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Best Titanium hardtail

whitedragon101whitedragon101 Posts: 95
edited March 2009 in MTB buying advice
A couple of years ago i decided to build my ultimate hardtail bike. I chose a Litespeed Pisgah 2006 Frame because it was massively discounted to 700gbp, they only had 16.5 inch left but I was told a small frame would be agile and I could raise the seatpost (I'm 6 ft). I rode this bike for 2 years to and from work in a mix of cross country and road (25km each way). Heres what I have found:

-Good acceleration
-Good climber
-very very comfortable ride.

-The front does feel squirrely down hill.
-I think I needed the 18 or 19.5 as it does feel cramped. I feel I want to reach a few inches forward to grab the bars. This fact also gives a flying over the handlebars feeling downhill.

I have been in New Zealand and riding trails on a Kona Kula 08 19" and loved it. It was stiffer, comfortable enough and most importantly gave HUGE confidence downhill. It also felt hugely chuckable. I felt I was riding behind the front wheel not being heaved over it. I couldn't do a straight speed comparison because someone has now stolen my Kona.


SO THE QUESTION (sorry for the long preamble)

Which titanium frame would you chose to give blistering acceleration/speed AND downhill/trail confidence?


  • The problem you get is that most Ti hard tail frames are built super light and are orientated at pure XC racing. There mostly not trail bikes. The Bianchi is quite a nice compromise its still a very featherweight XC racer but a bit stiffer than most. If your after something super stiff perhaps you should get a test ride on a carbon frame. I would recommend the Giant XTC composite. The weigh less than many of the Ti frames out there but are still very stiff and have a comfortable ride. Colnago have a nice one too but they cost a small fortune. Or perhaps you could just look at getting stiffer forks, stem, bard and or wheels. They can totally transform the bike you already have.
  • Eeerm, great ayton, you've forgotten one awesome Ti hard as nails trail bruser...

    Ti456!!!! They've got 18inch in, i ride an 18inch 456 and I'm 6 foot. Stick something like a pair of pikes or fox TALAS 32 on the front and then light but strong wheels and good finishing kit and you'll have a lightweight Ti bruser.

    Alternatively run it with a 29" front wheel and 100mm 29er forks, but a 26" rear wheel for a 10/10 bike that rides like an xc DH bike apparently.
  • Very true I had totally forgotten about the on one :oops:
  • dave_hilldave_hill Posts: 3,877
    Cove Hummer, too. And Cotic Soda.
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  • "Which titanium frame would you chose to give blistering acceleration/speed AND downhill/trail confidence?"

    My Jones
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    A Seven Sola? You could have it made to your specifications. That's as ultimate as it gets ;-)
  • John, is that one of Jeff's originals or one of the Merlin ones? A mate of mine has a Merlin one and it's awesome...
  • It's a Merlin, note the bend in the frame below the seat post on the down tub.

    Jeff couldn't do this bend (tube size) and say's the Merlins ride better than his because of it.
  • BlackSpurBlackSpur Posts: 4,228
    Charge Duster Ti is meant to be nice, too.
    "Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling." ~James E. Starrs
  • I've never really seen an original one so I can't really tell the difference from a snap, I know they have a cut out but that's about it. They are total works of art though, well pretty much anything Merlin get their hands on bike wise is in my opinion.
  • A Genesis Altitude Ti? I'm not sure you can get it frame only but the spec is absolutely ideal for the trails. A light XT groupset to keep the weight down but a Fox F120 to give some downhill confidence.
  • Thanks guys.

    I have had a lot of people recommend the ti456 I wasn't sure about these guys for two reasons.
    1) I'd never heard of them before and I had always thought with titanium an experienced production team is everything.
    2) It says the frame is stiff but it looks fairly whispy (compared to the pics of the Cove Hummer frame).

    However I looked at the Bikeradar review and it looks like they want to marry this bike and have its babies. ... -08--31339
    It is the first 5star review they have ever given. But what confused me is that while they say ti456 is the best, they also say Cove Hummer is the best. ... c-08-30772

    Cove Hummer VS On One Ti456
    Can anyone shed any light on which is better or how they differ? Thanks :)
  • VerwoodAshVerwoodAsh Posts: 196
    They tested the Cove Hummer in the issue before the Ti456.

    During the first test the Hummer was excellent - and it is a very very nice bike.

    But then later they tested the Ti456 - and felt that it gave an even better ride than the Hummer - thus why it became the "BEST".

    Now there are difference's between the two - the 456 has a longer top tube and is so suited to general riding giving you confidence in whichever direction you point the bike. The Hummer is what I would call more chuckable - and you can throw the bike around really well. It descends better in my book, but loses out for general all round riding to the Ti456 but it still does it bloody well.

    Neither are out and out XC machines and like longer forks and can be built up burly but light.

    Me - I have the Hummer as I got it before the Ti456 came out - but if I was choosing now then it would be a very tough decision between these two.
  • gcwebbyukgcwebbyuk Posts: 1,926
    Any ideas on the Marin Titanium Team?

    Saw it as a frame with £400 off the other day so now about £1000

    Can't see any reviews of it though
  • It really looks like a two horse race then. I think when spending that much money being able to actually try a few different sizes and ride the bike off road will be the only way to tell.

    Does anyone know if you can do a test ride of the ti456 and the Hummer. I am in Bournemouth (Dorset).

    Thanks guys :)
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Keep an eye on the geometry too - the 456 will take a 150mm fork. Many find it a bit steep at 100mm.
  • NorthwindNorthwind Posts: 14,675
    Thanks guys.

    I have had a lot of people recommend the ti456 I wasn't sure about these guys for two reasons.
    1) I'd never heard of them before and I had always thought with titanium an experienced production team is everything.

    The geometry etc is all tried and tested since it's all based on the 456, which is ace. Though as Supersonic says it's built to run longer travel- not a downside in my book but it might be in yours. The frame is made by Lynskey, so no worries there. If money allowed, I'd buy one of these tomorrow.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • LoUiS1985LoUiS1985 Posts: 841
    what about the Van Nicholas Mamtor?? they have had some good reviews and my friend is thinking about getting one, anybody know much about these?
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