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I have a chance to buy a Trek X01 as my first cross bike; will be using it mainly road, light offroad, probably not racing it. Based on the frame color (orange) I'm thinking it's at least older than 2003 since the Trek archives show the 2003 model in black.

I know it depends on how hard it's been ridden and how many crashes, but any rules of thumb on when an aluminum frame might be getting too old?
 

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No way to tell, it depends on how big the person is that was riding it, terrain, so many factors that's why if you are concerned about that then get a new one.
 

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teleguy57 said:
I have a chance to buy a Trek X01 as my first cross bike; will be using it mainly road, light offroad, probably not racing it. Based on the frame color (orange) I'm thinking it's at least older than 2003 since the Trek archives show the 2003 model in black.

I know it depends on how hard it's been ridden and how many crashes, but any rules of thumb on when an aluminum frame might be getting too old?
Depends on your personality, family guy or serial playa? Seriously.
 

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Each time a Al frame is being ridden it is fatiguing. Al has a terminal life. So a used Al frame is an unknown, it could be 3 months or 3 years.
 

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my experience with aluminum frames has been the two weak points are the rear tirangle alignment after repeated crashing, shipping by airplane, etc. and the tendency for the steel axle to wear into the softer aluminum dropout causing the wheel to sit crooked. That and cracks in the welds.

I wouldn't overpay for the bike.
 

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I have a 2001 XO1. Still racing the crap out of it. Did 24 cross races on it last year and it's still better than me.

I consider this talk about fatigue life of Al to be nonsense. Frames will fail at the welds or near/at the dropouts due to inherent weaknesses there. As long as it does not suffer any significant dents you will need to ride it for a lifetime before encountering fatigue.

btw, I can't recall ever having seen an orange XO-1. The earlier models were blue, blank and a weird kind of yellow - afair.
 

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I've been racing the same AL Conquest Pro frame for 4 seasons. I crashed it pretty hard a couple of seasons ago and separated my shoulder. No issues with the frame at all.
 

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Do you know how it was ridden? If it was a cross bike for an aggressive Clyde who rode every day you might have an issue. Otherwise, it might be worth a risk if you can get it for the right price- old bikes, unless classics, aren't worth very much. The one aluminum frame I had fail began to crack. When I saw the crack that was it. It didn't just fail catastrophically. I didn't give it the chance.

Wash your bike, not to keep it clean, but to inspect it. When you've got all the dirt off it you've inspected the whole thing and there's no place for a crack to hide. Also listen for unusual sounds and check when you hear them.
 

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carlosflanders said:
btw, I can't recall ever having seen an orange XO-1. The earlier models were blue, blank and a weird kind of yellow - afair.
IIRC, the first year that the XO-1 came out it was kind of a burnt orange to almost a gold color. That might be the one he is looking at.

If that's the case, here's a couple of other things to think about.

Is it a complete bike or just the frame (and fork)?

The bike was spec'ed with an 8speed drivetrain. This isn't a big deal, unless you already have a road bike that has 9 or 10 sp gearing. Even then, not a big deal, but an annoyance that you can't just swap wheels from one bike to the other.

-The bike had a 1" headtube and threaded steerer. Again, not a big deal but 1" parts aren't as readily available as they used to be. If you need/want to swap a stem, replace the headset or the fork, your options will be a little more limited than with the now common 1 1/8" standard. Don't get me wrong, looking for a 1" threaded stem won't be like searching for the holy grail, you just won't have the variety of choices that you do with 1 1/8.
 
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