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  1. #1
    Max
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    experience with XACD frames/parts?

    after doing some research on the XACD ti products, i've read of people saying their frames and forks cracked, others stating they are just fine or even great, that the forks have been redesigned for better strength etc.

    my main concern is weight and geometry, and longtime experience regarding durability. does anyone here own a XACD Ti MTB frame? does anyone know the top tube lengths for several sizes? and are the rigid forks suspension-geo corrected?

    i wanna build up some decent light Ti rigid bike but dont wanna spend the big ca$h on litespeed and merlin.


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  2. #2
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    I only trust Morati...

    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    after doing some research on the XACD ti products, i've read of people saying their frames and forks cracked, others stating they are just fine or even great, that the forks have been redesigned for better strength etc.

    my main concern is weight and geometry, and longtime experience regarding durability. does anyone here own a XACD Ti MTB frame? does anyone know the top tube lengths for several sizes? and are the rigid forks suspension-geo corrected?

    i wanna build up some decent light Ti rigid bike but dont wanna spend the big ca$h on litespeed and merlin.

    None of their forks, frames, stems, handlebars have ever been broken (cranks were a big mistake...), Miguel Martinez, Thomas Frischneckt use them, it's not too expensive ex-factory. I have a slightly used V-brake only fork for sale. I live only a few hundred kms from you...

    I ride a Morati road frame, fork, have M-Bar, Classic, MTB fork. My friend rides a 1.3, another a 1.4, another a softtail... Good stuff, ex-soviet hi-tech, made in a gas cooker factory(!) along side of Boeing jet engine parts in Moravia... This is Eastern Europe!

    (I hope the image loads up!)

    -b
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  3. #3
    Max
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    well, morati is a great company for sure, but i really wanna keep costs down. and XACD seem to be a big company producing for a lot of other manufacturers. and XACD can build custom mfor no extra charge


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  4. #4
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    The Morati fork is an ideal for a frame designed for 80 mm forks. A little too long for old frames designed for 63 mm, and makes almost roadbike-like head tube angle in some 2004 frames (eg. Kona Kula). Rides well, if you're a tough guy, you can use it all day... I'm sure you can't get the Chinese fork for 250 euros, and this one will surely last longer even if it has been used for a year. The only problem with titanium is that even if you weld all parts the same, some will be defective due to contamination, so you need to x-ray every weld. The Chinese don't have this technology, hence Boeing doesn't order parts from XACD...

    -b

  5. #5
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    greybicycle.com

    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    well, morati is a great company for sure, but i really wanna keep costs down. and XACD seem to be a big company producing for a lot of other manufacturers. and XACD can build custom mfor no extra charge
    hey Max,
    send Didier from greybicycle.com a mail. he has some VERY nice Ti bikes and parts. he's in Switzerland and i saw/rode those bikes...one word: awesome!
    tell him Nino sent you, that also should help

  6. #6
    Doesntplaywellwithmorons!
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    nothing like someone asking about XACD...

    and the moron club responds about someone else instead.

    Spicer Cycles has their Ti forks (which folks love) made by XACD and Aerolite in canada has their stuff (frames, forks, stems, posts) made by XACD also.

    Also if you search the archives of the old forum format, you'll find lots of threads regarding XACD and an mtbr member who used to flog their products heavily and had crappy customer service named Timinwisconsin.
    I don't post to generate business for myself or make like I'm better than sliced bread

  7. #7
    Max
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    thanks everyone for the input. i know there a lot of Ti companies out there, but i guess when it comes down to price and cost, nothing even comes close to XACD: around 300 for a hardtail frame!
    i dont wanna build it up as my No.1 WW-racer, rather as a cool everyday bike that wont be affected by salt and corrosion, maybe use it for some easy XC races, paired with the extra BLING-BLING factor

    the guy from XACD told me they used to make airborne frames, and they look sweeeet indeed (that rhymes, hah!)

    i know didier from the board, but like morati and other companies - while their products surely are pieces of skilled and uniue craftsmenship - he probably won't meet my tight budget.

    here's the airborne black widow


    loos really nice and should make for some extra comfort, but is claimed 1710 g in my size


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  8. #8
    Max
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    here's another airborne, the regular one which should also be available at XACD, and 1530 g according to airborne


    XACD's versions of these frames look the same BTW


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  9. #9
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    I could be wrong but I was under the impression that the Airbourne frames were using "seamed" tubes for there frames. Instead of seamless (Merlin, Litespeed etc.). XACD... a lesser quality perhaps, but affordable. If you go for it, let us know how it works out.

  10. #10
    nightriding is fun !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    after doing some research on the XACD ti products, i've read of people saying their frames and forks cracked, others stating they are just fine or even great, that the forks have been redesigned for better strength etc.
    But that holds true for about every make and product. Tilon had problems with their forks (I believe Spicer had several broken) but they corrected that. I have not heard of a Tilon frame breaking.
    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    my main concern is weight and geometry, and longtime experience regarding durability. does anyone here own a XACD Ti MTB frame? does anyone know the top tube lengths for several sizes? and are the rigid forks suspension-geo corrected?

    i wanna build up some decent light Ti rigid bike but dont wanna spend the big ca$h on litespeed and merlin.
    I have a XACD (Xi'An Chang Da) Tilon Ti frame, custom made.I told them (through Hilset) what I wanted and they made it.
    You can find the standard frame sizes on Hilset. That's where I ordered mine.
    And by the way, they are not exactly cheap, at least not the custom ones

    Some pics of my Tilon frame can be found here
    Last edited by Big Bad Wolf; 01-19-2005 at 01:01 PM.
    Titanium or Bust !

  11. #11
    nightriding is fun !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    thanks everyone for the input. i know there a lot of Ti companies out there, but i guess when it comes down to price and cost, nothing even comes close to XACD: around ? 300 for a hardtail frame!
    i dont wanna build it up as my No.1 WW-racer, rather as a cool everyday bike that wont be affected by salt and corrosion, maybe use it for some easy XC races, paired with the extra BLING-BLING factor

    the guy from XACD told me they used to make airborne frames, and they look sweeeet indeed (that rhymes, hah!)

    i know didier from the board, but like morati and other companies - while their products surely are pieces of skilled and uniue craftsmenship - he probably won't meet my tight budget.

    here's the airborne black widow


    loos really nice and should make for some extra comfort, but is claimed 1710 g in my size
    As long as I can remember Airbornes are made HERE
    Compare the frame below with an Airborne one..I rest my case
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    Last edited by Big Bad Wolf; 01-19-2005 at 12:59 PM.
    Titanium or Bust !

  12. #12
    nightriding is fun !
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max
    here's another airborne, the regular one which should also be available at XACD, and 1530 g according to airborne


    XACD's versions of these frames look the same BTW
    You are wrong Max, Tilon has nothing whatsoever to do with Airborne or their frames.
    Titanium or Bust !

  13. #13
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    thanks for the moron...

    Quote Originally Posted by DeeEight
    and the moron club responds about someone else instead.

    Spicer Cycles has their Ti forks (which folks love) made by XACD and Aerolite in canada has their stuff (frames, forks, stems, posts) made by XACD also.

    Also if you search the archives of the old forum format, you'll find lots of threads regarding XACD and an mtbr member who used to flog their products heavily and had crappy customer service named Timinwisconsin.
    do you have a problem ?
    he asks about a cheapo Ti-manufacturer and i tell him another source which is just a couple of hours away from his home, that's all. and i'm sure he gets a better bike from Didier than from over there...if they are indeed more expensive has to be seen. i'd say let Max decide if that's a good idea or not, ok?
    have a nice day!

  14. #14
    Max
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    these hi-light frames look even nicer! has anyone ever tried to polish a ti frame? is that sth you can do on your own? or is it rather exhausting and time-consuming?


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  15. #15
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    The moron club takes the argument further... If an American rider writes that its great to own an American product, why shouldn't I, Nino or possibly Max be proud to own one made a few hudred kms from his home instead of 10.000? If one can say that a Yeti is a Yeti, I can also say that these parts are really much better than the far eastern mass produced alternative...

    I visit a lot of bicycle trade shows, and always noted that year after year Airborne has once again stole one of its competitors idea. XACD, and the other manufacturer that produces Airborne stuff just makes whatever they get in AutoCAD. There is no R&D dept. there. Their products are nice, but its nothing to be bragging about...

    Polishing titanium: yes I tried it with a stem and results were ok. The only problem is that it's a nightmere to keep it looking nice. Sandblasted titanium is much better in this respect. I wash my road bike once a year...

    -moron#1

  16. #16
    Max
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    ok, i think i've made my decision: XACD frame "VooDoo" (allegedly they also made the voodoo frames ) with the following geometry

    18.5"
    393(c-c)
    469 (c-t)
    71° steerer angle
    73° seat angle
    559 measured TT
    584 effective TT
    425 seastays
    1058 wheelbase
    32 BB drop
    120 steerer tube length
    38 fork rake
    81 brake boss distance
    364 Dropout to bottom of Bridge Tube
    250 Dropout to Brake Boss

    all measurements in mm

    this is very similiar to my present XC race HT (585 mm TT, 1060 wheelbase, 71°/73,5°, 420 mm stays)

    looking forward to ordering it, though it might still take some time and money saving


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  17. #17
    Max
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    Quote Originally Posted by macsi
    Polishing titanium: yes I tried it with a stem and results were ok. The only problem is that it's a nightmere to keep it looking nice. Sandblasted titanium is much better in this respect. I wash my road bike once a year...
    what were the problems? i thought THE big advantage of Ti is that it doesnt corrode, i.e. wouldnt become dull (like aluminium)


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  18. #18
    Max
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    BTW: do you think wishbone seatstays are lighter than conventional ones? maybe not as there arent that many companies using them on their bikes. a friend of mine has a 10 year old rocky (maybe older!) and is still racing it from time to time. his frame has beautiful wishbone stays.....


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  19. #19
    nightriding is fun !
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    Quote Originally Posted by macsi
    The moron club takes the argument further... If an American rider writes that its great to own an American product, why shouldn't I, Nino or possibly Max be proud to own one made a few hudred kms from his home instead of 10.000? If one can say that a Yeti is a Yeti, I can also say that these parts are really much better than the far eastern mass produced alternative...

    I visit a lot of bicycle trade shows, and always noted that year after year Airborne has once again stole one of its competitors idea. XACD, and the other manufacturer that produces Airborne stuff just makes whatever they get in AutoCAD. There is no R&D dept. there. Their products are nice, but its nothing to be bragging about...

    Polishing titanium: yes I tried it with a stem and results were ok. The only problem is that it's a nightmere to keep it looking nice. Sandblasted titanium is much better in this respect. I wash my road bike once a year...

    -moron#1
    The Chinese and Taiwanese are great in assimilating and adapting other peoples ideas, and who can blame them.

    Bottom line is, Ok , the welds and overall finish are not as good as those on my Moots or Litespeed, and there is no internal butting and it seems a bit archaic , but what the heck, the frame looks nice , will probably ride just as good as the others mentioned, especially if you order custom where you can specify what type, tube size and Ti alloy to use. I also have a personal logo on the head tube and chose another type of dropout and s-bended downtubes..

    And this at a fraction of the price (although the custom Tilon I have is priced around 1200 Euros - 1600 USD ) of an US-made custom Ti frame . The Tilon is even lighter than my Litespeed
    As a second or third bike, I feel you cannot go wrong choosing for Tilon.


    ps : Max , normally the Tilon frames are sandblasted, but at a small price they can polish them for you... some manufacturers re-finish your frame at your expense if it gets badly scatched (Moots does this) although Ti wears very hard.. but it does happen
    Last edited by Big Bad Wolf; 01-20-2005 at 12:08 AM.
    Titanium or Bust !

  20. #20
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    Titanium doesn't corrode or oxidize, but even a small amount of grease dulls the polished finish. I wouldn't choose anything but sandblasting for the finish. As Big Bad Wolf said: titanium has very high surface hardness, which means that I don't use a chainstay protector for my road bike and all the chain did during 3 years of intensive use was to polish the surface somewhat. The 6Al/4V alloy used for the dropouts is so hard, that even tool hardened steel cannot make a mark in it - maybe only with a hammer, which I haven't tried...

    I use to have a Russian made titanium MTB frame (Cascade) 4 years ago, which broke after a half a season. I cut the tubes to make seatposts, hubs, stems from them. I distroyed a lot of quality sawblades doing this and the laithe mechanic at the workshop also complained that his tools saw some damage during the fine cutting/machining process...

    -b (or moron)

  21. #21
    Max
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    ok, so i got another email with several frame options:

    - wishbone seatstays +$35 originally i wanted those, but i'm not sure if it's worth the money. are wishbone seatstays lighter or do they offer any other advantage?
    - double butted tubes +$80 i think i might go for these to save some extra weight. maybe that will also increase frame life and strength
    -brushed finish +$45 ok, that's purely optical, but what would you recommend? brushed finish or dull finish?


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  22. #22
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    Dull, sandblasted for the reasons I gave above.

    Concerning the two other options: Morati introduced wishbone stays on the new 1.4 and they paired it with a specially shaped top tube to provide even more vertical flex. The guy who uses it had a 1.3 before and feels a lot of difference in lateral stiffness and vertical complience. The only problem is that it's more expensive and traps mud...

    Double butted tubes make sense, but in the case of Chinese frames it means the tubes are not seamless but welded from a sheet of titanium. This creates a lot of problems. Any bending on titanium must be done in a pressure chamber at a certain temperature. It is not possible to do this with the technology the Chinese have. They simply cold work the tubes. Then they cannot check the quality of the welds with chromatic inspection, though they have 5 meters of weld on the frame... I don't know if it is a good idea to ask for an elaborate manufacturing process from a company which is clearly not capable of providing it. Even Morati cannot make a double butted frame, since they cannot guarantee that the frame would be perfect and never break. Working with titanium is not so easy...I would stick with straight gauge tubing for safety, or if you really want low weight and a modest price, just forget buying a ti frame... There are a lot of good light frames on the market made from other materials :-)

    -b

  23. #23
    Max
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    according to XACD, (at least) their double butted tubes are seamless

    here are some pics from XACD frames, the first one is from another MTBR member (Lanpope, thx!). i think i might go for a sandblasted finish, but double butted tubes, which should save 150 g

    i will also choose conventional seatstays as these are slightly lighter than monostay solutions. i'll spring for disc tabs as well, but without the disc cable routing, which should make for clean looks while keeping the possibility to upgrade to disc once i get bored by Vees
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  24. #24
    Max
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    here'S a brushed XACD frame with the optional break-away option
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  25. #25
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    Two pics takes in Austria...
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