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  1. #1
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    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?

    Something that has been on my mind for a long time. Would you buy - or even better, have you commissioned - a brand new, vintage-style mountain bike? Retro-modding is fine (not a slavish reproduction), but something that hits all the hallmarks: rigid (+non-corrected), thumb shifters and rim brakes.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion. The angle I'm after is more along the lines of given your interest in, and likely baptism by a now vintage ride, is there a place in your fleet for a non-vintage, vintage-style bike? And, if so, would you spend real money to make it happen?

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-gallus-cycles-650b-mtb-1.jpg

  2. #2
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    Did that myself. WTB rollercams in 2017 (with 29 inch wheels).

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-img_8374.jpg

  3. #3
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    Cool idea, but the market for it would be pretty small. I would not spend money on a bike with no practical use where I live, even though it looks great.
    I got some bad ideas in my head.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleCentury View Post
    Did that myself. WTB rollercams in 2017 (with 29 inch wheels).

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I did something similar, but less on your Grail-like scale. This is also a 29er.
    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-img_2658.jpg

  5. #5
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    As long as I didn't have to give up on 29er wheels? Sure.

    Actually, gives me an idea.

    29+, retro build. Hmm.

    No money this year, (damn hernia surgery), it'll have to wait.....
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  6. #6
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    Yes. I really wasn't interested in a 90's geared frame with NORBA geometry or disc brakes. The parts hung on her are completely different now, but still classy.

    ETA- The other frame.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-90006d1455671772-coconino-element-20160215_121811-1-.jpg  

    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by Vader; 12-20-2017 at 08:31 PM.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    I did something similar, but less on your Grail-like scale. This is also a 29er.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    that is one awesome looking bike
    always mad and usually drunk......

  8. #8
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    I believe in most cases it would not make sense. Modern and new bikes are expensive but you get better geometry, lighter materials etc. If I would give out a lot of money on a new bike I would buy something modern, fast and agile. There are probably some examples of cool looking retro-style bikes such as the bike above but at what cost? For me it would then make more sense to get an older frame and build it up with modern components. Or combine old and new components. An old (rare) 90's steel frame with some 29" wheels gives me more pleasure then a "replica" kind off mass produced frame.
    Don't get me wrong, love retro looks, have more retro bikes then "modern" ones. But why spending a lot of money when you can get it cheaper and more nostalgic.

    PS. I sure do love the looks of that green bike above

  9. #9
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    Geometry is so different now. Do you mean vintage geometry as well? 71 /73 angles? 120 /130 stems? 41.5in wheelbase? Yeah.. i would. As long as it has a rigid fork.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    As long as I didn't have to give up on 29er wheels? Sure.

    Actually, gives me an idea.

    29+, retro build. Hmm.

    No money this year, (damn hernia surgery), it'll have to wait.....
    I will throw all my money on a gall bladder surgery. Itīs my xtmas time.
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  11. #11
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    Hmm - that's an interesting thought, Flavio. Long stems are pretty much custom items now, so I think that battle has been lost. I don't think I'd really pay money today for 1 inch threaded steerers either.

  12. #12
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    I have wanted to do a modern retro build for a while now. I love the Gallus in your post. I would want disc brakes, a short stem, slack geometry and 27.5+ wheels though. Technically 650b and slack geometry are vintage.

    When I can gather the funds I intend on having a retro klunker custom made.
    The Truth will set you free.

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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    29+, retro build. Hmm.

    No money this year, (damn hernia surgery), it'll have to wait.....
    Hernia? Yeah, there's an ad for those heavy 29er+ bikes.



    Seriously, ouch, sorry to hear it, and hope all's going good with the recovery.

    Grumps

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    he angle I'm after is more along the lines of given your interest in, and likely baptism by a now vintage ride, is there a place in your fleet for a non-vintage, vintage-style bike? And, if so, would you spend real money to make it happen?
    Yes. Because I get bored and like to tinker with stuff. A vintage style frame with rim brakes and thumbies but with 27.5" wheels has an appeal.

    Alternatively, no, because there's a lot of vintage frames to build up and enjoy that deserve a new lease of life.

    I have enough projects now before I go designing something specific but my mind does wander to such project ideas.

    Grumps

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    29+, retro build. Hmm.

    No money this year, (damn hernia surgery), it'll have to wait.....
    Sorry to hear about this. You're close enough, wish I could make you an honorary Canadian...

    Most of the push back I get on this seems to come from current bike industry friends, so I'm particularly interested in your take. When I worked in shops we were the taste makers and our best customers wanted to put their own personal spin on what we were doing. You could tell what shop folks frequented by their rides and the best shops were the ones that moved farthest from the corporate bike industry model.

    That doesn't seem to be the way anymore...

    I remember the era of the do-it-all MTB (it's a tourer, it's a racer, it's a commuter) fondly and the betrayal on the faces of folks bringing in the pooched Quadra 21r - that the industry forced on them - after 9 months of dirty commuter life. Those people are now in peak earning years.

    Is it nostalgia if the old tool works 75% as well 95% of the time? Is there really no market for a - admittedly slightly-tweaked - throwback MTB?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Sorry to hear about this. You're close enough, wish I could make you an honorary Canadian...

    Most of the push back I get on this seems to come from current bike industry friends, so I'm particularly interested in your take. When I worked in shops we were the taste makers and our best customers wanted to put their own personal spin on what we were doing. You could tell what shop folks frequented by their rides and the best shops were the ones that moved farthest from the corporate bike industry model.

    That doesn't seem to be the way anymore...

    I remember the era of the do-it-all MTB (it's a tourer, it's a racer, it's a commuter) fondly and the betrayal on the faces of folks bringing in the pooched Quadra 21r - that the industry forced on them - after 9 months of dirty commuter life. Those people are now in peak earning years.

    Is it nostalgia if the old tool works 75% as well 95% of the time? Is there really no market for a - admittedly slightly-tweaked - throwback MTB?
    I think there is. However, with economies of scale, it's tough to get anybody to keep producing 26" tires which is the real problem with a 26" throwback mtb. But with the other wheel sizes, the slightly modernized steel frames retro look is going strong with handmade framemakers in the US. It'll cost you but they're doing it. And they're gorgeous. I like what monkeywrench did with those Potts 650b that it offered. You don't have to be an absolute purist in the sense that you would do a threaded steerer, 130-140mm stem, or room for 1.9 tires to be vintage inspired, IMHO.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Hmm - that's an interesting thought, Flavio. Long stems are pretty much custom items now, so I think that battle has been lost. I don't think I'd really pay money today for 1 inch threaded steerers either.

    Hmmm.. Seems 1in threaded is more forgiving than oversized ahead systems. If i am not using suspension, i could go w/ 1in threaded and a custom stem/ bar set up.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by girlonbike View Post
    I think there is. However, with economies of scale, it's tough to get anybody to keep producing 26" tires which is the real problem with a 26" throwback mtb. But with the other wheel sizes, the slightly modernized steel frames retro look is going strong with handmade framemakers in the US. It'll cost you but they're doing it. And they're gorgeous. I like what monkeywrench did with those Potts 650b that it offered. You don't have to be an absolute purist in the sense that you would do a threaded steerer, 130-140mm stem, or room for 1.9 tires to be vintage inspired, IMHO.
    Donīt forget the demise of rims made for rim braking. How vintage is a disc brake bicycle?
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    Donīt forget the demise of rims made for rim braking. How vintage is a disc brake bicycle?
    plenty vintage, actually.

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-92mtncyclead.jpg
    ca 1992
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  20. #20
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    I live where the trails are mostly hard-packed dirt and gravel. Not many trees or bouncy/bumpy roots as MTBing back east where I'm from, so I get by just fine on a '90s rigid MTB.

    So yes, I'd buy one, in principle.

    However, I could go buy a new Surly Long Haul Trucker with 26" wheels and rim brakes, but I don't.

    I would rather ride an older rigid MTB for low cost, yes, but also for the fun of finding them on craigslist, keeping an old bike running well - sort of like the old car guys, but so much cheaper and easier - and for, I've gotta admit, the "cool factor", which may only exist in my head, but it does exist.

  21. #21
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    That's exactly my opinion too. Saving an old mtb from the junkyard for less money is a lot more fun.

  22. #22
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    Has to be a good reproduction of a classic ride, why would I waste my money on a retro something or other? Give me that Breezer I should have bought in 93 or a RM Altitude, or go back to the 85-87 Stumpy Team and I'm all in.

    STILL can't get used to this crazy new-fangled RM Element I bought a couple of years ago. How do you guys get used to all that wiggle in the back end?!!

    oh yeah, almost forgot. 26 or die! (grin)
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squeeze View Post
    I live where the trails are mostly hard-packed dirt and gravel. Not many trees or bouncy/bumpy roots as MTBing back east where I'm from, so I get by just fine on a '90s rigid MTB.

    So yes, I'd buy one, in principle.

    However, I could go buy a new Surly Long Haul Trucker with 26" wheels and rim brakes, but I don't.

    I would rather ride an older rigid MTB for low cost, yes, but also for the fun of finding them on craigslist, keeping an old bike running well - sort of like the old car guys, but so much cheaper and easier - and for, I've gotta admit, the "cool factor", which may only exist in my head, but it does exist.
    Thatīs how i feel except:
    i like east coast type trails on east coast vintage bikes.
    That surly is a tank.

    Everything else is my exact mindset.
    Not to mention how easy on the eyes are old school paint schemes.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockychrysler View Post
    plenty vintage, actually.

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    ca 1992
    Bah

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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    I will throw all my money on a gall bladder surgery. Itīs my xtmas time.
    Oh lovely, hope that recovery is less hassle than mine!!
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Grumpy View Post
    Hernia? Yeah, there's an ad for those heavy 29er+ bikes.
    Nice..... :P

    Thanks, all better now, but a month off the bike got pretty old.

    Glad it's done but don't recommend it to anyone looking for a good time!
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Sorry to hear about this. You're close enough, wish I could make you an honorary Canadian...
    The whole experience was eye opening to someone who hasn't been in the hospital for much of anything since their kid was born 20+ years ago...

    I'd have taken you up on that in a heartbeat were it possible, our system sucks soooo bad. Don't be fooled by the misty eyed bullsh*t about us having the best medical system in the world!

    The industry has gotten much bigger, and greedier. As such, most shops seem to have gone the way of becoming "brand centers", and since they now have inventory crammed down their throats, and are then told how much they have to sell it for, or face the consequences, the groms who staff the floor, are all commissioned, and are taught one thing, sell, new, bikes, at all cost.

    I think there are still enthusiast/tuner/independent shops out there (mine included) but you need to seek them out, and find the one that works for you.

    I'm happy to build you the latest in full sus Fatbikes, or work with you to build that Richard Sachs CX frame with all vintage Campy lovingly sourced over the last 10 years, or, anything in between.

    Just met a guy who runs a shop in downtown, that focuses on city and commuter rigs. Sells Surly and Rivendell, plus a few Euro city brands. Loves a good project.

    We're out there.

    But yeah, the *industry* doesn't care much about passion or individuality anymore, they only count units and SKU's, and try to keep their corporate overlords appeased, I feel for them.....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  28. #28
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    Surlys are super heavy. And they don't feel all that great compared to ANY of my vintage bikes - and this is just commuting on pavement/light dirt roads. Must be horrendous on actual dirt. I got one and got rid of it within 6 months. I doubt I would get another. They look alright though.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    I will throw all my money on a gall bladder surgery. Itīs my xtmas time.
    It's fun, I did that this year... except mine was all free. Trip to emergency with Jaundice included, woot.
    All the gear and no idea.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    Donīt forget the demise of rims made for rim braking. How vintage is a disc brake bicycle?
    I have some ceramic rims stashed, but in reality, there's enough Sun Ryno Lytes left out there to last the rest of my life. It's not the most sexy choice, but it's totally practical.

    Disc tabs on frames and the IS brake standard rolled out around 2001.
    Ripping trails and tipping ales

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by girlonbike View Post
    Surlys are super heavy. And they don't feel all that great compared to ANY of my vintage bikes - and this is just commuting on pavement/light dirt roads. Must be horrendous on actual dirt. I got one and got rid of it within 6 months. I doubt I would get another. They look alright though.
    Man, beating on the *little* guy that still loves steel (in a world filled with plastic shite), what the hell forum did I find myself in???

    Don't know about you, but 5 Surlys out last night (3: fat, 2: 29+), and I heard nary a lick of complaint, nor was anyone so far behind, or slow, that they didn't have huge grins.

    I smell some princess and the pea going on..... =:P

    How many Surlys can one buy and regularly abuse the crap out of, for the cost of a Potts, Moots, Fat, et al, too?
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by mik_git View Post
    It's fun, I did that this year... except mine was all free. Trip to emergency with Jaundice included, woot.
    I tried the free one but you are supposed to be on the verge of dying of septicemia to apply here otherwise itīs not urgent enough.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Man, beating on the *little* guy that still loves steel (in a world filled with plastic shite), what the hell forum did I find myself in???

    Don't know about you, but 5 Surlys out last night (3: fat, 2: 29+), and I heard nary a lick of complaint, nor was anyone so far behind, or slow, that they didn't have huge grins.

    I smell some princess and the pea going on..... =:P

    How many Surlys can one buy and regularly abuse the crap out of, for the cost of a Potts, Moots, Fat, et al, too?
    well.. there are options in between like Soma, All City, velo orange, Salsa(they change their line up all the time so i donīt know) and Ritchey.
    Some people love their Surlys and some think of them as the thick oversize side of steel.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    I have some ceramic rims stashed, but in reality, there's enough Sun Ryno Lytes left out there to last the rest of my life. It's not the most sexy choice, but it's totally practical.

    Disc tabs on frames and the IS brake standard rolled out around 2001.
    Now we need to find tires to survive till some genius decides to ressurrect the 26in.

    Why did the industry decide to kill the 26in is beyond logic when you know that the main game now is fat x really fat. Does it matter if your wheel is 26 x 3.0 or 27.5 x 2.6?
    Everyone who was happy to get the world rid of the 26in now has to buy another frame w/clearances for 3.0 tires and the new disc brake standard.
    The obsolescence in the mtb world is stupid.
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  35. #35
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    I finally broke the dropout on my Crosscheck almost exactly a year ago after commuting and off-roadin' on the steel beast.

    Thought quite a few times about getting a true off-road rig from them but it wasn't just weight penalty I didn't like. I can live with that, but after getting a Soma for the road and noticing the ride quality was light years ahead that ended my idea of any regular bike from them, the only thing I would consider is a phat bike since they basically brought them to the market.

    Moots, you said it. I'll take a new Moots with 650b or have them make a custom 26" Ybb over a Surly, Salsa, or any other modern production ride, of course Steve Potts works just as well. Depending on the amount and style of riding I suspect one would never break a Moots, unlike my Surly.
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

  36. #36
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    As far as retro goes, this tickles my fancy. I fell in love with bicycles for the third time in my life when I found fat bikes. The first time was when I bought a brand new yellow Mongoose frame in the late 70's. The second was when I bought my first mountain bike (a Raleigh Technium). I could see getting one of these to play on.

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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by girlonbike View Post
    I like what monkeywrench did with those Potts 650b that it offered.
    Monkeywrench was a real eye-opener when I visited in the fall. They were prepping a Potts for sale to be shipped to a second home in Canada, then on to the customer's real home in China. They offer an industry-bucking product that focuses on hand-craft/core values over high-tech/innovation and found a global audience.
    Their business and brand are synonymous with vintage and business is good.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    The industry has gotten much bigger, and greedier. As such, most shops seem to have gone the way of becoming "brand centers", and since they now have inventory crammed down their throats, and are then told how much they have to sell it for, or face the consequences, the groms who staff the floor, are all commissioned, and are taught one thing, sell, new, bikes, at all cost.

    But yeah, the *industry* doesn't care much about passion or individuality anymore, they only count units and SKU's, and try to keep their corporate overlords appeased, I feel for them.....
    30/60/90 manufacturer terms meshed with earlier and earlier product delivery pretty much sunk the shop I worked in. Real hard for northern climate shops to make that 60 day payment when there's still snow on the ground... Big brands seem even more obsessed with model-year revolution over innovation and tech-shaming their best customers.

    As a fetishist, it's been weird to watch the special-ness of top-end bikes be diminished by the industry and the rise of in-house component sub-brands. The last hold-out seemed to be cross, but the industry has caught up and even that is now dominated by out-of-the-box rides.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    I smell some princess and the pea going on..... =:P
    Ha! Surly's are farm-equipment tough. There is some awesome mid-western sensibility built into every one.

    pvd - who used to hang out here - had a scathing blog post about the fashion for stout 70's style bikes a couple of years ago. I don't completely agree, but absolutely see his point. Progress the eternal devil to by vintage-loving angel.

    https://www.peterverdone.com/garbage-pail-bikes/

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    30/60/90 manufacturer terms meshed with earlier and earlier product delivery pretty much sunk the shop I worked in. Real hard for northern climate shops to make that 60 day payment when there's still snow on the ground... Big brands seem even more obsessed with model-year revolution over innovation and tech-shaming their best customers.

    As a fetishist, it's been weird to watch the special-ness of top-end bikes be diminished by the industry and the rise of in-house component sub-brands. The last hold-out seemed to be cross, but the industry has caught up and even that is now dominated by out-of-the-box rides.
    That is why i would be good w/ a threaded 1" steerer, a nitto stem and friction shifters. Just for the cool aspect i would sink my money in such a bike and otoh i know it works and covers my needs.
    I remember a review of the first Rivendell all rounder, before they even had the Atlantis.. There was a pic of the bike being ridden down a trail drop, sporting road drop bars. I would like to have a bike like that... an All Rounder, done in all the glorious 70/ 80s tech.
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    A Rivendell Hunqapillar fits the criteria.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Man, beating on the *little* guy that still loves steel (in a world filled with plastic shite), what the hell forum did I find myself in???

    Don't know about you, but 5 Surlys out last night (3: fat, 2: 29+), and I heard nary a lick of complaint, nor was anyone so far behind, or slow, that they didn't have huge grins.

    I smell some princess and the pea going on..... =:P

    How many Surlys can one buy and regularly abuse the crap out of, for the cost of a Potts, Moots, Fat, et al, too?
    My comment was a steel vs steel comparison, not steel vs ti. I would get a salsa before a surly but that's just me, the princess.

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    I always wondered what a Quadangle from SE would be like off-road now that they make a 26" version. That Ripper is sure one interesting bike.
    Good friction shifting is getting hard to find nowadays....

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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Ha! Surly's are farm-equipment tough. There is some awesome mid-western sensibility built into every one.

    pvd - who used to hang out here - had a scathing blog post about the fashion for stout 70's style bikes a couple of years ago. I don't completely agree, but absolutely see his point. Progress the eternal devil to by vintage-loving angel.

    https://www.peterverdone.com/garbage-pail-bikes/
    I believe he woke up on a bad day and wrote this post. There are people out there w/ many high end bikes who swear their custom rivs as their best ride.
    Steel forks are better than carbon in some aspects.
    The blog is wrong.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    I believe he woke up on a bad day and wrote this post.
    I think he takes his role as a contrarian very seriously... If I'm not mistaken, it got him banned from here.

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    I think he takes his role as a contrarian very seriously... If I'm not mistaken, it got him banned from here.
    Itīs a good thing to question trends. Trends can be annoying most of all because they are irrational. otoh he is making up most of whatīs written there. The first paragraph was promising and i thought it would be entertaing but itīs mostly BS.
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  47. #47
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    I think if you want an MTB or roadie and value superior ride characteristics, sure, Surly might not be the first choice for the weight game considerations, and they've never apologized for that. Of course, Surly shoppers aren't likely to be be fine tubeset appreciators anyway!

    However, they make a broad range of products that put durability and versatility first, and not too many other companies do that, and if they do, it's some quaint offering that sits at the back of the catalog so they can proudly cluck that they checked that box...

    Soma et al make cool stuff too, but often make them more use specific.

    All depends on how you ride, and what matters. Got a crap ton of customers who are tickled pink by their Surly's, and when they break after many years of abuse, well, they still make a frame that will accept all your old parts, just like they did when you built it the first time.

    I also like that they don't force feed me inventory. I can be a stocking dealer if I want, or, onesie twosie. Not too many companies left that do that, so, kudos to them for it.

    I'd also agree, the pace of development is killing the industry. Everything is expected to be all new, all the time, and it's just pointless to pursue that, as eventually, consumers will catch onto the shell game.

    26" death? It's a shame they dropped it like a hot potato, I guess the rapid development idea no longer allows space for old product support, which used to be a hallmark of a good company, Chris King comes to mind for that.

    While I don't ride them anymore, it's a royal PITA when a good customer comes in looking for a decent 26" tire, or rim, only to find they have no options beyond basic entry level stuff anymore.
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  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by unicrown junkie View Post
    I always wondered what a Quadangle from SE would be like off-road now that they make a 26" version. That Ripper is sure one interesting bike.
    Back when I rode Mongoose and Little Johns, the Ripper (20") was one of the super bikes. The Quadangle is wicked cool, too.
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    Trek Sawyer is likely as close as you can get in a production bike.

    https://archive.trekbikes.com/us/en/...sawyer/details

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-trek-garyfisher.jpeg

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by girlonbike View Post
    Surlys are super heavy. And they don't feel all that great compared to ANY of my vintage bikes - and this is just commuting on pavement/light dirt roads. Must be horrendous on actual dirt. I got one and got rid of it within 6 months. I doubt I would get another. They look alright though.
    What model did you have?
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  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    I think if you want an MTB or roadie and value superior ride characteristics, sure, Surly might not be the first choice for the weight game considerations, and they've never apologized for that. Of course, Surly shoppers aren't likely to be be fine tubeset appreciators anyway!

    However, they make a broad range of products that put durability and versatility first, and not too many other companies do that, and if they do, it's some quaint offering that sits at the back of the catalog so they can proudly cluck that they checked that box...

    Soma et al make cool stuff too, but often make them more use specific.

    All depends on how you ride, and what matters. Got a crap ton of customers who are tickled pink by their Surly's, and when they break after many years of abuse, well, they still make a frame that will accept all your old parts, just like they did when you built it the first time.

    I also like that they don't force feed me inventory. I can be a stocking dealer if I want, or, onesie twosie. Not too many companies left that do that, so, kudos to them for it.

    I'd also agree, the pace of development is killing the industry. Everything is expected to be all new, all the time, and it's just pointless to pursue that, as eventually, consumers will catch onto the shell game.

    26" death? It's a shame they dropped it like a hot potato, I guess the rapid development idea no longer allows space for old product support, which used to be a hallmark of a good company, Chris King comes to mind for that.

    While I don't ride them anymore, it's a royal PITA when a good customer comes in looking for a decent 26" tire, or rim, only to find they have no options beyond basic entry level stuff anymore.
    I said a couple yrs ago here in vrc: i was so sick w/ how 26" was killed on basic stupidity that i would only invest in a cx and give up on mountain bikes. For other reasons, a lot of people seems to have adopted the same direction and look now at gravel and monster cross to ride on trails. A bike is also about style.
    I could not care less for the differences between enduro, trail, downhill or xc bikes that cost 5k(or 10) and will be outdated/trashed in 3yrs. Who rides those things? The mtb scene has no style anymore. It is dead already and they donīt know it yet. MOuntain biking was a fad killed by itīs own obsession w/ tech, suspension and wheel size. Good riddance. Do you want planned obsolesence? Here you are now.. obsolete.
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  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slash5 View Post
    Trek Sawyer is likely as close as you can get in a production bike.

    https://archive.trekbikes.com/us/en/...sawyer/details

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Thatīs not old school.. thatīs just trying hard to be cool.
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  53. #53
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    There are a lot of vintage mountain bikes on the used market. This would be a new bike's competition, especially since the used bikes easily be found for around $100 around me.

    I'd personally just buy a vintage bike, not a new vintage style bike.

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    I wouldn't pay for a new one when they are cheap for an actual retro/vintage bike. Good quality, well built and dirt cheap because they are outdated/out of style.

  55. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Something that has been on my mind for a long time. Would you buy - or even better, have you commissioned - a brand new, vintage-style mountain bike? Retro-modding is fine (not a slavish reproduction), but something that hits all the hallmarks: rigid (+non-corrected), thumb shifters and rim brakes.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion. The angle I'm after is more along the lines of given your interest in, and likely baptism by a now vintage ride, is there a place in your fleet for a non-vintage, vintage-style bike? And, if so, would you spend real money to make it happen?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Yep.

    In fact, though I still ride every one of my vintage bikes on east coast NORBA trails and and my favorite rides remain my JTS and ‘Ham Racer, this is my “go to” bike.

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-0cd9ca29-bc3e-443c-adae-344f61024ae0.jpg

    I had it built to fit and ride exactly like my favorites and I don’t have to worry about damaging something irreplaceable.
    Wanted: more of the same ... but different

  56. #56
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    I was just thinking about this the other day. My current 2 favorite bikes are an early Surly 1x1 non disc and a '95[approx] Specialized Rockhopper, both full rigid. I ride everything around my area I want to ride with them, only thing I wish might be different would be a higher gear on the Rockhopper and maybe a slacker head tube angle for drop offs. I would really think about buying a new Rockhopper with an aheadset and 8 or 9 speed cassette and maybe a slightly slacker head tube angle and a little taller headtube. If I could get a new Rockhopper the exact way mine is now with fresh wheels and drivetrain I'd probably do that also.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slash5 View Post
    Trek
    You lost me at Trek.
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by colker1 View Post
    Mountain biking was a fad killed by itīs own obsession w/ tech, suspension and wheel size.
    It's more insidious than that.

    It's money.

    The pressure for constant growth of an industry that creates (what used to be at least) goods that folks would buy every 5 to 10 years? No wonder they used to let a *speed* run for 5 to 10 years before adding one, they understood the relative purchasing patterns of the majority of it's customer base.

    They'd change up colors, graphics, maybe a spec or two, and save dough by not reinventing the whole line, pretty much every year like what's done now.

    GROWTH GROWTH GROWTH!!!! If you aren't growing you're dying. It's such utter, contemptible bullsh$t.

    God forbid any brand miss *the next big thing*, so they are all chasing each other around copy catting, rather than just hanging, out maybe passing a joint or a flask around on an after work staff rip through the local trails, coming up with their own spin on what a bike should be. They forgot not all consumers want a bike that looks like and acts like, every other brands bikes.

    Frankly, the wheel size thing is what the industry has always done.

    Rocky Mountain used to have I believe, 3 totally different suspension designs in their line. BMX was 20", but then dirt jumpers kinda blurred the lines. Look how long it took everyone to have a CX bike vs how long it took every brand to have a $1000 650B HT. No one can fart without everyone adding one to their lineup within a season.

    Seeing and trying things differently is what gave us all sorts of cool stuff.

    I love 29+, as much as I loved 29 when it came out (all over again).

    Fat bikes made me realize how nice that high volume low pressure tire was for control, speed, etc.

    I don't hate them for coming out with weird stuff, that's what a unique, niche industry should be doing.

    Force feeding ever increasing volumes of inventory down consumers throats because the board needs to see 15% growth this year in order for the CEO to get his bonus? Now there's your problem.
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  59. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPL65 View Post
    I was just thinking about this the other day. My current 2 favorite bikes are an early Surly 1x1 non disc and a '95[approx] Specialized Rockhopper, both full rigid. I ride everything around my area I want to ride with them, only thing I wish might be different would be a higher gear on the Rockhopper and maybe a slacker head tube angle for drop offs. I would really think about buying a new Rockhopper with an aheadset and 8 or 9 speed cassette and maybe a slightly slacker head tube angle and a little taller headtube. If I could get a new Rockhopper the exact way mine is now with fresh wheels and drivetrain I'd probably do that also.
    Around ten years ago, Ventana made +4mm and +7mm Chris King crown races.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    Around ten years ago, Ventana made +4mm and +7mm Chris King crown races.
    How do these work, and what do they do for you? Are they still available?

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    Quote Originally Posted by JPL65 View Post
    How do these work, and what do they do for you? Are they still available?
    They were originally designed to provide clearance between fork top caps and down tubes. Ventana quit making them when King started making them. I suppose you could get a .5 degree change in head tube angle with the taller race.

    ETA King still sells a +5 race in both 1" and 1 1/8"
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    On second thought. I might consider a retro'ish hardtail, with a better fork, a threadless headset and stem.. Something retro with parts I can find easily. For a goof around bike it might be cool.

  63. #63
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    I thought I'd toss this up onto this thread. I bought this after peeking over an old bosses shoulder while they were looking at the Handsome site. (They sold a ton of Handsome Devils at the time. Nice bike, like a livelier Crosscheck probably due to the Reynolds 631 as much as anything else.)

    It's an homage to a '93 XO-1, 26" wheels, 1" threaded fork, etc. I thought that it would be a commuter that would make sense for me, as I could leverage all the extra VRC stuff I've accumulated. It's road angles, with mountain clearance so not really stictly speaking an MTB. But close enough ...

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-xoxo-08-24-13-001.jpg

    Those are 26x1.25" Paselas. It has clearance for 2.1's.
    Don't call it a gooseneck.

  64. #64
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    Quick answer is NO.
    I do have a 1997 ubber V that I built as a commuter. I do love the look of the old Ritchey and Klien bikes.
    Getting something like a P29 would be doable, but is still not my style.
    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-ritchey-p-29erbuilt-3.jpg
    Making shit harder than it needs to be isn't awesome, it's just...harder.

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    Does anyone own a Surly Troll? How close to a new retro ride would you say it is?

  66. #66
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    Post forward: I just read through this whole thread. I'm not really sure what it's about as it seems to have organically drifted quite a bit. Hopefully whatever drift I may induce contributes in a useful and not annoying way.

    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Everything is expected to be all new, all the time, and it's just pointless to pursue that, as eventually, consumers will catch onto the shell game.
    Serious question: will they? I mean, the "innovation acceleration" (to coin the term, maybe?) has probably been going on in a serious way for, what, 15 years? Maybe not-so-coincidentally with normal access to the interwebz being something other than AOL for most people.

    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    Look how long it took everyone to have a CX bike vs how long it took every brand to have a $1000 650B HT.
    Yeah, great point. I wonder how much this has to do with trends spreading faster from the internet, as I postulated above, and how much it has to do with just general growth of the industry.

    (I may be getting dates a little wrong here, but frankly, I'm not feeling compelled to look this stuff up right now. That said... ) IIRC, around 20-25 years ago, mid-90s, the industry was booming with mountain bikes. It was a new trend. Just not nearly as segmented as the trends are today. CX was this weird thing that'd been around forever, but no major brands made them. Then a couple of brands made them, but they were still very much oddball offerings.

    Nowadays, it's not a major trend like plain olde mountain bikes that's sustaining the industry, it's every little variation. Hell, the 650b+ route is one thing, but think about how much sillier this is over on the road side: all around race bike, climbing bike, aero bike, endurance bike. Really? I mean, any of these are way more similar than any silly trend in mountain biking is to another.

    Ok, enough rambling for now. Again, I've hoped to contribute something here in a respectful way, not trying to contradict anyone if it comes across that way.

  67. #67
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    I ride a '99 Rockhopper and enjoy riding it and working on it as much as my modern Bianchi 29ee

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  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feldybikes View Post
    Post forward: I just read through this whole thread. I'm not really sure what it's about as it seems to have organically drifted quite a bit. Hopefully whatever drift I may induce contributes in a useful and not annoying way.



    Serious question: will they? I mean, the "innovation acceleration" (to coin the term, maybe?) has probably been going on in a serious way for, what, 15 years? Maybe not-so-coincidentally with normal access to the interwebz being something other than AOL for most people.



    Yeah, great point. I wonder how much this has to do with trends spreading faster from the internet, as I postulated above, and how much it has to do with just general growth of the industry.

    (I may be getting dates a little wrong here, but frankly, I'm not feeling compelled to look this stuff up right now. That said... ) IIRC, around 20-25 years ago, mid-90s, the industry was booming with mountain bikes. It was a new trend. Just not nearly as segmented as the trends are today. CX was this weird thing that'd been around forever, but no major brands made them. Then a couple of brands made them, but they were still very much oddball offerings.

    Nowadays, it's not a major trend like plain olde mountain bikes that's sustaining the industry, it's every little variation. Hell, the 650b+ route is one thing, but think about how much sillier this is over on the road side: all around race bike, climbing bike, aero bike, endurance bike. Really? I mean, any of these are way more similar than any silly trend in mountain biking is to another.

    Ok, enough rambling for now. Again, I've hoped to contribute something here in a respectful way, not trying to contradict anyone if it comes across that way.
    I see a trend for all around road bikes> discs so you can get also cheap carbon rims w/ no brake tracks, 700x30mm tires and anything you throw at this formula.
    Also: mountain bikes need to be cheaper. 1k should be the standard for a shimano deore bike
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  69. #69
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    "Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?"
    No.

  70. #70
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    simple is better.

    why not-its about bicycling not posing.look at Kawasaki's "new" z900RS.bicycle manuf.'s are going to great lengths to find new gimmicks,wheel size,sprocket size,etc. to keep $$$ cash flow. Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-p5pb11954431.jpg Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-0.jpg

  71. #71
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    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?

    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Something that has been on my mind for a long time. Would you buy - or even better, have you commissioned - a brand new, vintage-style mountain bike? Retro-modding is fine (not a slavish reproduction), but something that hits all the hallmarks: rigid (+non-corrected), thumb shifters and rim brakes.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion. The angle I'm after is more along the lines of given your interest in, and likely baptism by a now vintage ride, is there a place in your fleet for a non-vintage, vintage-style bike? And, if so, would you spend real money to make it happen?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?
    Me: No.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion.
    Me: But that is precisely why I wouldn't, but I digress (sort of)...

    What I really find interesting is how this morphed in an "industry sucks" thread, how we're force fed innovation and slaves to corporate growth. That's hilarious to me on many levels!

    My main question to these "everything sucks" in the industry people is: Are you saying you want to be buying yesteryears bike new today? If so, why? Riding an old bike is a legitimate desire, but you can still buy that old 26" rigid steel bike used, cheaper than ever. You can find them curbside on recycling day all across the country for free. So buy them, rescue them, parts are all over the internet, ride them to your hearts content. Why make the new old stuff now? Or limit innovation to a 5 year cycle?

    And as far as retro-mods are concerned, the bottom line is that's pure fashion. Vintage is as much fashion as anything modern is. You want an old looking bike that performs like a modern bike, I'm not questioning the legitimacy of that idea either, but plenty of that stuff is available in today's "everything sucks" industry to fill that niche. Granted, it won't be made by Specialized, Giant or any other big brand, but isn't that the whole point of wanting something unique?

    And for those complaining about the lack of new 26" tires... you're telling me the limiting factor in the performance of your old bike is the tires?! The lowest end new 26" tire from Schwalbe, Maxxis, Kenda and the rest of them is still WAY better than anything that came on your old bike, or was available in the few years that followed.

    I'd even argue that you get more for your money in today's "everything sucks" industry than you ever did in the past. I still have a 1992 Trek 8000, I also have a 2016 Trek Stache 5. The "8000" was a little over $1000 new, corrected for inflation, that's over $1700 in buying power today which easily buys the Stache 5. In any measurable way, the Stache is so much better it's comical to even make the comparison!

    Lastly, when you're someone (like me) that actually wants some new, innovated or even "re-invented" stuff like bigger wheels, tubeless, 1X drive-trains, dropper posts or suspension design, travel/dampening for just about any trail you can imagine, there's actually a pretty good chance you'll get it. Which is pretty nice...

    Of course there's going to be growing pains in "standards" and corporate greed. But that's more vintage Americana than any steel lugged frame you could ever hope to find.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by krka73 View Post
    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?
    Me: No.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion.
    Me: But that is precisely why I wouldn't, but I digress (sort of)...

    What I really find interesting is how this morphed in an "industry sucks" thread, how we're force fed innovation and slaves to corporate growth. That's hilarious to me on many levels!

    My main question to these "everything sucks" in the industry people is: Are you saying you want to be buying yesteryears bike new today? If so, why? Riding an old bike is a legitimate desire, but you can still buy that old 26" rigid steel bike used, cheaper than ever. You can find them curbside on recycling day all across the country for free. So buy them, rescue them, parts are all over the internet, ride them to your hearts content. Why make the new old stuff now? Or limit innovation to a 5 year cycle?

    And as far as retro-mods are concerned, the bottom line is that's pure fashion. Vintage is as much fashion as anything modern is. You want an old looking bike that performs like a modern bike, I'm not questioning the legitimacy of that idea either, but plenty of that stuff is available in today's "everything sucks" industry to fill that niche. Granted, it won't be made by Specialized, Giant or any other big brand, but isn't that the whole point of wanting something unique?

    And for those complaining about the lack of new 26" tires... you're telling me the limiting factor in the performance of your old bike is the tires?! The lowest end new 26" tire from Schwalbe, Maxxis, Kenda and the rest of them is still WAY better than anything that came on your old bike, or was available in the few years that followed.

    I'd even argue that you get more for your money in today's "everything sucks" industry than you ever did in the past. I still have a 1992 Trek 8000, I also have a 2016 Trek Stache 5. The "8000" was a little over $1000 new, corrected for inflation, that's over $1700 in buying power today which easily buys the Stache 5. In any measurable way, the Stache is so much better it's comical to even make the comparison!

    Lastly, when you're someone (like me) that actually wants some new, innovated or even "re-invented" stuff like bigger wheels, tubeless, 1X drive-trains, dropper posts or suspension design, travel/dampening for just about any trail you can imagine, there's actually a pretty good chance you'll get it. Which is pretty nice...

    Of course there's going to be growing pains in "standards" and corporate greed. But that's more vintage Americana than any steel lugged frame you could ever hope to find.
    I believe you misunderstood some of the posts here. What was said was the industry threw away standards and let custommers dry. Once you sell a machine you are supposed to support the owner when parts need to be replaced. Nevermind a bicycle which is an expensive machine which bonds w/ the owner and took him time to chose and adapt to his daily use. Thatīs the main criticism.
    NO one is saying a vintage bike is better. The OP made sure it wasnīt about this but certain aspects only which are just ... different and could be recreated on a new one; like geometry.
    As for tires and rims... some people seem to have access to magic shops where itīs easy t find 26in stuff but a lot of people are left without. Thatīs my experience.
    On another tangent we had a testimony of a shop owner who sees how some big companies force the shop to treat mountain bikes as disposable cliches to be sold at a fast rate. I subscribe to his view that shops should encorage owners to treat and repurpopse thier old bikes instead of telling them itīs less of a hastle to buy new, light, shinny. Bicicycles are more than rationalizing a new toy.. there is joy in keeping an old machine working that is part of the ownerīs or ownerīs family history. Thatīs the main magic going on the LBS and not the discount on that Trek that is "better".
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  73. #73
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    Otoh; someone should build a Trimble like carbon bike w/ 29+ wheels and a 1x11 drivetrain. Make it a monster cross.
    WTB: Bomber Z2 1 1/8 steerer, in good to excellent shape OR bomber rebuild kit.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by krka73 View Post
    My main question to these "everything sucks" in the industry people


    Quote Originally Posted by krka73 View Post
    Vintage is as much fashion as anything modern is. You want an old looking bike that performs like a modern bike,
    Are you saying that people on here are buying, restoring and loving old bikes to be fashionable? Some might, but the overwhelming majority of people here see themselves as custodians of the bikes that are historically significant or were cool in their day and have a place in the MTB timeline. Some us ride them for the kick of riding the bikes that we rode when we were exploring our local trails and bringing back that vibe.

    Do I want an old looking bike that performs like a modern bike? No. But I could paint my Santa Cruz Bronson with splatter paint circa 1990 if I wanted I guess if I wanted something "old looking". I just want to be able to keep the dozen or so 26" bikes I own on the road and usable. Some of those bikes aren't that old, some of them are.

    Quote Originally Posted by krka73 View Post
    And for those complaining about the lack of new 26" tires... you're telling me the limiting factor in the performance of your old bike is the tires?!
    You telling me that some of these bikes are limited because of their age?

    Anyway, No, the limiting factor is not in the tyres. The limiting factor is going to be riding on the f**king rims when I can't get tyres. Actually, scratch that. The limiting factor is going to be riding on the f**king dropouts when I can't get rims.

    I take your point about the availability of tyres, at least for now. I hope to be able to fix them to the bike via rims so I'm hoarding lightweight, quality rim brake rims and wheels because I'd like to keep the really cool bikes I have on the road to enjoy.

    Those bikes, by the way, did not suck before 29 and 27.5 came along. I could rip it up on those bikes like there was no tomorrow and smile myself silly when I did it. The qualities of those bikes didn't change when something newer came on the market.

    Again, some of the 26" bikes I have aren't that old in terms of years, but obviously been made outdated because the industry has decided not to support the gazillions of 26" bikes out there, the sale of which clothed and fed them for the last couple of decades. I'm not opposed to new standards but gees, at least let me keep enjoying the damn things.

    Grumps

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    It's more insidious than that.

    It's money.

    The pressure for constant growth of an industry that creates (what used to be at least) goods that folks would buy every 5 to 10 years? No wonder they used to let a *speed* run for 5 to 10 years before adding one, they understood the relative purchasing patterns of the majority of it's customer base.

    They'd change up colors, graphics, maybe a spec or two, and save dough by not reinventing the whole line, pretty much every year like what's done now.

    GROWTH GROWTH GROWTH!!!! If you aren't growing you're dying. It's such utter, contemptible bullsh$t.

    God forbid any brand miss *the next big thing*, so they are all chasing each other around copy catting, rather than just hanging, out maybe passing a joint or a flask around on an after work staff rip through the local trails, coming up with their own spin on what a bike should be. They forgot not all consumers want a bike that looks like and acts like, every other brands bikes.

    Frankly, the wheel size thing is what the industry has always done.

    Rocky Mountain used to have I believe, 3 totally different suspension designs in their line. BMX was 20", but then dirt jumpers kinda blurred the lines. Look how long it took everyone to have a CX bike vs how long it took every brand to have a $1000 650B HT. No one can fart without everyone adding one to their lineup within a season.

    Seeing and trying things differently is what gave us all sorts of cool stuff.

    I love 29+, as much as I loved 29 when it came out (all over again).

    Fat bikes made me realize how nice that high volume low pressure tire was for control, speed, etc.

    I don't hate them for coming out with weird stuff, that's what a unique, niche industry should be doing.

    Force feeding ever increasing volumes of inventory down consumers throats because the board needs to see 15% growth this year in order for the CEO to get his bonus? Now there's your problem.
    This is modern capitalism and how the free market in the USA works. Read a great analysis the other day of how the US market has switched from cars to SUV's and how that switch was orchestrated. We buy what we are told to buy and not what we want to buy.
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  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Something that has been on my mind for a long time. Would you buy - or even better, have you commissioned - a brand new, vintage-style mountain bike? Retro-modding is fine (not a slavish reproduction), but something that hits all the hallmarks: rigid (+non-corrected), thumb shifters and rim brakes.

    I'm not really that interested in a "new bikes are way better" discussion. The angle I'm after is more along the lines of given your interest in, and likely baptism by a now vintage ride, is there a place in your fleet for a non-vintage, vintage-style bike? And, if so, would you spend real money to make it happen?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I would not spend real money to make it happen. The supply of vintage bikes seems to be plentiful and reasonably inexpensive, so if I am looking for another vintage ride there are ways to achieve that desire without breaking the bank. My attraction to vintage bikes are the memories they invoke of my days in the industry and the fun rides I had with friends back in the early days of mountain biking more than the actual ride quality. I appreciate the efforts many go to in order to preserve the history and I love to see the restorations and survivors, but am not inclined to have museum pieces around my own place (I feel the same about vintage muscle cars). The pleasure in the bragging rights that come with riding a vintage bike past people on modern bikes is outweighed these days by the enjoyment of the overall ride.

    I have found my happy place is the low cost and low maintenance of 5-10 year old hard tails and soft-tails with 9 speed drive trains, threaded bottom brackets, non-tapered steer tubes, and 29er wheels.

  77. #77
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    The best thing about living in this "modern age" is that we can mostly buy the bike that we want: vintage, retro, modern, or otherwise.

    I still like the look of older bikes, but prefer the performance of modern bikes (the last 10 years have brought about big improvements IMO). I'd consider a retro-look in a modern package. How retro vs modern would really depend on it's purpose. Rim brakes make sense for touring bikes where long-life pads and parts availability are more important than all-out performance. Same goes for most parts - use the part that meets it's purpose.

    I generally like what the industry is doing as far as introducing new options. However, I do miss the days of interchangable parts (I have MTBs with 130, 135, 142, 148, and 170 rear spacing, in addition to 26, 650b and 700c rims, so wheels often stay with the bike they were bought for.) I still prefer hardtails to full-suspension, although I own both; maybe that is retro?

    As far as the original question goes... My interpretation of retro may very well not match yours. The problem with "mass-produced retro" is that you needs to find a lot of people that agree on the version of retro that they want. Rivendell makes retro bikes right now, and although they sell, they're not a huge part of the market. If I wanted a retro-style bike I'd decide exactly what I wanted and find a frame builder to build what I want.
    Each bicycle owned exponentially increases the probability that none is working correctly.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by laffeaux View Post
    The best thing about living in this "modern age" is that we can mostly buy the bike that we want: vintage, retro, modern, or otherwise.

    I still like the look of older bikes, but prefer the performance of modern bikes (the last 10 years have brought about big improvements IMO). I'd consider a retro-look in a modern package. How retro vs modern would really depend on it's purpose. Rim brakes make sense for touring bikes where long-life pads and parts availability are more important than all-out performance. Same goes for most parts - use the part that meets it's purpose.

    I generally like what the industry is doing as far as introducing new options. However, I do miss the days of interchangable parts (I have MTBs with 130, 135, 142, 148, and 170 rear spacing, in addition to 26, 650b and 700c rims, so wheels often stay with the bike they were bought for.) I still prefer hardtails to full-suspension, although I own both; maybe that is retro?

    As far as the original question goes... My interpretation of retro may very well not match yours. The problem with "mass-produced retro" is that you needs to find a lot of people that agree on the version of retro that they want. Rivendell makes retro bikes right now, and although they sell, they're not a huge part of the market. If I wanted a retro-style bike I'd decide exactly what I wanted and find a frame builder to build what I want.
    You could say Jan Heine and BQ are also retro. You could say Richard Sachs is retro. They will tell you they are not. Sachs would tell you in no uncertain terms.
    The narrative is wrong imo. It should start like this.. americans made off road , non pavement riding, into a big thing. It used to be french, brittish(and japanese) w/ randounnering and audax. Americans invented performance riding in the woods and rocks of MOab, pennsilvania etc.. That sport opened a lot of possibilities for technological develpment brought from motocross and the aviation industry. Otoh, the main core of bicycle riding which is transportation, long hours in the saddle touring and riding for exercise and adventure, can still be done on machines which follow the french, japanese and brit technological time line. Some like Heine sees the return of low trail and a touring bag on the front rack way more important than the development of tapered steerers or the dozens of rear axle new standards. I believe randonneuring and all road riding to be the driving force in cycling and their bicycles are close in technology to vintage mountain bikes.
    i would not build a bicycle based on a Klein Attitude but i would happily order something from Peter Weigle as we speak if i had the $$ and time to wait. HIs bikes are the best tool for the job i have in mind which is at the front of the cycling avant garde. Way more relevant right now than a 27.5 plus carbon full suspension imo.
    Progress is not a simple thing. Itīs complex. Technology does not equal futuristic.. no one would tell you in the 60s that bicycles would be a transportation craze among adults.
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  79. #79
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    Me personally, I would not buy a new Vintage MTB. However, I do love a modern bike that has vintage aspects to it. The following bikes are what I would consider Modern Classics that have the performance/geometry of a modern bike but classic/distinct styling.

    Probably my favorite build is this:

    Shred on You Krusty Diamond: Travis T’s Falconer Throwback Machine | The Radavist

    I also really like these:

    ALL-CITY Cycle Electric Queen
    Sklar bikes, Retrotec Bikes, Oddity Cycles. Probably more I'm forgetting.

    Specialized did exactly what the OP was asking for back in 2007. They released the Stumpjumper Classic, I think 200 were built. Not sure how they sold, but I don't think they were flying out of the dealers showrooms, so that kinda tells you what people are willing to spend on a new Vintage MTB.

  80. #80
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    Answer: Yes
    Why: Because it's not a bike. It's a time machine. With every pedal stroke, and each bump transmitted through the bike and into my body, I feel jolted back to 1989, staring wistfully through the window of my LBS at the shiny ride I dreamed about, thumbing through the pages of MTB magazines, and laughing with my friends while feeling a freedom I may never know again. It is my temple.
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  81. #81
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    I went ahead and spent money on this sort of idea. My fatbike was broken and awaiting repair most of the year so my only trail bike was a Blacksheep Roots klunker frame. It was from James' annual production run of steel coaster brake, 29+/27.5+ cruiser style frames, he added a disc tab to mine before paint. So not all that custom. I think the sticker on these is about $1000. Got a custom Oddity squid fork to get the offset and a-c correct and 850mm Oddity riser bars to finish it off. For me it's got the necessary modern features like proper geometry, disc brakes, beefcake tubeless tires, clutch der., high engagement hubs. However it retains a lot of the look and a lot of the experience of a vintage bike. It's like my 86 Ritchey on steroids.

    Did a lot of tinkering and horse-cockery to get it running gears in the range I wanted and with a crank that would clear the chainstay. Shimano didn't fit, didn't try boost spaced however. Eventually tried my turbines from the fatbike and they have been flawless. The rear dearailleur and gears are a whole nother story.

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-1202171421c.jpg

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-1202171420a.jpg

    I have pre-torch hubs and spokes laced to new enduro 305 27.5's. The rear hub is a dh150 shell with a single speed freehub body, and with a small spacer behind the endcap, it's a 135 spaced hub. I can fit 6 cogs on it. It has a 13-38 spread and it's less than ideal in one spot. I run the shifter in friction mode so it's a minor nuissance.
    This bike started out as a weird side project and turned into a bike that delivers non stop shit eating grins on every ride. While it may not be for everyone to commit to such a thing, I do think everyone needs to open themselves up to a different experience on their bike. I enjoy this more than my previous wfo's for what it's worth. Can't seem to get the photos rotated sorry
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-1107171257a.jpg  

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-1107171257.jpg  


  82. #82
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    Yes! That's what I'm talkin bout Shaq! Nice bike!

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by CS2 View Post
    What model did you have?
    Sorry there! It was at the end of the page so I didn't see it. It was a cross check.

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by krka73 View Post
    My main question to these "everything sucks" in the industry people is: Are you saying you want to be buying yesteryears bike new today? If so, why? Riding an old bike is a legitimate desire, but you can still buy that old 26" rigid steel bike used, cheaper than ever. You can find them curbside on recycling day all across the country for free. So buy them, rescue them, parts are all over the internet, ride them to your hearts content. Why make the new old stuff now? Or limit innovation to a 5 year cycle?

    I have no issue whatsoever with technological advancement, nor any beef with the fact that the bikes of today are impressive machines.

    That bikes are now treated as precious one off objects, to be purchased with frequent, cyclical gusto, since the next years version will surely provide an experience that is certain to transcend last years?

    That, I take issue with.

    Combine that with about a 2 to 3 year cycle of support parts before they stop making them, since, hey, you should be buying new anyway, by now.

    Further the issue by the ADHD level changing of standards on common service areas such as headsets, bottom brackets, hub spacing, freehub body design, drivetrain speeds, suspension components, and it really sucks for someone who, for whatever reason, rides a lot, but doesn't have the dough to spend $1500 to $5000 every two or three years on a new ride.

    Kudos to you for your optimism, you really should open a shop. The big boys are making the old joke about the fastest way to make a million in the bike industry (start with 2 million) ever easier, with each passing year....
    This is a Pugs not some carbon wannabee pretzel wagon!!

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  85. #85
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    Gorgeous bike, Shaq!
    2016 El Oso Grande
    2018 Stolen Zeke
    90's Skykomish

  86. #86
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    Not completely sure what the thread is about, but I guess for me, yes maybe...
    I like the Ritchey P bikes and the new yo eddy...

    While not completely new, does this count in what we're talking about?

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-15037257_10154784793032915_7287658947292985177_n.jpg
    All the gear and no idea.

  87. #87
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    Man, one of the guys I used to ride with back in the 90's rode a Zaskar. Sweet bike!
    2016 El Oso Grande
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    90's Skykomish

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post
    That bikes are now treated as precious one off objects, to be purchased with frequent, cyclical gusto, since the next years version will surely provide an experience that is certain to transcend last years?
    Thanks for all the interesting posts. The Brodie below pretty much my all-time aesthetic winner and the design I would choose to build a retro-mod MTB around.

    Isn't it strange that cycling feels nearly alone in the quality cannot equal longevity business? In an ecosystem where everything of quality is performance, rather than long service-life oriented it often seems like a bit of chump's game to me.

    Oft-mentioned Rivendell is an interesting case to me as well
    and I wish they had more money (or ambition...). How on earth they don't have a top-shelf, backwards-compatible groupset, designed with input from Charlie Cunningham while he's still able to provide it, that the VRC community could embrace for spares is beyond me. If Rivendell were run by Sky Boyer from Velocult, or Nate/Eric/Carl from MWC they'd probably own the Suntour name and we'd have just that.

    Altus derailleurs on my $3000+ bike? Go f#ck yourself!
    Last edited by mainlyfats; 01-10-2018 at 06:42 AM.

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Thanks for all the interesting posts. The Brodie below pretty much my all-time aesthetic winner and the design I would choose to build a retro-mod MTB around.

    Isn't it strange that cycling feels nearly alone in the quality cannot equal longevity business? In an ecosystem where everything of quality is performance, rather than long service-life oriented it often seems like a bit of chump's game to me.

    Oft-mentioned Rivendell is an interesting case to me as well
    and I wish they had more money (or ambition...). How on earth they don't have a top-shelf, backwards-compatible groupset, designed with input from Charlie Cunningham while he's still able to provide it, that the VRC community could embrace for spares is beyond me. If Rivendell were run by Sky Boyer from Velocult, or Nate/Eric/Carl from MWC they'd probably own the Suntour name and we'd have just that.

    Altus derailleurs on my $3000+ bike? Go f#ck yourself!
    I'm going to read this thread, but I want to respond to the Altus derailleur comment.

    I'm about to install an Altus rear mech on a bike only because I read about it on the Rivendell site, and I figured I will give it a go. It's affordable. I have an old XTR on there , which works just okay, but I want to see if there is am improvement. I'll report back when I have it all done and tested.

    I'm not concerned about weight as much as I am about the way a machine feels when operated.

    Can't wait to read this thread.

    Sent from my LG-H910 using Tapatalk

  90. #90
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    New one from Beardman Cycles.

    Would you buy a new vintage-style MTB?-blackbiketree.jpg

  91. #91
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    I just bought an old Skykomish to use for commuting. Taiwanese make, but full Tange frame and fork, nice street geometry, full Deore LX (except for the brake/shifter pods, which have to go soon).
    2016 El Oso Grande
    2018 Stolen Zeke
    90's Skykomish

  92. #92
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    if i could afford it yes, it would be a titanium schwinn cruiser (merlin newsboy) with canti mount's for 26" 650b and 700c's (but not a 29'er those are lame)

  93. #93
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    In a way, I did buy a new old bike; a couple of them. I still have to finish putting them together. Both 853 steel single speeds. One's 26, and the other is 29. The 26 is going with rim brakes, but the 29er is going to have disc brakes. Do disc brakes belong on bikes in this category? They're getting a mix of old and new parts. I intend to really ride these hard, so all that matters is that the parts work properly for the purpose. Vintage and looks are accidental.

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  94. #94
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    I would like to get a smoking deal on an old elevated CS (Nishiki Alien) bike or reproduction. I'd also love to find a Transition Klunker. No real reason, but once in a while I'd like to throw on some jeans, leather work gloves, Converse, and be vintage.

    I used to ride my rigid Raleigh that way so I'd appreciate my technologically advanced bike... And a nod to Repack.

  95. #95
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    Velo Orange getting in on it.Name:  klunk piolet.jpg
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  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Velo Orange getting in on it.Name:  klunk piolet.jpg
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    Wow. Tell me more.
    Ripping trails and tipping ales

  97. #97
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    That Velorange seat stay reminds me of the NOS Airborne frame I am gradually building.

    Sent from my LG-H910 using Tapatalk

  98. #98
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    ...a more production-friendly variant of the DeKerf or SyCip seatstay.

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  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Oft-mentioned Rivendell is an interesting case to me as well and I wish they had more money (or ambition...). How on earth they don't have a top-shelf, backwards-compatible groupset, designed with input from Charlie Cunningham while he's still able to provide it, that the VRC community could embrace for spares is beyond me. If Rivendell were run by Sky Boyer from Velocult, or Nate/Eric/Carl from MWC they'd probably own the Suntour name and we'd have just that.

    Altus derailleurs on my $3000+ bike? Go f#ck yourself!
    Grant's blog post from yesterday suggesting a letter writing campaign to bring back 1st gen XTR. Surprised he didn't mention the cantilevers... Man o man those were sweet.

    https://www.rivbike.com/blogs/peekin...le/monday-19th

  100. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by mainlyfats View Post
    Grant's blog post from yesterday suggesting a letter writing campaign to bring back 1st gen XTR. Surprised he didn't mention the cantilevers... Man o man those were sweet.

    https://www.rivbike.com/blogs/peekin...le/monday-19th
    indeed... those cantis are sweet.
    WTB: Bomber Z2 1 1/8 steerer, in good to excellent shape OR bomber rebuild kit.

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