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Old 01-04-19, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by shuru421 View Post
So the only real difference is that Columbus EL-OS has the same amount of stiffness of the MAX but throughout its entire frame as opposed to MAX which is specifically stiff in certain areas.

Question. Why is it a compromise for the stiffness to be increased by the same amount in all directions? Is stiffness a win/lose situation? I thought stiffness was a good attribute?

Stated for MAX : "..demands of extreme bads: sprints, time trials, climbing and strong centrifugal acceleration when descending"

Stated for EL-OS : "..set in the toughest professional competitions.."

So is EL-OS not good for climbing and strong centrifugal accelerations? Are those not "settings of the toughest professional competitions"?

While a stiffer frame is desirable in terms of efficient power transmission, it is not more desirable in terms of comfort, as it transmits more road shock and is more fatiguing Like all things in life, there is compromise between the two and the desired balance will vary depending on the individual, road conditions, terrain and length of rides. To cover the conceivable range, manufacturers offer a variety of tubesets.

EL-OS was intended as a general purpose road tubeset, similar to Columbus' venerable SL. Improvements in alloy (and road conditions) allowed for thinner and lighter tubes, resulting in EL. However, this resulted in loss of stiffness and EL was recommended only for very light riders, those with very smooth cadence or where light weight was the priority. EL-OS recovered the lost stiffness by increasing tubing diameter. This also resulted in some weight gain, though it was still significantly lighter than SL, while having comparable stiffness.

MAX on the other hand is a specific purpose tubeset and this is indicted in the brochure by "extreme loads" ( I think the typesetter mistook " loads" as "bads" by reading the 'l" plus "o" as a "b"). Comparatively, it is stiffer and better than EL-OS in these conditions, provided fatigue is not an issue and weight is not the main priority. It is better suited for rides of shorter duration and/or on smoother surfaces. Personally, I always thought that MAX made an excellent track frame and it's worth noting that MAX appeared at the same time that Columbus' dedicated track tubesets disappeared.

Of course, the above assumes that everything other than the tubeset are equal. Frame builders can notably alter the ride characteristics of a frame via various methods. .
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