Posted by: audaxing | December 24, 2011

It was Dead but….

In August 2010, just after I’d done the Mille Cymru, I discovered a crack in the frame of my prized Setavento Custom Titanium bike. Normally a problem like that would be a warranttee return but Setavento are no longer trading, they are not contactable and as far as I know there is no active waranttee scheme.

The damage looked terminal. I stripped all the Campag parts off the bike, sold them and bought a new bike, a Specialized Roubaix. I asked around if the titanium bike could be repaired. Apparently, the place it fissured near the seatpost/stays/top tube interface is a common place for a crack. One specialist (retired) welder said he’d not seen a crack propergate through the weld in titanium in quite that way before.

I phoned a specialist company who make titanium bikes and asked them about a repair. The first guy I talked to said “oh yes fine no problem”. The second guy said “no way, it’s not a viable repair”

All this was a shame, because it was a great frame. The fit was excellent and titanium as a material gives a good ride.

The bike festered in the back of the garage for over a year. I did PBP on the new carbon bike. Then I heard that some one I knew had had a similar problem and had got it repaired. They’d used a welder and bike fixer from up north. He’d welded up the cracks and put a reinforcing collar around the effect area.

I called him up, sent some emails with photos of the cracks and then the frame. A few weeks later the frame returned.

I’ve rebuilt it with a single front chainring and a wide range MTB cassette at the back. It still rides nicely and I’m looking forward to using it again


  1. Great story, nice to see the frame back in use.
    I also like the single front chainwheel idea. I ride a tripple, and spend 99.73% of my time on the middle ring carrying those other two rings around…

    Merry Christmas,


  2. […] I got a new saddle for the commuter bike. This is because the loverly, old Brooks B17 on it is going to be redeployed onto my born again Ti bike […]

  3. […] recently resurrected my titanium bike. This had donated it’s titanium seatpost to my Specialized Roubaix but now it seemed only […]

  4. Just came across your blog as I’m moving into Audax from a club background (NOT a big fan of sportives!)
    I too have a lovely Ti bike (Seven Axiom) and the guys in the club laugh because I run a 38 chainring and an MTB rear cassette (using Dura-Ace 9-speed!). But really, what else do I need . . . I can certainly cope with the club run.

  5. […] Setavento 9)It was Dead but… These two posts are about my titanium bike, how it broke and how it was eventually […]

  6. […] Setavento and the Karate Monkey are going to keep going in the winter. They only have themselves to blame […]

  7. Who completed the Ti repair for you?

    • Vernon Barker. It was fine for a couple of years and then another crack appeared and it’s now in the back of the garage again.

      • Sorry to hear that! Another crack appeared in the same place as the original?

        Have to say that pic of the repair weld was pretty ugly… I’d really have expected a better, cleaner job than that. Particularly if it hasn’t actually stood the test of time.

      • yes, another crack appeared. If you look up the sort of reasons that cracks happen in welded titanium this is not particularly surprising

        The ugly weld did stand the test of time – the new fault was near it but the original repair didn’t fail – the bike frame got another crack

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