- Recommendations for a steel frame?
Well I’ll be the first.
On-one 853 inbred second hand in the classifieds. I have a SS one and am very happy with it. Not particularly light though.
Out of interest, why are you particularly keen to have a steel frame? If you’re expecting some magical mini-suspension super-springy feel you may well be disappointed with the reality. Like most things, the effects you feel may be there but they’re usually less pronounced than the evangelists/magazine review writers would have you believe and steel ‘feel’ is largely determined by design so many steel frames are barely any more ‘comfortable’ than aluminium ones…Posted 8 years agoRickosMember
Just got myself a Genesis Alpitude frame from 18Bikes for £360. Not used it yet as I need a seatpost shim, but it looks nice and is relatively cheap for 853. Not the best finish in the world, but its for riding in the woods and falling off, so that doesn’t really matter. Made for 140mm forks, but you’d be fine on 130mm – I’m using some old 130mm Manitou Minutes for now.Posted 8 years agoChiselMember
Second one for the Alpitude got mine last weekend had it built up just in time for the Dyfi and it was absolutely stunning. If your looking for something a little less aggresive go for a Cotic Soul i had one of those prior to the Alpitude and that saw me through Trans Wales and a number of 24 hour team and Solo events as well as a good few local and NPS races over the last 3-4 years.Before the sceptics ask the only reason i didn’t get another Cotic is that Cy didn’t have one in my size when i needed one, my old one has passed to the great bike shop in the sky through no fault of the manufacturer but i must say that Cy has been more than understanding on offering help in replacing it .But what ever you go for i would recommend it be 853 as having had a Kona Explosif before the Cotic there was, in my opinion, a very noticeable improvement in feel and ride quality.Posted 8 years agoskiMember
Here too, never noticed a difference between the standard D76 and the 853 version, they both felt the same to me.
Quite a difference though if like me, you fit between two sizes, the 18″ felt great for all day long undulating rides, while the 16″ wanted to be hammered round tight and twisting singletracks, a real blast to ride.
Frame size, may be me more important than frame material depending on the type of riding you want to do 😉Posted 8 years agodesfMember
I’ve tried loads of steel frames and the Soul has worked best for me. It is a very personal thing though. Try to get some test rides – I know it’s difficult with a lot of the web based sellers but folk on here are usually great at offering their bikes for a test.
I liked the P7 too but mine was nicked. PA is great frame but noticeably heavier than the Soul. That’s not a criticism, it’s aimed at a slightly different place in the market. I’ve not had a 456 but have had a few older inbreds. Very good and great value.
If you are near Edinburgh and want to try a 19″ Soul, you can try mine.Posted 8 years agoWoodySubscriber
Like most things, the effects you feel may be there but they’re usually less pronounced than the evangelists/magazine review writers would have you believe and steel ‘feel’ is largely determined by design so many steel frames are barely any more ‘comfortable’ than aluminium ones
Very true IME. I have found the cheaper steel hardtails can have a ‘dead’ feeling ie. DN6 Inbred, 456, PA, Rock Lobster etc. although fork choice, wheelset, tyres and even bars also all have a marked effect on the ride. At that price point you get what you pay for and they all build into decent bikes.
I think you are right to go with 853 or similar as it will be worth it in the long term but bear in mind that just because it is a good steel tube, it doen’t necessarily mean that the frame angles/dimensions/characteristics will suit your riding style. The Soul seems to get nothing but praise but depending on your budget, how about a custom build or something like a DeKerf, Soulcraft ?
As Desf says – try before you buy if you can.Posted 8 years agoMr AgreeableSubscriber
Funny, I noticed no difference between the ride of my 853 inbred and the standard DN6 one…
Isn’t the main difference between 853 and normal cro-mo one the fact that 853 is stronger for a given weight? So if they’re using similar tubesets then an 853 will be a bit tougher and more dent-resistant but not much discernible difference.Posted 8 years ago
Absolutely but that doesn’t stop people claiming that 853 rides with more spring… (or conversely as above that cheaper tubesets are more dull) Well it must do, it costs more 🙂
FWIW, most steel frames designed for long forks (5″+) aren’t going to be particularly springy simply because the main triangle has to be beefed up to cope with the leverage of the forks.Posted 8 years agojimSubscriber
Isn’t the main difference between 853 and normal cro-mo one the fact that 853 is stronger for a given weight? So if they’re using similar tubesets then an 853 will be a bit tougher and more dent-resistant but not much discernible difference.
Or, you can use less 853 than normal cro-mo and end up with a lighter, “springier” frame.Posted 8 years agoseth-enslow666Member
I’m not having any of that steel is springy myth! I’m another who cant really tell any difference from an alloy or an 853 frame. I had a Genesis altitude 853 and it was no different to a decent alloy frame in ride comfort. In fact it felt really dull and heavy the main reason I got rid of it. The On One Inbred I had, did feel a little softer though. But to how much would not even be possible to gauge. Have you thought about a Cove Stifee or if you must have steel to ride the steel myth then maybe the handjob.Posted 8 years ago
Don’t get me wrong – I have ridden steel frames that are noticeably springy. I just don’t like the myth that all steel frames are springy. The tube design of steel frames is what allows the spring – specifically the skinny tubes that you can get away with when using steel that would just fatigue on an alumninium frame. As above, if your steel frame has fat tubing (eg to cope with long forks) then it’s unlikely that it’ll be springy.
As an example, my (alumninium) Pace RC303 was if anything more ‘comfortable’/springy than my 456 with the same components.Posted 8 years agoHTTP404Member
I loved my 456. Geometry felt good. sturdy and purposeful. When it was time to move on – I got a pace RC305. And like Clubber I’ve found this to be more springy than the 456. In fact, far more springy (and more than my charge duster too).
Steels great. You get skinny tube profiles and a few kudos. But maybe that’s all you’ll get over a well designed alloy frame.
Imho, the 456 is still a *great* frame.Posted 8 years ago
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