Kona Titanium Serial Number List - update June-22

al-onestare

BoTM Winner
Kona Fan
Update June-22

Pip is currently enjoying the great universal single-track. He had a great send-off which you can read about here: https://www.retrobike.co.uk/threads/phillip-pipmeister-mock-kona-guru-and-legend.443234/

His friendship is the greatest legacy he leaves us with but we must not forget the incredible resources and knowledge that he documented locally and shared here on retrobike, not least the Kona serial numbers and related information.

From today, I will administer the work he started. My current plan is to spend an hour a week updating the lists with any new entries or confirmed related data / information. The same criteria applies as before, so if you'd like to have your titanium Kona added to the list, please follow these steps before PMing with your details or questions:

1. Must be a titanium Kona Hei Hei, Hei Hei King Kahuna, Una, Score or Haole
2. Have an eligible serial number, found on the bottom of the bottom bracket
3. Provide photographic evidence, preferably as the current owner
4. Check the bike and serial number isn't already on the current list (note if the record was unconfirmed previously, new details are welcome)


Big thanks to John for helping configure this and as ever - a huge thank you - to all current and past Kona-heads including Pip. Without our collective knowledge, none of this would be possible πŸ₯°

To make finding the lists and associated data a little easier, this first post will contain the master data.

Kona Hot: https://www.retrobike.co.uk/threads/kona-hot-serial-number-list-update-june-22.446740/
Kona Caldera: https://www.retrobike.co.uk/threads/kona-caldera-serial-number-list-update-june-2022.446749/
Kona Ku: https://www.retrobike.co.uk/threads/kona-ku-serial-number-list-update-june-2022.446754/

So without further ado...

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers.

Red - confirmed with picture, Blue - good source, but TBC, Black - only quoting from forum post or advert.

Hei Hei Frame Numbers 1990 - 1999:

1990:

The frames were welded at Merlin Metalworks Inc., but the Geometry was designed by Joe Murray and bikes were sold by The Bicycle Group. Listed as Kona Titanium in the 1990 Catalogue.

1345 - Built in January 1990.
1495 – c/w Merlin Head Tube, Down Tube and Seat Tube Decal with Titanium Top Tube Decal and Geometry by Joe Murray Decal on Chain Stay. Kona Top Tube and TBG Seat Tube Decal missing.

From 1991 to 2000, frames were welded by Titanium Sports Technologies (TST or Ti Sports) in Kennewick, Washington State. Historically, there has been much discussion regarding how the sequential serial numbers were issued over the different Kona sizes, or indeed other Manufactures. To date, I have one β€œB” prefix serial number repeated over two different sizes (i.e. serial number 14 used on a size 17” and a size 19” frame. Then one β€œB” prefix number repeated over the same size 18” frame (i.e., two 1995 frames with an identical serial number!), and nine post β€œB” prefix serial numbers that are repeated across different frame sizes or models:

1991:
B17001- Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing.
B17006 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, original Decals.
B17009 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B17010 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing, mix of ’97 / ’98 replica Decals.
Assured by e-Bay seller that the Serial Number is correct - they have previously posted twice on RB back in 2014.
B17014 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B17021 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing, Blue solid Kona Decal. Verbal from former RB member.
B19005 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing, Disc Tab, No decals.
B19010 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing, Oval β€˜K’ Kona Headtube Decal.
B19013 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, from archived e-Bay listing.
B19014 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, Oval β€˜K’ Kona Headtube decal – c/w original invoice.
B19037 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing.
B19065 - Verbal via Anthony from e-Bay listing.
B19081 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube Extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, Replica 1991 Decals.
B20031 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B20054 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B21022 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete original Down Tube and Joe Murray Decal – c/w original Invoice.

1992:
B17320 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B17329 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension,Rear Brake Noodle missing, c/w 1994 Decals.
B19281 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing.
B19294 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, Headtube Decal only.
B19342 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube, Rear Brake Noodle missing, Oval β€˜K’ Kona Headtube Decal.
B19463 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete.
B19484 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete – bought new in May ’92.
B19493 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle complete, no Decals.
B20367 - Verbal from Anthony’s records.
B20370 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing.
B20372 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube, Rear Brake Noodle complete, no Decals.
B20374 - Pre-Bullet, Canti Bridge, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle refurbished.
B20433 - Pre-Bullet, no Canti Bridge - seller says removed :eek:, Long Seat Tube extension, Rear Brake Noodle missing.

This is my understanding of how Kona altered their frame size measuring method for their catalogue listing and sales:

All models from 1988 to 1992 - Actual Seat Tube length from the Top of Bottom Bracket shell to the Top of Seat Tube.

With the introduction of the Hei Hei in 1991 however, newly commissioned manufacturer TST were stamping these Hei Hei frames with the length taken from the Centre of the Bottom Bracket to the Top of the Seat Tube. This explains the absence of any 16” and 18” Hei Hei frames on the Serial Number List until 1993, as Kona would have listed and sold the Centre to Top 16” and 18” TST stamped frame as 15” and 17” respectively, but 15” and 17” were not available for the Hei Hei in their ’91 & ’92 catalogues:

I have several sales receipts that demonstrate the discrepancy between TST’s Serial Number stamping, and Kona’s catalogue listing and sales measuring method: e.g. Serial Number B21022 stamped on frame and documented on the sales receipt as Ser# B21022, but also documented and sold as size 20” on the sales receipt.

1993 onwards – Kona altered their frame size measuring method to be taken from the Centre of Bottom Bracket to Top of Seat Tube – see page 15 of the 1993 Catalogue for supplementary dimension β€œA” added to the diagram of the Frame Geometry.

1993:
BG16007 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube extension! Verbal from 24pouces.
BG16012 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension.
B17347 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, genuine looking 1993 Decals.
BG18011 - Bullet (with no triangle cut-out), Long Seat Tube extension? Awaiting pictures of frame.
B.G.18014 - Bullet (with no triangle cut-out), Long Seat Tube extension.
BG18024 - Bullet referred to, but pictures now deleted via Photobucket.
B18105 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension.
B18136 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension.
B19497 - Pre-Bullet, No Canti Bridge!?!, Long Seat Tube extension. Possibly ’93 transition.
B19536 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension.
B19602 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, 1994 Replica Decals.
B19655 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, genuine looking ’94 Top & Down Tube Decals, Top Tube Cable Stop removed :eek: – evidence showing in picture!
B19666 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, 1998 Downtube Decal.
B19667 - Bullet, with RB member’s measurements confirming that this is pre-suspension geometry, which confirms 1993.
B19684 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, genuine looking 1993 Decals.
BG21030 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube extension, mixture of genuine looking 1993 & 1996 Decals.

1994:
B16054 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension, added Top Tube Rear Brake Stop.
B16078 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension,, β€˜94 Kona Custom Decals, ’93 Headtube Decal.
B16090 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension, pictures on file with original '94 Decals - now removed except Seat Tube Oval β€œK” 3-2.5 Titanium Tubing Decal.
B17409 - Short Seat Tube Extension, complete original ’94 Decals; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B17411 - Short Seat Tube Extension, Evidence of ’94 Silver Top Tube Hei Hei Decal, Orange and Silver β€˜94 Headtube Decal, ’94/’95 3-2.5 Titanium Tubing Seat Tube Decal; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B18187 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension.
B18196 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension, '94 Seat Tube Decal & remainder '96.
B18235 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension, genuine looking 1994 Decals, confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B18240 - Verbal only, awaiting pictures. Short Seat Tube extension, c/w ’93 β€œDesigned by Joe Murray” Decal.
B18263 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension, were 1997 replica Decals, replaced with 1995 Decals; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B18272 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension c/w Kona Custom and Head Tube Decal only; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B18319 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube extension, Genuine 1994 Decals, but with a duplicated Serial Number of a frame in Milwaukee! (Seen both simultaneously in the different countries – this one in South of France)
B18319 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube extension, 1 off 1995 replica Hei Hei Top Tube Decal (Font too tall), this duplicate Serial Number in Milwaukee to a frame in South of France – see above.
B19692 - Bullet, Long Seat Tube Extension, ’98 Decals.
B19762 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension, replica 1994 decals; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B19783 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension, replica 1994 decals; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B20515 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Extension, Headtube Decal only; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.
B20527 - Bullet, Short Seat Tube Etension, traces of ’94 decals; confirmation of ’95 Geometry.

The 1995 catalogue shows the Hei Hei with a flatter Top Tube / shorter Seat Tube extension geometry, while the previous year’s 1994 catalogue shows the more traditional sloping Top Tube Kona geometry. It seems however that the short Seat Tube extension version was available both years.

Introduction of 17” frames to U.K. Catalogue.

1995:
B16138 - Short Seat Tube extension, 1995 Gold Decals.
B16184 - Picture now deleted, but flatter Top Tube referred to on RB thread.
B17436 - Short Seat Tube extension, c/w ’94 Decals - formerly ’93 Decals.
B17444 - Short Seat Tube extension (no picture – but figured out from quoted measurements).
B18328 - Short Seat Tube extension, 2002 Decals.
B18329 - Short Seat Tube extension, original 1995 Gold Decals.
B18347 - Short Seat Tube, Headtube Decal only.
B18404 - Short Seat Tube extension, Disc Tab – now removed, Top Tube Cable Guide drilled out, now c/w replica β€˜94/5 Decals.
B19828 - Verbal only.
B19860 - Short Seat Tube extension, 1995 replica Decals.
B19901 - Short Seat Tube extension, c/w ’96 Decals (same 95/96 crossover as B20594?).
B19909 - Short Seat Tube extension, 1997 replica Decals.
B20529 - Short Seat Tube extension, 1995 Headtube Decal only.
B20538 - Short Seat Tube extension, No Decals.
B20545 - Short Seat Tube extension, genuine 1995 Decals.
B20559 - Short Seat Tube extension, No Decals.
B20594 - Short Seat Tube extension, c/w '96 decals - told it’s a 1995 build for the 1996 model year.

1996:
B17553 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, replica 1997 Yellow Decals.
B18440 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, no Decals.
B18448 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, Blue Decals.
B18471 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, one Blue Decal.
B18555 – verbal only from Bike Index.
B19929 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, Blue Decals.
B19985 - Top Tube: 1996 style front & rear Stops for Rear Brake Cable, 1997 Blue Decals.
B19997 – Verbal from Anthony’s records.

1997:
B17577 - Early Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
B18571 – Early Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
B18589 - Early Downtube Rear Mech Routing, 1999 Decals.
B18595 – Early Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
B18597 - Verbal only.
B18609 - Early Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
B19941 - Later Top tube Rear Mech Routing, Blue Decals – Sales Invoice 24th July 1997.
B20636 – Later Top tube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
B20638 - Later Top tube Rear Mech Routing, Orange 1997 then 1998 Decals.

Una S.S.
Apparently raffled off at an Interbike Show with the proceeds going to IMBA, this one off Single Speed version of a Hei Hei Frame has a 1997 sequential Serial Number:
B18607 - Single Speed Dropouts, Single Top Tube Brake Stops front & rear, 1998 Decals, Top half painted Lime Green

1998:
KH20012 – Verbal only from MTBR member, no picture.
KH19016 – Verbal only.
KH18022 - Original Decals complete.
KH18047 - Painted top 2/3 Lime Green, Original Decals complete.
KH18049 - 1998 Headtube, Seat Tube and "Handmade Made In U.S.A." Decals, with replica β€˜95 Decals Down Tube and Top Tube Decals.

1999:
KH20021 – Evidence of Red Paint stripped from Headtube, Seat Tube Decal only.
KH17032 – Red Painted Head Tube, Thumbs Up, Titanium Seat Tube and Head Tube Decals only.
KH17039 – Red Painted Head Tube possibly β€œscraped away” to form flames, Seat Tube & Head Tube Decals only.
KH19048 – Claimed evidence of removed Red paint inside Headtube & original β€˜99 owner’s handbook, Replica 1998 Decals c/w 1997 Kona Custom decal. verbal from RadNomad.
KH20056 - Picture of Serial Number only.
KH20057 - Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals, Disc Tab.
KH17063 - Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals.
KH20071 - Unpainted Headtube, Headtube and Seat Tube Decals only.
KH17078 - Unpainted Headtube, No Decals.
KH18085 - Unpainted Headtube, evidence of Red Painted Head Tube on front Cable Stops and inside Head Tube, c/w replica 1997 Yellow King Kahuna Decals.
KH19096 – Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals, Verbal only from MTBR member.
KH19099 – Unpainted Headtube, Headtube Decal only.
KH19101 – Unpainted Headtube (sandblasted), No Decals.
KH18114 – Verbal only from Bike Index.
KH18119 - Unpainted Headtube, Red 1998 style Decals.
KH18120 - Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals.
KH18135 - Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals.
KH19142 – Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals.
KH19146 – Unpainted Headtube, Red Go Faster Decals.

The King Kahuna was introduced in 1996, but that year’s model was unique with its’ 6Al – 4V rear triangle. These have same B prefix as the ’91-β€˜97 Hei Hei, but the 3 digit serial number has a suffix of β€œ-64”. They also share the same round 3Al - 2.5v tubing Front Triangle as the 1994/5 Hei Hei with no gussets and the flatter Top Tube / Shorter Seat Tube extension geometry.

King Kahuna Frame Numbers 1996 – 2000:

1996 6-4:

B17492-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B17495-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B17501-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Head Tube and β€œThumbs Up” Decals only.
B17512-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Original Gold Decals replaced with almost period correct Gold Decals.
B18418-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, No Decals.
B18428-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Disc Tab, No Decals.
B18433-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Blue Decals.
B19872-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B19893-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B19900-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, One Piece Disc Tab, Blue Seat Stay Decals, Blue β€˜97 Headtube Decal, remainder Orange replica 1997.
B19903-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Blue Decals.
B20561-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals
B20563-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B20565-64 - Short Seat Tube extension, Gold Decals.
B20577-64 - Short Seat Tube, Partly obscured, but likely to be 577 – one piece Disc Tab, No Decals.
B20604-64 - Short Seat Tube, 1999 Hei Hei Decals

1997:
K18003 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
K16007 – Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Blue Decals.
K19009 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, verbal on RB.
K19011 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals, purchased new 21/11/96.
K19015 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Yellow Decals.
K20019 – Verbal from andrewl.
K17021 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Team Rasta Flame - Leslie Greene or Tomlinson 17”, Yellow Decals.
K18031 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Blue Decals.
K17038 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, added Disc Tab, 2000 Down Tube, Seat Tube & Headtube Decals with β€˜96 Seat Stay 6-4 Jungle Decal in white/silver on Top Tube.
K1704# - Downtube Rear Mech Routing.
K19041 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, β€˜99 Decals Blue edge, Disc Tab.
K19049 – Verbal only.
K19063 - Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Blue Decals.
K19065 – Downtube Rear Mech Routing, Disc Tab, Replica 1997 Decals.
K18066 - All Top Tube Routing, Stars β€˜n’ Bars, Blue Decals.
K18073 - All Top Tube Routing, Blue Decals.
K19087 - All Top Tube Routing, Yellow Decals.
K19088 - All Top Tube Routing, Disc Tab formerly Blue Decals, now 1999 Decals.

1998:
KK17000 – No Decals.
KK18001 – No original Decals - a collage of β€œSplatter K” Logos, and sprayed Kona Down Tube Decal in 2006 Stencil Font.
KK20001 - Original Decals complete.
KK17005 - Verbal from e-Bay advert.
KK19016 – Top and Downtube Decals missing.
KK16026 – Disc Tab & Seat Stay Cable Guide, full set of replica 1998 Decals c/w Kona Custom.
KK19026 - Original Decals complete.
KK20030 – Verbal from bestmtb.
KK20031 – Original Decals complete.
KK19033 - Factory Team Decal on Seat Tube.
KK19038 - Verbal from Anthony via e-Bay advert.
KK20039 – Disc Tab & Seat Stay Cable Guide, 2001 Downtube & Headtube Decals.
KK19047 - 1998 Top Tube Decal c/w 1999 Downtube Decal, now Orange 1998 style Decals.
KK19048 - Craigslist advert.
KK18053 - Verbal on RB.
KK19053 - Disc Tab, 1998 Kona Downtube Decal & Hei Hei Top Tube Decal c/w extra Black and White King Kahuna Jungle logo Decal & Sliver 6-4 Decal on Seat stay, with Silver β€œKing” Decal on Downtube near Thumbs Up Decal with another on the Headtube, 1996 Spiral Headtube Decal.
KK19058 – Disc Tab & Seat Stay Cable Guide, No Decals.

1999:
KK16005 - Painted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK17009 - Painted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK17043 - Painted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK18026 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK18039 - Blue painted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK19054 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK18062 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals, Top Tube Decal now Missing.
KK20064 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals, Disc Tab.
KK19066 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK19067 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.
KK19070 - Unpainted Headtube, Orange Go Faster Decals.

2000:
Despite featuring in the 2000 catalogue, it appears that this model was not available. JP Saville who ran Second Level Sport, the UK distributor, cannot recall importing any.
To date, I have not seen any pictures of a 2000 King Kahuna in the wild.
Read here

Score Frame Numbers 2000:
Production of the Score was halted mid-season, allegedly due to the cost of producing the frame. Dan Capek at Kona told me that if he had to guess, between 20 and 50 Score frames were built.

Another source however that seems more certain, said that 100 Score frames were made. Fifty 15’’, Forty 17'' and Ten 17'' - long (longer top tube).

The 18” frame was never documented in any of the Kona Spec – only 15”, 17” and 17” Long - or Small, Medium & Long. Nevertheless, I now own one in 18”, and I’ve seen one more 18” Score for sale in the U.S. in an old Pinkbike advert, which may possibly be mine before it came to the U.K.

KS15003 - Verbal from Anthony via e-Bay advert, no picture.
KS15004 – Original Decals complete.
KS15006 – No Decals.
KS15020 - Original Decals complete.
KS15022 - Original Seat Tube Decal, 2001 Down Tube Decal – now removed.
KS17083 - Original Decals complete.
KS17084 - Original Decals complete.
KS17088 - Verbal on RB via e-Bay advert.
KS17090 – Seat Tube and Head Tube Decals only.
KS17094 - Original Decals complete.
KS17098 – Photo of Serial Number only.
KS18170 – Replica Seat Tube Decal, remaining original Decals complete.

It would appear that my 18” frame was not part of the documented production run, which may explain its high serial number.

Haole Frame Numbers 1992 – 1994:

1992:
Three Cable Guides along top of Top Tube (for Cable Outer), Integrated Seat Tube clamp at rear. Pre-Bullet Dropouts.
B57002 - Pre-Bullet, Integral Seat Post Clamp, 1” Headtube.
B57020 - Pre-Bullet, Seat Post Binder visible in pictures – possibly in addition to Integral Clamp?
B57025 - Pre-Bullet, Integral Seat Post Clamp, 1” Headtube.
B55041 - Pre-Bullet, Integral Seat Post Clamp.
B55084 - Quoted on RB, 1" Headtube.

1993: Cable Stops front and rear along lower LHS of Top Tube, Bullet Dropouts, Seat Post Binder Collar c/w rear slot.
B59531 – Bullet, Seat Post Binder, 1" Headtube.
B59537 - Bullet, Seat Post Binder.

1994: Cable Stops front and rear along lower LHS of Top Tube, Bullet Dropouts, Seat Post Binder Collar c/w rear slot.
B55081 – Verbal from e-Bay. I assume that the β€œ0” could possibly be a β€œ6” (see below), which would make more sense regarding the dating of a 1994 frame. A rare painted example, with genuine looking 1994 Decals and a bit of Ti exposed. The Bottom Bracket area is painted, which may have filled in the digits causing the owner to mistake a 6 for a 0.

To Be Continued, Pip...
 
Last edited:

Pipmeister

Senior Retro Guru
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Can anyone expand further on what we know regarding the serial number format on Kona Titanium frames?

Recap:
The Kona Titanium frames from 1991 to 2000 were made by Titanium Sports Technologies (TST or Ti Sports) in Kennewick, Washington State. My understanding is that Ti Sports were responsible for the frame’s serial numbers. This information comes from someone at Kona, Vancouver who was relying on his memory after I contacted him recently. He was working for Kona when these frames were made, so let’s assume that his memory is correct.

From 1991 to 1997 the Hei Hei has a prefix of a capital letter β€œB”. The next two digits are the frame’s size in inches, and this is followed by a 3 digit sequential serial number: e.g. B18456.

It appears that Ti Sports ran out of the 3 digit serial numbers at 999 in 1997, so rather than going to 4 digits, they started again in 1998 with a different prefix.

From 1998 to 1999 the Hei Hei had a prefix of β€œKH”. The remaining digits follow the same format: e.g. KH18068

As far as we know, there are no 2000 Hei Hei frames.

The King Kahuna started production in 1996 and was made until 2000. The 1996 frames have the same B prefix as the ’91-β€˜97 Hei Hei, but the 3 digit serial number has a suffix of β€œ-64” to signify the 6Al – 4V rear triangle ; e.g. B18789-64.

The 1997 King Kahuna frames have a prefix of β€œK” and follow the same format as all of the above; e.g. K18123

The 1998 to 2000 King Kahuna frames have a prefix of β€œKK” and follow the same format as all of the above, although my records show that Ti Sports zeroed the 3 digit serial number again; e.g. KK18034

The ultra rare Score was made for the 2000 line-up, but had its production halted mid-season, so there are very few examples out there. These have a prefix of KS, and then follow the same format: e.g. KS18009.

Ti Sports used the 3 digit sequential number through the years of production, but there seems to be no particular start number or end number for each of those years: i.e. if 1994 frames happened to end at number 725, then the 1995 model would commence at 726. This explains to some extent why it is not possible to directly date a frame from its serial number – just a general collection of knowledge of what numbers ended up being used during any particular year of production.

Stop yawning :roll: - Nearly there :) :

Kona have documented on a Timeline that they produced 4,000 Titanium frames over the 10 years from 1991 - 2000, which average out at 400 per year. This would vary greatly from year to year during the decade, particularly when the King Kahuna was introduced. I will reference that figure later.

Here’s The Rub:
Did Ti Sports use each 3 digit sequential serial number only once across all frame sizes?,
OR
Did they repeat the 3 digit serial numbers but with the frame size prefix keeping it unique?

To date, I have never seen any 3 digit serial number repeated across two (or more) frame sizes, but this causes an issue that I recently discovered…….

Incidentally, despite some of the catalogues from 1991 – 2000 documenting 14” and 21” frames in the Spec pages, I have only ever seen 16”, 17”, 18”, 19” and 20” frames, so I will go with that assumption for now. I will use real examples of Hei Hei frames with confirmed serial numbers that I have pictures of.

So taking three examples from the middle years of production ’93 – ’95, and using 19” as one of the more common sizes, I have on file:
1993 – B19463
1994 – B19655
1995 – B19762

All is clear so far; you can see how the sequential numbers progress through the years.

What confuses matters is that I have a good set of pictures for both a 1994 16” frame that has the serial number B16054, and a 1995 17” frame that has serial number B17436 :? .

Question:
How it is that serial number 054 hadn’t been used until 1994 on a 16” frame, and likewise serial number 436 hadn’t been used until 1995 on a 17”, when both those serial numbers had already been exceeded earlier historically (by 1993) on the 19” frames?

Is it case that the serial numbers are indeed use more than once over the various sizes, and as 16” is a less common size, that it took until 1994 for the number to be used on a 16”; i.e. there had only been 53 of the 16” frames made from 1991 up to and including 1994?

This sequence method would mean that serial number 054 is also on a 19” frame, presumably made in the first year of production as they got to serial number 463 by 1993 as seen on my example on file. Referring to the 4,000 total again, we can assume that the numbers produced of each frame size in an average year of 400 are approximately:

16” – 15 off | 17” – 70 off | 18” – 125 off | 19” – 125 off | 20” – 65 off…. or thereabouts.

This would be in keeping with relatively low serial number of B16054 on the 16” frame not appearing until 1994.

Go figure!

Pip

Edit to alter thread title
 

Minifreak

Old School Grand Master
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

Thank you for the info pip, very detailed and informative :)

So my 1991 Hei Hei frame number B17001 may not be the first made of that year but certainly the first in that size?

If only we could source every one made.
 

Pipmeister

Senior Retro Guru
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

Minifreak":235n0ris said:
Thank you for the info pip, very detailed and informative :)

So my 1991 Hei Hei frame number B17001 may not be the first made of that year but certainly the first in that size?

If only we could source every one made.
I would say that your frame was indeed made in the first batch produced by Ti Sports, and for that reason alone is something to be cherished :D .

I hope that it doesn't deter too much from its uniqueness, when I say that Ti Sports did start at "000" - well at least they did when they zeroed the sequential serial numbers for the King Kahuna in 1998. I almost didn't want to show you this but......

17 inch KK17000 by Philip Mock, on Flickr

Pip
 

Minifreak

Old School Grand Master
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

No worries, doubt B17000 will ever surface ;)

Always wanted an early 90’s Kona as to me as a young teenager they were the bike I wanted, having a Ti one is the icing on the cake!
 

sovereign

Rocky Mountain Fan
Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

Own a 19" Hei Hei sold in Germany 05/92, the serial is close too 500.

Cheers
 

Minifreak

Old School Grand Master
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

sovereign":2e2g1gc8 said:
Own a 19" Hei Hei sold in Germany 05/92, the serial is close too 500.

Cheers

Interesting, maybe it was sequential per frame then and not by each size ;)
 

Pipmeister

Senior Retro Guru
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

sovereign":xcouaikh said:
Own a 19" Hei Hei sold in Germany 05/92, the serial is close too 500.

Cheers
Thank you for your help with my thread.

Are you saying that you currently own a Hei Hei that was sold new in Germany in May 1992?

If it was new in 1992, it is likely to be a 1992 model, but could even be earlier.

Are you able to post a picture of the frame / bike to this thread, and can you take a picture of the serial number?

If you struggle with adding pictures to a post on here, or if would prefer not to reveal the serial number to the www, you are welcome to my e-mail address.

Cheers, Pip.
 

24pouces

BoTM Triple Crown
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My first HeiHei serial number was 16007. But the rear dropouts got bullets like 1993 and really early 1992 HeiHei got different dropouts with Mc Mahon/ Sandvik design
 

Woz

Old School Grand Master
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Re: Kona Titanium Frame Serial Numbers:

Interesting. I too understood the serial number was a TST thing. The DBR Axis TT serial number is the same format.

So, are the last three digits infact a simple TST sequential number for whatever frame they produced regardless of brand?

When it hit 1000 , they simply started again at 000, and at 2000, 000 etc. etc. It may explain the weird patterns.
 
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