Post by eatsrocksnmud on Sept 5, 2007 11:53:44 GMT 8
To oldtimer bikers out there (era ni ricky montelibano he,he). Don't you miss the ride of steel? I still read quotes in magazines that "steal is the real deal". I've also been reading that steel tubing technology is on the rise (with Reynolds 853, Columbus, True Temper). Does anyone still ride steel steads? I have a 1993 Muddy Fox hardtail fitted with a '03 Z1SL and it still serves me well for "all-mountain" / abusive cross-country riding. I've heard a steel Jamis hardtail frame costs around 27T. I don't think my wallet can follow my heart on this one. Mountain Cycles and Kona have their steel versions too. I've also read of steel dirt jumpers but i'm not into that. Would like to solicit bikers' two cents on the matter
eatsrocksnmud, there are a lot of ss frames made out of steel. the jamis exile 29er costs around 35K (i think), but its a whole bike already. both my bikes are hardtail, but one is steel - my ss. both are fun to ride though.
i'd take a good steel frame over aluminum any day. one cheaper option is to have a custom one made by ave maldea. i've been thinking of having one done for some time now. if you've met master jun of the montalbikers, his bike is made by ave maldea.
we've got a selection of Voodoo frames available, check them out in All Terra I especially like the Wanga, convertible from gears to SS. Custom is a very viable option as well (especially if it's Ave's handiwork).
Steel is definitely worth it, and making a niche comeback thanks to SSers who run rigid, and prefer the slightly more comfortable ride of a steel hardtail (as opposed to an alloy one).
That said, frame material is just one part of the 'bike experience' equation. Frame design is just as important - proper geometry for intended use, fit, etc.
Been a steel lover since '93, had a generic steel frame with horizontal dropouts as my 1st, then changed to muddyfox. When generic aluminum frames flooded the market, I went with the trend due to the weight savings.
Missing the ride of steel, I then decided to have one custom built using tange prestige frame tubes - sweet.
Then more cheap & light aluminum frames were coming in, again I was bitten by the WW bug so changed my steel to aluminum for a lighter rig.
Oh dear I still missed the feel of steel, unfortunately during those years, steel frames were a very hard find due to high cost compared with aluminum, & all or most of the lbs here in my place were now selling aluminum frames.
Searched everywhere until I found my American eagle, loved it until it cracked. whew sayang!
Again I searched & searched including the net, at last I found a used 05 Jamis exile & built it up early this year - heavy at 26 lbs on my wife's analog scale but love it.
last Sunday, I tested my sons bike on our favorite route, a Mosso exquisite frame built with my old parts plus my wheelset - God forgive me, I can't express the pain on my upper body & lower back & how hard it was to pedal uphill, seemed to loose all my strength.
(oldschool) STEEL IS REAL - HEAVY YET FORGIVING (oldtimer ;D)
i have steel, ti, al, and carbon frames. steel, by far, has the best ride (yes, it's noticeably better than ti in absorbing bumps). however, i think a lot of that is due to frame construction and not the frame materials used.
Post by eatsrocksnmud on Sept 5, 2007 22:00:56 GMT 8
Did i just start a thread for ancient riders? ha,ha,ha
sup: thanks for the url on prep & maintenance. i better take a peep on the insides of my tubes, must be rusty now.
@king: thanks for info on ave maldea. can he make copies of branded steel frames? does he have quality tubes? am i worthy of his services? i'm in baguio so my only contact with manila riders is when they come up and when the post on this forum
32by18: thanks for more info on this seemingly larger-than-life demigod named ave maldea and for advertising your preferred bikeshop. we have 4 bikeshops here in baguio, but we're friends with all 4. however, jojit balajadia of GoFast is the one who makes trips to manila, so i'll just ask him to do more inquiries when he makes trips down there
err: nice story. how'd you shave your wife's bike to 26lbs? drill it with holes? i noticed that this weight-shaving thing can be quite expensive. it can run to thousands of pesos per gram shaved off. i've been to a few bike websites and the new generation steel frames can be quite light
flipnidaho: you have a point there. it's probably more of the frame design/geometry for intended use than material. didn't it all start with 4130 chromoly? that's basically your car's exhaust pipe. those first chromoly bikes were able to take the abuse back when we didn't have suspension forks (hint,hint--ancient times). now they have reynolds 853. i'd like to have that material on a frame set-up similar to my '93 muddyfox (seems to be the best steel hardtail for me)
to everyone: the two cents you gave was not small change at all. thank you
My first mtb was a steel KHS (1994?). It's been so long that I've forgotten what she rode like. 95% of my rides have been on a generic Ti hardtail SS and my geared aluminum hardtail rarely gets riding time (such a harsh ride). You've got me thinking that I should replace the Al frame with steel. I'll have to keep an eye out for a nice steel steed.
Well we all rode steel at one point of our lives for sure unless you re totally new to biking and was born 10 yrs ago (you are too young to read and understand this)
I owned a Giant chromo-steel bike which was the most solid-feeling bike Ive ever owned. It s now with our katiwala but I miss its ride even just around the streets of our village Owned a DBR chromo-steel bike from Duty free that was crappy in quality and ride. I have a Bianchi Cafe racer with the old 7-speed Nexus pa ...I have not really ridden her for sometime
Steel is Real albeit real Heavy
Last Edit: Sept 6, 2007 12:04:01 GMT 8 by Alphabolt
"those who stray ... will come back in time and If I were to stray, I pray I stray to where I still need two wheels to get by"
"everyone has the darkside, us few just chose to take it for a ride"
"7 thousand islands = 7 thousand trails, eh ?"
LUCKY SPERM Fun Racing Team "you podium, we kick you out. It s a lifestyle not a statement"
The frame of my first "decent" mountain bike (circa 1995) was a Barracuda 'Cuda Comp made with Tange Prestige Double Butted Cr-Mo tubing. This is the same material used by Tom Ritchey in his top-of-the-line XC bikes back then. Very sweet ride, lightweight, forgiving ('cuz of the natural flex of the rear triangle) and very agile.
I had the 12" frame paired with a Rock Shox Judy DH fork with 3" of travel, guess you can already consider it an old school All Mountain HT.
That bike is a veteran of Boso-Boso, Teresa, Pinugay, Puray, Wawa, Anawim and some other trails whose names I can no longer recall. Oh, how can I forget our playground in The Fort when they were still digging the foundation of all those skyscrapers standing there now.
err, as far as my readings are concerned, i think steel frames are repairable. you got me thinking, maybe steel would be my next frame for my geared bike.
sup: yes sir, steel is repairable. since the crack of my american eagle steel frame was long, from below the seatclamp down to the seatstays, our local frame builder advised me to had it retired due to old age but I dis-agreed, so he modified the frame. lowered down the top tube & seat stays & cut the affected part. it is still being used by my 9 yr old son.
eatsrocksnmud: my current ride is a geared 05 jamis exile, I weighed it on my wife's analog scale & it registered at 26 lbs, with an accuracy of +/- I dont know ;D.
wcoastbo: KHS alite steel frames was a dreaam bike in the 90's - but very expensive & not sold as a frame same as DB, Marin & baracuda.
Before i found my exile, I was dreaming of owning a jamis dragon or the zion 66 - just cant afford it. too expensive even on ebay.
In my experience, now that I'm 40, I really appreciate the more forgiving ride of steel. ;D ;D ;D
Ave Maldea's competitive advantage is that he uses a real bicycle frame assembly jig. All angles and alignments are precise. The tubes are clamped securely so that they don't twist relative to each other due to heat deformation.
The only area where I think he should improve on is the mitering of the tubes. He doesn't have a tube cutting machine to cut out the complex curves on tube ends.
When precisely mitered, butted tubes use less melted brass to fill the gaps between them. Use less brass and you get a much lighter frame. Much lighter than the frames churned out by that other bike frame maker in 20th Ave., Cubao. The mitering there is simply horrible! They use gobs of melted brass just to bridge and fill huge gaps between tubes.
I've asked Ave before if he had ever considered Tig/Mig welding. He said yes but admitted he doesn't have the money for it. Sayang!
I use a size 19" all chromo hardtail (an old KGB cycles frame) that is Tig-welded. It's way lighter than a size 19" brass brazed steel frame.
"I LOVE THE SMELL OF NAPALM IN THE MORNING!" -Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore, Apolcalypse Now
Post by eatsrocksnmud on Sept 7, 2007 17:00:49 GMT 8
glockbiker, does the brass hold the tubes together like a weld? will it take the torque or lateral forces when the frame is ridden? or does the weld hold it together and the brass is just a gap filler? the dropouts on my muddyfox are brazed with brass, but they take on vertical impact more than lateral or torque force.
this is getting quite informative for me. i might just go down to manila and check out ave maldea myself. i've seen a website on attending a frame building training where you build your own frame for US$2,000. if ave is as good as you guys portray him to be, then interested bikers should pay to hang out at his shop: appreciation fee for his special skills. if we can convince more bikers to get a steel stead from ave, maybe he'll be able to afford tig/mig welding..... reynolds853 tubing.... hydroforming (if it works for steel).... still dreaming...
In Ave's case, the melted brass (actually its copper) holds the tubes being joined as well as fills gaps in areas where the mitering is not precise.
In brazing, the copper to act as a "glue". You do not melt the tubes that you are joining. In TIG/MIG welding you melt part of the tubes you are joining plus a filler metal of a similar alloy.
In the old days, tubes were inserted into LUGS and were held in place with melted copper that filled up the gaps between tube and lugs.
This produced a very strong mechanical joint. So strong that the only way to pull out a tube from a lug without detroying it is to reheat the joint with a torch and melt the copper out.
Ave does not use lugs anymore so his tubes are only held together by the melted copper. I doubt if this method of construction is good or durable enough for MTB applications.
Anyway, do go to his shop and see for yourself. As they say in Latin, "Caveat emptor!" (Let the buyer beware!)
just some clarifications: in brazing lugged frames, silver rod (actually mostly brass with about 40% silver content) is used instead of copper or brass since silver has a lower melting point (high heat will damage and warp tubes- don't ask why I know this...hehe ) and flows into the gaps between the lugs and tubes a lot easier using capillary action. In fillet brazing, we use brass and use higher heat. Contrary to popular belief, you can still build light frames using lugged or fillet brazing. My fillet brazed frame before paint was around 4lbs 1 oz (I used a lot of brass on the downtube/headtube junction).
Last Edit: Sept 10, 2007 19:25:08 GMT 8 by flipnidaho
Post by glockbiker on Sept 11, 2007 17:03:02 GMT 8
Yup, that's the recommended filler metal for brazing. But I'm talking about the local frame manufacturers here. I doubt if they actually use brass/silver alloy fillers. Too expensive to just use for hiding sloppy mitering. They pile it on and just grind the excess to smoothen the joints.
"I LOVE THE SMELL OF NAPALM IN THE MORNING!" -Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore, Apolcalypse Now
Post by eatsrocksnmud on Sept 13, 2007 21:12:18 GMT 8
nice frame! beautiful piece of work. how much did that cost? that's a 4130 chro-moly right? a high-tensile is probably heavier. most bike websites have geometry information about their frames. i guess he can make a copy/replica of those branded frames aside from those he makes.
maybe the Mod can rename this thread as "Ave Maldea frame works"
glockbiker & flipnidaho, i'm impressed with your omniscience on the subject matter. very interesting stuff you guys discussed. you two must be metallurgists of some sort. my best friend in grade school was a geek. we both dreamed to be scientists when we grew up. he went to P-Sci, then ateneo, then got his masters and phd in chemistry in the states. i ended up studying lowly courses like accounting and law. if only i knew i'd be hooked on mountainbiking, i would have taken courses in mechanics, metallurgy, aerodynamics, sports medicine..... and the wishlist goes on. i'm on the second half of my biblical lifespan so it's time to learn everything i've taken for granted during the my expended half-life. sorry for the mellowdrama of my misspent youth
Post by flipnidaho on Sept 13, 2007 21:19:33 GMT 8
i'm not a metallurgist. i was just lucky enough to go to a framebuilding class to design and build my own frame and they taught us quite a bit about frame design, metals, brazing, welding, etc... before they even let us touch a torch...