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who makes the lightest frame?(22 posts)

who makes the lightest frame?esbike
Jun 7, 2001 1:06 AM
I hope one of you has the answer to this question. On the Trek website, they claim that the 110 OCLV carbon frame on the 5700/5900 is the "world's lightest production frame". What exactly does that mean? I guess that leaves open the possibility of lighter frames from "boutique" manufacturers. Just out of curiosity, who makes these exotic frames?

A related question: do most people think that the future of light racing bikes will be with a carbon frame? It seems like there would be more room for technological advancements with a synthetic material vs. aluminum, titanium, or steel. Trek must have a pretty good R&D budget working on that.
re: who makes the lightest frame?xyz
Jun 7, 2001 7:24 AM
Good Lord - here we go again......
Here's a list from previous postsPsyDoc
Jun 7, 2001 7:54 AM
These were offered up by several different people.

Casati MU:2 at 2.024 pounds

Calfee Dragonfly built up @ slightly under 13 3/4 lbs. Frame weighs in around 2.12 lbs

Carrera Gold Knight 2 lbs

F. Moser Laser Scandium 2.1 lbs both according to red rose imports

Quattro Assi Scandium weights around 2 1/4 lbs (54cm)

De Rosa UD frame (Deda U2) weight is 1.98 lbs

De Rosa Merak is 2.42 lbs

Giant TCR ONCE is 2.16 lbs
De Rosa not that light - beware the lies!freespirit
Jun 7, 2001 4:20 PM
I weighed a De Rosa UD 55 cm at a bike shop at 2.5 pounds. THE MANUFACTURERS LIE! Several claim to sell the "lightest production frame." Only one can be right, right?

Make sure you compare apples and apples, which probably means stripping everything from the frame, including headset, seatpost clamp, cable guides, etc.

Beware, too, that some makers of light frames included boat anchor forks with the framesets, and also that sloping frames require extra long seatposts, which adds around 50-75 grams, depending upon the seatpost and the length. The whole package gets heavier.
Weight vs. StabilityCima Coppi
Jun 7, 2001 8:07 AM
Factor in when looking for the lightest bike around, you may be benefiting on the climbs, but you sacrifice stability on the descents. A 14-16lb bike will have issues on fast corners and accelerations on steep descents. If you live where there are no hills, weight should be not much of an issue anyway, but in Colorado where I live, the descents are extremely technical, fast, and worthy of a heavier ride (18-19lbs) to keep the tires on the road and the bike upright.
agree (nm)Hank
Jun 7, 2001 9:36 AM
Yeah, but did you see . . .9WorCP
Jun 7, 2001 3:01 PM
Jose Azevedo's wicked fast gnarly descent on stage 17 on the Giro?
What was he riding? A Giant TCR!! Hmmm... Sherwin and Ligett were comparing the guy to freakin Sean Kelly. It was an awesome display on a super-light bike. Weight is not the issue or at least as significant as you might think.
weight hurts when cornering, stopping, and accellerating (nm)freespirit
Jun 7, 2001 4:21 PM
Jun 7, 2001 5:58 PM
the sickest thing I ever saw was one of Pantani's descents on a tour stage a few years back, and he was riding one of those ultralight AL Bianchi frames. And speaking of Sean Kelly, we all know he was riding a Vitus. So it's definitely the rider. I've seen guys on cross bikes go down stuff most FS riders would try to walk. I've seen singlespeed riders clean steep inclines that made more geared riders walk. It's the rider. But I'll still take a steel bike over AL...
Bad logicrailer
Jun 7, 2001 10:35 AM
While my aluminum frame weighs 3 lbs., it is much stiffer than even a 4.5 lb. steel frame. I have never ridden a sub-2.5lb aluminum frame but Im sure they are adequately stiff and atleast as stiff as a Ti or steel frame. In fact, a TCR would probably track stiffer than any typical steel or Ti frame.
Now when youre getting in to the 15 lb range, usually some pretty skimpy parts are used. If you can stick to a good, solid stem, bars and wheelset you should be fine on descents.
The extra weight of a bike (2-3lbs more) is not going to help you stick to the ground like someone mentioned. In fact lighter weight will out corner something heavier. Although this is minimal. THe total rider package of (160lbs + 18lbs) will not be affected to greatly by 2 lbs. THats just barely over a one percent change. Not noticeable.
logic vs. experienceHank
Jun 7, 2001 10:58 AM
all the superlight bikes I have ridden felt sketchy at speed on rough pavement and in twisty, tricky descents. Now, there are probably too many variables at work here to isolate one thing (geometry and fit is obviously a biggie, as are tires), but for bombing down a twisty descent with fast off-camber corners and rough pavement, I'll take my heavy old steel Merckx over just about anything. Back when I was racing, I cared a lot more about having a bike that was confidence inspring on the descents - especially important when you're tired and people are chasing you. All the ultra-stiff AL lightweights that I've ridden just didn't have that solid, connected feel I get from a bike like the Merckx. I should also note it really depends where you ride - I'm referring to the rides I used to do when I lived in Nor Cal. The roads I'm riding now and the roads I rode on when I lived in the Midwest didn't offer those kind of crazy, challenging descents.
Merckx galore!!Cima Coppi
Jun 7, 2001 11:22 AM

Which Merckx do you have? I have an '87 Corsa Extra (SLX/SPX tubeset) that will take anything I throw at it. Happy riding.

Merckx galore!!Hank
Jun 7, 2001 11:39 AM
late 80s/early 90s Reynolds 653 Century. It's actually my rain bike. Got it used two years ago. My main ride is a custom SL/SP frame built for me in 1989. But I'd always wanted a Merckx - used to drool over the Molteni orange Merckxs when I worked in shops in the 80s/early 90s. They are just so solid and I love the geometry. I'd like add a MX Leader to the fleet one of these days - noticed that the price just came down on them, too.
Merckx galore!!Cima Coppi
Jun 7, 2001 3:51 PM

Make sure to ride the Corsa 0.1 and the MX Leader. The Corsa is a lighter frame, lugged still, and has the differencial shaped tubing like the MX. I think you'll like the ride.
Merckx galore!!Hank
Jun 7, 2001 6:00 PM
yeah, the Corsa 0.1 looks nice, too. I just kind of like the wretched excess approach of the MX Leader. And I'll be needing a Molteni orange one, too.
Jun 7, 2001 6:38 PM
A 16 pound bike could be ridden by a 135lb rider like me, or a 180 pound rider. The 2 pound difference in bike weight is insignificant.
re: who makes the lightest frame?VaMootsman
Jun 7, 2001 8:27 AM
If you don't mind me saying, this is a really silly question. The most overated, under-meaning spec in the entire sports world.
Specs.Cima Coppi
Jun 7, 2001 8:31 AM
Agreed, but what's the most under-rated spec??
Rider weight (nm)Mike Prince
Jun 7, 2001 9:25 AM
Rider weight (nm)Cima Coppi
Jun 7, 2001 10:39 AM
How about the weight of water bottles throughout a ride (from full to empty)? I guess then, as the weight of the bottle goes down during a ride, the riders body weight increases, then decreases from perspiration. Does it ever equate to anything in the end??
re: who makes the lightest frame?esbike
Jun 7, 2001 9:34 PM
Hey dork,

Why do some people get so cranky about a simple question? If you aren't interested in this topic, nobody is forcing you to click on this message thread. BTW, notice I was only asking out of curiosity from a technical standpoint, not mentioning anything about bike racing.
re: who makes the lightest frame?MCCL
Jun 7, 2001 11:24 AM
Try Ciocc. They are right in line with DeRosa at 1.9lbs. Does it matter about weight? Well it must,wasn't it Ullrich last year that traded off his bike at the top of the mountain in the TDF. What kill's me most is when I see these ultra light bikes and a person with a bladder on his back and a front side that looks the same. Oh well.