Specialized Releases Artsy Limited-Edition Chisel Framesets

Feb 19, 2021
by Alicia Leggett  
The Earth design

Specialized has pursued an unprecedented level of artistry with the new Chisel LTD frameset, which aims to represent the elements of earth, air, fire, and water in four colorways. The theme and inspiration, according to Specialized, is the idea that the natural world is decaying as the digital world expands, hence the series name Disrupting the Decay.

From the Specialized website:

bigquotesJust as the Chisel rides a thin ribbon of dirt through the landscape, we are riding a thin line between a physical and digital reality in our daily lives–a line that is becoming increasingly blurred every day. As our natural world decays and our digital world continues to expand, we challenge you to question the relationship of the two with our latest Artist Series – Disrupt the Decay. We used the elements of Earth, Air, Fire, and Water as inspiration to push against the digital world to create four unique, limited-edition Chisel frames that beg the question, “Where does one world end and the other begin?

The Chisel is the Epic Hardtail’s alloy sister but has marginally more aggressive numbers than the race-bred carbon version. It has internal cable routing, BSA bottom bracket threading, and 12x148 rear hub spacing. Each frame comes with a coffee-table book that showcases the art and thought processes of the artists.

The Air design

Specialized explains each design:

EARTH: The subdued colors on the Earth frame are inspired by the ceramic-like tones and textures of the desert landscape interrupted with a digital glitch effect, creating a gap in the information. The glitch appears on areas of the seatstay and the collage photography of the seat tube.

AIR: The luminous wash on the Air frame symbolizes the fog rolling over the hills off the Pacific colliding with Silicon Valley. Just as the fog envelopes you in the natural world, the digital world can also envelope you in its technicolor infinity, which is represented in the colorful and glitch-filled logos.

FIRE: Fire can be overwhelming and creates a barrier, with only small gaps between the flames to pass through. Similarly, digital firewalls are a barrier, only allowing small pieces of data to pass through. Reflective foil pieces under red tint on the Fire frame represent data passing through, while the Chisel graphic on the seat tube melts from the heat of fire.

WATER: The flowing layers of color on the Water frame are inspired by the shifting blues of Icelandic lakes. This flow also takes place in the digital world through the binary code of 1’s and 0’s. Binary 1’s and 0’s create the Specialized downtube logo and the S head tube badge. When translated to English, the binary reads “Nature Digital Nature Digital…” over and over again.

The Earth and Air framesets are available now for $1,500 USD, and the Fire and Water designs are expected to become available in June.

Fire
Water



74 Comments

  • 66 0
 Yay. Last Airbender frames. I live knowing my true wish has been fulfilled
  • 25 0
 But then the fire frame attacked....
  • 15 0
 Yip yip!
  • 2 0
 Awesome reference for those who know or care to look up
  • 1 0
 Yes, I am totally in for this crossover.
  • 8 0
 Assuming water and fire are the same price it'll only cost you $6000 to become the avatar
  • 4 0
 Can't wait to go ride through some street vendors cabbage cart on it!
  • 50 1
 Calling a frame "artsy" is a good way to make a custom frame painter throw him/herself off a cliff.
  • 1 0
 hahaha
  • 17 2
 I mean, they're cool but 'custom' is a pretty strong word
  • 25 0
 It’s also a good way to charge $1000 more than the frame is worth
  • 7 0
 @alicialeggett: It's like saying a bike is a "custom" build. I expect to see all these crazy custom CNC parts dangling and then inevitably see a GX drivetrain with an XO derailleur.
  • 1 1
 I dont know too many artists who would refer to themselves as 'artsy. On top of that, these designs are created by artists.
  • 26 0
 This looks like Specialized’s solution to selling off their frame inventory due to component supply chain shortages next year. Slap fancy paint on them and make frame-only a thing.
  • 4 0
 @blackthorne:
jesus thats accurate
  • 1 0
 @alicialeggett: yea it’s like “bespoke” wheels on a civic... only half a million unique rims..
  • 1 1
 @RonSauce: sounds artsy
  • 31 0
 Very nice idea, but I'm still waiting for the delivery of the regular Chisel frameset that I ordered last November. I hope it is not being painted over and sold to someone else as part of this new release...
  • 17 0
 And what about the Earth, Wind and Fire version ?
  • 25 0
 That drops Sept 21st.
  • 5 0
 @ODubhslaine: Checks calendar....nope, not a Saturday in September.
  • 3 0
 Would you still ride it after the love has gone?
  • 2 0
 That’s brilliant @chezotron:
  • 15 0
 Can someone please explain the $1500 worth of features here?
  • 2 0
 Comes with a accompanying book? I wonder how many chapters?
  • 3 1
 It's one of the nicest aluminium frames you can get, which explains $1000, and then it's limited edition, which explains the extra $500.
  • 2 1
 @samimerilohi: Agreed, it's actually not a bad value and they are beautiful bikes.
  • 2 0
 @samimerilohi: Sales associate of the year. Haha! If you’re serious then I guess that means there’s a market so... whatever...
  • 1 0
 You pay more for artwork man.
  • 13 2
 Am I the only one that wants to have a word with specialized for constantly releasing frames and bikes that are “Special Editions” when the normal spec bikes aren’t even in stock? Like cmon specialized, I love your products but 8-10 month waits on bikes for the masses yet you release CARBON STRIDER BIKES?!?!?
  • 4 0
 I think you're going to be shocked by how few of these actually came in. The two available colorways were mostly out of stock by the time any announcements were made and they never even appeared on the dealer site. I'm not disagreeing with you, just saying these probably consumed way fewer resources than you might think.
  • 9 0
 wait for the summer of Love real LSD you can lick paint scheme
  • 4 0
 "The SNOZZBERRIES taste like SNOZBERRIES!"
  • 6 0
 I feel like whoever wrote the descriptions would be the worst to have a beer with. They would use words like "charcuterie" and refer you to an NPR podcast on it they found really "informative."
  • 7 0
 I can picture a Fred Armisen (Portlandia) character reading those descriptions.
  • 2 0
 I like these, and the idea with both Spec and Norco (I think Norco, haven't played with their site). It's just different. And ultimately, for the haters, market conditions will decide for you. If it's truly that bad an idea and they don't sell any then they'll quit on this idea, paint them solid and will have no problem selling them that way.

I'm with @brianpark ...I'm not a roadie and my only Spesh is an all-black AWOL (that I've owned for 4 years already), but some of their road bikes come in some really nifty colourways. And the last Stumpy I looked at on our shop floor was a super-rad blue-cleared carbon. If colour is your dealbreaker then go your own way or grab some Spray.Bike.
  • 5 0
 "Specialized has pursued an unprecedented level of artistry" ????
  • 2 0
 The only thing Specialized has pioneered here is unprecedented levels of wankery.

Don't get me wrong, I love good kit with good paint jobs, but let's not pretend this was anything more than someone saying "brah! wouldn't it be cool to paint these designs on some of those frames?!?! RAD."
  • 3 0
 Earth, Fire, Wind, Water, Heart! GO PLANET! By your powers combined I am Captain Planet! Feels like maybe they missed a trick
  • 1 0
 With all frames combined we are biking the planet!
  • 2 0
 How about Scissors, Paper, Stone versions, then we can witness folks at the trail top trying to hide bikes behind their backs as they attempt to work out who sends down the hill first.
  • 4 1
 Trying to decide how I feel about this... I keep coming back to somewhere between No and Disingenuous.
  • 1 0
 Disrupting decay with wet paint and hydroforming--they can't be composted
  • 2 1
 I like the environmental message of the real decay of the planet while the digital world grows. There is no planet B. Specialized has marketing courage and integrity which I respect. My fave is the water.
  • 1 0
 Wonder what the paint formula is though. Probably not powder-coated (which is more eco-friendly by nature).
  • 1 0
 1500 for an alu frame? No thanks...... and what is up with all the special paintjobs? I mean all the TLD speci frames looked like crap in the past.

Just make a raw carbon enduro s works frame already
  • 1 0
 These are £1100 in the UK, ~£600 for a good hardtail frame + >£400 for a custom paintjob, so if these flavours are to your liking its not bad here. Personally I like the Earth, providing the coat/finish is good.
  • 1 0
 I rather just pay the £400 to kustomflow or Fatcreations and get it truly custom painted.. £1100 is absurd for an alloy hardtail frame. Back in 2010 I paid £1700 for a Scott Scale 20, full carbon, 9.5kg, full XT build. Now they want £4k for an equivalent build on an alloy frame..
  • 2 0
 The air frame is really pretty, it'll probably make your wallet feel like air too!
  • 1 0
 reading that marketing drivel makes me cringe. you make some nice stuff specialized. just sack who ever is writing this marketing spiel
  • 1 0
 Anyone know how much these cost without the special color ways? I do appreciate the artistry, but feel the MSRP is a bit steep for an alloy frame.
  • 3 0
 That's some next level marketing drivel.
  • 2 0
 The earth colorway reminds me of yogurt.
  • 3 0
 Hmmmm yoghurt!
  • 1 0
 What is this? The earth frame looks sightly different (other welds no chaintay protection) Cmon..
  • 3 0
 I dig 'em.
  • 6 8
 So the ltd frameset costs $100 less than the COMPLETE base level Chisel and only $400 less than the Chisel comp?
For a non-custom paint job? DAAAAAAMN thats a bad deal. I had almost gotten over hating Specialized but this definitely brings it back. Remember kids, the "S" is for "sucks".
  • 10 6
 No one is forcing you to buy this bike..
  • 5 3
 @Noah353: wow thanks, that never occurred to me. /sarcasm
  • 7 0
 @ratedgg13: good thing he told you...that was a close call.
  • 2 0
 What a scam. I can’t wait to see who buys these.
  • 2 0
 I’m holding out for the “Tower of Power” paint schemes
  • 2 0
 When you let a sentiment algorithm paint things for you
  • 1 0
 I thought the fire one came out on February 7th in their UK office? If only they had the water one ready to go...
  • 1 0
 If I was really thinking about buying something like this, it would be from Pegoretti and not from these guys
  • 2 0
 Ugly color schemes
  • 1 0
 So is it an XC bike being the "sister" of the epic?
  • 1 0
 Too bad the visuals didn’t live up to the hyperbolic rationale.
  • 1 0
 This. It's nice paint, but there's only so much of a story you can tell with color and vague shapes.
  • 1 0
 "Available now" - Specialized Online Store
  • 2 1
 No, just no.
  • 5 7
 Cool gravel bike frames.
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