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How much difference does a stiffer frame make to light rider as myself (123 lbs). What are the largest differences in frames that i would notice?
 

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Curious question. I'm interested too.

FWIW, I weigh in at 144lbs. I have a steel framed bike (Colnago MasterXLite) and a CF (PedalForce RS). I don't notice any stiffness differences between the 2. I also have an older steel Bianchi San Remo. That one is flexy, even at my weight. It climbs like a slug and has poor power transmission.
 

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Stiffness meaning

flarefire said:
How much difference does a stiffer frame make to light rider as myself (123 lbs). What are the largest differences in frames that i would notice?
Presumably at 123 lb, you are fairly short, and therefore on a fairly small frame, which is automatically stiffer. However, frame stiffness is a personal preference, not a performance feature.
 

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Peter P. said:
All of today's bikes are stiff enough for practically ANY rider-steel, titanium, aluminum, or carbon. Stiffness is overrated. I weigh 130lbs. so I can relate. Trust me; if you're not winning sprints it isn't because the bike is flexy.
A long time ago, one of my coaches used to address complaints about frame stiffness thus: "Delight in the chain rattling against the front derailleur. It's the audible expression of your manly strength and your drive to win."
 

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I'm on the heavier side of a short man's spectrum (150, 5-6). I have a Columbus Spirit frame with carbon stays and fork that is 2 years old, and a Colnago Super with SL tubing that is 24 years old. Neither flexes.

As a reference point, at one time in my life, I could leg press almost 400 pounds, FWIW.

Also FWIW, if you do feel any flex, you might want to check your tire pressure . Low TP sometimes gives off the feeling of frame flex.
 

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Most frames in your size will be too stiff.
You'd probably be happy with an "old school" steel frame with a 1" dia top tube.
 

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MR_GRUMPY said:
Most frames in your size will be too stiff.
You'd probably be happy with an "old school" steel frame with a 1" dia top tube.
Hmm...interesting. Too stiff. What would be the results of having a frame that is too stiff?

How would the rider know?

I imagine the better known/better frames - like Gunnar, Torelli and a few others - might be too stiff for us smaller/lighter guys.
 

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I think stiffness is overrated. In my humble opinion, the only ones who should be worried about frame stiffness, or lack thereof, are the guys who are 6' 5"/250lbs locomotives who are riding 62cm or larger frames. Think about how much a wheel is flexing under that weight in a sprint or climb....very much compared to a frame.

brewster
 

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brewster said:
I think stiffness is overrated. In my humble opinion, the only ones who should be worried about frame stiffness, or lack thereof, are the guys who are 6' 5"/250lbs locomotives who are riding 62cm or larger frames. Think about how much a wheel is flexing under that weight in a sprint or climb....very much compared to a frame.

brewster
Correct. Sometimes -- rarely -- on a steep climb, I feel my wheels flex a bit, but not the frame. I think the tell-tale sign of frame flex would be chain rub at the front derailleur. I'm not sure, as I don't get it with my steel frames.

I ride Bontrager Race Lite wheels, btw. They're reliable, though maybe not the stiffest wheelset.
 

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134 pounds here, i bought an 09 roubaix elite a while ago but tested it first against a tarmac elite to see which one id like more, thease 2 bikes are supposed to be opposite ends of the stiffness spectrum but i didnt notice any flex in either one.
 

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I am only 135 pounds, but 5'10" tall so I ride 55-56cm frames.

Even at the larger sizes, I can never detect frame flex.

I have ridden all the frame materials over the past 15 years and must say that all modern stuff for riders our weight, seem to be equally stiff and flex free for own detection.

the only thing I can flex on my bike is the handlebar and saddel rails. I imagine that bigger riders could flex a frame the way I can flex a handelbar.
 
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