on my Guerciotti yesterday and was reminded what a light, lively feel it has. Built up with Chorus and Ksyriums, mine comes in at 18 pounds and small change.

The Cinelli must be a lot less expensive than the IF, eh?
Italian Steel frame is likely made in Taiwan - if it mattersphil the wheel
Jan 27, 2003 4:09 AM
VERY common for almost every 'Italian' maker to buy unfinished frames in Taiwan - ship to Italy and paint and decal. This may or may not matter to you - as you can not know on any given frame
My Tommasini Techno was made in Italygreg n
Jan 27, 2003 7:40 AM
At least that's what the decals and paperwork say.
specifics? i don't believe itColnagoFE
Jan 28, 2003 9:42 AM
i'd believe that taiwan makes most of the "italian" TI frames but not the steel. Colnago definately makes their own steel frames out of italian steel. pretty sure most of the other big names do as well. not so confident about the ti bikes though. those may be outsourced.
6 of one...mass_biker
Jan 27, 2003 4:53 AM
Can't go wrong with either, but be aware of the very real differences in ride characteristics.

IF Crown Jewel - longish TT relative to size.
Cinelli - more or less "square" dimensions.

Had an IF Crown Jewel once and found that it was not a great riding/racing bike, although the construction quality was superb. The Cinelli SuperCorsas I see today are a far cry (qualitywise) from those of old, but still nothing to sneeze at.

If I had my druthers I'd get the Cinelli and build it up as a fixed gear. Save some $ and it would be a way sweet fixed gear ride. Something about lugs and track grouppos...

belgian. nmJS Haiku Shop
Jan 27, 2003 5:36 AM
re: American or Italian Steel?RCole
Jan 27, 2003 8:10 PM
Thanks everyone. I agree that they are different. If only I could find them to test ride. Live in So. Cal but there aren't many shops that carry either of these. Great suggestions though. Thank god time is on my side but this bike thing is an addiction!
re: American or Italian Steel?Heron Todd
Jan 28, 2003 9:30 AM
There is no universal truth here as geometry and quality will vary from company to company more than country to country. However, some European brands often don't have the same level of finish as some of the American builders. They leave frame prep and alignment to the bike shop. Torelli has their frames brazed in Italy but prepped, aligned, and painted in the US to ensure top quality. If you have a good shop that can do all of the finish work for you, this isn't as big a deal.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776
all bikes should be prepped anywayColnagoFE
Jan 28, 2003 9:44 AM
including american made bikes so i think that is a moot point. if you assume your american made bike doesn't need to have the bb shell chased and chaecked for alignment i think you are asking for trouble.
all bikes should be prepped anywayHeron Todd
Jan 28, 2003 2:12 PM
>if you assume your american made bike doesn't need to have the bb shell chased and chaecked for alignment i think you are asking for trouble.

I agree, but I have seen lots of complete bikes with frames that weren't prepped properly. These were either sold via mail order or from shops that didn't bother to prep them. From working with a lot of different framebuilders, I'd say that the Americans are better at this than the Europeans. However, you are correct in saying that you should have ANY frame properly checked out before building it.

Todd Kuzma
Heron Bicycles
Tullio's Big Dog Cyclery
LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776