When we took stock of the new PBK TITANIUM frame, we knew we had found a lightweight racing bike that would offer awesome handling and value for money. We then sent a full build to the good people at Cycling Plus magazine for their bike of the year review and this is what they had to say about it.
PBK’s TITANIUM BIKE is supplied by the online retailer ProBikeKit as a frameset with Ritchey WCS full carbon fork, or as a frame only. The frameset costs £1000 (or with present discount £900) with the frame only coming in at £799 (£719 with a discount). Ours was supplied by PBK with kit that it supplies, based around SRAM’s second string Force groupset and Fulcrum’s excellent Racing 3 wheels.
At just 7.64kg the PBK was one of the lightest bikes on test. Everybody agreed that it was nicely finished too, with just a minimal touch of PBK branding on an otherwise naked titanium frame. In spite of titanium’s reputation for offering comfort over performance, all our testers felt that the PBK was more a machine for the competitive rider rather than the casual cyclist. “Strictly for racing, very fast, very stiff out of the blocks, with an aggressive position and nippy handling,” said resident racer Jeff Jones.
Other racers in the test team also appreciated the stiff, racy frame and the excellent Ritchey fork. Specced with Fulcrum Racing 3 wheels, the PBK was described by one tester as a “very raceable bike, one that induces pedal-mashing excitement”. Of our team of testers only our workshop manager George Ramelkamp – generally a fan of all things titanium – was less than totally impressed by this bike, having issues with heel clearance on the rear triangle.
The 27.2mm seatpost helps to take the sting out of road buzz, but even this bike’s fans reckoned that the ride is on the firm side, Jeff suggesting that it wouldn’t look after you on a long ride. Overall this is a good looking bike that shows titanium still has a place as a racing bike. The weight is comparable with carbon fibre and the ride is just as fast, but titanium has the advantage of longevity too. Theoretically and barring a catastrophic crash, a titanium frame should last you indefinitely.
(Cycling Plus Bike Of The Year Review – April 2010)
Good value and very racy Titanium frame