Carbon vs. Aluminum?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by awest1982, Jan 26, 2006.

  1. awest1982

    awest1982 New Member

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    I am seriousy considering purchasing a mostly or all-carbon road bike (either a specialized or orbea). Please share your thoughts, good or bad, on carbon vs. aluminum road bikes...

    Thanks.
    Alex
     
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  2. patch70

    patch70 New Member

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    I am sure you will get other responses saying that the bike's fit and design are far more important than the frame material. This is true!

    Go and try the bikes and see which feels better for you with a decent test ride.

    That said, the Specialized & Orbea carbon bikes seem to be excellent choices; I'd probably go the Specialized. I ride a carbon bike (Bianchi) and love it. It would take something big to stop me getting another carbon bike next time.
     
  3. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Do a search. You'll find that the smart money is on test riding some bikes and picking the one that feels best. Choosing a frame based on frame material doesn't help you at all, since it is design, construction, and proper use of a given material that determine how frame performs.
     
  4. Insight Driver

    Insight Driver New Member

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    As you already have found, most folks will tell you, rightly, that it's all about the fit and ride charateristics, not the material it is made of. I have a full-custom carbon fiber bicycle set up as a commuter bike with fenders, lights, rack and rack trunk on it. The reason I chose carbon fiber is because it's sexy to me. I had always wanted a state-of-the art bicycle. The reason for full custom is for perfect fit for my riding style and personal charcteristics. Generally, the lighter bike gets more nods from people, but even that is not always true for some folks value stability over lightness since some very light bikes also have a geometry that make them feel twitchy at low speeds.

    What attracts me to carbon fiber is that it won't rust, is way strong and does not have a fatigue limit like aluminum does. It has bling factor for me. The most expensive bikes now are either titanium or carbon fiber. For any production bike it's most important that the ride characteristics and fit match you. My other bike is an aluminum bike that I've put over two thousand miles on without anything failing except the front wheel which was damged in a crash.
     
  5. Tech72

    Tech72 New Member

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    I realize it's not all carbon but seriously consider the Cannondale Six13 if you want pure speed and very reasonable comfort. I've ridden many bikes, both low-rent and high-end machines and can honestly say that the Six13 is in the top two for me. I currently own a steel Merckx, steel Gios, CAAD5 C'dale and a Ti Litespeed and am drooling over a Six13 after having one on loan for a few days.

    Just imagine......Six13 with Record 10, K-wings, Kysrium SLs......oooohhhhh.
     
  6. JTE83

    JTE83 Member

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    I have 2 carbon fiber bikes and 3 aluminum bikes and I don't notice a difference in the ride other than the fit of the bike. I don't notice any difference in vibration dampening, either.

    I just bought an 06 Raleigh Prestige with 05 Ritchey wheels and a Stronglight Pulsion Crank no BB for $1940 shipped! That's a great deal, and the bike is Ultegra 10 with a Dura Ace rear derailleur.
     
  7. Adam-from-SLO

    Adam-from-SLO New Member

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    I have only ridden Carbon(monocoque- which rides like a steel bike, and hand-layed Carbon fiber), Titanium( a 6/4 Ti. road bike, and a 3/2.5 oversized/butted seemless hardtail MTB), and my old Steel Bottechia road bike back in the day.

    Overall, I personally prefer Ti. ...... for its silkyness when rolling down the road, dampening vibrations , overall feel of the two bikes.

    THE ONLY Future road bikes that I'd consider owning are : A. a high end Steel frameset- that is no longer in production as of 2004 ( I dont want to give out the name.... as I'm hoping I can find my size on Ebay one day- Frame only, I already have the matching steel fork) , hopefully not heavily used - NOS would be awesome, but I'm gonna probably have to pay about $500-800.

    ... or B. a custom Seven , built to fit = $2500 . Either will have Campy 9spd.

    I'm leaning towards the Steel frameset... as its been almost 9 years since I've ridden Steel ........ and maybe in the next 1-2 years, I can find my ride ;) In the process, I will be selling my LOOK Monocoque Campy equiped bike.... more then likely by 2007 sometime.
     
  8. capwater

    capwater New Member

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    Al frame with carbon rear traingle is a popular combo and offers the best of both worlds. Orbea surely makes some high quality bikes, but don't get hung up on a decal. Many frames are made by the same manufacturer just painted differently for a specific retailer. B
     
  9. capwater

    capwater New Member

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    Al frame with carbon rear traingle is a popular combo and offers the best of both worlds. Orbea surely makes some high quality bikes, but don't get hung up on a decal. Many frames are made by the same manufacturer just painted differently for a specific retailer. B
     
  10. AMS

    AMS New Member

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  11. AMS

    AMS New Member

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  12. AMS

    AMS New Member

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  13. AMS

    AMS New Member

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  14. dm69

    dm69 New Member

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    Good on ya! Now I have to clean up my drool thats now all over the keyboard! GOSH! :p
     
  15. dm69

    dm69 New Member

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    Good on ya! Now I have to clean up my drool thats now all over the keyboard! GOSH! :p
     
  16. hd reynolds

    hd reynolds New Member

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    I have a TCR composite and a TCR Al. Same geometry, same size, same group - I just can't put a finger as to why I like the Al a tad better.
     
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