After 15 years designing all manner of bikes for Kinesis, Dom Mason is heading out on his own adventure and launching Mason Progressive Cycles.

Born the in UK, the bikes will be made near Venice, Italy, by handpicked welders with experience in the individual metals each frame uses. Yes, that means the Dedacciai alloy Definition model will be made in one factory while the Columbus Spirit/Life steel Resolution will come from another. The frames will share the same spirit, though, being made to tackle any type of road you take it down. They’ll also share some rather nifty design features that make everything from assembly to riding them just a bit more pleasurable…

Mason Progressive Cycles founder Dom Mason leaves Kinesis to launch his own brand

Here’s a nice bit of background Dom emailed us:

I spent 15 years designing and developing the Kinesis UK brand, I was very proud that it achieved many award winning and ‘best of test’ bikes and frames and eventually won the BikeBiz ‘Bike Brand of The Year 2013’. This turned out to be a pivotal moment for me and almost on that same evening I decided I wanted to start my own brand. I resigned from running Kinesis UK in Sept ’14 and have been working on the M∆SON brand ever since.

This brand has taken me into different territory and I’ve really enjoyed working with the small Italian makers after 15 years of dealing with the far East. I’m a trained engineer and a craftsman at heart and I had a yearning to get back in touch with the making process, talk with the builders and tube producers and hand pick the perfect custom tubesets for my frame designs.

The first two frames are made by small makers in the Venice region, I picked the best makers for steel and alloy rather than trying to find one maker for both. I’m a bit fanatical about detailing and finish, so I also spent a lot of time tracking down the best Italian paint and decal makers. The finish on the final production sample frames is incredible, far superior in look and durability to anything I have produced before.

I also visited the tubing factories and spent hours talking to the engineers before coming away with some beautiful tubesets that I knew were just perfect for my requirements. A great moment was driving away from the Columbus tube facility in Milan, heading for Venice with my first tubeset in the Fiat 500 hire car!

Mason Cycles Resolution Columbus steel disc brake road bike frame

The steel Resolution bike doesn’t look like most steel bikes. The heavily formed box section downtube gives it a much more modern look and should make for a very interesting ride mix of stiff and lively. Dom developed the “MultiPort” cable stop design in conjunction with the steel frame makers, allowing for easy swaps between mechanical and electronic drivetrains. It’ll even let you choose between running full length cable housing or putting cable stops at each port. Unique in itself, it’s also pretty rare to see such a versatile design on a steel frame.

Mason Cycles Resolution Columbus steel disc brake road bike frame

The fork is their own 365g carbon monocoque tapered design with internal hose/cable routing to the front disc brake. Both bikes are disc brake only, and both will share the same fork and MultiPorts.

Mason Cycles Resolution Columbus steel disc brake road bike frame

Both will also use a standard threaded BSA bottom bracket shell. What’s unique about the design is that both models use a tapered seat tube design that’s flared out at the bottom to provide a larger welding surface area (stiffer BB junction) while spec’ing a narrow 27.2 seatpost. The result is a more compliant ride thanks to the thinner seatpost without sacrificing pedaling performance.

Mason Cycles Resolution Columbus steel disc brake road bike frame

Both frames have their rear brakes mounted inside the triangle, but use different mounts. The Resolution uses a replaceable insert to thread the caliper into…

Mason Cycles Definition Dedacciai alloy disc brake road bike frame

…while the Definition uses thinner, sleeker direct mounts that thread the caliper bolts directly into the frame.

Mason Cycles Definition Dedacciai alloy disc brake road bike frame

The alloy Definition’s BB shell is even larger to accommodate the oversized downtube, reducing down to fit the standard threaded BB.

Both bikes will clear 28c tires with a fender, both are to be painted in Italy, and both come in two colors (the black or blue shown here). The first batch is in production now (January), then head to paint in February and start shipping in early March. Yes, they’re being a bit coy with full bike shots, but you can catch a few glimpses on their website en route to pre-ordering.

They’ll be offered as standard in 50, 52, 54, 56, 58 and 60 cm sizes, and 48 and 62 will be available as special pre-order options. Framesets and five complete builds (105/Spyre – 105/Hydro dis – Ultegra/Hydro disc – Ultegra/Hydro/Di2 – DuraAce/Hydro/Di2) will be offered. Pricing is TBD.

And for wheels? Dom worked with fellow UK upstart Hunt Bike Wheels to create the special edition Mason x Hunt wheelset we posted about a few days ago.

MasonCycles.cc

26 COMMENTS

  1. “Both frames have their rear brakes mounted inside the triangle, but use different mouths. The Resolution uses a replaceable insert to thread the caliper into…”

    I’m disappointed the the calipers will be using different mouths. I would have liked to chow down with just a single mouth-to-esophagi interface, now bike stores will have to keep multiple digestive system in stock if they wish to sell these frames.

  2. Steel is an alloy.
    Aluminum is an element, with little use in pure form.
    Aluminum alloys can be used like steel, as a manufacturing material.

  3. I will say that sans my qualms on the use of “alloy” for Al, these bikes look like something that really fits my current needs. In fact all the British style all road bike do

  4. Cheese,

    I’m not quite sure which part of this sentence – early on in the article the bikes will be made near Venice, Italy, by handpicked welders with experience in the individual metals each frame uses” lead you to believe Dom’s frames will be welded in taiwan?

    Please engage your brain before flaming someone in an internet comment section purely for effect. When you act foolishly, people will think you are a fool, and act accordingly.

    Best wishes,

    etc.

    PS, great work Dom, these really do look great.

  5. These look really nice. With current trends, it might be worth leaving clearance for 32c tires with fenders, since 32 seems to be the new 28.

  6. Hi Cheese.

    Unfortunate waste of pixels there.

    Read again. We have the frames built in Italy and painted in Italy.

    If I was to make frames in TW, I would have them painted in TW, they do a great job. Can’t see the point in shipping frames across the world to have them painted in Italy and then shipping them from Italy to the UK though : /

    Dom.

  7. Hi John, thanks for your comment,

    I tooled up for my own carbon fork because I really couldn’t find something off the shelf to match my requirements for these frames. I considered the thru-axle question very carefully as you might appreciate! Here are some reasons why I’ve gone QR for these models;

    – These models will be sold as frameset only [inc h.set/clamp/fork] as well as complete bikes. Wheel choice is still pretty limited and I wanted people to have as much choice as possible when building the bikes.

    – The Mason Aperture fork uses our ‘Securaxl’ system which has a forward facing axle slot and socketed dropouts. Along with the Mason x Hunt wheelset http://bikerumor.com/2015/01/21/hunt-bicycle-wheels-starts-the-chase-w-road-tubeless-from-uk/ , with it’s excellent internal-cam skewers, the wheel is extremely secure!

    – We worked very hard on the shape and layup for the fork. The outcome is a beautiful looking, lightweight and highly functional fork with absolutely no hint of rotor-rub even when out of the saddle on climbs. A thru-axle certainly aids lateral stiffness if it’s lacking structurally in the fork blades, but we were totally happy with the ride qualities and lateral stiffness of the fork.

    – Because of the extra material required for a thru-axle fork it’s inevitable that weight is added, I had a target of 360g and it was hard to achieve that and include thru-axle.

    – Standards have still not settled for axle size, although my split-tooling will allow us to re-tool to accomodate thru-axle when we feel the time is right.

    – For the frames, there is really no need for thru-axle rear wheels IMO. For steel in particular the dropouts will add weight and I am very happy with the performance of the shrouded dropouts with forward facing slots. The ride quality and stiffness of both aluminium and steel proto. frames is just how we like it! When I move to my next frame project, a sporty adventure/long distance bike, I’ll be looking at a new thru-axle fork and possible thru-axle rear.

    Hope this answers some Q’s and apologies for the long winded reply!

    Dom.
    M∆SON Cycles UK.

  8. Hi Tom,

    Thanks, glad you like them : ]

    Yes, larger tyres are much more widely accepted and they have real benefits and hardly any drawbacks for this type of bike. Lots of studies say 28’s run as fast as 25’s if not faster when surfaces deteriorate [our UK roads get pretty rough!].

    Anyway, the Mason frames and fork will take 32’s, but not with fender. To get enough clearance for 32’s and full fenders the crown height would need to be closer to a CX dimension and I didn’t want that for these frames. My next frame project will accomodate larger tyres + full fenders and will use a 397mm crown height to make it all work.

    Hope that helps!

    Dom.
    M∆SON Cycles UK.

  9. Hi TJ,

    We haven’t launched yet, so I haven’t released any full frame or bike pictures.

    I will be shooting the frame sets and complete bikes for the website and press within the next couple of weeks, so I’ll be keeping Tyler updated and hopefully I’ll be able to persuade him to post some images on these pages.

    So keep tuned here and keep checking back here > http://masoncycles.cc/ Also, drop me an e.mail from the holding page and I’ll keep you updated. Sign up for the newsletter too!

    Thanks for your comments and interest.

    Dom.
    M∆SON Cycles UK.

  10. Note: The Definition BB is 50mm and steps down to standard threaded for 2 reasons;
    1. So there is a large weld area for the down tube and 2. To give free space so the internal cables/hose can pass through.

  11. Artisan and expensive. Totally opposite to Kinesis UK. Good to see Dom taking things in a different direction. Talking of directions…Neil at bowman surely took his from dom for the new ally frame those guys just released – it looks just like the Kinesis Aithein. Is there an unofficial tie in?

  12. Dom, great works! Considered a steel or Aithein, looks like I’ll wait for mason frames. Any idea of pricing for framesets? Thanks

  13. Hey ‘For the Fan Bois’, Thanks, glad you are getting the direction of the Mason brand, it really needed to be something totally different to the Kinesis UK brand.

    I think the Bowman lightweight race frame may have taken a bit of inspiration from the Aithein, but that’s the way things progress. No official tie in.

  14. Hi Tomas,

    Sorry for the LATE reply and thanks for your comments! It would be great if you can wait for one of our frames, they are being built right now and will be painted and ready early March.

    Columbus steel frame/Mason carbon monocoque fork/Mason clamp/Deda h.set/Marine grade bolt set and all MultiPort parts will be around £1499. Dedacciai aluminium frame with all above will be around £850.

    Hope this helps.

    Dom.
    M∆SON Cycles UK.

  15. Go on then when are you going to tell us how much these beauties are for a full build, I need to start convincing my beautiful and generous girlfriend that I need one of these. Also what are the weights looking like for the full builds?

  16. Are you taking orders already so I could get a bike in March? If so it would be good to know the prices of the builds and also if we order a frame, will the hunt wheels be ready in march to buy with the frame or be an option with the builds being offered? Thanks

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