• 01-13-2019
    Waspinator
    Why no titanium bikes in pro peloton?
    I realize this sounds like a topic that has been beaten to death, but being the new owner of a titanium bike (Litespeed T1SL), I cant help but wonder why carbon fiber is now king.

    It seems you can easily build a Ti bike that is below the UCI weight limit, and that has excellent ride characteristics. The only thing you cannot do with them is build them to be “aero”, which I think most of us agree is a bunch of BS anyway. (At a mere 30-40mph with a large, clunky object - eg the rider - atop the bike, wind resistance from the bike is comparatively negligible).

    Has anyone published any study documenting the superiority of carbon fiber over Al or Ti in the various criteria by which one would evaluate a pro-level bike (eg stiffness, rider positioning, and comfort)?
  • 01-13-2019
    Marc
    A) Cost of production. CF bikes are easy to mass produce. A Ti bike is not.

    B) Strength/stiffness vs weight. To be as strong/stiff the ti bike will weigh more. Sure you can make a ti bike near the UCI limit--but it will be a noodle and not last very long (There were a few years of pre-buyout Litespeeds where they found this out).
  • 01-13-2019
    Akirasho
    Also, remember that professional road racing (at least) is a marketing tool and rolling billboard

    Ti did have it's day in the Pro Peloton (Armstrong rode a Ti (Litespeed?) framed TT bike rebadged as a Trek in at least one tour) and rebadging prolly still goes on if the Pro has enough clout to choose a specific frame's characteristics (less of an issue these days because of the relatively cheap one off cost of CF).

    Back in the day, I recall, that upon his retirement, Indurain walked into a shop and bought a Cannondale CAAD off the peg! Course, that was over 20 years ago.


    You might see more varied frame materials still used on the track but that's a real niche.
  • 01-13-2019
    Peter P.
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    Has anyone published any study documenting the superiority of carbon fiber over Al or Ti in the various criteria by which one would evaluate a pro-level bike (eg stiffness, rider positioning, and comfort)?

    I don't know of any documentation, but I find this video interesting.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehIEKHZOl-8

    Carbon fiber is now king because the frame can take an almost infinite number of shapes, leading to annual market changes and market driven claims of "stronger, stiffer, lighter, more compliant..." which drives demand and sales. Titanium is not amenable to such shaping (nor does it need to be, to be competitive).
  • 01-13-2019
    asgelle
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    The only thing you cannot do with them is build them to be “aero”, which I think most of us agree is a bunch of BS anyway.

    Speak for yourself. At any rate there will always be many who are ill- or misinformed.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    (At a mere 30-40mph with a large, clunky object - eg the rider - atop the bike, wind resistance from the bike is comparatively negligible).

    And you base this on what? The data show at racing speeds the power savings from an aero frame are easily measured and on the order of the difference in placings.

    And to answer your question, first, I'm not sure there isn't a team at the Continental or Pro-Continental level that rides one. Second, the reason there are no titanium frames at the Pro Tour level is that no manufacturer is willing to pay a team to ride one.
  • 01-13-2019
    PBL450
    Nothing to do with Ti but Spesh is trying to race their new Al at TDU. I think that’s pretty cool.

    Peter Sagan to debut alloy frame and tubeless tyres in Down Under Classic - Gallery | Cyclingnews.com
  • 01-13-2019
    MR_GRUMPY
    Sponsorship…..Besides the hundreds of frames, the sponsor would have to come up with a large pile of money...….And provide a frame that weighs the same as carbon frames.
  • 01-13-2019
    Waspinator
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
    Speak for yourself. At any rate there will always be many who are ill- or misinformed.


    And you base this on what? The data show at racing speeds the power savings from an aero frame are easily measured and on the order of the difference in placings.

    And to answer your question, first, I'm not sure there isn't a team at the Continental or Pro-Continental level that rides one. Second, the reason there are no titanium frames at the Pro Tour level is that no manufacturer is willing to pay a team to ride one.

    Data? What data?

    Can you provide me with a reference to this data?

    And better yet, can you provide me with a reference to data acquired by someone actually trained in some field of science who knows how to properly carry out a study, as opposed to some bike frame designer who labeled himself an “engineer”?
  • 01-13-2019
    asgelle
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    Data? What data?

    Right. That's the question, where did you get your data? Having presented yourself as knowledgable on the subject, I asked what is the basis for your conclusions. And no, I won't do your work for you.
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    ...as opposed to some bike frame designer who labeled himself an 'engineer'?

    In light of Gerard Vrooman's, Phil White's, and Damon Rinard's backgrounds (not to slight other who I don't recall off hand), that's really funny. At any rate, look for their CVs and white papers.
  • 01-13-2019
    BacDoc
    There might be some Ti bikes, in the past it was not unusual for a pro to go to a frame builder “of honor “ to build a custom frame then paint it to match sponsors.

    Now with tech being as state of the art as it is, there’s probably no advantage. The custom magic with steel and Ti is still there but sadly computer algorithm is replacing the hand of the master frame builders for the pros anyway.

    Enjoy the ride of your Ti Lightspeed!
  • 01-13-2019
    Waspinator
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
    Speak for yourself. At any rate there will always be many who are ill- or misinformed.


    And you base this on what? The data show at racing speeds the power savings from an aero frame are easily measured and on the order of the difference in placings.

    And to answer your question, first, I'm not sure there isn't a team at the Continental or Pro-Continental level that rides one. Second, the reason there are no titanium frames at the Pro Tour level is that no manufacturer is willing to pay a team to ride one.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    A) Cost of production. CF bikes are easy to mass produce. A Ti bike is not.

    B) Strength/stiffness vs weight. To be as strong/stiff the ti bike will weigh more. Sure you can make a ti bike near the UCI limit--but it will be a noodle and not last very long (There were a few years of pre-buyout Litespeeds where they found this out).

    I don’t think your strength/stiffness vs weight argument has been scientifically proven. Like many developments in the bike industry, it was presented as fact and everyone simply accepted it and followed suit in choice of frame materials. But I don’t think it’s true.

    Moreover, your “won’t last very long” assertion is patently false. At very least, we know that titanium, like steel, can endure an unlimited number of flex cycles below its elastic modulus without failing. There is absolutely nothing to suggest that a titanium frame wouldn’t last through multiple pro races. Hell, is there even anecdotal evidence that they don’t last? I doubt it.

    I’d be very curious to talk to a company that has real engineers.... ie individuals with PhDs in material sciences who have conducted well-designed research into various building materials. Boeing, for example, would have actual engineers who have carefully studied the various materials such as Al, Ti, and CF and know their properties well.
  • 01-13-2019
    cxwrench
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    Data? What data?

    Can you provide me with a reference to this data?

    And better yet, can you provide me with a reference to data acquired by someone actually trained in some field of science who knows how to properly carry out a study, as opposed to some bike frame designer who labeled himself an “engineer”?

    Wow...this is roughly the equivalent of bring a wooden spoon to a gunfight. You should quit while you're not light years behind. Just give up on trying to convince anyone of anything at all in this thread. Read what has been posted...absorb it...and just stop.
  • 01-13-2019
    Marc
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    I don’t think your strength/stiffness vs weight argument has been scientifically proven. Like many developments in the bike industry, it was presented as fact and everyone simply accepted it and followed suit in choice of frame materials. But I don’t think it’s true.

    Moreover, your “won’t last very long” assertion is patently false. At very least, we know that titanium, like steel, can endure an unlimited number of flex cycles below its elastic modulus without failing. There is absolutely nothing to suggest that a titanium frame wouldn’t last through multiple pro races. Hell, is there even anecdotal evidence that they don’t last? I doubt it.

    I’d be very curious to talk to a company that has real engineers.... ie individuals with PhDs in material sciences who have conducted well-designed research into various building materials. Boeing, for example, would have actual engineers who have carefully studied the various materials such as Al, Ti, and CF and know their properties well.

    I already told you there was, and even told you specifically when it happened and who manufactured it.


    Why do you ask questions on this forum...then argue with answers you clearly haven't read?
  • 01-13-2019
    Trek_5200
    its expensive to sponsor a team. serotta did years ago and it was a factor in their going bankrupt. if you go to some high end fondos targeted at serious amateurs and pros such as the marmotte and the maratona you will see titanium bikes but these are purchased by the athletes themselves.

    the answer has nothing to do about the merits of titanium vs carbon but everything to do with economics
  • 01-13-2019
    Waspinator
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
    Speak for yourself. At any rate there will always be many who are ill- or misinformed.


    And you base this on what? The data show at racing speeds the power savings from an aero frame are easily measured and on the order of the difference in placings.

    And to answer your question, first, I'm not sure there isn't a team at the Continental or Pro-Continental level that rides one. Second, the reason there are no titanium frames at the Pro Tour level is that no manufacturer is willing to pay a team to ride one.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    A) Cost of production. CF bikes are easy to mass produce. A Ti bike is not.

    B) Strength/stiffness vs weight. To be as strong/stiff the ti bike will weigh more. Sure you can make a ti bike near the UCI limit--but it will be a noodle and not last very long (There were a few years of pre-buyout Litespeeds where they found this out).

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by BacDoc View Post
    There might be some Ti bikes, in the past it was not unusual for a pro to go to a frame builder “of honor “ to build a custom frame then paint it to match sponsors.

    Now with tech being as state of the art as it is, there’s probably no advantage. The custom magic with steel and Ti is still there but sadly computer algorithm is replacing the hand of the master frame builders for the pros anyway.

    Enjoy the ride of your Ti Lightspeed!

    BacDoc. Chiropractor or spine surgeon?
  • 01-13-2019
    asgelle
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    At very least, we know that titanium, like steel, can endure an unlimited number of flex cycles below its elastic modulus ...

    It doesn’t help to use big words when you don’t know what they mean.
  • 01-13-2019
    Fredrico
    Team Gewiss-Ballan rode titanium DeRosas during the '90s. Drugged up, they kicked butt.

    The team produced winners of the Giro d’Italia – Evgeni Berzin and Ivan Gotti as well as top classic specialists Giorgio Furlan and Nicola Minali. Former World Champion Moreno Argentin finished his career with the team on a high note with stage wins at the 1993 Giro d'Italia as well as the impressive win at La Flèche Wallonne in 1994. The team dominated cycling [on DeRosa titanium bikes] during the 1994 season with Giorgio Furlan winning Tirreno–Adriatico (and Berzin second overall) and Furlan winning Milan–San Remo. Berzin then won Liège–Bastogne–Liège which was followed by Argentin’s win in La Flèche Wallonne. The win in the Fleche Wallonne was impressive because the team completely dominated the race with taking all podium places at the race with Argentin, Furlan and Berzin ahead of many greats of cycling at the time including Claudio Chiappucci, Franco Ballerini, Davide Cassani and Gianni Bugno.

    After the Fleche Wallonne of 1994, French sports newspaper L'Équipe interviewed the team’s doctor Michele Ferrari. Journalist Jean-Michel Rouet asked Ferrari if his riders used EPO to which Ferrari denied prescribing the drug but said he would not find it wrong, saying that it was not dangerous and compared taking EPO to drinking orange juice. This remark generated controversy and Ferrari later stepped down as team doctor.[2]

    Afterwards Berzin won the 1994 Giro d'Italia while Piotr Ugrumov came second overall in 1994 Tour de France. Vladislav Bobrik won the Giro di Lombardia in the late season for the team.

    In the following year, the team was not as dominant but still successful. Berzin came second at the 1995 Giro d'Italia behind Tony Rominger and ahead of his teammate Ugrumov. The team set the record speed of the team time trial at the 1995 Tour de France of 54.930 km/h. This speed stood for ten years until Lance Armstrong's Discovery Channel Team broke it during the 2005 Tour de France. The Gewiss team beat Laurent Jalabert's Team ONCE to second place and the defending champion Miguel Indurain’s Banesto to third place. Riis would wear the yellow jersey as leader of the general classification in that year’s Tour before eventually finishing third overall.
    --wiki
  • 01-13-2019
    masont
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    Data? What data?

    Can you provide me with a reference to this data?

    And better yet, can you provide me with a reference to data acquired by someone actually trained in some field of science who knows how to properly carry out a study, as opposed to some bike frame designer who labeled himself an “engineer”?

    "I'm not willing to do my own research, so I will demand you do it for me and when you refuse I will assume it's because you are wrong. But if you do give me information, so you know, here are the ways I will discredit it"
  • 01-13-2019
    kiwisimon
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MR_GRUMPY View Post
    Sponsorship…..Besides the hundreds of frames, the sponsor would have to come up with a large pile of money...….And provide a frame that weighs the same as carbon frames.

    drop the mic.
  • 01-13-2019
    steelbikerider
    Litespeed was a bike sponsor for Lotto in 2002 I believe. They found it was expensive.
  • 01-13-2019
    Waspinator
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by masont View Post
    "I'm not willing to do my own research, so I will demand you do it for me and when you refuse I will assume it's because you are wrong. But if you do give me information, so you know, here are the ways I will discredit it"

    Of course. That’s how it works. Someone making a claim (or accepting a claim) should support that claim with research.
  • 01-13-2019
    Alaska Mike
    The OP has very entrenched opinions about the superiority of titanium, Litespeed, and the T1SL, which he has made clear in previous threads. This is all perfectly fine, as it's always nice to love what you ride. You may or may not agree with him, but I doubt you will sway him.

    As much as I love my high-end titanium bikes, they can't compete with my plastic bikes- all "superbikes" of their respective years. The ability to precisely tune the carbon layup just simply cannot be duplicated in production on a metal frame. They're just very, very different animals, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages.
  • 01-13-2019
    masont
  • 01-14-2019
    Jay Strongbow
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post
    The OP has very entrenched opinions about the superiority of titanium, Litespeed, and the T1SL, which he has made clear in previous threads.

    yes, troll level stuff but he's serious. Worth considering before banging your head against the wall and telling him anything other that his bike is the best and far superior to any other bike.
  • 01-14-2019
    tlg
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    The only thing you cannot do with them is build them to be “aero”, which I think most of us agree is a bunch of BS anyway.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    Of course. That’s how it works. Someone making a claim (or accepting a claim) should support that claim with research.

    Daaanngg. Do you need a sponge to soak up all that irony?

    YOU made the claim... in Post #1.
    So PLEASE follow your advice and support your claim with research.
  • 01-14-2019
    Coolhand
    No Dentists in the ProTour. . .
  • 01-14-2019
    velodog
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Coolhand View Post
    No Dentists in the ProTour. . .

    You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Coolhand again.
  • 01-14-2019
    taodemon
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tlg View Post
    Daaanngg. Do you need a sponge to soak up all that irony?

    YOU made the claim... in Post #1.
    So PLEASE follow your advice and support your claim with research.

    Pretty much this.

    YMSSRA.

    Aero has only been tested by everyone from PHDs at bike companies to independent PHDS, to independent bike mags to joe blow all unscientific on his local strava segments...

    Just because you choose to ignore something doesn't mean it doesn't exist. But don't let that stop you from enjoying your slower non aero ti bike.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by PBL450 View Post
    Nothing to do with Ti but Spesh is trying to race their new Al at TDU. I think that’s pretty cool.

    Peter Sagan to debut alloy frame and tubeless tyres in Down Under Classic - Gallery | Cyclingnews.com

    Sagan managed second on it I guess. "New" is subjective though as the sprint frame has been around for a few years, the only new part being the disc brakes. :p
  • 01-14-2019
    exracer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    I already told you there was, and even told you specifically when it happened and who manufactured it.


    Why do you ask questions on this forum...then argue with answers you clearly haven't read?

    Even though it happens to be the reality of things, he didn't like your answer therefore it has to wrong.
  • 01-14-2019
    Notvintage
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Akirasho View Post
    Also, remember that professional road racing (at least) is a marketing tool and rolling billboard.

    Hence the carbon clinchers that are no better (typically worse) than aluminum rims and idiotic disc brakes (driven largely by the carbon clinchers they pushed).
  • 01-14-2019
    Notvintage
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    I don’t think your strength/stiffness vs weight argument has been scientifically proven.

    Young's modulus of Toray T700S (common in road bikes) is 230 Gpa, and garden variety Ti-6AL-4V is around 115 Gpa. Cooked pasta noodle to uncooked respectively.
  • 01-14-2019
    Notvintage
    At this point I must ask. . Does Trek make good titanium frames? LOL
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Don't get me wrong, I loved my Moots Compact so much that I bought a Vamoots RSL to build up as a race bike. At my level, the bike isn't what's making me progressively slower. The trade-offs in performance are compensated by the durability, serviceability, and aesthetics (yes, I'm shallow). And again, the trade offs are minimal at my level, which is far, far below the professional level, and nobody is paying me to ride their bikes.

    I love titanium as a bike frame material, but it has it's limits- as does every material.
  • 01-14-2019
    TimV
    Titanium bicycle frames are expensive to produce, even in mass quantities. Carbon fiber frames are much less expensive by comparison and can be built to be nearly as light, stiff, strong, etc.

    All of the big name companies build high end carbon road bikes and therefore race high end carbon road bikes. This is simple marketing (race on Sunday sell on Monday). Whether or not titanium might be marginally better than carbon is frankly irrelevant.

    My primary whip is a custom titanium Kish, btw.
  • 01-14-2019
    OldChipper
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Peter P. View Post
    I don't know of any documentation, but I find this video interesting.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehIEKHZOl-8

    Carbon fiber is now king because the frame can take an almost infinite number of shapes, leading to annual market changes and market driven claims of "stronger, stiffer, lighter, more compliant..." which drives demand and sales. Titanium is not amenable to such shaping (nor does it need to be, to be competitive).

    Outstanding example of flawed experiment. The tubes were not designed for having a truck driven over them, they were designed for the stresses experienced by bicycle frames.

    This is the same flawed argument that the disc brake fans make. It’s not a questions of “better” it’s a question of “good enough for the application.”


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
  • 01-14-2019
    OldChipper
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    I’d be very curious to talk to a company that has real engineers.... ie individuals with PhDs in material sciences who have conducted well-designed research into various building materials. Boeing, for example, would have actual engineers who have carefully studied the various materials such as Al, Ti, and CF and know their properties well.

    Boeing, Airbus, etc.? You mean the companies whose latest/greatest plane design incorporate copious amounts of carbon fiber composites???


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
  • 01-14-2019
    tlg
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Waspinator View Post
    I don’t think your strength/stiffness vs weight argument has been scientifically proven.

    Uhhh yea... it's been scientifically proven.


    Quote:

    I’d be very curious to talk to a company that has real engineers.... ie individuals with PhDs in material sciences who have conducted well-designed research into various building materials. Boeing, for example, would have actual engineers who have carefully studied the various materials such as Al, Ti, and CF and know their properties well.
    I'm a real engineer. Although I don't have a PhD in material science. But you could ask a Boeing engineer why they make airplanes structures from carbon fiber and not from titanium. :thumbsup:
  • 01-14-2019
    mfdemicco
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post

    As much as I love my high-end titanium bikes, they can't compete with my plastic bikes- all "superbikes" of their respective years. The ability to precisely tune the carbon layup just simply cannot be duplicated in production on a metal frame. They're just very, very different animals, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages.

    That's if you buy that "tuning" really accomplishes anything but market speak. To me, a frame is supposed to be rigid and is a structure to enable the attachment of components in the proper locations. Tires and tire pressure has more effect than frame material. People say that steel rides better, Ti rides better, carbon fiber is too stiff; it's all BS.
  • 01-14-2019
    cxwrench
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    That's if you buy that "tuning" really accomplishes anything but market speak. To me, a frame is supposed to be rigid and is a structure to enable the attachment of components in the proper locations. Tires and tire pressure has more effect than frame material. People say that steel rides better, Ti rides better, carbon fiber is too stiff; it's all BS.

    I pretty much agree w/ this, same thing when people talk about wheels and 'ride quality'. So many other things contribute to ride quality before wheels and to be honest frames unless you have some kind of mechanical pivot built into the frame somewhere ala iso-speed.
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    That's if you buy that "tuning" really accomplishes anything but market speak. To me, a frame is supposed to be rigid and is a structure to enable the attachment of components in the proper locations. Tires and tire pressure has more effect than frame material. People say that steel rides better, Ti rides better, carbon fiber is too stiff; it's all BS.

    Have you ever ridden a bike that was too soft in the tail, that flexed the wheels into the brake pads? How about too stiff, that transmitted too much road vibration to the rider or rode like a cement block? Two extremes that the tuning I speak of mitigates. When you're trying to shave weight, where you put your structural strength is very, very important, no matter what material you use. The ability to make very small tweaks to a layup give carbon fiber a very large advantage in this regard.

    I've owned all of the common bike frame materials, across a wide spectrum of performance profiles- usually with the same components attached as I tore down one frameset and built up another. Wheels, tires, and air pressure certainly do matter for ride quality, but frame design does have a very real impact. Certain combinations of parameters are much easier to meet with certain materials.

    I don't chase the latest and greatest. I've said it before- the last real advances in road bike frame design were ten years ago. I prefer simple, reliable, and easy to work on. We'll see how I deal with the PF30 bottom bracket on my RSL (adapted to a GXP crank). I'm tired of fishing cables through frames or press-fitting much of anything. I just want to ride my bike, do a quick clean-up and lube afterwards, and get on with life.
  • 01-14-2019
    mfdemicco
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post
    Have you ever ridden a bike that was too soft in the tail, that flexed the wheels into the brake pads?

    That's caused by low spoke count wheels with a stiff rim.
  • 01-14-2019
    PBL450
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by taodemon View Post
    Pretty much this.

    YMSSRA.

    Aero has only been tested by everyone from PHDs at bike companies to independent PHDS, to independent bike mags to joe blow all unscientific on his local strava segments...

    Just because you choose to ignore something doesn't mean it doesn't exist. But don't let that stop you from enjoying your slower non aero ti bike.



    Sagan managed second on it I guess. "New" is subjective though as the sprint frame has been around for a few years, the only new part being the disc brakes. :p

    Good correction, thanks. The frame is not new, my bad, the frame being raced at this level is new. I misplaced my new.
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    That's caused by low spoke count wheels with a stiff rim.

    Actually, I've had carbon fiber Cannondale and BMC frames that would flex a 32 spoke aluminum wheel into the brake pads all of the time. The seat/chain stays would flex excessively when out of the saddle. Great ride when cruising around, but when you needed to apply power they worked against you. Same wheelset in another frame would work just fine (same tire clearance). Where they chose to make the frame stiff affected how it performed.
  • 01-14-2019
    PBL450
    The takeaway is that it’s expensive and it’s just not that good? If there was some clear performance advantage then someone would be using it. Hell, Sky has no budget limits and lives on “marginal gains.” If there was any incremental advantage they’d be riding it. At that level, no one is leaving an edge on the table. I’ve never ridden Ti and I’m sure it has its merits, they just obviously aren’t falling into the performance category.
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Aluminum makes a good crit frame because it's cheap (crash replacement) and you can get the required stiffness for the constant effort spikes in a weight that is acceptable. It's why the CAAD and Smartweld frames are so popular. It's not a big leap for this particular race. I think it's cool that he would do it.

    Given the choice, I don't think Sagan would opt for an aluminum frame by any manufacturer over the current options he has in carbon fiber for normal World Tour Races. While the geometry certainly plays into this, material does matter over a four hour race.
  • 01-14-2019
    cxwrench
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post
    Actually, I've had carbon fiber Cannondale and BMC frames that would flex a 32 spoke aluminum wheel into the brake pads all of the time. The seat/chain stays would flex excessively when out of the saddle. Great ride when cruising around, but when you needed to apply power they worked against you. Same wheelset in another frame would work just fine (same tire clearance). Where they chose to make the frame stiff affected how it performed.

    Explain this please. If you put energy into a frame and make it flex where does the energy go? There are only 2 things that can happen( I'm pretty sure @asgelle would know for sure)...let's see if you get them right.
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by PBL450 View Post
    The takeaway is that it’s expensive and it’s just not that good? If there was some clear performance advantage then someone would be using it. Hell, Sky has no budget limits and lives on “marginal gains.” If there was any incremental advantage they’d be riding it. At that level, no one is leaving an edge on the table. I’ve never ridden Ti and I’m sure it has its merits, they just obviously aren’t falling into the performance category.

    From a performance standpoint, Ti can be made to perform really well. Steel can too, as can aluminum. You can build any of these materials into a very respectable race bike. That said, each has its own set of trade-offs when you're seeking performance, Maybe it's weight. Maybe it's comfort. Maybe it's cost.

    At this moment, carbon is the most infinitely tune-able material for frame design. It's also cheaper to experiment with different layups within an existing mold to achieve a desired result that can be replicated time after time. Metal bikes rely much more heavily on the skill and knowledge of the builder (machinist, welder...) to ensure a predictable outcome.
  • 01-14-2019
    cxwrench
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post
    From a performance standpoint, Ti can be made to perform really well. Steel can too, as can aluminum. You can build any of these materials into a very respectable race bike. That said, each has its own set of trade-offs when you're seeking performance, Maybe it's weight. Maybe it's comfort. Maybe it's cost.

    At this moment, carbon is the most infinitely tune-able material for frame design. It's also cheaper to experiment with different layups within an existing mold to achieve a desired result that can be replicated time after time. Metal bikes rely much more heavily on the skill and knowledge of the builder (machinist, welder...) to ensure a predictable outcome.

    ^This^
  • 01-14-2019
    Alaska Mike
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cxwrench View Post
    Explain this please. If you put energy into a frame and make it flex where does the energy go? There are only 2 things that can happen( I'm pretty sure @asgelle would know for sure)...let's see if you get them right.

    In these cases, straight into the brake pads (friction), thanks to the flexible nature of the carbon layup.

    Believe me, I love that wound-up feeling of a well-made steel or titanium frame. I seriously doubt much energy is converted to heat in the case of a bicycle frame, but there are likely parasitic characteristics that differ between each material.
  • 01-14-2019
    cxwrench
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Alaska Mike View Post
    In these cases, straight into the brake pads (friction), thanks to the flexible nature of the carbon layup.

    Believe me, I love that wound-up feeling of a well-made steel or titanium frame. I seriously doubt much energy is converted to heat in the case of a bicycle frame, but there are likely parasitic characteristics that differ between each material.

    Read my question again. When the frame flexes w/ the initial pedal input...what happens next? You're putting energy into the frame. No...the energy does not go into the brake pads. We're only talking about the frame here. Nothing else. Remember your physics class?