Looking fast even when it's propped up in the stairwell, the Kinesis KR-510 SPF is a brand new frame for 2009 from a company well known for their good value offerings both on and off-road. The KR510 is aimed at racers on a budget; for your £649 you get the Alu/Carbon frame, headset and semi-deep section RC05 Carbon bladed fork.
The SPF in the moniker stands for SuperPlastic Forming, which an updated process based on Hydroforming that uses higher temperatures. The benefit is that thinner walled tubes and even more complex shapes are possible, and the KR510 shows some touches – for example the flared seat tube that hugs the profile of the rear wheel – that are unusual on an Aluminium frame, especially at this price. SPF forming is also used to create the profiles of the top and down tubes, the top tube sporting a triangular profile and the down tube a tear drop section at the head tube and wider profile at the bottom bracket.
The seatstays are a 'tuned carbon wishbone' - we're not sure how this differs from an ordinary carbon wishbone, or even if non-tuned wishbones are available, but it's a nicely finished component, even if the big 'CARBON FIBER' sticker is a bit unnecessary. Other than that the finish and graphics are great in understated metallic grey and white, which we definitely prefer over the red/white option. The frame is built using ‘Ultrasmooth Weld Technology' according to Kinesis, and the appearance is certainly tidy, somewhere in the middle of the line you'd draw between a chunky TIG weld and a fully finished and filled joint.
Our bike came built with Campag Centaur, TRP brakes, a Selcof Carbon 'post, Fizik saddle and Reynolds Solitude wheelset. It's not a deliberately feathery build but even so the weight of our 56cm bike was only 7.8kg (17.1lb), very respectable indeed. The KR510 is only available as a frame and fork in the UK though, so it's up to you and the contents of your shed what you dress it up with.
Sizes available: 47/50/53/56/59cm (centre to top)
Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.