I've been meaning to write this post for quite some time. Every so often, I check in to the Blogger stats for this site. Sometimes, there will be a bunch of visits from various bike forums. I gave up on bike forums several years ago. Too much time involved and the whole anonymity of the thing is a big turn off. However, I do appreciate it when folks post links to my site pointing folks to something I wrote or to my road or cross frames.
I'm not sure where the term "deal-breaker" came from or how it came to be used as frequently as it does within modern lexicon, but I find its use in regards to my frames interesting. Like the fact that the monster cross frames are designed around cantilever brakes and not disc brakes is a deal-breaker for some.
The other popular deal-breaker is that there are no seatstay braze-ons for a rear rack. To be honest, the lack of seatstay rack braze-ons was one of those "doh" moments. Something that doesn't take away from the overall ride of the bike, but adds a level of versatility. They didn't make it on the frame because I don't ride with a rack and never even thought about them. It also seems a lot of folks really don't like p-clamps. I don't know why. I've seen plenty of touring contraptions come through my shop with a multitude of p-clamps securing racks and fenders and trailers to all manner of bikes from carbon race bikes to rickety old Free Spirit 10 speeds. I also did a cross-country tour on a mountain bike with p-clamps securing the rack to the seatstay. Some of that tour even included some pretty rough off-roading across the La Sal Mountains and across Pearl Pass. The rack, bike, and p-camps are still all in my possession and completely usable today 23 years later.
I'm not going to beat the p-clamp to death and am happy to say that the second production run of monster cross frames (ready to ship from Taiwan very, very soon) has seatstay braze-ons for rear racks. Disc brakes, however, will have to wait. This run of frames is rim brake only. Why? Because there are still a lot of folks who like rim brakes. They are simple and work great. Yes, I get that disc brakes have scads of power, but most people, myself included, don't need all that power. And yes, I know all the pluses of disc brakes. I also know that the frame and fork have be beefed up and then the frame that got the nice review in Bicycle Times won't be the same. As the reviewer, Karen Brooks wrote: "Some steel frames feel like lumps of lead to me, but this one has a light and lively personality." Light and lively is my goal.
These frames are a reflection of me and the type of bikes I like to ride. I'm also a bit of a Luddite, curmudgeon, throw-back... and so I like canti brakes. In fact, the more technology and "new" is forced down on me, the more I retreat. Don't fear, disc brake folks, I am working on a disc version. It's just going to take a bit of time because I am reluctant to give up my deal-breaking canti brakes.
(What's playing: The Beastie Boys Railroad Blues)