Merlin Metalworks Inc. Fortius Ultegra Road Bike


Frame Material: 3Al/2.5V titanium
Frame Angles: 73.5 head, 73.0 seat
Sizes: xsmall, small, medium, large
Colors: Black
Fork: Merlin Carbon
Rear Shock: Unspecified
Brake Levers: Shimano Ultegra STI Dual Control
Handlebar: ITM Mantjs Super Over
Stem: ITM Mantjs Super Over
Headset: 1 1/8" integrated Cane Creek
Front Der: Shimano Ultegra
Crankset: Shimano Ultegra, 39/53 teeth
Rear Der: Shimano Ultegra SS
Pedals: Unspecified
Tires: 700 x 23c Vittoria Rubino Pro


Showing 1-2 of 2  
[Jun 13, 2013]


Perfect stiffness; very smooth ride. I prefer the Ultegra 9-speed groupset - it simply functions perfectly for me. This bike fits me perfectly. USA made titanium frame. Very classy looking gloss black paint on part of frame; and natural Ti on other part.


Came with Mavic Cosmos wheelset - I feel the wheelset on this bike, although satisfactory, is not quite up to par with the frame and other components.

I was lucky to purchase a used Merlin Fortis that fits me nearly perfectly - although, I had to put a shorter handlebar stem to get the perfect fit. This bike is a dream to ride - good acceleration, comfortable, smooth ride. Very classy looks with it's glossy black paint mixed with natural titanium seat and chain stays. For me, the bike is more than light enough, although I haven't been able to weight it on an accurate scale yet. I'm sure an all carbon fiber bike will weigh in slightly less than this solid titanium frame, but I could easily shed a little weight with a lighter wheelset, should I ever have the need to. I don't like to change frames and components once I have everything dialed in - I will keep my bicycles and still have my steel frame road bike that I purchased in 1988. In 20 some odd years, the steel has rusted in the lugs, cable stops and other places, so no matter how much you baby your steel bike, it will eventually rust. I expect this titanium Merlin to last me through the end of my bicycle riding days and plan on putting some good hard miles on it.

[Oct 25, 2005]
Recreational Rider


- Ti frame made in U.S. - beautiful welds and workmanship - nice finish - robust 9spd Ultegra components - Vittoria Rubino Pro Slicks - lifetime warranty on frame!


- kinda overpriced for 9spd road bike - LBS setup (sold me 42 bar when i needed 44/46) - Merlin's Web site and customer interaction following registration kinda sucks (i.e., NONE) - compact geometry (felt too small initially, but after dial-in is very comfortable) - chain experienced surface rivet rust, and was replaced w/Wipperman (live in saltwater air area, so no real biggie)

- purchased as a workout/morning ride bike... my Fortius has straight seat stays and curved chain stays w/the Kellogg geometry... early models had curved seat stays? serial #M31827-8... bike was equipped w/Ultegra 9spd components... i wanted a bike made in U.S.A. w/non-integrated (i.e., 'normal') headset... the Fortius came with a Cane Creek S2 headset... frame is one lb. heavier than the Merlin Magia, but has almost *exact* geometry in same size!!! no clear coat finish, but who needs that with Ti, right? the Fortius is an entry-level Merlin frame, but has the engraved Merlin work on the bottom bracket... head badge is affixed w/two bolts... includes bolts for two water bottles... frame cleanliness is maintained w/dollar-store orange furniture polish in spray can (that's all Ti needs)... overall: very happy with this bike... it will never be sold or replaced and is a lifetime purchase... even though not top-of-the-line, at this point in time, the bike represents classic workmanship from a large-scale U.S. bike factory - perhaps the last of its kind?

Similar Products Used:

- Specialized AL road bike

Roadbikereview Newsletter

Get the latest roadbike reviews, news, race results, and much more by signing up for the Roadbikereview Newsletter




© Copyright 2021 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.