KVA Stainless' custom-made butted stainless steel bicycle tubing will be used on a number of custom-built bikes at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show, to be staged in Austin, Texas, February 25-27th.
Branded as MS2, the tubing is made in the United States.
The tubing is an air-hardenable, martensitic stainless steel with a tensile strength in excess of 200 ksi (1400 Mpa) which means it's twice as strong as titanium with a frame weight comparable to high-end aluminium.
Douglas Gore, vice-president of sales and business development at KVA Stainless, said: "Bike builders have been very generous with their ideas and thoughts, as well as extremely supportive. Cyclists should expect excellent ride characteristics, outstanding durability, and toughness from our new MS2 bicycle tubing. And on the style side, stainless steel offers the timeless beauty and unmatched craftsmanship of an unpainted frame.
"Pre-1975, bicycles were built with steel frames, plated steel spokes and chromed steel rims. When stainless steel spokes arrived everybody celebrated and immediately switched over. Stainless steel as a frame tubing material has held much promise, but until now has been seen as too expensive, too difficult to work with, or both. KVA Stainless solves these problems."
Paul Taylor, of Taylor Bicycles, said: "KVA Stainless is willing to listen to the frame builders and what they have to say, and takes their input seriously. The quality of the KVA tubing is excellent."
Mark Nobilette, of Nobilette Cycles, said: "KVA has finally made the stainless tube set that frame builders want."
Over the last three years, KVA's production manager, Joe McCrink and director of engineering, Danny Codd, have manufactured and tested numerous road bike frames using MS2 tubing.
McCrink said, "We are aware of a growing interest in stainless steel frames; riders reportedly like the look and feel of stainless steel."