Anybody ride a Della Santa?
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  1. #1
    I've got to get in shape.
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    Anybody ride a Della Santa?

    I was thinking buying a new Look KG481 SL, but my heart is telling me to ditch the idea and to go with a custom Della Santa.

    I've read/heard all about the relationship with LeMond, and I've heard that they are really nice frames, but I've never heard directly from someone who actually rides one.

    I'm sure that any custom frame would be fantastic. But are Della Santa's that much more fantastic? If you ride one, what's it like? What was the process like? How long did you wait? Is it truly worth it (I already own a really nice steel Scapin)?

    Thank you for your input.

  2. #2

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    I can't directly reply but I can tell you, from having had the experience of going through the process of ordering a full-custom bike two times. The process of getting something custom adds such an intangible element to your bike that it's not a simple answer to make. Full custom for me meant getting my geometry set precisely for my body shape. The second time was even more interesting since I knew what I like and didn't like about my first custom bike. On top of that I decided I wanted a practical commuter bike the second time around. I knew I wanted more trail on my second bike; although I got used to the fast-steering characteristic of my first bike, I wanted a bike that didn't force me to put as much effort into control.

    I'm typing this a short while after getting home from a nice 22 mile ride. The ride back was into a headwind which gave me a workout. I've only got a bit over 200 miles on my new bike, so far. I do now have a thorough understanding of the handling characteristics of my new bike compared to my old bike.

  3. #3
    Cipo's long lost cousin
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    A little feedback

    I live in Reno and Roland Della Santa did some work for me a while back on a frame I was fixing up. He was a great guy to work with and simply talk about cycling stuff. I've seen his work close up and would put it up there with Sachs or any of the other framebuilders on the market right now. Roland's probably forgotten more about cycling history then I'll ever know. With that said here are some thoughts:

    - Most of the Della Santa's I've seen are pretty traditional. If you are looking for Vanilla type details (ornate drop outs, raised metal logos, etc.) or a full on tour frame then I'd look elsewhere. Roland seems to focus on purposeful lugged steel race bikes.

    - In my conversations with Roland he was only turning out around 30 frames per year. This gives his frames a little more exclusiveness then some builders. He's a one man show...

    - Ask about the option for a Silca frame pump painted to match the frame. You can see examples on his website. IMHO its a pretty cool option!
    "Cycling is like a church - many attend, but few understand." -- Jim Burlant

  4. #4

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    Yes! Yes! Yes!

    Dude,
    I bought a DS a couple of years ago and it is absolutely AWESOME! A little background. I've been cycling for 20+ years now and have had the following frames--Bianchi SLX, Tommasini Tecno genius, Strong Foco, Pegoretti Fina Estampa and Della Santa Corsa Speciale w/ Dedacciai Zero f/f. The DS has proven to be my favorite. The more I ride it the more I love it. Working w/ Roland was a great experience. He loves to talk cycling and he really expects you to know what you want. His price is very reasonable and the wait is only a few months. Don't wait on choosing a color like I did as he does not start building until you give him a color. Also, Reno gets hot in the summer so don't wait until July to order or you won't get it until November. Check out pix on his website at www.dellasanta.com.

    You will not be disappointed at all w/ the experience or the frameset.

  5. #5
    Coco Puff
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    I ride a '97 DS. It's a nice riding frame and Roland is great guy.

    I ride a standard size frame, so it wasn't built to my spec, but it fits me like a glove. As for the ride, it's quite responsive and yet still very comfortable. The lugwork is perfect and the finish quality is tops.

    In short- I think you can't go wrong and I highly recommend Della Santa

  6. #6
    Cipo's long lost cousin
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    Foggypeake... Check your PM

    Check your Private messages
    "Cycling is like a church - many attend, but few understand." -- Jim Burlant

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigDaddySmooth
    Dude,
    I bought a DS a couple of years ago and it is absolutely AWESOME! A little background. I've been cycling for 20+ years now and have had the following frames--Bianchi SLX, Tommasini Tecno genius, Strong Foco, Pegoretti Fina Estampa and Della Santa Corsa Speciale w/ Dedacciai Zero f/f. The DS has proven to be my favorite. The more I ride it the more I love it. Working w/ Roland was a great experience. He loves to talk cycling and he really expects you to know what you want. His price is very reasonable and the wait is only a few months. Don't wait on choosing a color like I did as he does not start building until you give him a color. Also, Reno gets hot in the summer so don't wait until July to order or you won't get it until November. Check out pix on his website at www.dellasanta.com.

    You will not be disappointed at all w/ the experience or the frameset.
    Could you elaborate on why the Della Santa is your favorite. I was looking into getting another steel frame and you own some of the frames I was thinking about. Does the Della Santa fit better that the others, or ride smoother, or handle better? Is it lighter? Also what ball park is the price in?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fivethumbs
    Could you elaborate on why the Della Santa is your favorite. I was looking into getting another steel frame and you own some of the frames I was thinking about. Does the Della Santa fit better that the others, or ride smoother, or handle better? Is it lighter? Also what ball park is the price in?
    The Pegoretti and DS are exact...I had Roland build to match the Pegoretti 54. The Strong was a little too long in the TT for my preference. The "Tom" was a good ride but the rear triangle was a bit off...maybe the welder had one too many Espressos. Anyway, the DS just has it...it is hard to explain. It is as stiff as the Peg but I try to ride rough stuff on the DS where I would avoid the same with the Peg. The handling is supreme, as is the Peg but I think the ultimate difference is the DS feels "alive"...maybe because the Peg is AL. I would recommend the Peg and the Strong but you are going to pay over $2K for a Peg (Toms are well over 2K now too). Personally, I think you would be hard-pressed to beat either DS or Strong when you factor in the variables of 1) cost, 2) availability, 3) craftmanship and 4) reputation.

    As far as weight goes...Roland humored me and weighed it...3.5 for frame and 1.4 for fork. With Record 10 and nothing foolishly light, it built up to 18.25#. Not too bad for lugged steel, my man! The Peg w/ Chorus-9 is 0.5# lighter. I can't tell the difference when riding.

    I believe Roland is charging $1500ish for f/f. Wait should be <3 months. The wait I think is more for his painter than it is for him...just don't wait until July.

    Good luck

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Thanks for the info. $1500.00 for a nice lugged frame and fork is pretty reasonable. I guess I'll be writing a letter.

  10. #10
    Coco Puff
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fivethumbs
    Thanks for the info. $1500.00 for a nice lugged frame and fork is pretty reasonable. I guess I'll be writing a letter.
    or you can give Roland a call @ 775 322 2305. He's quite fun to talk with.

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