's Forum Archives - General

Archive Home >> General(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 )

Lance confirms new frame at LBL...(20 posts)

Lance confirms new frame at LBL...teoteoteo
Apr 22, 2003 5:04 AM
I am sure you will all see soon enough but LA has confirmed he'll be on the the new Trek frame for LBL. A lot of speculation but it is for sure a semi compact. Perhaps full carbon or similar to Saturn Lemond in the fact that it is part carbon part ti.....

I have some inside sources that my cough up the rest of the details before LBL but so far they have only said "you'll see". Now that announce has been made maybe they'll spit it out and if they do I'll share.....

Below is text of LA interview on his site...

Q While we will have details soon on re: new equipment you will use at L-B-L, can you give us a quick preview of things to come?

A. Well, again the 10 speed Dura Ace like last week in Amstel, plus an all new Trek frame.
high time they dropped that unsightly top tube!BergMann
Apr 22, 2003 6:08 AM
Excellent! So Trek has finally fixed the one remaining flaw with the superlight: that traditional geometry!
Long live the long seatpost!
question on compacts....ClydeTri
Apr 22, 2003 6:40 AM
one supposed advantage of compact frames is less flex..but, isnt that a wash with the increased flex of the seatpost being so long?
differences are esoteric and trivial, anyway nmDougSloan
Apr 22, 2003 6:55 AM
If not for "esoteric and trivial" what would be discussed here?MikeBiker
Apr 22, 2003 6:59 PM
we could get into countersteer again... :-) nmDougSloan
Apr 22, 2003 7:51 PM
Flex in post and in frame two different things perhaps...teoteoteo
Apr 22, 2003 7:08 AM
Flex in a post would seem to me to be better than a noodle for a frame. I guess this could go on forever if it were to serve as a debate but A flexy post would just seem to add some compliance to the ride without affecting the power transferred through the frame....who knows for sure as I am far from an engineer.
beat me to it!BergMann
Apr 22, 2003 7:28 AM
Your intuition is right, and you don't have to be an engineer to field test it.
The differences are far less esoteric if you spend a lot of time off-road. Mountain bikes lost a lot of weight when the (steel) frames went from traditional to compact, and in the days before rear-suspension was common, the (flexy titanium!) seatpost was the first place you went to add comfort for longer rides.
This stuff isn't as tangible on the road in the age of 2lb traditional carbon frames, but it is still a factor.
Less trivial: less weight! Plus a different kind of flex!BergMann
Apr 22, 2003 7:16 AM
Cinch: Shorter tubes are lighter (trading length on four frame tubes vs. one post shaft)!

Also, as I've learned as an MTBer, a certain amount of seatpost flex (particularly fore and aft when hitting obstacles) can be a good thing comfort wise.

The upside for those worried about flex:
That seatpost, however flexy, is no longer a factor when you are making a maximum effort out of the saddle (hello climbers and sprinters)!
Even when seated, it is first and foremost the frame itself that handles the lateral loads that cause BB deflection, so the stiffness of the frame itself is the major factor there.
A flexy tubeset will remain flexy whether you build it in traditional or compact geometry, and vice versa.

The bottom line: traditional road frames are just using superfluous material. Using the same tubeset on two frames with the same effective top tube length, the compact frame will turn out lighter.
are we really going to debate all this again???russw19
Apr 22, 2003 8:49 AM
This has been covered ad nausea on this board in the past.

Without really going into my own thoughts... here's a few that are wrong none the less. First off, a seatpost is thicker than a seat tube and an equal length span of post weighs more than an equal length of seat tube. There are other factors here too... look at the trig. the top tube on a sloping frame will be longer, not shorter than that on a traditional frame. That's why we talk of "effective top tube length" instead of "actual top tube length" when talking compacts. The weight savings is at worst minimal, and at best negligible to non-existent. Sure a Litespeed Ghiasallo weighs less than a Vortex, but it's not the same bike. And you have to look at complete bike weights to see the truth.. when you do, the math doesn't lie. They are the same, if not off one way or the other buy a waterbottle bolt's worth of grams. You have to compare equal bikes to see the truth. Often times there are differences like the Ghiasallo uses a standard cup headset. That is because it takes more material to support the use of an integrated design. So that factors in a few grams...

Seat post flex is unsupported. It can travel in any direction 360 degrees if your post is flexy enough. That is going to waste more energy because the post will oscillate. A span of seat tube or the bottom bracket shell is supported by triangulated trusses. It will not flex in the same planes or to the same extent that seatpost will. Most compact frames are not any stiffer than traditional frames when you measure things like bottom bracket flex to any degree that would be noticed be a real world rider. However all frames are noticeable stiffer than the stiffest seat posts. So that theory is moot. 1st rule of engineering.. if you need to support a span, triangles are your friend. A bike's seat post has 3 supporting it. The seat stays form one, the chain stays form two, and the front triangle forms the third. There is no such support for a seat post.

Hello climbers and sprinters, whoever made the above statement is neither. Maximum effort should be put in in the saddle where you are most efficient. Not out of the saddle. I jump out of the saddle when I sprint, then sit down and ride to the line. So does every single top level sprinter in the world. Lance Armstrong, one of the world's top climbers right now, rarely gets out of the saddle on climbs. If he does it is to up his cadence and look around, then he sits his butt back down on the saddle where it belongs, where he's efficient (read fast!) No serious climber or sprinter tries to achieve maximum effort out of the saddle. That's stupid.

The only true statement in the above post is that a flexy tubeset is flexy in either compact or traditional builds. True... what does that prove? Nothing. The opposite is just as true.. a stiff frame is just as stiff built either way, all other factors being equal. Seatposts are the weak link in the chain. They are more flexible than frames. And flex in all directions because they are not supported.

The real bottom line has nothing to do with superfluous material as you are thinking about it. The real bottom line is that Giant put out the Compact Geometry frames and Specialized jumped on board at the same time so they could cut production costs. How? Easy.. if you make compact geometry frames, you can make less sizes to fit your customer base if you eliminate or at least minimize the standover height from the sizing equations. That way you can now make 5 sizes to cover the entire range of what used to take 9 sizes to make. You can cut down on tooling and production costs if you order 5 bottom bracket shells and 5 different seat tubes and top tubes instead of 9. Production costs go down, prices stay the same, profit margin goes up, company is happy, consumer gets screwed.

Add to that the trend of carbon fiber rear triangles which are actually cheaper to make and install into a waiting frame tha
Cut off, here's the end....russw19
Apr 22, 2003 8:51 AM
Add to that the trend of carbon fiber rear triangles which are actually cheaper to make and install into a waiting frame than welding a rear triangle to it, and your customer is now paying more for technology that is costing less and less to produce everyday. This is a bad thing for consumers, but a great move for bike manufacturers. They have slick add campaigns to trick you into believing compact with a carbon rear end is better than what you are currently riding. You buy it, they win. The bike industry was hurting bad about 5 years ago. Sales of bikes (and especially high end bikes) were at an all time world-wide low 5 years ago. Then came new hype.. compact frames and carbon rear ends. And you are buying it hook line and sinker... it's a good thing you do because you are helping to save the bike manufacturers from going out of business. Ask anyone who has been around the industry for a while.. they will back up everything I am saying. It's all marketing hype designed to get you to buy a product that costs less to make. And the bad part of all that is the savings are not being passed on to you. You, the consumer, is getting ripped off.

The bottom line is that there is no real difference other than what you may think looks better between compact and traditional geometry bikes. I can not argue what is pleasing to your eye, so I won't try. But there is only a difference to the manufacturer in compacts and that is less manufacturing costs. It's a fact, not my opinion. Believe what you want, but don't try to back it up with a bunch of BS and not get called on it. If anyone wants to pick apart my post, cool, I am ready to hear it. It should be funny to see just what an uninformed consumer will believe these days. But when you are done, go pick up a copy of "Bicycle Retailer" and read it cover to cover.. it's the only magazine that tells the straight up truth about the state of affairs in the cycling world today. Why? Because it's a business journal and speaks to the business side of the cycling world. The side consumers don't get to see and don't realize exists.

My argument for compact:Joe Connell
Apr 22, 2003 9:24 AM
I have relatively short legs. I'd like to have kids one day. Compacts give me the top tube lenght I want and the standover height I want. Stiffer, less weight, etc? I don't care.

Apr 22, 2003 10:13 AM
So, wall street is wall street and the same principles apply to all manufacturers. The object is to produce a high end product at low cost, keep a good reputation and be as successful as possible. Now, what a manufactuerer /store /shop /industry does with all of its profits after making sure its bills are paid is what impresses me. Whether it will encourage its employers with mew avenues of creativity and some flexability on ideas or donate $$ to projects to help the industry its in like giving to local cycling organizations or making new ones or making sure old ones don't die....that's what's important isn't it. Who cares some people spend 4-6K on a bike while others spend half that or less. People will spend money on almost anything and a bike isnt so bad.
We need to make sure the business of cycling doesnt decline anymore then it has. Talk to any local shop and they will tell you its a rough ride. Most shops above VA can only be bike shops in the summer and are ski shops in the winter. The southeast has the benefit of having year round bike shops. The cycling world is by no means the automobile world, where they have so much capital that they can make products of art instead of practicality.
couple of things:dante
Apr 22, 2003 10:26 AM
isn't flex mainly a bad thing between the bb and the dropouts? cranking hard causes the bb to want to twist, and ends up robbing power. I'm not sure what the detriment of a flexy seatpost is, but the benefits would include smoother ride.

lighter weight: longer tubes require thicker sidewalls to maintain the same stiffness as shorter ones. So even beyond the "uses less tubing" argument, the tubes that are used can be thinner and therefore lighter.

Can't comment on the carbon stays...

As for the bike companies charging more for what costs less to produce, how is that any different from CDs? They cost less to produce than old analog tapes, but they sell for more.

it LOOKS like a mountain bike.colker
Apr 22, 2003 12:22 PM
sells easier to people used to buying mountain bikes. i believe it's the main difference. looks are everything in the post modern world.
another lesson from mountain bikes: you must outdate technology fast and have everyone buying a new bike every 3yrs. new headtube standards, new headset systems, new tubes (carbon rear ends), lighter tubes, new gearing etc...
just like the computer market, everything gets outdated fast.
That's _ad nauseum_ Russ, and your math isn't so hot either...BergMann
Apr 26, 2003 12:39 PM
I don't know where you had "trig", but effective top tubes (measured along an imaginary line paralell with the ground) are always going to be _longer_ than a sloping top tube on two frames with the same head and seat tube angles. Try taking a measuring tape, holding one end fixed at the head tube and move it down the seat tube -- your actual top tube length will get shorter and shorter all the way down untill somewhere around the top water bottle boss (from which point it will gradually get longer)!

As for "maximum effort," take a look at my post -- I said "maximum effort out of the saddle." What I had in mind was the explosive efforts that sprinters and climbers make when they attack, which is almost _always_ out of the saddle. You ever seen a sprinter sit back down in a hotly contested sprint? No, they'll stay out of the saddle for maximum leverage and the ability to "lunge" at the line.
If you want to define "maximum effort" as maximum power output over an extended period of time, we all know time trials are done in the saddle.

As for the number of sizes a manufacturer produces, that has nothing to do with the geometry, that's just the logic of mass production.
PS - how to count to 4BergMann
Apr 26, 2003 3:34 PM
Regarding Russ' schtick about a length of "thick" seat post shaft weighting more than a comparable butted seat tube, not only does he seem to have forgotten that both of the stays, and the top tube have gotten shorter on a compact frame (measure it!), but he seems to have forgotten that seat tubes are of larger diameter (= more material) and seat posts are butted as well. What thin-walled butted length you lose in the seat tube you regain in the smaller-diameter butted (i.e. lighter) post shaft.

In the interest of science, I measured the wall thickness of my Easton post in the clamping area (= thickest walls). THe result: 2.7mm. I then measured the wall thickness on my aluminum frame at the clamp: 4mm. Oops, there goes that "thick post" hypothesis!

Of course there are countless variables to tweak in the frame weight and stiffness equation, but if Russ had read my original post carefully, he'd have noticed that my point was _not_ that the compact frame is inherently stiffer, but that it required less material (my implied point on stiffness was that seatpost stiffness was not as important as frame stiffness because even when riding seated, the seatpost never experiences the kinds of loads the BB area does under out-of-saddle efforts).

All things being equal (tubeset, effective top tube length, headset type), the frame using less (of the same) material will be lighter.
That's my point and I still stand by it!
Russ...superb, I thinknealrab
Apr 22, 2003 10:19 AM
That was a great read. I can't say 100% if you're right or wrong, but it made sense and I'm buying it. I do ride Giant and really like the quality of the ride, but I understand your explanation of things and I gotta say it was really a high quality response/post.
Russ...superb, I think<-- thanks...russw19
Apr 22, 2003 12:34 PM
I am not arguing one way or the other that either design is inherently "better" just that the reasons thrown about for compact being better is pure fictious nonsense. It's like people have to come up with these crazy BS technical reasons to justify something new. Heck, what happened to buying a bike because you like the look of it? People act like that's a bad thing these days. It's not. If you like compact frames... by all means, get one! Be happy and ride it more. You will be a better person for it in the long run! I cannot and will not argue against that point of view. Or the guy who replied that he has short legs and it fits him better, Great! Perfect bike for him! Hope he rides it till it dies and then gets another! That I can't argue against either. If it fits better, it's the right choice for you. No argument from me there.

Also, I am not saying the increased profit margins are inherently bad either. If it's keeping the industry afloat, we all win. And in that case the company is giving back to the consumer in the long run. That was something that looked like I was arguing against in my post, I assure you, I was not. I like bikes. It benefits me to see more companies in competition so I get better bikes cheaper. But the notion that a compact frame is any better is a load of crap. If it really was better, everyone would be making them and only them. But to say compact is better is like saying steel is better. You will have an argument on your hands from some fans of Ti and Aluminium and Carbon bikes. The fact is that it's not any better than any one single choice of frame material.

But compact geometry has caused people to replace bikes that were otherwise fine so that they could have the newest, latest, greatest.. that helps the economy and the bike world in particular. That is the good that comes about in all this.

So if you ride a compact bike, cool! Keep on riding! I am NOT knocking you for it. But it's not 'better' than a standard geometry bike unless it is better for 'you.' If you like the look of it better or the feel of it better, that's esoteric like Doug says. It is your perception and I certainly can not argue against human perception. In that case and that case only, compact is better if you percieve it to be.

Russ, Compacts, Standover, and Fewer Frame SizesFez
Apr 23, 2003 9:22 AM
By the way, good reply about compact frame sizing.

But one thing that has always escaped me is how Compact Frame manufacturers are able to get away with offering fewer sizes. True, compact takes the standover issue out of the equation to a large extent, but that is only a small part of the fit equation.

But what about the idea behind traditional frame sizing? Frames are made in 1 or 2cm increments, with folks ideally looking for a certain length stem, a certain seat angle, etc.

With Giant Compacts, most "avg" proportioned men between 5'7" and 6'2" are going to fit in 2 or maybe 3 frame sizes. That means the stem length is going to probably vary wildly between 90-140mm and the amount of spacer stack will vary wildly because everyone has to fit on the headtubes offered on just those 2 or 3 frame sizes.

And with fewer frame sizes, most folks are more likely to be "in between" frame sizes. So if one gets the smaller one, there will be an exorbitant amt of seatpost showing with a long stem. If one goes larger, the bike will just feel... large.

I'm not criticizing the compact or sloping geometry. I just think the idea of fewer sizes is phucked up!