Remember the Alpinestars Ti Mega? Well, it’s back with modern geometry… sort of

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The car world has resto-mods and even born again classics, and now so too does the mountain bike world.

There are many many mountain bikes from the past that I still lust after. Now and then I’ll even scroll the classifieds to see if I can find something from the past, but even when I do I’ll rarely pull the trigger. As much as I love the bikes from the early years of mountain biking, with their out of the box design choices and ideas, I know deep down in my heart that it would be a very pretty, yet expensive ornament.

As pretty as a polished AMP full suspension bike with a matching linkage fork might be, it’s not going to be anywhere near as good as a modern bike, likely not even as good as the current crop of gravel bikes on the market.

What someone needs to do is to take the aesthetics of old bikes then mix in modern geometry, features and standards. Just imagine how cool an Alpinestar Ti Mega would be in mullet configuration and modern geo!

Well, imagine no more has Tora Cycles has made just the retro mashup. Taking inspiration from the Ti Mega, or Al Mega if you weren’t flash with your cash, this love letter to retro looks as rad as the original only it should huck like a hardtail should.

Rather than aluminium or Titanium, the Tora version is built with T45 steel tubing and is built around a 140mm travel fork. Tora has even added the ultimate 2021 must have to their vision of the Alpinestar, a mullet rear wheel!

In addition to bringing retro hardtails back to life, Tora Cycles also likes to build steel downhill bikes inspired by Brooklyn Machine Works. Check out their Instagram for more, and if you like the look of this also check out Mullet Cycles hardtail, possibly inspired by the same hardtail.


Viewing 32 posts - 1 through 32 (of 32 total)
  • Remember the Alpinestars Ti Mega? Well, it’s back with modern geometry… sort of
  • Premier Icon mintyjim
    Full Member

    I absolutely loved the Alpinestars Al Mega as a kid!

    Remember the days of catalogue/brochures – the Saracen (when they were good first time around) and Alpinestars were my favourite and about as close as I could get to the bikes as a 13 year old!

    Premier Icon meesterbond
    Full Member

    Wasn’t it the Ti-Mega that had such a floppy rear end that the chain would come off every time you put the power down?

    I still wanted one though.

    Premier Icon Vincent Gregory
    Full Member

    Yeti Ultimate was my dream raised stay bike back then

    Premier Icon robbradley1
    Free Member

    T45? What happened to the concept of butted tubesets and weight/strength optimisation? Looks kinda cool though….

    Premier Icon b230ftw
    Free Member

    Oh my word I want one. I have a bit of a problem with elevated chain stays, I love them so much!
    I had a Rocky Mountain Experience not so long back and that was amazing to ride.

    Premier Icon billoddie
    Full Member

    That’s lovely but it needs more NEON YELLOW!

    Premier Icon v7fmp
    Free Member

    very cool.

    As others mentioned, i used to lust after them. Al-Mega and was it a Cro-mega?

    Elevated chainstay for the win! 😀

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    Looks very nice.

    Is the thicker steel because of resisting the twist that the old ones suffered from?

    I rode a mates Saracen and it jumped the gears around something chronic as it twisted – but it was a lovely thing IIRC….

    There were many back in the day – Nishiki, Yeti, Scott (who had the mad one that flexed upwards), Ritchey IIRC all did them.

    Premier Icon thegeneralist
    Full Member

    pull the trigger.

    Did you really write that…. Eww 🤮

    Premier Icon big_scot_nanny
    Full Member

    I too lusted after an Alpinestars, but ended up with a Fisher Montare raised chain stay effort instead. Beautiful sparkly blue finish. Felt amazing with that rear wheel tucked right under your bum. Seattube snapped just under the chain stay when riding up a steep hill.

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    I made an e-stay 29er in 2011 out of a Columbus Zona / Gara mix. Managed to find a down tube with long butted section to join the chainstays but limited in overall length so had to be a short rigid fork. Still use it as my commuter with Alfine hub but just about to be pensioned off. Amazingly the chainstays / down tube / seat tube haven’t cracked! 69 deg head angle, 55mm fork offset and 400mm chainstays was radical for a 29er back then 🙂

    Premier Icon DaveMac
    Full Member

    1992 Al-Mega XT, my first MTb, what a glorious machine, all 21 speed of her with her rigid ally forks. Love at first sight/ride.

    Premier Icon doomanic
    Full Member

    I wanted an Al-Mega soooo much. I used to go into Noah’s Ark in Cheltenham and drool all over the one they had above the stairs.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    @mick_r – that is lovely…

    Premier Icon ctk
    Full Member

    Lovely stuff Mick 😎
    If it’s made of steel it should be the cro-mega we’re comparing it to. I’d love to see a comeback from Alpinestars.

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Looks like we both use the same chainstay fixture…. (lump of wood and nails)

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    I always wanted an Alpine stars or Mantis or Yeti. But never liked the e-stay Saracens – even though I was a Saracen fan and had the fillet brazed regular stay Kili Flyer.

    Premier Icon thepodge
    Free Member

    Its a nice bike but other than it being an e-stay, its got nothing in common with the original frame.

    Premier Icon ctk
    Full Member

    I’ve got a Alpinestars ASR 400 which is a couple of years after the cro-mega. Nice curvy top tube and seat stays. Slightly Stooge ish

    Premier Icon Hannah Dobson
    Full Member

    @mick_r ooohhh. I’ve gone a bit fluttery. May I draw your attention to this https://form.asana.com/?k=Qz1S6ibQTvMWWrxM4Q4J0A&d=1121725724315322

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Plenty more weird bikes where that came from Hannah 🙂

    I did send Sanny some photos but maybe he forgot to pass them on….

    Premier Icon cynic-al
    Full Member

    @matt_outandabout – Ritchey made an e stay bike? I’d be interested to hear more.

    Premier Icon aphex_2k
    Free Member

    I dont remember a ti alpinestars? cro and al, yes.

    also, other than an e-stay, it’s not much to do with AS is it?

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    @cynic-al – couldn’t tell you anything beyond I remember seeing one at the sailing club – which at the time had this chap called Lester Noble who had just set up Orange…

    Premier Icon cynic-al
    Full Member

    Interesting – I never saw a production one

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    Hijack:


    @mick_r
    I DMed you a while back did you get it?

    Premier Icon mick_r
    Full Member

    Sorry Mols last dm from you shows up as 3 years ago (chainstays).

    Back on topic there was definitely Alpinestars e-stay in steel, Al and Ti flavours. Don’t remember a Ritchey but as he did custom then one could have existed. Did he not do some early mtbs with additional direct lateral tubes from ht to rear dropout? (or was that just Breezer?)

    Premier Icon ctk
    Full Member

    The Ti Alpinestars is an absolute thing of beauty especially the forks. Like the Al-Mega they were prone to cracking.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Full Member

    I’m quite liking mick_r’s implementation. Always fancied a cro-mega in my youth.

    An SS-able (or IGH) e-stay makes brilliant sense for us putoline fanbois, no need to open a split link to wax a chain (IIRC they’re considered to bendy for gates drive though?)

    Premier Icon Jay
    Full Member

    So like a Ti-Mega, but:
    – Not an Alpinestars
    – Not titanium
    Although does have an elevated chainstay…

    So pretty much identical then! 😉

    Premier Icon Jay
    Full Member

    Here’s my Trimble.

    Please see my Trimble above – it’s carbon and with a single main horizontal beam.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Full Member

    Its a nice bike but other than it being an e-stay, its got nothing in common with the original frame.

    I suppose the problem is that back in the 90s everything was an “XC bike” at least by current standards, these days your typical (MTB) punter wants a “trail bike” in geometry terms at least, and so what do you really get for adding e-stays to a modern (LLS) trail HT? Some more compliance? Which you then possibly have to design out with thicker tubing to reduce lateral flex?

    I suppose the question in 2021 is what application would actually suit the use of an e-stay? We have more niches these days so the basic benefits would maybe be that you could cheat more tyre clearance without needing to make the wheelbase huge (ref Trek stache with asymmetric e-stay) and as I said previously, a frame you never need to break the chain (or belt) on…

    So maybe the best use case is different from ‘Tora Cycles’ LLS trail HT, really that frame is just a bit of a “homage” to an old MTB that people in their 40s and 50s will remember fondly. Practically speaking an e-stay makes better sense (IMO) on a slot or EBB frame for winter SS, bike packing or dare I say it Gravel these days?

Viewing 32 posts - 1 through 32 (of 32 total)

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