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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy to all y'all 29er enthusiasts, and believers in the American dream. As many of us have done, we've searched and searched and searched for a reasonably priced steel hard tail, built in the US of A. And much to our chagrin, we've found only Taiwan and China on the market, or we've been scared away by the incredible price tags of those artfully wondrous steel "custom" bikes. Well if you're like me, you ride your bike, hard. And for me I'd rather plummet down the hill on American steel than Taiwanese steel, and I'd rather do it in a Rubicon than a Ferrari.

Well here it comes, the Rubicon of hard tail trail bikes. American Hardtail is in the final stages of perfecting our prototype for STEEP, our trail specific, aggressively geometered, vertical foot destroying machine. And yes, "geometered" is not a word, we know. And yes, we know the name sounds like a porno.

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By later this summer, we'll be in full production. We are in the process of building a new e-commerce website to process orders. Also, we will have the frames available one of the major online retailers.

Just below is the description of STEEP, our first frame. Specific geometry is not something we want to give out yet. But I'll say this, she's loose where you want her loose, and tight where you want her tight. The tubes are thin where they need to be, and fatty mc-fatty where they need to be.

STEEP

Inspired by, and designed in the High Rockies of Colorado, STEEP likes steeps, both up and down - winding, switching, flowing, dropping, steeps…in both directions, at random, fast!

A blend of True Temper tubing with stainless steel highlights, this frame is built to last. With a nod to tradition and the unmatched ride quality of good American steel, the frame goes modern with 12x142 rear axle spacing, tapered head tube, and cutting edge geometry perfected over decades of trial and error.

Oversized in just the right places, yet trim where it can be, American Hardtail's STEEP is a streamlined, aggressive trail bike, optimized for powerful confident climbs, hairpin quick corners, and fearless decent and drops. It's designed in Colorado, and built in Oregon with steel from the USA. What more could you want?!

This IS NOT, a cross country trail bike, in the three water-bottle carrying, stretchy jersey wearing, shaved legs sort of way.

This IS however,an all day, all-mountain, 30 mile epic through your local range sort of trail bike - just carry a hydro pack, as the frame has no braze-ons, for cages or bags.

This IS a full speed, vertical eating, power house, that wants to go up just as bad as down. And yes, a lot of bikes say that, but look at the geometry, hoist the Stars and Stripes, strap on your helmet, and point it.

See you on the trail!

Please check in with us at www.americanhardtail.com. The current site is just temporary. In the next few weeks the complete e-commerce site will be up and running. These things take time.

Thank you all for your support and enthusiasm.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the add-on Slow Danger. I missed adding that. Yes, as of now, the frames will sell for $1100. We feel that's a great price for a True Temper frame, handmade in the USA. The frames are coming along nicely. Please keep an eye out for us in late summer.
 

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What the heck is wrong with water bottles? I thought it was unamerican to have a wet back... But really, what would be so terrible about a couple of water bottle mounts? If you're a Camelbak guy, then don't use them. Options are nice to have.

Also, I see no mention of whether or not it can be built as a single speed. Given that most geared drive trains are made overseas and White Industries freewheels are made in the USA, a single speed is the most American choice. It's also the tough guy choice so you can't possibly be using gears or you are a pathetic weakling.

I'm mostly yanking your chain, but seriously, if it isn't single speed capable and has water bottle mounts, I'll just stick with my Honzo, thank you very much.
 

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I would imagine the lack of options has more to do with a price point. The more add ons and options each individual frame has the more time and money required. Eventually the frame cost is the same as everyone else's. I could also be completely wrong and American Hardtail actually has a deep rooted hatred for water bottles.


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Water bottle bosses don't just mount bottles of water. They can hold flasks and pumps too. I guess it's un american to get flats and drink whiskey. Seems like poor design to eliminate them just for the heck of it.
 

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I am going to agree about the braze-ons. I don't always use them on every bike but it doesn't change the fact that I want them on every bike. I could add them myself but just not interested in voiding a warranty, matching paint, etc.

Also I am with Cotharyus on this one. I would want a SS friendly frame in a hardtail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
American Hardtail. Steel Mountain Bikes. Made in the USA.

Thanks for your thoughts folks. We are still up for debate on the SS option. From the sounds of it, we better go with it. Personally, my only SS is my messenger frame. I know lots of riders like SS, but frankly, you just can't ride the terrain for which we have conceived this frame without at least a 1x10 or 2x10 which is what I use.

Sliding dropouts to take Paragon hangers are on the drawing boards for the final frame. So from the sounds of it, we'll keep them.

With regard to braze-ons for bottle cages. I just don't agree with anything hanging off my frame. I've never used a bottle, don't ride with anyone that does, and don't plan to have the option on these frames. We will come out with a more cross country oriented frame in the future, that will have them. As for your flasks and pumps, by all means, fill them with American whiskey, and just put them in your pack with your pipe, like I do. I laugh at/with all the carbon heads out there on the trail with me that are scrapping nano-pounds off their $8000 bike and then hang a pound and a half of water off it. Just doesn't make sense.

And yes, $1100 is very reasonable for a frame built in the USA, by and industry legend, with American steel. Kona, Niner, Jamis, Transition and others are charging very near that for bikes made in China and Taiwan. Take a look at other made in USA bikes, and the price of their frames - Indy Fab, Seven, Soulcraft, Breadwinner, and tell me that $1100 isn't a fair price.

Thanks again for all your thoughts. Please keep them coming. The vote is YES for SS, and NO for cages.

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Yep, I will probably never buy another frame unless it comes with a SS option and although it seems you have already made a decision, I wouldn't consider a bike frame unless it has at least 1 set of braze-ons, whether its Carbon or XC or All-Mountain or whatever. One of the few things I didn't like about my Honzo was that it only had 1 set of mounts. I hate to wear a pack and put it off as long into the summer as possible. Plus, on my long days when I have to wear a small pack and need more than water, where on earth will I put my bottle of "American Made" sports drink of choice.

Good Luck on your venture but if you plan on selling to folks other than yourself and those you ride with, you may want to consider the requirements of other people riding in other terrains.
 

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No bottle cages, because YOU don't like them? Have you been in the retail business before. I friggin' hate having anything on my back when I ride, and I like having a water bottle or two to drink from. I like the idea of the bike, but seriously, what would it hurt to give folks the option of water bottles?
 

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Thanks for your thoughts folks. We are still up for debate on the SS option. From the sounds of it, we better go with it. Personally, my only SS is my messenger frame. I know lots of riders like SS, but frankly, you just can't ride the terrain for which we have conceived this frame without at least a 1x10 or 2x10 which is what I use.

Sliding dropouts to take Paragon hangers are on the drawing boards for the final frame. So from the sounds of it, we'll keep them.
Are you only making the frame to sell in your area?
If so, there is a Colorado forum you may rather post in.
If not then listen to your national customers.

Single Speeding is growing and Single Speeders are hitting steep, gnarly terrain and riding distances. I love mine and although it is not the bike I usually chose for the super gnar I do ride it a lot. (FYI, I live in Western NC near Pisgah so yeah we have gnar).

Well, at least you seem to be adjusting on this one. I would also consider making able to go belt drive. The Gates Center Track is amazing and more and more people are starting to realize it. But that is just me.

With regard to braze-ons for bottle cages. I just don't agree with anything hanging off my frame. I've never used a bottle, don't ride with anyone that does, and don't plan to have the option on these frames.
Ok, now you are only making frames for you and your friends.

Maybe instead of posting them on a public forum you should just e-mail your friends. ;)

Seriously, almost everyone has said they want them. Nobody will not buy a frame because it has braze-ons but people will not buy a frame because it doesn't.

We will come out with a more cross country oriented frame in the future, that will have them. As for your flasks and pumps, by all means, fill them with American whiskey, and just put them in your pack with your pipe, like I do. I laugh at/with all the carbon heads out there on the trail with me that are scrapping nano-pounds off their $8000 bike and then hang a pound and a half of water off it. Just doesn't make sense.
So it makes more sense to have a 10+ pound pack on your back instead?

Your logic is illogical.

And yes, $1100 is very reasonable for a frame built in the USA, by and industry legend, with American steel. Kona, Niner, Jamis, Transition and others are charging very near that for bikes made in China and Taiwan. Take a look at other made in USA bikes, and the price of their frames - Indy Fab, Seven, Soulcraft, Breadwinner, and tell me that $1100 isn't a fair price.
I am not going to argue if the price is fair or not. I see frame prices all over the carts and yours seems to be averagely priced.

I also like the idea of buying American but my finances are limited and I buy the best I can buy for my dollar. Plenty of frames from Taiwan are going to be every bit as good and possibly better for less money.

I love my Spot Brand Honey Badger. It is fast, comfortable, nimble, durable, has braze-ons, tapered head tube, single speed, and uses belt drive. It is the true do anything hard tail. So, it is made in Taiwan but they paid attention to detail when building it.
 
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