a Cross Country Rider
from Ukiah, Ca. USA
Date Reviewed: March 30, 2002
Strengths: Stiff in BB, but nice ti ride. Beefy looks, nice finish.
Weaknesses: none so far
The only sub thousand dollar ti frame that is suitable for riders over 165 lbs(I'm 185). Due to my limited aerobic capacity I tend to hammer more than spin and the BB area on this frame is perfectly stiff. Handles great, very stable (for a XC hardtail) on fast descents yet allows me to pick tighter lines than my previous bike. Just yesterday I cleaned a downhill, slow, off-camber switchback that I normally click out for. Frame is perfectly straight and the welds are real nice. It only took a few rides to realize that this may be my last hardtail and after my first long ride I felt at home like I'd ridden the lucky strike for years. If you're a light rider and a lottery winner buy a merlin or a seven, they're works of art, or you can pay double for a litespeed. Personally I like a stiff bike, but was tired of getting beat up by aluminum and I don't like rear suspension without a throttle. Straight guage ti tubing turned out to be perfect, and I believe the more expensive double butted bikes would ride like noodles. If you're light buy a corsair, they're less expensive and my friend and fiancee just bought two and they both love 'em. Also, great customer service at airborne-these guys ride alot and actually answer the phone. If you are in NORCAL purchase from San Anselmo Cycles, GREAT SERVICE! Buy it.
Similar Products Used: Cannondales, fishers, marins.....
Bike Setup: Pace EVO3's, hope disks, use, middleburns, XTR, SRAM, hope wheels, Monkeylites.
from Granby, MA, USA
Date Reviewed: August 3, 2001
Strengths: The customer support is the best, the frame workmanship is outstanding, and the price is unbeatable!
Weaknesses: The weakness is that it's a newer company-so some people put them down. People who dont know the frames and dont know the company have a tendancy of putting em down with no support of thier negative opinions. If they took an Airborne out for a ride their opinions would change.
The Lucky Strike is outstanding!!!! I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for the last hardtail you'll ever need. Very durable, tight, not too flexy, not to rigid. It's perfect! Corrosion control is the best on a Ti frame too. I have the 16" and it weighed even less then Airborne spec'd it. 3.4lbs.
I raced for 2 years in Florida back in 1995, 1996 on my Jamis Dakar. I also did Mt. Snow in 95, and 96, and Helen GA in 95. The 95 Dakar is a great design, but I wanted a Ti frame to see what all the hype was about.
I just started racing again June 26, 2001 on the Lucky Strike. Took 1st place last week and moved up this week into sport & took 1st place again, in Easthampton, MA Thursday Nights. I am getting faster every day of riding, as I am getting used to being on a hard tail. I'm 5'9" and 155lbs.
It's much more direct when you peddle than being on a full suspension too = more efficient.
Talking to the guys at Airborne, I could immediately see that they are very nice, down to earth people who treat their customers like friends. Thanks Jeremy & Michael.
Bike Setup: OK so I'm old school. But I'm changing things this week. RST - MOZO 3.5" travel, Paul's Brakes, Pauls Front/Rear Deraileurs (still work great), TNT Ti HUBS/Bottom Bracket. These were my sponsors back in 1995/1996. (Took 5 years off of racing) New Mavic 618 Ceramic Rims, Mosquito Air Lite 2.0 tires, Kooka Cranks, King Headset, Richey Stem, Ringle Moby Post, Grip Shift with 8 speed.
Date Reviewed: July 31, 2001
Strengths: geometry, seems to be indestructible, weldings, stiffness AND confort, lightness, price, look
Weaknesses: poor quality of the (beautifull) decals. It seems that aiborne has solved that problem now with a new process
If you are a long distance rider and don't want to spend a lot of money on FS, this one is for you. I have ridden around 2.500 miles in the belgian mud and on rocky tracks and the frame still looks like a brand new one, except the decals. I have lost one of the two chicks on the top tube. I have told Airborne europe and they have send me new ones (decal not a girl). The price was around 880 euros , shipping included. Live time warranty is a good idea, because i intend to keep that frame for a long long long time.
Bike Setup: SID XC 01, Mavic CrossRide ceramic (best value !!), Avid arch rival 50, XT transmission
a Cross Country Rider
from S. Pasadena, CA
Date Reviewed: July 22, 2001
Strengths: durability, hill climbing, frame finish, customer service, low price
Weaknesses: none ,so far!
I have this bike for 2 and a half years and have no problems with the frame. I've put 1600 miles on it on So Cal trails riding with Merlin and Dean owners. I've also packed it up for rides on family vacations to Jackson WY, Moab UT and Phoenix AZ. It climbed great on the Slickrock Trail.) The TI finish is great: it won't scratch or rub off. (I wish I could afford one of their road bikes.)
Similar Products Used: Specialized, Gary Fisher Paragon
Bike Setup: SRAM drivetrain, Rock shox Indy SL w/ Englund air inserts, Raceface cranks & rings, ATAC pedals
a Weekend Warrior
from Vacaville, CA, USA
Date Reviewed: July 21, 2001
Strengths: The tail has a very compliant ride whilst remaining stiff for climbing. The rear drop outs are quite robust with excellent welds throughout. Bent stays make for excellent clearance for feet and tires. The decals are low profile and actually enhance the beauty of the bike, unlike the unremovable glaring neon billboard style that major manufacturers use.
Weaknesses: Lateral stiffness suffers slightly on the front end which could be the result of the squished tube at the head. The bottom bracket threads were not completely cleaned (factory) prior to installation and I had some annoying creaking for a few rides.
If you want a bike that won't rust, looks very nice (although somewhat typical in geometry), great decals, great price and warranty, then get a Lucky Strike. Steel is nice but Ti is better. It appears robust enough so that it could survive major jumping. With a bike like this you don't have to say anything, they just know.
Similar Products Used: Ritchey Super Comp (hand built), Specialized Stumpjumper
Bike Setup: SID 80, Interloc bar/stem/seatpost/prototype wheelset; Avid brakes; King headset; Shimano components elsewhere
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: July 20, 2001
Strengths: frame strength and great feel. I am a BIG guy (6'3" 250lbs) and this frame will take all the abuse I can give it. Also has a great feel when climbing/descending.
Weaknesses: No Clear coat on the graphics---VERY minor but still it would help it look better longer.
I was a litte skeptical at first due to the great price for a ti frame but this bike rules! This is the best bike I have owned. I am a big guy who dosen't always pick the best lines but this bike never complains. I would recommend this frame to anyone. Depending on how you configure it, you can have a superlight bike or a super bullet proof bike. The ti material gives a great feel without being harsh--bewarned, once you go ti you will never want to go back! The service is unparalled. It is simply the best! Always willing to help. I ride both road and mtb and I will buy their road frame soly based on the excellent expierience I have had with airborne.
Bike Setup: 2001 Sid Race, SRAM 9.0 products, Race Face headset and crank, Spinergy Xyclone wheelset, XTR brakes, Kore stem, Easton Monkeylite riser bar, ...
Date Reviewed: July 11, 2001
Strengths: Inexpensive,good flex,feels sturdy
Weaknesses: the decals are put on cheap, but the chick in the red bathing suit is close to the stem and protected, aireborne does not give as many amenities when you buy the frame as compared to full set up.
Great bike a an excellent price, After riding on my one bike for three years I had been dreaming about a TI frame for some time. I wanted to get a lightspeed but the toccoa was 1,800. the cheapest one they had was the pisgah was nearly 500.00 more than the airborne. as for the merlin's and seven-forget about it. after much debate I went with the airborne. I also purchased the rockshox '01 sid sl from them which was at a good price compared to online bike stores. Ti frames are great. my alluminum frame beat me so bad that I had to use a suspension seat post. the Ti offers enough flex that I don't need one. in the two months I've own this bike I have put about 300 miles of off road riding and one race. the only problem I had was the stickers are scraping off. People speak bad about the bike because it is made in China and you should by American. Just remember where shimano comes from. another problem I had before purchasing was the fact that Huffy is owns Airborne. But then Ford owns Volvo, jaguar, and Land Rover. I'm not one to talk bad about other bikes and the litespeed is a great bike but extra 1,200 just to pose went against my reason I ride. Airborne is a great with good customer service
Similar Products Used: Cannondale caad2 and caad3 f2000,trek y-3
Bike Setup: XT all around,Rock shox '01 sid sl,mavic crosslink,
a Cross Country Rider
from Egg Harbor Twp N.J. USA
Date Reviewed: March 26, 2001
Strengths: The frame is great. It is vertically compliant. It really takes the edge off bumps similar to what a soft tail feels like.
Weaknesses: There is lateral flex at the front half of the bike. While riding, I can twist the front half of the triangle while applying force on the handlebars. This does cause the front end to be a tad less compliant than a "just point and shoot" front end.
This frame replaced the Specialized FSR XC crap ball I had. I was so sick of hearing excuses for my incorrectly welded FSR poop frame that I sent the frame back to Specialized and told them to shove it. They in turn finally sent me a 2000 frame which I've have since sold. I built this frame up, gave up two and a half pounds and is vertically compliant so I don't feel like I'm losing much in tracking. I feel like I have purchased a product that will last a long time, won't give me headache after headache, offers a great ride, and it is very economically sound. You really can't beat it