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Aluminum Life Span(18 posts)

Aluminum Life SpanDeadGame
Jan 27, 2003 3:23 PM
I have a 97 Giant TCR Team, I have ridden it hard for 2,000 and before that who knows whereas I bought it used but in good shape. How much life does it have left? Should I be concerned about it cracking up in a mad sprint?

What Aluminum frame do you recommend?
It dependsMR_GRUMPY
Jan 27, 2003 5:51 PM
It depends. Are you 250 Lbs ?? Are you a Cat 3 sprint king ?? Do you put out 1200 Watts in your sprints ? If you have only ridden it for 2000 miles, I would say that you have quite a bit more life in that frame. I've got a 99 TCR Team also. I used it for TT's for 2 years, and crits last year. This year I'm going to use it for road races and club rides only, in order to make it last longer. Road races put a lot less strain on frames than crits do.
Al has no life spanKerry
Jan 27, 2003 6:13 PM
But a specific frame under specific use conditions has a range of expected use. However, no one can estimate what that might be except to say that super light frames don't last long in heavy usage, and larger frames tend to fail sooner because they are flexed more by their riders. Any frame that is failing after 2K miles would not be much of a frame, and the reputation would get out quickly. The answer is to inspect for cracks at high stress locations - paint cracking can be just a surface issue, but close inspection may show that the paint cracked because the Al cracked.
Urban LegendREPO42
Jan 28, 2003 11:24 PM
I think that lifespan of Aluminum crap is way overrated. Made up by these bike manufactures to keep us buying every 2 seasons. Unless you put tremendous amount of abuse on your frame it should last more than 2000 miles. I don't think the average Joe Schmoe could tell if a frame is flexing any more than when they first purchased the bike. If you can then please send me some Tour De France tickets.....
Rural Truthshirt
Jan 29, 2003 10:54 AM
My 3-year old aluminum bike creaks a LOT more than it did when new, and yes, you can feel a bit more play in the bb area.

Actual measurements?Kerry
Jan 29, 2003 5:29 PM
"more play in the BB" means what? Do you have some actual measurements, or do you have such great kinesthetic sense that you just know the bike is more flexy? The problem here is that unless the metal is in the process of failing, it will not have any difference in resistance to flex. The excess creaking is much more likely to be a result of lack of lube in metal to metal contact areas. If it really is the frame creaking, then you must have a crack somewhere, which means the frame has already failed.
Yes, Kerry. 2.546889 mm to the left and 2.42290 to the rightshirt
Jan 29, 2003 5:55 PM
The frame flexes more than it did when I got it. How do I know? I don't know, how do you know when you have to take a sh*t? Do you measure your colon diameter? I don't know about you, but I can just tell.

The creaking is due almost exclusively to the aging of the aluminum. How do I know? Yeah, this time it's more scientific. The bb has been replaced. My pedals have been repacked. I have a brand new crankset. The bb is lock-tited in place. My QRs are lubed. When I apply force to the pedals, there is exponentially more creaking the harder I pedal.

Next step: I'm going to lube the inside of the frame at all the welds around the bb shell.

And yes, it's possible there may even be a crack somewhere. The frame is currently at my LBS being inspected...


Rural Truthbugleboy
Jan 29, 2003 8:46 PM
Do you take care of it? Is that because of the frame, or when was the last time you had your bb and crankset looked at?
See aboveshirt
Jan 30, 2003 8:03 AM
the bike's had 3 bbs in the last 10 months, and 2 cranksets. 2 LBSes have been trying to exorcise the demon, in addition to yours truly.
See abovebugleboy
Jan 30, 2003 12:25 PM
Are you sure that it is coming from your BB? The one really bad thing about aluminum is that sound travels. I have a cannondale and like any other bike it started to make a few creaks here and there. The one that took the longest to find was the replacable der hanger. That one sounded like the BB was creaking pretty bad and it took forever to find. If your bike has one try removing it, clean it, and lube it. Another one is hub contacts in the rear dropouts. Pedals also. Just some thoughts
I know it isshirt
Jan 30, 2003 2:14 PM
- The bb shell is visibly ovalized.
- The brand new crank set wobbles.
Jan 30, 2003 11:47 PM
This is very confusing... If all the crap that is made of aluminum fatigues, then why would it be worth using?.. Like planes... do they change the wings every year? Or rims, can't say i've ever heard mine squeek. Or how about that aluminum soda can? Does it squeek right before you pop the lid? Dude if aluminum had such a high rate of fatigue then it would be utterly useless... Ever hear of lawyers who sue for negligence? And if you get more flex from the bottom bracket area, it's not the material, but how thin they have stretched it out to save weight. Thinned out steal will be more flexable then a thicker tubing, wouldn't you agree?....
sure, I agree. (nm)shirt
Jan 31, 2003 9:41 AM
I know it isbugleboy
Feb 4, 2003 12:19 PM
if it is visibly ovalized why do you bother trying to fix it. Just get a new bike or frame, yours is scrap metal now
Buy me one and I'll scrap it. (nm)shirt
Feb 6, 2003 3:06 PM
Buy me one and I'll scrap it. (nm)No_sprint
Feb 7, 2003 1:47 PM
Pretty damn good prices at Don't you have a good team deal? I can get a custom painted CAAD7 frame/fork/headset for $700. Not too shabby.
Outa work since Mayshirt
Feb 8, 2003 9:07 AM
all cycling expenses going to Cytomax and chains.
Buy me one and I'll scrap it. (nm)bugleboy
Feb 8, 2003 9:19 AM
I'm fine if you don't want to scrap it, but my advice is save the money that your pouring into it. Your never going to fix it. Ride it till it dies and hopefully by then you can get a new bike.