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told to avoid aluminum frames

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
A knowlegable co-worker of mine has told me to avoid aluminum frames. He said that I should look for a Reynolds 853 frame. I am 6ft 225lb and ride on group rides mostly on weekends. He claims that the aluminum frames are a very harsh ride compared to steel.

I am looking at the Fuji Robauix Pro which has the Reynolds 853 frame and 105 components. Any opinions on this bike.

I have no intentions to race. Just weekend rides 20-50 miles, an occasional metric century or some day in the distant future a real century. I like riding hills and my old 12 speed isn't helping me get up the steep ones.
post #2 of 37

Re: told to avoid aluminum frames

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbooffa
A knowlegable co-worker of mine has told me to avoid aluminum frames. He said that I should look for a Reynolds 853 frame. I am 6ft 225lb and ride on group rides mostly on weekends. He claims that the aluminum frames are a very harsh ride compared to steel.

I am looking at the Fuji Robauix Pro which has the Reynolds 853 frame and 105 components. Any opinions on this bike.

I have no intentions to race. Just weekend rides 20-50 miles, an occasional metric century or some day in the distant future a real century. I like riding hills and my old 12 speed isn't helping me get up the steep ones.
853 is great stuff, but so are lots of materials, including aluminum
post #3 of 37
Wide-sweeping generalisations of bikes based solely on material of manufacture are, how you say, a bunch of hooey

At a heavier weight, if anything you'll appreciate the stiffness that's typical of aluminium frames built with big tubing...

From a comfort angle, I've done many metric centuries (and a couple of real ones) on my Cannondale CAAD5 framed bike and have never felt beaten up by it. The only soreness I had was the tired muscles and the saddle not being quite right for me.

For what it's worth I'm 6' and 85kg/185lb, but was closer to 92-95kg last Spring when I did most of those longer rides.
post #4 of 37
The whole business about what materials produce what kind of ride is probably rather overemphasised. Unfortunately, a short test-ride won't give you the kind of insight you need to decide which frames and forks "feel" best for you, so if I were you I'd worry more about finding a bike which has the right geometry for you, the right components, good finishing kit and wheels that will take your weight (not that you're particularly heavy, but I think that many people on here will confirm that you shouldn't go for anything with Shimano R535 wheels, for example).

Forming your own opinion about frame materials (and things like carbon forks and seatposts) is probably only something you can do by owning a couple of bikes made of different things and riding them a lot. So don't let it bug you too much.
post #5 of 37

Re: told to avoid aluminum frames

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbooffa
A knowlegable co-worker of mine has told me to avoid aluminum frames. He said that I should look for a Reynolds 853 frame. I am 6ft 225lb and ride on group rides mostly on weekends. He claims that the aluminum frames are a very harsh ride compared to steel.

I am looking at the Fuji Robauix Pro which has the Reynolds 853 frame and 105 components. Any opinions on this bike.

I have no intentions to race. Just weekend rides 20-50 miles, an occasional metric century or some day in the distant future a real century. I like riding hills and my old 12 speed isn't helping me get up the steep ones.
853 is way overrated. For a nice ride try 531. Fittness and dragging around no excess poundage works better for getting up hills than a new frame.
post #6 of 37
I´ve had alu frames that beat the crap out of me (Principia) and alu frames that felt too soft almost like steel (Pinarello). When I write too soft i mean in responsiveness needed when racing. So that is not an issue for you. Steel is a good choice for what you describe and so are several aluminium, carbon, titanium and even magnesium frames. You´re a big guy make sure you get wheels that can take a beating and stay away from lightweight frames and high end components and buy a frame with at least a 5 year warranty and you should be set for endless hours of fun. The bike you mention sounds like a good choice actually. Make sure you get a proffessional bikefitting before you buy.
post #7 of 37
Frame material is a marginal factor at best. My aluminum Cervelo rides nearly as smoothly as my carbon Colnago...
post #8 of 37
853 is overrated,give it a rest. That Fuji Pro is a nice bike,if you can get it you will enjoy it.
post #9 of 37

Re: told to avoid aluminum frames

Quote:
Originally posted by jimbooffa
A knowlegable co-worker of mine has told me to avoid aluminum frames. He said that I should look for a Reynolds 853 frame. I am 6ft 225lb and ride on group rides mostly on weekends. He claims that the aluminum frames are a very harsh ride compared to steel.

I am looking at the Fuji Robauix Pro which has the Reynolds 853 frame and 105 components. Any opinions on this bike.

I have no intentions to race. Just weekend rides 20-50 miles, an occasional metric century or some day in the distant future a real century. I like riding hills and my old 12 speed isn't helping me get up the steep ones.
jimboofa,

I rode the 2003 plain fuji robauix alumn and that was a nice bike too. I am not astute enough about the subject to dish out recomendations but I can tell ya that at 240lbs, I find my 853 ride to be velvet smooth....

boudreaux, c'mon man now I'm hurt..When I was shopping for a ride you gave the LeMond BA with 853 favorable reviews...Say it ain't so.....
post #10 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by shokhead12
853 is overrated,give it a rest. That Fuji Pro is a nice bike,if you can get it you will enjoy it.
There are alot of 853 butting configurations,and and just saying 853 is great is just hooey.In some cases you are paying more for less (actually more weight to drag around).
post #11 of 37
Shokhead's right in suggesting that the 853 Fuji Pro is a nice bike, and that it will probably ride great and serve you well for years.

But the remaining consensus here is dead-on as well -- between aluminum, steel, titanium, and carbon, you've got four materials that have been utilized like mad, proven, and as far as the average rider is concerned, nearly perfected. If a given bike of any material stinks, it's because the manufacturer either selected a truly substandard grade of tubing, or designed the frame poorly, or assembled it poorly, or all three.

That said -- enjoy your Fuji!
post #12 of 37

Re: Re: told to avoid aluminum frames

Quote:
Originally posted by zapper


boudreaux, c'mon man now I'm hurt..When I was shopping for a ride you gave the LeMond BA with 853 favorable reviews...Say it ain't so.....
Lemond does a better job. It's just the sweeping generalizations that twist the screws the wrong way.
post #13 of 37

Re: Re: Re: told to avoid aluminum frames

Quote:
Originally posted by boudreaux
Lemond does a better job. It's just the sweeping generalizations that twist the screws the wrong way.
Alrighty then, sounds reasonable. I feel better now as I am stoked with the decision to buy the BA, Thanks again Boudreaux....I must say however from a novice's perspective the 2003 Roubaix I rode with alum.. was also a nice ride. Never rode their steel version though...
post #14 of 37
Al. does not have the memory of any other frame material. What little life it has when new is soon lost. Metal fatigue is the culprit. Various alloys of Al. do better than others but, for the most part, are only available in high end bikes. If you're willing to pay that kind of money than get a Ti. or C. bike. Al. has its uses, even for bicycles, but be aware of it's weakness before you buy.
post #15 of 37
Quote:
Originally posted by sea
Al. does not have the memory of any other frame material. What little life it has when new is soon lost. Metal fatigue is the culprit. Various alloys of Al. do better than others but, for the most part, are only available in high end bikes. If you're willing to pay that kind of money than get a Ti. or C. bike. Al. has its uses, even for bicycles, but be aware of it's weakness before you buy.
Now, there is a barge load of sweeping generalizations,well laced with hooey.
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