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Custom bike frames - inexpensive(5 posts)

Custom bike frames - inexpensiveohio
Oct 1, 2003 5:04 PM
Hi everyone,

I'm crossposting this from MTBR, but please bear with me. This is a 3 question (SHORT) market survey to gather some opinions on a potential venture. Please note that this is A CONCEPT, and the frames will not be available for quite some time even if we choose to pursue it. With that said, here's the deal:

These custom frames would cover every double-diamond frame application from 20" BMX to burly hardtail to XC hardtail to road to touring. Estimated cost for a steel road frame would be around $400 (yes, $400 for a full custom - tailored geometry, tube spec, and small features) unpainted, depending on the tubeset choice. Aluminum and titanium would be available at similar discounts over standard custom shop prices.

The process would involve plenty of input from and interaction with the customer, but final exact specifications would be completed by an expert in ergonomics and design. Delivery times could be as short as 2.5 weeks after deposit vs. 6 weeks for the fastest of existing custom shops.

Please just copy and paste into an email to customframes@dartmouth.edu . Feel free to add comments to your responses, but try to make them yes or no.

1. If you OWN or will own a custom frame:
A. I would only purchase from a small established shop at a premium price
B. I would consider buying one from a non-established builder at a considerably lower price

2. If you DO NOT OWN or plan to own a custom frame.
A. At a very discounted price I would consider one
B. Even at a very discounted price would not consider one

3. The importance of premium tubesets?
A. It is important to me that the tubing is highly reputable, such as Easton Ultralight, Columbus Nivacrom, Reynolds 853, or Sandvik Ti
B. I would be willing to accept proprietary unlabelled tubesets, as long as the performance equalled or exceeded the brand name tubes.
C. I would be willing to sacrifice some performance, as long as I still could get a custom frame at a very low price.

Anyway, thanks so much to all who respond.
I'll take a "shot" at it....Lone Gunman
Oct 1, 2003 5:47 PM
Q1. I fit "off the rack" and customize with stem and saddle position, no need for a custom frame.

Q2. See answer 1, warranty begins to play a factor on this in my line of thinking, will the builder last or back product? Discount will not help me in the event of frame failure.

Q3. Answer A, 100%, plus the geometry and the appearance of the welds and finish.
marinoniFrith
Oct 1, 2003 6:28 PM
if you don't want to spend alot, Why settle for a non-premium tubeset or sub-par welds? If I wanted a custom (or standard geo) steel bike at good price hand built by an Italian craftsman who's been doing it for a lifetime I'd look no further.
beat me to it! nmThe The
Oct 1, 2003 7:34 PM
marinoniohio
Oct 2, 2003 2:10 PM
The bikes certainly wouldn't have sub-par welds. Indy Fab is our benchmark for quality.

As for the tubeset options, that's why we're conducting the survey... to find out if performance alone is the distinguishing factor, or whether a fancy sticker and the associated warm fuzzy feeling is worth a price premium.