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Carbon fiber seatpost

Old 06-03-07, 11:02 AM
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k_freese
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Carbon fiber seatpost

Alright, I am sure this topic has certainly been discussed around here ad nauseum. But here is my question: I just ordered an FSA carbon seatpost, and I was assured that carbon components are not fragile and can hold up to the rigors of everyday use (not just for racers with sponsorship who can afford to replace broken parts all the time...). Is this true? I use my bike mostly as a commuter, but I also like to tear up the trails a few times a month. Can carbon parts hold up to daily beatings?

In the past, people have warned me about carbon, saying that if it gets gouged or even scratched, the part may be ruined. I don't actually have to buy the seatpost when it arrives at my LBS, so I could still go with an aluminum piece, but it was priced very well and weighed much less. Thoughts??

Not that it matters, but this is what I ordered... Anyone ride with their stuff?
Full Speed Ahead (FSA) SLK SB-0 Carbon
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Old 06-03-07, 11:10 AM
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Don't think they'd be selling it if it wasn't safe.
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Old 06-03-07, 11:17 AM
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k_freese
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I believe those were the famous last words of Ford Pinto owners before they exploded...
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Old 06-03-07, 11:58 AM
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the problem with carbon seat posts are the people who put them on. they over torque them then they break. so when you get yours use a torque wrench and torque it to the right presure. other than that there really nice. some carbon parts are one year parts which means you should replace it after one year. which sucks
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Old 06-03-07, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by salsa
the problem with carbon seat posts are the people who put them on. they over torque them then they break. so when you get yours use a torque wrench and torque it to the right presure. other than that there really nice. some carbon parts are one year parts which means you should replace it after one year. which sucks
That's the thing... I'd like not to have to replace the seatpost after a year. In fact, I'd like to be able to use the same post for many years. The guy at my LBS said that I should have no problem using a carbon seatpost for a really long time, but I'm still dubious.
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Old 06-03-07, 04:42 PM
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you may have bought a longer lasting seat post. one year seat posts are really light and for racing .you have to look at the seat post you bought it might be a longer lasting seat post. before you pay for it make sure you are under the weight limit.
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Old 06-03-07, 04:45 PM
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The limiting factor is if the seatpost is overtightened. Ensure you (or the shop) uses a proper torque wrench and it will give many years of faithful service.
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Old 06-03-07, 05:20 PM
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aluminum ones dont really weigh all that much
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Old 06-03-07, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by salsa
you may have bought a longer lasting seat post. one year seat posts are really light and for racing .you have to look at the seat post you bought it might be a longer lasting seat post. before you pay for it make sure you are under the weight limit.
Aside from general reputation of any given company, how would one identify a longer-lasting vs. non-longer-lasting carbon seatpost?

Under what weight limit?
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Old 06-03-07, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by MaxBrokeAway
aluminum ones dont really weigh all that much
I know aluminum doesn't weigh very much, but I found this carbon for about the price of a decent Thomson aluminum, yet it weighs considerably less. Given that combination of weight and price, I thought I'd give it a shot.
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Old 06-03-07, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Blue Jays
The limiting factor is if the seatpost is overtightened. Ensure you (or the shop) uses a proper torque wrench and it will give many years of faithful service.
That's what I like to hear!
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Old 06-03-07, 07:59 PM
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I have one on my road bike but use aluminum on my MTB. Make sure that if you wreck with it you replace it. It may not look damaged but once you fatigue carbon to a certain degree it's strength lessens considerably and fractures under a pretty small load after that.
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Old 06-03-07, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Hanzo
Make sure that if you wreck with it you replace it.
For a seatpost?
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Old 06-03-07, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by k_freese
I know aluminum doesn't weigh very much, but I found this carbon for about the price of a decent Thomson aluminum, yet it weighs considerably less. Given that combination of weight and price, I thought I'd give it a shot.
"yet weighs considerably less"....how much is "considerably less" in the real world? Some numbers are claimed, but not actual. This is what my Thomson post weigh...and I KNOW it won't break on me...

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Old 06-03-07, 10:59 PM
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k_freese, if it offers you any feeling of security, I don't recall any of my riding friends breaking any seatposts over the course of a quarter-century of serious riding so far. I've seen plenty of broken saddle rails, but that's about it. No traumatic component failures that resulted in any injury, either. That is also good news.
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Old 06-04-07, 12:10 AM
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/\/\ That's lousy luck. Ouch. I've been lucky enough to have only broken a few pedals and saddle rails in my time. I do know of one friend who broke a crankarm right at the pedal threads...which was pretty surprising. What caused that seatpost failure pictured above?
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Old 06-04-07, 02:39 AM
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Originally Posted by k_freese
That's the thing... I'd like not to have to replace the seatpost after a year. In fact, I'd like to be able to use the same post for many years. The guy at my LBS said that I should have no problem using a carbon seatpost for a really long time, but I'm still dubious.
If you need to ask, then there is doubt in your mind. Personally CF should be used for water bottle cages and non stressed parts. I've seen too many catastrophic failures in road bikes. MTB's see a much harder life than the standard road bike.

I use a Thompson Elite seatpost. They are a little heavier than CF, not much. I've never seen one brake either. That would be my choice. Good luck on whatever you do.


Tim
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Old 06-04-07, 05:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Pete ***erlin
How exactly do you know that?

My pyschic told me so.
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Old 06-04-07, 09:22 AM
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My FSA SLK has been holding up well for about a year now. No external signs of stress (cracks in the gel-coat). Ignore the guy that said to replace it if you crash. Carbon fiber components are
more durable than most people are aware of. If you see stress cracks, sure, replace it, but no reason to replace stuff just because you lay your bike down. My CF kayak helmet has taken some serious hits over the years and is still solid.
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Old 06-04-07, 04:24 PM
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That's not broken, that's just a flesh wound. Yes, I ride, apparently I'm not as "hardcore" as you are,your Royal Anus. I doubt that will happen to MINE, as I was referring to in the earlier thread.
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Old 06-04-07, 04:27 PM
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My aluminum seat post is looking like it's going to break, sooner than later. It's 1 month old.



Hey.. I'm big boned.
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Old 06-04-07, 05:16 PM
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No Carbon Fiber seatposts for me. The thought of being neutered by a broken CF seatpost is more than enough to keep me off of them.
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Old 06-04-07, 05:33 PM
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It seems like people are still very divided about whether or not carbon parts are strong enough to hold up to the rigors of daily use. The reason why I am even in this situation in the first place is because I only have one bike. The bike happens to be an '07 Trek 8500 with full XT (it isn't an ideal daily commuter bike; more of a XC racer). Because of this, I would feel somewhat guilty watering it down with lower-grade (heavier) parts. Nevertheless, I still use it as a commuter 85% of the time. I could get a Thomson Masterpiece seatpost, which weighs the same as the FSA SLK carbon that I ordered (about 200g), but it also costs more than twice as much, and I don't have that kind of coin right now. Really, I should probably get the carbon seatpost for my 8500, build myself a cheap single-speed commuter, and then I wouldn't have to worry about subjecting carbon parts to daily-use beatings...
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Old 06-04-07, 05:38 PM
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That carbon post will be fine as long as you treat it correctly. Torque wrench, no grease, etc.

Carbon only for non-stressed parts? I trust it a lot more than that. I've been riding a mtb with carbon rear stays for 2 years now and it's been perfect, no issues. I have broken a carbon post before but that was because I was stupid and over-tightened it. Just be careful and you'll be fine.

As for the comment about 1-year parts, that's just silly. There are light parts that are not intended for heavy use, but no manufacturer recommends that you replace a component after just one year. Even the lightest of components (I'm thinking AX-lightness, M2, comapanies like that) last much longer than a year.
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Old 06-04-07, 05:39 PM
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For a commuter bike I prefer to have parts that I don't have to think about. Carbon doesn't fall into that category.
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