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OCLV carbon fiber frames(3 posts)

OCLV carbon fiber framesbean1019
Mar 8, 2003 7:09 PM
I am interested in buying a used 5500 trek bike. I was wondering if I were to buy one would it be able to withstand me riding it relatively hard even though someone else has riden it pretty hard as well. Basically I guess what I am asking how is the durability of the OCLV carbon fiber frames? I know they are excellent new, but would it be worth it to buy one used which is only 1 year old? Thanks

Aaron
I bought mine 3 years old...YoungRcR
Mar 9, 2003 5:43 AM
and have been riding it now for 2 years. Including some very hard racing and a few crashes as well. No flaws in the frame (except scratches of course) but the frame is perfectly aligned and in perfect strucutal condition. I would definately recommend an OCLV bike.
Some factors to considertorquer
Mar 10, 2003 9:33 AM
First of all, let me state that I've had OCLV's since 1998, and I love them; they've almost cured me of bike lust (though its mainly been my wallet that's kept me monogamous, bike-wise).

But, assuming the frame fits you, there have been enough reports of OCLV frame breakage on this and other similar boards that I would ask the following questions:

How old is the frame? Breakage seems to have been more common in earlier model years.

What size frame, how heavy is previous owner and what mileage? Obviously, larger frames, stressed by big muscles, are more likely to break.

What price? No small part of the appeal of these frames, for me, was their (relative) bargain prices. By buying used, you may forgo Trek's lifetime repair warrantee (this could depend on Trek's and your own relationship with your LBS), but these frames can be repaired, so even if you have to pay, if the asking price is low enough you may come out ahead.

Its hard to know how high the breakage risk really is; Trek sells a lot of OCLVs (relative to other "pro-grade" frames) so some are bound to break, and their owners may just be more likely to complain on-line(although many of the reports came from "a freind of a freind, who heard from a teammate...").
In my opinion and experience, however, that risk is overblown.