Author Topic: Why Al?

Frenchie

  • Guest
Why Al?
« on: June 11, 2012 »
Because a Cannondale CAAD is probably one of the nicest frames I have ever ridden, a frame one can thoroughly enjoy and use. Light, stiff, comfortable over distance, beautifully designed1 & made2 and well equiped out of the box, as a complete bike3. Mine is 3 years old and "handmade in the USA"4 and I would buy another one tomorrow. In many ways it is not what the vox populi typically makes of an aluminium5 frame; and even if the material ages and fatigues, let us remember that pleasure, by definition, is ephemeral.

1 Horizontal top tube.
2 Welds.
3 Only major change has been a new pair of soft Continental GP4000 tyres every year (they last 6 months).
4 Not than the USA are a typical place for elegant mechanical design. I favour European design in general.
5 Note the spelling.

sam

Re: Why Al?
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2012 »
One often reads gloomy predictions about aluminium fatigue strength, but I'd be curious how often it actually fails, at least during the life of the owner.

My oldest and most travelled bike, currently serving time on a turbo, is Al.

Quote
pleasure, by definition, is ephemeral.

Less so if you're a tantric cyclist.

Re: Why Al?
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2012 »
I think about frame failure now and again. My Al frame is unlacquered. Which means I have to get all abrasive on it now again. I imagine sometimes that I might overdo it and that I will one day set out on tubing that has been all but polished away, and that its gossamer remains will simply blow away like hopseed as the headwind gathers, leaving me pedalling a frameless bicycle - an assembly of components held in place for a moment by their forward motion. That probably isn't how it will happen. I think it wants to be a Ti bicycle.

sam

Re: Why Al?
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2012 »
All I know about physics I learned from Wiley E. Coyote, so this may be implausible, but I would postulate that as an object in motion tends to stay in motion, you should be able to carry on as long as you keep pedalling.


Re: Why Al?
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2012 »
That's reassuring. I'm also excited about the prospect that I might not cast a shadow.

Frenchie

  • Guest
Re: Why Al?
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2012 »
Hmmm, without wheel rotational inertia, what chance is there though? You deleted too much Sam...

sam

Re: Why Al?
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2012 »
Quote from: teecee
I'm also excited about the prospect that I might not cast a shadow.

Go to the equator! Nothing casts a shadow there. The downside is it's always high noon and gunfights over trifling matters are disturbingly frequent.



Quote from: Frenchie
Hmmm, without wheel rotational inertia, what chance is there though? You deleted too much Sam...

This is what happens when I'm too lazy to photoshop, and pick something up off the web: the science suffers. Speaking of which, I went to the science museum yesterday and discovered common ground between Al and Ti


Thank god for neutral Switzerland

The field of elemental bikes hasn't been adequately explored. Antimony [Sb], for example, is pleasingly silvery and lustrous, and quite toxic to unprotected bike thieves



While gold [Au] enriches all who touch it