Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-26-04, 11:25 PM   #1
alanbikehouston
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 5,250
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
In the world of road bikes, many folks are convinced there is an easy way to identify the best road bike: the "lightest bike is the best bike". People who think "lighter is better" may think that there is no reason to consider buying a bike with a steel frame and steel fork.

Check out Amy Abele's Rivendell. The bike comes in at under 19 pounds total. The frame and fork combined come in at under five pounds. And, the it has the "classic" feel, ride, and beauty of a lugged steel frame and steel fork. This bike shows that even a "weight fanatic" can enjoy the "steel" experience.

www.Rivendellbicycles.com Look for the "link" on the right to "Our lightest Rivendell ever": Amy's Rivendell. The paint and details around the lugs are terrific. The two tone paint around the head tube lugs is especially nice. A work of art in steel.

Grant Peterson says this particular frame was designed for a rider weighing less than 160 pounds. He "mixes and matches" the tubes on each bike around the weight and the riding style of the owner. So, a 250 pound rider might ask for a bike weighing more than 19 pounds.

By way of comparison, a 1976 Schwinn Paramount Road Racing model weighed 23 pounds, and the touring version of the Paramount Road Racing model weighed 26 pounds. The Paramounts were among the lightest bikes made in America at that time.

The Rivendell at 19 pounds is NOT a racing bike. It is designed as an everyday bike. The components are selected to be reliable and durable. If someone does not need "reliable and durable", they can probably shave off another couple of pounds. Steel can be as light as you wanna be.

Waterford, and other companies, are also building superb bikes with steel frames and forks. Steel remains an attactive choice for making bikes, especially for riders whose goals center on ride quality, feel, and longevity. Some of my steel framed bikes are twenty years old. I hope my godson will be riding them someday, and perhaps his son will enjoy riding them a couple of decades after that.

Last edited by alanbikehouston; 10-27-04 at 10:00 PM.
alanbikehouston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-04, 11:30 PM   #2
forum*rider
Work hard, Play hard
 
forum*rider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: San Diego, California
Bikes: Cannondale super V 500, Bianchi Piaggio(hopefully getting a new road bike when I get some money)
Posts: 2,596
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
18.5lbs is like a lead weight to the serious weight weenies.


But for the rest of it, it's plenty light. Looks really nice too!
forum*rider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 05:11 AM   #3
Shadco
Resident PIA
 
Shadco's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Ahnold, MD
Bikes: Litespeed Arenberg, Huffy Strider, Trek 4700, Gunnar Roadie
Posts: 320
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
In the world of road bikes, many folks are convinced there is an easy way to identify the best road bike: the "lightest bike is the best bike". People who think "lighter is better" may think that there is no reason to consider a bike with a steel frame and steel fork.

Check out Amy Abele's Rivendell. Under 19 pounds total. The frame and fork combined come in at under five pounds. And, the "classic" feel, ride, and beauty of a lugged steel frame. Amy's bike shows that even a "weight weenie" can enjoy the "steel" experience.

www.Rivendellbicycles.com Look for the "link" on the right to "Our lightest Rivendell ever": Amy's Rivendell. The paint and details around the lugs are terrific. The two tone paint around the head tube lugs is especially nice. A work of art in steel.

Great but... It's a tiny frame built for a 120lb rider hardly a tool for everyman. I like steel and also own an 18.5 pound steel ride but am not about to embark on a campaign to convince everyone that it's right for them. Rivendell's doctrine is kinda cool but I gave up on it for me since there wasn't anyway I could get to my goal using their stuff and it carries a stiff premium to boot.

18.5lbs

Last edited by Shadco; 10-27-04 at 05:24 AM.
Shadco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 05:22 AM   #4
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc
Posts: 4,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Lance's 58 cm Trek is 15 lbs and way stiffer.
galen_52657 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 07:14 AM   #5
MtnMan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Big Bear
Bikes: Fondriest & Serotta
Posts: 210
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
alanbikehouston -

I want to like you, but I swear, you are like a broke record.
MtnMan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 07:41 AM   #6
531Aussie
Aluminium Crusader :-)
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Bikes:
Posts: 9,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by forum*rider
18.5lbs is like a lead weight to the serious weight weenies
WHAAAAAAAT

I figure anything under 19lbs is an absolute feather
531Aussie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 07:43 AM   #7
shokhead
05 Roubaix Comp Double
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: So Cal
Bikes: 2012 Trek Madone 6.2
Posts: 4,659
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
03 Fuji Marseille 853 Steel 18.8 lbs.
shokhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 07:54 AM   #8
531Aussie
Aluminium Crusader :-)
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Bikes:
Posts: 9,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by shokhead
03 Fuji Marseille 853 Steel 18.8 lbs.
Yep, feather. That's 8.54kg....light!

Idurain was winning Tours on bikes that were about 9kg (19.8lbs):
http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech.php?...ures/pinarello

Check out his stem arrangement:
http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech.php?...Giro-Pin_93_11
531Aussie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 08:54 AM   #9
CycleSamms
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Nashville, TN
Bikes: Ross Gran Tour (for now)
Posts: 14
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The Bike of the Week section of the Steelman web site (www.steelmancycles.com) has several examples of full sized (55-60cm) Dedacciai steel bikes under 18lbs and a couple under 17 lbs. Of course, you pay the premium for a Steelman frame, but these bike are both feather-light and works of art.

I'm saving my pennies (a whole bunch of them).
CycleSamms is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 09:01 AM   #10
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc
Posts: 4,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by CycleSamms
Of course, you pay the premium for a Steelman frame, but these bike are both feather-light and works of art.
Works of art belong in a museum. I ride my bike and it gets all dirty and covered with road crud. Lets take one of your 'works of art' steel frames and an off-the-shelf carbon frame - you pick the brand. Then, lets put both frames through one of those testing proceedures. The carbon frame will transfer more energy to the rear wheel than the steel frame. It will also survive the maximum-cycle test longer. It also won't rust.

In closing: carbon fiber = light, stiff, strong. Steel = light (for big bucks), flexible, weak.
galen_52657 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 09:04 AM   #11
brunning
Senior Member
 
brunning's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: New York City
Bikes: 1999 Serotta Csi Custom, ~1984 Pinarello track bike
Posts: 1,519
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
i believe zanotti cycles built a 16.5 lb complete bike made with reynolds S3 steel.
brunning is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 09:47 AM   #12
FatBomber
It's not easy being green
 
FatBomber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Chicago
Bikes: Cannondale Jekyll 700, Jamis Eclipse
Posts: 437
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by galen_52657
Works of art belong in a museum. I ride my bike and it gets all dirty and covered with road crud. Lets take one of your 'works of art' steel frames and an off-the-shelf carbon frame - you pick the brand. Then, lets put both frames through one of those testing proceedures. The carbon frame will transfer more energy to the rear wheel than the steel frame. It will also survive the maximum-cycle test longer. It also won't rust.

In closing: carbon fiber = light, stiff, strong. Steel = light (for big bucks), flexible, weak.
But you can repair a steel frame via welding or brazing. What can you do but cry yourself to sleep after you damage a CF frame?

If there is a way to repair a CF frame, I am ignorant to it and need to be educated.
FatBomber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 09:48 AM   #13
ImprezaDrvr
Back in the Sooner State
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Norman, OK
Bikes:
Posts: 2,572
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
galen, seriously, read more about steel before calling it weak. And you might be the only person on the planet incapable of keeping a steel frame from rusting, but that's not anyone's problem but your own.
ImprezaDrvr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 09:51 AM   #14
sydney
Senior Member
 
sydney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 9,428
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBomber

If there is a way to repair a CF frame, I am ignorant to it and need to be educated.
There is. Lugged and tubes construction is easier, but not necessarily cheap.
sydney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 10:06 AM   #15
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc
Posts: 4,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by ImprezaDrvr
galen, seriously, read more about steel before calling it weak. And you might be the only person on the planet incapable of keeping a steel frame from rusting, but that's not anyone's problem but your own.
Dude,

I was riding a (steel) bike while you were ****zing yellow.... Compared to CF steel is weak. And, unless you are going to keep your 'work of art' hermetically sealed, it will rust someplace.

I like steel bikes. I own 3. They ride very nicely. They are just not state-of-the-art for road racing frame material. And, if you are a large man who generates larger-than-average torque, steel frames just flex too much resulting in power loss.

Thats the way it is and no amount of reading will change the facts.
galen_52657 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 10:19 AM   #16
PaulBravey
Senior Member
 
PaulBravey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: San Rafael, CA
Bikes:
Posts: 532
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Woah, dejá vu!
PaulBravey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 10:26 AM   #17
53-11 alltheway
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 2,057
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by forum*rider
18.5lbs is like a lead weight to the serious weight weenies.

Lead weight?!?! Problem with rider, not bike!
53-11 alltheway is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 10:42 AM   #18
531Aussie
Aluminium Crusader :-)
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Bikes:
Posts: 9,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulBravey
Woah, dejá vu!
Or "deju view, all over again" as some say
531Aussie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 10:49 AM   #19
sydney
Senior Member
 
sydney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 9,428
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by galen_52657
Dude,

And, if you are a large man who generates larger-than-average torque, steel frames just flex too much resulting in power loss.

Thats the way it is and no amount of reading will change the facts.
Bet you never tried a real old school pro ride like a Merckx mxl??...Dude....And so what if steel is'nt so called 'state of the art'? what does that realy mean to the average rider, not that there are not plenty of newer,lighter and plenty stiff tubesets.
sydney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:01 AM   #20
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc
Posts: 4,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sydney
Bet you never tried a real old school pro ride like a Merckx mxl??...Dude....And so what if steel is'nt so called 'state of the art'? what does that realy mean to the average rider, not that there are not plenty of newer,lighter and plenty stiff tubesets.
I had a 1990 Bianchi Giro with SP tubing.....is that 'old school' enough? If I was 5'9" @ 170 lbs or so, rode a 56 cm frame and generate maybe 350 watts I would make do with an 'average' frame. But seeing as I am 6'4" @ 196 and generate over 500 watts, I need a way better than 'average' frame. Hence, the CF.
galen_52657 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:05 AM   #21
catatonic
Chairman of the Bored
 
catatonic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: St. Petersburg, FL
Bikes: 2004 Raleigh Talus, 2001 Motobecane Vent Noir (Custom build for heavy riders)
Posts: 5,825
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
roadbikes do not come close to the torque created on a mtb...yet you still sometimes see steel on good mtn bikes. Given aluminum has almost taken over mountain biking...but my point is, if you have torque transfer issues on a roadbike, then that bike was either:

a) designed to be light, in disregard to performance

b) poorly designed

c) meant for a significantly lighter rider (much like me being 220, riding on an ultralight made for a 140-150lb twiglet).

either way, it's a case of the wrong tool for the job.
catatonic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:06 AM   #22
alanbikehouston
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 5,250
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It seems as if whenever someone wants to discuss the merits of a bike, or its design, the subject of "racing" comes up. There might be about fifty guys in America who make a decent living "racing" bikes. Among those fifty guys or so guys, the ones who get a "free" carbon bike from their team ride carbon. Those who don't get a "free" carbon bike are riding the bike their team gave them.

But, for the 99.99% of people who ride bikes on a regular basis, and who do NOT race, the "this is the best frame for ME, because Lance rides it" thing seems kinda silly. It is like saying "I gotta have a Indy 500 car to drive to work, because that is the car that won the Indy 500".

And, discussions of "stiffness" and "power transfer" based on the choice of materials show a lack of understanding of how bikes are made. Some of the aluminum frame bikes made in the 1970's had small diameter tubes with thick walls. Some riders thought those frames felt as soft as noodles. Said aluminum was not stiff enough for "serious riders". Then, the trend with aluminum was to go to tubes of huge diameters and thin walls. Some riders began to say aluminum was "too stiff". In fact, it was tube diameter, not the aluminum, that added the "stiffness".

Rivendell designs bikes to match the needs of each rider. Amy's bike was made for a "Non-Marty Nothstein" weighing around 120 pounds. Her frame is suitable for many riders under 160 pounds. But, by chosing tubes of a larger diameter, or with thicker walls, Rivendell can also produce a bike suitable for a powerful rider who weighs 220 pounds.

Which bike makers do a similar "rider tuning" using aluminum or carbon tubes? Only in our dreams are most of us are as strong or as powerful as Lance Armstrong or Marty Nothstein. In real life, we need bikes that are designed for our weight, our power, our riding style. And steel has proven to be the best material for that sort of "custom fitting" to purpose and rider.
alanbikehouston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:10 AM   #23
sydney
Senior Member
 
sydney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 9,428
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by galen_52657
I had a 1990 Bianchi Giro with SP tubing.....is that 'old school' enough? If I was 5'9" @ 170 lbs or so, rode a 56 cm frame and generate maybe 350 watts I would make do with an 'average' frame. But seeing as I am 6'4" @ 196 and generate over 500 watts, I need a way better than 'average' frame. Hence, the CF.
SP was standadrd diameter and in no way compares to stuff like Max that the Merckx and a few others were built with.It was the choice of big heavy riders when the pros were still riding steel. I suspect you bad mouth steel without really having a clue, as the current post post suggest.
sydney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:16 AM   #24
Daily Commute
Ride the Road
 
Daily Commute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Bikes: Surly Cross-Check; hard tail MTB
Posts: 4,059
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Cost-effectiveness is the most important point about steel for those of us for whom a bike is transportion. I have no doubt that CF frames are better for racing, but once you get out of steel frames, you have to pay a lot more for marginal improvements in quality. One reason I love the Surly Cross-Check is that it provides an incredible bang for the buck.

Besides, most CF bikes are designed for recreation, not transportation. That's fine, if a recreational toy is what you want. A carbon road bike will help you efficiently ride a century, as long as:
You end where you start or you arrange to have someone pick you up at the end;
Weather conditions are good (forget it if there's snow or ice anywhere);
The road is well maintained;
You don't have to walk anywhere once you get where you're going;
You don't have to carry anything except gel packs, power bars, and water bottles; and
You have a team car following you along your route.
Daily Commute is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-04, 11:16 AM   #25
galen_52657
Banned.
 
galen_52657's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Towson, MD
Bikes: 2001 Look KG 241, 1989 Specialized Stump Jumper Comp, 1986 Gatane Performanc
Posts: 4,020
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
Which bike makers do a similar "rider tuning" using aluminum or carbon tubes? Only in our dreams are most of us are as strong or as powerful as Lance Armstrong or Marty Nothstein. In real life, we need bikes that are designed for our weight, our power, our riding style. And steel has proven to be the best material for that sort of "custom fitting" to purpose and rider.
With all do respect, you may wish to check out Calfee carbon fiber frames. They 'custom fit' the carbon tubes.

I do race, though not as often as in the 90's but I would say that many of my training rides are as hard or harder than a race. Everybody I ride with has a pro-quality bike.

In real life, I want to beat my buddy to the top of the hill and down the other side. For my size, CF does the trick. And, there are many, many riders who put out as much power a Lance. They just can't sustain it as long.

I am sure your gurl loves her frame! If she had gone CF it would have been lighter and stiffer.
galen_52657 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:57 PM.