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The shifting winds of opinion

Old 06-02-16, 09:45 PM
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Banzai
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The shifting winds of opinion

My, how times change. I was perusing the recent issue of Bicycling (I know, I know...but I was on the road, and a bit strapped for material), and I noticed some interesting ideas/opinions that would have never been mentioned a few years ago. It's not the first time I've read thing along these lines either.

Apparently, it is now stylish and acceptable to refer to 68mm threaded bottom brackets as "creak-free" as a routine descriptor. Years after most of us decided that BB/PF 30 bottom brackets were creaky "solutions" in search of a problem, the magazines have finally come around from touting them as the best thing ever.

It is also very stylish now to praise Aluminum bikes, which were once the red-headed step-children of the bicycle world. They used to be "harsh" and "unrefined" and whatnot. Now they are lively, yet as muted as carbon, or like carbon, but "more metal", etc. This has paralleled the industry's re-entry into AL with the rising cost of CF globally.

Funny.
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Old 06-02-16, 10:36 PM
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I don't read hobbyist rags because IMO they're just a bunch of blowhard articles written by industry insiders. So called "expert opinion" changes faster than the weather and it seems to be heavily influenced by whoever is picking up the tab at the next product release or press event.


-Kedosto
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Old 06-03-16, 05:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Banzai View Post
It is also very stylish now to praise Aluminum bikes, which were once the red-headed step-children of the bicycle world. They used to be "harsh" and "unrefined" and whatnot. Now they are lively, yet as muted as carbon, or like carbon, but "more metal", etc. This has paralleled the industry's re-entry into AL with the rising cost of CF globally.
Goes around and comes around. I'm old enough to remember the pre-Klein aluminum bikes. They had tubes the same outer diameter as the steel frame bikes of the time. NOBODY called them harsh. They were light but flexy.
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Old 06-03-16, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Goes around and comes around. I'm old enough to remember the pre-Klein aluminum bikes. They had tubes the same outer diameter as the steel frame bikes of the time. NOBODY called them harsh. They were light but flexy.
First aluminium i rode was a Vitus and it was quite flexy. Sounds like the bike you are referencing.
I later owned a Cannondale, it was harsh and transmitted a lot of vibration on skinny race tires.
Last year I had a chance to ride a newer aluminium road bike and although I still prefer steel or Ti, I could easily live with that bike.

Opinions change, but bikes change too.
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Old 06-03-16, 07:10 AM
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Carbon fiber production globally 2014 statistics:

? Carbon fiber production capacity top countries 2014 | Statistic
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Old 06-03-16, 08:56 AM
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Point remains. Magazines like that are essentially extend-format advertisements. They always push the latest, usually test the higher-end models (and make a big deakl of it when they don't) and always support whatever ideas the manufacturers want promoted---otherwise, no ads and no jobs riding bicycles. The cannot pan the bikes or parts they "review" because if they pan a product, they won't get any more for free---and then no jobs riding bicycles.

If they call out the industry for its tactics (like trickling in upgrades every season to promote more sales or pushing whatever tech is best for the manufacturers, not the riders) .... Read enough iof them and you can write the reviews yourself, just plug the name of whichever bike into the appropriate places .... stiff but not too stiff, compliant but not flexy, noted no flex in the bottom bracket even hammering out of the saddle, tracked true carving fast descents ....

The onkly bike you will ever see dumped on in a bike magazine ion a big-box BSO ... because dumping on those helps the big factories. Otherwise, every bike or bike-related product out there is not only exceptionally excellent, but essential.
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Old 06-03-16, 10:16 AM
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I don't trust anything a Bicycling magaszine article says. I remember articles in that magazine that were totally against 15 ears adthey strongly stated that you didn't need 15 gears on any bicycle.

Cheers
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Old 06-03-16, 10:25 AM
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Old 06-03-16, 01:01 PM
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I ride a Masi AL with CF fork and stays and a steel Guru with CF fork. Love them both. Had my first ride on a CF bike (Bianchi Intenso) and liked it but it was noisy. Didn't like it enough to pay twice the price.
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Old 06-03-16, 04:42 PM
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Confessions of a bike reviewer. Why I lied for 39 years.

https://tomdemerly.com/2016/04/28/co...-for-39-years/
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Old 06-03-16, 10:05 PM
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Constant change....always making the public want what they don't have. After everyone threw away their steel and aluminum bikes for the latest and greatest plastic....now it's time to throw away your plastic bike and get the latest and greatest aluminum! After you've thrown away your "old-fashioned" mechanical [snicker] groupset for that "Oh so wonderful electronic shifting", it's time to go back to "trouble-free no-battery-to-recharge" mechanical....

What's old is new........

They've spend the last 15 years disparaging all of the good old durable perfectly functional cycling stuff, so you'd buy the new stuff...and once everyone has the new stuff...hey!, It's time to make the old stuff cool again! And once everyone has gone back to that...they'll start pushing new stuff again.... Whatever they can do to stimulate sales for the industry whom their magazines exist to serve, 'cause they are the ones who pay the bills.

Meanwhile last week, they were trying to make us feel like we were lower than dirt, and pure Luddites if didn't have those "wonderful" BB30's....now they go back to telling the truth....68mm threaded BB's were the best- of course, after they're sure everyone's gotten rid of their old stuff, so there will be no compatibility, and you'll have to buy everything new if you want that "cool retro stuff that actually works and lasts".....

The old stuff always worked just fine for me, so I stuck with it. Looks like my old Klein may be coming back into style!

Oh, maybe they'll push metal bikes, but with disc brakes now...until discs have run their course...then they'll be like "Hey, ya know what? Rim brakes on road bikes were perfectly fine, and lighter and less fussy, and still provided all the stopping power 1"-wide tires could ever handle...pity that you'll need new wheels if you want to go back to them and get rid of those ridiculous discs!". New ads will boast "The NEW Dogma! Made of 853 tubing with chrome lugs, and now...DISC-FREE!!".
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Old 06-06-16, 10:24 AM
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The "review" that made me write this post was the one in the recent issue for the "Vynl" road bike. The pictures look as unexceptional as any Nashbar alloy frame (and I'm not knocking them...I like those Nashbar frames), except it has a snazzy green color and a cool name. Here are the particular blurbs:

Originally Posted by Bicycling Magazine
Aluminum can be an excellent material for a race bike: lighter than steel, more communicative than titanium...the right bike maker can give it a damped, almost smooth ride that also feels stiff and swift - like a good carbon bike, but more...metal
Then followed with this particular piece of mumbo-jumbo:

Originally Posted by Bicycling Magazine
It can be organic, gritty, and earthy, as if even after it's elements were mined from the earth it somehow stayed connected to its core.
YGBSM. And who says there's not work out there for English majors or poets?

Finally, the coup-de-grace of the reversal of years:

Originally Posted by Bicycling Magazine
Creak-free threaded bottom bracket.
This is completely opposite of everything that Bicycling has been telling me for years! What do I do now?

I write this as a guy who rides an AL CAAD9, but who has also suffered through BB30 woes. So for a while my bike was "meh" but my bottom bracket was "the best", and now my bike is awesome, but I finally have vindication for the BB issues that everyone said I was wrong about. Though, to be fair, I did finally get the creak to vanish for a year now, which is a new record.

So confused.
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Old 06-06-16, 11:10 AM
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#bsa4lyfe !
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Old 06-06-16, 11:48 AM
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From the sound of this GCN Video, it's not just opinions that are shifting, but designs, methods and materials too.

My 2005 Felt F55 (carbon and aluminum) snapped at the aluminum chainstay, and the free replacement (2009) frame in its place is already exhibiting the oxidizing & bubbling under the paint near both sets of bottle bosses.


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Old 06-06-16, 12:58 PM
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Give your bike to me. I will thoroughly analyze it and return with a response in about ten years.

Yeah, that is some pretty imaginative writing ... but that's advertising.

All the creative types who actually enjoyed food and shelter leaned long ago that the real money was in advertising---and those mags are just long-form ads.

No money in novels except "novelizations" of TV movies, poetry is a money-loser, paintings only sell if they look like the work of three-year-olds, and then only if the "artist" can act eccentric and spout meaningless "theories" of his "work."

People with real creative ability do ads ... and write stuff like "It can be organic, gritty, and earthy, as if even after it's elements were mined from the earth it somehow stayed connected to its core."

Which is pretty much entirely bollocks.

Apparently we should all be riding dirty bicycles made of dirt.
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Old 06-06-16, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Banzai View Post
Apparently, it is now stylish and acceptable to refer to 68mm threaded bottom brackets as "creak-free" as a routine descriptor. Years after most of us decided that BB/PF 30 bottom brackets were creaky "solutions" in search of a problem, the magazines have finally come around from touting them as the best thing ever.
I haven't noticed that yet. There is a new T47 standard that is supposed to be creak-free. Whether it will be widely adopted is another question.

Could Chris King?s new bottom bracket end press-fit problems? - BikeRadar
T47 vs press-fit bottom brackets - BikeRadar

I've been experimenting a bit with Campy, and am now wondering why one can't have an ultratorque BB without cups. Perhaps design it to grease the bearing cartridges with a minimal amount of bearing float.
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Old 06-06-16, 01:44 PM
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I admit enjoying those reviews, especially of the "super bikes". It's just daydream stuff, really, and you can't take the "vertically compliant but laterally stiff" gibberish too seriously. It's pretty hard to quantify how a bike rides in a review, I think. I've gone to bike shops & shows, tried a handful of bikes, made notes, figured out what I like, what I don't. I think I've tried at least one of "everything" in the last few years (alum, carbon, steel, Campy Vs Shimano vs SRAM, elec shifting, disk, etc.) I realized you can't believe the hype in a magazine, especially about such an intangible thing as how a bike rides. It's just another opinion (though they never met a bike they didn't like!)
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Old 06-06-16, 01:46 PM
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What does it mean to "feel like carbon but more metal?"
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