Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: San Diego
Bikes: Paketa V2r, Co-motion Equator Co-pilot
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Originally Posted by twocicle
The couplers on the 2002 Team AL we had were Titanium with ceramic facings. There were a total of 8 couplers on that frame w/lateral due to the double bottom tube design that predated the move to a single bottom tube w/Z-couplers. Did Santana switch to using AL couplers on their AL frames?
I have seen the older coupled Alu frames with the double boom tube. Ours had the oval boom with z-couplers. I'm not 100% sure what the material was for the S&S joints. When my couplers' nuts started filling with silver powder I called S&S to ask about it. They were very quick to state that the Alu couplers were not
an S&S product. Rather, Santana sub-contracts S&S to machine the parts -- sending in the billet for fabrication. I am no metallurgist, but I have never heard of titanium taking on a crystalline state of high friability. At least not with some very extreme treatment. Aluminium, on the other hand, gets brittle if it has been over-hardened.
I don't miss that coupled frame. The joints were actually plug-ugly compared to the steel, Ti and CF frame couplers with their beautiful polished lugs. Fillet brazing is nice at the main joints. But at the couplers, it looked like Franken-bike.
BTW, I didn't mean to derail the thread. I actually have relevant input regarding the OP that I forgot to write. We shipped our bike via UPS to the tour organizer who had their mechanic assemble and have it ready when we arrived. The single case has detachable casters which I bone-headedly left on when I dropped it off at the shipper. When it arrived only one caster was still attached! It's not that easy prying those things off. But, someone along the way either really wanted them or preferred to push the case along on one wobbly wheel instead of four.
I think two cases might be more manageable to all parties involved. The single Santana case is quite heavy (~70# packed) and its shape suggests a single baggage handler can manage it (and thus likely drop it). At least with the Bike Pro case, there is a much higher probability that there will be two humans involved in loading and unloading it.