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Verdict: 
If you want fast, comfortable, light, tough and good looking you can indeed pick all five. You will not be disappointed
Weight: 
8,100g
Kinesis GF_Ti Disc frameset
9 10

The Kinesis GF_Ti Disc is a jack of all trades – and a master of most. It's possibly the last bike you'll ever need to buy – for club runs, sportives, audaxing, commuting, Alpine breaks, touring, all-roading... the definitive 'N+1' killer: fast, comfortable, light, tough, good looking. Pick five.

Back in 2011 Stu gave the original non-disc GF_Ti 9/10, saying it 'delivers the goods on speed, lightness, comfort and longevity'. Then in 2013 he found the second iteration to have 'near superbike capabilities in a frame that is just as at home on the commute, audaxing, sportives and much much more. It's a looker too'. It got an 8/10, but only because the overall value proposition was lessened by the kit (Shimano Tiagra/R501 wheels) on offer.

This time round, it's just the frame and fork we're talking about.

> Find your nearest dealer here

The frameset on test is a 57cm, putting my 183cm frame at the higher end of the 174-184cm recommended range. (Kinesis now offers a 55.5cm version as well, reacting to market feedback that people found the 54-57cm jump a bit too far.) Set up with a 120mm stem, it felt spot on for my riding position. The compact ergo bar gave usable options, and I never felt the bike wanted for a lower position or sharper steering.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 1.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 1.jpg

With a head tube angle of 73.5 degrees it's galloping toward the racier end of the geometry paddock, where it runs up against the electric fence of a 1,005mm wheelbase and 420mm chainstays – so roughly somewhere in between 'nippy' and 'forgiving'. It's a nice balance that affords rear wheel clearance for fat tyres plus mudguards, and you don't want a skittish bike threatening to tip you into a hedge at the end of a long day out should you overcorrect.

(You'll find more facts and figures for the Kinesis here, in Mat's First Look.)

For us to test the frameset, Kinesis provided the GF_Ti Disc with its new multi-axle-optioned Racelight Disc wheelset, shod with new Schwalbe S-One 30mm tubeless tyres. It was also built up with full Shimano Ultegra 6800 and Shimano RS-685 disc brakes and Center Lock Ice Tech rotors. The semi-compact chainset came courtesy of Praxis & Turn. Suffice to say, shifting and braking performance were utterly flawless, with the fat tubeless rubber facilitating edge-of-reason braking tests under steering. In this guise the complete bike weighed 8.1kg.

First impressions

The first time out on the GF_Ti Disc I had planned to do maybe an hour's shakedown loop at an average pace. The build was brand new, and I expected a few niggles that would need tweaking. What it turned into was a two-and-a-half hour adrenaline rush, pushing deep into the North Hampshire Downs, seeking ever-steeper hills to ride up – and down again. The stability and stiffness of the frame and fork rewarded every turn of the cranks, with not a hint of flex when out of the saddle from either the front or the bottom bracket.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 3.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 3.jpg

It was possible to pick up a little bit of squirm from the front tyre, but that's 30mm running at 45-50psi for my weight, so hardly surprising when bent over the bar, and undetectable under braking or cornering at speed.

The ride was only cut short when I realised the bike had taken me outside my 'stored glycogen-café opening hours-distance home' envelope, so the final five miles back was alongside The Man With The Hammer, tapping lightly away at the seatstays. Do not underestimate this frameset's ability to make you feel a more capable rider than you are.

Over the following month a number of club runs proved the frame's ability to potter along perfectly happily, not feeling like it needed constant attention to steering – sitting up hands-free to don or remove a layer was ridiculously easy.

La Dolce Vita

A business trip to Rome was a welcome opportunity to see the GF_Ti Disc in tourist mode on a different side of the road. It easily fitted into the rather fab Evoc Pro bag, just the stem plate off and fork turned 90 degrees to fit the flat-mount calliper into the fork sleeve.

Rome wasn't built in a day, and they still haven't finished the roads, it seems. I lost count of the cobbled sections, but while my native Roman riding companions had initially scoffed at the 30mm rubber, as the ride progressed it was obvious I was able to stay seated while they clambered about their 100psi/23mm-shod stiff-as-you-like carbon whippetry looking for smoother lines and some relief from the almost relentless buffeting.

And yet when we dropped down off Monte Cavo heading back into the new university sector south-west of Rome, the GF_Ti Disc acquitted itself perfectly well as a four-up TTT machine on the buttery-smooth new roads (no, the photos aren't from Italy).

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 4.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 4.jpg

Entering Rome, my guide took me along the Aurelian Wall, where nipping in and out of traffic, cobbled and new sections, under arches and over speed bumps, the Kinesis handed me a third overall on the 2.6km segment. Not that Strava times should in any way be the main measure of a bike's capabilities, but at the end of a 1500m-climbing 90km ride, to feel fresh and confident enough to rip up a strange road and come third has to count for something.

Having tyres, fork and seatstays that smooth the ride makes for a happy backside and hands, and faster times, and I can honestly say I have never felt as comfortable or quick on any other bike. Comfort is relative, but after 40-mumble years running and riding, my joints and muscles have no compunction in making their presence known, should conditions dictate. Even with its fat 31.6mm seatpost, the GF_Ti Disc's ability to soothe the savage road must be without peer.

How the heck has Kinesis created such a ride? Well, let's start at the sharp end...

What lies beneath

The full-carbon Tracer Disc 1.5 fork is unique to Kinesis – you won't see this model available to other manufacturers – and it was designed with the GF and 4S disc frames in mind, for positive steering, comfort and clearance.

It has the largest dropout 'lawyer lips' I've ever seen – it takes seven full turns of the quick-release lever before the wheel can be dropped out, so don't expect to see it on the roof of a DS car anytime soon. That said, there are no concerns regarding the wheel shifting, let alone popping out under even the heaviest of braking. During the test period the QR was done up tight but not so much so that two fingers couldn't undo it, and no movement was discernible.

With 100mm standard hub spacing there's no issue with many available QR disc wheelsets. There's also a ton of tyre clearance to either side and between tyre and crown – with a 30mm tyre on the Kinesis Racelight Disc wheelset (19mm internal width) there's about 5mm either side and above.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - fork clearance.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - fork clearance.jpg

Halfway up the inside of each fork leg is a 4mm mudguard mount, and there's sufficient clearance at the rear of each dropout to fit a removable mudguard tab over the skewer. (With winter looming I fitted a set of SKS Raceblade Longs.)

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - front disc.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - front disc.jpg

Inside the fork crown there's a hole looking for all the world like a calliper mount, but it's got a metal insert to take a bolt for a mudguard or fixed light mount – audaxers and German lighting fans rejoice!

The tapered, integrated head tube is milled from a solid titanium billet, then beautifully engraved with two opposing Kinesis UK logos. The easily replaceable and available integrated FSA headset brings together what is a rock-solid steering package.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - head badge.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - head badge.jpg

This stability inspires all manner of confidence, such that the disc brakes and fat contact patch afforded by the 30mm tyres were necessary complements to keep the bike shiny side up. This is a bike that begs you to dive deep into corners hard under braking, in the knowledge that – unforeseen vehicles notwithstanding – you will exit in one piece with the biggest grin possible plastered across your face.

The proof has to be in the Combe Gibbet pudding. On the 'Britain's 100 Greatest Climbs' tight descent I had previously maxed out at 48mph on the fabulous Merida Ride 5000 Disc on a bone-dry midsummer's afternoon. The GF_Ti Disc gave me the confidence to match that on a misty, leaf-strewn November morning – and I reckon in the dry it would be good for another 3-4mph at least.

While you could argue that terminal velocity is not the best arbiter of performance, as anyone can simply 'not use the brakes', I was – like most people – coming at this descent with the view of wanting to be able to eat/walk/breathe afterwards. Ergo the sum of the frame/fork/wheelset/brakes/tyre gains equals fast, in control, in the damp.

Bringing up the rear

Moving rearwards, while the fork uses external cable routing, the frame's full internal routing is set up for mechanical or Di2 groupsets, using a reversible 'porting system' where you can change the supplied fittings, which include blanking plates for those choosing a 1X shifting system.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - rear dropout.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - rear dropout.jpg

The laser-etched Racelight logo on the down tube is guaranteed to look great for the life of the frame. At the bottom of the bi-directionally-ovalised down tube is a hefty junction with the bottom bracket shell, and a 68mm British-threaded fitting. This frame is built for longevity, ease of servicing and relatively low cost, and Ultegra-spec threaded bottom brackets are frequently available for under £20 and last a year or more of hard abuse.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - bottom bracket.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - bottom bracket.jpg

The chainstays meet the BB shell somewhat inboard from the edge, with a hefty bridge welded in behind but still affording plenty of clearance and a place to bolt a full-length mudguard to.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - stay clearance.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - stay clearance.jpg

The 'Anti-Roadshock Tuned Stays' must be the standout design feature of the GF_Ti Disc – it's impossible to view this bike from the rear without admiring the hourglass-esque curvaceousness on offer.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - seatstays.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - seatstays.jpg

Titanium is famed for being more flexible than aluminium, lighter than steel – but there's got to be design compromise when seeking optimal power transfer alongside comfort and, in this case, load-carrying capacity. The seat tube is much fatter than the current fashion, where shock absorption is delivered partly via 27.2mm diameter or slimmer seat tubes coupled with all manner of post-frame-flex wizardry. The GF_Ti Disc sports a 31.6mm seatpost, the story being that the larger diameter is required to afford the area and weld strength to connect the seatstays while also potentially supporting a fully-loaded rack on the adjacent mounts. Again the spectre of needing N+1 rears its head and is quickly exorcised, this being a bike you can potentially load up without a care, yet ride all day in comfort.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - seat tube junction 2.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - seat tube junction 2.jpg

At the bottom of the seatstays the cowled dropout junction offers lots of weld contact area, not least for the inboard flat-mount disc brake bracket – the party piece of this third evolution of the GF_Ti marque. With the chainstays having to spread wide to accommodate the disc hub, keeping the brake calliper as hidden as possible removes the risk of heelstrike. Even with size 45 winter boots on and a reasonably central ball-of-foot/pedal spindle alignment I never felt a single brush of the hardware on either side.

On the inside of the right-hand seatstay there's a lovely little chain pip, welded in place and ready to hang the chain on during any wheel-off antics. What there isn't is a braze-on for the front mech – with a clamp-on mech, the height is infinitely adjustable and if you want to go with a single ring there's no superfluous mounting hardware.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - front mech and BB.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - front mech and BB.jpg

In the fast-evolving all-road, all-year, disc-braked sector, Kinesis has gone for traditional 5mm quick-release skewers over thru-axles, citing Shimano's recent E-Thru release as reason to wait and see for a bit longer. Frankly, I never felt the frame or fork were wanting for solidity of hub interface. (As a note, the Kinesis Racelight Disc wheels provided for this review have adaptable hubs, so changing from 5mm to 12 or 15mm thru-axles is a £13 option in the future, should you go with Kinesis wheels for your build.)

Because it's worth it?

It's easy to become inured to the sticker price of review bikes when it's not your own cash, and the model on test would come in at about £3,500 as built. With £1,800 of that the frame and fork, the GF_Ti Disc would obviously be a once-in-a-lifetime purchase for most cyclists, even if they then coat it with used 105, cable disc brakes and hand-me-down wheels. As tested it's a 40th or 50th birthday present to self, an annual bonus instead of replacing the conservatory roof or taking the family to the Maldives.

> See more disc brake-equipped options for 2016 here

A large part of the value-for-money equation on a bike that should last you a lifetime is, 'will I be able to get a repair done, warranty claim honoured or replacement sourced in one, two, three or indeed ten, fifteen, twenty years?'

Kinesis offers a three-year warranty through its dealer network, and an out-of-warranty crash replacement service by negotiation with the Kinesis customer service team, which could go a long way to making an insurance payout-less-excess a lot more palatable.

Last rides

The final ride before handing the GF_Ti Disc back was with Kinesis brand manager and cyclo-cross semi-pro Bruce Dalton. Twice on the narrow Hampshire/Berkshire lanes I had to dive into the gutter to avoid startled supermarket vans and four-wheel-drives who clearly didn't expect people to be out on bikes in the morass of sodden leaves and mud coating the rural roads this time of year.

The handling competency afforded by the 30mm tyres, disc brakes and sharp steering meant events that on plenty of other bikes would have likely ended in a hedge or underneath a Mercedes Sprinter were no more than a blip in an otherwise fast and happy ride.

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 2.jpg

Kinesis GF_Ti Disc - riding 2.jpg

Is the Kinesis GF_Ti Disc the best frameset on the market? Obviously I've not ridden them all – no one has. But in my experience over the last six weeks, and as I said at the start of this review, if you want fast, comfortable, light, tough and good looking you can indeed pick all five. If you're willing and able to part with £1,800 for that package, you will not be disappointed.

Verdict

If you want fast, comfortable, light, tough and good looking you can indeed pick all five. You will not be disappointed

road.cc test report

Make and model: Kinesis GF_Ti Disc frameset

Size tested: 57cm

About the bike

State the frame and fork material and method of construction. List the components used to build up the bike.

AEROgrade brushed Ti3AL/2.5V frame.

Fork: 'TRACER DISC 1.5in Full carbon fork with Shimano 'Flat Mount' and mudguard eyelets.

Built with Shimano Ultegra and RS685 hydro disc brakes, Praxis Works / Turn crankset, Kinesis Racelight Disc wheelset.

Tell us what the bike is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about the bike?

This is a bike for someone who wants to ride far, fast, comfortably. The price says it's a major milestone bike, to be purchased and built up with care and attention.

Frame and fork

Overall rating for frame and fork
 
10/10

Tell us about the build quality and finish of the frame and fork?

The build quality cannot be faulted. Beautiful welds, seamless carbon layering, gorgeous lacquering.

Tell us about the materials used in the frame and fork?

AEROgrade brushed Ti3AL/2.5V frame.

Fork: 'TRACER DISC 1.5in Full carbon fork

Tell us about the geometry of the frame and fork?

It's designed somewhere between racy and audax-all-day. The measurements change over the frame sizes to maintain a geometry that is fast, yet stable and comfortable.

How was the bike in terms of height and reach? How did it compare to other bikes of the same stated size?

I found it about right for someone of my 6ft stature, with longish arms. I didn't want for a lower posture.

Riding the bike

Was the bike comfortable to ride? Tell us how you felt about the ride quality.

Fabulously comfortable. Cannot fault it. Forgiving, relaxing, fast.

Did the bike feel stiff in the right places? Did any part of the bike feel too stiff or too flexible?

Yes - the bike felt spot on, throughout. No issues, anywhere.

How did the bike transfer power? Did it feel efficient?

Very. Zero flex, every crank turn rewarded.

Was there any toe-clip overlap with the front wheel? If so, was it a problem?

Not noticeably, in my S45 booties with a central position.

How would you describe the steering? Was it lively, neutral or unresponsive? Neutral-to-lively. Interesting, without being skittish.

Tell us some more about the handling. How did the bike feel overall? Did it do particular things well or badly?

Confidence-inspiring. Relaxed, until you want to get a shift on, then it's responsive and fast.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's comfort? would you recommend any changes?

Fat tyres are the future, and few frames have the clearance this does.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's stiffness? would you recommend any changes?

As a frameset, there was no detectable flex in the power transfer chain, so there's nowt to improve.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's efficiency? would you recommend any changes?

As a frameset, it's Di2 ready, internally cabled and as aero as I guess a 'useful bike' can be.

Rate the bike for efficiency of power transfer:
 
10/10

Instant, amazing bearing in mind the fat tyres.

Rate the bike for acceleration:
 
9/10

It's not the lightest package overall, but for a 'useful' disc brake bike, getting up to speed happened pretty sharpish.

Rate the bike for sprinting:
 
10/10

Loved it. So stiff up front and down below, throwing the bike about was so much fun.

Rate the bike for high speed stability:
 
10/10

The longer wheelbase makes bombing runs so enjoyable.

Rate the bike for cruising speed stability:
 
10/10

Again, long wheelbase and medium fork angles add up to a stable platform for hands-on or hands-free cruising.

Rate the bike for low speed stability:
 
10/10

Perfectly able to turn in close to its own length.

Rate the bike for flat cornering:
 
10/10

Can't fault it. On an effective crit course around Rome it was up there with much 'faster' bikes.

Rate the bike for cornering on descents:
 
10/10

This bike will get you into trouble. And get you back out again.

Rate the bike for climbing:
 
10/10

The stiffness and heel clearance meant climbing was as enjoyable as it can be.

The drivetrain

Rate the drivetrain for performance:
 
10/10

Ultegra + Praxis = faultless.

Wheels and tyres

Controls

Your summary

Did you enjoy riding the bike? Hell_Yes.

Would you consider buying the bike? Yes. Just don't tell my wife.

Would you recommend the bike to a friend? Yes, if they could afford it. Otherwise no, as they'll just be sad knowing what they could have had.

Rate the bike overall for performance:
 
10/10
Rate the bike overall for value:
 
8/10

Use this box to explain your score

At £1800 'value' has to be nuanced. If you are in this sort of market, what does this deliver over the competition? English threaded BB, flat mount discs, rack mounts and clearance for silly-fat tyres with mudguards. I don't think anyone else offers this combo, and if they did it would be at about the same price. Then there's the faultless ride quality and knowledge of strong warranty backup. This all adds up to a very good value proposition. If you don't have £1800 to splurge then it's a moot point. Whilst other sites throw about 5-star reviews with abandon, here at road.cc Towers there's a process which involves a lot of consternation, teeth-sucking and navel gazing when anyone suggests adding that elusive half-a-star to round out a perfect score. To earn five stars a bike must be outstanding in every way. Mechanically, visually, and in almost every other way the GF_Ti Disc is just that. Price-wise it's on-par with the competition, ergo, the price isn't 'outstanding', it pretty much matches the market. Had it been, say, £1500, that would have been 'outstanding', and the 5/5 would have been justified. None of this makes it a lesser bike to ride, of course, and that's the long game.

Overall I cannot fault the package - this is a genuine bike-for-life contender.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 42  Height: 183cm  Weight: 72kg

I usually ride: Charge Juicer  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: A few times a week  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: club rides, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking, and Dutch bike pootling

47 comments

Avatar
LarryDavidJr [347 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Great, now I have drool over everything.

This frameset has now made it's place on the oft-updated "when I'm 50 present to myself" build spreadsheet.

Just 8 odd years to go ....

Avatar
GerardR [135 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

Looks lovely, but I'm still happy I bought a Pickenflick for less than half the price!

Avatar
KiwiMike [1285 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
GerardR wrote:

Looks lovely, but I'm still happy I bought a Pickenflick for less than half the price!

 

If you didn't need/want mudguard mounts, rack mounts, flatmount caliper mounts, and were happy with external cable routing and pretty slow steering (70.5 headtube and 1026mm wheelbase in the Large, ideal for its purpose of plowing through muck) then yeah, go with the Pickenflick. As On-One say it's a CX race bike - really not fair on either to compare it with the Kinesis GF_Ti, and if you wanted a genuine all-rounder to last you a lifetime you'd probably be wishing you spent the extra £800 once.

Avatar
richcc [64 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

That does sound lovely. I now have a (very theoretical) dilemma between that and a Mason Resolution...

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fukawitribe [1921 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes

Looks and sounds stunning, surprisingly short warranty though - indeed very short...

Avatar
macrophotofly [250 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Having just snapped a one year old carbon frame I am thinking seriously about a titamium bike, but a bit wary of the weight of them given I do lot of climbing (around 2000m on a ride and most of it in the 5-7% over 20km type). Any idea what this frame weighs (without fork)? I'm comparing with a Lynskey Helix disc which comes in at 1900g

Avatar
Alb [149 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
KiwiMike wrote:
GerardR wrote:

Looks lovely, but I'm still happy I bought a Pickenflick for less than half the price!

 

If you didn't need/want mudguard mounts, rack mounts, flatmount caliper mounts, and were happy with external cable routing and pretty slow steering (70.5 headtube and 1026mm wheelbase in the Large, ideal for its purpose of plowing through muck) then yeah, go with the Pickenflick. As On-One say it's a CX race bike - really not fair on either to compare it with the Kinesis GF_Ti, and if you wanted a genuine all-rounder to last you a lifetime you'd probably be wishing you spent the extra £800 once.

because steering speed is determined by HT angle alone

Avatar
KiwiMike [1285 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Alb wrote:

because steering speed is determined by HT angle alone

 

because that's exactly what I said.

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Low Speed Wobble [156 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Went titanium with Enigma. It may indeed be the last frame I buy. I'll update components, but with Ti frames' typically classic looks and great feel, these are the Aston Martins of the cycling world. They only get better as they get older.

Avatar
Low Speed Wobble [156 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
macrophotofly wrote:

Having just snapped a one year old carbon frame I am thinking seriously about a titamium bike, but a bit wary of the weight of them given I do lot of climbing (around 2000m on a ride and most of it in the 5-7% over 20km type). Any idea what this frame weighs (without fork)? I'm comparing with a Lynskey Helix disc which comes in at 1900g

My Enigma Elite is 1250g. What's a carbon frame? 900 for something that's pretty racy? Not a big trade-off for the comfort and longevity, is it?

Avatar
BikeJon [178 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

I'll resist the tempation to upload images of (one of) my Cielo Rosso Ti bikes (again) - check out the link to 'first look' article if you want to see it. But I found myself nodding along to all that Mike said in the review. I've found myself stunned by how good my Ti frame is - it's just fabulous to ride. My carbon bike just hasn't had a look in since I've had it (40th birthday present to myself - had to laugh at that part of the article lol).

I wouldn't get too held up on weights - yes it is heavier than my carbon frame (especially since I have disc brakes on the Ti) but that really doesn't seem to matter (yes really!). The ride is like nothing else - it's like riding on a magic carpet. I run 28mm Continental GP4000 S II tyres and these certainly help. Yet the bike can turn in a good turn of speed and is great on descents too. I've bettered some of my Strava segments (I don't race anymore) on the Ti frame vs carbon (including uphill ones). it's just really, really impressive.

This Kinesis looks and sounds fabulous. It's (very) similar to my CR with just some nice extra touches, like the engraved head tube and neat inserts for internal routing. My CR geomtery is no doubt closer to the On-One Pickenflicks but since mine is custom built (I ride cross bikes all the time due to a dodgy back) then that point is largely irrelevant, as I could specify what I wanted. 

I definitely give a big thumbs up to anyone considering this frame or other Ti frames in general. If you have all the fixtures and fittings like the one here, you really can do it all on a bike like this.

Oh and the Shimano RS-685 levers and hydraulic brakes are very impressive!

Avatar
700c [1076 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

I've ridden the original GF TI for several years, though currently waiting for a warranty replacement (don't let that put you off, I'm pretty hard on bikes!). Beware the lead time is quite long ATM for the rim brake version..

They're a lot racier than people give them credit for and I guess would be very comfortable with 30mm tyres at 45psi!!

I'm impressed the weight is kept so low despite the added material required for discs.. - my fairly high spec build is only 200g lighter with rim brakes on a 57 cm frame.

I would question the notion that this is a 'bike for life' though. ..For this to be a genuine contender, you'd need a longer warranty, surely? (I note that Kinesis have reduced theirs from 5 to 3 years recently. .?).

Otherwise I can highly recommend the brand. I don't think you'd be dissapointed and there's something about the metal that makes owners very proud - you'll want to clean it after every ride if you're anything like me. .

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CXR94Di2 [1556 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Ti frames generally weigh a few hundred grams more than an average carbon frame.  If its ultimate low weight you will need to stick with carbon.  Ti  will last a whole lifetime- excluding seroius damage in crash.

 

 I am seriously thinking of building a Ti frame and using my groupset off my Boardman when it fails, given my proclivity to crashing recently it wont take long  1

Avatar
Gasman Jim [190 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
macrophotofly wrote:

Having just snapped a one year old carbon frame I am thinking seriously about a titamium bike, but a bit wary of the weight of them given I do lot of climbing (around 2000m on a ride and most of it in the 5-7% over 20km type). Any idea what this frame weighs (without fork)? I'm comparing with a Lynskey Helix disc which comes in at 1900g

That 1900g weight for a Helix Disc can't be right. I have a 2013 Lynskey Sportive Disc (size ML = 55) and the frame is about 1300g. I don't think 1900g would even be an accurate F&F weight as my Spot Brand carbon blade / alloy steerer fork is about 450g IIRC.

I do a lot of climbing too (>500,000 ft per year, and as I live in North Wales lots of it is above 10%). I do notice the difference between climbing on my R3 (15.5lbs) and my Lynskey (20lbs including full guards), but I tend to use the R3 through the summer months when my fitness is at its best, whereas the Lynskey gets used through all the shitty weather either side of that, so there is a bit of a confounding factor.

If / when the R3 breaks, as I'm almost 45 now and probably going to race / HC / mtn TT less and less I doubt I'll bother with another carbon framed race bike.

Avatar
700c [1076 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
macrophotofly wrote:

Any idea what this frame weighs (without fork)? I'm comparing with a Lynskey Helix disc which comes in at 1900g

Should be a little lighter, though there are no weights specified on their site.. the regular version in a 57 is 1560g

And if the weight in the article is anything to by, it's giving virtually nothing away to the standard version - as I said the total build is within 200g of mine and that's with carbon tubs..

The stiffness will help in the climbs but ultimately you'll be giving away about a kilo to a top end carbon frame - but then you'll get down quicker on this! Swings and roundabouts I guess.

Avatar
couldgetacarforthat [19 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Probably the one bike that has caught my attention recently. The review just makes me want to buy one immediately.

I'm still confused by a comment from a friend who described Titanium as a problematic material that is subject to micro cracks. Is this true?

 

Avatar
BikeJon [178 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
couldgetacarforthat wrote:

Probably the one bike that has caught my attention recently. The review just makes me want to buy one immediately.

I'm still confused by a comment from a friend who described Titanium as a problematic material that is subject to micro cracks. Is this true?

 

Only if it were poorly manufactured. It isn't the easiest material to weld as the presence of any oxygen during a weld can give rise to cracking later. But there are a couple of techniques that avoid this issue. But this is one of the reasons Ti frames are quite expensive. But I suppose you could have manufacturing issues with any material so i don't think this is a specific reason not to get Ti (I'd also expect cracking issues to present within a warranty period).

I actually had such a crack in my original frame, which is how I ended up with two. But I had the crack repaired (£50). It's fairly unsightly but I got to keep the frame for no extra cost and it's fine for my winter bike. Happily my second frame is perfect.

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BikeJon [178 posts] 1 year ago
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CXR94Di2 wrote:

Ti frames generally weigh a few hundred grams more than an average carbon frame.  If its ultimate low weight you will need to stick with carbon.  Ti  will last a whole lifetime- excluding seroius damage in crash.

 

 I am seriously thinking of building a Ti frame and using my groupset off my Boardman when it fails, given my proclivity to crashing recently it wont take long  1

I see Boardman is another brand that is bringing out some titanium models. They looks pretty nice too.

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Sub4 [31 posts] 1 year ago
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macrophotofly wrote:

Having just snapped a one year old carbon frame I am thinking seriously about a titamium bike, but a bit wary of the weight of them given I do lot of climbing (around 2000m on a ride and most of it in the 5-7% over 20km type). Any idea what this frame weighs (without fork)? I'm comparing with a Lynskey Helix disc which comes in at 1900g

 

Similar to others, I have a superlight carbon summer bike. New for this winter/year is a Genesis Equilibrium Ti disc which is a similar spec, although I think the built up weight is at least 9.5kg (Mavic Aksium disc wheelset is fairly weighty!). I've been surprised by how well it climbs. Like Mike has said here, it depends very much on the power transfer. The Genesis is not a bendy Ti bike, & this review suggests the same for the Kinesis (only it appears to be lighter by a good margin). Does the Lynskey still have the pop riveted logo on the top tube? I saw them in the flesh at one of the shows & instantly feared for expensive bib tights & shorts across the globe!!!

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macrophotofly [250 posts] 1 year ago
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Yes it is the new Lynskey model with the riveted badge. I was staggered when I found out it was 1900g. The person weighing it for me assured me it was just the raw disc frame in medium with nothing else added. I was prepared for 500g over a carbon frame but a full kg seemed wrong.

Hoping this Genesis is more like 1500g and if so I will be queueing up to buy it

I really wish titanium frame manufacturers would publish weights. It annoys me so much that a manufacturer will publish the weight of their carbon frame and their steel frame, but not the titanium. I know it will be heavier than carbon, I just want to make sure it is lighter than steel, otherwise I may as well get a steel frame. Helping a customer to be informed allows them to make the right decision !

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Alb [149 posts] 1 year ago
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KiwiMike wrote:
Alb wrote:

because steering speed is determined by HT angle alone

 

because that's exactly what I said.

 

Apologies, overlooked that you'd also mentioned the all-important wheelbase too.

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robthehungrymonkey [165 posts] 1 year ago
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I've recently built up a Ti winter/rain/town/everything else bike, pretty impressed with it as a do-it-all material. My bike is surprisingly light (Van Nic Yukon from ebay, built up with 105 and hunt dura wheels), and is nice to ride. The bonus with Ti is you don't have to worry so much about scratchign it when locking it up and rust etc. It seams to be much easier to keep clean. 

My Trek Madone is still my bike of choice when it's sunny though, the Ti bike doesn't have the racy geometry and and just isn't as stiff. Going up and downhill it is just more fun. On my 50 minute "lunch" route, i'm about 2mph faster on it too (not that it matters, just interesting). 

I'd love to try this kinesis though, for one bike to do it all, i'd definitley pick titanium. 

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rjfrussell [357 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
LarryDavidJr wrote:

Great, now I have drool over everything.

This frameset has now made it's place on the oft-updated "when I'm 50 present to myself" build spreadsheet.

Just 8 odd years to go ....

 

It looks very good indeed.  I suggest that it may merit a crossing out of the "50" in the spreadsheet header, and a replacement of it with "45".

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StuAff [127 posts] 1 year ago
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Not long got a Litespeed T5 Gravel- equivalent to the Tripster ATR rather than the GF Ti Disc (there's also a T5 Disc, which is more like this frame though somewhat cheaper at the moment). Fantastic bike, and £1500 for a frameset at the moment. Not finding much difference in ride and handling to my carbon Viner, an excellent benchmark to be fair,  but the tyres are 35mm wired, I have a feeling more supple & possibly tubeless tyres will really show what it can do. Even now, it's very, very impressive. Smooth, stiff, and a very easy bike to do a century on. And (unlike the Viner) it'll take fat tyres, mudguards (creative solutions needed on the fork as no eyelets), and a rack. Great to see a number of excellent titanium bikes at this price range.

 

 

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GerardR [135 posts] 1 year ago
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KiwiMike wrote:
GerardR wrote:

Looks lovely, but I'm still happy I bought a Pickenflick for less than half the price!

 

If you didn't need/want mudguard mounts, rack mounts, flatmount caliper mounts, and were happy with external cable routing and pretty slow steering (70.5 headtube and 1026mm wheelbase in the Large, ideal for its purpose of plowing through muck) then yeah, go with the Pickenflick. As On-One say it's a CX race bike - really not fair on either to compare it with the Kinesis GF_Ti, and if you wanted a genuine all-rounder to last you a lifetime you'd probably be wishing you spent the extra £800 once.

Yes, but ...  I can fit SKS mudguards.  There are other ways (admittedly less tidy) of fitting panniers (or I can use, as I do, a seatpost-mounted carrier).  Flatmount caliper is simply the latest iteration: there'll always be another.  And for the extra (bit more than the £800 you suggest), I can buy the neat little Lumix GM-5 camera to take with me, as I have done.  Horses for courses: my course nowadays is a longer, slower one.

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124g [37 posts] 1 year ago
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Well I'm with GeradR on this having just bought an on one pick and flick titanium, total cost for the bike £1400 not jus the frame everything I note total cost for this bad boy is £3500 so where Kiwi gets his £800 difference I have no idea as thats £2100 in my math.

 

I appreciate the Kinesis is a wonderful bike and the on one doesn't have any rack or mudguard mounts but so what, I just used this Zefal Swan Road Rear Mudguard. Ive used it on a few routes locally and the difference between it and my old Boardman CX is a revelation. It climbs like a billy goat and is so quick it feels like cheating. The riding has been off road and on road so it's had a good outing to gauge how it copes. 

 

I appreciate there are some out there who will dismiss Planet X as not being quite there, trust me I bloody love this bike and when you consider what I paid I could have bought two and still had change of £700 over the kinesis as reviewed. To me thats a complete no brainer, the oney saved will pay for trips away on this bad boy.

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KiwiMike [1285 posts] 1 year ago
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124g wrote:

Well I'm with GeradR on this having just bought an on one pick and flick titanium, total cost for the bike £1400 not jus the frame everything I note total cost for this bad boy is £3500 so where Kiwi gets his £800 difference I have no idea as thats £2100 in my math.

RRP for the GF_Ti Disc frameset is £1800. RRP for the Pickenflick frameset is £1000.

£1800-£1000 = £800. What you decide to glue to the frame is up to you, in this case it was nice stuff.

 

124g wrote:

I appreciate the Kinesis is a wonderful bike and the on one doesn't have any rack or mudguard mounts but so what, I just used this Zefal Swan Road Rear Mudguard. Ive used it on a few routes locally and the difference between it and my old Boardman CX is a revelation. It climbs like a billy goat and is so quick it feels like cheating. The riding has been off road and on road so it's had a good outing to gauge how it copes. 

So what? I'd say a bike contenting to be N+1 killer (as is the premise here) bloody well does need mudguard and rack mounts. Plastic floppy afterthoughts that are likely to get broken/nicked in daily use are of no use. 

 

124g wrote:

I appreciate there are some out there who will dismiss Planet X as not being quite there, trust me I bloody love this bike and when you consider what I paid I could have bought two and still had change of £700 over the kinesis as reviewed. To me thats a complete no brainer, the oney saved will pay for trips away on this bad boy.

I have no beef with Planet X - more power to them. But in this comparison, no, you couldn't 'buy two and have change' - you'd have £800 spare from buying *one*, but also have to forever after live with flappy fragile afterthoughts for mudguards and no ability to carry more than a decent jacket and sandwich.

 

p.s. 2013 called - it wants its seatstay-mounted calipers back  1

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Ad Hynkel [151 posts] 1 year ago
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Oh dear, this is degenerating. A great review and a cracking looking bike. I come from a more traditional touring/utility bike back ground and this looks like it could be a handful loaded. This review has been billed as a possible N+1 Killer but I don't see photos or description of what it was like loaded up. Maybe I missed that? Also, how does it fare in the mud with proper knobblies on? I don't believe there is a real N+1 killer, but agree this looks reasonably close. I guess it depends on how wide your cycling roles net is cast.

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700c [1076 posts] 1 year ago
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Ad Hynkel wrote:

I come from a more traditional touring/utility bike back ground and this looks like it could be a handful loaded. This review has been billed as a possible N+1 Killer but I don't see photos or description of what it was like loaded up.

Agreed, it'll do a lot of things well but not convinved it's designed as a tourer or would take those kinds of loads. Yes wider tyres and disc brakes give versitility for winter but it's still at heart a stiff, light, efficient performance machine.  A 4-season-sportive-cum-race-bike, perhaps?

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124g [37 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
KiwiMike wrote:
124g wrote:

Well I'm with GeradR on this having just bought an on one pick and flick titanium, total cost for the bike £1400 not jus the frame everything I note total cost for this bad boy is £3500 so where Kiwi gets his £800 difference I have no idea as thats £2100 in my math.

RRP for the GF_Ti Disc frameset is £1800. RRP for the Pickenflick frameset is £1000.

£1800-£1000 = £800. What you decide to glue to the frame is up to you, in this case it was nice stuff.

 

124g wrote:

I appreciate the Kinesis is a wonderful bike and the on one doesn't have any rack or mudguard mounts but so what, I just used this Zefal Swan Road Rear Mudguard. Ive used it on a few routes locally and the difference between it and my old Boardman CX is a revelation. It climbs like a billy goat and is so quick it feels like cheating. The riding has been off road and on road so it's had a good outing to gauge how it copes. 

So what? I'd say a bike contenting to be N+1 killer (as is the premise here) bloody well does need mudguard and rack mounts. Plastic floppy afterthoughts that are likely to get broken/nicked in daily use are of no use. 

 

124g wrote:

I appreciate there are some out there who will dismiss Planet X as not being quite there, trust me I bloody love this bike and when you consider what I paid I could have bought two and still had change of £700 over the kinesis as reviewed. To me thats a complete no brainer, the oney saved will pay for trips away on this bad boy.

I have no beef with Planet X - more power to them. But in this comparison, no, you couldn't 'buy two and have change' - you'd have £800 spare from buying *one*, but also have to forever after live with flappy fragile afterthoughts for mudguards and no ability to carry more than a decent jacket and sandwich.

 

p.s. 2013 called - it wants its seatstay-mounted calipers back  1

 

Where do you get the figures you are quoting did you not read the total cost of this bike it states quite clearly as tested £3500 my complete build set me back £1400 I'm comparing what is on this test, Im guessing you've never used those rear mudguards ? I have and they have surived all I have thrown at them on my previous bike which was,  C2C off road route SDW twice and various trips to the peaks and wolds. As for having them nicked never had that issue either where do you live and leave your bike Moss side?

 

The other point raised is a little off the mark, I have a handlebar bag Carradice fitted which holds far more than you allude to, added to which should I need it the rear Super C SQR Tour, which again holds ample amount of kit. Check out the guys who bike pack you can carry kit needed other than on a conventional rack. 

 

At the end of the day you pays your money and takes your choice and I'm more than happy with what i chose.

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