What frame material for my new bike ?

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What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby Leeflatz » 24 Mar 2018, 12:13pm

Had me old Fondriest road bike since 2005.
Columbus aluminium frame, goodness knows what forks, all Campag bits.
Great bike, still do regular 60 mile+ rides on it.
This year's me 60th birthday, so thinking of treating myself to a new bike .
What do youze all think of carbon bikes?
Is it better to stick to ally or are carbon better?
Last edited by Graham on 24 Mar 2018, 7:42pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Title

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Re: New bike

Postby gxaustin » 24 Mar 2018, 3:49pm

I think it all depends on the fit and the geometry of the frame. I had a carbon frame a year or two ago and I couldn't get comfortable on it - too racy, even with an angled stem. so I sold it. Recently I've bought a carbon bike with a shorter frame (reach) and greater stack and I'm very happy with it so far. From past experience I'd go for fit above all else.

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Re: New bike

Postby oldmanonabike » 24 Mar 2018, 4:29pm

I would go for comfort, try as many as you can.
I'm not getting older,just gaining more experience

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Re: New bike

Postby Roadster » 24 Mar 2018, 6:10pm

What about titanium instead of either?

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Re: What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby peetee » 24 Mar 2018, 10:43pm

I would recommend a custom steel frame from a builder that would tailor every single tube and braze on to suit you and your riding style. Truly something to be proud of.
Current status report:
Back on two wheels in deepest Pastyland and loving every minute. Mission: to enjoy big, bad hills again.

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Re: What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby Brucey » 25 Mar 2018, 11:12am

this isn't like choosing a commuting or touring bike, where elements of practicality are likely to override some other considerations; I would suppose that the bike will mostly be used in good weather, that total mileage isn't likely to be excessive, the bike will be well-maintained and won't see rough treatment, and you would expect to have it for about a decade or so.

This being the case I'd agree with others that fit is the first priority, second comes ride feel (which includes comfort) and beyond that there are considerations regarding practicality, durability, what colour it is, and so forth.

By all means ask advice in a shop but expect that to be coloured by their preferences and stocks. The final arbiter is trying various bikes out and seeing which suits you best. You might even find that steel isn't such a bad material after all.... :wink:


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Re: What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby Raleigh Steve » 25 Mar 2018, 9:46pm

I’ve recently been going through the same thing.

My bike due for replacement was a 10 year old carbon road bike. Really liked it, but it was showing its age. It was fast, comfortable, light - I didn’t really expect a new bike to be any better.

I found an old (1992) Reynolds 753 frameset for sale, so I decided to move the parts from the carbon bike onto that as a stop gap whilst I thought more about what I should get as a long term replacement. I’ve always been interested in trying a 753 frame.

As things have turned out, I love the 753 frame. It is heavier than the carbon frame but is a delight to ride. I feel like I’m faster on it and don’t have any interest in a new carbon bike any more. So, as Brucey says, don’t count out steel.


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The utility cyclist
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Re: What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby The utility cyclist » 26 Mar 2018, 5:55am

Depends what comes higher up on your tick box of needs/wants and your overall budget.

Often as not a decent handbuilt steel frame is not much difference to a handbuilt Titanium frame, I had a quick look at one of the better known frame builders in the UK and a Reynolds 853 frameset was £1800 :shock: You can buy a very decent carbon frame or titanium one for that money.

If it was a one bike does all then a titanium frameset, full carbon fork with eyelets front and back including pannier mounts (just in case), personally I'd be happy with V-pegs and have TRP CX9 mini Vs mated with whichever mechanical groupset, I went for Ultegra as it's on a bike I use as a winter racer, touring, long rides, visiting friends and nipping to the shops. Braking is superb, is easy to set up and maintain and by having the Vs you can have as wide a tyre as you would need for pretty much all the riding you'll ever do.

If only for going fast/no need for wider than a 28mm tyre (maybe a 30) then a decent carbon frameset that isn't too aggressive could be a goer.
You can certainly also get a lot of bang for your buck with an alu frameset too, current Cannondale CAAD12 is very popular and gets great reviews.

There's so much choice these days and you can get really bogged down deciding what to go for but if you've a club maybe get the chance to have a go round the block if you're friendly with others or get to as many bike shops as you can once you've narrowed bikes down on minimum criteria.

I've got bikes in all the 4 main materials and a couple of spares :lol: saves a lot of aggro deciding frame material for a start off :lol:

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Re: What frame material for my new bike ?

Postby Leeflatz » 27 Mar 2018, 7:53pm

Thank you for all your inputs
I think I'll be keeping my Fondriest for winter and ropy days, (probably most of the year up here in the north west!).
I hear what you say about custom steel
I have my oldest bike, a traditional tourer with a Reynolds double but frame, which I wouldn't part with for any money, and I'll tour on 'til it's time to hang my cleats up.
But I think I'll stick to aluminium, maybe with a carbon fork.
I notice you can get a top end ally for the same money as an average carbon and aluminium is ok for me .
Thanks all, again.