Monday, 29 August 2016

What The Heck Is "Modulus" Means?

Every bike company liberally salts its literature on frame design with buzzwords mumbo jumbo like high-modulus or even “ultra high-modulus.” But those terms aren’t the bike industry’s to toss around. Carbon fiber is graded by its stiffness, rated in terms of tensile modulus. But what is modulus? Modulus is used to grade different types of carbon fiber, and it refers to tensile modulus or Young’s Modulus, which is the relative stiffness of an isotropic elastic material. So now what the hell is an isotropic elastic material? Think of a carbon tube that has five plies of fiber, each of the plies oriented in a different direction so that all five plies have lines that intersect, much like an asterisk (*). Each of these plies transfer load out away from the center of the asterisk equally, making for a quasi-isotropic formation. Since carbon fiber is elastic in that it can absorb shock, tensile modulus measures how much elasticity carbon fiber has.

This is commonly referred to by engineers as “Modulus of Elasticity” and is a driving force behind the designs of manufacturers like ENVE Composites. Modulus of Elasticity is calculated by dividing stress by strain. Stress is a force applied over a unit area such as PSI or pascals (Pa). Strain is how much a material deforms when stress is applied, and is calculated by how much deformation occurs as compared to the structure’s original dimensions. Imagine when you hit a bump on your bike, how much the frame deflects from and returns to its original dimensions; that’s Modulus of Elasticity.

For carbon fiber, those ratings and the stiffness range each covers are set by the Japan Carbon Fiber Manufacturers Association (JCMA). The carbon is ranked as low, standard, intermediate, high  and ultra high modulus depending on its modulus of elasticity. Here is a quick run-down on the different grades: 

Low Modulus below 200 GPa (Giga Pascal)

Standard Modulus 200-280 GPa 
Relatively strong and stiff, this is the least expensive form of carbon fiber and is found almost exclusively in entry-level frames. Used In: Full tubes, tube junctions, high-stress areas around the head tube, lower down tube, and chainstays (even on some high-end bikes).

Intermediate Modulus 280-350 GPa 
The strongest of all carbons, it's found primarily on premium frames. Used In: High-strain areas like flexing seatstays, and in strength-critical regions, like the top tube, down tube, and parts of the head tube.

High Modulus 350-600 GPa
This carbon is on average 62 percent stiffer than standard modulus, but it's more brittle so engineers use it sparingly. A high-end bike might contain 25 percent high-modulus fibers. Used In: Areas that require extra lateral rigidity, like a down tube, seat tube, or chainstay.

Ultra High Modulus +600 GPa
The stiffest of carbon types, it is also brittle and very expensive. It's used selectively in top-of-the-line bikes, often with stronger intermediate-modulus carbon—even then, it comprises only about 15 percent of the material. Used In: Low-impact zones, like the center of the top tube.

Or maybe you satisfied with table?

All modulus of carbon fiber can come from the same basic strand, the difference is like an onion. The outermost layer of a carbon strand has lots of microscopic ridges and valleys, so by peeling off a layer, you get a more refined fiber filament, which is standard modulus. Peel off another, and you get intermediate. One more and you are at the densest, most refined type of carbon fiber, high modulus. The drawback with high modulus fiber is that although it is the lightest form of carbon fiber with the greatest stiffness characteristics, it is far more expensive and brittle than low modulus, can shatter very easily, resulting in a cracked carbon frame.

Most of the carbon fiber used in the cycling industry is standard modulus or intermediate modulus; on more expensive frames, higher grades do come into play. But that doesn’t sound very sexy, so there’s often a bit of grading on the curve as companies slip high-mod and UHM into their copy. Some companies are moving away from massaging the grading system altogether, simply creating their own carbon grading system with company-specific marketing terms like FACT or Advanced Grade.

Therefore, true high modulus carbon fiber is rarely used in bike frames, especially mass-produced frames made overseas. High-modulus fiber is expensive, so bike companies judiciously use relatively small amounts in key areas like the downtube, bottom bracket, and chainstays to resist pedaling forces and make the bike stiffer. But they’re placed in the mold along with standard- and intermediate-modulus and high-strength fiber to create the kind of durability, performance, and ride quality a good carbon frame has. Additionally, because of its brittle nature, high modulus carbon fiber usually needs to be reinforced with a tougher material like boron to resist damage upon impacts, making for an even more expensive bicycle frame.

Okay, now you know what "modulus" terms mean. It's important knowledge if you want to buy a carbon frame/parts but..carbon fiber its not only all about modulus, you still have to know about resin and layup. Stay tune and be a smart cyclist.


Ride On!

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Running Diary: Why I Run?

No, just need a new challange
Like cycling, actually running its bean a part of my life since childhood. I know running since the first time i know basketball game, in 6th grader.  I've active played basketball until of my high school life its over. In collage, i stopped doing anything workout (thing that i regretted). After finished my collage, i entered a work of world, dove in paper work bla, bla, bla until my weight rocketed to 80kg and my physical endurance sucks me out.

In 2010, i started cycling in search of fun an still doing that until now. But like you already know, the more you do, the more intense time and effort you must spend it. Behind that, i started to boring do the same workout day by day in 6 years. So, there's a two thing behind the reason, need a intense sport can do in short time, and second, need a new challenge.

I've started running in 2015. but cant do it more than 1 km without calf strain. Crap...that thing always stopped me doing that. Everything sucks till i bought calf compression sleeve in December 2015. With calf compression sleeve in legs, its helped me to reduce the pain in my calf when running. But the beginning i just can do run a few meter before run out of air and feel the pain in my entire body. Looks like my 6th year experience in cycling can't helped a lot in running.

My running problem lies in a poor running technique and bad habits, a heel strike. After spend countless times to read articles and litelatures, i'll slowly build a proper technique to run. Buying calf sleeve compression in December 2015 it a big game changer. That things help me eliminate calf strain so i have a more time and opportunity to run.

Change the habit and running technique its not easy and fast. Its slow and f##king hurts process! In June-July 2016 its the though times. I ran almost everyday with fully concentration to do proper technique and throw away the bad habit. Its only 1km but i felt very tired.

In August 2016, i started to reap what i sow. My running its further and faster than before. Now i can enjoy 3K run with 7:40 pace in mixed terrain without blow my lung and hurt my foot. The progress its good and make me happy. I have a goal to do 5K in this year and look like in right way to go.  

Run On!

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Live or Die, Roadbike Tech Today and Tomorrow

In a past recent years, we see a lot and revolutionary technologies in roadbike scene. Some now and some improvement. Bicycle industry today its still argue and develop a new parts to being a new "standard" in the future. But being a customer, i cant stand to not scratch my head when see the price and compatibility issues.Its interesting to see how the new invention and technologies make ours (cyclist) can ride faster, less effort and more comfortable on the road. Hopefully, the new tech can be a cheaper and have a good compatibility with common parts.

1. Disc Brake

Its true UCI banned disc brake tested in peloton after Ventoso accident, but i think it just a time when bicycle industry and cyclist push it to use disc brake in their roadbike. Why? 1. The big three (Shimano, Sram, Campagnolo) had been research and tested road disc brake in a last few years, don't you think they will let UCI blown away their research fund to be nothing? 2. Until now, full carbon rim had a braking issue. When rain comes, you better pray you can stop your bike. Dozens million Rupiah for squeeky and unreliable braking wheelset its not sound very good. Installed the disc brake and the braking issues gone. Mechanic or hydraulic? I think we batter have a choice like now.

2. Thru Axle

Its related with disc brake. Nowadays, every frame and hubs maker still argue the right size for thru axle. Some come with 12 mm and the others come with 10mm bla..bla..bla...Bicycle industry better have a good deal to release the new "standard" or i (we) better stand with quick release.

3. Electronic Groupset

This things can change your experience riding a roadbike. Can't shift your gear because you ran out of juice? Can happen with that :D Hahahahaha. Ok, Electronic groupset its a good thing, Specially in wireless side. They come in the right time. Lot of modern road frame now run with internal cable routing. Its a good look but pain in the ass when installed the cable. Have you see how messy the cables in TT/Tri bike? If you using a wireless groupset you don't fuss with internal routing cable  (shifter) anymore. 

4. Power Meter

Maybe power meter can be a standard in the future. Shimano starts that with their brand new Dura Ace crankset. That thing have a build in power meter!. Its just in time when the others brand following that.

5. Bigger Volume Tyre

Nowadays, 25c its being a new 23c. When roadies have a more desired to come in many places, bigger tyres will be a must have items.

6. CX+Gravel+Tour+Aero+Climb

Mixed that up and a new perfect roadbike will be born. When today the roadbike have a lot different category, i think that category will blend it each other in the future. pro cyclist can keep their specializing bike but people want a versatile bike, and that means a bike whose fast, lightweight, comfort and can loaded with a packs. Marin come with a new terms called "utilitour" with their four corner and i think that will be a basic for future roadbike. With carbon and vibration damping technology today, its not possible to have a stiff but comfy frame (and fork). Add some eyelett, space for bigger tyres (maybe like 32c?) fender and maybe you can see people use aerobike for touring :D (I know i will say the aero design doesnt useful when bag or pannier loaded but still we have aero advantages, even reduce by the bags . Sidewind? Well..just dont design that bike like a tri/TT bike)

7. A new BB "standard"

I miss the day when cyclist only use a conventional threaded BB. Their easy to install and maintenance (hail to HT 2 BB) compared with pressfit BB today. Like push and pull pressfit BB doesnt enough, you will face a compatibilty issue (i know there's many company produce BB adaptor, but they dont come cheap, and why we must spend more money to that??). In pursue of stiffness, every frame maker push their though to market. BB30, BB90/BB95, PF86/92, BB30, BB30A, PF30, BBright, BB386, and EVO T47 . Headache? Yes i'm too. Its confusing and sucks.... Conventional threaded still the best for me till manufacturer comes with one new "standard"

Ride On!

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Cycling News Selection 08/18/2016

Cube Analog 29 review

Cube has managed to pack a lot of value into the Analog despite still selling through local bike shops, but sketchy tyres and a cramped cockpit give you all the wrong signals when you tackle tougher terrain. A neat feature of the Analog is that Cube tries to match wheel size to rider size. That means that you get the choice of 650b wheels in the 14”, 16” and 18” frames, and 29” items on the 17", 19", 21" and 23" models, giving medium sized riders plenty of choice and larger or smaller riders better tuned handling. We opted for the big wheeler to make the most of their smooth rolling and speed boosting properties. Read more...

Rose X-Lite CWX 8800 review

German online retailer Rose has previous for producing well-specced, great value bikes – and it’s pulled out all the stops in the CWX 8800. This is an eye-catching machine that brings sculpted aero tube profiles to the world of disc brakes. You reckon that discs are only for gravel or endurance machines? Think again. The CWX 8800 doesn’t whisper aero road bike so much as scream it, from the horizontal time trial-style junction of top-tube and bladed seat-tube – complete with rear wheel-hugging cutaway – to the near-vertical seatpost. The huge down-tube and bulbous head-tube may look weighty, but aren’t. Read more...

Maxxis Aggressor 29x2.3 EXO tyre review 

The Maxxis Aggressor is a new tyre that’s not quite as burly as the company’s popular High Roller II, DHR II and DHF models, but has more bite than the Ardent. If you’re considering a new tread pattern for trail riding or enduro racing in dry conditions, the Aggressor is an excellent choice. I tested the Aggressor in the 29x2.3 size with the with a tubeless-ready, EXO casing. (Maxxis also offers the Aggressor in a 27.5x2.3 version.) Weight for my pair of test tyres was 905g. Read more...

Specialized Allez Comp review

The Specialized Allez has been around in one form or another since 1981. For 2016, the Allez Comp heads a smaller range, with the stated intention of providing a responsive and compliant ride that’s as at home on a 100-miler as it is in a criterium race. Equivalent frame geometry to Specialized’s race-proven bikes, allied to a stiff front end and the inherent sharpness of an alloy frame could help it live up to this promise. Its spec makes it ripe for upgrading as your riding improves, but is it too much of a compromise as it stands? Read more...

Spiuk Obuss

Aero helmets have never been the most accommodating of shells to wear while on the road. In the pursuit of speed, they can be as uncomfortable to wear as ungainly to look at. However, Spiuk has gone to a lot of effort to make the Obuss more than just a cool-looking piece of kit. Complete with air-funnelling creases over the top of the crown and an accompanying black, white and fluoro-green colour scheme, it certainly turns heads, in a good way (it's also available in a white, red and black scheme too). I can't vouch for the science without a wind tunnel, but it does seem to resist and deflect gusts of wind, which suggests it handles fast moving air well. Read more...

Six things which affect your comfort in the saddle 

The contact points with the bike are vital to get right in order to maximise comfort and performance on the bike. The saddle, along with the handlebar and pedals, is one of the three contact points and arguably the most important because you spend the vast majority of your riding time sat on it. As a result, saddle discomfort is a serious issue because it can not only reduce your enjoyment of riding your bike, but could also potentially cause injury, too. If you struggle with pain in the saddle area, you certainly aren’t the first and won’t be the last. Here are six potential causes – sometimes learned through painful experience – and how to remedy them. Read more....

Review: Salsa Pony Rustler

Salsa Cycles is not one to shy away from big tires, so it is only natural to see another one of its bikes with a bit of extra rubber show up at our door for review. This time around it’s the Pony Rustler, Salsa’s 27plus rig sired from the esteemed line of the Horsethief. In fact the two bikes are so similar, they might be better classified as twins. I think the Pony Rustler just decided to wear different shoes and jacket to make sure we didn’t mistake one for the other. And where did that name come from? Jokingly, Pete Koski, the product design engineer for the Pony Rustler, told me “It rhymes with Horsethief.” I’m kind of glad Pete designs bikes and doesn’t write poetry (that I know of). Read more...

The evolution of the specialized enduro

Evolution is not what you’d call “snappy”. About 5.8 million years ago our ancestral line split off from that of the great apes. While there was much hooting, lurching about on hind legs and awkward high-fiving at the time, things quickly stalled out. For three million years. It took three thousand friggin' millennia for Homo Habilis to stumble upon a rock and think, “Hell, I bet I could use this thing to smack my neighbor and steal his pile of ants.” Three million years to invent the handle-less hammer. So, yeah, evolution—it’s not so quick on the gas. The exception to this rule? The modern mountain bike. Read more...


Ride On!

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Cycling News Selection 08/17/2016

Review: Clement LCV clincher road tires offer long term performance 

Clement tires opened its doors for business way back in the 19th century, circa 1878. Founded by Gustave Adophe ClĂ©ment-Bayard, the company first manufactured high quality bicycles before moving onto the production of tires some ten years later. The company would later expand into the manufacture and development of aircraft, automobiles, motorcycles and dirigibles – quite a diverse portfolio! Read more...

Review: AbsoluteBlack Premium oval road bike chainrings

AbsoluteBlack has been making intricately machined oval chainrings for some time, and they’re beautiful. They’re also expensive, so this past spring, they came out with the Winter set for road. Winter being another way of saying “off season”, or “training” rings since they’re a bit heavier and lose the machining on the outer face of the large chainring. That makes them more affordable, but they don’t have the chiseled look of their Premium Oval chainrings, tested here. The shaping isn’t just cosmetic or to save weight, it also boosts strength and stiffness, aided by their 5mm thickness. Which works, these are incredibly stiff. They also happen to shift smoothly and quickly, and even with a moderate ovalization, slot into modern drivetrains with minimal or no issues… Read more...

Rivelo Men's Rowsley Gilet

Rivelo designs its clothing here in the UK and is keen to point out the amount of testing that goes on in our rather inclement country too. (Although when it comes to manufacturing, Rivelo, like many others, looks to China – in the case of this gilet, anyway.) The quality is very good too. At first glance there doesn't seem anything overly flashy with the 100% polyester construction, but it's the attention to all the little details that makes the Rowsley so complete. Read more...

Blackburn Local Rear Pannier 

The Local pannier addresses two of my major gripes with removable panniers – how to get them on and off multiple bikes quickly, and then how to carry them off the bike when you don't want to leave them attached. Blackburn claims that the Local is 'compatible with all standard racks'. That would be racks of tubing not more than 10.5mm then. The Local panniers wouldn't fit the 13mm tubing on my beloved bright orange (it's Dutch, yeah?) Workcycles FR8, the Rolls Royce/Volvo estate of utility bikes. Which was a pity as the colour match was perfect and looks count for a lot. Read more...

Northwave Sonic 2 SRS 

What Northwave calls its NRG Air Carbon Reinforced soles are reasonably stiff, made from 'a new blend of nylon reinforced with fibreglass and enriched with carbon'. You can detect a little flex during flat-out sprinting and out-of-the-saddle climbing but not while you're seated. The sole features five gauze-covered vents that are positioned under the toes, in the mid foot and at the heel, and you can definitely feel the cooling effect on your feet as you ride. Read more...

1×12 Drivetrain: SRAM Eagle XX1 Test Ride Review 

If you haven’t heard of SRAM’s new 1×12 Eagle drivetrain yet, you’ve probably been living in a van, down by the river, with no cell reception. Not that there’s anything wrong with living in a van down by the river and just riding your bike every day, but if you want to catch up on the hubbub, read this article. I recently had my first chance to ride SRAM Eagle and to form some opinions about this new drivetrain. Read on for my take. XX1 Eagle comes stock with the visually-impressive gold-colored 10-50 12-speed cassette. I can guarantee you that you won’t understand how big a 50-tooth cog is until you see one in person–it’s absolutely massive! Seriously, go to your local shop with the blingiest bikes and check it out–it’s astounding. Read more...

Gore One Gore-Tex Active Bike Jacket review

Less is definitely more with the new Gore One breathable waterproof jacket. While the performance and price are high, the weight and size are tiny with the jacket packing down into its own pocket that’s about the size of a fist. A quick shake of the jacket removes most all water so you can easily tuck it into your still-dry
jersey pocket.

How to unstick stuck bike parts

We’ve all had it happen. You go to remove your pedals, cranks or perhaps seatpost and the part just won’t budge. A few will eventually find success after much swearing, some resort to assistance from the local shop, while others persevere until something goes terribly wrong. Perhaps the items have become corroded, the last mechanic got a little too generous with the Loctite – or maybe it was over tightened somewhere along the way. Read more...


Ride On!

Monday, 15 August 2016

Cycling News Selection 8/16/2016

Lazer Tonic road helmet review

The Lazer Tonic is an excellent budget road helmet that looks and feels like a much more expensive lid. At 230g for a Medium, it weighs the same as helmets more than twice as expensive, such as the Specialized S-Works Prevail or the Bontrager Velocis. Best bike helmets: a buyer's guide to help you find what's right for you Best road cycling helmets: 8 of our top picks Internal channeling on the Tonic keeps air moving across the head, and probably reduces the weight a little, too. Ventilation is very good for a helmet at this price point — not as airy as something like the Prevail but much better than helmets in its class. Read more...

Giordana Sahara bib shorts review

Giordana's Sahara bib shorts are built for, you guessed it, hot weather riding. With purposeful breathability and focused compression, they're also aimed at uphill specialists whose goal is to minimize weight. Read more...

POC Tectal helmet review

The new Tectal blends design elements from POC’s Octal road helmet with the company’s first half-shell mountain bike helmet, the Trabec While many riders enjoyed the Trabec, I was not one of them. I found the ventilation poor and I never got along with the non-adjustable visor; it always seemed to be in the way. POC claims the Tectal is nearly as well vented as the road-going Octal. There are nine vents across the forehead, three over the crown, and five exhaust vents at the rear. My time on the trail confirms POC's claims. Air flows easily through the helmet, making it one of the better vented trail helmets I’ve tested. Read more...

5 simple steps to cycling saddle comfort

What’s the one biggest factor when it comes to cycling comfort for most riders? The saddle. When your set-up works correctly, you don’t even notice it. When it doesn’t it can be one of the most uncomfortable and downright traumatic things you’ve ever experienced. Getting saddle comfort right can mean the difference between loving and hating cycling. Read more...

Giant Defy Advanced SL0 review

The Defy Advanced SL chassis is at the top of an extensive line-up, ranging from a lightweight, lightly priced aluminium machine to three levels of carbon models. At a claimed 730g (M), the SL is the lightest by some margin, partly due to the integrated seatpost. The post has advantages in that the carbon can be manipulated to save weight over a clamped post and engineered to offer plenty of flex — there is more uninterrupted tube to play with. Read more...

12 bike maintenance misconceptions that could cost you time and money 

Here's a list of common maintenance misconceptions that I see and hear riders — and some mechanics — repeating all the time. While none of these are a cycle crime on a par with wearing socks with SPD sandals, they are easy enough to stop doing (unless, of course you disagree with the points below). Read more...

Genesis Equilibrium Disc 10 review

Genesis is up-front about the Equilibrium Disc 10’s primary functions – we’re not looking at a race rocket but at an easy-going ride that echoes the brand’s ever-popular steel-framed Equilibrium, only with the addition of disc brakes. Or, as Genesis puts it, ‘It’s an ideal road disc bike for those who favour comfort, stability and fun over KOM leaderboards.’ But even with modern components fitted, how will a steel-framed bike fare against similarly priced aluminium and carbon bikes? Only one way to find out…Read more...

Tech Talk: Are your bike tires too wide for your rims? Here’s how to get it right

With the explosion of Boost, Plus bikes, Mid Fat and other portly new rim and tire sizes for everything from road to cyclocross to gravel to mountain bikes, it’s a wonder there isn’t more confusion as to what will actually work together. And by “work together”, we don’t just mean whether or not it’ll mount. We wanted to know what the compatibility limitations are for optimum performance and, more importantly, safety. If we’ve learned one thing from Mavic’s presentations over the years, it’s that tire and rim sizes really and truly are designed to work in tandem. Step outside the guidelines and you risk poor performance, component damage, or even a total blowout. And it’s not just Mavic. Read more...


Ride On!

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Understanding Your Bicycle Frame Material

Which Material Is Right for You? It depends. Many factors—your style of riding, your weight, your sense of adventure—all play a role in your choice of material. The following paragraphs explain the different types of material commonly used, pros and cons, and riding characteristic. I hope you can choose which materials suitable with yourself after read this article. A few bikes out there are made of exotic materials (like a bamboo), but that's another discussion entirely. 

Carbon (High-Tensile) Steel and Chromoly (Chrome Molybdenum)

Steel is real! Steel is the most commonly used material in bike frames, it  has been used by frame builders for over a century. Steel is durable, totally resistant to fatigue stress (when used for standard bike riding anyway) and easily repaired. Carbon or high-tensile steel is a good, strong, long-lasting steel, but it isn't as light as its more high-tech brother, the steel known as chromoly. All steels have the same inherent stiffness and weight, regardless of strength - Reynolds 853 is no stiffer than 1010 (mild steel). Adding a tiny bit of chromium and molybdenum makes it strong enough to “butt” or thin down in the middle, thus making it lighter. This alloy is usually referred to as chromoly.

Most quality steel frames use a variation of chromoly. This principle of engineering frames to use less of a stronger, stiffer material is true for all frame materials. The materials themselves are not lighter; the way they are used allows the builder to use less material to build a stronger frame. At one time nearly all high quality frames were steel chromoly. The recent development of very high strength “air-hardened” steels (like Reynolds 853 or True-Temper’s OX-Platinum that gain rather than lose strength as they cool from welding) has made for frames that have a strength-to-weight ratio equal to titanium frames. A popular quality steel for bicycle frames is American SAE 4130 steel, better known as "chrome molybdenum," and referred to as "chromoly" or "chrome-moly." And, there are plenty of other impressive alloys offered by tubing suppliers such as Columbus, Reynolds, Tange and True Temper.

The strength of any type of steel allows builders to engineer a certain amount of flex by using thinner tubes which translates into what riders call a “lively” feel or springiness, something builders using aluminum can’t do because when aluminum flexes it fatigues the metal, which ultimately can lead to failure. Steel frames are also relatively easy and cheap to repair, and the technology has been around for a long time.

Which steel is best? There are many different names and numbers you'll see thrown around - Columbus, Reynolds 531, 725, 853, Cromo 4130, and so on. The differences are quite technical, but they usually come down to relative strength, hardness, and the properties of the metal when it is heated (during the welding process). The thing is, metal usually gets weaker when it's heated up, which is not a good thing around the joints (where welding and brazing applies heat). But some steels are made to deal with this - for example, Reynolds 853 tubing is "air hardening", which means basically that 853 is very well suited to TIG welding, since it actually gets stronger at the weld points. One downside, however, of 853 is that it's very hard, which means it is also harder to work the metal. This is why most beginner framebuilders will use a softer steel, like 4130, which is commonly used in the aerospace industry.

Pros and Cons
+ Cheap raw materials and manufacturing cost. Ride quality and comfort of high quality steel is second to none. Durable and impact resistant. Will bend rather than snapping suddenly. Relatively easy and cheap to repair damage.

- Is probably the heaviest of the four main materials. If made too light or of disputable quality then the frame can be excessively flexible. Steel tubing will be round so no aero profiling. Can rust and may need occasional re-sprays.

Riding characteristics
Frames built of these materials are famous for their combination of responsiveness and comfort. Steel is the standard that other materials are compared to. It's got a lively, comfortable ride that most customers prefer.


Having come a long way from the oversized tubes of old, aluminum is now less expensive and very widely used on today's bikes. Aluminium is lighter than steel (when comparing an equally sized tube), but also weaker and is susceptible to fatigue stress and failure over time. With proper design it can give a solid ride for climbing, or lively handling in tight situations.  Aluminum introduced as a material for bicycle frames about 30 years ago, aluminum is now the most common material. It is less dense than steel, so it results in lighter frames. Because of its decreased density, it requires larger tube diameters to achieve enough strength for a bike frame.

Aluminum doesn’t oxidize like steel (read: rust). Their lateral stiffness gives aluminum frames a quick feeling because the transfer of pedaling force is so immediate, but some complain that the same stiffness translates into a lack of vertical compliance, making for an unforgiving, harsh ride. This effect is ameliorated to some degree by the now-common use of carbon fiber forks and suspension to soak up road shock.

An aluminum frame can be made stiffer and lighter than steel because it is not nearly as dense. This is done by increasing a tube’s diameter while maintaining the wall thickness, making a tube that is eight times as stiff, but only twice the weight. This “oversizing” of tubing runs the risk of a “beer can” effect if the tube walls are thinned too much. Aluminum’s affordable lightness and stiffness make it the first choice these days for bikes with any kind of suspension.

And, like steel, as you spend more, you get higher quality tubing and better construction. The buzz about aluminum is that is has a more jarring ride than the other materials. But, while this used to be the case in its early years, it's not a problem today thanks to new aluminum alloys, tubing enhancements and improved construction techniques. These allow the frames to absorb shock better than ever while still offering the wonderfully lively ride that makes aluminum all the rage today.

This magic ride is attributed to aluminum being the lightest frame material -- even lighter than carbon and titanium. It makes aluminum frames great choices for racing and time trialing. And, unlike steel, aluminum won't rust; another advantage. There are various types of aluminum tubing in use by manufacturers. Some common types are 6061 and 7005, numbers that refer to the alloys in the aluminum such as magnesium, silicon and zinc (pure aluminum isn't strong enough for bike use). And, there are some new superlight tubesets such as Easton Scandium.

Pros and Cons
+ Can be super light-weight. Fairly cheap manufacturing costs and easy to mass produce. Generally stiff offering excellent power transfer. Pretty tough. Modern tube shaping techniques such as hydroforming can fine-tune strength and ride feel.

- The stiffness and rigidity can result in an overly harsh ride. This is why you’ll often find a carbon fork and seat stays on a top end aluminium frame. Can corrode and can react adversely with carbon fibre components. It will weaken over time. Hard to repair.

Ride Characteristics
For the most part, oversized aluminum frames are very stiff and unforgiving. You'll get good transfer of power through the cranks to the wheel, but suffice to say that the 'thud' sound you hear if you flick the frame with your finger nail, is the same 'thud' sound you'll feel when riding on pavement or bumps. You'll feel the road transferred to your 'contact points' through a very unforgiving frame. Tight corners on bumpy roads will require more slowing down for control purposes as the bike can 'bounce' or 'rattle' out of the groove if your not careful. Not to characterize all modern aluminum bikes the same though, Scandium aluminum from Easton claims to ride more like a steel frame. 


Lighter than steel but just as strong, this more-expensive metal is found on high-end road or cross-country mountain bikes. It flexes so well while maintaining its shape that some very high-end bikes use the metal itself as a shock absorber. Many cyclists and experts feel that it combines the best characteristics of all the other frame materials. It rivals aluminum in weight, is as comfortable as steel and it has a sprightly ride and electric handling that many riders swear by.  Titanium has an excellent balance of properties for frame building, combining durability with lower weight. Titanium alloys are half as stiff as steel, but also half as dense. The strongest titanium alloys are comparable to the strongest steels.

Stiff titanium frames need larger-diameter tubes than comparable steel frames, but not as big as aluminum. Titanium is very corrosion resistant, and very light frames can be made stiff enough and strong enough for bigger riders. Most Ti frames are the 3Al/2.5V alloy (3% aluminum/2.5% vanadium), with the more difficult to use, 6Al/4V (6% aluminum/4% vanadium) falling out of favor with most frame builders. 6Al/4V is more expensive, lighter, harder to machine and stronger.

As an element, titanium is one of the most plentiful elements in the world. But titanium frames are expensive not only because of the material costs, but because Titanium is hard on metalworking tools, requires expensive titanium welding rod and must be joined carefully in a controlled environment.

Pros and Cons
+ Very high strength to weight ratio. Rustproof and bombproof. Doesn’t even require painting or lacquering. Can rival steel in terms of ride quality. High resistance to metal fatigue.

- High price raw materials and extremely labour intensive and skilled frame building process makes for a hefty price tag. Bigger or more powerful riders might find the really lightweight frames a bit too flexible. Also, some people find titanium prone to “twitchiness” and “speed wobbles” when descending. Hard to repair.

Riding characteristics
If the frame is built heavy enough for the rider, then the riding characteristics are fantastic. Ti frames ride smooth and responsive and stable. The frames feel "alive," as if each pedal stroke gets a boost from an inherent springiness in the frame. 

Carbon Fiber

Carbon fiber is a relatively new material and unique because it's not a metal material. Is made up of non-metallic graphite fiber cloth that is layered together with high strength epoxy resin to form a matrix. Originally used in the aerospace industry, it can have a high strength to weight ratio, but it is quite expensive. Individual fibers of carbon are tremendously strong and stiff, but they are useless unless arranged in a strong pattern, and held together with a strong “glue” (usually epoxy).

Unlike metals, in which strength and stiffness properties are nearly the same in all directions, carbon fiber composites can be tuned to orient the strength where it’s needed (for instance, stiff laterally and compliant vertically). This makes carbon fiber the preferred material of choice for unconventional frames and shapes, as it can be molded and tuned more than any metal. So why aren't all bikes made out of carbon fiber? It tends to be brittle. The fact that metal can bend and regain its shape is what makes it last. Because of this, carbon fiber bikes are built even stronger than needed.

Like titanium, because construction is somewhat complicated and because carbon fabric and resins are costly, carbon frames are on the high end of the cost spectrum. To describe these frames manufacturers use terms such as "high modulus" and "void free," which tells you that it's high-quality carbon fiber material and stellar construction. Sometimes, these designations appear on frame "tubing" decals.

Carbon fiber will not corrode, but it does require greater care than bikes made from metal and may not be as durable long term. A deep scratch or hard knock can damage the integrity of the structure creating the danger of a major failure.

Pros and Cons
+ Very high strength to weight ratio, giving rise to the lightest bike frames available. Excellent resistance to fatigue and totally corrosion resistant. Strength, stiffness and ride characteristics are controllable during the manufacturing process to give exactly what is required for the requirements of the riding and rider. Can be moulded into any shape making highly aerodynamic designs possible.

- Expensive raw material. Resistance to accidental knocks and the effect of apparently minor scratches and dings on structural integrity can be a concern. Can break suddenly (if weakened) without warning. Particularly prone to those of us who can be over zealous with an allen key. Hard to repair. Quality of lay-up can vary massively.

Riding Characteristic
Maybe carbon frame can have all riding characteristic from all metal material above. It can be a very stiff but a forgiving too. Right words to describe it is a "Tailor made" frame for (almost) all you want from bicycle frame. 

Every material had a pro, cons and unique riding characteristic. Nowadays, frame builder not only use a one material to build a frame, sometimes they mixed up different material in one frame, like titanium lugs with carbon tubing or aluminium frame with carbon seat stay etc. Now you had a knowledge to determine which one frame suit for you. Get out there and buy the damn frame.


Ride On!

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Climbing Tips For Mortal Cyclist

Climbing its the parts in ride..and you can say in life too. Like everybody already knows, climbing its never easy. It needs strength, strategy and patient to conquered it. I think majority of people will say climbing its sucks, yes.. im in too but... lucky (poor) me, terrain in my place was consist a lot of short climb! I can't turn around to look another route. So i must faced it every time i rode...huuuuuuuu.

Since climbing (short) always being part of my ride, it insist me to learn how to pass it with minimum fuss. Don't get me wrong, i'm still favorited a flat or descent but i really have to dealt and peace with climb. In web, you can googling lot of tips for climbing but in this article, i will share my experience to deal with it.

1. Never see the top the beginning i always see the top of the hill when climbed. In a short climb that's ok, but in a long climb err....i felt wavy legs, breathe become harder and harder and hufff.......i lost my power and confidence. I wanna get to the top fast but, bombing+70kg body weight+mid end bike doesn't end well. So after that, i tried look only my front tyre when faced a long climb. Why? Because i don't need to see the top of the hill to pass the climb. I don't need to rush and i just need concentrate to powered my legs push the pedal one by one. Looking the top will distract my concentration and push me to rush to the top.

2. Speed is not the issue
Like lot of cycling tips said, you need a steady cadence when facing a longggg steepppp climb. For me, its turn to speed is not the issue when climbing. I'm just a mortal, so its more important to me can get to the top than break my personal record or get a KOM. No need to rush. Patient. Enjoy hearing your heartbeat and breathe. 

I dont wanna be the walk guy
3. Keep seated
I can't resist to stand up pedalling when climbed (and i'm sure you too) but its a bad habit. i'll only get a short brute booster before my fuel decrease to E..a big E (mean empty). Keep seated and minimize my body wave can save a precious fuel.

4. One Two, One Two
Keep your rhythm. In your breathe and cadence. Its more efficient than unsteady move (speed). Left right, left, right and so on. Channeling and syncronized your breathe and cadence to get a good rhythm. 

5. Bark
Sometimes i see myself and others shout some word in the middle of hard climb. Actually its a expression and stress relief in a hard situation. It is ok to do that right? Hmm..i think you better save your energy to pedalling than shouting out loud. Your face its enough to express your feeling, dont need to tell anyone you frustrated. 

Climb? Calm down...lets face it

Ok, that's my tips to get over the top. Remember, this is a tips from and for a mortal cyclist. Maybe it doesn't work for the KOM hunters. Lets ride it on and faced climb like a man.

Ride On!