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Ti vs. Carbon Fiber



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 28th 05, 04:45 AM
Edward
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Default Ti vs. Carbon Fiber

I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike. I have an aluminum bike now, and want get something pretty nice.
Any thoughts on titainium vs. carbon fiber. Any input would be
appreciated...thanks

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  #2  
Old February 28th 05, 05:26 AM
Ken
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Posts: n/a
Default

"Edward" wrote in news:1109565938.714800.24070
@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com:
I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike. I have an aluminum bike now, and want get something pretty nice.
Any thoughts on titainium vs. carbon fiber. Any input would be
appreciated...thanks


Some carbon bikes are very stiff; others are flexy. Same goes for titanium.
Even with the same brand and model, different sizes will ride differently.
You can make a very strong bike from either material if you use it wisely; or
a fragile bike if you are not so wise.
  #3  
Old February 28th 05, 05:28 AM
David L. Johnson
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Default

On Sun, 27 Feb 2005 20:45:38 -0800, Edward wrote:

I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike. I have an aluminum bike now, and want get something pretty nice.
Any thoughts on titainium vs. carbon fiber. Any input would be
appreciated...thanks


Both can be made into excellent frames. I would give the advantage in
durability to titanium. It is real hard to scratch, and (if brushed) easy
to fix any scratches. Should look like new for many years, and last
longer than you will. Never needs paint. Carbon is somewhat fragile; for
example, people worry about clamping a carbon bike in a repair stand, and
damage after a crash can occur with no visible sign. (The same is true of
carbon forks, but they are cheaper than frames, so less of a problem to
replace.)

On the other hand, carbon can be quite a bit lighter. A sub-3 lb titanium
frame is hard to find and very expensive, any decent carbon frame will be
sub-3 lb. unless you are 6'5" tall.

Either material, especially carbon, is tricky to work with and needs care
to make into a reliable frame. Both can be pricey, with high-zoot
titanium frames being sold at almost any imaginable price. The difference
between very expensive and less expensive titanium frames is probably less
than the difference between carbon frames at the same prices. I would not
want to buy a cheap carbon frame, and I own an inexpensive titanium frame.

You will hear lots of BS about how titanium is "lively" or how
carbon dampens out "road buzz", and conversely how carbon is "dead" or
titanium is not stiff enough. Take all of that with a hefty dose of salt.

I decided to get a titanium frame under similar circumstances. I got mine
from Mark Hickey, www.habcycles.com , and am very happy with it. It is
not the lightest, but is well-made and at $695 is possibly the best
bargain out there. You pay a lot to lose a few grams with other brands.
But many of the people I ride with have Trek carbon bikes and are very
happy with those, too.

--

David L. Johnson

__o | A mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems.
_`\(,_ | -- Paul Erdos
(_)/ (_) |


  #4  
Old February 28th 05, 06:19 AM
Mike Jacoubowsky
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike. I have an aluminum bike now, and want get something pretty nice.
Any thoughts on titainium vs. carbon fiber. Any input would be
appreciated...thanks


The best bike is the one that makes you want to ride it every time you see
it. Best bet is to find a shop that has samples of each that you can ride,
in the right size and set up similarly, and see what you think. I'm partial
to Trek carbon fiber, but since I make a living selling them (huge numbers
of them at that), you should consider me totally biased and an entirely
unreliable source of information. :)

Nevertheless, I've written an article on our website that's entirely brand &
material neutral, designed to help people evaluate different bikes they're
looking at. You can find it at www.ChainReaction.com/roadbiketestrides.htm.

--Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReactionBicycles.com


  #5  
Old February 28th 05, 11:35 AM
Gooserider
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Posts: n/a
Default


"Edward" wrote in message
ups.com...
I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike. I have an aluminum bike now, and want get something pretty nice.
Any thoughts on titainium vs. carbon fiber. Any input would be
appreciated...thanks


Well, if you want something that will last for years and years, your choice
should be between titanium and steel. :-) I would point you toward custom
lugged steel, but that's just me. If you're not racing, and you're not a
weight weenie, steel will serve you well for the next 40 years. Nobody quite
knows how the ultralight carbon fiber frames are going to hold up. Having
seen a Spinergy carbon wheel disintegrate, and carbon bars/forks
catastropically fail, I would tend to avoid it. I know carbon's a sturdy
material, but...


  #6  
Old February 28th 05, 12:21 PM
Velo Psycho
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Default

Your LAST bike? Hah! Anyone contemplating Carbon or Ti is someone
with at least a mild bike addiction! It won't be your last bike. I
bought an Independent Fab Crown Jewel Ti.... and two months later I HAD
to have a Bianchi Pista. Then, I saw a lovely hand-made steel touring
frame that I had to have.... the stable grows and occasionally you sell
one off... but bull**** your wife, not us.

Ok... so... now that we admit that we have a problem, we can go
forward.

I have to echo Goose somewhat. Why is the choice between Carbon and
Ti? If you're looking for a great quality bike, steel is definitely
not to be ruled out. I've owned carbon, steel, ti, and aluminum, and
I've liked the ride of the steel bikes the best. I still kick myself
for selling my Waterford back in grad school. Today, I've got a
bianchi steel bike, a Gios, and an Independent Fab Ti Crown Jewel. The
IF is fantastic... and will last forever.... but the 10 year old
bianchi eros rides just as nice.

The ride difference is this - the IF seems to flex a lot - but never in
the wrong direction. I can hammer the pedals without tourqing the rear
triangle - which happened on a waterford RS-11. My waterford made from
853 steel never did that. The Gios Lite is a pretty inexpensive steel
frame, but rides wonderfully.

I'm not a fan of carbon. I don't like the ride quality of what I have
sampled. I personally don't even like the carbon fork on my IF. I
really preferred the steel fork on my Waterford (oh I miss her) and the
steel fork on my Gios. Yes, the carbon is more damping of vibration
and almost acts as a suspension fork - but I prefer steel.

Are you looking at carbon and Ti from a weight perspective? My
philosophy is this - if you are concerned about weight, go get a
body-fat measurment taken. If you're a guy who is over 12% body fat,
then you have no excuse for buying a bike based on weight.

If you're looking at your *last* bike, or if you can even say that
knowing that it isn't true... then I presume that nobody is sponsoring
you. Meaning again, weight should not be a concern at all. An extra
two pounds on your bike can be lost by spending an extra two thousand
dollars, or it can be lost from your gut by riding harder.
Conventional Wisdom, for what it's worth, is that it costs $1000 to
take a pound off of a bike. So, given that I have at least ten pounds
of extra flab on my body that I could stand to lose, I've got ten grand
worth of exercising to do before I start caring about weight. (This is
not meant to slam you nor anyone else - just to help put the weight
consideration in some perspective).

Now... if weight is off the table... lets look at durability. Ti will
last beyond the extinction of mankind. You'll never see rust on ti.
Steel, if cared for, will last longer than you will live. Both can
take an impact, be repaired, and give a great ride.

Carbon -- there are great comments above about the sketchiness of
carbon. I dont know how long a carbon frame will last.

A consideration that might seem shallow, but I think is totally
legitimate is the "bike porn" value of whatever decision you make.
Part of what I love about cycling is the beauty of the machine. I dont
think there is anything wrong with lusting after Ti, a sweet steel
frame, or even carbon. Hey, there is nothing wrong with riding OCLV
"because it is what Lance rides." Don't be a fashion slave... but for
bike porn value, I'd say that it is a toss-up.

Now... think about this too. You say this is your "last bike."
(snicker.... snort... laugh). If so, you want it to fit perfectly -
don't you? There are some carbon manufacturers who will build you a
custom frame. Jack Kane comes to mind. There are a LOT of ti and
steel manufacturers who will do the same thing. Spend some money and
get a custom frame.

Bottom line... if it were me and I could have one last bike for the
rest of my life, I would check out Independent Fab's ti or steel, or
Waterford's steel, and get them custom-built.

Have fun on your "last bike!" (just one last beer... just one last bet
at the track.... at least your addiction is a healthy one!)

  #7  
Old February 28th 05, 09:05 PM
Michael Warner
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 27 Feb 2005 20:45:38 -0800, Edward wrote:

I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike.


There is no last bike :-)

--
bpo gallery at http://www4.tpgi.com.au/users/mvw1/bpo
  #8  
Old February 28th 05, 10:57 PM
Velo Psycho
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Posts: n/a
Default


Michael Warner wrote:
On 27 Feb 2005 20:45:38 -0800, Edward wrote:

I am starting to shop around for my next (and hopefully last) road
bike.


There is no last bike :-)

--
bpo gallery at http://www4.tpgi.com.au/users/mvw1/bpo


Very "Matrix" of you.

  #9  
Old February 28th 05, 11:16 PM
Mike Jacoubowsky/Chain Reaction Bicycles
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Default

Are you looking at carbon and Ti from a weight perspective? My
philosophy is this - if you are concerned about weight, go get a
body-fat measurment taken. If you're a guy who is over 12% body fat,
then you have no excuse for buying a bike based on weight.


That is simply not true. Let's say you're a 200lb 6' person. Will the
difference between an 18lb bike and a 24lb one make the difference between
whether you can finish a ride or not? Probably not. Will the difference
between an 18lb bike and, say, a 21lb bike be noticeable when riding? In
most cases, yes. If you're standing on a hill, isolating yourself from the
weight of the bike underneath you, you can very easily notice a difference
between a bike that weighs a bit less than another. You're not just moving
that bike *up* the hill, but also side-to-side. It's not that you lose much
(if any?) energy as you move it one way then the other, but it most
definitely is a difference you can feel. The lighter bike will feel
livelier, and why that should be something ruled out of the equation... why
you'd think that somebody isn't worthy of something that feels better,
perhaps just different... I just don't get it. There's a lot more that goes
into purchasing a bike (or anything else for that matter) than just a desire
to have enough function to get by.

Do you *need* to have a computer that opens up your email and processes your
spam in 11.3 seconds instead of 15? How are those 4 seconds going to change
your day? They likely aren't, but somehow it changes your state of mind,
maybe. And maybe that's worth paying for, for some. And for others it
doesn't seem like a big deal that it takes 2 minutes to download and process
their spam on a slow analog line. They're perfectly happy with it. But is
somebody telling the person with the DSL line and the 3.2ghz processor and
the latest NVidia 6800+ graphics card that they're not worthy of it because
they're a lousy game player? Well, maybe they are, but it seems rude either
way.

--Mike Jacoubowsky
Chain Reaction Bicycles
www.ChainReaction.com
IMBA, BikesBelong, NBDA member

"Velo Psycho" wrote in message
oups.com...
Your LAST bike? Hah! Anyone contemplating Carbon or Ti is someone
with at least a mild bike addiction! It won't be your last bike. I
bought an Independent Fab Crown Jewel Ti.... and two months later I HAD
to have a Bianchi Pista. Then, I saw a lovely hand-made steel touring
frame that I had to have.... the stable grows and occasionally you sell
one off... but bull**** your wife, not us.

Ok... so... now that we admit that we have a problem, we can go
forward.

I have to echo Goose somewhat. Why is the choice between Carbon and
Ti? If you're looking for a great quality bike, steel is definitely
not to be ruled out. I've owned carbon, steel, ti, and aluminum, and
I've liked the ride of the steel bikes the best. I still kick myself
for selling my Waterford back in grad school. Today, I've got a
bianchi steel bike, a Gios, and an Independent Fab Ti Crown Jewel. The
IF is fantastic... and will last forever.... but the 10 year old
bianchi eros rides just as nice.

The ride difference is this - the IF seems to flex a lot - but never in
the wrong direction. I can hammer the pedals without tourqing the rear
triangle - which happened on a waterford RS-11. My waterford made from
853 steel never did that. The Gios Lite is a pretty inexpensive steel
frame, but rides wonderfully.

I'm not a fan of carbon. I don't like the ride quality of what I have
sampled. I personally don't even like the carbon fork on my IF. I
really preferred the steel fork on my Waterford (oh I miss her) and the
steel fork on my Gios. Yes, the carbon is more damping of vibration
and almost acts as a suspension fork - but I prefer steel.

Are you looking at carbon and Ti from a weight perspective? My
philosophy is this - if you are concerned about weight, go get a
body-fat measurment taken. If you're a guy who is over 12% body fat,
then you have no excuse for buying a bike based on weight.

If you're looking at your *last* bike, or if you can even say that
knowing that it isn't true... then I presume that nobody is sponsoring
you. Meaning again, weight should not be a concern at all. An extra
two pounds on your bike can be lost by spending an extra two thousand
dollars, or it can be lost from your gut by riding harder.
Conventional Wisdom, for what it's worth, is that it costs $1000 to
take a pound off of a bike. So, given that I have at least ten pounds
of extra flab on my body that I could stand to lose, I've got ten grand
worth of exercising to do before I start caring about weight. (This is
not meant to slam you nor anyone else - just to help put the weight
consideration in some perspective).

Now... if weight is off the table... lets look at durability. Ti will
last beyond the extinction of mankind. You'll never see rust on ti.
Steel, if cared for, will last longer than you will live. Both can
take an impact, be repaired, and give a great ride.

Carbon -- there are great comments above about the sketchiness of
carbon. I dont know how long a carbon frame will last.

A consideration that might seem shallow, but I think is totally
legitimate is the "bike porn" value of whatever decision you make.
Part of what I love about cycling is the beauty of the machine. I dont
think there is anything wrong with lusting after Ti, a sweet steel
frame, or even carbon. Hey, there is nothing wrong with riding OCLV
"because it is what Lance rides." Don't be a fashion slave... but for
bike porn value, I'd say that it is a toss-up.

Now... think about this too. You say this is your "last bike."
(snicker.... snort... laugh). If so, you want it to fit perfectly -
don't you? There are some carbon manufacturers who will build you a
custom frame. Jack Kane comes to mind. There are a LOT of ti and
steel manufacturers who will do the same thing. Spend some money and
get a custom frame.

Bottom line... if it were me and I could have one last bike for the
rest of my life, I would check out Independent Fab's ti or steel, or
Waterford's steel, and get them custom-built.

Have fun on your "last bike!" (just one last beer... just one last bet
at the track.... at least your addiction is a healthy one!)



  #10  
Old March 1st 05, 12:22 AM
Pat
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

The argument I have always gotten disgusted with is the one that starts:
"You have more money than you know what to do with if...." or "The only
person who would buy one of those would be someone with more money than
sense...."

It's always seemed a little holier than thou to me.

Pat in TX


 




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