Re: [CR] 753 v 531

(Example: Framebuilders)

From: <>
Subject: Re: [CR] 753 v 531
Date: Tue, 05 Jul 2005 01:28:05 +0000

Date: Mon, 4 Jul 2005 16:03:23 -0700 From: Kurt Sperry <> To: "" <> Cc: Subject: Re: [CR] 753 v 531

All of this raises the question: Is there a universal, easy and definitive way to discern if a given frameset is made up from plain guage or butted tubes? Kurt Sperry Bellingham WA Kurt:

Not really, but sort of, it depends. (How's that for a wishy-washy answer?) :-)

Plain-gauge will weigh a lot more, generally. If a vintage frame takes a 27.2 mm post, it's likely 531 DB, or one of the many Columbus DB tubing types.

If the seat post is more like 26.4, then you need to look further. It is rare to see a plain-gauge 531 frameset with high-quality forged dropouts, so forged dropouts are always a good sign. Not a guarantee, though.....

Generally, it always comes back to weight. A "vintage" road frameset made out of "typical" quality butted tubing (531, Columbus SL/SP, Ishiwata 022, Vitus 181, Tange Champion, etc.) will generally weigh 6-7 pounds, bare frame and fork. The variation is due to frame size, and tubing gauge, mainly. A little variation due to fittings also (mostly variations in crowns and BB shells - lugs don't really weigh a lot).

I'm not sure what a straight-gauge 531 frame would weigh - maybe 8 pounds or so? Anyone know for sure?

A "high-tensile" tubing frameset will weigh more like 10 pounds.

An early 753 frameset weighs about 5.5 pounds or thereabouts, unless it's "time-trial 753" which would be about 4.75 pounds or so.....

Your actual mileage may vary.... Don't quote me on this....


Greg Parker
Ann Arbor, Michigan