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Old 11-01-07, 06:45 AM   #1
Chris0381
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What does Alpha SL aluminum frame mean

I have a 2004 Trek 4300 used and it has a Alpha SL aluminum frame that they boast about. But for someone not experienced with frames, what is the significance of Alpha SL Alum. as opposed to Diply-Doo-Da Aluminum if you see what I mean.

I have a feeling the alpha has something to do with sterio-chemistry.

or

metallurgically, "alpha" means one of the phases present in the solid
state. e.g. "alpha brass". this is opposed to "alpha/beta brass" which
has two phases present.

I have experience in some metals calssifications, but saying a frame has Alpha SL Alum is like speaking a foreign language to me.

Looks like a gimmick for a high tech way of saying 6061 aluminum.

How long does this frame usually last under normal intermediate trail riding conditions (no jumps just bumps)? Im swapping out components and dont want to spend too much if the frame wont last.

Should I be concerned about the scruffs and scrapes under the frame near the BB-Shell? (I've filed them smooth.)

Last edited by Chris0381; 11-01-07 at 07:27 AM.
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Old 11-01-07, 10:49 AM   #2
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Looks like a gimmick for a high tech way of saying 6061 aluminum.

Should I be concerned about the scruffs and scrapes under the frame near the BB-Shell? (I've filed them smooth.)
i agree i, think it's more a marketing thing/gimmick for trek than any real difference in tubing.

i wouldn't worry too much about the scrapes on the bb shell. it's a mtn bike it's supposed to get beat up. if you break the frame you'll just get another, that's the way it is with mtn bikes. the bb shell is pretty thick and you've probably got a cartridge bb in there so there is a lot of material there to keep the frame together

your frame should last a good,long time, my cannondale road frame lasted nearly 15 years of hard racing and training. it would still be going strong if it wasn't for the truck that ran me over and bent the frame.
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Old 11-01-07, 04:19 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply zzzzzz. Ill give it a lot of care.
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Old 11-01-07, 04:37 PM   #4
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Thanks for the reply zzzzzz. Ill give it a lot of care.
That was kind of harsh. What response were you expecting exactly?

Trek uses their 'Alpha SL' Alum on entry level road (under $1k) and mountain bikes (under $500). From what I've heard, the SL stands for 'Super Light' and the whole label is just a Trek marketing gimmick to make it sound unique. You are way over-thinking the term if you are trying to read something scientific out of 'Alpha SL'.

There are a lot nicer (and lighter) frames out there, but even lower-end Trek stuff is decent and plenty durable.
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Old 11-02-07, 05:06 AM   #5
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That was kind of harsh. What response were you expecting exactly?
That was harsh. I liked his response and was thanking him. ZZZZZZZZZZ was sorta a nickname for his nickname.

I guess you didn't think I was that easy to please.

Making a product sound scientific when its not is quite hokey IMO; But thats the Trek or industry marketing mentality for ya.
Still wondering why my 1970's GI-Joe could never reach the moon.

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Old 11-02-07, 12:47 PM   #6
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That was harsh. I liked his response and was thanking him. ZZZZZZZZZZ was sorta a nickname for his nickname.

I guess you didn't think I was that easy to please.

Making a product sound scientific when its not is quite hokey IMO; But thats the Trek or industry marketing mentality for ya.
Still wondering why my 1970's GI-Joe could never reach the moon.
My bad...I thought you where being sarcastic and 'sleeping through his response' or something like that.
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Old 11-02-07, 05:00 PM   #7
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Definitely not Dtrain. I have a lot to learn from the members here. And I appreciate any little assistance with understanding the MTB ins and outs.
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