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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:41 am 
The Guv'nor
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http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Retro-1996-Pa ... 0983812661

Sellers pins quite a tale, not heard of this before. Looks a bit like a Merlin Lobster but who knows???


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:48 am 
BoTY & PoTM Winner
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haven't rerad the sellers description.

Basically when Merlin mail order did the deal with Sadoff for the Name, it kinda left N.T.I left in limbo a little, the remaining Far east Rock lobsters (sadoff era, not Merlin) were re-branded Amazon. Again these Frames were only available in the blue and the green.

As I understand it, From this point on Sadoff had little to do with the UK brand at all, apart from the usual marketing BS that was part of the Agreement.

BS Still remains to baffle brains of course.... :facepalm:


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:51 am 
The Guv'nor
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Ahh, that would explain it.

Assume from what you're saying NTI did taiwan made lobster's prior to Merlin? Interesting!


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:24 am 
BoTY & PoTM Winner
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John wrote:
Ahh, that would explain it.

Assume from what you're saying NTI did taiwan made lobster's prior to Merlin? Interesting!



Paul like many needed/wanted to fill the gap at a price point and the far east was the option, he was solely responsible for the frames, and N.T.I were simply the Uk importer/distributor for them, unlike the Merlin/lobsters, Merlin licensed the name and apart from the marketing BS, Sadoff had next to nothing to do with it, and went back to concentrating solely on Handbuilt frames and designs.

I think it suited at the time, but im told a sore point in the end.

The seller was spot on with his detail though, and to be fair, given so many similarities/design details to other santa Cruz frames (Bontrager) who he also welded for, and even with it being a Far east version of his early works, its a tidy frame for £70 IMHO, they ride well.

8)


Last edited by sinnerman on Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:35 am 
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With so much knowledge in the room can I ask a cheeky question? I have a 97/8 Merlin (UK) with a tange prestige frame. Not much info on them. I'm wondering how that fits into the picture given Merlin had the RL name by then?
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=274382


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:55 am 
The Guv'nor
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Cheers Carl.

Looks like we have a review of this frame in the archive > http://www.retrobike.co.uk/gallery2/v/M ... eviews/RL/


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:32 pm 
BoTY & PoTM Winner
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John wrote:
Cheers Carl.

Looks like we have a review of this frame in the archive > http://www.retrobike.co.uk/gallery2/v/M ... eviews/RL/



No Probs, it is a very underated frame imho. Interesting reading that, as it gives Bill a lot of credit for its design, and yet no mention of what was being done on home soil. (Or Paul using the left over part assembled frames and tubesets etc which became "Nontragers". I suspect none of this was relevant for the job at hand though, and the Nontrager part of the story may actually have happened afterward.... :?..?)

They were certainly a Godsend for me at the time, Bontragers were becoming impossible to buy for waiting customers, and whilst this was a less expensive option, it certainly filled a void.

I have to confess I never gave Bill credit for that level of involvement when perhaps I should have..? that reads like it was his idea. Regardless I was gutted when Merlin jumped in, IDs lost another tidy option for a quality steel frame.

Whilst it was becoming a niche market, it was still a market that I cant say was filled properly until seeing the resurgence thanks to the likes of Cotic et all.


Last edited by sinnerman on Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:53 pm 
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Looks like a Fuquay armadillo on there as well for some reason.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:57 pm 
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Why don't you ask "taffy" that looks like his frame from a post in the for sale section.


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