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Old 02-24-13, 14:38
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Originally Posted by 86TDFWinner View Post
Not that they ever left mind you, just that alot of the big manufacturers went w/Carbon composite frames & the masses followed. Anyways, the latest issue of Bicycling Magazine(very good by the way, their "Buyers Guide" issue) has a nice article about how aluminum bikes are making their way back. I don't know how soon before we see alot more of them on the tour, but I've always liked aluminum frames, and wouldn't mind seeing this resurgence. Any thoughts on this? Do you see aluminum bikes coming back in a mjor way, or is it going to be here and there?
Well, carbon and glue are cheap, the margins are huge. Actually welding metal together takes skills that most of the Asian assemblers/frame companies don't have. All about margin and the ease at which carbon can be shaped and whiz-banged up and then hyped.

Metal frames never 'left', many are still made but the margins will prevent them from being mainstream any longer, IMHO.

Carbon is everywhere, carbon is boring and most ride like crappola but 'win on Sunday, sell on Monday', is alive and well.
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Old 02-24-13, 16:09
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A couple overlooked aspects of the comeback of aluminum is the rising labor rates in Asia and the cost of transportation, the big brands have started the migration to South America for cheap mass production. Another one would be that it's a catch 22 for the bike industry which by nature cares about the environment to be caught up chasing the cheap carbon dream to fill the lower tiers of their lines when one carbon frame takes 4-5 times the amount of energy to produce than a steel or aluminum frame, recycling is virtually impossible with carbon and almost always ends up in a landfill, don't need to tell most of you how toxic those epoxies are. Metal frames are easily turned over and recycled, much easier on the environment.

Carbon still rules on race day, love racing mine, and there will be no resurgence of Aluminum back in to the Pro Tour. At local club level?... hell yes!
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Old 02-24-13, 16:30
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Originally Posted by BroDeal View Post
NAHBS gets bigger every year. I think there could be a trend at the high end to go back to small builders. The prices are not unreasonable compared to what Canontrekalized is charging for their stock frames. Also gravel racing and cyclocross is growing rapidly so that will influence future trends.
Fat tire road bikes all over the show this weekend, bout to head down there for one last day in a blizzard. Only makes sense, not only to spread out and get out of traffic, but the conditions of most paved roads these days make gravel I ride feel like glass. Where's all that DOT tax money going eh?
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Old 02-24-13, 16:52
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........................
the fact that the raw materials to composite Carbon exist mainly in Asia, which currently has the main production of Carbon frames too. China for example applied recently new laws that limit supply of raw materials to other countries, controling this way the competition and the production prices. .....................
Carbon fiber cloths and tapes is readily available in the USA and Europe and so are the epoxies needed to fabricate carbon fiber structures whether it be bike frames, skis, tennis rackets, autoparts, aircraft parts, etc.
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Old 02-24-13, 17:21
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Originally Posted by fatsprintking View Post
In Australia they are cheap and outstanding value - better to buy a 105 equipped bike and put the bits on my CAAD 4 training bike and then build the CAAD10 up the way I want as a race bike.

I always stuck with Aluminum - for me it is the best "feeling" material for what I want in a stiff sprinting frame. CAAD10 is about the best you can get for a alloy frame and really more than almost anyone really needs.
Caad 4 was the deadest and non compliant frame I ever road. I hate that dead feeling.

however out of the saddle the lateral stiffness was superior and perhaps part of the feeling you enjoy

are the stays on the 10 a little more vertically compliant?
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Old 02-24-13, 18:50
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Caad 4 was the deadest and non compliant frame I ever road. I hate that dead feeling.

however out of the saddle the lateral stiffness was superior and perhaps part of the feeling you enjoy

are the stays on the 10 a little more vertically compliant?
CAAD 10 seems to ride less harshly while still having that stiff solid feeling of other CAAD's.

My CAAD 4 is nice to ride, but I am 85kg and ride handbuilt ambrosio box section rims. The early caads are very sensitive to wheel choice and I can see if you were lighter and had a harsh set of wheels they would not seem nice. Front ends on the caad4 if you have one of the threadless steerer types is very good and very solid with the nice time fork - just a bit heavier than new stuff but very solid feel.

Last edited by fatsprintking; 02-24-13 at 19:15.
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Old 02-24-13, 21:41
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Originally Posted by avanti View Post
Carbon fiber cloths and tapes is readily available in the USA and Europe and so are the epoxies needed to fabricate carbon fiber structures whether it be bike frames, skis, tennis rackets, autoparts, aircraft parts, etc.
I agree but these are not the raw materials I meant. The substances for making carbon fiber in the first place and the epoxies etc are all produced in Asia and some of them in China.
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  #18  
Old 02-25-13, 03:53
perpetuum mobile perpetuum mobile is offline
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Default aluminum is not coming back

Aluminum and carbon both are great materials for frames but aluminum bikes will not return in the high-end market. It is not because carbon is better. As others mentioned before, it is probably easier and cheaper to produce carbon frames. Therefore, big companies like Giant, Spec, Trek will keep marketing carbon as a superior material.

I am tired all that BS about "lateral stiffens an vertical compliance", "unique carbon fiber layout schedule", "XX% increase in stiffness and XX% more aerodynamic".
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Old 02-25-13, 04:38
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Originally Posted by alitogata View Post
Whyyyyyy???
Why? Well lets see you love the Cannondales, but don't they use a Carbon Fork? If you liked aluminum so much why not get an aluminum fork, you don't like carbon so toss it!

Here's a true Aluminum bike for you Aluminum users and cheap too! Hey look its made in China, what a coincidence! Looks like they actually taught a few Chinese to tig weld



Buy it now! http://www.ebay.com/itm/FOCUS-AERO-A...item416fdbe81f

Also, that's just the first one I found I'm sure there's a ChinaDale if you look hard enough but I will leave that to you Aluminum Lovers, I don't want to take that pleasure away from you's.

PS: Get dental insurance and stock up on gel bar wrap.
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Old 02-25-13, 05:13
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Originally Posted by ElChingon View Post
Why? Well lets see you love the Cannondales, but don't they use a Carbon Fork? If you liked aluminum so much why not get an aluminum fork, you don't like carbon so toss it!
I still have a pre-Trek Klein (original Quantum) with an SR or Sakai bonded AL fork. It is no longer built up but that baby was smooth. The funny thing is the tubes in the main triangle seem to be the same diameter as the tubes in my Moots' front triangle, which is way different than the stove pipes Cannondale used.
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