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British made steel framed road bikes?

MeonwaraMeonwara Posts: 2
edited March 2009 in Road buying advice
Hi there,

I'm getting back into cycling after several years and I am also new to Bikeradar so forgive me if the two questions I want to ask sound daft or have been asked before.

Firstly I am thinking of buying a new bike, not for anything competitive, just for swift progress around town and fun on country roads. I have a rough idea of what I like which involves a lugged steel frame of traditional style and I would really like it to be British made. Could anyone list companies that fit the bill?

Secondly, in my view most of the modern frames I see are rather ugly and look a bit like kids BMX frames, why are they like this?

I do have a couple of old bikes, a Pashley (nice but ludicrously heavy) and my old 10 speed racer that I rebuilt years ago but it really isn't a great quality machine. I guess I'm looking for something like the latter but better.



  • croggycroggy Posts: 116
    Great frames and good service.Highly recommended.
  • ride_wheneverride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    Loads of good steel frames. Some very good frame builders, although not all use lugs anymore. Try bob jackson, i know a few people with really nice BJ frames.
  • sicrowsicrow Posts: 791
    I'd add Brian Rourke in Stoke on trent to that list as well
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    You can add Chas Roberts and Paul Hewitt to your list too. Be wary, there are some 'UK' builders who have the frames built abroad and then just get them painted and sticker-up in the UK.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • cedargreencedargreen Posts: 189
    I can recommend getting a custom built steel frame.

    I got a Brian Rourke a couple of years ago, the whole experience was a pleasure, I spent a whole afternoon getting sized up and choosing components etc.

    The result is a beatiful bike which feels just right. It has a TIG welded frame though, I think they will do lugs if you prefer - I seem to remember seeing a couple in the shop.

    I would do a search on the internet; Bob Jackson, Mercian, Woodrup, Longstaff, Roberts, spring to mind. I think most of Condor's frames are now Italian.

    There are probably many others but steel frames are now a niche market and builders depend on reputation or word of mouth as much as advertising.

    In theory, custom frame builders will build what you want; in practice most have their own 'design philosophy' with regard to frame geometry, construction (lugs vs weld) etc.

    You also need a fairly clear idea of what you want- e.g. mudgurd clearance, components and so on. Whatever you decide enjoy.
  • alienalien Posts: 54
    I'd add Paul Villiers to the UK Builders list. He can do everything steel including 953.
  • SunWuKongSunWuKong Posts: 364
    +1 for Woodrup cycles, my LBS and always helpful.
  • acorn_useracorn_user Posts: 1,137
    There is a list of framebuilders on the Ceeway website. It's probably not totally comprehensive, but it's a good starting place. You could also ask around in your local clubs - you may have more luck in CTC type clubs than in the racer clubs though.
  • nickwillnickwill Posts: 2,735
    I've recently posted about my new made to measure steel frame from Paul Hewitt
    I am absolutely delighted with my frame which was my second from Paul Hewitt.
  • Slow DowncpSlow Downcp Posts: 3,041
    Mercian Cycles - as far as I'm aware all frames are still hand made in Derby
    Carlsberg don't make cycle clothing, but if they did it would probably still not be as good as Assos
  • NuggsNuggs Posts: 1,804
    Enigma make a very nice looking steel bike. Best looking bike at the Cycle Show last year, IMHO.
  • Slow DowncpSlow Downcp Posts: 3,041
    Nuggs wrote:
    Enigma make a very nice looking steel bike. Best looking bike at the Cycle Show last year, IMHO.

    I'd second that - but it is lugless.
    Carlsberg don't make cycle clothing, but if they did it would probably still not be as good as Assos
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