Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikes

Example: History:Ted Ernst

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Date: Thu, 14 May 2009 12:06:30 -0400
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Subject: Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikes

Hello all,For many years there has been a feeling that steel, as a bicycle frame material, has reached the end of it's life. Certainly in our time there are many more options for frame materials than ever before. With massive factories producing inexpensive plastics and aluminum alloys, this is no surprise.Steel is a material that has a long and storied history in our collective cycling culture. From the first truly successful frames to the current ultra light butted tube beauties, steel has been unrivaled in it's applications.For a company like Merckx to discontinue the building of steel frames is a bit sad, poignant perhaps, since Eddy Merckx achieved his finest victories on bikes with steel frames. But in a struggling economy, it may well be that Merckx steel frames were simply a losing proposition, and the decision to discontinue production was based on an accountant's bottom line. Sad.However, steel is far from dead. From my own admittedly limited perspective, I see a resurgence of steel. From the younger riders learning to appreciate the qualities of a steel ride to the seasoned riders who realize the true beauty of the material, the body of steel riders seems to be growing. One has only to consider the current activity in the custom frame market to see this. While it's true that this market is also suffering from the economy, it shows every sign of growing as the economy recovers. There are more steel frame builders coming up than ever before.0It may never be that steel frames will be produced in the quantities that they were in the past. But I do not think that steel will die in the marketplace. It is simply too versatile. It is up to the current and future frame builders to showcase the strength and beauty of steel and keep it alive. And it is up to us, as consumers and advocates to take an active part in insuring it's survival.Yours in appreciation of steel,Chris WimpeySan Diego, CaliforniaUSAWhere today I will definitely be riding a fine steel frame.-----Original Message-----From: Dave Porter <>To: 'Cheung, Doland' <>; 'CLASSIC RENDEZVOUS' <>Sent: Thu, 14 May 2009 7:52 amSubject: Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikesThis quote from Richard this morning: "in the bigger picture, the sun hasset on steel for mass market bicycles atmo.e-RICHIECTR" I hope he's wrong!DavePfrogeye@porterscustom.comPorter Customs 2909 Arno NEAlbuquerque, NM USA 87107505-352-13781954 BN2 1959 AN5Porter Custom Bicyclescars: Message-----From:[] On Behalf Of Cheung, DolandSent: Thursday, May 14, 2009 8:43 AMTo: CLASSIC RENDEZVOUSSubject: Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikesI thought I read earlier this year that Mr. Merckx sold the business toretire. My guess is that he was one of the last believers in quality steelrace bikes. Not surprising, but it's still a shame. Ernesto dropped theMasterlight and quickly brought it back, so there must be some sort ofmarket there, outside of this list.Doland CheungLA, CA-----Original Message-----From:[] On Behalf Of Angel GarciaSent: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 9:20 PMTo: CLASSIC RENDEZVOUSSubject: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikesThis was posted in a forum from a guy that just visited Merckx in Belgium:"I saw Mr. Merckx in the back office. He walked by me. I greeted him and heextended his arm and we shook hands. I asked him if there was a list to lookat and possibly purchase framesets. He said to his knowledge there was andhe would send a colleague out momentarily to assist me. Based on Eddy'sresponse, I was pretty excited at this point to talk to his assistant.Shortly thereafter, Eddy's colleague came out from the factory back door.This was the same guy who took care of me with the TSX Corsa Extra and MXLMoltenis. I asked if I could see the steel list. He said the list was gone.Additionally, he said there were no more steel frames in any sizes andmodels whatsoever in the factory....."Angel GarciaLong Valley, NJ-- You may enjoy reading my