Chinese CF frame or custom steel?

Especially for light weight issues concerning cyclocross / touring bikes & parts.

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dvincere
Posts: 204
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:40 pm

by dvincere

I have a deal where I can get a normally $2700+ steel custom frame by a local builder for $1500 (no fork). Or I can simply buy a Chinese frame for roughly $600 with a fork. The $900 is quite a bit. Would I honestly get something $900 better? It will be a CX racing frame. I haven't seen too many reviews on the Chinese CX frames -- I have seen a lot on the road frames.
Either way I think it will be a disc setup and I need to build up 2 new wheelsets to go with it.

by Weenie


KvnP
Posts: 152
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:12 pm
Location: Somewhere out there..

by KvnP

I'd go with the steel custom !

I'm currently running a custom CX Ind. Fab and previous = Speedvagen CX..
I've tried carbon CX frames which are nice although I'd stick with the custom steel as it will be something that should last you forever.
Parlee Z3c
Independent Fabrication SSR // 953
Independent Fabrication Planet X
Knolly Chilcotin

TimmS
Posts: 354
Joined: Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:46 pm
Location: Amsterdam

by TimmS

If you can afford it, why not go for the steel frame.
You will probably have longer and more fun of it as it is a unique piece!
The chinese frame is just ride and replace...

dvincere
Posts: 204
Joined: Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:40 pm

by dvincere

The custom steel would involved some tightening of the belt to be responsible. If I am struggling to save up for it (I refuse to buy anything on credit) it's a lot harder of a decision.

KvnP
Posts: 152
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:12 pm
Location: Somewhere out there..

by KvnP

Although if it'll be a ride that you'll keep for a long time/forever, it'll be worth it (that's if you ride it a LOT)
Parlee Z3c
Independent Fabrication SSR // 953
Independent Fabrication Planet X
Knolly Chilcotin

weenie
Posts: 88
Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2013 6:48 pm

by weenie

depends how you like bikes.
if you like a nice, unique bike that you can display, give affection to and keep, go with steel.

if you don't care and just want a bike that works well, but doesn't look special or something, go with the chinese carbon. bonus: cheaper, and you can replace it/crash it/etc without feeling nearly as bad ;)

so yeah, its not so much about what works better - they probably both work well enough - but what you like better.

dogg
Posts: 291
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 7:37 am

by dogg

if you're willing to throw down the cash id go custom, but i don't think theres really anything wrong with chinese frames. they sure are cost effective. but in the end it just comes down to what you want and how much money you're willing to spend.

1500 bones is a pretty good price on a custom though

Gunjira
Posts: 32
Joined: Mon May 30, 2011 11:41 am

by Gunjira

Definitely Chinese custom. It will be cheaper, lighter and stiffer. And you will cry your heart out once you break that custom steel frame. Which I did just two weeks ago.

FlemishCompact
Posts: 62
Joined: Wed Feb 12, 2014 11:56 pm

by FlemishCompact

If money isn't an issue, I say custom steel. Something about a handmade frame that screams to me. $1.5k is a damn good deal too.

gt5504b
Posts: 74
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2011 10:09 am

by gt5504b

How many other CX bikes do you have? If you have one or more and are really sure what you want, then go steel. But if you haven't put a season or two of racing in on CX bikes yet, go for the cheaper bike.
Wait for custom until you are sure, and then come back to it once you've saved up again.

Marin
Posts: 2580
Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Location: Vienna Austria

by Marin

Do you want light or heavy? The steel frame will weigh twice as much and will probably be a harsher ride. But then, weight and ride aren't everything.

by Weenie


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