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Who buys a Ti Bike these days?

bmxboy10bmxboy10 Posts: 1,847
edited September 2019 in Road buying advice
Just thinking about building up a Ti bike again. I had a Van Nicolas about 9 years ago and follow the Ti Bike Club thread but there are not many people posting about Ti these days nor do they seem to be as popular generally. Is that because its fallen out of favour for steel or is there another reason do you think?
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  • pblakeneypblakeney Posts: 11,348
    Prices of carbon bikes have plummeted since then while the price of Ti has risen.
    People's buying habits reflect this.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • Still ride my Litespeed Vortex that I bought new about 11 years ago. Beats any carbon bike I've owned since hands down.
  • MatthewfalleMatthewfalle Posts: 17,571
    Step's Ti bike is bloody gorgeous

    #bikeenvy
    Postby team47b » Sun Jun 28, 2015 11:53 am

    De Sisti wrote:
    This is one of the silliest threads I've come across. :lol:

    Recognition at last Matthew, well done!, a justified honour :D
    smithy21 wrote:

    He's right you know.
  • joe_totale-2joe_totale-2 Posts: 949
    edited August 2019
    The quality of aluminium frames has got better with brands such as Mason and Bowman, the ride quality is near enough the same with these bikes as some Ti frames. Likewise there's good quality steel which isn't too heavy used by other brands like Fairlight.
    All these brands offer a product that is often cheaper than Ti unless you're cool with a Planet X Ti frame (Which I've only heard good things about to be fair).
  • step83step83 Posts: 3,737
    Step's Ti bike is bloody gorgeous

    #bikeenvy


    Danke, needs a good clean mind.

    Ti bikes are often more expensive than carbon so that puts them out of many people budgets, alone with as Joe said Aluminium becoming better in terms or ride quality now people simply go with the cheaper option, which you cant blame them for.
    Carbon has become cheaper mainly because theres more industry geared up to do it and its not as complicated nor as labour intensive, you can semi automate aluminium and carbon production, Ti less so, plus you cant weld Ti in open air so theres an extra cost for gas and vacuum systems.
    Then you have shapes, Ti is going to be an extruded section. Alloy can be hydroformed and carbon is moulded so you can get those aero shapes people like these days.

    Basically put its expensive to work which in turn pops the price up thus making it a near niche product.

    A plus point though if you go to any event you'll always get nice comments about the bike, unless it's the MF's then you'll find them drooling over it :lol:
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,283
    I think I've seen more Ti bikes lately than I have in a long time.

    Hmmm - maybe I need one - its the only material I'm missing in my bikes ?
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    The old adage used to be cheap, light, strong; choose two, and the choice came down to:

    Cheap and light - alu
    Cheap and strong - steel
    Light and strong - Ti

    With the arrival of carbon and improvements in alu manufacturing these days you could argue you can get all 3 in alu or carbon, so the case for Ti is less compelling.

    That and the fact that some Ti frames seemed to crack and then were reputed to be harder to properly repair.

    Think if I was in the market for an expensive new bike I'd still consider Ti, along with the more exotic steel tubesets.
  • There's something deeply depressing about an adult seeking approval from others for buying a bike.

    If you want one then buy it. What anyone else thinks or what is de rigeur is irrelevant.

    It's just a bike. It's where it takes you that's important.
  • fenix wrote:
    I think I've seen more Ti bikes lately than I have in a long time.

    Hmmm - maybe I need one - its the only material I'm missing in my bikes ?
    Don't forget to add a Super Magnesium frame when they become available.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,283
    Sounds kind of flammable?
  • fenix wrote:
    Sounds kind of flammable?

    Handy when it gets dark and you've forgotten your lights
  • asprillaasprilla Posts: 8,440
    I've just bought a Dolan ADX frame and it's lovely. It's replacing a Canyon Endurace AL that's been on commuter duty for a few years as I wanted something that would take a rack and guards.

    At around £850 for the frame, fork and seat post I thought it wasn't too expensive.
    Mud - Genesis Vapour CCX
    Race - Fuji Norcom Straight
    Sun - Cervelo R3
    Winter / Commute - Dolan ADX
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 3,609
    A titanium bike isn't necessarily a rational purchase in terms of balance between cost and performance. Rather, they look nice and won't rust or fatigue and more often are "forever bike" purchases.

    I'd guess that a large.proportion of buyers start with "I want titanium" and go from there. I know I did.

    Aluminium frames will always eventually fatigue. Perhaps not in the normal working lifetime of a bike, but that used to be a consideration anyway. Carbon frames offer best performance and best cost/performance benefit by a mile, particularly in these days of aero, but don't appeal if you want to eschew trendy and mass market. Or rather, if you do, the cost rockets. Steel frames are more in the same space as ti, I suppose, but if you want to go full bike porn you'd probably end up choosing a ti frame over steel.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,283
    Is any bike a forever frame ? I know people who have had Ti crack so its not bulletproof.
  • asprillaasprilla Posts: 8,440
    fenix wrote:
    Is any bike a forever frame ? I know people who have had Ti crack so its not bulletproof.

    This is my second Ti frame. The first cracked at the BB shell, but I reckon that was as a result of my LBS breaking it (considering they returned it with an 73mm BB and told me the issue was with my frame, not the BB). Couldn't prove it though.

    I've stayed away from Ti, and that bike shop, until now.

    A chap I know is on his second ADX. The first cracked after 15k km and the second has around 32k km on it. Dolan replaced the first under warranty.
    Mud - Genesis Vapour CCX
    Race - Fuji Norcom Straight
    Sun - Cervelo R3
    Winter / Commute - Dolan ADX
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 3,609
    fenix wrote:
    Is any bike a forever frame ? I know people who have had Ti crack so its not bulletproof.
    Of course they sometimes break. But that's a bears/woods comment isn't it?

    They don't fatigue like aluminium or rust like steel (both of which can also crack at welds). Carbon fibre bike fracture, or have defects such as voids or dry zones.

    Excepting manufacturing defects and crashes, the frames most likely to still be rideable in X years, where X is a lot, are carbon fibre and titanium. That's just materials science.

    Oh and can we not get into the nitty gritty of how you can still get rusting issues with stainless steel. Would take too long.
  • bmxboy10bmxboy10 Posts: 1,847
    There's something deeply depressing about an adult seeking approval from others for buying a bike.

    If you want one then buy it. What anyone else thinks or what is de rigeur is irrelevant.

    It's just a bike. It's where it takes you that's important.
    Not seeking approval BTW just curious.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,283
    fenix wrote:
    Is any bike a forever frame ? I know people who have had Ti crack so its not bulletproof.
    Of course they sometimes break. But that's a bears/woods comment isn't it?

    They don't fatigue like aluminium or rust like steel (both of which can also crack at welds). Carbon fibre bike fracture, or have defects such as voids or dry zones.

    Excepting manufacturing defects and crashes, the frames most likely to still be rideable in X years, where X is a lot, are carbon fibre and titanium. That's just materials science.

    Oh and can we not get into the nitty gritty of how you can still get rusting issues with stainless steel. Would take too long.

    I think you're agreeing with me then - no bike is forever. Don't worry about it - just buy what you want.
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 3,609
    fenix wrote:
    fenix wrote:
    Is any bike a forever frame ? I know people who have had Ti crack so its not bulletproof.
    Of course they sometimes break. But that's a bears/woods comment isn't it?

    They don't fatigue like aluminium or rust like steel (both of which can also crack at welds). Carbon fibre bike fracture, or have defects such as voids or dry zones.

    Excepting manufacturing defects and crashes, the frames most likely to still be rideable in X years, where X is a lot, are carbon fibre and titanium. That's just materials science.

    Oh and can we not get into the nitty gritty of how you can still get rusting issues with stainless steel. Would take too long.

    I think you're agreeing with me then - no bike is forever. Don't worry about it - just buy what you want.
    I wasn't worrying about it. Just addressing the normal confirmation biased comments that are tripped out on these threads. Used to be the same with carbon forks. Or the glue between aluminium and carbon components. Didn't worry about those either.
  • wongataawongataa Posts: 854
    I would like a titanium bike because I think titanium looks great unpainted and it doesn't rust.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,286
    I'm still keen to experience the fabled magic carpet ride of a Ti framed bike. Wouldn't buy one expecting it to last forever, but at my age whatever I buy will likely outlast me...
  • wongataa wrote:
    I would like a titanium bike because I think titanium looks great unpainted and it doesn't rust.

    My Vortex looks the same as the day I picked it up. Any blemishes are easily removed with a kitchen scourer 'going with the grain'. I ordered new decals about 7 years in (due to a few chips), supplied FOC by Litespeed in Chattanooga. Old decals removed with acetone, new ones applied...good to go.
  • slowmartslowmart Posts: 3,841
    keef66 wrote:
    I'm still keen to experience the fabled magic carpet ride of a Ti framed bike. Wouldn't buy one expecting it to last forever, but at my age whatever I buy will likely outlast me...

    I had an Indy Fab TI Deluxe, the first frame failed which was replaced under warranty FOC, tyre width and pressure are more indicative of a good ride rather than frame material which is more marketing BS IMHO.. Yes it was a beautiful bike to look at as the frame and geometry were art like.

    Plenty of admiring comments from those who knew about bikes but massively understated in unpainted form.

    Would I purchase a tI frame again, probably not as my Tarmac does everything I need and is massively more capable than myself in terms of ability. Although I was looking a a new s works but even I’m having trouble justifying the outlay against perceived benefit but I do find the new Sagan edition trouser stretchingly beautiful.

    And I know what you mean when you’re buying items which you consider may last longer than you!
    And God created the bicycle, so that man could use it as a means for work and to help him negotiate life's complicated journey.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 10,861
    keef66 wrote:
    I'm still keen to experience the fabled magic carpet ride of a Ti framed bike.

    Prepare to be underwhelmed...
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 10,861
    Don't forget to add a Super Magnesium frame when they become available.

    Two words - Kirk Precision..
  • Imposter wrote:
    Don't forget to add a Super Magnesium frame when they become available.

    Two words - Kirk Precision..
    Completely different materials and properties. Super magnesium is an extruded alloy not cast magnesium.

    https://alliteinc.com/

    https://road.cc/content/tech-news/24858 ... minium-and
  • shortfallshortfall Posts: 2,182
    edited August 2019
    From your second link:

    At the moment you can’t buy a bike made from Super Magnesium but when or if bike brands utilise it the company is confident the price will be comparable with aluminium but cheaper than carbon fibre. But the real test will be how the new alloy rides, and for that, we’ll have to wait a while.


    Crunching the numbers on Super Magnesium
    With any material that's supposed to be the Next Big Thing for bike applications, the devil is always in the detail. Allite's initial announcement of Super Magnesium is light on detail — and that's being kind.. It would be great if they could bring it to the mass market though.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 10,861
    Imposter wrote:
    Don't forget to add a Super Magnesium frame when they become available.

    Two words - Kirk Precision..
    Completely different materials and properties. Super magnesium is an extruded alloy not cast magnesium.

    https://alliteinc.com/

    https://road.cc/content/tech-news/24858 ... minium-and

    so it is - I just saw the word 'magnesium' tbh...
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 3,609
    Imposter wrote:
    keef66 wrote:
    I'm still keen to experience the fabled magic carpet ride of a Ti framed bike.

    Prepare to be underwhelmed...
    I thought it was supposed to be springy and make you feel connected to the road. Unlike wooden carbon fibre or stiff aluminium. But steel is real and it's a game of two halves isn't it?
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 10,861
    Imposter wrote:
    keef66 wrote:
    I'm still keen to experience the fabled magic carpet ride of a Ti framed bike.

    Prepare to be underwhelmed...
    I thought it was supposed to be springy and make you feel connected to the road. Unlike wooden carbon fibre or stiff aluminium. But steel is real and it's a game of two halves isn't it?

    Apparently, "it surges forward with every turn of the pedals, willing you to go faster and faster.." I believe that phrase has been in use in bike reviews since the early 80s...
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