Clydesdales and carbon fiber-bad idea?

Discussion in 'Clydesdales 200lb / 90kg + riders' started by fatandslow, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. Rhino40

    Rhino40 New Member

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    I have to say this thread has helped me a lot. I'm a steady 215lbs and looking at a Trek Modone 3.1 A full CF frame for only $1800 not to shabby but I was worried that I was just too heavy for the bike. sounds like I will be OK. I wish I could credit my weight to being 6'5" or somehing but alas I'm just a chubby sub 6 footer. I have been in love with my Gary Fisher HiFi for the last couple of years but I have decided to enter the world of road riding so the advice I see in this forum is very helpful.
     


  2. tonyzackery

    tonyzackery Well-Known Member

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    Anonymous internet, know-it-all, tough guys with very poor form - don't think it can get any worse...get grip pal...try being a part of the solution instead of an OBVIOUSLY large component of the problem...
     
  3. m0b00st

    m0b00st New Member

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    Yet you had nothing to offer to the conversation at all besides showing up and being an "Anonymous internet, know-it-all, tough guy with very poor form", good job.
     
  4. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Care to share your scientific reasoning for why the failure mode and forces involved in those pictures would always result in the carbon frames being in better shape that an alumium frame would be? Failure has as much to do with design as it does the material. Ask Lance about broken chainstays when a whipper snapper like Iban Mayo rides over your bike (Luz Ardiden "the mussette incedent" 2003) - I've had big guys ride over me on a very weak Vitus 979 aluminum bike and not have a trashed frame.

    You missed the point completely as to why some classes of automobiles which race in "stock" classes go to a lighter wheel and tire, even for classes where the original wheel size (both width and diameter) must be retained. It was because mounting "non-street" tires, like R compound tires from Bridgestone, Hoosier and Kumho etc etc for competition use and then being stuck with having to get a second set of genuine factory wheels as delivered with the car would be, in most cases, prohibitavely expensive. The main advantage is not in acceleration and braking it's with the reduction of unsprung weight and it's effect in helping to keep the tires on the road.

    Stock classes are a misnomer anyway. Stock just refers to whatever is outlined in the factory service manual. Some "think" that stock means as delivered but the true seasoned competitor knows that "stock" means full factory service manual and TSB allowed cylinder overbore, heads shaved to minimum factory spec and the engine rebuilt with factory rods/pistons that are very similar in weight. Stock classes as notoriously difficult to keep track of all the model specific "advantages" and because of this they end up costing as much, if not more, than a class that is seemingly allows more modifications.

    That said, in many cases you'll reduce the weight more of the tire/wheel combo by shaving your racing tires (for car racing) to minimum allowable depth than moving from a factory alloy wheel to something expensive and uber light - and that gives the added benefit of less tread squirm and heat build up... but I digress. I'm trying not to get back into the wallet emptying hobby of auto racing.

    With regards to larger riders noticing more of a difference, I would argue otherwise. Generally, smaller guys are lighter guys -and being smaller means they tend to ride smaller frames with less tubing to flex. With an aluminium bike, where models tend to be made with the same tubeset, the small frames with be more rigid. With carbon you can apply different layups of the composite material based upon frame size or intended use. True, you could use a different aluminium tube in different frame sizes but I don't know of any mass produced frames that do this. If there are, I'd like to know about it. As a percentage of overall bike/rider weight, the smaller rider would see a larger percentage difference between the two frames. You also have the issue of better vibration damping with carbon, which is something l notice more than stiffness on my carbon bike when compared to the carbon/aluminum bike I train on.
     
  5. ax25nut

    ax25nut Member

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    Wow, gang!! I gotta' say this is some ride! First-class entertainment all the way! The endless opinions/bickering over the virtues (or lack thereof) of a carbon frame under a 200+ lb rider, whether a bike can be made for such a rider, etc.... My opinion for what it's worth (and that's ALL it is) is ride what appeals to you, regardless of material, price, or brand name. Period. All else is generally in the mind of the rider. Yes, that is a valid OPINION, not based on scientific fact or fantasy. My reasoning follows:

    Back in the late 70's or early 1980 I got the very cheapest 25" frame bike I could to ride around town on. It was a $140 Concord racing frame with no bells or whistles to speak of, barely a step above the department store bikes, but it fit my own body size, and I had a BLAST riding it every day. Until I saw this Ross Gran Tour at twice the price, which I thought was extremely expensive. I bought it in 1984, and still ride it. I weighed 170 when it was purchased, and now weigh 230 or thereabouts. It's still a great ride, better than the Giant Boulder I got for about $200 in '95, and still better than the very light Bike-E recumbent I got last year, which I'll likely end up riding on my summer tours this year. I've never purchased a carbon bike, and likely never will. I've watched the intrusion of carbon, boron, graphite, and kevlar into everything from fishing poles to bicycles, and still have little faith in it....not even enough to test ride it. Nothing scientific here, just an aversion to paying a ton of cash for something that does no more than the cheaper version will do.

    That is not to say carbon hasn't come of age. It has, and spectacularly so! However, why would I want to spend that much money for something when I can spend one-tenth of that amount and do the same thing? The point is that carbon, like aluminum and various steels, all have their up/downsides and proponents/detractors. Ride what you like. Buy what you can afford, but only if YOU can see or feel the benefit of doing so. Go try them all out if you wish and notice the differences, if you can actually feel any difference in them. Or not, but either way....ride what YOU like. I still love and prefer my chrome-moly lugged frame Ross Gran Tour, but these days leaning on the handlebars makes my elbows and shoulder joints feel like someone shot a nail into them, so I'll ride the recumbent when I can't ride the others. Either way, I'll still ride.

    I don't like the fact that the Bike-E is all aluminum, but I'll still ride it because it doesn't hurt my elbows and shoulder joints to do so, and since it's got my now-ample rump and gut so close to the pavement, any crash I make will hurt far less than any crash I make on my favorite Ross road bike. I know this because I made the (stupid and deliberate) mistake of riding through the one tiny wet spot on a paved bike path (one foot wide) that had wet leaves in it. My ample (well-padded) right rump cheek hit the pavement and slid faster than a politician can break a campaign promise! And then I got up and thanked my Creator for my (up to that point) not-so-favored aluminum Bike-E that kept my rump so close to the pavement that said landing couldn't hurt me, apart from making me look comically inept. And I kept riding.

    The point of all this? Ride what you like, but ride. And did I mention....ride some more. I never did concern myself with the latest whiz-bang techno-advancements in bikes or anything else, preferring what was cheapest and still capable of doing the job, which is riding. The other stuff is negligible, even insignificant. Carbon? Steel? Aluminum? Titanium? Bleagh....all secondary to riding. Get what you like and can afford. Now go forth and RIDE. And stay out of the wet leaves. They cause too much excitement, regardless of what type frame you're on....Mike
     
  6. Sleeping menace

    Sleeping menace New Member

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    Ok.. 'Dimwit'.. 'ass hat' and the rest of you.. Everyone put their little pee pee's away.. and step back from this a bit. *by the way, kudos to the originator of the 'ass hat' name.. I'd not heard that..very good*
    There's plenty of room for a variety of opinions, though I have to admit, some are much more logical in my view than others.

    At the heart of it all, cycling suffers from the same things which plague any high dollar value sport .. it's called 'Bullsh*t'.. and the manufacturers spend big money to fill every possible inch of advertising with it.

    A few points:
    1st: regarding the broken carbon pics.. Care to guess how many aluminum frames have broken? or steel ones for that matter? == fact of life.. all frames break under the right circumstances. Unless you have a horrible frame design which has been poorly made, be it alu, steel or CF, you can expect it to last equally long under decent circumstances. I know of CF bikes (as with alu and steel) with many thousands of km's on them, ridden by beefy riders on typically poor condition roads. The vast majority of the JRA incidents are complete BS.. Were any brand to actually release a production run of frames which came undone whilst just being ridden normally, the news would travel fast and we'd all know.

    2nd: thinking that buying an alu frame from a name-brand manufacturer will prevent you having a catastrophic failure is just silly. I was idiot enough to spend a LOT of money on a new Specialized Demo 9 at the time, when they came out.. broke it in 2 weeks just at the BB.. was replaced.. only for a 2nd one to do nearly the same thing, this time breaking the downtube/bb junction. The point? The frame was a complete piece of sh*t and wasn't up to the intended purpose. After the 2nd one broke, Spec made me eat it BTW, refusing to warranty another one. That was the last penny Spec will EVER see of my money.

    3rd: Yes,.. a lighter weight bike, with lighter wheels will feel more lively, responsive, and enjoyable under a heavier rider too. Though perhaps to less of a degree than to a rider of 58kg (like one of my riding buddies), but I've been able to feel a very real difference in my TT bike by putting it on a diet, and I'm 115kg. Even being the size I am, when I hop on a friends bike, which is much closer to 30lbs than not, it feels a bit of a lead sled under me. My TT bike is no feather, being 19.3 lbs, but it's a night and day feeling compared to his 27 lbs.

    4th: *sorry, too lazy to look back to see who actually wrote it* but the poster who indicated that most of the CF failures would have also resulted in the frame being left unusable had the bike been alu is correct. CF frames are actually very tough, and quite forgiving of a lot. By the time a high quality CF frame fails, an alu one would have been badly damaged anyway.

    5th: *doing my best Rodney King impersonation* .. Can't we all just get along?

    ........................
    http://anotherdooratthe.endoftheinternet.org

    Cycle related blog entries, including a few 5 minute reviews:
    http://anotherdooratthe.endoftheinternet.org/category/cycling/
     
  7. Paul Schmidt

    Paul Schmidt New Member

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    There are some interesting points when it comes to frame materials, when it comes to ride, you can design a frame to be as compliant or as stiff as you want, by varying the frame design, the smaller the diameter and thicker the tubes, the more compliant it will be, the larger the diameter and thinner the tube, the stiffer it will be. The only time it really becomes an issue, is that AL generally doesn't like to flex, so a compliant AL frame will probably last a shorter number of miles then a very stiff one. What tends to be forgotten in all this is that ALL bicycles have air ride suspension, it's called the tires. The bicycle industry loves the 23mm tire at 8+ bar, because it means the tires are so hard that there is no air cushion left in them, this way they can give you two options, the $750 aluminium bicycle which rides rough as h**l or the $3,000 plastic one which is more compliant and rides smoother. If you take an AL frame and make it to accommodate say a 32mm tire at 6bar the wider tire at lower pressure will ride much nicer, have good rolling resistance and still hold a heavy load. Except now the rider can get a nice ride out of a much cheaper bicycle, which has lower profit per unit for the manufacturer. For a long time it was thought that rolling resistance was related to contact patch size, in the last few years, it's been determined that it's not, rolling resistance is related to the amount of deformation of the tire as it goes around, if it squishes flat it will have high rolling resistance, if it squishes just a little, it will not. This means if you take a 23mm tire and a 32mm tire that have the same pressure, the 32mm tire will actually have a lower rolling resistance for the same load, if the load is enough that at that pressure the load deforms the tire. The great ride from vintage steel is as much from the wide lower pressure 1 1/4" tires (35.5mm) as it is from the frame material itself.
     
  8. ax25nut

    ax25nut Member

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    Paul Schmidt wrote, in part:
    "The great ride from vintage steel is as much from the wide lower pressure 1 1/4" tires (35.5mm) as it is from the frame material itself."


    My amused response:
    You call 1-1/4" tires WIDE? And here I thought all these years that was a narrow tire. At least it still is compared to mountain bike tires. I think until recently the only things narrower than that were sew-ups, at least as far as I knew. I admit....I haven't kept up with developments over the last 20 years, as I was quite content with my Gran Tour and it's "wide" tires.

    While cruising area bike shops in the past couple years I've noticed that all bikes that are not mountain or old-style cruisers were equipped with these 700c tires on skinny rims. They all appear to be made for racing only. I've also noticed that about 10% of riders are actually competing in racing or technical mountain biking, while the overwhelming majority are still cruising around town joy-riding and touring, whether for an hour at a time, or for days/weeks at a time.

    The things you learn on a bike forum. Amazing.
     
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