Just about every bike we’ve seen from Paul Budnitz over the years has featured an expertly crafted,
US-made titanium frame with swoopy lines. But that kind of thing doesn’t come cheap. So Budnitz boiled it down to the essentials for the more attainable Alpha. Swooping cantilever tubes, disc brakes, belt-drive, now with a light aluminum frame and stock build kit and a much more affordable pricetag….
Budnitz Alpha preconfigured aluminum everyday bike
While Budnitz’s titanium city bikes are all made to order, beautifully crafted & ooze quality, with pricing starting at about $5500 they are simply out of reach of most cyclists. Paul brought the cost of entry down with a steel version several years ago, but with a lot of customization, that bike still wasn’t cheap. Now the new aluminum Alpha brings a Budnitz bike more within reach thanks to stock geometry, a single paint color, and a standard complete bike spec based on creating a light, quick, and long-lasting city bike.
The ‘FlyLite’ aluminum frame is the core of the affordable, ready-made build of the new Alpha. It uses an alloy tubeset, custom extruded & hydroformed for Budnitz with 3D machined dropouts to create a lightweight, quick bike that retains his distinct styling. Of course a lot of that comes down to the double, curved toptubes that arc into seatstays for a more forgiving ride, even in aluminum. But it’s also the use of an internally geared hub, spun by a belt-drive and combined with a flat bar setup.
Keeping things simple is how costs are kept in check. While Budnitz’s other bikes are a custom configuration free for all, the Alpha is 100% pre-configured. Available in any color you want, as long as it is (matte) black! The bike is available in three stock sizes (S, M & L) with quick city riding geometry based on the ti Model Three.
The frame features semi-internal cable routing in the downtube & fork, full coverage fender mounts front & rear, and braze-ons for a rear rack. Of course it is also belt-drive friendly with a split driveside seatstay & sliding closed dropouts (for the bolt-on rear wheel), and it is fitted with post mount disc brakes.
Complete bike build spec
The bike build doesn’t skimp though. Budnitz says he actually put together a complete bike spec from the most commonly requested options from his custom bike configuration tool.
The Alpha gets a full carbon thru-axle, flat mount disc fork, a Shimano Alfine 8-speed internally geared hub, a Gates Carbon Drive belt, and Tektro hydraulic disc brakes. Cockpit & finishing components are for the most part no-name kit, but it all seems to be pretty standard house brand quality, light alloy fare.
Put simply, for $1490 you get a lot of value out of the alloy Alpha. It shares the performance and quality aspects of Budnitz’s more by sticking with a tried-and-true pre-configured build.
The Alpha is available now for pre-order from Budnitz, with global delivery of the first bikes slated for April 2018. Quantities in that first batch are limited, so order soon or feel free to hit up Gregg at Budnitz directly via Facebook to confirm individual delivery timeline estimates.