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Thread: CF vs. Ti

  1. #1
    Bowman
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    CF vs. Ti

    OK, here I go. Looking for a very stiff bike. Already have aluminum track. Looking at Calfee (Carbon fiber) and Merlin (Ti). Want the custom measurement which both offer. What builder of these two, in your opinion, will produce the better track bike?

    BTW - I weigh approx. 250. Talk about crossing over several forums.

    Thanks all.

  2. #2
    Senior Member melville's Avatar
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    I knew of a rider about your size who, towards the end of his career, was picked up by a team that had Merlins for their road squad. They insisted on providing him with a Ti frame. By the time they had gotten him one he felt he could ride and feel secure on, the frame weighed POUNDS more than his previous steel frame.

    You may find your thing in CF, but probably not in Ti. Ti bumps into the same tube diameter/wall thickness limits as steel when trying to make it light and rigid.

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    If you really want the best custom track bike, talk to Tom Kellogg. If it can be done correctly in Ti, he will know how.

  4. #4
    not actually Nickatina andre nickatina's Avatar
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    Carbon can build into a more aero frame...

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    Quote Originally Posted by andre nickatina View Post
    Carbon can build into a more aero frame...
    Custom CF track bikes typically use round tubes just like Ti or steel.
    The aero stuff is mass produced.

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    how tall are you? just wondering why you want custom. In Carbon there are some great stock bikes available that will be stiff enough for your weight.

    BT stealth does come with a 59cm top tube.

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    Utilitarian Boy Gyeswho's Avatar
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    Tom Kellogg designed this and it's an absolute stiff monster, but very comfy on the road as well. I've not ridden a carbon so I can't say how it relates. It's not a superlight weight, but it so stiff and agile that it moves like a lighter frame. I'm 190lb and 5'11"
    This is my street setup
    Last edited by Gyeswho; 03-26-09 at 02:11 PM.

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    Freakin' awesome. I'm insanely jealous.

  9. #9
    Bowman
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    Beautiful bike!! Thanks for all the good input.

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    Utilitarian Boy Gyeswho's Avatar
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    Thanks

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    CF. Why if Ti tends to be flexy on a road bike would you expect it to be stiff on a track bike? Furthermore most, if not all, world class (read extremely POWERerful) cyclists use CF frames. Makes it kind of obvious which one is superior for a stiff track frame...

    Quote Originally Posted by Bowman View Post
    OK, here I go. Looking for a very stiff bike. Already have aluminum track. Looking at Calfee (Carbon fiber) and Merlin (Ti). Want the custom measurement which both offer. What builder of these two, in your opinion, will produce the better track bike?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meek View Post
    CF. Why if Ti tends to be flexy on a road bike would you expect it to be stiff on a track bike?
    Ti that's not built too light isn't flexy on a road bike.

    Quote Originally Posted by Meek View Post
    Furthermore most, if not all, world class (read extremely POWERerful) cyclists use CF frames. Makes it kind of obvious which one is superior for a stiff track frame...
    World class cyclists are sponsored. They ride whatever the sponsor is trying to sell to *YOU*. Sponsors aren't interested in selling you a Ti bike. Ti lasts too long and they want you to consider bikes a disposable commodity rather than a long term purchase.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bitingduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by andr0id View Post
    World class cyclists are sponsored. They ride whatever the sponsor is trying to sell to *YOU*. Sponsors aren't interested in selling you a Ti bike. Ti lasts too long and they want you to consider bikes a disposable commodity rather than a long term purchase.
    At least in the US, world class track riders are for the most part responsible for finding their own equipment- there's not a lot of full sponsorship floating around in the track world. They may get help in getting sponsorship, but it's not unusual to see people at world cups riding a frame that's not made by their road sponsor, and that they probably got before they got to the world cup level. They probably got some kind of sponsorship deal on it, but they may have paid some, too.

    And as a racer, anything I'm on in a race is a disposable commodity. I've seen too much equipment destroyed to think otherwise.
    Track - the other off-road
    http://www.lavelodrome.org

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    Quote Originally Posted by bitingduck View Post
    And as a racer, anything I'm on in a race is a disposable commodity. I've seen too much equipment destroyed to think otherwise.
    I went to a world cup event at ADT a while back and was utterly shocked at how poorly the bikes held up in crashes. The last time I was at a world class track event everyone was still riding lugged steel and serious bike damage was extremely rare. But at the world cup event it seems like every time there was a fall you'd see broken forks bouncing down the track, handlebars headed in the other direction, fragments of carbon rims flying around... I was flabbergasted.

    All of which is a long way of suggestion that the average track racer either buy a steel frame and standard wheels, or take out a line of credit.

  15. #15
    Senior Member bitingduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six jours View Post
    I went to a world cup event at ADT a while back and was utterly shocked at how poorly the bikes held up in crashes. The last time I was at a world class track event everyone was still riding lugged steel and serious bike damage was extremely rare. But at the world cup event it seems like every time there was a fall you'd see broken forks bouncing down the track, handlebars headed in the other direction, fragments of carbon rims flying around... I was flabbergasted.

    All of which is a long way of suggestion that the average track racer either buy a steel frame and standard wheels, or take out a line of credit.
    I've seen steel frames break, too, and it's getting harder and harder to find someone who can fix them economically. Aluminum seems like a better budget choice-- you can replace it for about what it takes to replace a tube and repaint a steel frame.

    My super-heavy steel Pinarello has survived some pretty hard crashes, but they also laughed at me at weigh-in... Some of the CF bikes hold up quite well in crashes-- I've seen some Looks and BTs go down very hard and come up fine-- they're also not lightweight. The Mavic wheels seem pretty fragile, though.
    Track - the other off-road
    http://www.lavelodrome.org

  16. #16
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    Ummm.. World Class Track cycling is meausred in 0.001 sec and is worth personally many $$$ or Euros etc to riders that don't have large contracts. You ride either what you are sponsored by or "REBADGE" your own CF or Ti bike and have your sponsors name on it. If personal $$ and world records are on the line you ride the fastest bike...period!

    Quote Originally Posted by andr0id View Post
    World class cyclists are sponsored. They ride whatever the sponsor is trying to sell to *YOU*. Sponsors aren't interested in selling you a Ti bike. Ti lasts too long and they want you to consider bikes a disposable commodity rather than a long term purchase.

  17. #17
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    There are a few high-end "white label" bike manufacturers out there. I own a Shaklee Team bike that has "Marin" stickers all over it. Marin doesn't make track bikes and they didn't even make this one special for the team. They just outsourced it to Billato in Italy.



    On a related note, I played on the JR tennis circuit in HS around the same time that Andre Aggasi became popular. He played with Prince racquet all his career until he got sponsored by Head (I think). The thing is, Head didn't make a racquet that Aggasi liked. So, until the Head engineers made him a racquet that he liked he played with a Prince with Head logos.

    Most manufacturers see the racer's bike as ad space more so than showing off their wares. I'm sure that most spectators didn't know that the bike above wasn't made by Marin.

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