Infos on Matt Chester frame?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Infos on Matt Chester frame?

    Hi there,
    after reading a lot about the late Matt Chester here and elsewhere I sincerely dont want to open the can of pandora again.

    Nonetheless, I just recently bought a Matt Chester frame with 26inch wheels what seems to be from the early days of him building frames.

    I've not much info on the frame itself (i.e. frame #) yet but maybe someone can tell me roughly what I have:



    Later he builded just 29" dirt drop bikes but it seems that BITD he had a somewhat different approach. I've read the review in Dirt Rag from 2000 but couldnt find much more info...

    Cheers,
    Marco
    Last edited by caemis; 09-27-2017 at 06:28 AM.

  2. #2
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    Sweet bike. If you don't get info here, try the Vintage, Retro, Classic forum on the site.

  3. #3
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    Marco,

    If you use the wayback internet archive, you can read about his frames and his philosophy. He stopped advertising the Utilitiman (26" wheels) back in mid-2003.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20040408...docs/411.shtml

    I bought a Utilitiman, which took about 10 months between deposit and delivery (May 2004). Like your frame, it wasn't serialized either.

    My Ute came with a single black Utilitiman decal on the seat tube - Matt stated he stopped applying the white decals in 2001 due to adhesion problems. So that would date your frame around 1998-2000.

    Kevin

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by paqrat View Post
    Marco,

    If you use the wayback internet archive, you can read about his frames and his philosophy. He stopped advertising the Utilitiman (26" wheels) back in mid-2003.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20040408...docs/411.shtml

    I bought a Utilitiman, which took about 10 months between deposit and delivery (May 2004). Like your frame, it wasn't serialized either.

    My Ute came with a single black Utilitiman decal on the seat tube - Matt stated he stopped applying the white decals in 2001 due to adhesion problems. So that would date your frame around 1998-2000.

    Kevin
    Thanks! That was really helpful and I already found some good stuff to read! Did you still own your Ute?

    Cheers

  5. #5
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    I'd probably remove the decal, someone might destroy the bike out of spite...
    WTB: Med Bontrager Ti Lite, PM Me...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jestep View Post
    I'd probably remove the decal, someone might destroy the bike out of spite...
    I guess nobody will notice the frame or the problematic history here in Germany...

  7. #7
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    "the late Matt Chester"

    has he died?
    By continuing to browse my posts, you agree to send me cookies.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    "the late Matt Chester"

    has he died?
    Oh great. Now I'll NEVER get my frame.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by chazpat View Post
    "the late Matt Chester"

    has he died?
    I dont know! What I meant just became obvious: people still waiting on their frames. So, showing up with one of them, I just wanted to make clear that I am after information on the Matt Chester in his early period of work and not his later years were he had some serious problems getting his work done.

    Quote Originally Posted by JACKL View Post
    Oh great. Now I'll NEVER get my frame.
    How long are you waiting?

    (Now. I've opened Pandora's box myself )
    Last edited by caemis; 05-19-2018 at 11:11 AM.

  10. #10
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    Still ride mine. Sweet bike. MutinyMan #2. His 2nd 29"er.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Infos on Matt Chester frame?-img_0163.jpg  

    Zip ties? Not on my bike!

    Want:
    650B rims or wheel set. 80's vintage 32 or 36 x 135mm

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff View Post
    Still ride mine. Sweet bike. MutinyMan #2. His 2nd 29"er.
    Ah, the one with discs! I saw it before in one of the MC threads here.

    Here is mine - at the moment just the bare frame and as @paqrat pointed out without frame# and some adhesive problems of the decals. I hope I get in touch with the original owner to hear his story




    Cheers

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by caemis View Post
    Thanks! That was really helpful and I already found some good stuff to read! Did you still own your Ute?

    Cheers
    Yep, I still own the frame, but I retired it after finding a small crack in the seat tube & down tube junction (hidden by the seat post collar).

    I assume the crack occurred from un-seizing a firmly stuck Thomson seat post (riding in salt and snow for 7 winters likely didn't help)...

    I also had placed a deposit on a Mutinyman (Nov 2005) but I've long since wrote that off. I currently ride a Moots 29" YBB & couldn't be happier with it.

    Kevin

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by paqrat View Post
    Yep, I still own the frame, but I retired it after finding a small crack in the seat tube & down tube junction (hidden by the seat post collar).

    I assume the crack occurred from un-seizing a firmly stuck Thomson seat post (riding in salt and snow for 7 winters likely didn't help)...

    I also had placed a deposit on a Mutinyman (Nov 2005) but I've long since wrote that off. I currently ride a Moots 29" YBB & couldn't be happier with it.

    Kevin
    Kevin, thanks again. Can you remember (or in that case anyone tell me) what might be a good fork height for the Ute for XC/Touring? I guess something between 41.5/60mm front suspension up to 46.5/100mm front suspension will work?
    Last edited by caemis; 10-09-2017 at 09:50 AM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff View Post
    Still ride mine. Sweet bike. MutinyMan #2. His 2nd 29"er.
    Me, too. Both days this past weekend.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Infos on Matt Chester frame?-chester.jpg  

    Infos on Matt Chester frame?-chester_mutinyman.jpg  

    "May your trails be winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view." - Ed Abbey
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by caemis View Post
    Kevin, thanks again. Can you remember (or in that case anyone tell me) what might be a good fork height for the Ute for XC/Touring? I guess something between 41.5/60mm front suspension up to 46.5/100mm front suspension will work?
    My frame was not designed around a suspension corrected fork. The drawings Matt provided had listed a 395-400mm axle to crown fork to get the target 72 / 72 degree head and seat tube angles.

    What is the axle to crown dimension on the black fork shown in the first picture?


    Kevin

  16. #16
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    I dont know the AC dimension of the Salsa fork, since its not mine (the seller couldnt tell me either). But I did some testing yesterday:

    39.5cm


    40.5


    41.5


    42.5


    I tested the angles on my computer but getting different results, i.e. 72 will be reached with 42.5cm. I need to get some tools to examine this.

    What do you think...

  17. #17
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    Well, my LBS provided a digital protractor and the results backed my previous assumption, that the ideal height should be 42.5cm BUT I forgot to include the stack height of the lower headset cup, which means, that I need a work with ideally 41cm (+/-)...

    Cheers
    Last edited by caemis; 10-10-2017 at 11:11 AM.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by caemis View Post
    Kevin, thanks again. Can you remember (or in that case anyone tell me) what might be a good fork height for the Ute for XC/Touring? I guess something between 41.5/60mm front suspension up to 46.5/100mm front suspension will work?
    Stepping out of long lurker mode, just noticed this thread!

    I still own an original Utilitiman frame, size large, though it hasn't been built up since around 2009. Nothing wrong with it at all, still the best MTB frame I ever had; it is more that I moved to an area (western Norway) that just doesn't have trails suitable for that kind of riding and now I've gone to the real dark side (roadie).

    In fact I only noticed this thread because I thought to try and sell it again. If I can't sell it I would eventually build it up as a 27,5" single speed, or so I keep telling myself.

    Anyway, dug into the archives and from what I have, Matt designed this around the Surly 1x1 fork dimensions, 453mm a-c, 40mm offset. He originally referred me to Rick Hunter for a custom fork with those dimensions. I destroyed that and replaced it with a Surly 1x1 to keep the same geometry. Other specs in the large were 23,5" effective top tube, 17" seat tube c-c , 72 degrees across the board, 13" BB height assuming 2,1" tires.

  19. #19
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    I should maybe add here, as it may be of interest, that my daily rider is also a Matt Chester frame. Geared road touring/cyclocross bike, which is probably a long story.

    So I have one of his first frames, and one of his last. Both awesome.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShivaSteve View Post
    Stepping out of long lurker mode, just noticed this thread!

    I still own an original Utilitiman frame, size large, though it hasn't been built up since around 2009. Nothing wrong with it at all, still the best MTB frame I ever had; it is more that I moved to an area (western Norway) that just doesn't have trails suitable for that kind of riding and now I've gone to the real dark side (roadie).

    In fact I only noticed this thread because I thought to try and sell it again. If I can't sell it I would eventually build it up as a 27,5" single speed, or so I keep telling myself.

    Anyway, dug into the archives and from what I have, Matt designed this around the Surly 1x1 fork dimensions, 453mm a-c, 40mm offset. He originally referred me to Rick Hunter for a custom fork with those dimensions. I destroyed that and replaced it with a Surly 1x1 to keep the same geometry. Other specs in the large were 23,5" effective top tube, 17" seat tube c-c , 72 degrees across the board, 13" BB height assuming 2,1" tires.
    Hi, thanks for stepping in Are you certain with the fork dimension? 453mm a-c sounds more like a 29er fork... I already asked Rick Hunter but he couldn't recall dimensions...

    Anyway based on my meassures I orderd a fork and I just received it today:




    It has 415mm a-c and 45mm offset... I'll get some more pics up tomorrow.

    And if you have any pics, please post some of them!

    Cheers

  21. #21
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  22. #22
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    I took 453 a-c off the current specs of Surly's 1x1 fork, but agree, that doesn't sound right at all! So went back and did find an old email from Matt - 413mm is right.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShivaSteve View Post
    I took 453 a-c off the current specs of Surly's 1x1 fork, but agree, that doesn't sound right at all! So went back and did find an old email from Matt - 413mm is right.
    Great! Thank you for this reply and very cool that you could find the old email...

  24. #24
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    The current state:

  25. #25
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    Well, I just saw that a picture of the "final" build is still missing:



    Cheers,
    Marco

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