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Product Review: Lynskey R150 Titanium Road Frame 2018

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Titanium frames have had a dedicated fan base for decades; they’re revered for their ‘bike for life’ reputation and this R150 Titanium Road Frame hits the mark once again. The modern cycling era may be flooded by carbon fibre but titanium frames have a place in the market. With a classic finish, a sport geometry, and built for longevity, this R150 Titanium Road Frame is a lightweight, stiff, and responsive work horse.

Designed for comfort, you can enjoy long solo days chasing the sun on this R150 Titanium frame. Customise this titanium frame and sit atop a reliable, strong, and light steed.

Features:

  • Material: Titanium (frame); Aluminium (hanger)
  • Classic finish
  • Sport geometry
  • Straight gauge tubeset
  • Curved seatstay
  • Bosses for two water bottle cages
  • Bottom Bracket: 68mm Threaded
  • Brake Type: Caliper
  • Dropouts: With replaceable aluminium hanger
  • Headtube Design: 1-1/8″ Straight steerer fork only
  • Maximum Tyre Width: 28c
  • Rear Spacing: 130mm
  • Seatpost Diameter: 27.2mm
  • Seat Tube Diameter (front derailleur clamp size): 34.9mm
  • Wheels: 700c

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Lynskey R150 Titanium Frame Review:

Frame

The frame of the R150 is made from 3/2.5 titanium, which is a fairly light, stiff and durable frame material. It can be tricky to work with when building a bike, but the Lynskey titanium frames are relatively straightforward to work with. When working with titanium it’s important to use lubricating oil (like this one) and be careful when tapping threads as titanium will strip fairly easily.

The frame features curved seatstays which help keep the back end of the bike from bobbing up and down on full suspension bikes; it also provides a little more comfort than straight seatstays. The seat tube clamp diameter is 34.9mm and the seatpost diameter is 27.2mm. This frame is compatible with all 27.2 and 26.9 seatposts.

Bottom Bracket

The Lynskey R150 is designed for use with threaded bottom brackets, featuring 68mm threaded bottom bracket. This will be compatible with a number of frames.

Headset

The R150 is designed for use with a 1-1/8″ straight steerer fork and features a straight gauge H11/44 head tube. This straight gauge head tube provides a solid and rigid fit and works with a number of forks on the market.

Rear Spacing

The Lynskey R150 features a rear spacing of 130mm. For most builds, you’ll require a 130mm rear wheel.

Seatpost

This Lynskey R150 is designed for use with 27.2 and 26.9 seatposts.

Titanium

Titanium is a notoriously tricky material to work with and is traditionally an alloy, however some modern bikes are being made completely out of titanium (like the Lynskey R150). It’s a relatively new material in the bike market compared to steel and aluminium and is used by some bike builders as a way of being innovative and interesting.

Some of the issues that come with a titanium bike are compatibility issues. Titanium doesn’t work with the same components as other alloys, meaning you need to make sure you’re using a titanium-compatible crank, headset, bottom bracket and even some wheels. It’s also difficult to work with, ‘titanium taps’ are required, and it isn’t great for a home mechanic to work on because it can’t be drilled.

Advantages of the Lynskey R150

Titanium is an alluring material to work with and it can be extremely light. You’ll find that bikes made out of titanium, especially the Lynskey R150 and R200, can be very stiff and can provide great power transfer.

It’s a very strong material and the Lynskey R150 will easily last you for years and years. This particular frame has been around for a number of years and has been refined as the brand continues to grow and succeed.

Disadvantages of the Lynskey R150

The first drawback to titanium is the price. It’s strong, it can be light, and it can be durable, but it’s also expensive. The Lynskey R150 is a fairly affordable option when it comes to titanium, but when you can get a carbon road bike for the same price for that comes with a warranty, it doesn’t make much sense to spend that much on a frame that you can’t integrate components into.

Another issue is the lack of compatibility. Once you purchase a titanium frame, you’re limited to components made for that material. There are more and more products making their way onto the market, but it’s still a fairly small market. If you crash hard and need a frame repair, it can be difficult to get back up and running.

The Lynskey R150 will also need to be maintained more often than a steel or aluminium alloy frame as a titanium frame can degrade if not properly cared for. The frame will oxidise and pit if, for example, you don’t wax it and take care of it like you should.

Alloy or Carbon

Always consider the benefits of other materials that are lighter and cheaper, but not as strong, like aluminium or carbon fibre. Bikes like the Lynskey R150 are marketed as being as ‘the best of both worlds’ but there’s really no trade off. Some of the advantages of carbon are that it’s strong, durable, and cheap – they’ll also come with a warranty and will be much easier to repair in case of an accident.

The Lynskey R150 is an excellent frame, and the Lynskey R200 is one of the best quality frames available, but if you’re looking for a road bike and you’ve got a budget of $3,500 AUD it would be better to spend that money on a bike.

Read more reviews or buy here

Written by Mark Adams

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