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Which Ti Bike Did You Buy and Why? Happy or Not?

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Which Ti Bike Did You Buy and Why? Happy or Not?

Old 01-16-21, 03:53 PM
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Bassmanbob
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Which Ti Bike Did You Buy and Why? Happy or Not?

I'm seriously considering a titanium road bike and I've saved about half of the money for one. For those who've purchased a Ti bike, which one did you buy? Why did you get that one? Did you get the whole bike from the builder or just the frame and have your LBS build the rest? Are you glad you got your bike or not and why? Thanks in advanced.

Edit: I just wanted to add that I am a 55 year-old guy who rides about 100-125 mile/week and enjoys group rides and century events when there is no pandemic.

Last edited by Bassmanbob; 01-16-21 at 04:14 PM.
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Old 01-16-21, 05:16 PM
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Not quite a road bike, but I bought a built-up, 105-level, Lynskey Urbano in 2018 for commuting and gravel. It met my requirements quite nicely after replacing the crap original wheels with two sets of Hed Ardennes, shod with 25 and 36 mm tires, respectively.


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Old 01-16-21, 05:42 PM
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I bought a Lynskey R300 bike December 2019 and received it late January. Since then I put 3057 miles on it. My main bicycle is a Canyon Endurace CF SLX. I have never owned a Ti bike before and Lynskey had a 30% off sale. It rides differently from my Canyon because it rides on 32mm tires versus 28mm and the way Ti handles road surface. I enjoy riding it and usually alternate with my Canyon, 2 rides on the Canyon and 1 ride on the Lynskey. If I were to buy again I would get the internal cable version instead of the external cable. I bought the bike complete. Out of the box the setup was easy putting the handlebars/stem on and the wheels.
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Old 01-16-21, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by MoAlpha View Post
Not quite a road bike, but I bought a built-up, 105-level, Lynskey Urbano in 2018 for commuting and gravel. It met my requirements quite nicely after replacing the crap original wheels with two sets of Hed Ardennes, shod with 25 and 36 mm tires, respectively.


looks like a road bike to me, and a nice one!
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Old 01-16-21, 05:53 PM
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I’ve got a T-Lab X3, which I sought because it is a unique and relatively rare brand with some really cool features. I bought it as a frameset, used, and haven’t finished the build yet, so I cannot comment on whether it was the right choice or not— in terms of ride quality and performance— but I wanted a bike for mixed road and fast dirt road, which could run fatter rubber, and again, was something different than the usual Ti suspects.
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Old 01-16-21, 06:09 PM
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I purchased a Lemond Victorie in 2000. It was a factory replacement from Trek for a Klein that had a frame part failure (Klein was out of business, purchased by Trek).

I found the frame very flex in the bottom bracket, would get F derailer rub when I stood on the pedals. I resorted to a Campy derailer and shifter as they allow greater trim points.

Then the original paint started flaking off within the first year. Trek took the frame back and repainted. That paint started flacking off within a few months and Trek refused to re-paint, so I had it painted locally.

Then a crack developed on the downtube near the shift cable stop. Trek refused to deal with it as I had the frame painted locally, which voids their warranty.

I threw the frame in the garbage about 2 years ago.

I would love to own another Titanium, am shy about the risk for a flexy frame, but love the look of a polished frame. Would never get a painted frame, I’m told only Serotta did a decent job with paint on Ti., Trek obviously had no clue.

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Old 01-16-21, 06:15 PM
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I bought a Lynskey a few years ago and I've been very happy with it. The model name at the time was Peloton, though it has been renamed a couple of times. It was their lowest cost road frame and coincidentally the lightest. I asked for the one that rode most similar to steel. It's straight gauge, not butted. I bought the frame and fork directly from Lynskey and built it up myself. I've been through a couple of different component configurations, currently using 8000. I like that they are built here in TN. The family has a long history in the bike business and in Ti industrial products prior to bikes. I have a half dozen riding friends with Lynskeys and I've heard no complaints. Interestingly, Moots is the most popular Ti brand in my group. Probably 3:1 vs the Lynskeys.
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Old 01-16-21, 06:33 PM
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In 2017 I purchased a used 2003 or 04 Airborne Zeppelin, mostly Ultegra 6500. Other than the wheels, it was in really good shape and the initial cost was $630, including shipping. Soon after acquiring it, I purchased a new set of Vuelta Corsa SLR wheels, tires, brake pads and chain. Over time, I have also replaced the cables/housing, cassette, chain rings, handlebar, stem and saddle. So, somewhere around $1200 and the bike is like new, other than the decals. The bike is light, fast, comfortable and handles very well. I think the only draw back for me is the tire clearance, 25mm tires in most brands.

I have been very pleased with the bike. I had wanted a titanium bike for a while, but did not want to spend the amount of money a new one would have cost. However, if I was in the market for a new bike, I would now seriously consider doing that. IMO, the ride and durability of a well put together ti bike is worth the investment.
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Old 01-16-21, 07:02 PM
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I have a Habanero with custom (made to my measurements) geometry. I bought the frame and had a LBS help me with the build.

I am quite pleased with the results. However if you have a normally proportioned body you can likely get stock/standard geometry.
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Old 01-16-21, 07:12 PM
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Bianchi Ti Mega Tube. I bought it because it's a Bianchi and very unique. I love it.



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Old 01-16-21, 10:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
I purchased a Lemond Victorie in 2000. It was a factory replacement from Trek for a Klein that had a frame part failure (Klein was out of business, purchased by Trek).

I found the frame very flex in the bottom bracket, would get F derailer rub when I stood on the pedals. I resorted to a Campy derailer and shifter as they allow greater trim points.

Then the original paint started flaking off within the first year. Trek took the frame back and repainted. That paint started flacking off within a few months and Trek refused to re-paint, so I had it painted locally.

Then a crack developed on the downtube near the shift cable stop. Trek refused to deal with it as I had the frame painted locally, which voids their warranty.

I threw the frame in the garbage about 2 years ago.

I would love to own another Titanium, am shy about the risk for a flexy frame, but love the look of a polished frame. Would never get a painted frame, I’m told only Serotta did a decent job with paint on Ti., Trek obviously had no clue.
I bought a used Seven in 2012. It's quite stiff, similar to a CAAD 5 I used to have. It's a great bike except for the bone jarring ride on bad roads. It's partially painted and it hasn't flaked but it will chip if I bang it into something. It's hard to get paint to stick to titanium, I hear.
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Old 01-17-21, 05:49 AM
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I’ve never heard Ti is hard to paint, before. I know it’s not necessary to paint Ti in order to have a nice, finished, protected, and durable product, unlike with steel and aluminum, and the brushed, natural Ti finishes are easy to maintain and refresh, too. We see similar habits to leave unpainted stainless steel and carbon fiber, for the same reasons or so I thought. It also seems lots of Ti builders have been painting Ti frames for a long time, so I’m surprised to hear it said the material is particularly hard to paint.
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Old 01-17-21, 06:07 AM
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Apparently best way to paint Ti is with Cerakote. Where is @indyfabz??
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Old 01-17-21, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
Apparently best way to paint Ti is with Cerakote. Where is @indyfabz??
cerakote is not paint, though. It’s a great ceramic coating, but very different from paint.
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Old 01-17-21, 06:54 AM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
cerakote is not paint, though. It’s a great ceramic coating, but very different from paint.
Let’s put air quotes around “paint” and call it even?
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Old 01-17-21, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
Let’s put air quotes around “paint” and call it even?
Well, how about we call it finishing, and be more precise? I just want to be clear that Cerakote doesn’t tell us anything about whether Ti is hard to paint.
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Old 01-17-21, 08:33 AM
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I was looking for a travel bike for randonneuring and to get everything in the case and keep it under 50 pounds titanium is hard to beat. My Seven has S&S couplers, eyelets for rack and fenders, Campy SR 11 and a 46/30 powermeter crank. There's no off-the-peg bike like that. Interestingly, Seven was the most common brand on the Iron Porcupine 1,200k last year and four out of five Great Lakes Randonneuring board members ride a custom Seven. Titanium is a very popular choice among the experienced long-distance crowd who are mostly over 50, can afford to ride a nice bike, but aren't necessarily super concerned about having the lightest bike they can get. It's never someone's first bike, so by the time they get one, they know that's what they want and are pretty happy with it. I've noticed with many people getting into randonneuring, they start with steel or carbon and eventually end up with titanium. Not everyone, of course, but it's a pretty common progression. I love all my bikes but ride the seven the most miles by far. I may replace components but expect to keep the frame until I'm too old to ride it anymore.
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Old 01-17-21, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Well, how about we call it finishing, and be more precise? I just want to be clear that Cerakote doesn’t tell us anything about whether Ti is hard to paint.
Paint
1. a colored substance which is spread over a surface and dries to leave a thin decorative or protective coating.


Cerakote
Cerakote is a ceramic based finish that can be applied to metals, plastics, polymers and wood. The unique formulation used for Cerakote ceramic coating enhances a number of physical performance properties including abrasion/wear resistance, corrosion resistance, chemical resistance, impact strength, and hardness.
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Old 01-17-21, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Paint
1. a colored substance which is spread over a surface and dries to leave a thin decorative or protective coating.


Cerakote
Cerakote is a ceramic based finish that can be applied to metals, plastics, polymers and wood. The unique formulation used for Cerakote ceramic coating enhances a number of physical performance properties including abrasion/wear resistance, corrosion resistance, chemical resistance, impact strength, and hardness.
Genius. A Casio G-Shock and Big Ben are both clocks, but aside from being timekeepers, one doesn’t tell you anything about the other. Call it paint if you want, but leave it to more discerning minds to discuss finishes, how about that?
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Old 01-17-21, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Genius. A Casio G-Shock and Big Ben are both clocks, but aside from being timekeepers, one doesn’t tell you anything about the other. Call it paint if you want, but leave it to more discerning minds to discuss finishes, how about that?
Carry on with semantics then.
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Old 01-17-21, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
Apparently best way to paint Ti is with Cerakote. Where is @indyfabz??
Right here. Right now.

Bad photo taken before a bath. Custom Cerakote mix of Zombie Green and gloss white. I don’t care for bare ti. Drew has said that he won’t build you a bike without at least one in-person fitting, but times may have changed that. He also owns a LBS so it was built and built up at the same place. I ride it 12 miles home from the shop. There’s still a wait. My ex is having one built. I got mine before he was making disk brake versions.

No. 22 or whatever it’s called makes some slick looking anodized ti frames.


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Old 01-17-21, 10:30 AM
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Let's see if we can get away from the BF typical dick measuring contest over some insignificant and irrelevant matter of semantics (seriously? Getting into an argument over the definition of paint? You guys must be the life of parties) and get back to talking about Ti bikes.

And on that note - I had a Lynskey Sportive. Got it because a sportive geometry actually works quite well for my freakish body proportions (very long legs, short torso). It was a very comfy ride - and in terms of speed, it didnt seem to give up much compared to my carbon bikes. I have done some of my fastest efforts on it, despite having nothing aero on it. But it was also - dare I say it - a little boring. The same vibration absorption that made the bike comortable and efficient for long rides also made the bike feel a bit dull and boring (emphasis on feel - as I said earlier, the actual speeds were fine; it is just the sensations werent as exciting).

Were I to do it again, I would get a version with a slightly beefier BB, to improve the ride feel a little. Otherwise, a really sweet ride. I dont really see the point of paying $4-5k for a Ti frameset when Lynskey does a top notch frame for such a reasonable price.
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Old 01-17-21, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
I was looking for a travel bike for randonneuring and to get everything in the case and keep it under 50 pounds titanium is hard to beat. My Seven has S&S couplers, eyelets for rack and fenders, Campy SR 11 and a 46/30 powermeter crank. There's no off-the-peg bike like that. Interestingly, Seven was the most common brand on the Iron Porcupine 1,200k last year and four out of five Great Lakes Randonneuring board members ride a custom Seven. Titanium is a very popular choice among the experienced long-distance crowd who are mostly over 50, can afford to ride a nice bike, but aren't necessarily super concerned about having the lightest bike they can get. It's never someone's first bike, so by the time they get one, they know that's what they want and are pretty happy with it. I've noticed with many people getting into randonneuring, they start with steel or carbon and eventually end up with titanium. Not everyone, of course, but it's a pretty common progression. I love all my bikes but ride the seven the most miles by far. I may replace components but expect to keep the frame until I'm too old to ride it anymore.
I got a Ti frame because I wanted a nice, quasi-utilitarian, commuter (kind of like my over-50 contemporaries with their exotic SUVs, but two orders of magnitude cheaper) and CFRP made no sense for a frame which was going to be locked to a U-rack in a garage every day. Bike has already been in a serious hit-hít-and-run from behind with no damage to the frame. Rub marks and scratches on the brushed finish are easy to buff out with a green pad.

Last edited by MoAlpha; 01-17-21 at 10:57 AM.
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Old 01-17-21, 11:01 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
No. 22 or whatever it’s called makes some slick looking anodized ti frames.
I have a friend with an amazing anodize finish on his Ti Firefly, which they’re famed for.
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Old 01-17-21, 11:50 AM
  #25  
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I bought a Bianchi Ti Megatube >20 years ago, not knowing how fantastic the bike was at the time; I only knew it was a great deal since the owner couldn't ride it (contracturally, his race team just signed a deal with Klein) and he needed to get rid of it. I happened to have a student loan disbursement, so... and I still have that bike today.

I more recently got a '97 Litespeed Catalyst frame and built it w/a secondhand Campagnolo Veloce 10 speed groupset. All in it cost me around 1400euro, much less expensive than buying new.

It seems much more difficult to find good secondhand groupsets now, so buying a new complete Ti bike might be the best, fastest way to go.

I'm not heavy (74kgs most days), and don't abuse my bikes, so I can't comment on the frame "flexing" so much one way or another. I only know both these bikes are very light and super-smooth. They're >20 years old and just as nice as the new carbon bike I picked up in August.

Am I glad I bought Ti? Oh yes. I'm vain, and when you've stopped for coffee w/your mates and everybody turns their head to check out your bike and ignores everyone else's incredibly-common Giant/Specialized/Cube, you feel chuffed. (This is especially true of the Bianchi - it's like owning a ******g Lamborghini, you'll climb over three Ford Mustangs to get a closer look.) Who doesn't like their ego boosted? Plus you can justify wearing the most ridiculous celeste-coloured jerseys.

Otherwise, they ride beautifully, climb easily, and smooth out rough roads.

That said... don't discount modern carbon. As I mentioned, I got my first carbon bike back August, a Planet X EC-130E, and I really like it too. It'd be half the price of a new Ti bike, so if you're on a budget, keep that in mind.


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