May 7, 2015

Dr. Supertherm or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

Warning: geekery. Extra warning: framebuilding content.

Supertherm is the bomb. I talk to framebuilders all the time who are trying to find a tube to do something weird, or a tube for a big strong rider, or whatever. They all seem shocked when I suggest True Temper’s Supertherm line.

“Isn’t that for BMX?”

Isn’t that for BMX?

Well, yes. But thanks to the fact that what consitutes a BMX varies wildly, and that it’s not very expensive to make a tube 200mm longer, Supertherm tubes are avaiable in lengths up to 750mm – which means they’ll work for all sorts of mountain bike projects, thanks to their long, long butts.

Other great stuff about Supertherm:
-They’re OX Platinum. But thicker. You could use the BMXSTDT06 as a softball bat, I think. You’d probably break both your wrists, but the tube would be ok.
-Thanks to the 1/.7/1mm butting, the they’re stronger AND lighter than using .035″ straightgauge.

That’s a lot of standover.

-You can weld shock mounts, pivots, and other fun things to them for FS bikes without lots of extra work to make sleeves or gussets (with some exceptions).
-You can make very small frames with them – need a really short toptube? Put the 1mm end at the head tube and the .7 at the seat tube end. Want to run a dropper but don’t want a tank of a seat tube? Put the 1mm end at the BB shell and fuse a Solid Bikes 30.9 topper plug into the .7mm.
-You can bend them in a roller, albeit with considerable effort – do curvy tubes to your heart’s content.
-Of course, if you want to make a BMX, they’re great for that too!

That means if you need to build a super-V style full suspension bike (or fatbike) for someone who is under 5 feet tall, you’re good. If I ever get word that TT is going to discontinue it, I’m buying it all.

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