Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
ab aeterno
Joined
·
3,395 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking about getting a custom steel frame built. I know there is IF , steelman, Teesdale. Any other builders? Who makes the lightest steel frame? Biggest bang for the buck? (I know this is subjective)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,354 Posts
run a search, we've discussed specifics on several occasions. Sycip and Hottubes are some others for example.

bang for the buck is likely Curtlo. Wait time can be an issue.

Weight: tube selection will be a major determinate of frame weight. A good builder will help you choose the best tubes for your frame, giving you a light frame relative to your needs.
S3 tubing for example is one of the lightest tubesets on the market right now, but it's frequently inappropriate for use in a cyclocross frame (depending on rider weight, rigidity, durability).
 

·
Cross Bike Collector.....
Joined
·
1,144 Posts
custom Steel Crossers

Well, I have two and Mom has one. Strong, Indy Fab, and Curtlo. Obviously the Curtlo was the least expensive. IMHO the Strong was the best quality, subjective, yes. But then again isn't everything on this forum? Another great custom choice for cross is Rock Lobster and Gunnar. Here's a link of just about all the custom steel builders, plus Alum, Ti and Carbon. Now if it was me, and I had the dough and the patience to wait 18 months. It would be a Vanilla. Paul builds some nice bikes @ rock lobster. Also, Mike DeSalvo builds some nice steel cross bikes too. Do your home work, tons of really great builders and steel is very affordable.
http://www.velonews.com/tech/report/articles/7605.0.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,627 Posts
Mike Zanconato in Mass. makes some nice custom CX bikes. (www.zanconato.com) Zanc also races CX as part of this Hup United group (www.hupunited.com). I'd be curious to know how many custom CX builders actually race their own bikes.

But if you are in Wisconsin, you might want to visit Waterford or Desperado Cycles. I think the best part of the custom process is meeting with and getting fit by the builder.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Other options

I've just gone through the same process you're asking about. A couple of great resources to check out are www.bikelugs.com and www.handmadebicycleshow.com. Both provide links to a whole slew of builders, which, in some ways can make your decison far more complicated.

I've got two 'cross bikes ordered. One with Sacha White at Vanilla in Portland, Oregon, and one with Chris Bull at Circle A Cycles in Providence, Rhode Island. Both builders have been great to work with. They've got a great handle on what they're doing, they've been very up front about pricing and realistic time frames, and they've been very patient with me while I've been him-hawing about and losing sleep over deciding how many, if any, water bottle bosses I want and what-not.

As far as weight goes, Jeremy (Plus One Lap) can attest to this perhaps more than any of us, but much of it will determine what you hang on the frame. I know Vanilla can build a steel frame for a geared cyclo-cross bike that, when fully built up, can tip the scales at under 18 pounds. I'm confident other builders can do the same.

Another builder you may want to consider is Ira Ryan in Portland, Oregon. He's created some beautiful bikes that are displayed on his website. I've been in contact with him. His wait time is a bit less than Circle A, Vanilla, and many other builders, and he seems like a really reasonable person to work with. I can't comment on how light his 'cross frames are.

I'm pretty excited for you. This process has been mind-numbing at times, but I really think with so many builders out there building amazing bikes, if you're able to afford it and you've got the patience to wait for the rig to be built, it's a great route to choose for getting a bike.

www.iraryancycles.com
www.circleacycles.com
www.vanillabicycles.com
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,354 Posts
team_sheepshead said:
Zanconato rents space from Toby. Zanc just built my new road frame and Toby painted it. I got the best of both worlds. Pics to come.
Another one? Wasn't that gorgeous lugged red/white Zank yours too?

I have a hottubes, and love it. When I can justify another bike, my choice will be "try something new (Zank) or don't mess with success (Toby)". I know I can't go wrong either way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
813 Posts
danwerle said:
As far as weight goes, Jeremy (Plus One Lap) can attest to this perhaps more than any of us, but much of it will determine what you hang on the frame. I know Vanilla can build a steel frame for a geared cyclo-cross bike that, when fully built up, can tip the scales at under 18 pounds. I'm confident other builders can do the same.
yeah, parts are a larger % of a bike's weight than the frame is. You could definetly get a steel rig under 18lbs if you wanted to. You would just have to put little nicer ($$$) components than to get an aluminum frame under 18 lbs.

Dan, email me your 2 (! jealous) new bikes when you get them built up for the hanbuilt cross gallery ive started.

jeremy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,194 Posts
Don't forget about Rock Lobster!

Probably mentioned in the links to other threads, but not to be overlooked! Paul Sadoff builds steel and aluminum bikes, he's serious about cx and he's been building racing bikes for about 20 years. Whatever you desire, he'll build it spot on!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,627 Posts
Late reply, sorry. I had a black-and-white one that got stolen out of my moving van. Zank did me up with another one--Sachs lugs, Deda tubes. Toby's paint job is amazing. Black with gold pinstripes. I'll post some pics when the weather clears up around here.

euro-trash said:
Another one? Wasn't that gorgeous lugged red/white Zank yours too?

I have a hottubes, and love it. When I can justify another bike, my choice will be "try something new (Zank) or don't mess with success (Toby)". I know I can't go wrong either way.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top