I have enough tubes to make only three more of these so they will never be quite the same when I run out of the True Temper S-3 downtubes. That said, I'll still make the model but it might be a tad different in terms of frame weight and ride characteristics.
The rest of the tubing in this frame seems to be still in production-being Columbus 'Spirit" and Life.....both are currently produced and in decent supply. It amazes me that there are manufacturers that make such specialized and esoteric materials for building custom steel frames. My thought is that nobody, not the builders, distributors or tubing manufacturers are making much money. I gues that we are all in it because it is what we care about. I am thankful that in my 41 years since I have built my very first frame that there has always been good steel available.
This frame is made from the very best steel I can get: Top tube is my last round S-3. Down tube is one of the last four S-3 bi-oval tubes. Seat tube is Columbus Life. Rear chain stays are Life and the seat stays are Spirit. The head tube is a tapered superlight from Nova. This frame weighs 3 lb. 15 oz.
This might be the sixth one of these that I have built in the last decade. I really like building a simple bike like this and try slightly different things on each one. This one will get the full Alfine-11 build with Hydraulic disc brakes.
The frame has the Jen Green copper headbadge and will get a Brooks saddle with some Nitto All-rounder bars, kind of like a cafe racer. The rider wanted a town bike with a slightly more efficient position than the typical upright style with swept-back handlebars.
Even though the bike really screams for them, there will be no fenders on the final build but there will be a rear rack and a kickstand. A townie without a kickstand is a townie in name only.
For twenty years I have been on start lines of CX and other races to hear right before the whistle the words :" Ride safe- have fun !". The person who has been saying these words at the start of over two decades of bicycle races is getting this frame.
It has been a good many years since this person has competed in bike races as he's been one of a small crew who run the CCCX series of road, MTB and CX races in the Monterey bay area. Without these races there would be hardly any events like this within an hour's drive from my home city of Santa Cruz. Myself and hundreds of other like-minded cyclists value what the CCCX crew has been doing to keep bicycle racing alive in Santa Cruz and Monterey counties.
So, it is a real honor to build this frame- it will be for gravel riding and racing for the most part so it does not have the flattened top tube for shouldering and it has three bottle mounts. The bike will be fitted with Shimano GRX Di II group. The frame weighs 3 lb. 8 oz.