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  1. #1
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    Aluminum or Carbon? Thoughts?

    Looking into getting a new ride and I'm having trouble wrapping my head around a carbon frame. I have a 99 Klein Quantum and it has a carbon fork (blades). That bothered me but I've had no problems with it.

    I'm big, heavy and like to go fast. Roads around here are rough. I'm leaning towards a CAAD (in fact I have $$ down on one) but don't want to regret my choice.

    Not too worried about speed on this bike as the Klein will be put back to race trim for my fast rides, but this one will be my work horse.

    Any thoughts?
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

  2. #2
    Senior Member lsberrios1's Avatar
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    Even though I have never ridden one, I am sure the CAAD is a wonderful bike. That being said I think carbon has a better ride quality even in rough roads. It is stiffer but it doesnt mean it's going to break under power. I've heard the CAAD 10 probably rivals the expensive carbon frames but I am just a big lover of carbon. Roads around here in Atlanta get rough as well and my carbon roubaix rides way better than my aluminum felt.
    Cat 6 going on PRO....

  3. #3
    LBKA punkncat's Avatar
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    There are loads of carbon vs threads on this forum, so if you do a search I am sure you will find every reason in the book for and against. With that said, if you do go carbon I would suggest going with a well known, reputable brand that is known for good warranty service, new. I only suggest doing so due to an issue with my own carbon bike, not because I think its going to "asplode" or anything.
    Any time people ask me personally about issues with carbon, I suggest that they watch any of the major bicycling grand tours (etc) and watch how the pros ride and crash their bikes....
    One Foot Less

  4. #4
    Just Plain Slow PhotoJoe's Avatar
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    I'm not saying "use the search function" in a snotty way. We're always happy to discuss things. However, if you use the search function (advanced search...the regular one stinks here), you will get hours of reading on this subject. I hope it helps. Let us know what you decide. And my .02, though I've never ridden one, I do hear the same thing that the CAAD 10 rivals better carbon frames, and exceeds the ride of cheap carbon.

    http://www.bikeforums.net/search.php?searchid=6724899
    If at first you don't succeed, Skydiving is not the sport for you!

  5. #5
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    CAAD10 or see if they have a '12 supersix 5 for about $100-200 more. Both are the same geo, same parts, same wheels. I love my super6

  6. #6
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    Companies don't put bad products on the market for fear of lawsuits. That doesn't mean there aren't failures from time to time. Life is a risk. I doubt that you will have buyers remorse with your choice. Its a proven bike and will serve you well. For me, being a way south of the TdF kinda rider, anything with wheels works pretty darn good!
    I think its disgusting and terrible how people treat Lance Armstrong, especially after winning 7 Tour de France Titles while on drugs!

    I can't even find my bike when I'm on drugs. -Willie N.

  7. #7
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    I did a search and have been researching everywhere for about two months. I just wanted to get some fellow "fatties" point of view on this. No offence. I guess my biggest worry is in the bb area. I've heard of some of them getting loose/sloppy on carbon frames. Not really concerned about denting, wear and tear... as every time I take my Klein in somewhere they comment on how it could have just come off the showroom floor. I'm concerned about how they will hold up to a larger rider.
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

  8. #8
    Senior Member catonec's Avatar
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=xreZdUBqpJs

    I love this vid. carbon frame will be fine. wheels will fail before the frame so get a strong set.

    If you can afford carbon go for it, you wont be disappointed.
    2010 Kestrel RT900SL, 800k carbon, chorus/record, speedplay, zonda
    1997 Trek ZX6000, 6061w/manitou spyder, xt/xtr, time atac

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99Klein View Post
    I did a search and have been researching everywhere for about two months. I just wanted to get some fellow "fatties" point of view on this. No offence. I guess my biggest worry is in the bb area. I've heard of some of them getting loose/sloppy on carbon frames. Not really concerned about denting, wear and tear... as every time I take my Klein in somewhere they comment on how it could have just come off the showroom floor. I'm concerned about how they will hold up to a larger rider.
    Have no fear, you'll be fine. There's very little worry these days that a carbon frame will be an issue and you'll like the nicer ride. The only carbon bike component that you'll see with weight limits are certain carbon wheelsets. Carbon itself is extremely strong and can be built to accommodate any weight load.

    Remember that, at the heart of it, carbon is a composite. Composites have largely replaced traditional metals for loads of things these days, including modern commercial airliners. Given the strength testing that they have to undergo to prove air worthiness in turbulence, you can easily see how well-designed composites are as good, if not better, than standard metals. You can throw more turbulence at a properly-designed commercial airliner made entirely of composites than you could ever handle as a flyer with no worries at all about structural integrity.
    Last edited by cafzali; 11-30-12 at 12:13 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    Wow!

    Quote Originally Posted by catonec View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=xrezdubqpjs

    i love this vid. Carbon frame will be fine. Wheels will fail before the frame so get a strong set.

    If you can afford carbon go for it, you wont be disappointed.
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

  11. #11
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    the carbon layup of that nomad is completely different then what you'll find on a roadie. But its nice to show you the tensile strength of the fibers and a well engineered product.

  12. #12
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    I'm big, heavy and like to go fast. Roads around here are rough.
    .. Guess you are only Missing Alpine Climbs and Descents..

    Note: the Pros only use a frame and bike for a few Months, and then get a new one,
    maybe at least the next spring.

    You may anticipate doing the same , if you want to ride that kind of Kit.

    Now a Custom Builder like Calfee in Cal, will add more material to the layup
    when Building the frame , to make it for your build and riding style.

    Mass produced stuff IDK who their model rider is , probably light strong Pro's.

    Trek's Lifetime Warrantee to new owners, may be the thing . to consider ..

    their new Domane attempts to soften the ride by an elastomer
    where the seat tube passes behind the top tube, and between the chainstays..

    An interesting Design.. they tried An elastomer monostay in Madones ,
    for Roubaix cobbled roads , now they went with that design..
    will see if they put any under the Next team's spring classics Riders.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 11-30-12 at 01:53 PM.

  13. #13
    Senior Member VegasVic's Avatar
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    +1 for carbon

    If your still apprehensive, check out Ti.

  14. #14
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 99Klein View Post
    I did a search and have been researching everywhere for about two months. I just wanted to get some fellow "fatties" point of view on this. No offence. I guess my biggest worry is in the bb area..

    OK, fellow fatty riding alminum at 230 lbs, BB area. Second alum frame chainstay aluminum area at 240 lbs.

    That's 2 dings agains aluminum. Both broke after 13,500 miles.

    Riding full cabon now. Less than 3000 miles so I'll post a durability report after another 10,000 miles.


    ....and I don't even like to go fast.




  15. #15
    Donde Esta Mi Pantalones? kinetic's Avatar
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    If your roads are rough I would take a good look at the Trek Domane. I'm 268lbs and mine rides great. There are some really bad country roads, bad chipseal and poorly repaired potholes. It really feels great. I bought the 4.0 for $1899, full carbon tiagra. The saddle sucks like a dyson but beyond that I am very happy.

  16. #16
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    "Sucks like a Dyson " love it!!!

    I'll ride some carbon and see. I guess I just enjoy my aluminum Klein so much it makes me lean that direction.

    13,500. That's over 6000 more than mine!
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

  17. #17
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    Another fatty here at approx. 250lbs. My work horse training frame is a 63cm Caad4. I have no complaints with the bike. And, unlike some alu frames, it hasn't yet cracked at the BB or driveside chainstay.

    If I could afford it, my next bike would be carbon. I'm not concerned with carbon strength on any but the lightest of frames. However, I don't like the failure mode of carbon, which can be somewhat catastrophic if/when it does fail.

    I will say that I really appreciate the absorbtion qualities of my alu frame compared to my wifes carbon. She previously road a Caad3 and we both confirm that vibration is much more noticable on her carbon Colnago.

    My best recommendation is to not worry about strength or durability, sence it sounds as though you take good car of your bikes, but, go test ride the two most likely contenders and decide for yourself which ride qualities you prefer.
    Birth Certificate, Passport, Marriage License Driver's License and Residency Permit all say I'm a Fred. I guess there's no denying it.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Big Pete 1982's Avatar
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    Well, I bought my first road bike when I weighed around 320 lbs. I test rode quite a few bikes. Carbon and aluminum. In the end, I bought a CAAD9 with all Tiagra components. I rode the crap out of it and loved it. Then I got all gear snobby and wanted better components so I sold that bike and got a CAAD10 with all Ultegra. I was out the door with the Ultegra loaded CAAD10 for around $1400 brand new. The carbon bikes in that price range with those components just didn't seem as nice to me as well as not being as well reviewed on the internet (since the internet never lies!). The jump in price to the carbon bikes that felt like velvet (the Specialized Roubaix felt pretty darn sweet!) didn't seem worth it to me at the time. Plus, when talking about aluminum frames, the CAAD is pretty much what EVERY aluminum frame is compared to and some carbon frames as well.

  19. #19
    Senior Member
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    Been riding the 1986 aluminum Cannondale I raced back in the day ever since. I "blossomed" to 265 during the nineties and am now down to 220. I use 177.5 Campy cranks and do my best to try to break things but it still flies, still feels stiff (a good thing). The corrosion's starting to concern me a bit though.

    That said, I've been given approval from the home "Finance Department" to move to a new ride and I'm anxiously awaiting better availability of the Domane 4.5's.

    C.

  20. #20
    Senior Member adrien's Avatar
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    Well, only because nobody has brought it up yet -- have you considered steel? Jamis makes some gorgeous models...or you could go IF, or full custom.

    Looky:

    http://www.myjamis.com/SSP%20Applica...cat_grp=road_7
    Last edited by adrien; 12-01-12 at 04:00 PM.
    "how do you know you can't swim until you have drowned?"

  21. #21
    Donde Esta Mi Pantalones? kinetic's Avatar
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    I came from a steel frame to the Domane. The Domane is smoother and much, much more responsive.

    It's possible new design steel bikes are more stiff, mine was an 80's design. All I can say is that the carbon Domane soaks up bumps, jitters, and road texture and get's up and goes instantly when I lay into it. The first few days were actually a little disconcerting because there was no lag when getting out of the saddle.

    The rear end decoupler really works on the Domane. They are popping up everywhere on rides around here.

    I solved the saddle issue with a Cobb V-Flow Plus. Ugly as sin, but it works for me.

  22. #22
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    I actually use to like the ride of steel, but the small tubes are just too "retro" looking for me.

    Wen't to the LBS and road this weekend. I'm sort of set on Cannondale or Fuji. The only Fuji dealer around here is Scheels and they don't stock in the winter. I also like the Scott's but nothing in stock that really "grabs" me, so...

    Road the Super Six 6, the CAAD 10 5 and a 2012 CAAD 8 5 and I'm starting to think maybe I'm just an aluminum guy????

    The super Six felt "dead" when riding. Like no real input from the road. When you clime a hill (standing) it fell like the rear wheel was "flexing" or something that wasn't there with the other two.

    Love the looks of the 10 in team colors but no real difference between that and the 8. If they wouldn't have had the 2012 left over, it would have been an easy choice. $300.00 more for the CAAD 10. Better wheels, crank, breaks and probably frame. However, the 2012 CAAD 8 was only $1000.00 and weights a mear 1.4lbs more (not the 3lbs Cannondale claimss.) Since I'll be using my own wheels, I went with the CAAD 8.

    Wish I would have had them weigh the Super Six as it would be interesting to know where it stood. The 10 was 19lbs (slightly heavier than my stock Klein.)

    Thanks for all the advice, now I'm more worried about aluminum then I ever was
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

  23. #23
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice, now I'm more worried about aluminum then I ever was
    I'm big, heavy and like to go fast. Roads around here are rough.
    you may go thru light race frames faster than a lighter rider, just realize that and don't get attached to any one bike,
    but to the act of riding itself.. and be realistic..
    I actually use to like the ride of steel, but the small tubes are just too "retro" looking for me.
    hire a custom built frame, if you get a builder that will make it out of oversize tubing,
    it will also better resist the weight on the saddle and the forces applied to the pedals.
    Though It will be heavier as a result.

    Know that using steel lends itself better to small hand builders.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-03-12 at 10:57 AM.

  24. #24
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    my super6-5 was 18.2 stock w/o peds. Porky wheels and other OEM parts. But it lightened up pretty quick with SRAM parts, 3T cockpit and different wheels.

    Congrats on the CAAD8, you'll enjoy it and if the alum fails, you have a nice lifetime warranty to back up your purchase.

  25. #25
    Senior Member 99Klein's Avatar
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    That's is precisely why I'm getting this bike. I'm attached to my Klein and it's obviously irreplaceable. It will be nice just to take the Klein out once in a while.
    When you argue with an idiot, from a bystanders point of view, it may be hard to discern which is the idiot. (dis·cern: Verb - Perceive or recognize)

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