Most steel tubing sold by the major brands is truly terrible for modern bicycles. The tubes were largely specified back in the 1970s for hobby builders to replicate road racing bikes. I’ve been asking tube suppliers for years for better tubes to select from. I’ve generally been ignored. Years have gone by like this.
Back in 2017, I had some special seat tubes made for me that I also sold to others that were interested. That was a pretty cool thing for those that were wise enough to get some. Nothing has appeared anything like them since except now, it’s what everyone wants. Sometimes, it takes 4 years for folks to realize that you’ve been correct all along.
Early in 2021, I had my fiasco with the top tube failure on the Spitfires, I was forced to look at all the ways to solve the problem. I came up with a short term solution that got that bike up and running. Other solutions would take time. This was an important development. I’d found the limits of what could be done with existing tubing. This was awesome as I have clearer vision for changes that needed to be made.
Yesterday, I finally received the product of that wait, the PVD ‘Super Ultra’ Top Tubes. They aren’t exactly what I would have done if price is no object but at my scale, I’m pretty stoked.
1.125″ x 730mm long. A nice thick 1.2mm butt at one end and 0.8mm straight for the rest of the tube. I can use these for any size bike I imagine. This is going to open up a lot of possibilities in design and give the frames durability that they needed. It’s really going to be a while before I run out of tube now.