A custom steel Spirit is the ultimate riders frame.
Light? Check. Comfortable? Check. Stiff enough to climb and race on? Check. Won’t smash into a million pieces in a crash or during overseas travel? Check.
This bike was designed as the bike to take overseas and to enjoy on the longer rides around Victoria. It’s the bike for the longs days along the Great Ocean Road or up at Bright where Beach Roads pot-hole-less buttery smooth roads do not apply. It’s a travelling companion, a best friend. And it looks good too.
The owner was considering a titanium frame but when weighing up the costs and benefits, decided to give steel a second thought. The steel frame builder at Cyfac has been with the company since it’s humble beginnings provding high quality steel frames to the European professional peleton. This frame was literally made by the incredibly skilled hands of a true French artisan builder. He filet-brazes the frame with attention and skill that cannot be replicated easily. The result. One classy bike.
The owners thoughts:
As a road bike enthusiast not fortunate enough to possess an ’off the rack’ body, I was more than mildly excited with the news that a custom bike shop boasting hand-made French frames was about to open just around the corner.
For me, steel was a no-brainer as a choice of material once Dan had run me through the various frame options. In addition to the quality of a hand-build, Columbus tubing offered a super durable frame that promised a smooth, comfortable ride at a fraction of the cost of both local and imported titanium frames.
Campagnolo Chorus was an easy choice of group-set. Light and robust with just the right amount of carbon. Deda components and Fi’zi:k saddles have been popular in the pro peleton over many years, and with good reason. The choice of Dedo Zero/100 bars, stem and post, topped by an Arione saddle, all perform to the highest standard, as well as developing the overall theme of the ‘Spirit’ – namely an amalgam of a classic quality French build complemented by bullet-proof and understated Italian components.
I am currently running Campagnolo Neutron Ultra wheels, which in tandem with the ‘Spirit’ frame and euro components provide a package reliable and light enough to tackle any ride, from the biggest cols to the slow, uneven roads often found in remote locales both locally and overseas.
My first impression is that the ride is very compliant. Not so soft as to lose ‘feel’, but buttery enough to absorb road shock. An essential quality for long rides over varied terrain and inconsistent road surfaces.
The bike also seems to ‘track’ very well – another must for those long days in the saddle. he bike goes forward effortlessly, without sacrificing the handling qualities necessary for riding confidently in big packs.
Climbing feels very natural – any small weight penalty compared to a super-light carbon frame is probably not as important as the rotating weight of your wheel set, or better still shedding a few of those excess kilos!
Descending is a joy – in part due to the longer stem permitted by the custom fit, but more likely due to the stability inherent in the ‘Spirit’ frame, which seems to be ideally suited to tackling even the tightest switchbacks.
In short, the ride quality of the “Spirit” exceeds my every expectation.
The finish is simply beautiful-attention to detail and pride in production is evident in each invisible weld. The faultless paint job and decals, as well as the Cyfac branded seat-post clamp and spacers, add just enough French class to satisfy even the most hardened Francophile.
Frame: Cyfac Spirit – Columbis Spirit tubing w/ Classic black & white paint scheme
Groupset: Campagnolo Chorus 11spd
Wheels: Campagnolo Neutron Ultra w/Panaracer Type D tyres
Bar/stem: Deda Zero100 Bar/stem
Saddle: Fi’z:k Arione CX
Bartape: Arundel Gecko Black
Artisan Cycles – 123 Victoria Avenue, Albert Park, 3206, VICTORIA AUSTRALIA
03 9078 4753 / email@example.com