Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby CXCommuter » Mon Nov 11, 2013 6:14 pm

Loving this thread- please bring on more retro upgrades in steel. I rode my stepfathers Repco superlight back in the mid to late 90's with 8 speed 105 gear as an intro to road riding, unfortunately it died the death of corrosion, collapsing into two pieces.

Please more photos!!!
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by BNA » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:10 pm

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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby TDC » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:10 pm

The 2nd Womble wrote:I properly caught the road bug in 1987. I was obsessed in the 90's and carbon was becoming more common. I marvelled at Trek OLCV and Kestrel bikes like everyone else and even enjoyed riding one for 2 weeks when I was allowed. Had my share of rib cracking aluminium over the years. Test rode a Ridley and an Argon recently, both carbon bikes. Loathed them even though I think Ridleys look the duck's and tried to convince myself. Now I have my Concorde waiting patiently to be lovingly restored and you know what? I can't flamin' wait. That one bike sitting in the study has truly rekindled my passion and desire to throw a leg over. If you don't love a good steel bike, you'll probably just never get it. If you want to buy one, don't let anyone stop you!
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MMM nice concorde. I need one to match my PDM jersey.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby The 2nd Womble » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:23 pm

MINE! :mrgreen:
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby TDC » Mon Nov 11, 2013 7:26 pm

ahhhh its too big
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby The 2nd Womble » Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:15 pm

TDC wrote:ahhhh its too big

It's a 56cm and I licked it all over so you wouldn't want it anyway.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby lobstermash » Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:30 pm

Haha, I think the point's proven that steel is far from dead... Don't worry Rodney, you'll see the light one day!

To the OP, getting a sweet 80's or 90's steel roadie will be much cheaper than a carbon, or even alloy bike. The 80's were a time when people were often gifted a road bike as a matriculation present, whether they really wanted it or not. Consequently, there are many thousand wonderful old mid-high end bikes sitting in sheds around the country. They turn up at rubbish tips or cheap on various eclassifieds. Just be a little patient for the right one to pop up, and be prepared to see a lot more really nice bikes appear just after you've bought one...
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby Jean » Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:48 am

Having gone through the steel road frame buying thing lately I compiled a bit of a list of what new off the peg frames I could find. It's not exhaustive as I discarded a few options for various reasons, but here it is in case it helps.

Off the peg

Soma Smoothie
De Rosa Neo Primato
Enigma Elite (can be semi-custom)
De Rosa Corum
Masi Gran Criterium (in Aus?)
Colossi (Zona)
Champione (Zona)
Genesis Equilibrium (Reynolds 725)
Jamis Eclipse
Scapin Style
Tokyo Fixed Road Rocket
Torelli Corsa Strada
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby bigfriendlyvegan » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:02 am

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Here's my 1992 Greg LeMond Ventoux in full Team Z colourway with 10spd 105 on it, Mavic Open Pro rims laced to 105 hubs, and hot pink bar tape. Goes and looks better with the Swiss Side Franc wheels I've been riding on recently. I race on this. It's lovely to ride.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby kallvatten » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:11 am

lobstermash wrote:Haha, I think the point's proven that steel is far from dead... Don't worry Rodney, you'll see the light one day!

To the OP, getting a sweet 80's or 90's steel roadie will be much cheaper than a carbon, or even alloy bike. The 80's were a time when people were often gifted a road bike as a matriculation present, whether they really wanted it or not. Consequently, there are many thousand wonderful old mid-high end bikes sitting in sheds around the country. They turn up at rubbish tips or cheap on various eclassifieds. Just be a little patient for the right one to pop up, and be prepared to see a lot more really nice bikes appear just after you've bought one...


Fair point. Will keep at the waiting game. ;)

Jean wrote:Having gone through the steel road frame buying thing lately I compiled a bit of a list of what new off the peg frames I could find. It's not exhaustive as I discarded a few options for various reasons, but here it is in case it helps.

Off the peg

Soma Smoothie
De Rosa Neo Primato
Enigma Elite (can be semi-custom)
De Rosa Corum
Masi Gran Criterium (in Aus?)
Colossi (Zona)
Champione (Zona)
Genesis Equilibrium (Reynolds 725)
Jamis Eclipse
Scapin Style
Tokyo Fixed Road Rocket
Torelli Corsa Strada


Thanks for that Jean. Saves me doing some homework! :P

bigfriendlyvegan wrote:Image

Here's my 1992 Greg LeMond Ventoux in full Team Z colourway with 10spd 105 on it, Mavic Open Pro rims laced to 105 hubs, and hot pink bar tape. Goes and looks better with the Swiss Side Franc wheels I've been riding on recently. I race on this. It's lovely to ride.


Nice colour coordination with the tape! :D They certainly weren't afraid of vibrant colour combinations back in the day, not like the standard black/white/red/blue you see nowadays (almost) to the exclusion of all other colours.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby Jean » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:24 am

Oh, and i came across this just a few days ago, the Ritchey Road Logic, which is available just as a frameset. Not much colour choice, but Bike24 stocks them.

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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby blkmcs » Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:13 pm

Jean wrote:Having gone through the steel road frame buying thing lately I compiled a bit of a list of what new off the peg frames I could find. It's not exhaustive as I discarded a few options for various reasons, but here it is in case it helps.

Off the peg

Soma Smoothie
De Rosa Neo Primato
Enigma Elite (can be semi-custom)
De Rosa Corum
Masi Gran Criterium (in Aus?)
Colossi (Zona)
Champione (Zona)
Genesis Equilibrium (Reynolds 725)
Jamis Eclipse
Scapin Style
Tokyo Fixed Road Rocket
Torelli Corsa Strada

Nice list.

The Genesis Equilibrium is available in a range of Reynolds steels
The 00 is in 520 (carbon fork)
The 10 and 20 are in 725 (carbon fork)
The Disc is in 631 (forks also in 631 to accommodate the disc brakes)
The 853 is in 853 (available as frame and forks only)

The 20 is a beautiful ride.

Of course if you want something a little more race inspired then Genesis offer the Volare range, all in Reynolds steel
The 00 in 631
The 10 in 853
The 20 in 931
The Team in 953
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby singlespeedscott » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:31 pm

blkmcs wrote:The Genesis Equilibrium is available in a range of Reynolds steels
The 00 is in 520 (carbon fork)
The 10 and 20 are in 725 (carbon fork)
The Disc is in 631 (forks also in 631 to accommodate the disc brakes)
The 853 is in 853 (available as frame and forks only)

The 20 is a beautiful ride.

Of course if you want something a little more race inspired then Genesis offer the Volare range, all in Reynolds steel
The 00 in 631
The 10 in 853
The 20 in 931
The Team in 953


They'd be nice if it wasn't for the sloping top tubes and the carbon forks :(
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby Jean » Tue Nov 12, 2013 3:44 pm

Now, now. I admire a level top tube as much as the next steel lover, but it should be a broad church and if a sloping tube and a bit of carbon at the front end floats your boat? Well why not?

There is no rule that bicycle style, be it in steel or not, should be forever frozen c.1997, though we are all entitled to our tastes.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby MattyP » Wed Nov 13, 2013 7:57 am

My roadie. 2009 Kona Kapu.

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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby cyclotaur » Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:45 am

My son picked up an old Apollo Clipper roadbike from a mate for $150 .... it was rideable but after a few months of being parked at home the old tyres were stuffed and the front one failed when some air was added !!

Time to get it home to Dad's place for a bit of a refurb. Some newer spare wheels from my old roadie, newer tyres and some new brakes, along with a general clean-up and adjusting the downtube shifters and the old girl is mobile again, and ready for the retro-scene of the inner suburbs. ;)
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He subsequently stripped a crank arm pedal thread, so I sourced a better 2nd hand 'biopace' crankset (matching) and fixed that. I also acquired a better suited set of wheels (running Gatorskin 28s) and a 6-speed cassette to replace the bodged 8-speed setup. The son now trundles happily around the inner Melbourne suburbs and recently completed the ATB 50km ride. Now for sure it's a fairly heavy old thing but well suited to it's current purpose, and has cost probably <$400, all up.

I'm no retro nut myself so if I was contemplating a new steel roadie the previously mentioned Jamis Eclipse/Ultegra might be a contender at around $2900, but more likely for my budget and ride criteria would be the worthy Jamis Quest/105 (Reynolds631 steel frame), at just under $2k.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby kallvatten » Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:16 pm

MattyP wrote:My roadie. 2009 Kona Kapu.


Looking good MattyP! And that's a great clear stretch of beach, where did you take the photo?

cyclotaur wrote:My son picked up an old Apollo Clipper roadbike from a mate for $150 .... it was rideable but after a few months of being parked at home the old tyres were stuffed and the front one failed when some air was added !!

Time to get it home to Dad's place for a bit of a refurb. Some newer spare wheels from my old roadie, newer tyres and some new brakes, along with a general clean-up and adjusting the downtube shifters and the old girl is mobile again, and ready for the retro-scene of the inner suburbs. ;)
Image

He subsequently stripped a crank arm pedal thread, so I sourced a better 2nd hand 'biopace' crankset (matching) and fixed that. I also acquired a better suited set of wheels (running Gatorskin 28s) and a 6-speed cassette to replace the bodged 8-speed setup. The son now trundles happily around the inner Melbourne suburbs and recently completed the ATB 50km ride. Now for sure it's a fairly heavy old thing but well suited to it's current purpose, and has cost probably <$400, all up.

I'm no retro nut myself so if I was contemplating a new steel roadie the previously mentioned Jamis Eclipse/Ultegra might be a contender at around $2900, but more likely for my budget and ride criteria would be the worthy Jamis Quest/105 (Reynolds631 steel frame), at just under $2k.


Sounds like a good investment cyclotaur. I'll admit as much as I'd love a brand new roadie (~$2k), something like that at <$400 would be fine too. Congrats to him on his 50km ride, by the way!

I'm curious, do you have an idea generally of how difficult it is to run different cassettes on a frame? Like with the Clipper you changed it from an 8 to a 6-speed. I imagine your choices were quite limited as far as compatibility. Did you have to change the derailleur and so on as well?
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby FuzzyDropbear » Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:11 pm

I have recently (in the past 6 months) bought my first roadie, a steel Apollo Jaguar. This is the lowest model Apollo of it's year, but it still rides quite well despite having the (dreaded) original 27" steel rims, possibly I'm used to riding heavier bikes, but also possibly because I'm not out to set land speed records. It's fun to ride and I wouldn't call it a very harsh ride. If I see some potholes ahead, I just lift my butt off the seat and using my legs to absorb rough patches, just like you would on a mountain bike.

I bought mine for under $100 because I didn't want to fork out $400-$500 for a roadie like my mates as I didn't know if I would really enjoy the roadie as much as the mountain bikes.

It also gets a few looks because the shiny steel rims blind people as they wizz past on their fancy carbon fibre bikes.. Either that or they're just thinking 'haha, that idiot can't afford a real bike' :lol:. I averaged 27km/hr ish on my last 70km ride but wasn't out to set any records, originally I was out for around a 20km ride and then thought "I'll just go to the next hill"....... :roll:

kallvatten wrote:I'm curious, do you have an idea generally of how difficult it is to run different cassettes on a frame? Like with the Clipper you changed it from an 8 to a 6-speed. I imagine your choices were quite limited as far as compatibility. Did you have to change the derailleur and so on as well?


Different cassettes come with different frame spacing. ie. my Jag has a 5 speed cassette and the frame spacing isn't large enough to upgrade to a larger cassette (6 + speeds) without respacing the frame. Derailleurs are pretty dumb objects, they get told what to do and how far to move by the shifters, so you can keep your derailleur and replace shifters to get what you want. Unless you're changing chain types, which may land you in trouble, but quick search would net the answers depending on what you're swapping too.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby MattyP » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:14 pm

kallvatten wrote:
MattyP wrote:My roadie. 2009 Kona Kapu.


Looking good MattyP! And that's a great clear stretch of beach, where did you take the photo? .


Williamstown back beach - Melbourne. Part of one of my usual loops.

Have seen the Jamis Eclipse in the flesh & it's mighty purdy....
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby cyclotaur » Wed Nov 13, 2013 2:37 pm

FuzzyDropbear wrote:
kallvatten wrote:I'm curious, do you have an idea generally of how difficult it is to run different cassettes on a frame? Like with the Clipper you changed it from an 8 to a 6-speed. I imagine your choices were quite limited as far as compatibility. Did you have to change the derailleur and so on as well?

Different cassettes come with different frame spacing. ie. my Jag has a 5 speed cassette and the frame spacing isn't large enough to upgrade to a larger cassette (6 + speeds) without respacing the frame. Derailleurs are pretty dumb objects, they get told what to do and how far to move by the shifters, so you can keep your derailleur and replace shifters to get what you want. Unless you're changing chain types, which may land you in trouble, but quick search would net the answers depending on what you're swapping too.

Basically what Fuzzy says. The Clipper, I think, would originally have had a 5 or 6 speed on board. Someone had jammed an 8-speed wheel/cassette on there but at least 2 of the gears were unobtainable within the range of the RD. When I acquired the replacement cranks I actually got (for free) a reasonably straight set of Araya wheels with a 6-sp cassette so I swapped them on and hey presto everything worked fine.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby kallvatten » Thu Nov 14, 2013 4:46 pm

MattyP wrote:
kallvatten wrote:
MattyP wrote:My roadie. 2009 Kona Kapu.


Looking good MattyP! And that's a great clear stretch of beach, where did you take the photo? .


Williamstown back beach - Melbourne. Part of one of my usual loops.

Have seen the Jamis Eclipse in the flesh & it's mighty purdy....


Brilliant! I'll have to get riding around that way sometime.. ;)

cyclotaur wrote:
FuzzyDropbear wrote:Different cassettes come with different frame spacing. ie. my Jag has a 5 speed cassette and the frame spacing isn't large enough to upgrade to a larger cassette (6 + speeds) without respacing the frame. Derailleurs are pretty dumb objects, they get told what to do and how far to move by the shifters, so you can keep your derailleur and replace shifters to get what you want. Unless you're changing chain types, which may land you in trouble, but quick search would net the answers depending on what you're swapping too.

Basically what Fuzzy says. The Clipper, I think, would originally have had a 5 or 6 speed on board. Someone had jammed an 8-speed wheel/cassette on there but at least 2 of the gears were unobtainable within the range of the RD. When I acquired the replacement cranks I actually got (for free) a reasonably straight set of Araya wheels with a 6-sp cassette so I swapped them on and hey presto everything worked fine.


That's fair enough. Cheers everyone. :)
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby humanbeing » Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:26 pm

Get steel!

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Jim Bundy frame set custom built from Reynolds 531 by Peter Bundy
Campagnolo Athena 11 speed

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Besovski Columbus SLX frame set - used
Campagnolo Athena 11 speed

Have a great ride,
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1995 Bosevski - Athena
mid/late eighties Colnago Cromor
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby Wakatuki » Wed Nov 20, 2013 1:38 pm

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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby nickobec » Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:31 pm

This NOS Colombus SLX frame from the early 90s was not that expensive
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"Flanders" is the Belgian equivalent of Ribble

A Waloon friend has accused me of being too Flemish when I ride it with helmet and socks that match the saddle
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ps I found the frame at my local LBS, just walked in an it was there. Was not looking for another steel frame at the time.
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Re: Looking for first (steel) road bike - what should I do?

Postby Wakatuki » Wed Nov 20, 2013 5:57 pm

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My steel girl.....................
I would like to modernise but it tells me not to everytime I think of doing it. It is a beauty of a ride though.. It's been tarted up with some spit an polish since this picture. Original 1990 bar tape, Image
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