Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

What is the speed advantage of a modern steel bike?

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

What is the speed advantage of a modern steel bike?

Old 08-07-19, 10:36 AM
  #26  
bruce19
Senior Member
 
bruce19's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Lebanon (Liberty Hill), CT
Posts: 7,442

Bikes: CAAD 12, MASI Gran Criterium S, Colnago World Cup CX & Guru steel

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1287 Post(s)
Liked 645 Times in 385 Posts
I will guarantee you that my mid-80's MAZA (Not MASI) Prestige TSX frame was heavier than my current Guru Sidero. That counts for something when climbing. Whether it's significant enough to cause a recreational rider to spent a bunch of money is up to you.
bruce19 is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 10:57 AM
  #27  
indyfabz
Senior Member
 
indyfabz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 28,039
Mentioned: 196 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12082 Post(s)
Liked 4,007 Times in 2,107 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
Hah. Maybe it's engine.
Can't resist. It is all about the Engin...


indyfabz is online now  
Likes For indyfabz:
Old 08-07-19, 11:09 AM
  #28  
ThermionicScott 
7-speed cultist
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 20,070

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)

Mentioned: 87 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2788 Post(s)
Liked 716 Times in 503 Posts
@Ironfish653's post made me think a little: if you are not using the full range of your 11-28 cassette, you could install a tighter one so that you are closer to optimal gearing most of the time. I, for example, have no use for a 50/11 top gear. Just switching to a 12-28 would bring the top three gears down and into the range where I do my riding. (In fact, a 13-28 would be even more to my liking. )
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 11:12 AM
  #29  
TiHabanero
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 3,202
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1115 Post(s)
Liked 409 Times in 225 Posts
Dugla, I just went through this at the start of summer. I ride a frame that I built in 2001 from Reynolds 531. Had friction 5, 6 and 7 speed on it all this time and was happy with it, but now need lower gearing. I had to rebuild the rear end due to hitting it with the car so I built it with 135mm spacing for reasons other than gear choices. Installed my first ever indexed shifting in the form of Record brifters with Chorus derailleurs, but kept the Superbe Pro crank on it. The rear gears are Shimano 11-32, and there is not a doubt in my mind that I am able to climb faster and seated more often. Top speed is the same as always, but I can get up the hills better because I have lower gear ratios to work with.

In addition to this, at the end of hard rides like I did this morning I am fresher, dead, but not beat up.

One thing to note, my friend Paul rides an old Fuji Roubaix aluminum frame with beat up 105 on it and can stick with anyone any time. He is an old cuss, too. Work on your motor and get more appropriate gearing, and just maybe you will feel the speed.

The frame is unlikely to help. Aero tubing and design will only make a real difference at higher speeds and over a long distance.
TiHabanero is offline  
Likes For TiHabanero:
Old 08-07-19, 11:16 AM
  #30  
MattTheHat 
Senior Member
 
MattTheHat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Allen, TX
Posts: 1,714

Bikes: 2020 S-Works Creo SL, 2020 Specialized Roubaix Expert

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 562 Post(s)
Liked 1,865 Times in 672 Posts
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Alas, that's what we're trying to tell you.

If getting a new bike or upgrading the old one inspires you to upgrade the engine, then it could be worth it, but it's not going to be a quick fix to move you up a couple MPH.
I was going to say much the same. New go fast goodies might make you want to ride more.

-Matt
MattTheHat is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 11:29 AM
  #31  
Caliper
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Michigan
Posts: 950

Bikes: Many

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 363 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 28 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
I am fit and - due to limited time - ride hills for about an hour every other day during the week. On weekends I do a longer (32mi.) ride. I occasionally try riding with a local group ride but I am routinely dropped early in the ride. Average pace is about 17mph. It drives me nuts! The other riders are not exactly studs and do not look super fit. What I do notice is everyone is on a modern bike. Carbon mostly. Some titanium. Some steel.

You refer to 32 miles as a "longer" ride, what is your pace on this ride? How long is this training ride you are joining? Around here, our weekday group rides are in the 30-40 mile range. Many people I know routinely go double that on the weekends.


Honestly, 17mph doesn't sound like a blistering pace for a group ride on pavement unless you are in a very hilly area. It sounds like your current training is 2.5hr during the week + 32 miles on the weekend? While you may be fit in a general sense, it is possible that the ride you are joining is made up of people more fit than you are and you could benefit from more training. Or, consider finding a different group ride that holds a slightly lower pace if you are happy with your current training volume.
Caliper is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 11:39 AM
  #32  
Kedosto
Ambulophobic
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: San Leandro, CA
Posts: 1,248
Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 492 Post(s)
Liked 203 Times in 121 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
Hah. Maybe it's engine.

It's never the engine. It's always the bike. I could be a gold medaling, TdF superstar, mega-millionaire if only I had a better bike. Heck, I'd even be more handsome and charming too.


-Kedosto
"nice personality"
Kedosto is offline  
Likes For Kedosto:
Old 08-07-19, 11:46 AM
  #33  
TimothyH
- Soli Deo Gloria -
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Northwest Georgia
Posts: 14,783

Bikes: 2018 Rodriguez Custom Fixed Gear, 2017 Niner RLT 9 RDO, 2015 Bianchi Pista, 2002 Fuji Robaix

Mentioned: 235 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6833 Post(s)
Liked 685 Times in 433 Posts
Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
Dugla, I just went through this at the start of summer. I ride a frame that I built in 2001 from Reynolds 531. Had friction 5, 6 and 7 speed on it all this time and was happy with it, but now need lower gearing. I had to rebuild the rear end due to hitting it with the car so I built it with 135mm spacing for reasons other than gear choices. Installed my first ever indexed shifting in the form of Record brifters with Chorus derailleurs, but kept the Superbe Pro crank on it. The rear gears are Shimano 11-32, and there is not a doubt in my mind that I am able to climb faster and seated more often. Top speed is the same as always, but I can get up the hills better because I have lower gear ratios to work with.

In addition to this, at the end of hard rides like I did this morning I am fresher, dead, but not beat up.

One thing to note, my friend Paul rides an old Fuji Roubaix aluminum frame with beat up 105 on it and can stick with anyone any time. He is an old cuss, too. Work on your motor and get more appropriate gearing, and just maybe you will feel the speed.

The frame is unlikely to help. Aero tubing and design will only make a real difference at higher speeds and over a long distance.
This is a lucid and well thought out post.


-Tim-
TimothyH is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 01:16 PM
  #34  
JohnDThompson 
Old fart
 
JohnDThompson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Appleton WI
Posts: 21,963

Bikes: Several, mostly not name brands.

Mentioned: 127 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2348 Post(s)
Liked 777 Times in 516 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
Hi,

I am trying to get a definitive, fact based answer to the question: what makes a modern steel frame road bike faster than my vintage - 20 years old - custom steel frame?
The rider.

/thread
JohnDThompson is offline  
Likes For JohnDThompson:
Old 08-07-19, 01:22 PM
  #35  
Kovkov
Senior Member
 
Kovkov's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 367

Bikes: 1957 Alpa Special, 1963 Condor Delta, 1967 Tigra Sprint, 1977 Oltenia, 1987 Mondia, 1965 Staco de luxe, 1969 Amberg

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 110 Post(s)
Liked 64 Times in 34 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
Hi,

I am trying to get a definitive, fact based answer to the question: what makes a modern steel frame road bike faster than my vintage - 20 years old - custom steel frame?
I would say it‘s not „what“ but „who“. Someone who spins the same gear ratio with a faster cadence.
Kovkov is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 01:45 PM
  #36  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 2,415
Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1541 Post(s)
Liked 1,757 Times in 827 Posts
Originally Posted by dugla View Post
I like what I'm hearing. My Fuso is all set for a modern groupset as the spacing is wide enough for a 10/11 speed cassette.
Put on a new Shimano 11 speed groupset -- 105 level is very good, Ultegra is even better. I know you just bought a new rear wheel, so add a new front wheel -- or better yet, buy a nice new lightweight wheelset. Replace a few other key components -- go for best bang for buck by removing relatively heavy components if you can replace them with newer lighter parts at reasonable cost.

Most important part is to ride more, perhaps do some interval training. That will make the biggest difference in allowing you to keep up on the group ride.
Koyote is offline  
Likes For Koyote:
Old 08-07-19, 01:58 PM
  #37  
rosefarts
With a mighty wind
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,489
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 579 Post(s)
Liked 285 Times in 163 Posts
If your bike has 130mm spacing and you don't feel the need to get disc brakes, you're probably fine just upgrading components.

I ride 2 steel bikes, both "modern" but also 20ish years old.

The road bike is set up with 10speed Campy Chorus that I upgraded cranks to a carbon compact UT. I switched to a carbon fork for fit issues too. On the nice wheels, I'm just at 17.5 lbs. Add a pound for my Open Pro workhorses. I am an ok climber, I drop more people than I get dropped by. This early aught bike rides modern and fast and certainly doesn't slow me down. It has never been the reason I've crushed souls or been crushed.

The gravel bike is a different story. It's a cross bike that takes wider tires. It's a bit of a Frankenstein build. It works super well but it has toe rub. For gravel, I'd prefer disc brakes. If I damage my tank of a fork, there isn't anything with a 1" steerer tube to replace it with. If I were to do that build again, I'd probably go a lot more modern.
rosefarts is offline  
Likes For rosefarts:
Old 08-07-19, 02:48 PM
  #38  
TimothyH
- Soli Deo Gloria -
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Northwest Georgia
Posts: 14,783

Bikes: 2018 Rodriguez Custom Fixed Gear, 2017 Niner RLT 9 RDO, 2015 Bianchi Pista, 2002 Fuji Robaix

Mentioned: 235 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6833 Post(s)
Liked 685 Times in 433 Posts
I'm going to put this out there...

Modern Steel Road Bike Appreciation Thread

IIRC the thread got very contentious, especially regarding the semantics of the word "Modern", but it does contain some very nice steel bikes.


-Tim-
TimothyH is offline  
Likes For TimothyH:
Old 08-07-19, 07:24 PM
  #39  
Homebrew01
Super Moderator
 
Homebrew01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Ffld Cnty Connecticut
Posts: 21,585

Bikes: Old Steelies I made, Old Cannondales

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1023 Post(s)
Liked 376 Times in 273 Posts
I'm still riding the steel frame I built around 1982. It's a Franken-bike now, with Campy Centaur 10 speed, mixed with some original bits.

Just grunt a bit when spreading the dropouts to insert a 130 mm rear wheel.
__________________
Bikes: Old steel race bikes, old Cannondale race bikes, less old Cannondale race bike, crappy old mtn bike.

FYI: https://www.bikeforums.net/forum-sugg...ad-please.html
Homebrew01 is offline  
Old 08-07-19, 07:56 PM
  #40  
02Giant 
Home School Valedictorian
 
02Giant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Iowa
Posts: 2,953

Bikes: 13 Orbea Orca 02 Giant Cypress 88 Mongoose ATB 79 frame-built to 80 spec. Schwinn Traveller

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1193 Post(s)
Liked 264 Times in 192 Posts
Spend some $$ on that old frame. A new, lighter wheelset. New tires. Shimano 105 11spd. Then ride the snot out of it.
__________________
Stop The Squeal

I ain't broke and I ain't hungry but I'm close enough to care
tp





02Giant is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 12:22 AM
  #41  
ironwood
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Boston area
Posts: 1,903

Bikes: 1984 Bridgestone 400 1985Univega nouevo sport 650b conversion 1993b'stone RBT 1985 Schwinn Tempo

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 472 Post(s)
Liked 68 Times in 46 Posts
Unfortunately, one of the best modern steel tubing, True Temper XO Platinum, is no longer available. Some of the Japanese makers have moved production to Taiwan. Maybe someone on the Framebuilding forum would know what is the best modern steel. A lot of them miss XO Platinum.
ironwood is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 03:32 AM
  #42  
Rollfast
What happened?
 
Rollfast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Around here somewhere
Posts: 8,029

Bikes: 3 Rollfasts, 3 Schwinns, a Shelby and a Higgins Flightliner in a pear tree!

Mentioned: 57 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1834 Post(s)
Liked 283 Times in 247 Posts
Ain't nothin' fast if you ain't fast.

I'm H.R Huffnpuff myself. The ride is fine though.
__________________
I don't know nothing, and I memorized it in school and got this here paper I'm proud of to show it.
Rollfast is offline  
Likes For Rollfast:
Old 08-08-19, 04:39 AM
  #43  
bruce19
Senior Member
 
bruce19's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Lebanon (Liberty Hill), CT
Posts: 7,442

Bikes: CAAD 12, MASI Gran Criterium S, Colnago World Cup CX & Guru steel

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1287 Post(s)
Liked 645 Times in 385 Posts
Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Can't resist. It is all about the Engin...


I always seeing this bike. Thanks.
bruce19 is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 04:41 AM
  #44  
bruce19
Senior Member
 
bruce19's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Lebanon (Liberty Hill), CT
Posts: 7,442

Bikes: CAAD 12, MASI Gran Criterium S, Colnago World Cup CX & Guru steel

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1287 Post(s)
Liked 645 Times in 385 Posts
Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
Unfortunately, one of the best modern steel tubing, True Temper XO Platinum, is no longer available. Some of the Japanese makers have moved production to Taiwan. Maybe someone on the Framebuilding forum would know what is the best modern steel. A lot of them miss XO Platinum.
My Guru is Columbus Spirit. I'd love to know what frame builders think of the material. I love my Guru.
bruce19 is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 06:50 AM
  #45  
dugla
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 18 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Ok,

Thanks for the tons of useful input. Very cool.

If I try and distill responses down I think I have a punch list.

First, more context:
- My Fuso is at130mm and this was key to some of the changes I made. I had the local shop build me a wheel. Hub: Shimano 105 5800 36 hole 11-Speed rear hub. Cassette: Shimano 7-Speed 11/28. Rim: Mavic Open Sport 700c. So out with the old freewheel in with the cassette/freehub basically.

My todo list:
- upgrade to the latest Shimano 105 11-speed groupset
- (maybe) replace my front wheel with some Mavic coolness
- more hills

My goals are rather modest: ride comfortably at 17-18mph in the local group ride which is 36 miles-ish. A key aspect of this is "solving" riding on the rolling hills here in Mass. (Lexington/Concord/etc.). This is where the 11-speeds should pay dividends. I think I will get there. My weekday hill loops - 3 1-hour sessions per week - are getting faster and longer. Around 1400 ft of elevation in an hour, typically. I don't really have the time to do 40/50/60 mile rides.
dugla is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 08:18 AM
  #46  
superpletch
faster downhill
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 260

Bikes: more than my wife can keep track of

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 147 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
ride more to get faster.

best upgrade to go faster is a good wheel set with great tires that have low rolling resistance
superpletch is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 08:52 AM
  #47  
ironwood
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Boston area
Posts: 1,903

Bikes: 1984 Bridgestone 400 1985Univega nouevo sport 650b conversion 1993b'stone RBT 1985 Schwinn Tempo

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 472 Post(s)
Liked 68 Times in 46 Posts
"Fast" Eddy Merckx said the way to get fast is to "Ride lots.".

Last edited by ironwood; 08-08-19 at 10:17 AM. Reason: spelling
ironwood is offline  
Old 08-08-19, 08:56 AM
  #48  
ksryder
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 2,282

Bikes: yes

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1048 Post(s)
Liked 293 Times in 174 Posts
I mean I know plenty of people who ride thousands of miles a year who are slow. Literally every training program I've ever seen is basically variations on high intensity intervals. I didn't start getting faster until I did some targeted training.

Riding with other fast people also helps.
ksryder is offline  
Likes For ksryder:
Old 08-08-19, 09:18 AM
  #49  
Bandera 
~>~
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: TX Hill Country
Posts: 5,931
Mentioned: 87 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1112 Post(s)
Liked 166 Times in 110 Posts
Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
"Fast" Eddie Mertz said the way to get fastis "Ride lots.".
Isn't that Fred Mertz, Ethyl's husband?
__________________
'74 Raleigh Internat'l. '77 Trek TX900 FG. '90 Vitus 979. '10 Merckx EMX3. '13 Soma Stanyan

Last edited by Bandera; 08-08-19 at 01:41 PM.
Bandera is offline  
Likes For Bandera:
Old 08-08-19, 09:37 AM
  #50  
Brocephus
Professional amateur
 
Brocephus's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Ga.
Posts: 629

Bikes: Does a Big Wheel count ?

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 286 Post(s)
Liked 115 Times in 76 Posts
...or "Fast" Eddie Felson, from The Hustler ?
Brocephus is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.