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Been thinking off getting an aluminium frame for racing crits and training... Finally narrowed down my choice to a Specialized S-Works E5 frame... Finally went down to the LBS to check out the prices and found an Allez Pro hanging on the walls and it is actually cheaper than the full alu E5 even though it has carbon seat stays.... Went home and did a little research and found that they use the same tubings, carbon forks and have identical geometry... the only difference is just the carbon stay and the added weight it gives to the Allez Pro...

It just seems very weird that a carbon reared frame cost less.... So wat is the catch here?... I only know that the Allez is lower in the range of products for Specialized but it should ride the same or better since it has identical geometry, tubings and a carbon stay? Am I rite? They look the same even with the exception of the wordings Allez/SWorks on the top tube...
 

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Vinokourov said:
Been thinking off getting an aluminium frame for racing crits and training... Finally narrowed down my choice to a Specialized S-Works E5 frame... Finally went down to the LBS to check out the prices and found an Allez Pro hanging on the walls and it is actually cheaper than the full alu E5 even though it has carbon seat stays.... Went home and did a little research and found that they use the same tubings, carbon forks and have identical geometry... the only difference is just the carbon stay and the added weight it gives to the Allez Pro...

It just seems very weird that a carbon reared frame cost less.... So wat is the catch here?... I only know that the Allez is lower in the range of products for Specialized but it should ride the same or better since it has identical geometry, tubings and a carbon stay? Am I rite? They look the same even with the exception of the wordings Allez/SWorks on the top tube...

Go with the Allez Pro- it's a really nice bike- great crit racer (a guy on our club just bought one for that specific reason).

The S-Works E5 is a bit of a legacy product- really superceded by the S-Works carbon bikes. Most of E5's are done on team or club teams I think, as otherwise the complete Allez's are better deals.

FWIW- have of the club seems to be riding on Specialized bikes- many, many Allez's, but the Tarmacs are coming on strong lately (it's an amazing framset!).

Hope this helps.

:)
 

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Alien Musician
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Yes, don't forget to check the Tarmac out - they're considerably more expensive
but every time I see someone on one for a test ride they're practically giddy with
glee about how it just wants to keep going "faster and faster". If I had the cash
I'd consider it too.

But yeah, I saw the Allez Pro as well and it looks like a sweet ride for the price.
 

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Coolhand pretty much nailed this one. The Allez framset is a great deal and would be perfect for crits. If I was in your shoes, I'd go for it. I just sold an S-Works E5 framset, which I loved ... although the S-Works Tarmac that replaced it is definitely a sweet ride. :)
 

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The Right Wing
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Important data missing

How much was the E5 frameset? It wasn't built up or anything was it? You should be able to get an E-5 with seatpost and headset for $900. Worth every penney.

Just curious, why do you expect carbon stays and their glued joints and higher weight, and less stiffness to ADD price to a frame?
 

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Want a good crit bike?

53T said:
How much was the E5 frameset? It wasn't built up or anything was it? You should be able to get an E-5 with seatpost and headset for $900. Worth every penney.

Just curious, why do you expect carbon stays and their glued joints and higher weight, and less stiffness to ADD price to a frame?
Want a good cheap light crit bike? Giant aluminum frames folks. Cheap. Light. Stiff. And they last. One can be had for $300 easy, or less.
 

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RoadBikeReview's Member
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53T said:
Just curious, why do you expect carbon stays and their glued joints and higher weight, and less stiffness to ADD price to a frame?
Cuz so many people are so happy to choke up extra money for CF seatstays on their bike, cuz they think it will smooth out the ride, when in reality it's the geometry that's making the bikes so vertically stiff...
Look at Trek's line as an example of what the mainstream wants; as soon as you get to Ultegra Components and their "ZR9000 proprietary tubing", you get CF seatstays, because people want CF. they don't care about actual weight or anything like that. Cuz hell, it's CF! It's Light! Stiff! Fast! Vibe-Damping!
(P.S. no, i'm not saying CF sucks, I'm saying CF seatstays aren't exactly the most logical things, so pleaaaase dont flame me, carbon lovers :p )
yeah.
-estone2
 

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S-Works E5

I have an 05 S-Works E5 and wondered the same thing. Somebody somewhere told me that the S Works has more/different butting on the tubing. I have no idea wheter this is true or not, but visually they look identical other than the carbon rear end. I however, am most definetely in love with the ride of the bike. I have a USE carbon Alien post on it and the "road noise" is muted. I must admit that the only thing that I have to compare it to was the Cannondale CAAD4 it replaced. I would be curious to know what you find out. Sans peur.
 

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Unrepentant Mountainbiker
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Vinokourov said:
Went home and did a little research and found that they use the same tubings, carbon forks and have identical geometry... the only difference is just the carbon stay and the added weight it gives to the Allez Pro...
QUOTE]

Actually, the Allez head tube is 10mm longer across the board. So, if you are running 1cm or more of spacers on your S-works E5, geometry wise, you might as well be rolling an Allez.
 

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WhiskeyNovember said:
In what ways are carbon fiber seatstays not "logical"? Be specific, please.
If you are a weight weenie (and lets face it, we all are to some extent) than CF stays on an AL frame actually increase the weight of the frame. Also, in the eyes of some, the bond between the AL frame and CF stays is a weak spot and increases the chances of frame failure. Not to mention that many bikes with CF stays are not repairable in the case that you somehow damage the rear dropout area on the frame.

All of these factors must be considered when looking at an AL frame with CF stays. You should weigh real and possible disadvantages of running that frame vs an all AL or all CF frame before making your purchase.

I did this just recently and decided against getting the Allez Expert (AL frame CF stays) and went with a Tarmac Comp for the same $$$. Sure, I got lower end components, but the frame seems to work better for me as a single material than as a blend of the two. Of course, YMMV.
 

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freezin_is_the_reason said:
If you are a weight weenie (and lets face it, we all are to some extent) than CF stays on an AL frame actually increase the weight of the frame.
Well, your original statement didn't include the qualifier "If you are a weight weenie". You implied that carbon fiber seatstays are illogical in general, which is not very accurate.

freezin_is_the_reason said:
Also, in the eyes of some, the bond between the AL frame and CF stays is a weak spot and increases the chances of frame failure.
In the eyes of the rest of us, neither carbon fiber, nor carbon-to-aluminum bonding can be at all generalized. There are certainly bad examples that are indeed weak spots, but there are more examples where the bond is as solid or more solid than welded aluminum. Again, carbon fiber and carbon fiber bonding <i>cannot</i> be generalized, as there are simply too many variables.

freezin_is_the_reason said:
Not to mention that many bikes with CF stays are not repairable in the case that you somehow damage the rear dropout area on the frame.
Irrevelent. That some bikes don't offer dropout replacement doesn't negate the inherent advantages of carbon fiber stays. Besides, the same can be said for many bikes with <i>aluminum</i> stays.

freezin_is_the_reason said:
All of these factors must be considered when looking at an AL frame with CF stays. You should weigh real and possible disadvantages of running that frame vs an all AL or all CF frame before making your purchase.
Indeed, and if the actual market and sales trends are any indication, carbon fiber seatstays are <i>very</i> logical. After all...road bike buyers <i>do</i> tend to research their options rather well...

freezin_is_the_reason said:
the frame seems to work better for me as a single material than as a blend of the two.
Key words, "for me". It's important not to let one's personal preference dictate what is and isn't "logical" overall.

When it's all said and done, carbon fiber seatstays aren't logical <i>for you</i>....but that doesn't make them illogical in general, as your original statement implied. ;)
 

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They do not use the same tubing.

Alloys are different (E5 in S-Works name denotes alloy from which it is made). Allez uses other alloy (I guess, A1). Specialized clains that E5 is superior in its technical characteristics, but how much it is true, and how much marketing gimmik, I can not say (as far as I can remember, I have not seen any numbers, just claims.

Vinokourov said:
Been thinking off getting an aluminium frame for racing crits and training... Finally narrowed down my choice to a Specialized S-Works E5 frame... Finally went down to the LBS to check out the prices and found an Allez Pro hanging on the walls and it is actually cheaper than the full alu E5 even though it has carbon seat stays.... Went home and did a little research and found that they use the same tubings, carbon forks and have identical geometry... the only difference is just the carbon stay and the added weight it gives to the Allez Pro...

It just seems very weird that a carbon reared frame cost less.... So wat is the catch here?... I only know that the Allez is lower in the range of products for Specialized but it should ride the same or better since it has identical geometry, tubings and a carbon stay? Am I rite? They look the same even with the exception of the wordings Allez/SWorks on the top tube...
 

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Unrepentant Mountainbiker
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Well, your original statement didn't include the qualifier "If you are a weight weenie". You implied that carbon fiber seatstays are illogical in general, which is not very accurate.
Careful, you might want to re-read the thread and you will see that this was my original statement. I was simply responding to your question. I gave a list of reasons why multi-material frames COULD be considered illogical. In aswer to YOUR question. If you had asked about possible downsides to a CF frameI would have listed them as well.

I have nothing against multi-material frames. There are plenty of examples of very well executed mult-material frames out there. My wife rides a Lemond Spine bike and absolutely loves it. I have ridden the bike too and have to agree that it has a unique ride quality.

You obviously own an AL frame w/CF stays. I hope that you are satisfied with your purchase and that you have many years of trouble free use out of your frame. They seem to be very fashionable right now.
 

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al0 said:
They do not use the same tubing.

Alloys are different (E5 in S-Works name denotes alloy from which it is made). Allez uses other alloy (I guess, A1). Specialized clains that E5 is superior in its technical characteristics, but how much it is true, and how much marketing gimmik, I can not say (as far as I can remember, I have not seen any numbers, just claims.
The Allez acctually uses E5 Tubing with aluminum stays in the Allez elite, and Allez Comp, Expert and Pro use E5 tubing with the carbon stays. The only frame that uses the A1 is the Allez and the Sport.
 

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WhiskeyNovember said:
In what ways are carbon fiber seatstays not "logical"? Be specific, please.
Because in at least my experience, geometry is the singlemost important factor present. An example, I test rode a Trek 2300 and my triceps were throbbing afterwards, it's got CF seatstays, but I felt every single pebble that bike went over.
On the flipside, on my aluminum-framed, CF forked road bike, (Trek 1200, yeahhh heavy.) I find that it mutes the pebbles and so forth (though over a road I will often get road vibrations, but not near the level of the 2300's)
Consulting Trek's website you see different geometry between the 1200 and the 2300 - If I am correct, there's a slacker seat tube and head tube (just guessing! haven't looked, it's jsut that the 1200's not intended so much for racing, and the 2300 is, so it should be more aggressive).
As such, CF seatstays sometimes seem like a substitute for good geometry; Where you could design seat and chain stays to dampen vibration, instead you put Carbon Fiber, and hope that it's properties break up the vibration.
When you have a welded AL frame, it's pretty much one piece. The CF is glued in when it's a seatstay, and I'm not a metallurgist (if that's the word), but I doubt that glue is stronger than a weld, regardless of glue quality/strength. As such, It's a flex point, and decreases stiffness, because where the AL was one flexpoint (the whole chainstay/seatstay), the Carbon is two; it eliminates the chain/seatstay as a flex point, but both bonding joints (bottom/top of chain/seatstay) are flex points. 2>1, so it doesnt sound as stiff.

Carbon fiber seat stays could be absolutely wonderful, and could be put on an extremely high end, very nice bike. But it seems that too many manufacturers are simply throwing them on, as an attempt to get rid of road vibration, and skimping on frame design.
If you were to incorporate them fully, and fully utilize all of CF's qualities, it could probably be very nice - a design similar to the Cannondale Six13 could work well, with a full chain/seatstay of CF, if designed properly.
It looks like too much of an easy way out for the manufacturers, and when a CF-stayed bike produces the same ride or a harsher ride than an AL bike, it seems that the sales pitches of smoothing out the ride just aren't true, unless properly utilized, which I don't think they're being.
-estone2
 

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I was in the same boat about a month ago. I rode the allez with the carbon seat stays, E5 S-Works, and Tarmac Pro. I really didn't notice anything different in ride. What I didn't notice with the E5 when it came time to but the hammer done the bike reacted quickly. I also beleive that the allez uses the same tubing but it has a thicker wall so the frame weighs more compared to the E5. The only tarmac I would buy would be the s-works SL but I don't have that kind of money for the frame. Also in all the crits I do there are alot E5 that people ride. So I went the S-works E5.
 

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you don't want to drop a lot of money on a crit bike. Just my $.02. I picked up this Scott Speedster frame, headset, and fork on ebay for $225 a couple weeks ago. If/when I crash this it'll suck but I won't shed as many tears as if I destroy a more expensive frame:




Also, I don't think the Roubaix would be a good crit bike as it has a longer wheelbase?
 
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