This is the latest build from the shop. The goal was to make a sub 15lbs bike for under $1000
Parts / frame used in the build:
Here’s what I learned:

1. Ultralight is not going to be a production model – You have to find old team bikes, they come with a different carbon lay, usually a toray 1200 or 1800 weave, not the production models that use a toray 600 or 800. This is important in that it makes the tea, bikes stiffer and lighter bit the carbon is more brittle and not designer for 10 years of riding. So this is a trade off you will need to decide. If you don’t believe me, call Diamondback and ask them if you can buy and actual team bike. The frames are different. With the build in the video I went with the Kelly Benefits version of the frame because I was able to find it on eBay and has a super light lay-up.

2. Merlin is basically employee pricing on Shimano. I work one day a week at a bike shop and Merlin’s prices are within 10% of the shop deals. To the point where employees including myself at (Undisclosed national bike shop that owns Bike Nashbar) usually order from Merlin because they have better deals and less of a hassle.

3. Carbon isn’t always the lightest. Check out Woodman Components. For the price and weight their stuff is hard to beat.

4. Take offs will make any budget go further – Hang around local shops, you’d will be surprised what people will take off their bikes to save grams. What comes off, you usually can buy (no warranty) for pennies on the dollar. Hence where I got the bars and seat post in the build.

5. Work arounds – Sometimes its worth buying a bike you don’t want just for the parts. The Mavic wheels in the build came from purchasing Stevens that went straight to eBay without wheels. I think I paid around $1200 on Craigslist and sold the bike without wheels for around $1000. Hence the wheels cost $200ish

6. If you want to spend more time riding than building, just go to shop and pick up a decent road bike for $1500 (I can suggest some bikes if you need help). It’s not easy to build-up ultralight bike, understand they take time. Also invest in a scale haha.

40 COMMENTS

  1. 15.8lbs is not 15lbs….  and the addition of pedals (and I have yet to be able to ride a bike without pedals)  will add about0.50lb…  so you built a 16.3lb bike, not a "15lb bike".

  2. The only problem is that unless you know what you are looking for, you could have a lot of really good, shitty parts. The average cyclist is probably not going to know how to look for a cracked frame, or any cracked carbon part. The bearing ports could be ruined. This is the problem with buying used, is that unless you can 100% know that everything is safe, 200 miles later and you could be in the hospital from a cracked frame or seized hubs. At least a new bike from the bike shop is going to be held to a standard. Go for gold if you want to source all those parts, but with all the time you're going to spend, you're better off picking up a part time job and earning another $1000 to just get a full carbon lightweight bike.

  3. Wheels, frame, and groupset come to $935. So $65 got you handlebars, stem, bar tape, seat post, saddle, tires, tubes, pedals, and bottle cages? Please tell me where you shop.

  4. I have build Felt F1 SL roadbike on 7.5kg (size 58cm). Parts are Sram force groupset (2013) Fulcrum F3 wheelset with conti grandprix tyres, saddle is fizik arione (240g) seatpost is ritchey wcs carbon, stem and handlebar are Aluminuim PRO sl, peals are look with Titanium axle 240g pair. There is still plenty room to go down with weight for low amount of money, for now it has costed me about 1000 euros

  5. Why bother going through so much trouble and risks (assembly, compatibility between new and second-hand parts, tools to assemble it, and so on) unless your passion is building bikes, not riding bikes?!

    Unless you really plan on racing on that bike the difference from 15.8 LBS / 6.95 Kg and 17.86 LBS / 8.1 Kg, that would be my current bike, is not going to be that important. And if I were planning to race on a bike I don't think I would rely on a second-hand bike made from parts.

    I got my Canyon Endurace Al 6.0 with full Shimano 105 5800, Mavic Aksium wheels, and Continental GP4000SII tires for 1000Euros in march 2016.

    Canyon Endurace Al 6.0 – 8.1Kg – 1.099,00 €
    https://www.canyon.com/en-ro/road/endurace/2016/endurace-al-6-0.html

    ROSE PRO SL-2000 – 7,95 kg – 1.099,00 €
    https://www.rosebikes.ro/bike/rose-pro-sl-2000-bike-now-821326/aid:821333

  6. hey I have an even better budget build idea: get a carbon frame with dura ace groupset for free from a friend and take the rest of the parts from your old high end road bikes. what a concept right?

  7. Everyone is busting their shoes to trim weight off of their bike, when it is far easier to trim a few #'s off of your lardy ass. Dang.

  8. 15.8 lbs without pedals? Is anybody going to ride it without pedals? Oh and I found some used parts too. Hey look how many people I got to click on my post.

  9. Loved this video. Would you ever consider doing a video showing the complete build? Also I would really be interested in your list of $1500 bikes as I may not have the skill set to complete this build. Thanks.

  10. So let me get this straight, you'd have to find a seat that weighs negative 163g in order to get it below 15 lbs? That makes no sense.

  11. that frame for $450? You'd have to put in a lot of time searching for it. Bid $450 on every such frame you can find on ebay I guess? And that Ksyrium SL wheelsset? I don't think this build is replicable anywhere near $1000.

  12. i started to watch, but when he used "pro level" and "105" in the same sentence it was like huffing a fart. then he said 105 works as good as dura ace and dude, i gotta a bike w/8 yo DA mech that feels so much better than my rs505 105 spanking new. he talks of "weight limit" as if its an upper limit, no its a minimum. maybe dude is just trying to be on youtube, i dunno.

  13. Frame, fork, components – $1000. Shipping for all the components and frame? 1 month time to source everything. Are the parts new? used? labor to assemble? Tools required to assemble? Buying Shimano overseas is the reason Independent Bike Shops are closing and something Shimano is trying to put the end to.

  14. I ride a 22 year old 21 pound Italian lugged steel bike and I can beat local guys on their $8000 featherlight bikes. 🙂

  15. 15.8ibs without peddles for around $1200 , am i missing something here!? the title says 15lbs for under $1000, really it should of been under 16lbs for over a $1000

  16. Got me a bmc rm01with sram red and carbon parts at 15.4 pounds for $1200 . Will never buy brand new ,yull be surprised what you can find with a lil patience and luck

  17. My bike is 15.1 lbs and cost $1800. It is a Jamis Icon frameset with SRAM force1 and SRAM XX drivetrain, dura ace wheels, and deda cockpit. If there is interest I will make a video on it.

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