Frame weight

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Solanog, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    Hi,
    Recently I've seen a lot of bicycles which claim a weight of less than 17lbs. Great looking bikes by the way and very expensive.
    Now my question is, how much does a frame should weight for making an 18lbs bike with 105 or Ultegra, using not too expensive wheelsets and other accesories? I've seen an Al frame which weighs a little less than 3.5 pounds, what would the final product weigh using this kind of frame?
     
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  2. kdelong

    kdelong Well-Known Member

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    It still depends upon the weight of the components. Not too epensive wheelsets can be pretty heavy, along with all the other "accesories" that you might add. If you use heavy components, you could end up with a 20+ lbs bike. If you use the lightest weight components available, you very well could end up with a bike that weighs less than 17 lbs. If you want to see what your final weight would be, add up the weights of all of the components that you want to use and add this to the weight of the frame. This information should be listed on the components and accesories manufacturers websites. You might also want to check on the Weight Weenies website. Unfortunately I do not have the address or I would insert a link. Just to remember to add about 1 lbs to your total to decrease your margin of error.
     
  3. jackchoo

    jackchoo New Member

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    18lbs is about 8.2kg

    my bike weighs in at a heavy 10kg, on full Ultegra (10Spd) components. Weight contribution mostly from the frame (steel, low end columbus Aelle) about 2.5kg and Shimano R540 wheels about 2.2kg, and my old skool Shimano 600 stem and seat post ain't that light either (maybe combined about 0.8kg).

    I figure if you could get a frame about 1.5kg, wheels (with tires!) < 2kg, lighter stems, seatpost, handlebar. You should be able to hit the 8-9kg range easily.

    If you are still 1-2kg short, try losing some weight :p
     
  4. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    That's easily doable. I had a Paramount OS (steel tubing) from 1992. It wasn't a particularly light frame; however, with Campy Record, Mavic Cosmos wheels, FSA cranks, and nothing else really special, it weighed 17.5 lbs. Using the groups you mentioned instead it would definitely be doable without any difficulties. I don't know how much more 105 weighs than Ultegra, but the Ultegra would get you there with room to spare.

    Wheels are where you'll find the biggest weight differences, and these days, it's way easy to have a builder build a set of wheels that weigh 1400 g or less for around $500-600.
     
  5. 531Aussie

    531Aussie Well-Known Member

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    That's 1589g, which is kinda heavy by weight weeny standards, even for aluminium; even for larger sizes. I have some 'old tech' 58cm all-alu frames which are between about 1480g and 1550g, depending on how much paint I put on them. :)

    I had a 56cm all-alu Cinelli Proxima, which was 1400g; my 58cm all-alu Cervelo Soloist is 1414g; and I have a cheap 57cm Monoc with carbon stays, which is 1350g.

    So, if I had to put a number on it (which, as the other guys have suggested, doesn't really cover the weight issue, coz the frame only makes up about 20% of a bike's weight), you'd wanna be starting with something under 1300g to 1500g. But, having said that, a 'heavy' frame may only be 200g more, which is obviously less than half a pound.

    Echoing what the other guys have said, you're gunna be struggling with cheap wheels. A cheap wheelset might be around 2100g (without skewers), while more expensive sets are under 1500g, so you could obviously have a 600g weight 'penalty' just their.

    Apart from the wheels and frame, the next component to look at would be the forks: a cheap fork with an alu steerer might be 550g to 600g, but a very expensive fork can be under 300g to 350g.

    Before you go 'raping' your bike of weight, be aware that very light stuff, especially forks and wheels, is often (sometimes?) :)) more flexy than heavier stuff, so there's usually a trade-off between weight and stiffness/durability.
     
  6. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    Thanks for all that great advice and knowledge.
    My Bicycle weighs around 9-10kg, I'm trying to improve a little, not that I need it but I will like too. So in my tight budget I'm in the process of deciding what to do first, begin improving on the old 105 by getting the 10 spd 105 or maybe Ultegra shifters chain and cassette, price difference isn't that big between the two but I'm not sure it's worth it. Improving on the frame, mine is a Alu (don't know the make, it is an italian frame, the same that a racing team race with some years ago but I have no idea of the weight, the fork is a carbon one with Al steerer. Or wheels, now I have 36 spokes 105 hubs with not to fancy rims (tubulars and another set for clinchers).

    So in my position where would you begin? I'm thinking about the frame but I'm not sure how much weight will I save with this, and I'm to lazy to take the bike apart just to weigh the frame and fork!

    BTW it will be easier, cheaper and healthier for me to lose 10lbs than make my bike loose 2!
     
  7. 531Aussie

    531Aussie Well-Known Member

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    eh, I don't reckon it's worth it, unless you wanna spend up on getting almost a whole new group-set and wheels. :) Maybe keep this as your 'wet day' bike, and save up for another one [​IMG]
     
  8. Peter@vecchios

    [email protected] New Member

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    Bing, bing, bing, we have a winner!!!
     
  9. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    I built my actual bike and the one before that one, I even built the wheels, got the hubs spokes and rims built them. This one is old but 100%, it has been well taken care of. Now I want to begin working on a new one but the funds are limited (married, kids, school, house etc) so if I decide begining on this project the bike will be built little by little.
    I really would like to own a fancy bike, eventhough I don't ride that much and am way out of shape, but a nice bike is a nice bike and building it with some effort makes it more attractive from my point of view.
     
  10. Camilo

    Camilo New Member

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    I'm with the gentleman from downunder. I think you'll spend a lot of money to even get to 19 lbs.

    Start out by actually weighing your current bike with and without pedals and cages, but no other accessories.

    Here's my actual, weighed, real life experience which will put your project in context.

    I have a CAAD 7 frame with the Slice Ultra carbon fork/alum steerer. Among aluminum frames, this is still considered a pretty high end, light weight set. The frame alone, according to weight weenies (I never was able to weigh it) is around 1.25 kg, or about 2.75 lbs. For the frame alone, this as a starting point is a full 3/4 or nearly 350 grams lighter than your starting point.

    My bike currently is:

    Full ultegra 9 speed triple group except w/ Dura Ace rear derailleur
    Generic handlebar tape, cables, etc.
    <1600 gram wheels (Reynolds Alta Race), with provided skewers.
    High end tires (Michelin Race2), extra light tubes, veloplugs
    Light weight alloy bar (Deda 215 shallow) - about as light as you can get alloy
    High end alloy stem (Currnenly a Syntace but have shorter, similar weight Ritchey WCS). Close to as light as is available
    Light weight saddle (E3 titanium)
    Decent Bontrager carbon seat post
    Pedals and bottle cages that are about as light as anything available

    I'm just mentioning this to give you an idea of a bike that starts with a frame that's quite a bit lighter than yours and has very nice, fairly lightweight parts - because I think that's what you're thinking of doing: upgrading but not getting crazy. Only a MAJOR investment into a top end groupset, super light wheels and a new frame and fork could take me to the "next level" in terms of weight and performance.

    My actual bike now weighs (actual weight, not theoretical) about 18.5 lbs (8.5 kg) ready to ride with pedals and cages, 1/2 pound less w/o pedals and cages (I only mention this because bike weight is often stated without pedals and cages). This is a triple, so consider 1/2 pound (liberal) weight penalty for that.

    I'm just mentioning this because with the frame you're starting with, assuming a double rather than a triple, I would be surprised if you could get to 19 lbs in that sort of cost context.

    Now, as you actually need parts, why not spend a little extra and get lighter and/or better parts. Believe me, that's what I've done. And over the course of time, I've taken about 3 pounds off my bike (most of which is in the wheels and - believe it or not, the tires!). I'm happy with it for sure. I'm not a faster or better rider in any measurable way, but when I ride, words that come to mind are "livelier", "quicker", "more stable", and most importantly because of the handlebars, stem and saddle "MORE COMFORTABLE".

    Just something to think about. The old cliche: "just buy a new bike" might apply to you.
     
  11. gemship

    gemship New Member

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    great post. I was going to say the same thing but not quite so in depth in regards to simply buying a new bike. I think a really light wheelset is a lot of money even if its custom built but at least you can always use it on a lighter frame if should you choose to replace that later. For about 2000$ there are a number of new bikes in the 18# range that have 16# potential with component upgrades,I guess it depends on how much you want to spend or how serious you want to get. I was talking to a pro level crit rider yesterday and he told me once you get to 16# the difference between that and 14# is nothing. There seems to be these different tiers of wieght range but a lighter wheelset will be something you can feel immediately even if the advantage doesn't make much difference according to the scale. I think anyway :confused:
     
  12. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    What about this wheelset?

    http://bike.shimano.com/publish/con...ad_wheels/product.-code-WH-RS20-S.-type-.html

    They are not that expensive and weight like 1.8kg (4lbs) is this too heavy or will they be a fine choice?
     
  13. gemship

    gemship New Member

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    Well I'm admittidly no expert but those wheels still seem roughly 200 or 300grams heavier than what I would look for in a lightwieght wheel. However on the upside I did a quick google search and found a ebay store in Hong Kong looking looking to see them for a buy it now price of 275.00 not including shipping cost. That seems cheap. For a built wheelset I think one can expect good quality from Shimano. I myself have a set of Shimano Durace wheels with a similar shaped hub body,scandium rim, and same spoke count front and rear. My wheelset wieghs in at a claimed 1560 grams so far with 400 miles they are holding true and I have hit a fair amount of potholes so I believe the durability is there.

    You should try taking your wheelset, remove the tires tubes and skewers and wiegh the wheels. That would give you a good idea of what you may lose in wieght. ;)
     
  14. gemship

    gemship New Member

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    I may get some flak for recommending Ritchey wcs protocols but just check out this ebay listing.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/RITCHEY-WCS-PROTOCOL-Road-Wheelset-Shimano_W0QQitemZ370077306921QQcmdZViewItem

    For a little over 400$ with shipping on ebay this seems like a light wheelset at a claimed 1510 grams. I realize you won't see anyone in the pro tours using them however I believe they may be hitting a good price point for the performance claims but they are prebuilt wheels so parts may be a difficulty should you need them or have them long enough.
     
  15. ibi-m

    ibi-m New Member

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    Around 4lb frame would be fine - go ahead with campi shifters, centaur is inexpensive these days (PBK site), combine with JTEK shiftmate, ultegra the rest, or 105, inexpensive XEROWHEELS (around 1550g) or Neuvation set, all under $400, important part is the carbon fork, Nashbar sells them cheap etc, guaranteed you'll get it down to the weight you want at very affordable price and not much work from your end on the assembly.
    I can't imagine you'd exceed 19lb with this setup, pedals included, my vintage Reynolds 531 size 58cm with mostly 105 is around 20lb fully equipped and I did not care about the weight, no serious climbs where I ride.

    BTW, very nice post by all...
     
  16. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    As I said I don't compete but I'm wanting a lighter better bike without it costing an arm or a leg, as the ones advertised on magazines :eek: . And I would like to built it little by little. I'm not a fan of carbon frames they are nice but are to expensive for what they are, to me a nice Al and carbon fork are more than enough. The checklist includes frame & Fork, better drive train and wheels.
    I will weight my wheels both tubular and clincher and see if there will be any improvement, by a reasonable price, with new wheels, if so that's what I'll get first. And I will be able to test them on my existing set up.

    Thanks for all the advice
     
  17. ibi-m

    ibi-m New Member

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    good luck, very nice approach. I don't know your price range (S+H might be a factor for you), but check this out

    http://pedalforce.com/online/index.php?cPath=101740




     
  18. Solanog

    Solanog New Member

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    Thanks for the link, very nice frames BTW. Shippping isn't a big issue since I have a shipping address in Miami and then things are sent to me in Costa Rica. I'm willing to spend around $450 on a frame, the issue here is that I can exonerate a shipment of less than $500 CIF more than that I would pay duties and import taxes which could be around 40%.
    I went to the LBS and they have a second hand Klein bike, can't remember the model. It's a white bike with an Al frame and carbon fork, 9sp 105 and bontrager wheels. They are asking around $1500, according to the guy at the shop that kind of frame would be around $1000.
     
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