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Carbon or Alu for Heavy rider

TrinafourTrinafour Posts: 36
edited April 2014 in Road buying advice
Hi Am looking for a new bike but cant decide if I'm better sticking with Aluminum frame or going for a carbon frame. Tricky bit is i'm 108 Kg. I've been riding my Giant Defy for 3 years do rides up to 80 miles (still to break the 100).
Will I notice / benefit from going down the carbon route or should I stay with Alu. Budget is 1500 - 1800. The bike will be used for club runs and sportive type events. No racing.

Posts

  • bmxboy10bmxboy10 Posts: 1,955
    what about a van nicholas ventus
  • AlitogataAlitogata Posts: 148
    Depends on what you want to do with your bike. Both alu and carbon can usually stand rider's weight of 110 kilos. If you intent to use your bike for commuting and some races or audax then go for alu, if you intent to use it only for races then go for carbon.
    Have in mind that in your budget you'll get either a very good Alu bike with good groupset, or an average carbon with not that expensive groupset.
  • BarteosBarteos Posts: 657
    IMO clearance for 28mm tyres will be more important than a frame material.
  • TrinafourTrinafour Posts: 36
    Hi Thanks for the responses.

    I'll be primarily doing club type runs and the odd organised event but no racing.

    The thought of a better groupset on Alu had been my initial thought as getting more bang for bucks. However I had not thought about Ti as any I had seen were out of budget but I've looked at the Van Nic and see it is nicely within budget so can explore as an option now.
  • Wirral_paulWirral_paul Posts: 2,476
    I think you should be more concerned about the wheels rather than the frame material, as a set of 20 spoke factory wheels are going to have a hard time given your weight. Also as said - clearance for wider tyres should be a big consideration (25mm minimum).
  • TrinafourTrinafour Posts: 36
    The wheel issue is an interesting one. I've been on the same factory set that came with my defy riding Scottish roads and not broken a spoke. Whereas one of my buddies who is way lighter than me and has wheels costing more than my bike is forever having issues.

    Is it not more important the quality of the components as a whole and how they all fit together especially around say Bottom Brackets where us larger riders will be applying more torque and general frame strength?
  • tonye_ntonye_n Posts: 832
    Trinafour wrote:
    The wheel issue is an interesting one. I've been on the same factory set that came with my defy riding Scottish roads and not broken a spoke. Whereas one of my buddies who is way lighter than me and has wheels costing more than my bike is forever having issues.

    Is it not more important the quality of the components as a whole and how they all fit together especially around say Bottom Brackets where us larger riders will be applying more torque and general frame strength?
    Trinafour wrote:
    The wheel issue is an interesting one. I've been on the same factory set that came with my defy riding Scottish roads and not broken a spoke. Whereas one of my buddies who is way lighter than me and has wheels costing more than my bike is forever having issues.

    Is it not more important the quality of the components as a whole and how they all fit together especially around say Bottom Brackets where us larger riders will be applying more torque and general frame strength?

    The Giant Defy 1 wheels have a spoke count of 24/28 I think. So not a very low spoke count wheel-set, and that's probably why they are coping with your weight. They also use traditional j-bend spokes, so repair by the LBS would not be that expensive or difficult.
    I have heard just as many people swear by the reliability of Giant P-R2 wheel-sets as those who have no end of issue with these. So quality control seems to be hit or miss with these.

    Wirral_Paul's statement about factory wheels still applies though, as most of the modern factory wheel-sets come with very low spoke count (more like 16/20 or 18/20). And I would wager that your new bike will come with such a wheel-set. At 108kg there is very high likelihood that you WILL have issues with such wheel-set.

    The thing with going for bespoke wheel-set at your weight is that you can then get a high spoke count (32/32) with quality rim which will have weight comparable to a quality factory build. Also because you have more spokes, they can have lower tension and thus be a bit more comfy.
  • elderoneelderone Posts: 1,410
    To my mind if you want carbon then get carbon.If the manufacturer states that its product is capable of carrying your wieght then why worry.The wheels that come with a carbon bike at this price wont be the best but will do what they were built to do.
    Why people scare munger about carbon bikes just collapsing if anyone heavier than twiggy gets on them is beyond me.
    Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori
  • colsoopcolsoop Posts: 217
    I don't think you will have issues regarding frame and weight. I don't think i have seen rider weight limits on frames, (although i could be wrong). You normally see it regarding wheels. If you are a larger rider then a set of wheels with a larger spoke count than the usual 16 or 18 would be a good bet
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,425
    Barteos wrote:
    IMO clearance for 28mm tyres will be more important than a frame material.
    I agree, and go for handbuilt wheels too.
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
  • SFTSFT Posts: 156
    Go for the VN - excellent bit of kit!
  • Dont worry about it, im 125kgs and ive got a carbon frame, also had wheels with low spoke counts and never had problems in all the years ive been cycling. All this weight thing is a bit of a myth unless you go for ultra light all carbon wheels you will be fine on most bikes. You only need to worry about carbon seatposts and make sure they can handle the weight load.
  • Hi,
    To resurrect this older thread.
    I am similar weight to the OP and looking for a new bike.
    In addition to the frame material choice I am also intrigued by disc brakes.
    Will they improve the braking on long descents? I currently ride quite a lot of hills on no 3 yr old aluminium framed Claus Butler with 2300 gears and unbranded brakes with Swiss stop pads.
    Braking is still poor, and I am as slow downhill as up.
    Budget is also similar to OP at £1500 - £2000.
    Current thoughts are Planet X RT 58 or titanium frame both with Ultegra 6800 or a Rose Xeon DX 3000 again with 6800 and discs this time. Also possibly the Cannondale Synapse with Ali frame and discs.
  • Yellow PerilYellow Peril Posts: 4,466
    Consider a Canyon Ultimate AL and with the cash you save get a nice handbuilt wheelset for long rides and training.
    @JaunePeril

    Winner of the Bike Radar Pro Race Wiggins Hour Prediction Competition
  • Carbon is just fassionable at the moment.

    The Canyon AL line looks excellent for the money. Have been eyeing up these two myself for next year...

    https://www.canyon.com/_en/roadbikes/bi ... ab-reiter2

    https://www.canyon.com/_en/roadbikes/bike.html?b=3237

    at 7.3 and 7.2kg you wont find a Carbon at that price that light or with as good a spec.
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    Discs are a good idea if you weigh around 100KG or more as rim brakes , especially in the wet are nowhere near as good. Found this out myself on the first fast descent I did. I was used to Mountain Bike disc brakes and wondered who had stolen my brakes. Even after upgrading and tweaking the rim brakes are not close for power or modulation for heavier riders. The upside is bikes with disc brakes come with stronger wheels with more spokes which is helpful for heavier riders. It's down to personal preference in the end.

    Apart from that make sure you check the manufacturers websites for the maximum load limits and use those as a guide. The load limits will likely be on the safe side and since you are not going to be doing jumps and tricks on the bike all that may happen is things will wear out faster.
  • FransJacquesFransJacques Posts: 2,148
    Carbon is just fassionable at the moment.
    That is the best comment I've seen in a while.

    Rick, with your permission may I capture that in my sig block?

    The Mandela funeral sign language gag is old hat now...
    When a cyclist has a disagreement with a car; it's not who's right, it's who's left.
  • Sorry for coming to this party late, but I'm just shopping around for a new bike too. However, someone above mentioned Canyons for the heavy rider, and I'd like to add that as a rider of 21st plus plenty of change, the Canyon AL Ultimate has been a great bike for me. I've not had a single puncture/spoke problem. My stock wheels take my weight, but they do complain a bit, so I've had to adjust the breaks from time to time to keep the wheels turning. Basically I'm the worst bike owner in the world, I just ride it, I don't do any TLC, and that has led to my bikes demise, as enough things are broken on it now to justify a new bike (in my mind). None of them seem to be down to my weight, though.
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