To say the market for aluminum track frames has gotten crowded recently is a major understatement. The popularity of aero track frames has surged the last few years and because of that a lot of companies are hopping on the bandwagon. Whether it's because the original fixie rider has matured a bit and is looking for his next fix, the growing popularity of fixed gear crit races like the Red Hook Crit or simply because people like the look of the over sized and sometimes hydro-formed tubing, aluminum fixed gear frames have really taken off.
Similar to the market for fixed gear bikes, what started off as a few companies competing for people's attention has exploded into a super crowded market that is getting filled with low cost and sometimes low quality aluminum framesets coming out of a handful of factories in China. Originally dominated by the likes of Leader Bikes, Cinelli and a few boutique companies like Low (made in USA and Fyxation approved!) and Affinity Cycles, there are now a ton of new comers to the aero track frame scene.
Pure Fix and State Bicycle Co just recently launched their own aluminum track frames and I'm sure their good buddies at Retrospec and Big Shot aren't far behind. Other players in this now crowded market include South Korean based company Unknown Bikes, the Chinese based Aventon and a few others like Throne Bikes and Aerofix.
With all this competition and a direct link to super cheap manufacturing in China, the price point for these frames continues to drop. The State Bicycle Company Black Label series stands out a bit from the crowd because it's not being sold strictly based on it's price, but other than that it has definitely become another race to the bottom. What's interesting to note is that some of these companies like Aventon, are actually the factory as well so if it truly comes down to a price war, they will win.
Here at Fyxation we personally prefer riding and building steel bikes but that's a topic for another blog post. Either way, before you invest in an aluminum track frame make sure you do plenty of research about the quality of the frame you're buying and also about the ride characteristics of using an aluminum track bike on the streets.
For your viewing pleasure I've combed through a few websites of the players in this latest fixie craze and the pics are posted below. Enjoy the gallery!
February 20th - Article update: Please note that we are not calling out any specific companies for being low quality or making a sub-par product. We have a blog and occasionally we use it to write about the industry as we see it. Nothing wrong with affordable. Just do your research before buying your next ... Here's an earlier blog post we did about our specific experience with Chinese manufacturing if you're interested!
Aerofix Bicycles Aero S7 Track Frame
Aventon Bikes Mataro Low
Throne Track Lord
Pure Fix Keirin Pro Track Frame
State Bicycle Black Label