We built a stainless steel endurance bike with S&S couplers for Philip who travelled across the Atlantic to have a bike fit with us. After riding carbon for many years he borrowed a friends Cinelli XCR frame and immediately fell in love with how smooth the ride was. He wanted a bike that was stiff and light combining the qualities of his Pinerello F10 and his old Giant TCR, and something that he could travel with.
Stainless steel is the lightest material we build with. It is also much stiffer than all other carbon steels such as Columbus Spirit, Columbus HSS and Reynolds 853 so this fitted all of Philips wishes. We also machined two custom stainless steel S&S coupler brake bosses specifically for the bike. These are just a little bit longer than regular brake stops allowing for larger brake cable clearance.
As a regular visitor to the Swiss Alps and Taiwan the S&S couplers allow the bike to be taken apart and packed into a hard travel case no bigger than a suitcase. Sram Red AXS groupset also makes travelling simple due to the elimination of wires. Gravel and multi-day endurance was also high on his list so a perfect fit, which was compromised previously, was of great importance.
For the finish, House of Kolor Teal Candy was used for the main colour keeping the stainless steel of the chain stays and the couplers exposed and our Saffron logo was painted in gold to compliment this classic colour.
“I have had around 800km on this bike so far, around 200km are off
road. The bike rides quite differently to the XCR frame I borrowed, I
think it damps the road vibration a bit differently and feels a bit
more stiff especially on a climb. It is comfortable and fast on the
paved road, but I think off road is where it really shines. I used
put a lot of gravel miles on my Pinarello F10 (yes… I ride my F10
off road), but after the first few minutes riding my Saffron off road,
I knew I couldn’t go back to carbon anymore. I think the bike really
damps out the road vibration, and makes the ride a lot more
comfortable, yet I think it steers well and responsive to pedaling.
I think the frame and the fitment are both excellent, so no complaints
there. The paint job is beautiful, I really loved the Candy paint, it
gives the bike a unique look as the color changes subtle under
different lighting situation.
I’m really impressed by how the bike rides and performs, and most
importantly, I really enjoy the process from designing to delivering
this bike. I’ve already starting to think about designing my next
Saffron…maybe a steel fixie…?”