Frame Material: 3Al/2.5V titanium Frame Angles: 73.0 head, 73.0 seat Sizes: 49cm, 51cm, 53cm, 55cm, 57cm, 59cm, 61cm Colors: Brushed Fork: Lite TEC Rear Shock: Not applicable Brake Levers: Shimano Ultegra STI Dual Control Handlebar: ITM Mantjs Super Over Stem: ITM Mantjs Super Over Headset: 1 1/8" threadless Cane Creek Front Der: Shimano Ultegra Crankset: Shimano Ultegra, 39/53 teeth Rear Der: Shimano Ultegra SS Pedals: Not applicable Tires: 700 x 23c Vittoria Rubino Pro
Similar Products Used: Other metal frame bikes, Viscount, Cannondale, Bianchi, Surly.
Bike Setup: Ultegra double 10 speed.
a Recreational Rider
Date Reviewed: April 30, 2010
Strengths: Easy to maintain finish.Practically bullet proof Ultegra components. This bike has given me very little trouble and is ridden hard and often.
Weaknesses: Real Design wheels.
The spokes cannot be adjusted with the tires installed. The carbon "Fairings" Are really just window dressing and not structural. They need to be fitted with tubes with extremely long valve stems.Forget about borrowing a tube from your buddy.
Nice bike. I always wanted to get a titanium bike and finally have one.
Bike Setup: Box stock except for a WTB road saddle.
Date Reviewed: September 24, 2006
Strengths: Superb titanium frame, decent weight even with mid-level parts. Swap out lighter wheels, bars/stem and seat and you have a 16.5-pound bike that is extraordinarily comfortable and quick. Polished titanium looks bad-ass. With black ksyriums, this bike gets stares from everyone else out there. Another great thing is Litespeed resale value: a used Solano is always going to be at least $1800, and probably more.
Weaknesses: Very hard to find a new one anymore. They are almost gone. Other than that, not much. The wheels (Real Design Supersonic) are a tad heavy (but they are ok nonetheless). Swap for Ksyriums and knock off some weight without sacrificing comfort. Also, the handlebars are comical at first - huge oversize with this gigantic ITM Super Over stem. Ultimately this adds to the comfort, but it looks/feels weird at first.
The Solano is like the BMW 7-series of road bikes. Think of the higher-end Vortex as a Porsche - a bit rough, super responsive, a little twitchy, but a great handler and a very fast ride. But I already have a no-compromise racing bike to rattle my teeth when I feel the need. I was looking for a long-distance sport/trainer/century rider that would be comfortable yet also high quality and quick. Titanium is the perfect frame material because it is smooth, responsive, lively yet not at all jarring. The Solano is the perfect combination of comfort and performance. It is extraordinarily smooth, stable, supple and comfortable. Yet it is also relatively light (could be lighter with different wheels, stem/bars and seat), very responsive, and has a geometry that is comfortable for long rides. This bike is incredibly fast over a long period. It is not perfect at any one thing - rather, it's "almost perfect" at everything. Great climber, sprinter, flat-roader. Absorbs strips/ bumps/ potholes easily and comfortably. The radical shaped stays are very noticeable for comfort. I might even try racing this bike - it is that fast. If you can still find a new one, buy it and don't hesitate. You will not regret it.
Similar Products Used: This is my first ti bike so I really can't compare it to anything I've owned. The closest I suppose would be a '95 Derosa SLX (sold a few years ago, oh well!) or my Calborn Formula 1. Close but no cigar.
Bike Setup: Ultegra 10; FSA K-Force 50/34 crank; ITM stem and bars; Selle Italia Gelflow Flite saddle; Ultegra/Open Pro wheels.
Strengths: The perfect blend of stiffness and compliance, really! Has the famous Titanium ride quality. Beautiful build quality! Last forever material. Non integrated head tube is a BIG plus in my opinion! Truly an American (hand) Made product! Pro grade.
Weaknesses: Expensive, it is a Litespeed! It has no other weakness that I can think of! You get what you pay for here! Does make you feel a little unworthy at times, though! "Pedal harder, you lazy couch potato!!!", it screamed to me a few times. Although it does that less and less, these days.
This is the best value in Litespeeds lineup in terms of performance and value. This frame is extremely easy to absolutely fall in love with and never wish for anything else. The Solano suits me perfectly in terms of ride quality, doesn't beat you up. Climbs excellent and decends with an extreme sureness at high speed. Never feels noodley or twitchy.
I am looking at 2 different used model Litespeeds. One is a 2005 Solano and the other is a 2006 Tuscany. Anyone know the difference in these models. I have ridden the Tuscany, its local and the Solano is on ebay. I will be building the bike I choose from the frame up so their current components don' ... Read More »
Hello all... I found a fully built new old stock Solano at my local shop... they're asking $1999 for it complete, but I've asked them to give me a price on the frame/fork/headset alone. haven't got the call back yet but I'm wondering what I should be looking at for decent pricing on a frame like thi ... Read More »
So I decided to get my wife a bike for Christmas. She is not going to race or anything, just sometimes ride with me. I have a policy of not getting people gifts that I would not think good enough for myself, so I want to get her something decent.
What do you think of this? Is there something I sh ... Read More »
I have been mt. biking forever my wife has drug me into this whole road game. I have been riding my 30 year old Windsor. It is now time for a new bike. I am 6' 2" with a 36" inseam. I rode a 58cm. Specialized. It seems faster but after 2 and a half hours on the bike I feel like I have been on a bike ... Read More »