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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

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Old 11-29-04, 12:24 AM   #1
Carlyle
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Straight guage vs. Butted Titanium

Hi everyone -- I was in my LBS today and was checking out a 04' LeMond Arrivee titanium bike. I've got a couple of thousand dollars saved up for a new bike, and was checking out titanium for the first time(I currently ride a Bianchi Veloce steel). I'm trying to confirm it from LeMond, but I Believe the Arrivee is straight guage tubing while their older Victoire model is double butted titanium. Does anyone know what difference this is going to make with a ti bike? Pretty much all good steel bikes these days are double butted, and I'm just assuming that a ti bike should be the same? should I take a pass on the arrivee and try to save up a bit more for a nicer ti frame, or is this a good deal at $2050 with ultegra???

Thanks
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Old 11-29-04, 08:10 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlyle
Hi everyone -- I was in my LBS today and was checking out a 04' LeMond Arrivee titanium bike. I've got a couple of thousand dollars saved up for a new bike, and was checking out titanium for the first time(I currently ride a Bianchi Veloce steel). I'm trying to confirm it from LeMond, but I Believe the Arrivee is straight guage tubing while their older Victoire model is double butted titanium. Does anyone know what difference this is going to make with a ti bike? Pretty much all good steel bikes these days are double butted, and I'm just assuming that a ti bike should be the same? should I take a pass on the arrivee and try to save up a bit more for a nicer ti frame, or is this a good deal at $2050 with ultegra???

Thanks
Double butting saves weight.
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Old 11-29-04, 08:11 AM   #3
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from what i hear, titanium spokes are a waste. Double butted is nice stuff though, if you can get that go for it.
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Old 11-29-04, 09:16 AM   #4
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'from what i hear, titanium spokes are a waste. Double butted is nice stuff though, if you can get that go for it.'

ignore this fool, obviously doesn't know what he is talking about.

Straight guage ti is cheaper to produce a bike from. Look at the difference in price between the Litespeed Firenze and all other offerings from them.
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Old 11-29-04, 09:41 AM   #5
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Have you ridden it? Forget the techy hooraa. Does it fit, and does it suit the sort of riding you do?
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Old 11-29-04, 11:44 AM   #6
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It might be a stretch financially, and as Late points out, fit is everything, but here's a good deal. Retail $3700, on sale for $2499.
http://www.coloradocyclist.com/commo...273&TextMode=0
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Old 11-29-04, 12:13 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by roadbuzz
It might be a stretch financially, and as Late points out, fit is everything, but here's a good deal. Retail $3700, on sale for $2499.
http://www.coloradocyclist.com/commo...273&TextMode=0
I so should have asked them if they had that in a triple. Oh well steel is real right?
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Old 11-29-04, 01:39 PM   #8
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yeah, it rides really nice and I think it strikes a nice balance between being a decent climber, but also smooth for longer rides...
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Old 11-29-04, 02:12 PM   #9
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the litespeed is a pretty good deal, but that's a bit more of a stretch financially, but I will look into it. LeMond makes an older frame called the victoire classic which is double butted ti - I've seen one built up for about 2,500 but it's at a store about an hour away. might check it out anyway.
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Old 11-29-04, 03:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roadbuzz
It might be a stretch financially, and as Late points out, fit is everything, but here's a good deal. Retail $3700, on sale for $2499.
http://www.coloradocyclist.com/commo...273&TextMode=0
Don't you mean $2599?

Edit: 12/04/2004: It is now $2399 at CC this weekend.

Last edited by kgatwork; 12-04-04 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 11-29-04, 04:08 PM   #11
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Prices are going up.Sounds like a great deal if it fits. Buy it if you love it. Sounds like you do.
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Old 11-29-04, 04:31 PM   #12
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I think double butted Ti is a little lighter, not much probably, but that's the only difference from straight gauge Ti.

I'm planning on getting a Merlin Cyrene, which is straight gauge Ti, it's about a grand cheaper than the butted frames.
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Old 11-29-04, 06:32 PM   #13
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I ride a Merlin Oddesy which is straight gauge Ti and not butted. It's a fine bike. I suppose if I wanted to spend the price of a very expensive wheel set additional, I could have gotten the Xtra Light but my feeling is that the weight savings in better invested in rotational parts - such as wheels. I'm not a pure climber at 6'2" and 190 pounds. I would think that swagged and ovalized tubes would be something to go for if the pocketbook will accept it.
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Old 11-29-04, 06:56 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlyle
the litespeed is a pretty good deal, but that's a bit more of a stretch financially, but I will look into it. LeMond makes an older frame called the victoire classic which is double butted ti - I've seen one built up for about 2,500 but it's at a store about an hour away. might check it out anyway.
I test rode a Lemond Victoire for a weekend last year. A bike shop in Baltimore let me have it for a couple days. It was built up with Ultegra and was a very nice bike. They wanted around 3k for it because something about the Victoire was supposed to be built up with Dura-Ace and the other Lemond Ti frame at the time was supposed to be built up with Ultegra but somehow this one got built up with Ultegra. Or maybe this one had Dura-Ace. I don't know. I'd have never known if they had not told me this.

Anyways, the build quality of the Lemond was very good. I took it out on my usual quick 30 mile route and it was a sweet ride. It definitely had a more laid back feel than what was my then current bike as it had a longer top tube. I probably would have purchased the bike but at the time I had just started looking so I had nothing to base my decision on - I did not even know if 3k was a fair price for the Victoire. Looking back it was definitely a great riding and solidly built bike. Since then I have test rode other ti bikes, including a Merline Cyrene, which I liked better but was more expensive at > 4k. Ride it. If you like it, it's comfortable, and is a fair price, then buy it.
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Old 11-30-04, 11:23 AM   #15
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If you like the litespeeds, look at preownedbikes.com..they have new ones there too.
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Old 11-30-04, 01:55 PM   #16
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There is a difference other then weight. Titanium tubing is flexy. A little bit more then Steel in fact. Having a double butted tubing will increase stiffnes and reduce weight among other things. That is why I am not big fan of moots bikes. They use straight gage tubing from sanvic (sp?). (I believe lemond gets there tubing from them also but don't quote me on that because I am not sure.) I think moots feel "wippy." Not a good ride compared to other butted ti bikes. Have not ridden a lemond ti bike though so I can not compare. From my expierence with ti (3 ti bikes) I would go with the double butted. I can deffinatly tell the difference when I ride butted compared to non butted.
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Old 11-30-04, 02:00 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Trevorsg
There is a difference other then weight. Titanium tubing is flexy. A little bit more then Steel in fact. Having a double butted tubing will increase stiffnes and reduce weight among other things. That is why I am not big fan of moots bikes. They use straight gage tubing from sanvic (sp?). (I believe lemond gets there tubing from them also but don't quote me on that because I am not sure.) I think moots feel "wippy." Not a good ride compared to other butted ti bikes. Have not ridden a lemond ti bike though so I can not compare. From my expierence with ti (3 ti bikes) I would go with the double butted. I can deffinatly tell the difference when I ride butted compared to non butted.
Everything else being equal, a thinner butted tube is NOT stiffer than a straight gage tube. Diameter is what matters most.FWIW, moots now offers butted 6/4 seamless tubing.
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Old 11-30-04, 02:57 PM   #18
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Just bought the Lemond Arrivee w/ full Ultegrea/ Bontrager race lite wheel set, rides smooth and looking forward to many great rides. The LBS allowed me to trade in a 2 month Lemond Etape for full credit, plus $1800 and did the deal. Had some great help from Jerry. Thanks Jerry!!
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Old 11-30-04, 02:59 PM   #19
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Reynolds makes that 6/4 butted tubeset. Anyone who makes ti frames can build you one using it. Nothing magic there.
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Old 11-30-04, 03:36 PM   #20
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Reynolds makes that 6/4 butted tubeset. Anyone who makes ti frames can build you one using it. Nothing magic there.
There is plenty of butted 3/2.5 around for alot less money.
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Old 11-30-04, 04:52 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by phantomcow2
from what i hear, titanium spokes are a waste. Double butted is nice stuff though, if you can get that go for it.

Um, he's talking about tubes, not spokes.
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Old 12-01-04, 08:25 AM   #22
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Double or tripple butting a bicycle tube is done to strengthen the area of the tube that is to fastened to another tube. It is the area of most stress. It isn't done to save weight as it neccessarily adds weight. That being said, tubes that benefit from butting are those that have been made as thin and light as is prudent for the application, then the areas near the tube ends are butted to add additional strength. So, in general an inexpensive iron pipe bicycle frame doesn't require butting, but a super thin walled Oxy-Platinum or Reynolds 853 does.
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Old 12-01-04, 08:51 AM   #23
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Double or tripple butting a bicycle tube is done to strengthen the area of the tube that is to fastened to another tube. It is the area of most stress. It isn't done to save weight as it neccessarily adds weight. That being said, tubes that benefit from butting are those that have been made as thin and light as is prudent for the application, then the areas near the tube ends are butted to add additional strength. So, in general an inexpensive iron pipe bicycle frame doesn't require butting, but a super thin walled Oxy-Platinum or Reynolds 853 does.
Well, You have it all wrong and backwards. The end of the tube needs to be thicker where it is welded or brazed.The tube is made thick at the end to add strength and material where it is needed and then thinned in the mid section where less material is needed...... It is about weight saving as leaving the tube full thickness over it's entire length adds weight that isn't needed......Just one example, is old school Isawata #026 was available in straight gage with a thicknss of 1mm. Same cromo alloy, and diameter available as #024 was butted 1.0 and 0.7. Obviously,both have the required amount on the ends for strength,but the 024 saves weight by being thinner in the middle.Concept and application is the same for all butted tubing.

Last edited by sydney; 12-01-04 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 12-01-04, 09:04 AM   #24
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sydney is of course correct.

however there are less saving in double butting Ti and AL frames because the tube sets are alreadt much light than Steel and they can;t be thinned down to much so relatively you'er adding expense without much weight loss.

Better weight savings can be achieved though clever design.
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Old 12-01-04, 09:11 AM   #25
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sydney is of course correct.

however there are less saving in double butting Ti and AL frames because the tube sets are alreadt much light than Steel and they can;t be thinned down to much so relatively you'er adding expense without much weight loss.

Better weight savings can be achieved though clever design.
Well, with both Ti and aluminum you need larger diameter to get stiffness, and you can't get around that with design, although special shaping and ovalizing at critical points can help. Strainght gage, large diameter aluminum is pretty heavy. Some of the low end stuff rivals generic butted cromo, so butted aluminum has been aound a long time, and weight saving is worthwhile and the added cost isn't that great. Ti being stiffer than aluminum doesn't bnefit so much, and the grams saved/ $$ spent isn't as favorable.
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