Opinions on REI brand bikes (Novara)?



R

Ryan Cousineau

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:

> Ryan Cousineau wrote:
> > In article <[email protected]>,
> > jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:
> >
> >
> >>Ryan Cousineau wrote:
> >>
> >>>In article <[email protected]>,
> >>> "Zix" <[email protected]> wrote:

> >
> >
> > [REI Novara]
> >
> >
> >>>>I was looking at their Strada racing bike which has an
> >>>>aluminum frame and Shimano 105 components in 5 places,
> >>>>and I was curious if anyone had any experience with this
> >>>>bike. Here is a link:
> >>>>http://www.rei.com/online/store/ProductDisplay?storeId=8000&catalogId=4000
> >>>>0008000&productId=47968697&parent_category_rn=4500865

> >
> >
> >>>>Personally I am not sure that an Alu frame is for me,
> >>>>having experienced for a year the Alu stiffness factor in
> >>>>my previous bike, but I'm responding to the components
> >>>>and sale price and trying to be practical.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>Behold the Approved Standard rbt answer:

> >
> >
> >>>-the feel of "stiffness" is best tuned by adjusting your bike's tire
> >>>pressure in 5 psi increments. There are only a few exceptions, most
> >>>notoriously the infamously whippy Vitus 979 frames. The second most
> >>>important factor in the ride of a bike is probably frame geometry,
> >>>followed by the type of bar tape you use.
> >>
> >>that's parody, right? tire pressure has absolutely ZERO effect on a
> >>frame's mechanical properties or a wheel's mechanical properties, both
> >>of which are significant factors in ride quality. it may be ok to joke
> >>about this stuff once in a while, but it's dangerous here on r.b.t.
> >>because repetition means people start to believe the most outrageous
> >>b.s. as "fact".

> >
> >
> > Jim, I hope I'm not misrepresenting others here, but my impression is
> > that one regular in this newsgroup who makes his living designing and
> > selling titanium frames (Mark Hickey) and one regular in this newsgroup
> > who literally wrote the book on bicycle wheels (Jobst Brandt) have both
> > basically said that given the relative amounts of flex in an inflated
> > tire (significant by design) and virtually any bike frame or wheel
> > (magnitudes smaller), the chance of the frame or wheel's "ride quality"
> > being discernible to any sensible degree is virtually nil.

>
> well, i wouldn't call hickey a "designer". he merely parrots anything
> brandt says, has no interest in data acquisition and doesn't know what
> modulus is. brandt otoh uses deliberately misleading examples to try to
> convince either himself or others that he knows what he's talking about.
> if a bike had /no/ tires, it would still react to loading based on its
> structure. the fact that loading still ends up being transmitted to the
> bike via the tires cannot be avoided - a 200lb person sitting on a bike
> still exerts a 200lb load regardless of tire pressure.


Jim, broadly tarring a guy who has a pretty good reputation for building
Ti frames that work properly and another guy who has spent considerable
years in engineering and the bike industry is not gaining you debating
points.

The tires flex. Heat is generated. those loads are damped. Sic transit
gloria mundi. How do you think pneumatic tires work?

> > I would treat geometry considerations separately: angles and dimensions
> > affect how a bike feels in interesting ways, but most bikes exist within
> > fairly small variations on these parameters.
> >
> > I know you disagree, but I judge the "tire-supremacist" arguments as the
> > most reasonable explanation. My own experience has been that frame
> > materials are not very important to bike feel, but I would not put
> > myself forward as an expert.
> >

> i don't know much about tires either, but i know a bit about materials
> and their application, and i can say with certainty that the structural
> attributes of a bike are /not/ affected by tire pressure. and it's the
> structural attributes that affect the way a bike reacts to you riding it.


Frames flex. But not that much unless you've built a Rinard beam bike.
The diamond frame design has pretty much evolved because it's the
stiffest, lightest structure that will fit a human body and two wheels
(and because the UCI has deemed further evolutions improper...).

I would really like to see a blind test of a steel vs. al or Ti frame,
where they had the same geometry, but if there are any differences a
rider can feel between the steel and aluminum frames, we can fix that
with tire pressure, different bar tape, and a new seat.

To get an idea of how much frame materials matter to feel, or damping,
or whatever, note that both the most notoriously flexy frame (I nominate
the Vitus 979) and the most notoriously stiff frames (choose your
favourite year of Cannondale) are made of aluminum.

Frame material is a specification of a bicycle that I think most buyers
should not stress about: it may be determined by other factors, most
notably a desire for, oh, extreme light weight or the ability to carry a
frame repair kit with you on the road or the ability to stick magnets to
your frame. But attributing special damping properties to frame
materials without regard for frame design, especially given the much
more important contributions to "ride" and "feel" made by things like
wheelbase and tire size and pressure, is not reasonable.

--
Ryan Cousineau [email protected] http://www.wiredcola.com/
"I don't want kids who are thinking about going into mathematics
to think that they have to take drugs to succeed." -Paul Erdos
 
C

Claire Petersky

Guest
"greggery peccary" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]

> my 2003 Strada is getting close to 10k miles. i love the bike!it fits
> great. im kinda tall with medium to long torso & other bikes were too much
> of a scrunch, but get what fits you!


And this is why I started looking for another bike -- I'm kinda tall with a
very short torso. Unlike some other people's experience, REI had no problem
with swapping out the stem, adding some spacers to raise the handlebars (I
like a slightly more upright position), and doing a few other things to make
it fit better. But it never fit perfectly.

> there is no room for a regular fender in front or rear but i use a clip-on
> mtb fender in the rear and wear waterproof socks in the front.


This is to my mind the stupidest part of this bike. REI is based in Seattle,
where it rains plenty -- why no fender room? But I put on raceday fenders,
and those worked just fine.

--
Warm Regards,

Claire Petersky
http://www.bicyclemeditations.org/
Sponsor me for the Big Climb! See: www.active.com/donate/cpetersky06
See the books I've set free at:
http://bookcrossing.com/referral/Cpetersky
 
C

Claire Petersky

Guest
"SMS" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]

> One thing about REI is that they have good hours, unlike some bicycle
> shops that seem to have hours to suit the needs of the staff, rather than
> that of the customers.


I wrote the following on our local commuter board, on a thread that morphed
into a discussion as to whether or not REI had as good service as an LBS:

---
I bought my latest ride from Ti Cycles, because I wanted to work with the
dealer of Co-Motion bikes in our area. Ti Cycles has been great to me, and I
appreciate their excellent work. But the shop is on the other side of the
lake, and there's times when I want the convenience of a shop closer to
where I live on the Eastside. I was riding home late from work on Monday
evening, not coming in until after 8:00 PM. The shifting was deteriorating
through the entire ride, and the little tweaks I made to the derailler
didn't solve the problem. I called the bike shop at the Redmond store as
soon as I got in, and Jim said that I should bring the bike in right away.
As it turned out, the shifter cable had frayed inside the STI housing. He
stayed late, even after the store was officially closed, not only to do
that, but also do some other minor work that he noticed needed to be done.
He said he would do what it took so I could have the bike safe and ready to
ride to work the next day. I think that's at least equal, if not superior,
to the service at any LBS.
---

Most bike shops will be closed by 6:00 or at the latest 7:00, and that's
understandable, considering the small staffs and the thin margins. But REI's
hours meant I could ride to work the next day.


--
Warm Regards,

Claire Petersky
http://www.bicyclemeditations.org/
Sponsor me for the Big Climb! See: www.active.com/donate/cpetersky06
See the books I've set free at:
http://bookcrossing.com/referral/Cpetersky
 
R

rdclark

Guest
RonSonic wrote:

>On the fourth hand, that's what led me to decide to become my
> >own wheelbuilder.


> I'm reminded of the science fiction writer, Larry Niven's Motes. A very decisive
> race, they had two dextrous arms on one side and large powerful, more clawlike
> limb on the other. Their discussions on an issue went along the lines of "on the
> one hand, on the other hand" but the deciding factor was always "on the gripping
> hand."


If this had been rsfw, I might have made it a list of three and used
the Motie saying. But then, Pournelle's politics have sort of put me
off CoDominium references of any sort lately.

RichC
 
S

Sandy

Guest
Dans le message de news:[email protected],
Ryan Cousineau <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
> In article <[email protected]>,
> jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:


>>> I would treat geometry considerations separately: angles and
>>> dimensions affect how a bike feels in interesting ways, but most
>>> bikes exist within fairly small variations on these parameters.
>>>
>>> I know you disagree, but I judge the "tire-supremacist" arguments
>>> as the most reasonable explanation. My own experience has been that
>>> frame materials are not very important to bike feel, but I would
>>> not put myself forward as an expert.
>>>

>> i don't know much about tires either, but i know a bit about
>> materials and their application, and i can say with certainty that
>> the structural attributes of a bike are /not/ affected by tire
>> pressure. and it's the structural attributes that affect the way a
>> bike reacts to you riding it.

>
> Frames flex. But not that much unless you've built a Rinard beam bike.
> The diamond frame design has pretty much evolved because it's the
> stiffest, lightest structure that will fit a human body and two wheels
> (and because the UCI has deemed further evolutions improper...).
>
> I would really like to see a blind test of a steel vs. al or Ti frame,
> where they had the same geometry, but if there are any differences a
> rider can feel between the steel and aluminum frames, we can fix that
> with tire pressure, different bar tape, and a new seat.
>
> To get an idea of how much frame materials matter to feel, or damping,
> or whatever, note that both the most notoriously flexy frame (I
> nominate the Vitus 979) and the most notoriously stiff frames (choose
> your favourite year of Cannondale) are made of aluminum.


I can't agree. I had a 992 (flexible enough) and a Cannondale R400. The
Cannondale was the very best bike fit I have ever had, and was supremely
comfortable on the wind trainer. Put it on the road, and regardless of
saddle or tire or pressure, it was a literal PITA. On the trainer, its
bottom bracket felt no compulsion to stay in one place, either.

These arguments go back, I am sure, to plumbing pipe bikes. Reynolds
310,501, 531, 631, etc. Alu in 6001 or 7003 or 7005 and all other fancier
flavors.

The best fit on a bike may not have much to do with its comportment on the
road. After all, you can place the three points of contact (OK, 5 with two
feet and two hands) on mostly any bike with astute component selection. You
can do this on a custom ergometer, too. You won't be taking the ergometer
on the road.

If all things were really equal, as to component materials, this subject
would not come up repeatedly. Similarly, there would only be one material,
and only one possible riding position for a person. Fortunately, there is
choice ; there is individual preference. And red is always faster.

While your revered experts on this forum have cast-in-stone ideas, they also
are not employed by substantial manufacturing concerns. It's futile and
naive to suggest that those companies put bikes together like a kid puts
together Tinker Toys. It's equally naive to believe that every "newest and
best" product really is that.

But blinders offered to readers are not helpful. Information would be.
Iconoclastic proposal, huh ?
--
Bonne route !

Sandy
Verneuil-sur-Seine FR
 
S

Sandy

Guest
Dans le message de news:[email protected],
Ryan Cousineau <[email protected]> a réfléchi, et puis a déclaré :
> In article <[email protected]>,
> jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:


>>> I would treat geometry considerations separately: angles and
>>> dimensions affect how a bike feels in interesting ways, but most
>>> bikes exist within fairly small variations on these parameters.
>>>
>>> I know you disagree, but I judge the "tire-supremacist" arguments
>>> as the most reasonable explanation. My own experience has been that
>>> frame materials are not very important to bike feel, but I would
>>> not put myself forward as an expert.
>>>

>> i don't know much about tires either, but i know a bit about
>> materials and their application, and i can say with certainty that
>> the structural attributes of a bike are /not/ affected by tire
>> pressure. and it's the structural attributes that affect the way a
>> bike reacts to you riding it.

>
> Frames flex. But not that much unless you've built a Rinard beam bike.
> The diamond frame design has pretty much evolved because it's the
> stiffest, lightest structure that will fit a human body and two wheels
> (and because the UCI has deemed further evolutions improper...).
>
> I would really like to see a blind test of a steel vs. al or Ti frame,
> where they had the same geometry, but if there are any differences a
> rider can feel between the steel and aluminum frames, we can fix that
> with tire pressure, different bar tape, and a new seat.
>
> To get an idea of how much frame materials matter to feel, or damping,
> or whatever, note that both the most notoriously flexy frame (I
> nominate the Vitus 979) and the most notoriously stiff frames (choose
> your favourite year of Cannondale) are made of aluminum.


I can't agree. I had a 992 (flexible enough) and a Cannondale R400. The
Cannondale was the very best bike fit I have ever had, and was supremely
comfortable on the wind trainer. Put it on the road, and regardless of
saddle or tire or pressure, it was a literal PITA. On the trainer, its
bottom bracket felt no compulsion to stay in one place, either.

These arguments go back, I am sure, to plumbing pipe bikes. Reynolds
310,501, 531, 631, etc. Alu in 6001 or 7003 or 7005 and all other fancier
flavors.

The best fit on a bike may not have much to do with its comportment on the
road. After all, you can place the three points of contact (OK, 5 with two
feet and two hands) on mostly any bike with astute component selection. You
can do this on a custom ergometer, too. You won't be taking the ergometer
on the road.

If all things were really equal, as to component materials, this subject
would not come up repeatedly. Similarly, there would only be one material,
and only one possible riding position for a person. Fortunately, there is
choice ; there is individual preference. And red is always faster.

While your revered experts on this forum have cast-in-stone ideas, they also
are not employed by substantial manufacturing concerns. It's futile and
naive to suggest that those companies put bikes together like a kid puts
together Tinker Toys. It's equally naive to believe that every "newest and
best" product really is that.

But blinders offered to readers are not helpful. Information would be.
Iconoclastic proposal, huh ?
--
Bonne route !

Sandy
Verneuil-sur-Seine FR
 
S

SMS

Guest
Sandy wrote:

> While your revered experts on this forum have cast-in-stone ideas, they also
> are not employed by substantial manufacturing concerns. It's futile and
> naive to suggest that those companies put bikes together like a kid puts
> together Tinker Toys. It's equally naive to believe that every "newest and
> best" product really is that.


If you look at the real reasons behind many so-called "advances" they
all come back to being able to lower the production cost. As an
after-thought the manufacturers will create reasons why the change is an
"advance." Sometimes there is some advantage to the end user that falls
out of the change, but often not. With aluminum, you're trading off the
durability and comfort of steel, for a lightweight frame at a very low
price. "Compact" frames allow the manufacturer to produce fewer frame
sizes, and threadless headsets allow fewer different fork/steerer tube
lengths to stock. The problem with this race to the bottom is that
someone that actually understands why the "advances" are anything but,
now needs to spend far more on a niche product that doesn't have the
"advances;" this turns what was a $25-35 savings to the manufacturer,
into hundreds of dollars of extra cost to the consumer.
 
T

Tim McNamara

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
SMS <[email protected]> wrote:

> Sandy wrote:
>
> > While your revered experts on this forum have cast-in-stone ideas,
> > they also are not employed by substantial manufacturing concerns.
> > It's futile and naive to suggest that those companies put bikes
> > together like a kid puts together Tinker Toys. It's equally naive
> > to believe that every "newest and best" product really is that.

>
> If you look at the real reasons behind many so-called "advances" they
> all come back to being able to lower the production cost. As an
> after-thought the manufacturers will create reasons why the change is
> an "advance." Sometimes there is some advantage to the end user that
> falls out of the change, but often not.


I think that there are many examples of changes done to facilitate
manufacturers which were belatedly heralded as improvements for riders-
cassette hubs, cartridge BBs, threadless headsets and V-brakes all being
examples. There are also many changes to facilitate manufacturing that
don't end up on the bike, like packaging of components to be more
efficient for bike factories to deal with.

I don't think that primarily ergonomic changes like brifters fall into
the same category. Those didn't make bike manufacturing any easier.

> With aluminum, you're trading off the durability and comfort of
> steel, for a lightweight frame at a very low price.


Only if you believe that materials make a significant difference in the
ride qualities of the bike.

> "Compact" frames allow the manufacturer to produce fewer frame sizes,
> and threadless headsets allow fewer different fork/steerer tube
> lengths to stock. The problem with this race to the bottom is that
> someone that actually understands why the "advances" are anything
> but, now needs to spend far more on a niche product that doesn't have
> the "advances;" this turns what was a $25-35 savings to the
> manufacturer, into hundreds of dollars of extra cost to the consumer.


Oh, most of these things work well enough for most people. Humans are
proportioned roughly the same and the proportions vary pretty
consistently with height. That means that almost everyone can get
comfortable on bikes with 73 degree seat tubes, for example.
 
D

Dane Buson

Guest
In rec.bicycles.misc Claire Petersky <[email protected]> wrote:
> "greggery peccary" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]
>
>> my 2003 Strada is getting close to 10k miles. i love the bike!it fits
>> great. im kinda tall with medium to long torso & other bikes were too much
>> of a scrunch, but get what fits you!

>
> And this is why I started looking for another bike -- I'm kinda tall with a
> very short torso. Unlike some other people's experience, REI had no problem
> with swapping out the stem, adding some spacers to raise the handlebars (I
> like a slightly more upright position), and doing a few other things to make
> it fit better. But it never fit perfectly.


I'm reasonably happy with my CrossCheck now. I've done the shorter
stem, longer seatpost, and I cut the fork long so I can fiddle with
height until I'm content. If I ever buy a new frame for a sunny day
bike, I'm seriously considering a WSD frame.

>> there is no room for a regular fender in front or rear but i use a clip-on
>> mtb fender in the rear and wear waterproof socks in the front.

>
> This is to my mind the stupidest part of this bike. REI is based in Seattle,
> where it rains plenty -- why no fender room? But I put on raceday fenders,
> and those worked just fine.


You think it's stupid. *I* think it's stupid. But even here in the
Pacific Northwet, lot's of people just stay indoors whenever it rains.
The idea of riding a bike in the rain is inconcievable to them. Of
course I also think it's really stupid because a lot of the bikes like
it also can't carry a decent width tire either.

--
Dane Buson - [email protected]
Cheese -- milk's leap toward immortality.
-- Clifton Fadiman, "Any Number Can Play"
 
M

Michael Press

Guest
In article
<[email protected]>,
Tim McNamara <[email protected]> wrote:


[...]

> Oh, most of these things work well enough for most people. Humans are
> proportioned roughly the same and the proportions vary pretty
> consistently with height. That means that almost everyone can get
> comfortable on bikes with 73 degree seat tubes, for example.


This last paragraph is open to discussion. Since the
wheels do no scale with the frame, a frame builder must
adjust seat tube angle, and head tube angle, among many
other variables, including intended use.

And people are not proportioned the same. Ask a tailor. A
bicycle must be constructed as painstakingly as a good
suit.

--
Michael Press
 
P

Paul Cassel

Guest
Bill Baka wrote:

>>

> Yeah,
> Bush does a pretty good excuse of bashing himself every time he opens
> his mouth lately. It makes watching the news 'almost' fun.
> I can't comment on the bike though, 2 LBS's here and neither sells them.
> Bill


No LBS does since it's REI's house brand. As far as Bush, I think the
insertion of any politics into a non-political ng a bad thing. I'm
disappointed that 41 had to start this.

-paul
 
M

Mike Reed

Guest
I've given the green light to some friends who were considering
Novaras. Everyone I know who has one likes it, and I don't know of any
problems with them.

-Mike
 
D

David

Guest
In article <[email protected]>, Zix
<[email protected]> wrote:

Zix,

If you are buying a Novara bike, you are buying a house brand frame.
Everything else just get slapped on just like another other bikes. So,
basically, buy the bike if the frame fits you.

David.
 
D

David

Guest
In article <[email protected]>,
<[email protected]> wrote:

> just curious, I'm more than a beginning rider but not advanced yet. I
> have an aluminum frame and love it, although I'm not sure what I'd be
> looking for not to love it. However I've heard people knock aluminum
> before and I'm just curious what's all the beef about?
>


Simply because,

Bike companies like to make you buy the next best comfortable bike.
Even people who own titanium or carbon bikes upgrade to the next best
model up. But why? Wasn't their old steed comfortable enough?

If you love your aluminum frame, it probably fits you really well.
Unfortunately, I suspect that the majority of people who hate any
frames may find that the cause of their grief would probably be poor
fitting.

David.
 
D

David

Guest
In article <[email protected]>, Rich Clark
<[email protected]> wrote:

> "Sorni" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]
> > [email protected] wrote:
> >> just curious, I'm more than a beginning rider but not advanced yet. I
> >> have an aluminum frame and love it, although I'm not sure what I'd be
> >> looking for not to love it. However I've heard people knock aluminum
> >> before and I'm just curious what's all the beef about?

> >
> > Prejudice. Myth. Snobbery.

>
> Maybe.
>
> I once test-rode (i.e., 10-mile hilly loops) a Fuji Roubaix and a Roubaix
> Pro in quick succession.


Or in the running world, you can test a pair of Mizuno Waverider 8
against a pair of Mizuno Nirvana. If the runner has overpronation,
running with the waverider 8 for only 5 km may or may not develop pain
on the I.T band. But any further than that, pain will start to set in.
Whereas, the same runner running with a pair of Mizuno Nirvana may
NEVER develop I.T band even after 5km. Why? Nirvana does have more
cushion than the waverider (it's heavier).. So more cushion helps
comfort? Not exactly. Nirvana is a motion control shoe which helps
control overpronation. Running longer distances stresses the weak
muscles if you are an overpronator and are running with the wrong
shoes.

This is exactly the same as with a bike. Riding any bike for a very
short distance barely stresses any of your strong and weak muscles.
What makes a bike ride so uncomfortable is the fit. A poor fit will
show its true colors once your muscles are stressed. That's why, fit
professionals usually advise people to ride at least 100 to 300km
before they come back for a second fit. Or if they need to. Just
minute changes in the seat height, stem length or rise or even bar
width can make a big difference in comfort or torture.

David.
 
>>I've always thought the Novara bikes were right up there with
Specialized, Trek, Lemond, Cannondale and other popular brands. They
do seem to give you great components for the price. If the bike fits
and you can get a good deal, then go for it! <<

That may be pushing it. Comparing chinee made bikes to Cannondale and
Lemond? You obviously have bike envy. Trek and spec. make their
bikes there so they are closer.
 
M

Michael Wileman

Guest
In <[email protected]> "Mike Reed" <waterrocke[email protected]> writes:

>I've given the green light to some friends who were considering
>Novaras. Everyone I know who has one likes it, and I don't know of any
>problems with them.


My wife has a Novara hybrid that's about 15-years old now.
The fork failed catastrophically while still in warranty,
but they refused to replace it under warranty, claiming it
had been abused. They seemed to just assume that it could
only have failed if it had been abused. In other words,
their warranty didn't really cover the fork.

After some insistence, they did eventually replace the fork,
but didn't bother to find one that matched the frame, and
didn't bother to paint the green fork before installing on
it on the black frame.

That said, I still have the black bike with the green fork,
and it still works well. It has been a pretty good book for
its price point.

Mike
 
J

jim beam

Guest
Ryan Cousineau wrote:
> In article <[email protected]>,
> jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>
>>Ryan Cousineau wrote:
>>
>>>In article <[email protected]>,
>>> jim beam <[email protected]> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>>Ryan Cousineau wrote:
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>>In article <[email protected]>,
>>>>>"Zix" <[email protected]> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>[REI Novara]
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>>>>I was looking at their Strada racing bike which has an
>>>>>>aluminum frame and Shimano 105 components in 5 places,
>>>>>>and I was curious if anyone had any experience with this
>>>>>>bike. Here is a link:
>>>>>>http://www.rei.com/online/store/ProductDisplay?storeId=8000&catalogId=4000
>>>>>>0008000&productId=47968697&parent_category_rn=4500865
>>>
>>>
>>>>>>Personally I am not sure that an Alu frame is for me,
>>>>>>having experienced for a year the Alu stiffness factor in
>>>>>>my previous bike, but I'm responding to the components
>>>>>>and sale price and trying to be practical.
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>Behold the Approved Standard rbt answer:
>>>
>>>
>>>>>-the feel of "stiffness" is best tuned by adjusting your bike's tire
>>>>>pressure in 5 psi increments. There are only a few exceptions, most
>>>>>notoriously the infamously whippy Vitus 979 frames. The second most
>>>>>important factor in the ride of a bike is probably frame geometry,
>>>>>followed by the type of bar tape you use.
>>>>
>>>>that's parody, right? tire pressure has absolutely ZERO effect on a
>>>>frame's mechanical properties or a wheel's mechanical properties, both
>>>>of which are significant factors in ride quality. it may be ok to joke
>>>>about this stuff once in a while, but it's dangerous here on r.b.t.
>>>>because repetition means people start to believe the most outrageous
>>>>b.s. as "fact".
>>>
>>>
>>>Jim, I hope I'm not misrepresenting others here, but my impression is
>>>that one regular in this newsgroup who makes his living designing and
>>>selling titanium frames (Mark Hickey) and one regular in this newsgroup
>>>who literally wrote the book on bicycle wheels (Jobst Brandt) have both
>>>basically said that given the relative amounts of flex in an inflated
>>>tire (significant by design) and virtually any bike frame or wheel
>>>(magnitudes smaller), the chance of the frame or wheel's "ride quality"
>>>being discernible to any sensible degree is virtually nil.

>>
>>well, i wouldn't call hickey a "designer". he merely parrots anything
>>brandt says, has no interest in data acquisition and doesn't know what
>>modulus is. brandt otoh uses deliberately misleading examples to try to
>>convince either himself or others that he knows what he's talking about.
>> if a bike had /no/ tires, it would still react to loading based on its
>>structure. the fact that loading still ends up being transmitted to the
>>bike via the tires cannot be avoided - a 200lb person sitting on a bike
>>still exerts a 200lb load regardless of tire pressure.

>
>
> Jim, broadly tarring a guy who has a pretty good reputation for building
> Ti frames that work properly and another guy who has spent considerable
> years in engineering and the bike industry is not gaining you debating
> points.


but ryan, nothing personal, but having a frame built in china and
sticking your name on it is no science. and if i sold you a book saying
the earth was flat, would that change the shape of the planet? there
are a number of fundamental engineering errors in brandt's book. i
don't care how long he's been selling/telling his stories - time doesn't
make those errors go away.

>
> The tires flex. Heat is generated. those loads are damped. Sic transit
> gloria mundi. How do you think pneumatic tires work?


how do you think air pressure affects the bike's structure?

>
>
>>>I would treat geometry considerations separately: angles and dimensions
>>>affect how a bike feels in interesting ways, but most bikes exist within
>>>fairly small variations on these parameters.
>>>
>>>I know you disagree, but I judge the "tire-supremacist" arguments as the
>>>most reasonable explanation. My own experience has been that frame
>>>materials are not very important to bike feel, but I would not put
>>>myself forward as an expert.
>>>

>>
>>i don't know much about tires either, but i know a bit about materials
>>and their application, and i can say with certainty that the structural
>>attributes of a bike are /not/ affected by tire pressure. and it's the
>>structural attributes that affect the way a bike reacts to you riding it.

>
>
> Frames flex. But not that much unless you've built a Rinard beam bike.
> The diamond frame design has pretty much evolved because it's the
> stiffest, lightest structure that will fit a human body and two wheels
> (and because the UCI has deemed further evolutions improper...).
>
> I would really like to see a blind test of a steel vs. al or Ti frame,
> where they had the same geometry, but if there are any differences a
> rider can feel between the steel and aluminum frames, we can fix that
> with tire pressure, different bar tape, and a new seat.
>
> To get an idea of how much frame materials matter to feel, or damping,
> or whatever, note that both the most notoriously flexy frame (I nominate
> the Vitus 979) and the most notoriously stiff frames (choose your
> favourite year of Cannondale) are made of aluminum.


ok, this is not a test. if you want to specify all tubes be of the
exact same dimensions, anyone could tell the differences because the
modulus of those materials is so different. but once we allow the
dimensions of those tubes to change, all bets are off. i have two
aluminum frames. with the same pair of wheels/tires/air pressure, one
will jolt you till your teeth rattle, the other is so comfy, it's like
grandma's sofa. now, do you want to discuss materials again?

>
> Frame material is a specification of a bicycle that I think most buyers
> should not stress about:


we agree.

> it may be determined by other factors, most
> notably a desire for, oh, extreme light weight or the ability to carry a
> frame repair kit with you on the road or the ability to stick magnets to
> your frame. But attributing special damping properties to frame
> materials without regard for frame design, especially given the much
> more important contributions to "ride" and "feel" made by things like
> wheelbase and tire size and pressure, is not reasonable.
>

eh? who mentioned "damping properties"? metal frames/wheels don't do
that - they essentially have no hysteresis loop. and we haven't yet
discussed carbon composites, which /do/ attenuate force transmission
depending on rate of application, but that's a whole different debate.

getting back to the original point, we agree, tires affect the magnitude
of road force transmission to the structure, but where we don't seem to
agree is recognition of the fact that once this road force has been
transmitted /to/ the structure by the tire, the way the structure reacts
to that force will entirely determine "feel".

this recognition is like brandt's bogus argument about "deflection is
equivalent to riding over a sheet of paper". now, a purely radial load
does indeed deflect a rim in that order of magnitude. but, that
deflection is irrespective of tire pressure. and deflection requires
the application of force. would anyone seriously argue they can't feel
the force necessary to deflect a rim that much? they should; it's over
100 lbs.
 
J

jim beam

Guest
Tim McNamara wrote:
> In article <[email protected]>,
> SMS <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>
>>Sandy wrote:
>>
>>
>>>While your revered experts on this forum have cast-in-stone ideas,
>>>they also are not employed by substantial manufacturing concerns.
>>>It's futile and naive to suggest that those companies put bikes
>>>together like a kid puts together Tinker Toys. It's equally naive
>>>to believe that every "newest and best" product really is that.

>>
>>If you look at the real reasons behind many so-called "advances" they
>>all come back to being able to lower the production cost. As an
>>after-thought the manufacturers will create reasons why the change is
>>an "advance." Sometimes there is some advantage to the end user that
>>falls out of the change, but often not.

>
>
> I think that there are many examples of changes done to facilitate
> manufacturers which were belatedly heralded as improvements for riders-
> cassette hubs, cartridge BBs, threadless headsets and V-brakes all being
> examples.


1. cassette hubs [old shimano style at any rate] are better because they
address the bearing load/axle fatigue issues.
2. threadless headsets are an improvement as they eliminate stem wear.
3. cartridge bb's are an improvement because they're more tolerant of
misaligned bb shells and inability to adjust bearings properly.
4. v.brakes are an improvement because they're less prone to cable fouling.

another example would be oversize stems/handlebars. they offer /much/
better resistance to the bars rotating, something to which i'm prone.
they should be better in fatigue too.

> There are also many changes to facilitate manufacturing that
> don't end up on the bike, like packaging of components to be more
> efficient for bike factories to deal with.
>
> I don't think that primarily ergonomic changes like brifters fall into
> the same category. Those didn't make bike manufacturing any easier.


but you agree that they improve the bike though, right?

>
>
>>With aluminum, you're trading off the durability and comfort of
>>steel, for a lightweight frame at a very low price.

>
>
> Only if you believe that materials make a significant difference in the
> ride qualities of the bike.
>
>
>>"Compact" frames allow the manufacturer to produce fewer frame sizes,
>>and threadless headsets allow fewer different fork/steerer tube
>>lengths to stock. The problem with this race to the bottom is that
>>someone that actually understands why the "advances" are anything
>>but, now needs to spend far more on a niche product that doesn't have
>>the "advances;" this turns what was a $25-35 savings to the
>>manufacturer, into hundreds of dollars of extra cost to the consumer.

>
>
> Oh, most of these things work well enough for most people. Humans are
> proportioned roughly the same and the proportions vary pretty
> consistently with height. That means that almost everyone can get
> comfortable on bikes with 73 degree seat tubes, for example.
 
M

Mike Reed

Guest
Where something is made does not determine its quality.

For instance, Fords, GMs, and Dodges are made in the United States and
are low quality. Yet, Honda Accords are made in the United States and
are fairly high quality.

-Mike