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

Example: Events:Cirque du Cyclisme:2004

Date: Thu, 14 May 2009 08:48:36 -0700
From: <>
To: Dave Porter <>
References: <> <> <4B1A913AD47F49DEA38B106ED5D308DB@oscar>
In-Reply-To: <4B1A913AD47F49DEA38B106ED5D308DB@oscar>
Cc: "'Cheung, Doland'" <>, 'CLASSIC RENDEZVOUS' <>
Subject: Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikes

I very highly doubt this...

Steel absolutely refuses to die...period. And Reynolds with Stainless 953 and Columbus with their latest XCr...keep bringing the strength up - corrosion resistance up - and the weight down.

Had an email chat awhile back when making inquiries to suppliers in Taiwan...met a gentlemen working for an OEM company that produced TIG welded Cro-Mo and 853 frames - relabels for unmentioned brand names. During our chat - he indicated that they just couldn't keep up with demand.

The reason that myself and a few others came up with is that Aluminum is showing a certain limitation...

Aluminum is outstanding overall for weight + performance versus price. However

it doesn't have the longevity that manus originally thought it had - aluminum frames under regular use do seem to crack earlier than expected. Typically sometime past 5 years on average. There are folks out there who due to having a couple cracked aluminum frames themselves - or observing the experience of others - take a look instead at steel or titanium.

Steel seems to hold out longer - Titanium even longer. Of course, Titanium is awfully expensive.

Surly's sell, LeMonds sold just fine, Tommasini Sintesi's and Tecno's sell just

fine as well. People buy 'em - and in Tommasini's case are willing to pay a premium.

My guess is - Eddy Merckx Co. is not calling it guits on steel - but rather - all you'll see from here on out is Spirit and XCr with carbon stays and forks.

I.e., no all-Spirit or all-Thermacrom bike - but rather hybrid steel/carbon.

Will the sun set on standard dimension and shaped "traditional" all-steel tubing bikes - welp - that's another discussion.

Robert Shackelford San Jose, CA USA

Quoting Dave Porter <>:
> This quote from Richard this morning: "in the bigger picture, the sun has
> set on steel for mass market bicycles atmo.
> I hope he's wrong!
> DaveP
> Porter Customs 2909 Arno NE
> Albuquerque, NM USA 87107
> 505-352-1378
> 1954 BN2 1959 AN5
> Porter Custom Bicycles
> cars:
> gallery:
> blog:
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Cheung, Doland
> Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2009 8:43 AM
> Subject: Re: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikes
> I thought I read earlier this year that Mr. Merckx sold the business to
> retire. My guess is that he was one of the last believers in quality steel
> race bikes. Not surprising, but it's still a shame. Ernesto dropped the
> Masterlight and quickly brought it back, so there must be some sort of
> market there, outside of this list.
> Doland Cheung
> LA, CA
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Angel Garcia
> Sent: Wednesday, May 13, 2009 9:20 PM
> Subject: [CR] End of an Era re: MERCKX (KOF) Steel bikes
> This 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 he
> extended his arm and we shook hands. I asked him if there was a list to look
> at and possibly purchase framesets. He said to his knowledge there was and
> he would send a colleague out momentarily to assist me. Based on Eddy's
> response, 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 MXL
> Moltenis. 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 and
> models whatsoever in the factory....."
> Angel Garcia
> Long Valley, NJ
> --
> You may enjoy reading my blog: