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Calling Titanium Framed Bike Owners

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Calling Titanium Framed Bike Owners

Old 03-26-03, 11:24 AM
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ZackJones
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Calling Titanium Framed Bike Owners

Greetings,

I don't know why but I've been checking out titanium bikes lately. (It's not like I'll be able to buy one anytime soon) In the past I've ridden steel frames and now I'm riding an AL framed K2.

For those of you who have ridden different frames are the titanium frames that much better? The least expensive titanium bike I've found is the Habanero bikes - anyone own or ridden one of those?

Zack
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Old 03-26-03, 11:26 AM
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I know sheldon brown sells Habanero bikes, you might want to send him a message. Just the fact he sells them says alot to me
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Old 03-26-03, 11:43 AM
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Hi,
I own an Airborne Carpe Diem, and have ridden the Habanero road model. The Habanero is what all titanium bikes used to be like. The straight pipes give a great ride; but you lose a little stiffness pedalling. I think it's a great bike, and seriously considered buying it. Sheldon isn't kidding when he calls it the Century Special; I had to pull myself off the bike. I think Ti bikes are great; they provide good mechanical efficiency with a very pleasant ride. 'Once you go grey, you never stray'
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Old 03-26-03, 12:34 PM
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i'm in the same boat as you zack, but i look anyway. i am partial to the Dean line of bikes. they have close outs and specials on their website. Ti frame with carbon stays are nice.
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Old 03-26-03, 01:39 PM
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For inexpensive titanium check this site out:

www.aerolite.ca
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Old 03-26-03, 02:46 PM
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If you look in Excel Sports they have a line of Ti bikes called Macalu. There are both MTB and road models. Then you have the Zion line of bikes put out by Jenson. Both of these lines I believe are made in Chattanooga by Litespeed.
I have an Indendant Fabrication Ti MTB. The differance between aluminum and Ti is amazing. They really soak up a lot of the vibrations which is transmitted through an aluminum frame.
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Old 03-26-03, 02:58 PM
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GO find TST (true sports technologies, and Ti tubing supplier to the golf and bike industries) online for Ti bike deals, new frames @ ~650 Bucks direct. I have one, the mongoose design and it handles great. The welds are as nice as Merlin and Litespeed. Any Q's email me.
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Old 03-26-03, 03:38 PM
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Hi Zack.

I have an aluminum frame Raleigh and a Ti frame Litespeed.
The difference in the ride of the Litespeed (built right down the road in Chattanooga :thumbup: ) is amazing! With the Al frame I feel every rough spot in the road. Riding my Litespeed is a lot more enjoyable. The roads seem smoother and the bike is more responsive.

When I'm on the Raleigh many cyclists act kind of snobbish. When I'm riding the Litespeed everyone waves or says hello. Hmmmmm.


I didn't buy my Litespeed. It was a gift from my wife. She knew I wanted one and took me to the bike shop and told me to pick the one I wanted. I wanted the Vortex but decided that was a little pricey so I settled for the Tuscany.

If you're married just drop a few hints and see what happens.
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Old 03-26-03, 05:33 PM
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I own an Airborne Carpe Diem also. Not having ridden a steel or aluminum bike set up exactly the same way, I can't really compare it to anything else.

The reason I bought it was largely because its ride seemed comparable to the steel bikes I generally prefer, and at the time (two years ago) it was not much more expensive than other good steel 'cross frames on the market. I was entused by the idea of a "lifetime" frame for that kind of money (and I loved being able to configure the bike precisely to my needs, yet have a local dealer to set it up and support it).

I haven't regretted it a moment. My other bikes - a steel tourer and a steel road bike -- are different enough from the CD that I can't say one is "better" than the others, but the CD's ride character is certainly as good as anything else I've ever ridden. In other words, it's plenty stiff laterally (and at 215 pounds I can make a bb shell flex if it's going to) and nicely compliant vertically (it's my preferred bike for centuries because it's so comfortable, although having 28mm tires also helps with that).

The frame is still in perfect condition, AFAICT, after about 8000 miles.

I'm not sure I'd choose a particular bike just because of the frame material. In fact, I know I wouldn't. But if I were making a pro/con list, I'd put ti in the "pro" column, based on my experience with mine.

RichC
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Old 03-26-03, 10:29 PM
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I own a Litespeed Classic after having ridden a steel frame for about 5 or 6 years and the difference is very noticeable. I have to admit that this may be due to the fact that the litespeed has a very nice carbon fiber fork where as the steel frame (Bottechia) had a cro-moly fork. Anyway, the Ti frame is very quick and very responsive. I also have to metion that the Litespeed will hit a pothole and keep rolling as if nothing happened (well, a medium-sized one anyway). Besides Ti never rusts and no paint to chip.
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Old 03-26-03, 11:18 PM
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Here's that TST link: http://www.titaniumsports.com/ It's really Titanuim Sports Technologies not true sports ....
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Old 03-27-03, 07:46 AM
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All: Thanks for the extra info. I'm sure my next bike will be a ti bike but I'll be a while before I can get one. I think what I'm going to do is reward myself for losing weight by buying a carbon front fork for my K2. I just need to determine how much weight I should loose before I reward myself. (I'm thinking about 5 pounds should do it )

RonH: If your wife bought you a Litespeed for your birthday what did you have to buy for her?

Zack
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Old 03-27-03, 10:09 AM
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Don't ignore steel; it has lost a little weight (NOT important, btw!) and custom steel is a stone bargain, esp. US and UK made frames. The benefits of perfectly-fitting design can be amazing, and steel's rust "problem" is a grossly exaggerated red herring.
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Old 03-27-03, 10:24 AM
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oscaregg: I'm aware of steel, and they are great bikes. My K2 is my first non-steel bike I've owned. I would love to walk into a shop somewhere and tell the folks - hear I am, measure me and build a bike custom fit to me

Zack
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Old 03-27-03, 01:28 PM
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Hi Zack,

Would you consider buying used ?

There sure are lots of great buys available on mtbr, e-bay, local biking community etc. Because of its strength, ti is probably the least likely frame tubing to suffer any damage from crashes, thus minimizing the risk of purchasing something second-hand. I've purchased complete used bikes: a Merlin, Litespeed, and Diamond Back Racing all for less than 1K ea.

In addition to all the positive aspects posted by others: i.e. ride quality, strength, subtle charm .. I am particularly pleased with the ease of cleaning / maintenance, no paint, and no concerns with metal fatique or frame failure. It is also nice to have no worry when clamping ti tubing into bike workshop stands. I use the DBR for daily work commutes year round, no problem with possible damage of rust or corrosion from road salt or rain.

pl
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Old 03-27-03, 02:22 PM
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RoadDog: Certainly I'd consider a used bike. I've been watching some on Ebay just to see what price they end up selling. My only problem with buying online is that there's no ability to test ride ahead of time. As long as I can ride a similar model ahead of time I'd buy online.

I'd certainly buy a used Lemond having previously owned one of them.

Zack
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Old 03-27-03, 03:02 PM
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Here is a pic of my Habanero Team Issue. The frame is quite stiff and at my size (6'-2" 190Lbs) I can't flex it. This is by far the best (and most pricey) bike I've ever owned so comparison to any of my previous bikes wouldn't be fair.

I can say the ride is great. The fat 25mm tires help to smooth things out though. My time on the bike has been lmited to the last month or so since the weather has cleared. But I can say that every day I feel more and more at home on the bike and I'm very happy with the bike.

By the way, I did a custom fit on a Serotta Size Cycle before I ordered the bike. The idea was to duplicate the Habanero's geometry to make sure I got the right size.

Tom
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Old 03-27-03, 03:49 PM
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Zack,

Right .. you'll have to know what frame geometry will best work for you. I do see, upon occasion, where an internet buyer has to turn around and resell something because it just didn't give the right fit ... even after tweeking saddle / post / bar / stem.

I think as long as you are attentive to the details of actual measurements, how measured (ctr. to ctr. / ctr. to top etc.), your chances of a successful transaction should be fairly decent.

Yes, the opportunity to test ride is always the best option. That DBR I purchased used (locally) I was able to test ride and was amazed it worked out. The frame size is only 15 1/2 ctr./ctr. but the top tube is 22" so I have a lot of titanium seat post exposed which gives me a little 'rear suspension'. If I would have seen those measurements posted on a web-site I would have never considered the bike. The Merlin (e-bay) is an 18.75" ctr./ctr. with a 23.5" tt and both bikes fit me fine with a minimal difference in stem length or rise .. go figure ? ?

My best to you !
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Old 03-27-03, 05:52 PM
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Habby: Sweet looking bike! When I bought my Lemond I was fitted for it in advance with the Serotta Size Cycle system. I didn't think about using those measurements when I bought my K2 recently. In fact, Donna and I are going up to Atlanta on April 4th to get our bikes adjusted using the Serotta system. Our LBS doesn't offer a fitting service so I'm sure the bikes are going to need some tweaking.

Could you please tell me what the difference is between the standard frame and the team issue frame? I can't seem to tell from their web site what the difference between the two frames is.

Zack
....maybe Santa will bring me one
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Old 03-28-03, 02:00 AM
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I would also agree with OscarEgg. I have a steel bike that I ride almost everyday with over 70,000 miles on it built in 84 with no rust inside or out and it has never been treated with Framesaver. I also have a 77 Schwinn Traveler that I use to leave locked outside where it got rained on LOTS and I even rode in on the beach and got it wet lots of times with salt water, and that thing has no rust except for the rear dropouts have some light surface rust where the paint is gone due to the release scrapping the paint away.

I do believe that if you live on the Southeast coast of America or in the midwest where salt is used on snow covered streets than use the framesaver product to protect the frame-but mostly to ease your mind!

BUT TI is one of those materials that you would never have to worry about but it can be expensive. Also there has been some talk about the cheap TI frames were made of TI that came from Russia and supposely the Russian TI is not as good as American TI. Just because it says made in America, that could mean assemble in America with Russian TI being used unbeknowst to you.
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Old 03-28-03, 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by ZackJones
Zack Wrote:

Could you please tell me what the difference is between the standard frame and the team issue frame? I can't seem to tell from their web site what the difference between the two frames is.
The difference between the standard Habanero road bike and the Team issue version are purely aesthetic. The standard road bike has traditionally sized tubes and straight seat stays. The Team Issue has an oval down tube and s-bends in the seat stays.

There is no difference in ride between the two bikes though. I just liked the looks of the Team Issue bike better.


Tom
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Old 03-28-03, 01:35 PM
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Tom: Thanks for the clarification.

Zack
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Old 03-28-03, 08:00 PM
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I ride a Litespeed Classic (3Al/2.5V Ti), but I can't say it's a better ride than a good steel frame. I like it for the lightness and freedom from corrosion worries. If I ever feel the need to upgrade, I plan to check out a good, light, steel (specifically, Serotta) frame.

I've had the Classic for a little over 2 years, and in that time, I really haven't spent much time thinking about a new bike. Maybe a new gruppo, or wheels, but not the frame. And I did e-bay another decent bike I had, because I just never rode it. I guess that says something.
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Old 03-30-03, 06:25 PM
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Originally posted by roadbuzz
I've had the Classic for a little over 2 years, and in that time, I really haven't spent much time thinking about a new bike. Maybe a new gruppo, or wheels, but not the frame. And I did e-bay another decent bike I had, because I just never rode it. I guess that says something.
See. That's exactly it. The Ti frame will last you a lifetime. You can dress it up with new "stuff" but the frame will just keep going and going. Unless you slam it into your garage door while on your roof top bike rack. Doh!

Anyway the decision is ultimately yours so take your time and see and touch as many bikes you consider buying to make the best decision.
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Old 03-30-03, 06:58 PM
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Originally posted by Bobsled
The Ti frame will last you a lifetime.
Yeah. But I think I'd better buy some 1" threadless headsets and store them in a vault, while I still can.
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