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  1. #1
    Senior Member Old School's Avatar
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    Movin' up to Carbon...

    I finally pulled the trigger and picked up a barely-used Trek 5500 OCLV frame/fork on eBay. Friendly discussions with the seller about other available parts he had resulted in a professionally-built bike with all Dura-Ace components, FSA compact crank, and Mavic Ksyrium SSC wheels. A bit more than my original budget with these high-end components, it should be a real looker and one sweet ride.

    P.S. Now I might have to change my BF user name!
    Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW! WHAT A RIDE!"

  2. #2
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Meet the new school. Not like the Old School. Enjoy your new ride!
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  3. #3
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Nice bike. You will need to change the name
    =============================================================
    My cancer updates:
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    Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.
    -- Antonio Smith

  4. #4
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    What kind of pedals? We all get to rag on your pedal choice, no matter what it is.

  5. #5
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Wrong saddle. Oh, you haven't told us what saddle is on it? Well, whatever it is, I'm sure it's wrong.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  6. #6
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Do you have jerseys to match that new bike yet? You know, the ones that go OVER your bibs?
    Visit my blog! The Leadership Almanac
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  7. #7
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Digital Gee
    Do you have jerseys to match that new bike yet? You know, the ones that go OVER your bibs?
    Ya mean the jersey goes OVER the bibs and not the other way around. No wonder that 20-something woman I rode with tonight kept looking at me like I was a piece of moldy cheese. Wait a minute. I wasn't wearing my bibs.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  8. #8
    I need more cowbell. Digital Gee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jet Travis
    Ya mean the jersey goes OVER the bibs and not the other way around. No wonder that 20-something woman I rode with tonight kept looking at me like I was a piece of moldy cheese. Wait a minute. I wasn't wearing my bibs.
    Actually, she looked at you like you were a piece of balding cheese, but let's not quibble.
    Visit my blog! The Leadership Almanac
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  9. #9
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    Congrats on the new bike, you're gonna love it.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Old School's Avatar
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    Whoa -- tough crowd tonight! Thanks for the encouraging words on my purchase. I think I will keep my choice of pedals and saddle a secret for now. Let's just say "clipless" and "titanium gel" and let it go with that!
    Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW! WHAT A RIDE!"

  11. #11
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    Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks! I hope you find the ride to be as sweet and smooth as freshly picked corn on the cob dipped in butter. In doing a little checking this week, I noticed I ride my carbon bike about three days a week, my 1990s steel about twice a week, and my alum. only once a week.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  12. #12
    Senior Member further's Avatar
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    I started riding carbon this spring and absolutly love it. I kept my Trek 520 just in case, but I haven't touched it since getting the new one.

  13. #13
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Looks like the second round of new bikes is starting. Should be a market on the forum for all these old secondhand worn out bikes that are not going to get used much in the future.

    Watch out for those Krysiums- Make certain you have good brakes with them- They put 4 mph on normal wheels.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  14. #14
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    I just assembled a used Calfee Tetra Pro, so that's my first carbon bike ever. Started with a 531 Peugeot in '68, progressed through steel, aluminum and titanium over the years, but this is my first carbon bike!

    Seems to ride well, but I'll be using it on Ride Around the Bear this weekend (101 miles, 9,400 ft. of climbing), so that will be the first true test. The group is the Shimano compact, the pedals are SPD-L and the saddle is a Serfas. Not sure of the model, but I call it the Prostrate Protector (i.e. huge cut-out in the center).

    Best Regs,
    Rick / OCRR

  15. #15
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    I had that same frame a few years ago and it was the smoothest ride I've had to date. Good choice in going ahead with the upgraded components as well.......you would made that upgrade eventually so why not do it now and save the additional dollars on changing out components!!

  16. #16
    Happy Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR
    I just assembled a used Calfee Tetra Pro, so that's my first carbon bike ever. Started with a 531 Peugeot in '68, progressed through steel, aluminum and titanium over the years, but this is my first carbon bike!
    I find this an interesting post. I thought I wanted carbon, but after riding several carbon bikes, the impression I had was sitting on a 2x4" board mounted on steel wheels. The LBS owners titanium was sitting in the corner and I tried it. Comfortable, smooth. I was hooked--I had one built for me.

    Keep us posted on what you think of the carbon as opposed to the ti.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Red Baron's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Old School]I finally pulled the trigger and picked up a barely-used Trek 5500 OCLV frame/fork on eBay. Friendly discussions with the seller about other available parts he had resulted in a professionally-built bike with all Dura-Ace components, FSA compact crank, and Mavic Ksyrium SSC wheels. A bit more than my original budget with these high-end components, it should be a real looker and one sweet ride.
    QUOTE]


    I'm trying to talk myself out of one of these as a back-up. I LOVE my Madone. I envy your wheels.

    Keep your name, if that's were your heart is.
    **Fate is a fickle thing, and in the end the true measure of a person is not fate itself, but how they master it**

  18. #18
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by card
    Keep us posted on what you think of the carbon as opposed to the ti.
    I have ridden Ti from Feb. 2000 to present, and so far the carbon is a softer ride (I tried it on one really annoying stretch of pavement near my house), but more responsive and less flex than the Ti bike in sprints. My Ti bikes were both GT Edge (Triple Triange design) so pls. do not extrapolate too much due to the fact that they were Ti (with carbon forks, I should add).

    Plus, since I plan to use this bike for double centuries, the softer ride is funadmentally more important than the sprint-ability.

    But yes, I will report back after the century tomorrow!

    Best Regs,
    Rick / OCRR

  19. #19
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Okay, reporting back, post century:

    The Calfee has a much smoother ride than my Ti GT, and consequently I felt a lot less fatigued after the century. Yes, my legs still felt tired from the Eastern Sierra double the weekend before, and the carbon didn't seem to help that!

    Power wise, on the big climbs and esp. the climb from Big Bear to Onyx Summit (8,443 ft.) I did very well, i.e. the carbon seemed very efficient in the "no wasted power" sense. I even passed a friend of a friend who is much younger and usually a much better climber.

    Of course, I have no idea how much credit goes to carbon and how much to Craig Calfee, but the result is pretty wonderful! Another double-rider (who is probably ten years older than I am) rides a Calfee Dragonfly, and he told me that while he does love it, it probably wasn't worth the extra money over a Tetra Pro.

    But then, he finished the double almost two hours faster than me, so I'm pretty sure his motor is just lots better than mine too!

    Best Regs,
    Rick / OCRR

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    "Old School" is more a way of thinking than what one rides. Congratulations, OS! Just bought my first carbon fiber bike a couple of months ago. '06 Scott CR1 SL. Sixteen pounds of pure CF bliss, full DA, Ksyrium SL's and Speedplay X/2's. I love riding it. And my knees love the float of the Speedplays.

    I hope you get as much pleasure from yours as I have from mine. I don't doubt you will. Happy spinning!
    Last edited by VegaVixen; 06-10-07 at 10:10 PM.

  21. #21
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    As a material, carbon fiber has significantly better vibration damping qualities than titanium. Carbon fiber is increasingly being used in the manufacturing industry to dampen vibration in manufacturing processes. Many scientific papers & studies have been published on this topic. Such as:

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2007SPIE.6527E..27N

    CF's superior vibration damping is a key factor to its popularity in the aircraft industry.

    But whether any individual carbon or ti bike is better would be dependent upon the thickness of the tubes, the shape of the tubes, the geometry of the bike, etc. Also not all carbon fiber is alike, it can be manufactured to different specifications. Technically, I would think that if a company is very proficient at using either, that they should be able to build a smoother riding bike out of carbon fiber.

    Trek has invested a lot into CF R&D over the past several years. They use three different types of CF in their bikes.
    http://www2.trekbikes.com/madone/tec...formance/#more

    In my test rides of bikes in the $700-$1000 range, I've been very impressed by how much smoother some of the bikes that use CF forks and seat stays and/or seat posts were vs those that are all aluminum. The difference isn't a subtle one. I have no experience on a titanium bike.

    Here's a page on the benefits of carbon fiber as seen by Calfee Design:
    http://www.calfeedesign.com/whitepaper4.htm

  22. #22
    Senior Member
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    Very nice research, TB! Thank you!

    Anecdotally, I rode a 29-lb lugged steel bike on and off for over 20 years. Then started riding my new Scott CF roadbike in April. The difference is night and day. Perhaps if my older bike were a newer steel bike I might not notice this difference so much. That is, there may be a difference in the feel of steel from early 80s and the feel of steel today (overall lighter bikes).

    But the CF bike feels no worse, and even better, on the road. And, it's about half the weight. When I come to rough road, I simply stand slightly out of the saddle and move my body back a bit, as I would on my beater, and I see no significant difference. Except that I can now shift without going to the downtube. But that aside, I think the CF just feels better to me on the road, even with the greatly increased tire pressure (100psi vs 60-70psi). Just my two cents.

  23. #23
    tcs
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old School
    I finally pulled the trigger and picked up a barely-used Trek 5500 OCLV frame/fork...
    Seen the new, completely redesigned 2008 Trek Madone? You're still old school! LOL!

    The Trek OCLV carbon fiber race bikes debuted in 1992 - 15 years ago! They ushered in the carbon era at the Tour of France - an a BIG way - and were the weapon of choice of the biggest American name in international cycle racing since Zimmerman and Taylor. They existed during a low point in American road cycling, making them comparatively rare.

    There's a web site that tracks changes to the bikes thru 2005:

    www.chainreactionbicycles.com/oclvhistory.htm

    For '06 the head tube and top tube became one piece.

    Note: the 2001-2003 5900 models used a proprietary fork.

    IMO the top collectable models would be the early '92 without the chain keeper ring, the 1999 "production bike just like Lance won on" and the '01 designed-for-Lance 5900 model. The bikes - and period appropriate components - should continue to drop in price for several years to come - watch the market and get in on the ground floor!

    Best,
    Tom
    "When man first set woman on two wheels with a pair of pedals, did he know, I wonder, that he had rent the veil of the harem in twain? A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Typewriter Girl, 1899.

    "Every so often a bird gets up and flies some place it's drawn to. I don't suppose it could tell you why, but it does it anyway." Ian Hibell, 1934-2008

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