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Toughness of Klein road frames(9 posts)

Toughness of Klein road framespogo
Feb 25, 2002 6:41 AM
I am looking at highend road frames and am considering a Klein Quantum race. I have read generally favorable comments on the quality and performance of the frame. I have never owned a large tube diameter aluminum frame before. My question is how tough or resistent is this frame to denting or getting banged up from general use or from accidents such as the 5 year old knocking the bike over in the garage or when I get it on or off the bike rack and bump it etc. Does the Klein at least compare with high end steel frames in this area.
Feb 25, 2002 8:03 AM
An oversized thin-walled al tubeset like the Klein will not compare to the ding resistence of a high end steel frame. A hard crash or driving into the garage door could well result in some damage. 5 year old knocking it over ... well ... that shouldn't cause a problem. It isn't an eggshell, after all.
re: Toughness of Klein road framesTroyboy
Feb 25, 2002 8:38 AM
I had a Quantum Pro for over 5 years and thousands of miles. It held up perfectly. I just got another QP as a matter of fact. It is my opinion that there is a fine line that separates ding resistance between all materials. It is truly hard to beat the Kleins in my experience. You have to ride one to know.
Depends on what "high end steel" is usedNessism
Feb 25, 2002 8:39 AM
Many of the steel tubesets come in a varity of thicknesses and butting configurations. The thinnest of these, employing wall thicknesses of .4mm or even less, are prone to denting.

In general though, a steel frame will be more durable. Just stay away from the super-light versions if durability is important.
No problem with Klein frame....DINOSAUR
Feb 25, 2002 9:32 AM
You don't have to worry about dinging or denting the frame of a Klein. My Klein is three years old and has survived a crash in which I ended up in the hospital for seven days. I also had it fall off the hook in our garge because I didn't have it all the way in the hook and in landed on the concrete floor with no damage. Kleins are guaranteed for life for the oringinal owner. Gary Klein was the first one to start manufacturing over sized al tubing and they have it down to a science.

As comparing to a steel frame, you are looking at apples and oranges. It all depends on what type of ride you want, your body weight, and the types of roads you ride. Klein are what can best described as being harsh riding. You feel every single thing on the road. A lot depends on your wheel/tire selection and your psi. As much as I love my Klein I just ordered a new steel bike. I find if I ride my Klein day in and day out on the lousy pot holed roads I ride it tends to beat me up. Of course my age is a factor here at age 59. A younger guy probably wouldn't have this problem.

I really considered purchasing another Klein, the deciding factor is that it didn't make sense to own two al bikes. The reaon I'm going with a new bike is that my Klein is two sizes large for me.

If I were to purchase a new Klein, I'd purchase the frameset (Klein refers to it as a "fuselage") and have it built up. That way you would get a better fitting and I don't know how long Trek is going to stick with Bontanger as they seem to swap their in house components every couple of years. Also take a look around a see if you can find a NOS Quantum Pro frameset. The QP's have a nicer fork and it rides better than the QR, not to say the the QR is a bad ride.

I love my Klein, I'll never get rid of it, it will just be nice to be able to pick from two bikes depending on what type of ride I want on a particular day. For me the Klein would be best for short, quick rides, but a lot of guys use them for century bikes.

Another factor is geometry. The new Kleins have a 73.5 STA, my '99 QR has a 74 STA. I have a little problem with the forward riding position and I have my saddle pushed all the way back in the rails in order to dial in my KNOP. Make sure that you don't have a problem in this area.

I've never heard anyone bad mouth their Klein, nice neat welds, beautiful paint (you don't want to try to patch it up) and they ride nice and smooth if you ride on smooth asphalt roads.

I think the whole concept behind oversized al is for big guys who want a light stiff frame with no flex in the bottom bracket.

As for comparing with steel, well, I'm going back to a steel bike, if this means anything. Kleins tend to be a tad too twitchy for a everyday ride for my tastes....
To clarify my own post...jtolleson
Feb 25, 2002 9:54 AM
I never meant to imply a reliability problem with Klein, just to address the "same as steel" issue.
To clarify my own post...DINOSAUR
Feb 25, 2002 10:04 AM
I understand what you are own feeling is that steel is the best tubing for a bicycle frame..not to say that I don't like al.. it boils down to preference...My Klein is probably mad at me now...
re: Al. vs. steel, dent resistance.guido
Feb 25, 2002 12:35 PM
I've been running a Columbus SL frame for many years. It has .6 mm tube thickness butted to 1.0 mm at ends. I have dented the the top tube once by the handlebars in a crash, and another time when the bike fell over on a parking meter. But after numerous crashes, the integrity of the frame is still intact: spot-on alignment, no cracks or paint chipping anywhere.

All the Klein owners I've known have always been very happy with their rides and have never had any problems, even the types of dents described above. Thin-walled steel tubing is quite delicate if struck from the side, yet very strong front-to-back. Klein's oversized aluminum alloys are easily just as strong in both directions. Strength has never been a question about Kliens, only how well they absorb shock. If you ride hard, this is a stiff and efficient platform, and it'll hold up as good as any steel.
re: Al. vs. steel, dent resistance.R-I-D-E
Feb 25, 2002 11:42 PM
I agree that a well made aluminum bike will hold up just fine and be pretty resistant to dings and such. I used to own, a Klein MTB and it held up great.

I would urge you to look at the newest Klein that is made with carbon fiber seat stays. That would give you the lightness and stiffness of O/S aluminum, yet the comfort of a carbon rear. Nice combo.