I'm trying to find out some more information on the Titanium frames produced by Raleigh in the 90's.
As far as I can tell there were three distinct types:
1) Raleigh Dynatech where titanium tubes where bonded into to lugs and mixed with other frame materials.
2) Welded titanium frames made with Timet branded tubing.
3) Welded titanium frames made with IMI branded tubing.
I have a road frame which falls into this third category and I'd really like to know more about where they were made and what sort of tubing was used.
As far as I can tell the Timet branded tubing was some sort of commercially pure titanium approximately equivalent to US grade 4. The tubing was cheap but is nothing like as strong as the more commonly used 3AL2.5V or 6AL4V alloys used on high spec US built frames. It seems these frames were prone to cracking.
Many people believe the IMI tubing was far superior. As far as I can tell the IMI tubing was manufactured in either Birmingham (or possibly Swansea) and the tube forms were specifically designed for the frames rather than being taken from 'off the peg' tube stock.
I think the main triangles on both the Timet and IMI frames were robot welded with the rear triangle being finished by hand.
Can anyone shed more light on these interesting frames?
The final incarnation (ca.1999) of the RSP titanium series was the R800 which had a red & white paint job; previous welded Ti Raleighs tended to come in "natural" finish. I think the R800 had IMI tubing made in Witton, Birmingham, although the issue is clouded somewhat because Timet and IMI's titanium division merged in 1996.
IMI and Timet models used round tube profiles, but there were also welded titanium Raleighs offered in the late 90s/early 2000s from a few retailers (e.g. Sheffield Cycles of Burton, Allens of Wombwell) with good connections to Triumph Road, and these used unbranded material and a seriously oversized teardrop down tube; the "finish" on these bare metal frames was a dull silver/grey.
 Coincidentally, the same part of Brum where Speedwells were built!
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