Poll

Have you ever ridden a carbon framed bike?  Whole frame, not just carbon forks.

Yes.
No.
What's carbon?
Is that a soot bike?

Author Topic: Ridden a carbon framed bike?  (Read 4194 times)

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #50 on: 03 June, 2024, 08:31:45 am »


‘I’ll probably never buy a carbon bike again’ - Olympian Chloe Hosking goes all in on alloy with her own bike company



Quote
"I think cycling industry marketing has been very effective at convincing people they need to spend an insane amount of money on carbon frames when the reality is you can purchase an alloy frame that weighs about the same and is less likely to crack.”


Some dubious claims in that piece. 

She says, "The vast majority of people do not need to spend 20 grand on a carbon bike".  Well quite - I'm pretty sure the vast majority don't.  Carbon frames can be nearly as cheap as al.

"In addition to keeping the cost down, Hosking believes that alloy frames offer the rider a sense of security. Should the rider crash or fall, an alloy bike is less likely to crack or chip than a carbon bike."  Is that true?  I always thought al was prone to cracking.

I'd take her assertions more seriously if she wasn't marketing her own stuff.

Aluminium cracks from repeated flexing; i.e. ride an aluminium frame hard a lot and it will eventually crack.

CF cracks/breaks from crush damage, usually from over tightening fittings but also crash damage.

Aluminum cracks are often gradual and visible.

CF damage can be invisible (on inside of tube) until they fail catastrophically.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

citoyen

  • Occasionally rides a bike
Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #51 on: 03 June, 2024, 09:34:25 am »
CF frame production is way more complex and time consuming than aluminium.

That piece about Hosking bikes spells this out quite clearly and explains why the top-end HR4 that comes with SRAM Red AXS is £5.3k and not >£9k.
"The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles."

Cudzoziemiec

  • Ride adventurously and stop for a brew.
Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #52 on: 03 June, 2024, 11:05:46 am »
I presume the "20 grand" reference is her talking in AUD (so about 10k GBP). It doesn't make sense otherwise.
Riding a concrete path through the nebulous and chaotic future.

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #53 on: 03 June, 2024, 11:19:10 am »
On what basis are you making that assurance?

There already is a Supersix in aluminium. It's called the CAAD13. It is 2/3 of the price of the same spec in carbon.
It's quite simple really.
The way a product is priced is not by the sum of the parts, but it's about how they perceive the market, in other words how much they think people are prepared to pay for that item.
So, if Pogacar next year is equipped with the latest Colnago aluminium frame, that will be be the pinnacle of their range and it will demand the highest price, regardless of how much it costs to make.

Many respectable Chinese factories sell their high end frames direct to the public, for anything between 500 and 1000 USD. They do make a profit, so we can assume the cost of putting the thing together will be say half of that or less.
If the cost of a frame in terms of parts, labour, tooling and whatnot is in the hundreds of USD, then what difference does it make to the RRP of the bike if you halve it by going the aluminium route?

The reason CAAD is significantly cheaper than the Supersix is in essence because it has a lower margin, rather than it being significantly cheaper to make.

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
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Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #54 on: 03 June, 2024, 02:12:31 pm »


‘I’ll probably never buy a carbon bike again’ - Olympian Chloe Hosking goes all in on alloy with her own bike company



Quote
"I think cycling industry marketing has been very effective at convincing people they need to spend an insane amount of money on carbon frames when the reality is you can purchase an alloy frame that weighs about the same and is less likely to crack.”


!


Carbon fibre doesn't "crack".  Jet fighters are made from carbon fibre.

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #55 on: 03 June, 2024, 02:25:38 pm »
My two carbon bikes don't quite fit what Flatus is saying.  I have done a "try out" on those super responsible, stiff fun bikes.  However my two are

- Specialized Roubaix.   It's about 10 years old, with rim brakes.  The BB is somewhat stiffer than you'd expect by generally it is a very bendy, bouncy bike.  It also handles like an old boat.  For long distance ( I did two PBP on it) it's great, sooo comfy

- Genesis Datum.  I got this for my 50th birthday pres.  It's an "adventure" or gravel or whatever, semi off road.   Good tyre clearance.  It's stiffer than the Roubaix, quite light and climbs well.  It's comfortable but I think this is as much due to the big tyres as the frame.  They don't make it anymore

I said before that "Carbon doesn't crack" and this is true.  However the only thing to watch out for is rubbing.  A misadjusted inner ring that causes some chain rub on the chainstays is a nuisance on a steel bike but an expensive problem on a CF bike.  If you can avoid this particular thing then CF is a great frame material with all kinds of benefits


Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #56 on: 03 June, 2024, 02:28:26 pm »
Corrosion has always worried me with aluminium.  In a very minor way I was badly let down by ali nipples on a rear wheel that turned to dust on a 400 and forced an abandon  :facepalm:

Let's be honest - it's not the wonder material Chloe Hosking is making out.  It's been used for making frames for decades but many people just prefer other materials - for a whole range of reasons.
The sound of one pannier flapping

citoyen

  • Occasionally rides a bike
Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #57 on: 03 June, 2024, 02:52:30 pm »
Jet fighters are made from carbon fibre.

Yebbut not in the same factories where they make carbon fibre bikes. You can't pick up a jet fighter for £500 from Temu.*

One of the reasons Hummingbird bikes are so expensive is that the carbon frame is built by a company that also builds racing cars, and to the same standards. It's probably overkill for a bike but that's what you're paying for.


*actually, I'm not 100% sure of this - I haven't checked. I wouldn't be entirely surprised if you could
"The future's all yours, you lousy bicycles."

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #58 on: 03 June, 2024, 03:33:42 pm »
On what basis are you making that assurance?

There already is a Supersix in aluminium. It's called the CAAD13. It is 2/3 of the price of the same spec in carbon.
It's quite simple really.
The way a product is priced is not by the sum of the parts, but it's about how they perceive the market, in other words how much they think people are prepared to pay for that item.
So, if Pogacar next year is equipped with the latest Colnago aluminium frame, that will be be the pinnacle of their range and it will demand the highest price, regardless of how much it costs to make.

Many respectable Chinese factories sell their high end frames direct to the public, for anything between 500 and 1000 USD. They do make a profit, so we can assume the cost of putting the thing together will be say half of that or less.
If the cost of a frame in terms of parts, labour, tooling and whatnot is in the hundreds of USD, then what difference does it make to the RRP of the bike if you halve it by going the aluminium route?

The reason CAAD is significantly cheaper than the Supersix is in essence because it has a lower margin, rather than it being significantly cheaper to make.

I'm afraid your basic premise that aluminum and CF framesets cost the same to manufacture just is not true.

The fact is you can buy an aluminium bike frame on Ebay, from a far east factory for £100. You cannot but a direct factory frame for the same.

There are a number of reasons why your direct Chinese CF frame is cheaper. They don't have to pay for advertising, branding, race team sponsorship (which runs into tens of millions), frequent new molds rather than generic ones, they don't need to pay wholesalers and retailers, nor do they offer warranties that mean anything.  Its possible that overall quality of construction is lower, although some expensive frames can also be poor. I've yet to hear of a cheap generic factory frame that is outstanding.


FifeingEejit

  • Not Small
Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #59 on: 03 June, 2024, 04:55:30 pm »
Jet fighters are made from carbon fibre.

Yebbut not in the same factories where they make carbon fibre bikes. You can't pick up a jet fighter for £500 from Temu.*

One of the reasons Hummingbird bikes are so expensive is that the carbon frame is built by a company that also builds racing cars, and to the same standards. It's probably overkill for a bike but that's what you're paying for.


*actually, I'm not 100% sure of this - I haven't checked. I wouldn't be entirely surprised if you could

I used to MTB with someone who worked for one of the smaller F1 teams of the time.
They on occasion used their small scale carbon manufacturing facilities to fix team members bikes, the thickness of the lay up on different frames was apparently interesting, with cheaper frames using considerably less than more expensive frames.

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #60 on: 04 June, 2024, 10:16:37 am »
On what basis are you making that assurance?

There already is a Supersix in aluminium. It's called the CAAD13. It is 2/3 of the price of the same spec in carbon.
It's quite simple really.
The way a product is priced is not by the sum of the parts, but it's about how they perceive the market, in other words how much they think people are prepared to pay for that item.
So, if Pogacar next year is equipped with the latest Colnago aluminium frame, that will be be the pinnacle of their range and it will demand the highest price, regardless of how much it costs to make.

Many respectable Chinese factories sell their high end frames direct to the public, for anything between 500 and 1000 USD. They do make a profit, so we can assume the cost of putting the thing together will be say half of that or less.
If the cost of a frame in terms of parts, labour, tooling and whatnot is in the hundreds of USD, then what difference does it make to the RRP of the bike if you halve it by going the aluminium route?

The reason CAAD is significantly cheaper than the Supersix is in essence because it has a lower margin, rather than it being significantly cheaper to make.

I'm afraid your basic premise that aluminum and CF framesets cost the same to manufacture just is not true.


I didn't say they cost the same to make, I said the difference does not justify the difference in RRP.

The retail price of a SSix HM frame 2024 model is £ 3750. The last CAAD 13 I can find had a RRP of £ 1000, but that was pre-inflation, so let's call it £ 1200 in today's money.
I am quite happy with the idea that a carbon frame costs 3-4 times as much to make, but ultimately, our wallet does not work in multipliers, it works in cash, so there is a difference of  £ 2550 between the two, which is nowhere near the difference it costs to make the two, but ultimately that is what hits you.
The cost of making the thing might be (throwing an exaggerate number) £ 1000 for the carbon and under £ 250 for the aluminium. So 750 pounds difference (or slightly more) become £ 2550 when you fork out to buy one.

Multipliers is what fuxx us up!

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #61 on: 09 June, 2024, 11:22:55 am »
I can see the scientific/engineering argument for a CF bike, but as I don't race there's no point for me.
When someone makes a high end CF fixed gear bike aimed at fat tyres and mudguards I'll be interested.
simplicity, truth, equality, peace

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #62 on: 10 June, 2024, 10:40:16 am »

I didn't say they cost the same to make, I said the difference does not justify the difference in RRP.

The retail price of a SSix HM frame 2024 model is £ 3750. The last CAAD 13 I can find had a RRP of £ 1000, but that was pre-inflation, so let's call it £ 1200 in today's money.
I am quite happy with the idea that a carbon frame costs 3-4 times as much to make, but ultimately, our wallet does not work in multipliers, it works in cash, so there is a difference of  £ 2550 between the two, which is nowhere near the difference it costs to make the two, but ultimately that is what hits you.
The cost of making the thing might be (throwing an exaggerate number) £ 1000 for the carbon and under £ 250 for the aluminium. So 750 pounds difference (or slightly more) become £ 2550 when you fork out to buy one.

Multipliers is what fuxx us up!

Unfortunately, multipliers is what keeps shops in business.
The bike shop you buy from has paid the bike company somewhere between 40-60% of what you are paying RRP.
So a frame that cost 4x as much to make, may only make the same profit for the bike company as the cheaper frame.
Also don't forget, VAT is % based.

Basically, the more it costs to make something, the RRP price difference is a multiple, even if the profit to the company is the same.


Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #63 on: 10 June, 2024, 10:48:11 am »
My two carbon bikes don't quite fit what Flatus is saying.  I have done a "try out" on those super responsible, stiff fun bikes.  However my two are

- Specialized Roubaix.   It's about 10 years old, with rim brakes.  The BB is somewhat stiffer than you'd expect by generally it is a very bendy, bouncy bike.  It also handles like an old boat.  For long distance ( I did two PBP on it) it's great, sooo comfy

- Genesis Datum.  I got this for my 50th birthday pres.  It's an "adventure" or gravel or whatever, semi off road.   Good tyre clearance.  It's stiffer than the Roubaix, quite light and climbs well.  It's comfortable but I think this is as much due to the big tyres as the frame.  They don't make it anymore

I said before that "Carbon doesn't crack" and this is true.  However the only thing to watch out for is rubbing.  A misadjusted inner ring that causes some chain rub on the chainstays is a nuisance on a steel bike but an expensive problem on a CF bike.  If you can avoid this particular thing then CF is a great frame material with all kinds of benefits

I have a datum. Despite being marketed as a 'comfortable' endurance bike, its incredibly stiff. To the point of being quite uncomfortable if tyre pressures are too high.  They were actually made by/same factory as Ridley. Ive ridden a high end Ridley race bike once, brutal, never ridden anything so uncomfortable on any tiny bump. Super fast tho, accelerated like nothing ive ever ridden. 

My old TIME lugged carbon frame (alu lugs, carbon tubes) was very comfy even with 23mm tyres, took bumps like a champ but didnt feel any flex under power.  I currently own a newer model (carbon lugs and tubes) and its a lot stiffer, and less comfortable from it.

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #64 on: 10 June, 2024, 03:10:30 pm »

I didn't say they cost the same to make, I said the difference does not justify the difference in RRP.

The retail price of a SSix HM frame 2024 model is £ 3750. The last CAAD 13 I can find had a RRP of £ 1000, but that was pre-inflation, so let's call it £ 1200 in today's money.
I am quite happy with the idea that a carbon frame costs 3-4 times as much to make, but ultimately, our wallet does not work in multipliers, it works in cash, so there is a difference of  £ 2550 between the two, which is nowhere near the difference it costs to make the two, but ultimately that is what hits you.
The cost of making the thing might be (throwing an exaggerate number) £ 1000 for the carbon and under £ 250 for the aluminium. So 750 pounds difference (or slightly more) become £ 2550 when you fork out to buy one.

Multipliers is what fuxx us up!

Unfortunately, multipliers is what keeps shops in business.
The bike shop you buy from has paid the bike company somewhere between 40-60% of what you are paying RRP.
So a frame that cost 4x as much to make, may only make the same profit for the bike company as the cheaper frame.
Also don't forget, VAT is % based.

Basically, the more it costs to make something, the RRP price difference is a multiple, even if the profit to the company is the same.
yes,we are saying the same thing.
However, these days, with RRP, it is the manufacturer that sets prices and it’s down to distributors and retailers to meke the most profit or not.
When you buy direct, you remove the multipliers,or at least most of them.
Given the level of support you get from most retailers these days, I am shocked more people don’t buy direct. I guess it is still the stigma against Chinese factories, allegedly selling inferior products, as well as the overhyped western warranty, which often is hardly worth the paper it is printed on.

Re: Ridden a carbon framed bike?
« Reply #65 on: 10 June, 2024, 04:28:20 pm »
The bigger volume the tyres , the less the frame material matters when it comes to comfort.