Opinions on aluminum frames?

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Archer, Mar 13, 2003.

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  1. Buck

    Buck Guest

    "Mark Hickey" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...

    <snip>

    > It's there only in the marketer's head. Bicycle Guide magazine once did an article that shot holes
    > in the "tuning the tubes" theory. They had identical bikes built from every set of pipes made by
    > Columbus (IIRC). Seven identically equipped, sized and built bikes. Identical paint.
    >
    > NO ONE COULD TELL WHICH WAS WHICH. All those magic properties that the authors of the bike review
    > articles normally gushed about vaporized in a puff of smoke. The same guys who would go on about
    > the amazing improvement in handling that resulted from changing a SL to an SLX seat tube suddenly
    > couldn't distinguish between bikes with much, much larger differences in tubing.
    >
    > In fact, when they tallied the results, the bike with the highest overall rating was one built
    > with the cheapest, heaviest tubes.

    Any idea what issue or even what year this might have been? I'd love to find a copy of that article.
    I could scan it and post the article here any time this issue comes up.

    Even better, since you are a manufacturer, how about building up a trio of bikes for someone to
    test? One Ti, one Al, one steel, all with matching geometries and components. Get one of our more
    competent participants (hey Jobst, you reading this?) to run the blind test.

    I understand if you don't want to do this. Proving that frame materials make no difference in ride
    quality might have a negative impact on your business....

    :)

    -Buck
     


  2. Frank Miles

    Frank Miles Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Matt O'Toole <[email protected]> wrote:

    >All normal bicycle frames are completely stiff in the vertical direction, no matter what they're
    >made of. The flex in the saddle and tires is many times greater than the miniscule amount of flex
    >in the frame. There's an article in the FAQ which explains this further:
    >
    > http://draco.acs.uci.edu/rbfaq/FAQ/8e.2.html

    This is a great A. One minor question (I tried e-mailing the author, it bounced) -- how was the bike
    clamped/held when the forces were applied? Presumably the deformations were all measured with
    respect to the clamp.

    TIA!

    -frank
    --
     
  3. Bluto

    Bluto Guest

    Mark Hickey <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Unless the frame is a "soft tail" design, there's NO way you can see flex in the rear triangle. If
    > you did design a frame with seatstays spindly enough to visibly flex under normal loads, it would
    > be nearly impossible to ride (don't even think about sprinting or climbing on it!).

    There is one place I have observed small but visible displacement in the rear triangle (though not
    in the stays.) When I have a long, long seatpost stuck out of a frame, and I weight the saddle while
    sighting down the seat tube, I can see what I believe is a small amount of bowing in the seat tube.
    It's a lot less than that in the seat post, but it's detectable.

    That said, I don't expect that it would have any detectable overall effect if the seat tube were
    made stiff enough so as not to flex in this way.

    > >Seats and rails are the same
    >
    > The 2 degree difference in seat tube angle means that the saddle was cantilevered 2cm further back
    > on the steeper seat tube bike. That can have a dramatic effect on ride qualities (and is one
    > reason I use a steeper seat tube on my 'cross bikes).

    Yes, 2 degrees is a huge difference when the total divergence from vertical is only 16-18 degrees.
    It usually makes a difference in saddle location WRT rear contact patch location, which has a big
    effect on road feel. Even when saddle position is fixed relative to the rear contact patch, there is
    the variation in saddle rail extension as you have noted.

    Chalo Colina
     
  4. Jkpoulos7

    Jkpoulos7 Guest

    >I know Aluminum frames have had a reputation (deserved or not) of being stiff, and I'm wondering if
    >that's still true, with the different alloys they use now.

    It's true as ever. Ride any aluminum frame then ride a quality steel frame and there is no doubt
    you'll feel the difference. Jamis, Lemond, and Fuji have steel frames at a reasonable cost.
     
  5. B. Sanders

    B. Sanders Guest

    "Peter Cole" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > "Mike S." <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > >
    > > I read a quote the other day that I'm going to have to paraphrase
    because I
    > > didn't write it down: in theory, there is no difference between theory
    and
    > > practice. In practice there is.
    > >
    > > Could be that the engineers are looking at the wrong things. Could be a
    lot
    > > of things, from faulty assumptions, to bad test criteria, I don't know.
    I
    > > do know that there are differences between bikes, no matter what anyone tries to tell me. They
    > > may be subtle, hard to quantify, but they're
    there.
    >
    > It's not that complicated, bicycles are simple devices, the science/engineering is well
    > understood.

    Apparently not, since we seem to have such vociferous disagreement for which the experts cannot
    account adequately.

    > A poster claimed his *wheels* were more comfortable. The simplest test will show there's no
    > compliance in
    wheels.
    > You guys just have over-active imaginations and/or are vulnerable to the powers of suggestion, AKA
    > gullible.

    You're arrogant and presumptuous. I, for one, have absolutely no concern for brand or price, or any
    other factor that could potentially "taint" one's viewpoint in any way that could be tantamount to
    gullibility. If I have no care for brands, recommendations or any other evaluation but my own, then
    pray tell, how can that be called gullibility?

    Simple: It can't. The people here claiming that they can feel differences in wheels, seatposts,
    handlebars and frames may not be engineers; but they do have sensitive instrumentation that they use
    to detect fine differences in bikes: Their own bodies. Humans are finely-honed instruments, whose
    sensory abilities are boggling in their precision.

    It really doesn't matter what arrogant engineers think. It doesn't matter what the magazines print,
    or what the 16-yr-old wrench at the bike shop thinks. It doesn't matter how much it costs, how light
    it is, or what it's made of. There *are* differences in frames, wheels, cranks, seatposts, saddles,
    and most other bike components. Are they huge differences? Perhaps not. Are they detectable? Quite
    definitely.

    I'm very tired of having arrogant engineers flash their credentials and then tell me I can't
    possibly be noticing that which I have quite definitely noticed, time and time again for many years.
    They are simply wrong.

    I'd be glad to partake in a double blind study, if someone wants to put it together. Bring it on.

    -Barry
     
  6. B. Sanders

    B. Sanders Guest

    "Jkpoulos7" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > >I know Aluminum frames have had a reputation (deserved or not) of being stiff, and I'm wondering
    > >if that's still true, with the different alloys they use now.
    >
    > It's true as ever. Ride any aluminum frame then ride a quality steel frame
    and
    > there is no doubt you'll feel the difference. Jamis, Lemond, and Fuji
    have
    > steel frames at a reasonable cost.

    Interesting also is the fact that custom framebuilders still have no shortage of customers willing
    to pony-up $1000 - $2000+ for a handmade steel frame. Since this is more than the cost of many Ti
    frames, I have to wonder: If Ti and Aluminum are superior, why would anybody want a steel frame?

    I'm having a beautiful Soulcraft Royale custom road frameset built as I write this. It will fit in
    my stable next to my WTB 6/4 Ti hardtail, my Klein Attitude (aluminum) hardtail, my aluminum
    disc-equipped Van Dessel Super Fly "all 'rounder" and assorted other bikes. I expect the Soulcraft
    to live up to its reputation (and Salsa bloodline) as a classic road frame that will be a pleasure
    to ride on fast centuries or all-day group rides. I prefer steel frames for road riding.

    -Barry
     
  7. B. Sanders

    B. Sanders Guest

    "Bluto" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Frank Krygowski <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > > I do most of my riding on a Cannondale, and in my experience, it's an _extremely_ comfortable
    > > bike. Personally, I think you're swallowing a load of advertising claptrap, and letting it
    > > convince you of what you feel. I think if you wrapped the bikes' frames in paper, you wouldn't
    > > be able to tell them apart.
    >
    > Funny, isn't it, that Cannondales have maintained uninterrupted their reputation for brutal
    > stiffness for a production span during which their construction and overall mass have changed
    > dramatically?
    >
    > I mean, the new road frames weigh, what, two pounds less than those first straight-gauge,
    > straight-tube models? And the seatstays! Marketing-driven design would have you believe that these
    > tubes are the most influential in determining rider comfort. Yet those original 22mm
    > straight-gauge oval seatstays have, on some models, dwindled to barely half their original mass
    > and less than that stiffness-wise, all without perturbing the "harsh, punishing" ride we all know
    > Cannondales to possess.
    >
    > Likewise the down tubes went from like 1.625", to 2", to a taper only
    > 1.5" in diameter at the small end. The chainstays developed a taper and a curvature and became
    > distinctly slenderer than in the old days. Of course such changes had no effect on the frequent
    > determination that they are, um, harsh. Hmm....
    >
    > I bet it's the brand name sticker that gives these frames their uncompromisingly harsh ride
    > qualities. How else would big-tubed aluminum Klein frames and the recent big-tubed aluminum
    > offerings from Italy manage to escape the same judgement?

    I haven't ridden a Cannondale for a long time, so I can't comment on that; but Gary Klein has had
    plenty to say on the topic of aluminum frame engineering and ride qualities. That there is a
    difference between C-dale and Klein bikes doesn't surprise me. I imagine that C-dales might be less
    harsh (and perhaps less stiff) than they used to be. I certainly hope so!

    -Barry
     
  8. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "B. Sanders" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "Peter Cole" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > >
    > > It's not that complicated, bicycles are simple devices, the science/engineering is well
    > > understood.
    >
    > Apparently not, since we seem to have such vociferous disagreement for which the experts cannot
    > account adequately.

    Sure they can, it's called the "placebo effect".

    > You're arrogant and presumptuous. I, for one, have absolutely no concern for brand or price, or
    > any other factor that could potentially "taint" one's viewpoint in any way that could be
    > tantamount to gullibility. If I have no care for brands, recommendations or any other evaluation
    > but my own, then pray tell, how can that be called gullibility?

    From your previous post: "I'm having a beautiful Soulcraft Royale custom road frameset built as I
    write this. It will fit in my stable next to my WTB 6/4 Ti hardtail, my Klein Attitude (aluminum)
    hardtail, my aluminum disc-equipped Van Dessel Super Fly "all 'rounder" and assorted other bikes. I
    expect the Soulcraft to live up to its reputation (and Salsa bloodline) as a classic road frame that
    will be a pleasure to ride on fast centuries or all-day group rides."

    "No care for brands", you've *got* to be kidding.

    > The people here claiming that they can feel differences in wheels, seatposts, handlebars and
    > frames may not be engineers; but they do have sensitive instrumentation that they use to detect
    > fine differences in bikes: Their own bodies. Humans are finely-honed instruments, whose sensory
    > abilities are boggling in their precision.

    That's nonsense, but of course it's the only rebuttal to objectivity: subjectivity. Unless your
    finely-honed butt is a calibrated accelerometer.

    > It really doesn't matter what arrogant engineers think. It doesn't matter what the magazines
    > print, or what the 16-yr-old wrench at the bike shop thinks. It doesn't matter how much it costs,
    > how light it is, or what it's made of. There *are* differences in frames, wheels, cranks,
    > seatposts, saddles, and most other bike components. Are they huge differences? Perhaps not. Are
    > they detectable? Quite definitely.

    Dude, it's not a violin, it's a tubular metal truss.

    > I'm very tired of having arrogant engineers flash their credentials and then tell me I can't
    > possibly be noticing that which I have quite definitely noticed, time and time again for many
    > years. They are simply wrong.

    Who do you think designs the bikes, the materials they're made of and the components they're
    equipped with, elves?

    > I'd be glad to partake in a double blind study, if someone wants to put it together. Bring it on.

    It's been done, too bad you missed it.
     
  9. Todd Kuzma

    Todd Kuzma Guest

    B. Sanders wrote:

    > Simple: It can't. The people here claiming that they can feel differences in wheels, seatposts,
    > handlebars and frames may not be engineers; but they do have sensitive instrumentation that they
    > use to detect fine differences in bikes: Their own bodies. Humans are finely-honed instruments,
    > whose sensory abilities are boggling in their precision.

    When it comes to perception, humans are highly variable and inaccurate measurements. My favorite
    example is from a friend in the food industry. In a taste test, they gave subjects unflavored
    gelatin colored red. Most subjects reported that it was flavored either cherry or strawberry.
    Because they expected it to be flavored, that is what they perceived. If you think a wheel will make
    a difference in comfort, then it will.

    Todd Kuzma Heron Bicycles Tullio's Big Dog Cyclery LaSalle, IL 815-223-1776
    http://www.heronbicycles.com http://www.tullios.com
     
  10. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

    "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >The back end of my Serotta.

    Hence my statement "unless the frame is a "soft tail" design"... hardly representative of the
    typical road bikes we're discussing.

    I can't tell from the photo - are the seat stays solid or do they telescope in some manner?

    Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame

    >"Mark Hickey" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >news:[email protected]...
    >> "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>
    >> >"Jon Isaacs" <[email protected]> wrote
    >>
    >> >> Consider this: The seat stays are in compression. The deflection of
    >the
    >> >seat
    >> >> stay under a 200lb load is on the order of 0.003inches, the thickness
    >of a
    >> >> human hair. Now push on the seat and notice the deflection.
    >> >>
    >> >Not true given the shape of the tube and geometry. It can be seen with
    >the
    >> >naked eye.
    >>
    >> Unless the frame is a "soft tail" design, there's NO way you can see flex in the rear triangle.
    >> If you did design a frame with seatstays spindly enough to visibly flex under normal loads, it
    >> would be nearly impossible to ride (don't even think about sprinting or climbing on it!).
    >>
    >> >> Changing the clamping point on the seat rails can have more effect on
    >the
    >> >> compliance of the bicycle as a system that the frame itself has.
    >> >>
    >> >Seats and rails are the same
    >>
    >> The 2 degree difference in seat tube angle means that the saddle was cantilevered 2cm further
    >> back on the steeper seat tube bike. That can have a dramatic effect on ride qualities (and is one
    >> reason I use a steeper seat tube on my 'cross bikes).
    >>
    >> Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  11. Waxxer

    Waxxer Guest

    They are solid with polymer dampers on the underside of the seat stays. You can change the damping
    characteristics by changing the density of the polymer strap. I prefer the firmest setting.
    Descending is unbelievable yet the bike is still very stiff even when I am hammering up hill or on
    the flats. Aside from that, the cornering characteristics are amazing. Serotta is know for the
    stiffest BB and chain stays--to the point that some people complain. The bike is a Serotta Hor
    Catergorie.

    I do not believe aluminum in this configuration could withstand the number of cycles before failing.
    The tubes are reformed by Serotta making them taper from a large diameter at the BB to smaller
    diameter at the seat tube and head tube.

    I believe by using good materials such as steel, Ti and Carbon you can tune the performance of a
    frame--despite what all the alleged credentialed engineer say. I love the remark that a frame is not
    like a musical instrument. What bullshit. Whether subjective or not people can tell the difference
    and good frame designers know this.

    I have been riding motorcycles and bicycles for years and may be more tuned in (either in my head or
    my butt). When Honda went to aluminum frames in their MX bikes riders made lots of complaints about
    them being too stiff and frames eventually cracking. I still have my 97 CR 250. However to make it
    work right the suspension had to be reworked to take up a great deal of impact transmission to the
    rider. Many riders wish Honda never went to Aluminum for this reason.

    "Mark Hickey" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >The back end of my Serotta.
    >
    > Hence my statement "unless the frame is a "soft tail" design"... hardly representative of the
    > typical road bikes we're discussing.
    >
    > I can't tell from the photo - are the seat stays solid or do they telescope in some manner?
    >
    > Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
    >
    > >"Mark Hickey" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > >news:[email protected]...
    > >> "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >>
    > >> >"Jon Isaacs" <[email protected]> wrote
    > >>
    > >> >> Consider this: The seat stays are in compression. The deflection
    of
    > >the
    > >> >seat
    > >> >> stay under a 200lb load is on the order of 0.003inches, the
    thickness
    > >of a
    > >> >> human hair. Now push on the seat and notice the deflection.
    > >> >>
    > >> >Not true given the shape of the tube and geometry. It can be seen with
    > >the
    > >> >naked eye.
    > >>
    > >> Unless the frame is a "soft tail" design, there's NO way you can see flex in the rear triangle.
    > >> If you did design a frame with seatstays spindly enough to visibly flex under normal loads, it
    > >> would be nearly impossible to ride (don't even think about sprinting or climbing on it!).
    > >>
    > >> >> Changing the clamping point on the seat rails can have more effect
    on
    > >the
    > >> >> compliance of the bicycle as a system that the frame itself has.
    > >> >>
    > >> >Seats and rails are the same
    > >>
    > >> The 2 degree difference in seat tube angle means that the saddle was cantilevered 2cm further
    > >> back on the steeper seat tube bike. That can have a dramatic effect on ride qualities (and is
    > >> one reason I use a steeper seat tube on my 'cross bikes).
    > >>
    > >> Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  12. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

    "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x y c o r p . c o m> wrote:

    >"Mark Hickey" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >> NO ONE COULD TELL WHICH WAS WHICH. All those magic properties that the authors of the bike review
    >> articles normally gushed about vaporized in a puff of smoke. The same guys who would go on about
    >> the amazing improvement in handling that resulted from changing a SL to an SLX seat tube suddenly
    >> couldn't distinguish between bikes with much, much larger differences in tubing.
    >>
    >> In fact, when they tallied the results, the bike with the highest overall rating was one built
    >> with the cheapest, heaviest tubes.
    >
    >Any idea what issue or even what year this might have been? I'd love to find a copy of that
    >article. I could scan it and post the article here any time this issue comes up.

    I looked through all the old magazines I have laying around, and couldn't find it. IIRC, it
    would have been about 1995, long before 'Bicycle Guide' became 'Bicyclist'. Maybe someone else
    archived a copy?

    >Even better, since you are a manufacturer, how about building up a trio of bikes for someone to
    >test? One Ti, one Al, one steel, all with matching geometries and components. Get one of our more
    >competent participants (hey Jobst, you reading this?) to run the blind test.

    Yeah, that's what I need. Three 74cm used bikes. ;-)

    >I understand if you don't want to do this. Proving that frame materials make no difference in ride
    >quality might have a negative impact on your business....

    I've had the same position for eight years now (never tried to sell a bike based on "ride quality").
    There are lots of other perfectly good (and valid!) reasons to buy a ti frame / bike, IMHO.

    Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  13. Mark Hickey

    Mark Hickey Guest

    Frank Krygowski <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Good! However, we still have lots of people thinking "It's aluminum. It's harsh. Buycycling says
    >so." And apparently they've never thought about the differences between a mid-70s Alan aluminum
    >noodle, an early 80s straight-gage Cannondale with 1/8" wall thickness, and a 2000 aluminum bike
    >with butted tubes, specially shaped tubes, thinner walls, smaller stays, etc etc. All they think is
    >"Buycycling says aluminum is harsh." Hell, they don't even think about what "harsh" might mean.

    Even funnier, because of the flexy nature of some of the earlier aluminum bikes, all aluminum bikes
    got a rap as being noodles. Then suddenly the US writers started describing big-tube aluminum bikes
    (Cannondales and Kleins) as butt-bashers, at the same time their UK counterparts were writing the
    same bikes up as riding "soft".

    Mark Hickey Habanero Cycles http://www.habcycles.com Home of the $695 ti frame
     
  14. waxxer wrote:
    >
    > They are solid with polymer dampers on the underside of the seat stays. You can change the damping
    > characteristics by changing the density of the polymer strap. I prefer the firmest setting.
    > Descending is unbelievable yet the bike is still very stiff even when I am hammering up hill or on
    > the flats. Aside from that, the cornering characteristics are amazing. Serotta is know for the
    > stiffest BB and chain stays--to the point that some people complain. The bike is a Serotta Hor
    > Catergorie.
    >
    > I do not believe aluminum in this configuration could withstand the number of cycles before
    > failing. The tubes are reformed by Serotta making them taper from a large diameter at the BB to
    > smaller diameter at the seat tube and head tube.

    Perhaps aluminum wouldn't work in that application. OTOH, what you've given us is clearly not the
    same as a standard bike frame. Yes, there are unusual designs that are restricted to certain
    materials, but if you want to discuss each of those no-holds-barred designs, we'll be here all
    year. Each one would require as much bickering as we've gone through regarding a "standard" frame
    (what the rest of us thought we were discussing) - and there are hundreds of oddball fringe designs
    out there.

    > I believe by using good materials such as steel, Ti and Carbon you can tune the performance of a
    > frame--despite what all the alleged credentialed engineer say.

    a) "Good" materials? Is there some agency that officially divides materials into "good" and "bad"?
    Gosh, why have we not heard?

    b) "Allegedly credentialed engineers"? You mean like, guys with advanced degrees in engineering,
    who have qualified for and passed state board exams for their professional licenses, perhaps in
    multiple states? Gosh, why would anyone ever want to listen to someone like that, when there's a
    Buycycling subscriber to consult with! ;-)

    > I love the remark that a frame is not like a musical instrument. What bullshit. Whether subjective
    > or not people can tell the difference and good frame designers know this.

    Now here's a dilemma: What do you say when a frame designer is also a degreed engineer? Does that
    totally destroy his credibility with you?

    >
    > I have been riding motorcycles and bicycles for years and may be more tuned in (either in my head
    > or my butt).

    Riding for years, huh? Wow. You mean you had your first bicycle earlier than, say, the 1950s? And
    you had your first motorcycle earlier than the 1960s?

    If so, I bow to your greater experience (though, obviously, not to your technical knowledge).

    Otherwise... well, no, I won't make the obvious remark about your head and your butt!

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  15. "B. Sanders" wrote:
    >
    > "Peter Cole" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > >
    > > It's not that complicated, bicycles are simple devices, the science/engineering is well
    > > understood.
    >
    > Apparently not, since we seem to have such vociferous disagreement for which the experts cannot
    > account adequately.

    I think the language is tripping you up. The fact that they are well understood does not mean they
    are well understood by _everybody_. For some folks, things will always be a mystery.

    > Humans are finely-honed instruments, whose sensory abilities are boggling in their precision.

    :) Right. And there are legions of professional magicians and
    professional faith healers proving you wrong every day!

    I know. "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!"

    --
    Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  16. "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > They are solid with polymer dampers on the underside of the seat stays.
    You
    > can change the damping characteristics by changing the density of the polymer strap. I prefer the
    > firmest setting.

    You don't ride polymer damping on a road bike. Anything that sucks up power to the rear wheel is
    just put on a frame as a gimmick for the overweight and unfit rider.

    You must have the stiffest frame possible, that's why steel doesn't cut it on the road, besides the
    fact that it's way too heavy.

    Get rid of that contraption.
     
  17. Waxxer

    Waxxer Guest

    This is great! We need to start a new thread! "Frank Krygowski" <[email protected]> wrote in
    message news:[email protected]...
    > waxxer wrote:
    > >
    > > They are solid with polymer dampers on the underside of the seat stays.
    You
    > > can change the damping characteristics by changing the density of the polymer strap. I prefer
    > > the firmest setting. Descending is unbelievable
    yet
    > > the bike is still very stiff even when I am hammering up hill or on the flats. Aside from that,
    > > the cornering characteristics are amazing.
    Serotta
    > > is know for the stiffest BB and chain stays--to the point that some
    people
    > > complain. The bike is a Serotta Hor Catergorie.
    > >
    > > I do not believe aluminum in this configuration could withstand the
    number
    > > of cycles before failing. The tubes are reformed by Serotta making them taper from a large
    > > diameter at the BB to smaller diameter at the seat
    tube
    > > and head tube.
    >
    > Perhaps aluminum wouldn't work in that application. OTOH, what you've given us is clearly not the
    > same as a standard bike frame. Yes, there are unusual designs that are restricted to certain
    > materials, but if you want to discuss each of those no-holds-barred designs, we'll be here all
    > year. Each one would require as much bickering as we've gone through regarding a "standard" frame
    > (what the rest of us thought we were discussing) - and there are hundreds of oddball fringe
    > designs out there.
    >
    OK we have new criteria that was not within your cognitive grasp. However this is a conventional
    bike frame. Seven and Lightspeed have variations of this product. There are know hinges, just
    refined engineering--perhaps out of your grasp.
    >
    > > I believe by using good materials such as steel, Ti and Carbon you can
    tune
    > > the performance of a frame--despite what all the alleged credentialed engineer say.
    >
    > a) "Good" materials? Is there some agency that officially divides materials into "good" and
    > "bad"? Gosh, why have we not heard?

    Aluminum is fine for many applications--including bicycles. In fact I prefer it for MTBs. My
    bad--simply trying to state in elementary terms so you might understand.
    >
    > b) "Allegedly credentialed engineers"? You mean like, guys with advanced degrees in engineering,
    > who have qualified for and passed state board exams for their professional licenses, perhaps
    > in multiple states? Gosh, why would anyone ever want to listen to someone like that, when
    > there's a Buycycling subscriber to consult with! ;-)

    God for bid we rely on the state to determine engineering competency. This is oxymoronic. In fact I
    would be embarassed to admit that the state certified my occupation. You could be anything from a
    inmate or worse the offspring of a bureacrat.
    >
    > > I love the remark that a frame is not like a musical instrument. What bullshit. Whether
    > > subjective or not people can tell the difference and good frame designers know this.

    As if Marketing does not push the engineeering claims that we all assume differentiate bicycles.
    >
    > Now here's a dilemma: What do you say when a frame designer is also a degreed engineer? Does that
    > totally destroy his credibility with you?

    No as long as he does not claim to be state certified. Shit, for all I know you passed a distant
    learning curiculum while in prison.
    >
    > >
    > > I have been riding motorcycles and bicycles for years and may be more
    tuned
    > > in (either in my head or my butt).
    >
    > Riding for years, huh? Wow. You mean you had your first bicycle earlier than, say, the 1950s? And
    > you had your first motorcycle earlier than the 1960s?

    Now I am pissed. Yes, my first bicycle was in the late fifities. I was riding Bultacos, Montessas,
    Hodakas and Husqvarnas in the late sixties and through the seventies. I had been riding powered
    vehicles long before my legal lisence--in the dirt.
    >
    > If so, I bow to your greater experience (though, obviously, not to your technical knowledge).
    >
    > Otherwise... well, no, I won't make the obvious remark about your head and your butt!

    Pull your head out of your butt so you can see the real world--or is it a Huffy..

    Is a Frank the samething as a Fred??
    >
    > --
    > Frank Krygowski [email protected]
     
  18. Waxxer

    Waxxer Guest

    Oh shit here comes another Fred. Actually my favorite bike is my Colnago Master-X which is steel.
    Can you paradigm shift?

    "Fabrizio Mazzoleni" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > They are solid with polymer dampers on the underside of the seat stays.
    > You
    > > can change the damping characteristics by changing the density of the polymer strap. I prefer
    > > the firmest setting.
    >
    > You don't ride polymer damping on a road bike. Anything that sucks up power to the rear wheel is
    > just put on a frame as a gimmick for the overweight and unfit rider.
    >
    > You must have the stiffest frame possible, that's why steel doesn't cut it on the road, besides
    > the fact that it's way too heavy.
    >
    > Get rid of that contraption.
    >
    >
     
  19. "waxxer" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > Can you paradigm shift?
    >
    No problem, how about down to the 15 cog to drop everyone on the climb to La Plagne.

    The only Colnagos that are raced nowadays are the C-40, CT-1, and the CF3.
     
  20. Robin Hubert

    Robin Hubert Guest

    "archer" <[email protected]_hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > In article <[email protected]>, "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x y c o
    > r p . c o m> says...
    >
    > ...
    >
    > > Even if we do a blind comparison with two bikes identical except for
    frame
    > > material and prove the point, there will still be pundits who claim they
    can
    > > "feel" the difference. No manufacturer will be willing to do these
    tests.
    > > Prove that materials make no difference and they have no reason to sell expensive carbon fiber
    > > bikes! If we are to prove the point, we need a
    >
    > Sure they will: weight! There are always cyclists are who willing to pay extra for the lightest
    > possible bike.
    >

    I draw the line for "light-weight" bikes at about 23 lbs for those of medium size. Of course, most
    decent road bikes of $1000 are less than that.

    Robin Hubert
     
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