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Model history – Litespeed Obed hardtail MTB frame

The Litespeed Obed. “Poor man’s titanium mountain bike?” Although that’s how the Obed has been described even in Litespeed’s own marketing of the frame, don’t think that implies the Obed is somehow a second-tier hardtail. The Obed was second-tier in terms of price only. The reputation of the Obed is stellar. And, since titanium “lasts forever,” the fact that there are many Obed frames in circulation means that you can likely even get your hands on one, given a bit of patience at least.

Litespeed Obed from 1994 catalog

The Obed was initially released in 1994 and produced through 1999. There was no Obed in Litespeed’s 2000 catalog. The model was brought back in 2007, and at that time the Obed was offered in both 26″ and 29er versions. That continued through 2008, at which time the Obed was again dropped as Litespeed was unable to produce as many titanium models as in years prior.

The following details show the changes in design and specs of the Obed between its initial 1994 to 1999 run, and then during its brief 2007-2008 reincarnation.

Note: the information below was culled from Litespeed marketing materials, which show inconsistent information over time. I have highlighted the year-to-year changes in design and/or specs. Please comment on omissions and discrepancies below.

1994

  • 3/2.5 titanium tubing
  • S-bend seatstays
  • 1-1/8” headtube
  • 68mm BB, machined from 6-4 solid bar
  • 27.2mm seatpost diameter
  • 14” to 20.5”, 2.7 to 3.5 lbs

1995

  • 12” to 19.5”, 3.03 to 3.38 lbs

1996

  • Tapered/butted seattube
  • Asymmetric/S-bend chainstays
  • 12” to 19.5”, 3.12 to 3.47 lbs

1997

  • 14” to 19.5”, 3.18 to 3.56 lbs

1998

  • 14” to 19.5”, 3.28 to 3.67 lbs

1999

  • Biaxially ovalized downtube
  • Cable guides with smoothed corners
  • New multiplane asymmetric chainstays for reduced chain slap and excellent crank-arm clearance
  • 14” to 19.5”, 3.29 to 3.67 lbs

2000-2006 Obed not in Litespeed’s product line-up

2007

  • RDS dropout system enables changing from conventional to singlespeed dropouts.
  • GET tubeset offers uncompromised stiffness, ride quality, and durability.
  • Quad-TECH” (??) curved chainstays
  • 100 – 120mm fork compatibility
  • SM to LG (21.5” to 24.5” toptube length), 3.07 to 3.38 lbs
  • SM to LG 29er sizes available (22.5” to 25” toptube length)

2008

  • no changes

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