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


Go Back   > >

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 07-20-07, 04:40 PM   #1
kipibenkipod
Got an old Peugeot
Thread Starter
 
kipibenkipod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: I'm from Israel
Bikes: I had a Trek 1200
Posts: 642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Titanium touring frames

Hi,
Please help me understand why using steel is preferred then titanium for touring frames.
Thanks
kipibenkipod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 04:44 PM   #2
barba
Senior Member
 
barba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 4,083
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Steel is cheaper and can be more easily repaired.
barba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 04:49 PM   #3
kipibenkipod
Got an old Peugeot
Thread Starter
 
kipibenkipod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: I'm from Israel
Bikes: I had a Trek 1200
Posts: 642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by barba View Post
Steel is cheaper and can be more easily repaired.
But if I'm willing to drop the repair issue and pay for custom frame, wouldn't it be better to go for titanium for its long life?
kipibenkipod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 04:50 PM   #4
barba
Senior Member
 
barba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 4,083
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Steel lasts almost indefinitely if you treat it well. By all means, buy a Ti frame if you want to, though.
barba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 05:15 PM   #5
valygrl
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Boulder, CO
Bikes:
Posts: 8,327
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 42 Post(s)
Less theft risk/fear, maybe?
valygrl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 05:31 PM   #6
2manybikes
Dog is my co-pilot
 
2manybikes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Bikes: 2 many
Posts: 15,628
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 81 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kipibenkipod View Post
But if I'm willing to drop the repair issue and pay for custom frame, wouldn't it be better to go for titanium for its long life?
You want to leave a titanium frame bike locked up and walk away from it? Not me. I chose painted steel just for this reason alone. I don't leave my Ti bikes where I can't see them. It's up to you if you want to do that. You don't need to go custom to get a Ti touring bike frame. Litespeed makes a nice one.

You could get painted ti. But it is very hard to repair on the road, and steel bike frames last.
2manybikes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 07:29 PM   #7
DSchlichting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 342
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
They'll all last forever if you take care of them. I have a Spectrum ti touring bike which replaced a 1978 Proteus straight gauge 531 touring bike which I still use as well, BTW.
If you feel the lighter bike is worth it, go for Ti.
What you should be worrying about at this point is selecting a frame builder who can not only fit you correctly, but also can spec the tubing properly to assure this frame has the proper dynamics, not too stiff, not too whippy. I would suggest many fitters may be perfectly competent to spec a bike for racing/club ride use, bit to do it for loaded touring is a whole other matter. I took no chances, hence, the Spectrum
DSchlichting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 09:38 PM   #8
acantor
Macro Geek
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Bikes: True North tourer (www.truenorthcycles.com), 2004; Miyata 1000, 1985
Posts: 1,248
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
A custom bike is expensive whether it is made of steel or Titanium. I opted for steel when I bought my custom touring bike, but I could have ordered Titanium for an additional $1100 or so. But that would have pushed the price into the upper reaches of my financial stratosphere. It was too much for my pocketbook to handle!

If money were no object, I probably would have gone for Titanium. The idea of a strong, lightweight and rustproof frame is very tempting. But money is an issue, and there is nothing shoddy about my steel bike. The frame is strong, lightweight (compared to a Long Haul Trucker, but not to a carbon racer!) and, until the paint gets damaged, it is rustproof.

There is no guarantee that a Titanium frame will last longer than steel. Bikes do get stolen and banged up in accidents. A frame made of an exotic metal does not immunize the bicycle against thieves and potholes. All bikes need care. Any decent bicycle that is well maintained should last 20 or more years, and perhaps that's long enough. NOTHING is forever, not even the universe itself!
acantor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-07, 11:11 PM   #9
NoReg
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 5,117
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have one guy here with a titanium Bruce Gordon, you might search on that. I think the advantage of Ti would be very minimal compared to some things that might better be paid for in a touring bike. If you want to spend say 3-10 K on a touring bike you could easily do it, without Ti ever rising high enough on the list to be part of the package.

One problem with Ti is that it is pretty much in the doldrums right now there isn't the sizzle (tecnical reason for doing it), so it tends to get overlooked where availability of parts (tubes etc...) is concerned. Probably not an issue if your desires are very traditional since there are several makers like Gordon, and suppliers like Paragon that would get you there.
NoReg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-23-07, 08:31 PM   #10
DSchlichting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 342
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If we're talking Ti for a touring bike, we also have to consider that we talk out of 2 side of out mouths: get the lights frame, then pack it with panniers, packs, lights, etc. What exactly did we save by building in Ti?
As to Ti being in the doldrums, this is nonsense. Despite the CF growing all over the place, there is plenty of demand for Ti. The right builder will get the proper tubing for a touring bike application, and the wrong builder will build you a whippy peice of crap from what they have in stock. Hence my original comments: the OP needs to put on hold his/her issues of Ti vs Steel, and worry about getting the right builder to do this job.
DSchlichting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 06:10 AM   #11
brianmcg123
Senior Member
 
brianmcg123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: TN
Bikes:
Posts: 591
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 25 Post(s)
There really is no reason to make a touring bike out of ti. In order to make the tubes stout enough for touring you have lost the "lighteness" you may have gained. Then you get to spend an extra $1000 on it. Then as others have said you load it up with 50lbs of stuff and what do you have. A really expensive touring bike that has absolutlely no advantage over a steel counterpart.
brianmcg123 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 07:15 AM   #12
kipibenkipod
Got an old Peugeot
Thread Starter
 
kipibenkipod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: I'm from Israel
Bikes: I had a Trek 1200
Posts: 642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianmcg123 View Post
There really is no reason to make a touring bike out of ti. In order to make the tubes stout enough for touring you have lost the "lighteness" you may have gained. Then you get to spend an extra $1000 on it. Then as others have said you load it up with 50lbs of stuff and what do you have. A really expensive touring bike that has absolutlely no advantage over a steel counterpart.
There is advantage rust free, but for me it is not wort +1000$.
kipibenkipod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 07:29 AM   #13
tarwheel 
Senior Member
 
tarwheel's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Raleigh, NC
Bikes: Waterford RST-22, Bob Jackson World Tour, Ritchey Breakaway Cross, Soma Saga, De Bernardi SL, Specialized Sequoia
Posts: 8,512
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 65 Post(s)
To play the devil's advocate, I can see some real advantages with a ti touring frame. I have both steel and ti frames (both Eddy Merckx), so I am familiar with both. The ti frame would be marginally lighter, perhaps 1-2 pounds at most. However, an unpainted ti frame is remarkably maintenance free. You never have to worry about scratching or chipping the paint, or rust, or applying frame saver. An unpainted ti frame would be a perfect travel bike that has to be periodically packed in a case and shipped.

On the other hand, I doubt that any weight savings for a ti frame would amount to a hill of beans. By the time you load up a frame with racks, packs, cargo, water, etc., any additional weight of a steel frame would be negligible.

If you're looking for a ti touring frame, the Litespeed Blue Ridge seems like a good value. It has actual touring geometry, eyelets for racks and fenders, long chain stays, etc. Not sure if Litespeed is still selling the Blue Ridge or not, but I think they can be custom ordered if nothing else.
tarwheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 11:24 AM   #14
arctos
40 yrs bike touring
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Santa Barbara,CA.
Bikes: Bruce Gordon Ti Rock N Road [1989], Fat Chance Mountain Tandem [1988]
Posts: 997
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
I am the guy with the Ti Bruce Gordon RNR.

When built in 1989 all of my needs were taken into account-type of use;weight of rider;weight of gear load;riding style;rack type and placement. The end result was/is a bike that astonishes me on every tour on and off road with its abilities. Only the rider's abilities limit what the bike can do and where it can go. My sanity was questioned for using this rigid bike on the Divide Ride. It made a difficult ride very enjoyable day after day.
An ovalized and oversized down tube was used to stiffen the frame to handle my weight and touring load. When ridden without loaded panniers the bike feels almost too active/springy yet with a full touring load the bike's springiness is moderated and all pedaling effort is translated into forward motion without losing its comfortable compliance for the rider. The bike feels actually faster loaded. I guess that this end result is what a custom bike can do for you. I got what I asked for and more!

Maintenance free Ti still looks new after 18 years and the amortized cost goes down each year as well. I could not say the same for my Swiss Mondia Special steel Touring bike after ten years of touring. [And I am careful with equipment to make it last.]

Pick the best custom bike that you can afford and then take care of it. You will be pleased no matter the material. Good luck on your search.
arctos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 11:30 AM   #15
Speedo
Senior Member
 
Speedo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Boston Area
Bikes: Univega Gran Turismo, Guerciotti, Bridgestone MB2, Bike Friday New World Tourist, Serotta Ti
Posts: 1,998
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kipibenkipod View Post
There is advantage rust free, but for me it is not wort +1000$.
I have a steel bike I'm still using that is 24 years old. It has some rust spots, but nothing more than cosmetic blemishes. Is there anyone out there who has had to abandon a steel bike, that they had taken reasonable care of, because of rust?

I agree with those who've commented that Ti is all about the weight. If you are going to pile on 50 lbs of stuff, why pay the premium for shaving a pound or two off the frame?

Speedo
Speedo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 12:29 PM   #16
MrPolak
Just ride it.
 
MrPolak's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 335
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by brianmcg123 View Post
There really is no reason to make a touring bike out of ti. In order to make the tubes stout enough for touring you have lost the "lighteness" you may have gained. Then you get to spend an extra $1000 on it. Then as others have said you load it up with 50lbs of stuff and what do you have. A really expensive touring bike that has absolutlely no advantage over a steel counterpart.
The advantage is that TI is stronger than steel for a given weight, it doesn't corrode like steel and it doesn't fatigue as easily. Think strong bike, lighter weight, sweet ride. Most importantly when you're done touring you can take off all those panniers and hang with the roadies on the weekend. :-) One bike - many purposes.

Oh, and you'll look very good doing it!
MrPolak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-07, 12:34 PM   #17
tarwheel 
Senior Member
 
tarwheel's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Raleigh, NC
Bikes: Waterford RST-22, Bob Jackson World Tour, Ritchey Breakaway Cross, Soma Saga, De Bernardi SL, Specialized Sequoia
Posts: 8,512
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 65 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedo View Post
I have a steel bike I'm still using that is 24 years old. It has some rust spots, but nothing more than cosmetic blemishes. Is there anyone out there who has had to abandon a steel bike, that they had taken reasonable care of, because of rust?

I agree with those who've commented that Ti is all about the weight. If you are going to pile on 50 lbs of stuff, why pay the premium for shaving a pound or two off the frame?

Speedo
I agree that a properly maintained steel bike should not have problems with rust. However, not everyone properly maintains their bikes. I once had a beautiful steel lugged Bianchi that was my first good road bike. I quit riding for a while, and when I started up again (about 5 years later) it had a fair amount of rust under the top tube. I was able to salvage the frame by carefully sanding off the flaking paint and rust, and then repainting it, but it could have been ruined without that effort. I suspect the rust was caused by not washing the sweat off my old bike from time to time.

I had another steel bike (Nishiki) that I sold to my brother. He sweats a LOT, and his sweat apparently is very corrosive. That frame completed rusted in half, and he had to throw it away.

Nevertheless, I still own two steel road bikes and have no concerns about rust anymore. I wash bikes periodically and wipe them down often. I dry them right away if I get caught in the rain. Both frames are also treated with framesaver.
tarwheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-07, 04:21 AM   #18
Alex L
Senior Member
 
Alex L's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Moscow, Russia
Bikes:
Posts: 79
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
An example of a custom ti bike:
http://www.titan-bikes.ru/products_p...DSCN1481-3.jpg
IMO that looks very nice.

A titanium MTB frame $670 (certificate http://www.rapid-titan.ru/product/frames/mcm/EFBe.jpg ) for disc brakes, which is compatible with a rear rack:
http://www.rapid-titan.ru/frame_mtb.htm (look at MCM-B)

A titanium fork like the one on my MTB $210:
http://www.rapid-titan.ru/fork.htm (look at MTB)

Titanium rear racks $130:
http://www.rapid-titan.ru/rack.htm

An example of the seat tubes on a custom bike to choose from:
http://photofile.ru/photo/mashinki/39680/2399118.jpg

So, the custom Ti bikes arenít too expensive at least where I live. It is possible to add additional eyelets for racks and fenders, and just everything what you want.

I have not decided yet, but probably ti bike will be my next one, when my 11 years old son gets my alloy MTB, which I ride now.

I agree with the answer on the original question that the steel tubes are cheaper. However, the Thorn bikes are made of steel and they are extremely expensive.

P.S. If you want to read Russian texts on the linked pages, use online translator.
Alex L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-07, 05:33 AM   #19
kipibenkipod
Got an old Peugeot
Thread Starter
 
kipibenkipod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: I'm from Israel
Bikes: I had a Trek 1200
Posts: 642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hi,
thanks for showing us the numbers. The bike is very nice.
This thread is very long and has a lot of question regard Ti. The most important thing is that you need to find a builder that understands how Ti touring bike should be built. What do you think about this builder?
Do you think this bike have the ability to preform under load?
I saw the spec of the frame but I really don't understand how to read frame measurements. Can someone shad some insight about it?
kipibenkipod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-07, 09:27 AM   #20
greenstork
Senior Member
 
greenstork's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Seattle, WA
Bikes:
Posts: 584
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Davidson Bicycles here in Seattle builds up their fair share of custom Ti touring bikes, I'd check them out. I agree with the previous poster that you need a builder who understands the extra demands a Ti touring bike needs to handle over a Ti road race bike. Geometries and tube thickness will be completely different on these two bikes.
greenstork is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-09, 08:43 AM   #21
Choccy
Commuter
 
Choccy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Hoddesdon, UK
Bikes: Handsome Dog Titanium (Work) Santa Cruz Superlight (Play) Kona Stinky (Real Play)
Posts: 256
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have a 10 year old titanium frame and it still looks as good as new. The advantages are not just rust free but the strength of the frame too.

I know there are a lot of people here who swear by steel which is fine but you cannot get over the pure facts that titanium is lighter and stronger than steel and also better against corrosion.

As for the theft worries I've left mine locked up at work every day for the last 5 years and have known at least 8 other bikes to be stolen, all the other bikes were valued at about £300 each.

Choccy...
Choccy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-09, 08:55 AM   #22
Bekologist
totally louche
 
Bekologist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: A land that time forgot
Bikes: the ever shifting stable loaded with comfortable road bikes and city and winter bikes
Posts: 18,025
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ti's got SPROING in it.

a poorly specc'ed touring frame made of ti will ride like a wet noodle.
Bekologist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-09, 09:26 AM   #23
kayakdiver
ah.... sure.
 
kayakdiver's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Whidbey Island WA
Bikes: Specialized.... schwinn..... enough to fill my needs..
Posts: 4,107
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I say if you can afford it............... why not? I would if I could. Nothing wrong with owning nice stuff if it fits in YOUR budget. Does not fit in mine I'm sorry to say.
kayakdiver is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-09, 10:00 AM   #24
Bacciagalupe
Professional Fuss-Budget
 
Bacciagalupe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 6,438
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
As with most others, I think it comes down to expense and lack of necessity. The $1000 premium goes a long way when you're on tour. I also happen to hold the "don't buy a bike you can't afford to replace" philosophy, and spending an extra $1000 makes the potential replacement cost a tad more painful.

The main use I'd imagine for a Ti frame would be more for a sport touring setup. If you want your bike to be a little lighter when it isn't loaded, a Ti frame might save a pound or so. However, I think even that is mostly psychological; I don't think a lot of riders would even notice a 1 or 2 pound difference in bike frame weight. It's certainly not critical unless you're racing or in a really fast group.

Plus, there are likely more economical ways to shave the same weight off, e.g. have one set of beefy wheels & tires for touring, and a lighter set for other uses; and/or use a heavy Brooks saddle for touring, and a lighter racing saddle for other uses....
Bacciagalupe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-11-09, 10:09 AM   #25
kayakdiver
ah.... sure.
 
kayakdiver's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Whidbey Island WA
Bikes: Specialized.... schwinn..... enough to fill my needs..
Posts: 4,107
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
As with most others, I think it comes down to expense and lack of necessity. The $1000 premium goes a long way when you're on tour. I also happen to hold the "don't buy a bike you can't afford to replace" philosophy, and spending an extra $1000 makes the potential replacement cost a tad more painful.

The main use I'd imagine for a Ti frame would be more for a sport touring setup. If you want your bike to be a little lighter when it isn't loaded, a Ti frame might save a pound or so. However, I think even that is mostly psychological; I don't think a lot of riders would even notice a 1 or 2 pound difference in bike frame weight. It's certainly not critical unless you're racing or in a really fast group.

Plus, there are likely more economical ways to shave the same weight off, e.g. have one set of beefy wheels & tires for touring, and a lighter set for other uses; and/or use a heavy Brooks saddle for touring, and a lighter racing saddle for other uses....
I realized after posting that this is a 2 year old thread....

All the above is valid if............. I don't have this kind of disposable income. Some do. It really isn't any different than buying a Prince or King carbon wonderbike. If you can afford it and can afford to replace it it's really no different than owning a less expensive touring bike.

If I could afford to ride and replace a ti bike without blinking(a little pain)..... I would ride one. I can't and don't.

Nothing wrong with owning nice stuff if you can afford it. I ride a 5 year old carbon bike for group rides. Does not mean that I wouldn't like the latest TCR from Giant. Would love one.

Different strokes......... I hope people buy them so maybe down the road I can pick up a nice used Ti bike for cheap
kayakdiver 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 11:44 PM.