I sold my previous frame and I’m now in the market for something new for next season. I decided to dig around a bit to find out what my options are. Generally what I call first generation models (with external cabling, no aero forming) are available for $200 cheaper than the new ones. My hunch is next year many of these first generation frames will be phased out altogether as current high-end models will be replaced by Di2 compatible models.
Anyways here is what is available today:
- FM001 is the first generation frame external cabling model from HongFu. It has been called the Kuota Kredo clone and my understanding is that this was the first big hit for chinese carbon bikes.
- FM015 from HongFu has that classical road-bike beauty. The main recognizable feature is the very thin rear stays that absorb bumps on the road magnificently. The rear cable is internally routed. Some say that it has the Trek MadOne geometry and thus is the raciest of the currently available models.
- FM028 from DengFu is very similar to FM015. The main difference is that the rear stays are wider near the rear fork. Some say it resembles the Trek H2.
- FM039 is one of the first aerodynamic models with . It is said to be inspired by Specialized Venge. It has the same wish bone rear stays, but I fail to see the beauty of it. There is internal cabling also for derailleurs. A special seat post is required.
- RFM201 from GreatKeen is the real chinarello ie. Pinarello Dogma copy with the snake chain stays and fork. I have never really liked the look of it. Seems little pretentious to me and people sticking Pinarello decals on these are just lame.
- R838 from Carbonzone seems very similar to FM015, but rear stays enlarge going up unlike FM028 with tapered up top. This could be a little beefier construction, but I doubt it really makes any difference. The chain stays just seem odd this way and break the clean looks of the bike.
Right now I think I will end up going with FM015, but I wish a new model would be published with exact same geometry and looks, but would have internal derailleur cabling. I have some time still before summer and there are bunch of other options I haven’t had time to study in more detail yet.
- FM307 GoToBike
- FM339 BB30 ugly front
- FM757 di2? rear stays similar to FM015
- RFM101 snake great Keen
- RFM201 snake, real chinarello
- RFM106 aerp
- RFM102 internal cables
- RFM203 Cervelo S3 copy
- Cycling Yong R1
- R2 wish bone
- R3 aero, but round seat tube
- pedal force cg2