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Thread: IF Ti or Steel?

  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004

    IF Ti or Steel?

    Gonna get an IF. Can't decide whether ti or steel.

    Would love your thoughts.


  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    IF its your first custom build- and you are unsure of your geometry needs, i would err on the steel side. If you have made an error on geometry or find out too late that you really would have liked a longer tt/shorter yada yada.....you will be able to sell it fast- and have another built and still have cash in your pocket over a ti frame.

    IF you are planning on anything other than super high end components--you should go steel and spend the difference on upgrading your componentry. I would take a pimped out steel frame over any ti frame with an xt-esque build any day of the week.

    IFyou prefer a stiffer/race build- i would also go steel. The real differences in steel vs ti comes in the lighter, plusher builds where steel feels slightly mushy and ti retains its snappy feel. The stiffer,race build steels feel nice and snappy and i would say can be as nice if not nicer if you can dial in your tubing mixes. Steel in the super lightweight builds will die a quicker death and ti will endure much longer.

    IF you weigh over 180lbs i would go steel.

    IF you have less than 3k in your budget i would go steel.

    IF you ride in salt water or the Pacific Northwest i would go Ti. If you dont ride in salt water or Oregon- i would go steel.

    IF you like the color silver i would go ti. If you like any color other than silver- i would go steel. Yes you can put color on ti, but thats like getting a high class hooker and heading out to the movies....its sorta gay imo.

    IF you answered ti to any of the above....then i would go IF.

    IF you have six weeks and a hole burning in your wallet- i would go IF.

    IF you have six months and patience of a saint- i would go Vanilla.

    IF you are a nut about details,specifics and particulars- i would go Stickel.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    ti vs. steel

    Howdy, rode ti and steel Fat Cities for several years. Overall, I dug the light weight and durability of the ti. Ti ride really is smoother, though the <1 lb. weight savings alone can't justify the cost.

    However, the acceleration felt different to me. When you really stand on the pedals, the steel bike had a more responsive feel that's very cool and pretty hard to describe. Imagine coming out of a fast banked turn, and you stand on the gas, and one bike (ti) does exactly what it's told, while the other (steel) pops you out of the turn and actually wants to go faster. Kinda weird, but that's the difference in feel that I perceived on the two.

    Hard to go wrong either way. IFs are drool-worthy rides.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Strong Ti's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    I agree with you regarding the feel

    Steel has more of snap to the ride that Ti doesn't. As you accelerate out of a corner a good qualitity steel frame seems to wind up more and to propel you out where a Ti frame will smoothly power you through. It's a very subtile difference but noticable.

    I also find that Ti is also a lot easier on the body especially for rides longer than 3 hours, it'll also be fractionally lighter and all the other advantages of Ti.

    If you know exactly what you want in the frame and can afford the extra expense and will keep the frame for a long while, I'd go Ti.

    Either way with an IF, you're not going to lose!

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    How much do ya wanna spend? If you have the money, go titanium. It will last forever. If you want a great custom bike, but can't spend 5g's on it, go steel. IF won't build a bike for you if you are unsure of your measurements. Rather, they won't build it until you are sure of what you want and need. You can use a sizing system such as the Wrenchscience.com
    Sizing System. Wrenchscience are IF experts. They can get you on the right bike.

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