Bike Weight redux

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Doug Taylor, Mar 21, 2006.

  1. Doug Taylor

    Doug Taylor Guest

    Came across this article on the Torelli website which I thought was
    interesting:

    "Bicycle Weight, the Benefits Quantified

    Everyone talks about bicycle weight. It consumes our discussions.
    Magazine reviews make it clear that if the very lightest parts are not
    chosen, if it is not as light as possible, the bicycle being examined
    is suspect. Light weight has become the sine qua non of a good
    bicycle. A light bicycle is a good bicycle, without any further
    discussion of its other merits or qualities.

    Can we step back for a moment?

    Let's get some numbers. Let us see if, as I believe, the handy
    availability of a single number has led people to make poor decisions
    in their choice of bicycle.

    First of all, weight is important. If it weren't, we would all be
    enjoying pleasant 75-mile rides on 42-pound Schwinn Varsity bikes. The
    road bikes offered today are a far cry from those mild-steel tanks.
    We're not talking about riding heavy bikes. I want to limit the
    discussion to modern, well-made, well equipped bikes.

    My personal favorite bike is a 55-centimeter all Columbus Foco Steel
    Torelli bike with a steel fork, generously chromed, built up with a
    Campagnolo Record 10-speed group. It weighs about 19 pounds. Beyond
    aluminum spoke nipples and double-butted spokes, there is nothing
    heroic about the equipment to make it lighter. The Squadra HDP saddle
    is heavy by the usual standards.

    UCI regulations limit a racing bike to about 15 pounds. What we are
    discussing, from a normal all-steel bike to a super-light, barely
    legal bike is about 4 pounds. This is what we're going crazy about, 4
    pounds. Maybe a bit more with a less expensive groups. In any case,
    given the usual rider-bike package of at least 180 pounds or more, the
    difference is obviously very small indeed.

    But how does this weight difference affect performance? Does removing
    these few pounds make the bike fly? Is a lighter bike the fountain of
    youth? The September 2003 Bicycling Magazine has a chart that makes it
    easy to quantify the performance gains from light weight. James C.
    Martin, Ph.D., assistant professor in the department of exercise and
    sport science at the University of Utah provided some interesting
    calculations that make the cost of weight very clear.

    He posited a 5 kilometer, 7% grade. That's a good, stiff climb. The
    legendary Stelvio climb averages 7.5%. He further assumed a rider who
    can kick out 250 watts. A 160 pound rider will take 19 minutes and 21
    seconds to get up the hill. Every 5 pounds added make the trip up the
    hill take 30 seconds longer.

    That means each added pound adds 6 seconds to the time it takes to get
    up this hill. That is only 6 seconds on a stiff, 20 minute climb.

    So, given our roughly 4-pound range from a full steel bike to a
    super-light carbon or aluminum bike, the time difference up this hill
    would be 24 seconds from best to worst.

    But, most weight conscious people aren't bringing their bikes down to
    15 pounds because down at that weight, the handling gets very sketchy.
    17 - 17.5 pounds is the normal range. The real discussion is about 1.5
    to 2 pounds.

    The performance advantage of a lighter bike is greatest when the hill
    is steepest. What happens as things flatten out? Then, as the speed of
    the bike increases, the resistance comes from the wind, tire rolling
    resistance, bearing drag, etc. Those 6 seconds/pound grow ever
    smaller.

    The variations in body weight, however, being so much greater, make
    large difference. If that same 160 pound-250 watt rider were to be 220
    pounds, he would come in 6 minutes, 10 seconds later.

    So what do we do with this information?

    There are two basic groups of riders to whom this is important.

    The first is the serious athlete. A few seconds advantage is not
    something he can give up. No matter what the quality of the ride of
    the bike in question, he must seek every attainable performance gain
    in his equipment or his body.

    Then there is the large body of dedicated cyclists who enjoy the sport
    at various levels, but do not compete in the higher racing categories.
    I think this is almost everyone reading this essay. For these riders,
    the choice of bike and equipment should involve a more complex,
    qualitative study. Weight is one consideration. But there are others.
    How does the bike feel? Is it stable? Does it fit? Does it have the
    snappy, clean, vibrant feel that should be the soul of a great bike?

    These basically sensuous questions that are beyond simple
    quantification. It's not a matter of a 73 degree head tube or 18
    pounds or 9 sprockets in the rear. It is the whole bike, taken as a
    whole that must be considered. One should not pick a bike as if he
    were one of the 7 blind men describing the elephant.

    The fact that these 1.5 - 2 pounds are so unimportant in choosing a
    bike should be looked upon a truly liberating. Now we can to back to
    judging bikes on their real merits.

    Before leaving this discussion, let's look at the most common
    "upgrade".

    A full carbon fork is considered an upgrade that will add greatly to
    the competitive advantage of the bike. A full carbon fork replacing a
    steel fork can take off a little less than a pound. Remember, that's
    our 6 seconds. Clearly, we have all been oversold on the carbon fork
    as the easy performance upgrade. There is some improvement, but it is
    minuscule. And it is not without its costs in quality of road feel.
    For more about carbon, please see my essay on materials.

    Or in other words, Scarpelli, you can't buy a bike light enough to
    keep up me with on a climb."

    http://www.torelli.com/tech/weight.shtml


    Bikes which in actual fact (weighed on your scale, not in a marketing
    add) get down to 15 -16 lb range (forget about UCI illegal and pie in
    the sky sub 15) are going to require a 2lb frame, which means
    expensive carbon or a Litespeed Ghisallo. Try finding one of those
    for less than $2500 or $3000, frame only. When you add your Campy
    Record Carbon and your Zipp wheels, etc., your 15 or 16 lb bike can't
    by definition can't cost you less than $4500 total - as a practical
    matter much more. A boatload of cash for that 1.5 lb. Somebody
    please do the cost/ benefit calculations.

    What really makes me laugh is ads like this one:

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm

    If it sounds too good to be true...
     
    Tags:


  2. Ron Ruff

    Ron Ruff Guest

    Doug Taylor wrote:
    > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    >
    > If it sounds too good to be true...


    15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals. Still a
    pretty good parts spec for $1295.

    If you swapped out for good quality lighter parts (Thompson
    Masterpiece, DA shifter and cassette, KMC chain, Pedal Force carbon
    frame) and add Speedplay Ti pedals, you'd be down to 15.5lbs for ~
    $2,000 total... but, I agree... what would be the point? In that
    neighborhood it is difficult to save weight for less than $1,000 per
    pound.
     
  3. Doug Taylor wrote:
    > Came across this article on the Torelli website which I thought was
    > interesting:
    >
    > "Bicycle Weight, the Benefits Quantified
    >
    > Everyone talks about bicycle weight. It consumes our discussions.
    > Magazine reviews make it clear that if the very lightest parts are not
    > chosen, if it is not as light as possible, the bicycle being examined
    > is suspect. Light weight has become the sine qua non of a good
    > bicycle. A light bicycle is a good bicycle, without any further
    > discussion of its other merits or qualities.
    >
    > Can we step back for a moment?
    >
    > Let's get some numbers. Let us see if, as I believe, the handy
    > availability of a single number has led people to make poor decisions
    > in their choice of bicycle.
    >
    > First of all, weight is important. If it weren't, we would all be
    > enjoying pleasant 75-mile rides on 42-pound Schwinn Varsity bikes. The
    > road bikes offered today are a far cry from those mild-steel tanks.
    > We're not talking about riding heavy bikes. I want to limit the
    > discussion to modern, well-made, well equipped bikes.
    >
    > My personal favorite bike is a 55-centimeter all Columbus Foco Steel
    > Torelli bike with a steel fork, generously chromed, built up with a
    > Campagnolo Record 10-speed group. It weighs about 19 pounds. Beyond
    > aluminum spoke nipples and double-butted spokes, there is nothing
    > heroic about the equipment to make it lighter. The Squadra HDP saddle
    > is heavy by the usual standards.
    >
    > UCI regulations limit a racing bike to about 15 pounds. What we are
    > discussing, from a normal all-steel bike to a super-light, barely
    > legal bike is about 4 pounds. This is what we're going crazy about, 4
    > pounds. Maybe a bit more with a less expensive groups. In any case,
    > given the usual rider-bike package of at least 180 pounds or more, the
    > difference is obviously very small indeed.
    >
    > But how does this weight difference affect performance? Does removing
    > these few pounds make the bike fly? Is a lighter bike the fountain of
    > youth? The September 2003 Bicycling Magazine has a chart that makes it
    > easy to quantify the performance gains from light weight. James C.
    > Martin, Ph.D., assistant professor in the department of exercise and
    > sport science at the University of Utah provided some interesting
    > calculations that make the cost of weight very clear.
    >
    > He posited a 5 kilometer, 7% grade. That's a good, stiff climb. The
    > legendary Stelvio climb averages 7.5%. He further assumed a rider who
    > can kick out 250 watts. A 160 pound rider will take 19 minutes and 21
    > seconds to get up the hill. Every 5 pounds added make the trip up the
    > hill take 30 seconds longer.
    >
    > That means each added pound adds 6 seconds to the time it takes to get
    > up this hill. That is only 6 seconds on a stiff, 20 minute climb.
    >
    > So, given our roughly 4-pound range from a full steel bike to a
    > super-light carbon or aluminum bike, the time difference up this hill
    > would be 24 seconds from best to worst.
    >
    > But, most weight conscious people aren't bringing their bikes down to
    > 15 pounds because down at that weight, the handling gets very sketchy.
    > 17 - 17.5 pounds is the normal range. The real discussion is about 1.5
    > to 2 pounds.
    >
    > The performance advantage of a lighter bike is greatest when the hill
    > is steepest. What happens as things flatten out? Then, as the speed of
    > the bike increases, the resistance comes from the wind, tire rolling
    > resistance, bearing drag, etc. Those 6 seconds/pound grow ever
    > smaller.
    >
    > The variations in body weight, however, being so much greater, make
    > large difference. If that same 160 pound-250 watt rider were to be 220
    > pounds, he would come in 6 minutes, 10 seconds later.
    >
    > So what do we do with this information?
    >
    > There are two basic groups of riders to whom this is important.
    >
    > The first is the serious athlete. A few seconds advantage is not
    > something he can give up. No matter what the quality of the ride of
    > the bike in question, he must seek every attainable performance gain
    > in his equipment or his body.
    >
    > Then there is the large body of dedicated cyclists who enjoy the sport
    > at various levels, but do not compete in the higher racing categories.
    > I think this is almost everyone reading this essay. For these riders,
    > the choice of bike and equipment should involve a more complex,
    > qualitative study. Weight is one consideration. But there are others.
    > How does the bike feel? Is it stable? Does it fit? Does it have the
    > snappy, clean, vibrant feel that should be the soul of a great bike?
    >
    > These basically sensuous questions that are beyond simple
    > quantification. It's not a matter of a 73 degree head tube or 18
    > pounds or 9 sprockets in the rear. It is the whole bike, taken as a
    > whole that must be considered. One should not pick a bike as if he
    > were one of the 7 blind men describing the elephant.
    >
    > The fact that these 1.5 - 2 pounds are so unimportant in choosing a
    > bike should be looked upon a truly liberating. Now we can to back to
    > judging bikes on their real merits.
    >
    > Before leaving this discussion, let's look at the most common
    > "upgrade".
    >
    > A full carbon fork is considered an upgrade that will add greatly to
    > the competitive advantage of the bike. A full carbon fork replacing a
    > steel fork can take off a little less than a pound. Remember, that's
    > our 6 seconds. Clearly, we have all been oversold on the carbon fork
    > as the easy performance upgrade. There is some improvement, but it is
    > minuscule. And it is not without its costs in quality of road feel.
    > For more about carbon, please see my essay on materials.
    >
    > Or in other words, Scarpelli, you can't buy a bike light enough to
    > keep up me with on a climb."
    >
    > http://www.torelli.com/tech/weight.shtml
    >
    >
    > Bikes which in actual fact (weighed on your scale, not in a marketing
    > add) get down to 15 -16 lb range (forget about UCI illegal and pie in
    > the sky sub 15) are going to require a 2lb frame, which means
    > expensive carbon or a Litespeed Ghisallo. Try finding one of those
    > for less than $2500 or $3000, frame only. When you add your Campy
    > Record Carbon and your Zipp wheels, etc., your 15 or 16 lb bike can't
    > by definition can't cost you less than $4500 total - as a practical
    > matter much more. A boatload of cash for that 1.5 lb. Somebody
    > please do the cost/ benefit calculations.
    >
    > What really makes me laugh is ads like this one:
    >
    > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    >
    > If it sounds too good to be true...


    The good Chairman has been in the world of 'reality, what a concept',
    for a long time. If only the marketeers and putz salepeople would take
    this to heart. Gadgetry and fluff has reached high levels of BS and
    blackmagic, with salespeople who regularly make promises they cannot
    keep.

    Maybe, just maybe if this tomfoolery would abate some, decent bicycles
    would be made...and sold...and RIDDEN, the object, afterall, of the
    bicycle.
     
  4. Doug Taylor wrote:
    > Came across this article on the Torelli website which I thought was
    > interesting:
    >
    > "Bicycle Weight, the Benefits Quantified
    >
    > Everyone talks about bicycle weight. It consumes our discussions.
    > Magazine reviews make it clear that if the very lightest parts are not
    > chosen, if it is not as light as possible, the bicycle being examined
    > is suspect. Light weight has become the sine qua non of a good
    > bicycle. A light bicycle is a good bicycle, without any further
    > discussion of its other merits or qualities.
    >
    > Can we step back for a moment?
    >
    > Let's get some numbers. Let us see if, as I believe, the handy
    > availability of a single number has led people to make poor decisions
    > in their choice of bicycle.
    >
    > First of all, weight is important. If it weren't, we would all be
    > enjoying pleasant 75-mile rides on 42-pound Schwinn Varsity bikes. The
    > road bikes offered today are a far cry from those mild-steel tanks.
    > We're not talking about riding heavy bikes. I want to limit the
    > discussion to modern, well-made, well equipped bikes.
    >
    > My personal favorite bike is a 55-centimeter all Columbus Foco Steel
    > Torelli bike with a steel fork, generously chromed, built up with a
    > Campagnolo Record 10-speed group. It weighs about 19 pounds. Beyond
    > aluminum spoke nipples and double-butted spokes, there is nothing
    > heroic about the equipment to make it lighter. The Squadra HDP saddle
    > is heavy by the usual standards.
    >
    > UCI regulations limit a racing bike to about 15 pounds. What we are
    > discussing, from a normal all-steel bike to a super-light, barely
    > legal bike is about 4 pounds. This is what we're going crazy about, 4
    > pounds. Maybe a bit more with a less expensive groups. In any case,
    > given the usual rider-bike package of at least 180 pounds or more, the
    > difference is obviously very small indeed.
    >
    > But how does this weight difference affect performance? Does removing
    > these few pounds make the bike fly? Is a lighter bike the fountain of
    > youth? The September 2003 Bicycling Magazine has a chart that makes it
    > easy to quantify the performance gains from light weight. James C.
    > Martin, Ph.D., assistant professor in the department of exercise and
    > sport science at the University of Utah provided some interesting
    > calculations that make the cost of weight very clear.
    >
    > He posited a 5 kilometer, 7% grade. That's a good, stiff climb. The
    > legendary Stelvio climb averages 7.5%. He further assumed a rider who
    > can kick out 250 watts. A 160 pound rider will take 19 minutes and 21
    > seconds to get up the hill. Every 5 pounds added make the trip up the
    > hill take 30 seconds longer.
    >
    > That means each added pound adds 6 seconds to the time it takes to get
    > up this hill. That is only 6 seconds on a stiff, 20 minute climb.
    >
    > So, given our roughly 4-pound range from a full steel bike to a
    > super-light carbon or aluminum bike, the time difference up this hill
    > would be 24 seconds from best to worst.
    >
    > But, most weight conscious people aren't bringing their bikes down to
    > 15 pounds because down at that weight, the handling gets very sketchy.
    > 17 - 17.5 pounds is the normal range. The real discussion is about 1.5
    > to 2 pounds.
    >
    > The performance advantage of a lighter bike is greatest when the hill
    > is steepest. What happens as things flatten out? Then, as the speed of
    > the bike increases, the resistance comes from the wind, tire rolling
    > resistance, bearing drag, etc. Those 6 seconds/pound grow ever
    > smaller.
    >
    > The variations in body weight, however, being so much greater, make
    > large difference. If that same 160 pound-250 watt rider were to be 220
    > pounds, he would come in 6 minutes, 10 seconds later.
    >
    > So what do we do with this information?
    >
    > There are two basic groups of riders to whom this is important.
    >
    > The first is the serious athlete. A few seconds advantage is not
    > something he can give up. No matter what the quality of the ride of
    > the bike in question, he must seek every attainable performance gain
    > in his equipment or his body.
    >
    > Then there is the large body of dedicated cyclists who enjoy the sport
    > at various levels, but do not compete in the higher racing categories.
    > I think this is almost everyone reading this essay. For these riders,
    > the choice of bike and equipment should involve a more complex,
    > qualitative study. Weight is one consideration. But there are others.
    > How does the bike feel? Is it stable? Does it fit? Does it have the
    > snappy, clean, vibrant feel that should be the soul of a great bike?
    >
    > These basically sensuous questions that are beyond simple
    > quantification. It's not a matter of a 73 degree head tube or 18
    > pounds or 9 sprockets in the rear. It is the whole bike, taken as a
    > whole that must be considered. One should not pick a bike as if he
    > were one of the 7 blind men describing the elephant.
    >
    > The fact that these 1.5 - 2 pounds are so unimportant in choosing a
    > bike should be looked upon a truly liberating. Now we can to back to
    > judging bikes on their real merits.
    >
    > Before leaving this discussion, let's look at the most common
    > "upgrade".
    >
    > A full carbon fork is considered an upgrade that will add greatly to
    > the competitive advantage of the bike. A full carbon fork replacing a
    > steel fork can take off a little less than a pound. Remember, that's
    > our 6 seconds. Clearly, we have all been oversold on the carbon fork
    > as the easy performance upgrade. There is some improvement, but it is
    > minuscule. And it is not without its costs in quality of road feel.
    > For more about carbon, please see my essay on materials.
    >
    > Or in other words, Scarpelli, you can't buy a bike light enough to
    > keep up me with on a climb."
    >
    > http://www.torelli.com/tech/weight.shtml
    >
    >
    > Bikes which in actual fact (weighed on your scale, not in a marketing
    > add) get down to 15 -16 lb range (forget about UCI illegal and pie in
    > the sky sub 15) are going to require a 2lb frame, which means
    > expensive carbon or a Litespeed Ghisallo. Try finding one of those
    > for less than $2500 or $3000, frame only. When you add your Campy
    > Record Carbon and your Zipp wheels, etc., your 15 or 16 lb bike can't
    > by definition can't cost you less than $4500 total - as a practical
    > matter much more. A boatload of cash for that 1.5 lb. Somebody
    > please do the cost/ benefit calculations.
    >


    Six seconds per pound (that's 453.6 grams, folks) going up a long,
    steep hill.......makes the whole "whatsitweigh?" mindset seem a bit
    silly, eh?


    Thanks for posting this info. A little counterpoint to all the
    mumbo-jumbo, black magic, hype, marketing drivel, and BS that currently
    dominates the bicycle market is most welcome.
     
  5. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Guest

    Amen.

    My brother-in-law recently purchased a Fuji for a good deal. The
    American Classic Sprint 350 wheels are really light, but they are
    already crumbling under his 220 lbs weight. Plucking the front spokes
    sounds like a 3-year-old playing the piano with his elbows.

    He's already ordered some parts for me to build him a set of 36H
    Deep-Vs. He has let go of the bike weight, and I'm proud of him for it.


    -Mike
     
  6. Doug Taylor

    Doug Taylor Guest

    On 21 Mar 2006 16:55:28 -0800, "Ron Ruff" <[email protected]>
    wrote:


    >15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    >of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    >in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals.


    You added up the "claimed weights." Do the same with your bike, then
    for $28.00, buy a scale, hang it in your shop, weigh your bike, read
    out the results, and then slap your forehead with your palm and say
    "doh!" :)

    http://saveonscales.com/product_jennings_ultrasport_30_fishing_scale.html
     
  7. Sandy

    Sandy Guest

    Dans le message de
    news:[email protected],
    Mike Reed <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
    > Amen.
    >
    > My brother-in-law recently purchased a Fuji for a good deal. The
    > American Classic Sprint 350 wheels are really light, but they are
    > already crumbling under his 220 lbs weight.


    Who was surprised ? He is around 40 pounds over the weight *limit* the
    manufacturer states, and it doesn't take an IQ of 175 to realize that a
    lower weight, just over half his weight, is that of the target user.

    If he also bought size small shorts, and complained about their splitting
    and being too constrictive, would that also fall into the category of
    manufacturing fault for you ?
    --
    Sandy

    The above is guaranteed 100% free of sarcasm,
    denigration, snotty remarks, indifference, platitudes, fuming demands that
    "you do the math", conceited visions of a better world on wheels according
    to [insert NAME here].
     
  8. Ron Ruff

    Ron Ruff Guest

    Doug Taylor wrote:
    > On 21 Mar 2006 16:55:28 -0800, "Ron Ruff" <[email protected]>
    > wrote:
    > >15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    > >of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    > >in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals.

    >
    > You added up the "claimed weights." Do the same with your bike, then
    > for $28.00, buy a scale, hang it in your shop, weigh your bike, read
    > out the results, and then slap your forehead with your palm and say
    > "doh!" :)


    Uh... no. Like I said, I added up the *actual* weights for the
    components that are on the bike. Weightweenies is a good source for
    this info. Some things like the fork and the seat are generic items, do
    I had to guess.
     
  9. Doug Taylor

    Doug Taylor Guest

    On 22 Mar 2006 01:53:31 -0800, "Ron Ruff" <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >
    >Uh... no. Like I said, I added up the *actual* weights for the
    >components that are on the bike. Weightweenies is a good source for
    >this info. Some things like the fork and the seat are generic items, do
    >I had to guess.


    The only real rest is to weigh the whole bike on a scale. You are
    delusional if you really believe that bike weighs anything less than
    18 lbs. NFW you can buy or build a bike that weighs 15 or 16 lbs for
    less than $4 k, more like $5 k. If you think so, prove it. I'll
    accept a photo of the bike on your scale...

    I have a scale; I build my own bikes, road and off-road, and I laugh
    my ass off when I read about full suspension mountain bikes that
    "weigh 21 lbs" or road bikes that "weigh 15 lbs," for consumer
    friendly prices. Those are weights that pros and rich people with
    unlimited budgets MAY achieve with a lot of effort.

    If you REALLY believe your "actual weight" claim, I've got a bridge in
    Brooklyn AND some ocean front property in Arizona for sale. Make me
    an offer :)
     
  10. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Guest

    Surprised?.

    He "recently purchased" (see OP) the bike (four weeks ago), and
    ordered wheel parts to replace the wheels only three weeks into his
    ownership experience. I told him two weeks before he bought the bike
    that the wheels weren't keepers for him. Nobody was surprised, and it's
    being corrected.

    The problem is that you can't buy a decent Ultegra-level stock bike
    with good wheels these days. He didn't push the shop for stronger
    wheels, so here we are.

    40 lbs over the limit? Where do you get a 180lb weight limit for AC
    S350? It's 200 lbs, and we knew that before he bought the bike. He's
    only 10% over the limit.
    http://www.amclassic.com/Wheels_Road.html

    My beef isn't with the wheels, it's with the people who spec bikes for
    weight rather than quality. A stronger set of wheels could be spec'd
    for le$$.

    -Mike
     
  11. Ron Ruff wrote:
    > Doug Taylor wrote:
    > > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    > >
    > > If it sounds too good to be true...

    >
    > 15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    > of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    > in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals. Still a
    > pretty good parts spec for $1295.
    >


    Kinda makes you wonder what OEM wholesale is on some of that stuff, eh?
    And how little it costs to make that aluminum frame.


    > If you swapped out for good quality lighter parts (Thompson
    > Masterpiece, DA shifter and cassette, KMC chain, Pedal Force carbon
    > frame) and add Speedplay Ti pedals, you'd be down to 15.5lbs for ~
    > $2,000 total... but, I agree... what would be the point? In that
    > neighborhood it is difficult to save weight for less than $1,000 per
    > pound.
     
  12. Mike Reed wrote:
    > Surprised?.
    >
    > He "recently purchased" (see OP) the bike (four weeks ago), and
    > ordered wheel parts to replace the wheels only three weeks into his
    > ownership experience. I told him two weeks before he bought the bike
    > that the wheels weren't keepers for him. Nobody was surprised, and it's
    > being corrected.
    >
    > The problem is that you can't buy a decent Ultegra-level stock bike
    > with good wheels these days. He didn't push the shop for stronger
    > wheels, so here we are.


    Ain't it the truth. Fancy low spoke wheels on the floor with an
    ignorant salesperson saying they will be just fine and dandy. 2 weeks
    later, the wheels are a mess and the salesperson AND owners blame the
    rider...so one more bike hangs in the garage and one more cyclist takes
    up tennis.
    >
    > 40 lbs over the limit? Where do you get a 180lb weight limit for AC
    > S350? It's 200 lbs, and we knew that before he bought the bike. He's
    > only 10% over the limit.
    > http://www.amclassic.com/Wheels_Road.html
    >
    > My beef isn't with the wheels, it's with the people who spec bikes for
    > weight rather than quality. A stronger set of wheels could be spec'd
    > for le$$.
    >
    > -Mike
     
  13. Ozark Bicycle wrote:
    > Doug Taylor wrote:
    > > Came across this article on the Torelli website which I thought was
    > > interesting:
    > >
    > > "Bicycle Weight, the Benefits Quantified
    > >
    > > Everyone talks about bicycle weight. It consumes our discussions.
    > > Magazine reviews make it clear that if the very lightest parts are not
    > > chosen, if it is not as light as possible, the bicycle being examined
    > > is suspect. Light weight has become the sine qua non of a good
    > > bicycle. A light bicycle is a good bicycle, without any further
    > > discussion of its other merits or qualities.
    > >
    > > Can we step back for a moment?
    > >
    > > Let's get some numbers. Let us see if, as I believe, the handy
    > > availability of a single number has led people to make poor decisions
    > > in their choice of bicycle.
    > >
    > > First of all, weight is important. If it weren't, we would all be
    > > enjoying pleasant 75-mile rides on 42-pound Schwinn Varsity bikes. The
    > > road bikes offered today are a far cry from those mild-steel tanks.
    > > We're not talking about riding heavy bikes. I want to limit the
    > > discussion to modern, well-made, well equipped bikes.
    > >
    > > My personal favorite bike is a 55-centimeter all Columbus Foco Steel
    > > Torelli bike with a steel fork, generously chromed, built up with a
    > > Campagnolo Record 10-speed group. It weighs about 19 pounds. Beyond
    > > aluminum spoke nipples and double-butted spokes, there is nothing
    > > heroic about the equipment to make it lighter. The Squadra HDP saddle
    > > is heavy by the usual standards.
    > >
    > > UCI regulations limit a racing bike to about 15 pounds. What we are
    > > discussing, from a normal all-steel bike to a super-light, barely
    > > legal bike is about 4 pounds. This is what we're going crazy about, 4
    > > pounds. Maybe a bit more with a less expensive groups. In any case,
    > > given the usual rider-bike package of at least 180 pounds or more, the
    > > difference is obviously very small indeed.
    > >
    > > But how does this weight difference affect performance? Does removing
    > > these few pounds make the bike fly? Is a lighter bike the fountain of
    > > youth? The September 2003 Bicycling Magazine has a chart that makes it
    > > easy to quantify the performance gains from light weight. James C.
    > > Martin, Ph.D., assistant professor in the department of exercise and
    > > sport science at the University of Utah provided some interesting
    > > calculations that make the cost of weight very clear.
    > >
    > > He posited a 5 kilometer, 7% grade. That's a good, stiff climb. The
    > > legendary Stelvio climb averages 7.5%. He further assumed a rider who
    > > can kick out 250 watts. A 160 pound rider will take 19 minutes and 21
    > > seconds to get up the hill. Every 5 pounds added make the trip up the
    > > hill take 30 seconds longer.
    > >
    > > That means each added pound adds 6 seconds to the time it takes to get
    > > up this hill. That is only 6 seconds on a stiff, 20 minute climb.
    > >
    > > So, given our roughly 4-pound range from a full steel bike to a
    > > super-light carbon or aluminum bike, the time difference up this hill
    > > would be 24 seconds from best to worst.
    > >
    > > But, most weight conscious people aren't bringing their bikes down to
    > > 15 pounds because down at that weight, the handling gets very sketchy.
    > > 17 - 17.5 pounds is the normal range. The real discussion is about 1.5
    > > to 2 pounds.
    > >
    > > The performance advantage of a lighter bike is greatest when the hill
    > > is steepest. What happens as things flatten out? Then, as the speed of
    > > the bike increases, the resistance comes from the wind, tire rolling
    > > resistance, bearing drag, etc. Those 6 seconds/pound grow ever
    > > smaller.
    > >
    > > The variations in body weight, however, being so much greater, make
    > > large difference. If that same 160 pound-250 watt rider were to be 220
    > > pounds, he would come in 6 minutes, 10 seconds later.
    > >
    > > So what do we do with this information?
    > >
    > > There are two basic groups of riders to whom this is important.
    > >
    > > The first is the serious athlete. A few seconds advantage is not
    > > something he can give up. No matter what the quality of the ride of
    > > the bike in question, he must seek every attainable performance gain
    > > in his equipment or his body.
    > >
    > > Then there is the large body of dedicated cyclists who enjoy the sport
    > > at various levels, but do not compete in the higher racing categories.
    > > I think this is almost everyone reading this essay. For these riders,
    > > the choice of bike and equipment should involve a more complex,
    > > qualitative study. Weight is one consideration. But there are others.
    > > How does the bike feel? Is it stable? Does it fit? Does it have the
    > > snappy, clean, vibrant feel that should be the soul of a great bike?
    > >
    > > These basically sensuous questions that are beyond simple
    > > quantification. It's not a matter of a 73 degree head tube or 18
    > > pounds or 9 sprockets in the rear. It is the whole bike, taken as a
    > > whole that must be considered. One should not pick a bike as if he
    > > were one of the 7 blind men describing the elephant.
    > >
    > > The fact that these 1.5 - 2 pounds are so unimportant in choosing a
    > > bike should be looked upon a truly liberating. Now we can to back to
    > > judging bikes on their real merits.
    > >
    > > Before leaving this discussion, let's look at the most common
    > > "upgrade".
    > >
    > > A full carbon fork is considered an upgrade that will add greatly to
    > > the competitive advantage of the bike. A full carbon fork replacing a
    > > steel fork can take off a little less than a pound. Remember, that's
    > > our 6 seconds. Clearly, we have all been oversold on the carbon fork
    > > as the easy performance upgrade. There is some improvement, but it is
    > > minuscule. And it is not without its costs in quality of road feel.
    > > For more about carbon, please see my essay on materials.
    > >
    > > Or in other words, Scarpelli, you can't buy a bike light enough to
    > > keep up me with on a climb."
    > >
    > > http://www.torelli.com/tech/weight.shtml
    > >
    > >
    > > Bikes which in actual fact (weighed on your scale, not in a marketing
    > > add) get down to 15 -16 lb range (forget about UCI illegal and pie in
    > > the sky sub 15) are going to require a 2lb frame, which means
    > > expensive carbon or a Litespeed Ghisallo. Try finding one of those
    > > for less than $2500 or $3000, frame only. When you add your Campy
    > > Record Carbon and your Zipp wheels, etc., your 15 or 16 lb bike can't
    > > by definition can't cost you less than $4500 total - as a practical
    > > matter much more. A boatload of cash for that 1.5 lb. Somebody
    > > please do the cost/ benefit calculations.
    > >

    >
    > Six seconds per pound (that's 453.6 grams, folks) going up a long,
    > steep hill.......makes the whole "whatsitweigh?" mindset seem a bit
    > silly, eh?
    >
    >
    > Thanks for posting this info. A little counterpoint to all the
    > mumbo-jumbo, black magic, hype, marketing drivel, and BS that currently
    > dominates the bicycle market is most welcome.


    It is but the bicycle industry, with Trek, Specilized and Giant+others
    at the lead, wonder why it's shrinking. Drivel at it's highest, and
    it's going to get smaller before the 'big boys' realize that they are
    the problem.
     
  14. RonSonic

    RonSonic Guest

    On 22 Mar 2006 06:05:56 -0800, "Ozark Bicycle"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    >Ron Ruff wrote:
    >> Doug Taylor wrote:
    >> > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    >> >
    >> > If it sounds too good to be true...

    >>
    >> 15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    >> of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    >> in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals. Still a
    >> pretty good parts spec for $1295.
    >>

    >
    >Kinda makes you wonder what OEM wholesale is on some of that stuff, eh?
    >And how little it costs to make that aluminum frame.


    Also makes pretty clear the difference between Shimano's prices for a group and
    for a container full.

    Ron
     
  15. RonSonic wrote:
    > On 22 Mar 2006 06:05:56 -0800, "Ozark Bicycle"
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >
    > >Ron Ruff wrote:
    > >> Doug Taylor wrote:
    > >> > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    > >> >
    > >> > If it sounds too good to be true...
    > >>
    > >> 15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    > >> of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    > >> in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals. Still a
    > >> pretty good parts spec for $1295.
    > >>

    > >
    > >Kinda makes you wonder what OEM wholesale is on some of that stuff, eh?
    > >And how little it costs to make that aluminum frame.

    >
    > Also makes pretty clear the difference between Shimano's prices for a group and
    > for a container full.
    >



    IMO, Shimano puts an artificially high "retail price" on Ultegra in
    order to make Ultegra equipped bikes look like a much "better deal"
    than, say, a Campy equipped bike. This is not a knock on the quality of
    Ultegra stuff (though I do have a few quibbles), but I doubt the cost
    of manufacture is very much higher than for 105. The pricing structure
    is a business strategy meant to give an advantage to their biggest and
    most important customers:the OEMs.
     
  16. Ozark Bicycle wrote:
    > RonSonic wrote:
    > > On 22 Mar 2006 06:05:56 -0800, "Ozark Bicycle"
    > > <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > > >
    > > >Ron Ruff wrote:
    > > >> Doug Taylor wrote:
    > > >> > http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/lechamp06_sl_pre.htm
    > > >> >
    > > >> > If it sounds too good to be true...
    > > >>
    > > >> 15.1lbs is likely an exaggeration... I added up all the actual weights
    > > >> of the components (including an actual weight for the frame of 3.0lbs
    > > >> in 55cm) and got about 16lbs... and that is without pedals. Still a
    > > >> pretty good parts spec for $1295.
    > > >>
    > > >
    > > >Kinda makes you wonder what OEM wholesale is on some of that stuff, eh?
    > > >And how little it costs to make that aluminum frame.

    > >
    > > Also makes pretty clear the difference between Shimano's prices for a group and
    > > for a container full.
    > >

    >
    >
    > IMO, Shimano puts an artificially high "retail price" on Ultegra in
    > order to make Ultegra equipped bikes look like a much "better deal"
    > than, say, a Campy equipped bike. This is not a knock on the quality of
    > Ultegra stuff (though I do have a few quibbles), but I doubt the cost
    > of manufacture is very much higher than for 105. The pricing structure
    > is a business strategy meant to give an advantage to their biggest and
    > most important customers:the OEMs.


    Of course, along with all their components. Aluminum and plastic is
    cheap and altho carbon and titanium is not, Campag prices are too high
    also. This is common in all 'vehicle' retail, cars, motorcycles, etc.
    OEM is shimano's specialty and it remains to be seen if Sram can
    compete with the numbers required in 2007. Campagnolo can't spell OEM,
    isn't really interested. I don't think they should be. They should be
    the thing of the higher end, specialty bicycles starting at the shop as
    frames, not from the factory. I think they should just can Mirage and
    Xenon, focus on Record, Chorus, Centaur with Veloce an add on. Porshce
    and Mercedes doesn't do entry level cars. Toyota is all about the
    Corolla. I think Campagnolo should stop trying to be mainstream and be
    as unique as the Rolex on the man or woman's wrist.

    As for pricing in general, i know it would tweak lots of distributors,
    but I would love to see these manufacturers go direct, like skis.
     
  17. Sandy

    Sandy Guest

    Dans le message de news:[email protected],
    Doug Taylor <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
    > On 22 Mar 2006 01:53:31 -0800, "Ron Ruff" <[email protected]>
    > wrote:
    >
    >>
    >> Uh... no. Like I said, I added up the *actual* weights for the
    >> components that are on the bike. Weightweenies is a good source for
    >> this info. Some things like the fork and the seat are generic items,
    >> do I had to guess.

    >
    > The only real rest is to weigh the whole bike on a scale. You are
    > delusional if you really believe that bike weighs anything less than
    > 18 lbs. NFW you can buy or build a bike that weighs 15 or 16 lbs for
    > less than $4 k, more like $5 k. If you think so, prove it. I'll
    > accept a photo of the bike on your scale...
    >
    > I have a scale; I build my own bikes, road and off-road, and I laugh
    > my ass off when I read about full suspension mountain bikes that
    > "weigh 21 lbs" or road bikes that "weigh 15 lbs," for consumer
    > friendly prices. Those are weights that pros and rich people with
    > unlimited budgets MAY achieve with a lot of effort.
    >
    > If you REALLY believe your "actual weight" claim, I've got a bridge in
    > Brooklyn AND some ocean front property in Arizona for sale. Make me
    > an offer :)


    Take a look at the topic "Nos montages" and figure out the answer. This is
    my local shop, bikes (some of them) belong to members of my club.

    http://udac78.free.fr/

    18 pounds = 8.1416kg

    You're welcome.
    --
    Bonne route !

    Sandy
    Verneuil-sur-Seine FR
     
  18. Sandy

    Sandy Guest

    Dans le message de
    news:[email protected],
    Mike Reed <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
    > Surprised?.
    >
    > 40 lbs over the limit? Where do you get a 180lb weight limit for AC
    > S350? It's 200 lbs, and we knew that before he bought the bike. He's
    > only 10% over the limit.
    > http://www.amclassic.com/Wheels_Road.html


    I am surprised. These same (I really AM presuming) wheels are sold in
    Europe with a notice of an 80kg limit. Anyway, it's not realisitc to buy
    things when at or over the limit. And, 10% over this limit is still _over_
    the limit, right ?

    > My beef isn't with the wheels, it's with the people who spec bikes for
    > weight rather than quality. A stronger set of wheels could be spec'd
    > for le$$.


    Given the unlikely prospect that the guy will drop 60 pounds in short order,
    that's correct.
    --
    Bonne route !

    Sandy
    Verneuil-sur-Seine FR
     
  19. G.T.

    G.T. Guest

    Sandy wrote:
    > Dans le message de
    > news:[email protected],
    > Mike Reed <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
    >
    >>Amen.
    >>
    >>My brother-in-law recently purchased a Fuji for a good deal. The
    >>American Classic Sprint 350 wheels are really light, but they are
    >>already crumbling under his 220 lbs weight.

    >
    >
    > Who was surprised ? He is around 40 pounds over the weight *limit* the
    > manufacturer states, and it doesn't take an IQ of 175 to realize that a
    > lower weight, just over half his weight, is that of the target user.
    >


    How many men are 110 lbs?

    Greg

    --
    "All my time I spent in heaven
    Revelries of dance and wine
    Waking to the sound of laughter
    Up I'd rise and kiss the sky" - The Mekons
     
  20. Mike Krueger

    Mike Krueger Guest

    Mike Reed wrote:
    > My brother-in-law recently purchased a Fuji for a good deal. The
    > American Classic Sprint 350 wheels are really light, but they are
    > already crumbling under his 220 lbs weight. Plucking the front spokes
    > sounds like a 3-year-old playing the piano with his elbows.
    >
    > He's already ordered some parts for me to build him a set of 36H
    > Deep-Vs. He has let go of the bike weight, and I'm proud of him for it.


    I recently met a new rider who's a few years younger than I am. The guy
    weighs 230, but he hopes to lose 40 lbs. He proudly showed me his new
    aluminum, compact-geometry road bike with some brand-I-never-heard-of
    aftermarket 18-spoke clincher wheelset. He says the wheels have held up
    so far, even after hitting a curb, so he's now convinced he could get
    *lighter* wheels. He kept insisting he needed to upgrade to *lighter*
    wheels, as if the 18-spoke wheels were holding him back somehow.
    Meanwhile, I'm riding along on my red label Mavic GP4's thinking, "Boy,
    am I a retro-grouch...these old wheels have served me well, and I still
    like them."
    The power of marketing is amazing. Unlike others, I always try to learn
    as much as I can about something before I buy into it.
     
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