Steel Bikes Anyone?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Steel Bikes Anyone?

    There are not many options out there for steel bikes anymore. At this point steel technology has increased to the point that a steel bike can be as light as a Aluminum or Carbon Fiber model and carry the benefits of Steel. I am currently writing a business plan for a bike company that will develop high performance steel suspension mountain bikes. In my current phase of my plan I am collecting market research about what people think. It would be very helpful for me if you would answer a few questions about your opinions on bikes and your purchasing behavior. The survey is only 12 questions long and will take less than a minute of your time. Thanks!
    Mountain Bike Survey

  2. #2
    dru
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    I've built two frames. I don't think you can get a steel frame anywhere near as light as aluminum, carbon or Ti. There is a weight penalty of 1 lb or more depending on the size of the frame. A guy I know has built 40 frames and his lightest steel frame is just over 3 lbs. It is a 58 cm road frame made out of true temper S3. His lightest carbon frame is under 2 lbs. BTW, he's a mechanical engineer by trade. I doubt very much you'd ever see a steel hardtail frame much under 4 lbs in a smaller size.

    Drew

    Drew
    occasional cyclist

  3. #3
    Former Bike Wrench
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    I love steel hardtails and road bikes...but your on crack if you think you can build them as light as Carbon Fiber

  4. #4
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    Its 2011, and carbon is in.

    Best, John

  5. #5
    T.W.O.
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    I did the survey but I'd agree with everyone here so far, there's no way that you can build a steel frame from available tube set lighter than alu, carbon or ti it's just not possible. Your survey is quite vague as well, I wish things are black and white the way you put it. Then again if you offer "It depends" then it would be the most chosen

    I rode the indyfab stainless steel road bike a while back it's the coolest thing but I don't know if I'd like that over the ti or carbon though.

    If you are doing a nitche marketing then it's awesome but competing with the mainstream current offering I don't know if it would be profitable. Good luck.

  6. #6
    CS2
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Kuhl View Post
    Its 2011, and carbon is in.

    Best, John
    Tell that to Waterford. Their R33 weighs about 2.9 lbs for a size 56CM. That's AL territory.
    A garage full of steel frames means happiness.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by CS2 View Post
    Tell that to Waterford. Their R33 weighs about 2.9 lbs for a size 56CM. That's AL territory.
    That's light for a steel frame, 18lb R33 looks nice as well. That said apple to apple Ibis Silk SL is 2.2 lb frame size 58cm, I'm with John carbon is in

  8. #8
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    I took your survey, even though it seems like you're pointing a little bit away from where I go as a rider.

    My experience with steel is much like everyone else's: 25 years ago. Today you have a couple of "retro" offerings for a slim niche market. But I would love to have a Trek Sawyer set up as a multi-purpose bike with 38mm tires and an internal gear hub.

    If I bring another bike home...

    My point is that I don't believe you can sell any serious number of steel full-suspension bikes. Too many technical problems to keep on top of.

  9. #9
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    would be interesting to compare pricing on that waterford against a like weight aluminum

    Quote Originally Posted by CS2 View Post
    Tell that to Waterford. Their R33 weighs about 2.9 lbs for a size 56CM. That's AL territory.

  10. #10
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    I really like steel hardtails and I bought a 14 year old complete bike for $200. Its a great ride, and I went for an old bike because the new steel bikes are too expensive and I cant see that they would be all that much better unless you need 3 inches of travel. If I had enough money for a new, high end AM HT bike, I would go for Ti.

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