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Is triple butted better than double butted?

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Is triple butted better than double butted?

Old 07-20-22, 03:32 PM
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Lbxpdx
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Is triple butted better than double butted?

I know that at times the lower modes receive an upgrade the following year as parts or materials change. I was looking at a 1988 SJ and a 1989 RH. I noticed the RH is triple butted while the SJ is double.

does triple butting make a frame with the same geometry as a double butted one innately better?
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Old 07-20-22, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Lbxpdx View Post
I know that at times the lower modes receive an upgrade the following year as parts or materials change. I was looking at a 1988 SJ and a 1989 RH. I noticed the RH is triple butted while the SJ is double.

does triple butting make a frame with the same geometry as a double butted one innately better?
SJ = Stumpjumper?
RH = Rockhopper?
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Old 07-20-22, 03:55 PM
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All else being equal, the bike made with triple- vs double-butted tubing will be lighter, and perhaps more compliant. Therein lies the rub though. All else is seldom equal. More importantly, could you tell the difference in a blind test? I very much doubt it. Next you'll be asking about Splined Triple-Butted Tubing.
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Old 07-20-22, 03:55 PM
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I doubt it. I'll defer to the people who actually, you know, build frames for the final word.

But speaking from the unique position of never having brazed two pieces of metal together in my life, I am convinced that, once you get past a certain level of quality of steel, the builder's skill and the thickness of the tubes are more important than the name on the sticker or the number of butts. I'm a big boy, and the best riding bike I have was made in the mid-1960s with Columbus SP (thicker walls). To someone who is my height but lighter than I am might think it feels lifeless. By the same token, a thinner-walled tubed frame that feels great to them might feel a bit flexy to me. And this is not even getting into the differences in tube diameters . . . .
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Old 07-20-22, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by tricky View Post
SJ = Stumpjumper?
RH = Rockhopper?
sorry. Yes.
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Old 07-20-22, 04:15 PM
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Is triple butted "better?" Are 12 cogs on your freewheel better than 11?
Maybe yes, but not significantly, IMO
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Old 07-20-22, 04:37 PM
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Is stepped butting better, or would it be better to have it conical?
Are internal splines (Miyata) better, or external fluting (Gilco)?
Do the tube ends need to be thicker (butted) for brazing into lugs and filet brazing only, or can tig-welded, air-hardened steels (631, 853) make butting less relevant?
Because tubing failure often begins at a stress riser, could honing and polishing the inside of the tubes reduce the required thickness?
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Old 07-20-22, 04:51 PM
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is triple butted better than double-butted?
Well, it's one more, isn't it?

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Old 07-20-22, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post


Is triple butted "better?" Are 12 cogs on your freewheel better than 11?
Maybe yes, but not significantly, IMO
do not ask is 12 better than 11 of Majek today after the broken chain on the climb in the Tour yesterday.
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Old 07-20-22, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bikingshearer View Post
I doubt it. I'll defer to the people who actually, you know, build frames for the final word.

But speaking from the unique position of never having brazed two pieces of metal together in my life, I am convinced that, once you get past a certain level of quality of steel, the builder's skill and the thickness of the tubes are more important than the name on the sticker or the number of butts. I'm a big boy, and the best riding bike I have was made in the mid-1960s with Columbus SP (thicker walls). To someone who is my height but lighter than I am might think it feels lifeless. By the same token, a thinner-walled tubed frame that feels great to them might feel a bit flexy to me. And this is not even getting into the differences in tube diameters . . . .
short transition steps vs an elongated drawn change in wall thickness. At the limits there will be stress concentrations with abrupt steps, May you never find those limits.
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Old 07-20-22, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
do not ask is 12 better than 11 of Majek today after the broken chain on the climb in the Tour yesterday.
I stopped at 8.
Chains are cheaper that way.
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Old 07-20-22, 06:00 PM
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I'm attempting to ride every variation of tubing diameter, thickness, buttness, brazing material, lug type, and color (I've heard orange is the fastest, but that's just talk talk talk.. with no documented conclusive data to back it up). I feel confident, after exhausting all variables in the equation, tabulating it, and crunching the data... I will still not have the answer. If you have doubled butts... that's the best, and tripling your butts, even better. I think mostly though, C&V is about riding, learning, drinking, and lying; and the greatest of these is lying (trust me).
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Old 07-20-22, 06:03 PM
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fwiw

I have a double butted 84 team miyata, best ride ever so far....with the right wheelset and tires mavic gel 330 and tubies

I also have an 85 team miyata with triple butted (but not splined triple butted) and with a similar wheelset (mavic reflex with vittoria corsa control tubies) and it rides almost as well, but not quite.

so just tubing is not going to make that big of a difference, once you are at at least middle level decent stuff
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Old 07-20-22, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by uncle uncle View Post
I'm attempting to ride every variation of tubing diameter, thickness, buttness, brazing material, lug type, and color (I've heard orange is the fastest, but that's just talk talk talk.. with no documented conclusive data to back it up). I feel confident, after exhausting all variables in the equation, tabulating it, and crunching the data... I will still not have the answer. If you have doubled butts... that's the best, and tripling your butts, even better. I think mostly though, C&V is about riding, learning, drinking, and lying; and the greatest of these is lying (trust me).
no one lies hear, but there are lots of entertaining stories, that might have some level of embellishment over time.
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Old 07-20-22, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
Maybe, like "clincher", the defintion of "triple butted" has changed with time. However, the above illustration does not represent the triple butted tubes employed by companies
such as Ishiwata, Fuji and Miyata, in the 1980s. Those triple butted tubes had only a single butt at each end, like a double butted tube, but unlike a double butted tube, the butts were a different thickness.

This was a slightly more sophisticated approach than double butting, allowing the designer more flexibility in achieving the desired frame characteristics. Traditonally, the thicker of the two ends was employed at the bottom bracket end of the down tube and seat tube, and the head tube end of the top tube. Depending on the actual gauges of the tubes selected, it could result in a stiffer frame and slightly heavier frame or a more compliant and slightly lighter frame. So, whether or not is better than double butted will depend on the gauges selected by the designer, your frame characteristics preference and how sensitive you are to the differences. Most cyclists can't feel the difference.

Attached is a page from an Ishiwata catalog showing their EX series of triple butted tubesets. Note how the construction is essentially a double butted tube but with each butt having a different thickness.
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Old 07-20-22, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
short transition steps vs an elongated drawn change in wall thickness. At the limits there will be stress concentrations with abrupt steps, May you never find those limits.
Amen. This applies as well to frames, components, tires, marriages . . . .
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Old 07-20-22, 07:21 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
Well, it's one more, isn't it?

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Old 07-21-22, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
Maybe, like "clincher", the defintion of "triple butted" has changed with time. However, the above illustration does not represent the triple butted tubes employed by companies
such as Ishiwata, Fuji and Miyata, in the 1980s. Those triple butted tubes had only a single butt at each end, like a double butted tube, but unlike a double butted tube, the butts were a different thickness.
Of course you're right, I didn't take the time to look at the picture I posted!

On the other hand...
From Kaisei:


Kaisei 019E CR-MO Quadruple Butted Tubing
Chromium Molybdenum (CRMO)
Top Tube: Outer Diam- 25.4mm / Length- 580mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.7mm
Down Tube: Outer Diam- 28.6mm / Length- 630mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.8mm
Seat Tube: Outer Diam- 28.6mm / Length- 610mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.7mm
Head Tube: Outer Diam- 31.8mm / Length- 180mm / Wall Thickness- 1.0mm-
Chain Stays: Outer Diam 1-22.2 mm / Outer Diam 2- 12mm / Length- 410mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm-
Seat Stays: Outer Diam 1- mm / Outer Diam 2- mm / Length- mm / Wall Thickness- mm-
Fork Blades: Outer Diam 1- 28/20mm / Outer Diam 2- 12mm / Length- 400mm / Wall Thickness- 0.95mm-
Fork Steerer: Outer Diam- 25.4mm / Length- 200mm / Wall Thickness- 2.2mm> 1.6mm

The three main tubes on this set are clearly stepped down more than once.
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Old 07-21-22, 09:38 AM
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I confess, I've probably bragged about triple butted, just because it was on the decal.
I'm pretty sure I also answered, when asked if it was better, something like "well, they say it is."

Also, there is a slight hesitation when someone brings "butted" into the conversation.
To remind myself to think right.
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Old 07-21-22, 09:58 AM
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There’s always something to learn here, I thought triple-butted dated back to the Triassic Period.
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Old 07-21-22, 10:04 AM
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Obviously my Fuji's quad-butted tubing is better.
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Old 07-21-22, 10:27 AM
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That's it, I'm on the search for undecuple-butted tubing...cause I wanna go to 11
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Old 07-21-22, 12:34 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
Of course you're right, I didn't take the time to look at the picture I posted!

On the other hand...
From Kaisei:


Kaisei 019E CR-MO Quadruple Butted Tubing
Chromium Molybdenum (CRMO)
Top Tube: Outer Diam- 25.4mm / Length- 580mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.7mm
Down Tube: Outer Diam- 28.6mm / Length- 630mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.8mm
Seat Tube: Outer Diam- 28.6mm / Length- 610mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm> 0.5mm> 0.4mm> 0.7mm
Head Tube: Outer Diam- 31.8mm / Length- 180mm / Wall Thickness- 1.0mm-
Chain Stays: Outer Diam 1-22.2 mm / Outer Diam 2- 12mm / Length- 410mm / Wall Thickness- 0.8mm-
Seat Stays: Outer Diam 1- mm / Outer Diam 2- mm / Length- mm / Wall Thickness- mm-
Fork Blades: Outer Diam 1- 28/20mm / Outer Diam 2- 12mm / Length- 400mm / Wall Thickness- 0.95mm-
Fork Steerer: Outer Diam- 25.4mm / Length- 200mm / Wall Thickness- 2.2mm> 1.6mm

The three main tubes on this set are clearly stepped down more than once.
Kaisei was the name of the company that rose out of the nankruptcy of Ishiwata. It was owned by a former Ishiwata director and operated out of the former Ishiwata factory, using the Ishiwata tooling. They also acquired all the tubeset names used by Ishiwata. Essentially, they are Ishiwata tubesets by another name.

However, the fourth butt is not a butt in the traditonal sense. Basically, it's a triple butted tube with a mid-section that has long gradual taper(s) to the thinnest section of the tube. So, in that sense there is no additional step down, it's more of a ramp. See attached illustration from a Kaisei catalog. Note that this is the same illustration previously used by Ishiwata. In these illustrations, T1 is the thickest section, followed by T4, then T2 and T3, in order of decreasing thickness.
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Old 07-21-22, 02:29 PM
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^^^ This is what I thought, probably because I've been reading Miyata catalogs. Single butt at each end but w/ different thicknesses. Is it better? I don't know.
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Old 07-21-22, 02:35 PM
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IIRC, "triple butting" only applied to the head tube end of the down tube, to put a little more "meat" on the tube where the shift lever bosses would be brazed.

Tange "Infinity" tubing used a long, gradual taper instead of the fairly abrupt tapers on traditional butted tubes.

And then there's this:

https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6qglec
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