For those who don’t know much about the Stelbel name allow us to go a little bit into their history. Stelbel is one of Italy’s finest frame builders, they’ve been around since the early 70s and are the originators of TIG welding technology applied to bike building. Yep, you read that right they are the ones who initially used that technology during a time when lugged frames were king. The name “Stelbel” comes from Stelio Belleti, Stelio learned to weld in his father’s workshop located in the Ortica disctrict of Milan. His father, Antenore, specialized in frame construction and metal tubing structures for the motorcycle and aeronautical industries. Because of that background, they were the one of the first to import a TIG welding machine in Italy.
Stelio has always been a huge cycling fan, in the early 70s he was gaining a lot of experience building motorcycle frames and aircraft fuselages, and it was during that time that he started experimenting building bicycle frames combining steel tubing and TIG welding, which at the time had never been done. The Stelbel story started by chance, Stelio bought a bike and really didn’t like it, “it was no good, not even to ride to the store and back” he said. There were some steel pipes laying around the shop that were thick and heavy. Using those pipes they decided to build a bike that met Stelio’s standards, and the first “Telaio Belleti” was born. We won’t go too deep into more history, we’ll leave that for a future feature coming to MRCC very soon. Instead, let’s fast forward to 2016 and go into detail about the Stelbel Antenore.
The Antenore, named after Stelio’s father. Is the most exclusive frame in the Stelbel line, it is “designed for extensive and proffesional use”. It uses Colombus XCr stainless steel alloy tubing, which is individually selected and customized for this particular frame. The frame is a tribute to Stelio’s father, who taught him everything he knows and was the best teacher Steilo could have ever hoped for.
Stelio is a genius when it comes to bicycle building. All the knowledge he had with welding special metal alloys was passed down to him by his father. The Antenore is the modern version of the frames Stelbel was developing in the early 80s using TIG welding, much earlier than the rest of the industry.
Let’s take the chain stays for example, which have a non-conical oval section that’s a distinctive feature to modern Stelbel frames. These custom designed chain-stays compliment C15 rear drops outs are a CNC machined from a single block! That’s pretty amazing.
Going to the tapered headtube which is a conical design made with AISI 316 stainless steel tubing, it comes with a Chris King headset which allows you yo install a conical Columbus fork.
The details on this bike are never ending, the engraved and drilled bottom bracket is also made of AISI 304 stainless steel and has BSA threading ensuring for easy assembly. The cable routing is partially internal, which is a heated topic of conversation in your local bike shop. The love and hate of full internal cable routing is that it looks great, until you have to replace your cables. As modern as the Stelbel Antenore is, it’s great to see that not all modern technologies have found themselves here.
The Stelbel name is engraved on the head tube, bottom bracket and the brake ridge pictured above. It’s all about the details!
The original paint scheme leaves half of the frame unpainted, showing key details in the satin finished stainless steel tubing. There’s other options for color, as well as variations to this one. But here at MRCC, we recommend the original.
Like all Stelbels, the Antenore is custom made to measure. As much as we love the newest and latest bicycles, if you love bikes you have to appreciate the history of this brand and the perseverance of steel in this day and age.
We encourage everyone to check out the amazing and rich history of Stelbel by following the links below.