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  1. #1
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    Seven Sola Steel 29er?

    does anyone have one?. im thinking of treating myself to one of these for racing but would like some feedback. with curtlo, waltworks, wily and others offering so much for so little im wondering is this (or any of the higher priced frames really) worth the $1500 plus . one strike against it is they seem to prefer cheaper steel (4130, 520 etc.) to build frames for bigger folks (im 250 lbs)which is a hard pill to swallow when others are using ox platinum and 853 for less expensive frames that other big guys seem to love. i know it takes more than high end steel to make a good bike, still this bothers me. whats you guys take on this?, ive gotten a ton of good info from this forum so fire away, im all ears !.
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  2. #2
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    i don't know your specific bike, but will say that seven builds heavier steel frames. i have a friend who had a steel road frame. it was quite heavy, well over 20 lbs built up. that aside, the bike was stolen and he had another one built.

    they are beefy, but they know what they're doing. then again, for the same money, you might be able to get something a bit lighter from another builder. though, that may not be the ticket.

    interesting that they use older steels, i'd guess they want thicker tubes perhaps? this is interesting, curious to see where it goes.

  3. #3
    Mmmmmm Beer!
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    I have a Seven Sola ti bike and they do good work. But so do a lot of other builders like http://www.strongframes.com/ http://www.desalvocycles.com/ http://www.kellybike.com/ and many others. I am having a Strong built now and I can say that so far the attention and detailed questions he has asked me are much different than Seven. I'm not saying anything bad about Seven but I wanted something different.

    You also have to think long term. Six years ago I was 250 as well but not that I'm riding a lot I'm down to 185. A frame built for a 250 lb guy would be harsh. Have fun with what ever you decide on.
    You wouldn't be in so much pain if you didn't ride like a dork!

  4. #4
    Law
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    Don't do it. Lots of good custom small frame builders will do just as good of a job for less money. Unless you need the name to make you feel good or you just have a thing for Sevens in general.

    For anywhere between $750 and $1100 you can get some sweet stuff. See, Curtlo ( I have had 4 frames ), Waltworks, Desalvo, Black Sheep, are all in this range.

    Now if you were talking about Ti....I might say something different.
    my builder: Neil at Cernitz Bike

  5. #5
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    Good thought from CPATCRASH. You know, you could run with a Karate Monkey for the time being, build up parts, etc. If you plan on loosing weight through riding, it could work to go that route and build the Monkey, once you have ridden a while and know where you'll be for the longer term and can get a frame with a better outlook.

  6. #6
    Mmmmmm Beer!
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    Try these guys then. There in New York and might have a demo. They do a lot of 29er bikes as well. I have a set of there forks on one of my bikes and love it.

    http://www.viciouscycles.com/index.php3
    You wouldn't be in so much pain if you didn't ride like a dork!

  7. #7
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    i hear what your saying but...

    Quote Originally Posted by CPATCRASH
    I have a Seven Sola ti bike and they do good work. But so do a lot of other builders like http://www.strongframes.com/ http://www.desalvocycles.com/ http://www.kellybike.com/ and many others. I am having a Strong built now and I can say that so far the attention and detailed questions he has asked me are much different than Seven. I'm not saying anything bad about Seven but I wanted something different.

    You also have to think long term. Six years ago I was 250 as well but not that I'm riding a lot I'm down to 185. A frame built for a 250 lb guy would be harsh. Have fun with what ever you decide on.
    im not fat, im 6ft 2in and at 230 lbs i have a 34in waist and a six pack. my waist is a 36 right now, im just a bigger guy than most. im riding a soma juice right now, which i love but its going to stay my trail bike. i want to get into a little racing and want a steel bike that will fit the bill. the sola seem's like a sweet bike, but ive wonder all the things you mentioned. also, im on the east coast and was thinking about using someone who lives and rides where i do. will it make a difference?, dont know but its a thought.
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  8. #8
    Law
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    Quote Originally Posted by edouble
    one strike against it is they seem to prefer cheaper steel (4130, 520 etc.) to build frames for bigger folks (im 250 lbs)which is a hard pill to swallow when others are using ox platinum and 853 for less expensive frames that other big guys seem to love.


    im not fat, im 6ft 2in and at 230 lbs i have a 34in waist and a six pack.

    Sweet! Its amazing! Posting here has help you to lose 20lbs in just 2 hours. MTBR will make millions. Take that Jared at Subway!!!
    my builder: Neil at Cernitz Bike

  9. #9
    Mmmmmm Beer!
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    Have you thought about IF? They were once Fat Chance. http://www.ifbikes.com/
    You wouldn't be in so much pain if you didn't ride like a dork!

  10. #10
    Mmmmmm Beer!
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    On a side note. My Sola is a 2004 that I got in October 2003 and it's been fine. I was just in a friend's bike shop and he is a Seven dealer. There was a new Duo-Lux being built and I said CRAP another $7000.00 bike, that's the third one I have seen in here in the last month or two. And he said NO, it's the same one. It had to be sent back to Seven twice with problems.
    You wouldn't be in so much pain if you didn't ride like a dork!

  11. #11
    Law
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    Quote Originally Posted by CPATCRASH
    Have you thought about IF? They were once Fat Chance. http://www.ifbikes.com/
    Fat Chance = Chris Chance and Gary Helfrich in the beginning around 1980 I think

    Gary leaves to form Merlin in 1986

    Merlin hires Mark vandermark around this time I think

    1995, Fat chance is gone. I.F. is born

    Around the same year I think Vandermark is done with merlin and goes out on his own with some other to form Seven.

    So both are decendents of fat chance. I have alway thought this was pretty cool
    my builder: Neil at Cernitz Bike

  12. #12
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    thanks for the recommendations...

    its very interesting to see that the east coast builders recommend shorter TT's than builders elsewhere. vicious and IF have much shorter TT's than anyone out west. our trails are crazy tight and twisty, i wonder if thats why?.
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  13. #13
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    I actually had a 1999 IF steel bike and I wish I never sold it. It was one of the nicest bikes I ever rode.
    You wouldn't be in so much pain if you didn't ride like a dork!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Law
    1995, Fat chance is gone. I.F. is born
    Not to be picky, but Fat Chance was not gone in 1995. They actually moved from Sommerville MA to Saratoga NY and teamed up with Serotta for "financial reasons". They left almost all the old Fat Chance crew behind in Sommerville in the move and that was the crew that banned together to form IF from my understanding. But Fat Chance produced frames until 2000 I believe. I have a MBA (or one of those mags) that has an IF and a Fat Chance on the same page of a buyer's guide. I thought that was funny!

    Also as long as we are talking about this, Mike Flanigan was one of those from the Fat Chance crew that was left in Sommerville in Fat's move and was a real driver behind the formation of IF. Evidently, he stuck it out for a while at IF and then started up Alternative Needs Transportation or ANT, which makes some pretty cool bikes as well.

    Neat stuff, but kind of makes the high-end bike industry seem sort of incestuos...

    LP

    Some reading on the subject if anyone is interested - I kind of dig this stuff...
    http://www.antbikemike.com/about.html
    http://www.firstflightbikes.com/fat.htm
    http://www.fatcogs.com/
    Last edited by lanpope; 01-26-2006 at 10:41 PM.

  15. #15
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    if it were me, you want a race bike to be light. i think for 1500 or so you can get a ti bike from some of the smaller builders.

    if you are in the northeast, i suggest you contact ted wojcik. he is back at making frames and giving a great deal right now.

    he used to have these great T shirts that read

    "I don't care how they do it in California"

    Ted is in New Hampster.
    Only boring people get bored.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by edouble
    im not fat, im 6ft 2in and at 230 lbs i have a 34in waist and a six pack.
    Sorry about that, you're just one of those huge guys. I would second looking at IF. I have one of their road bikes and it's amazing! If I could have afforded to have them build a mtn. frame, I probably would have gone with them. I found good customer service from a very busy company, and a killer product.

  17. #17
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    Niner Bikes

    If you want steel and want a good price I'll put my $.02 for Niner. They are a California company, but are great to deal with. For the price of the Sola frame alone, you can get their kit including wheels, brakes, fork, and Reynolds 853 frame. Mine came in yesterday, it's super sweet. If you need or want custom you have many choices from East, Central and West Coast. Every custom builder mentioned in previous posts is great, just figure out what your needs are, how long you're willing to wait, and how much you want to spend. One day I'll get a custom build, but ignorance is bliss so stock frames work for me.

    BTW I had an early 90's Yo Eddy that I sold when I thought that having a 1" head tube was going to limit me and I didn't want to stay rigid anymore. I wish I had never sold it!

  18. #18
    Law
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    Quote Originally Posted by lanpope
    Not to be picky, but Fat Chance was not gone in 1995. They actually moved from Sommerville MA to Saratoga NY and teamed up with Serotta for "financial reasons". They left almost all the old Fat Chance crew behind in Sommerville in the move and that was the crew that banned together to form IF from my understanding. But Fat Chance produced frames until 2000 I believe. I have a MBA (or one of those mags) that has an IF and a Fat Chance on the same page of a buyer's guide. I thought that was funny!
    When I said gone, I meant gone from the state, which was 100% correct. Fat Chance leaving the state was the whole reason behind I.F. forming.
    my builder: Neil at Cernitz Bike

  19. #19
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    i dont want a ti bike but...

    Quote Originally Posted by jh_on_the_cape
    if it were me, you want a race bike to be light. i think for 1500 or so you can get a ti bike from some of the smaller builders.

    if you are in the northeast, i suggest you contact ted wojcik. he is back at making frames and giving a great deal right now.

    he used to have these great T shirts that read

    "I don't care how they do it in California"

    Ted is in New Hampster.
    do you have his contact info?.
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  20. #20
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    i really wanted a niner but...

    Quote Originally Posted by Fat Bob
    If you want steel and want a good price I'll put my $.02 for Niner. They are a California company, but are great to deal with. For the price of the Sola frame alone, you can get their kit including wheels, brakes, fork, and Reynolds 853 frame. Mine came in yesterday, it's super sweet. If you need or want custom you have many choices from East, Central and West Coast. Every custom builder mentioned in previous posts is great, just figure out what your needs are, how long you're willing to wait, and how much you want to spend. One day I'll get a custom build, but ignorance is bliss so stock frames work for me.

    BTW I had an early 90's Yo Eddy that I sold when I thought that having a 1" head tube was going to limit me and I didn't want to stay rigid anymore. I wish I had never sold it!
    the frames are disc brake only. im a v-brake kind of guy (i know, i know disc's are the shiznit!) if not id already own one. the product looks fantastic and the geometry seems perfect to me. im not going to buy dics brakes so thats that.
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  21. #21
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    noooooo...

    Quote Originally Posted by one1spede
    Sorry about that, you're just one of those huge guys. I would second looking at IF. I have one of their road bikes and it's amazing! If I could have afforded to have them build a mtn. frame, I probably would have gone with them. I found good customer service from a very busy company, and a killer product.
    im 250 lbs right now, but @ 230 lbs i have a six pack. i need to drop 20 lbs to be at my fighting weight.
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  22. #22
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    Ted...

    Quote Originally Posted by edouble
    do you have his contact info?.
    Ted and his son build nice stuff. He's been around for quite some time. He works with steel.

    Ted Wojcik Custom Bicycles
    6 Gigante Drive
    Hampstead, NH 03841
    (603) 329-8057

    I hear you re: linear brakes. I still have some sweet Hershey Billet's on my 26" Gunnar, wish I could have moved them over to the sir9, but time to move on. Whoever ends up with my Gunnar will have some swanky brakes.

  23. #23
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    i dunno what you want but i am of similar build 6'3" 230ish east coast (philly) rider.

    walt built me this sweet thing....


    accroding to the kinda crappy LBS scale 24lbs complete (no idea what the frame weighed). i am very impressed!

    and the improtant thing is: it slices up east coast singletrack like a champion samurai...

    i don't know where your at but if you want to check it out, i'll be at fairhill tomorrow and am generally always up for a ride!

  24. #24
    try driving your car less
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    Quote Originally Posted by edouble
    do you have his contact info?.
    ted does steel.

    but i think for 1500+ you can get a ti bike from desalvo (like 1800 i think).
    Only boring people get bored.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Law
    When I said gone, I meant gone from the state, which was 100% correct. Fat Chance leaving the state was the whole reason behind I.F. forming.

    I hear you...some people say that once Fat moved to NY...they were no longer REALLY Fat City anymore anyway. I thought maybe that was the angle you were playing.

    Kinda OT - I just got a line on a '95 Fat Chance Slim Chance road bike w/ the Yo Eddy road fork. Actually a pretty sweet ride, and would go well with my IF Club Racer (which I just got off of and DANG is that bike sweet!), but I really need to get the whole geared 29er thing sorted out before I buy anything else.

    LP

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