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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My LBS told me recently that Ti frames become creaky, especially at the bottom bracket, after several years. Is there any truth to this statement?

I'm curious as I'm considering either a steel Bianchi Pinella which they will sell or a Ti Litespeed Teramo which they do not sell.

Your thoughts?
 

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Say "nuke-u-lar"
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It doesn't seem to be the amount of time,

but the mix of components and how you assemble them that counts most. My first ti frame is my Moots YBB (mtb), and it did creak with particular bottom brackets which were fixed with thread filler or nylon type and attention to torque; the current bottom bracket has no issues. I thought I might have some trouble with the TST ti (road) frame I just bought and built up, but not a peep so far (and with no special prep). I've had some friends with ti bikes who on occasion had a creak or two but nothing significant and nothing that couldn't be fixed by servicing the bottom bracket appropriately. I sure wouldn't worry about purchasing a ti bike for that issue at all...
 

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HANK
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Ti creaking

Bikinfoolferlife said:
but the mix of components and how you assemble them that counts most. My first ti frame is my Moots YBB (mtb), and it did creak with particular bottom brackets which were fixed with thread filler or nylon type and attention to torque; the current bottom bracket has no issues. I thought I might have some trouble with the TST ti (road) frame I just bought and built up, but not a peep so far (and with no special prep). I've had some friends with ti bikes who on occasion had a creak or two but nothing significant and nothing that couldn't be fixed by servicing the bottom bracket appropriately. I sure wouldn't worry about purchasing a ti bike for that issue at all...
I have had several Ti bikes during the last 5 years. Creaking is not an issue.
 

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Typical LBS BS

Improperly prepared Ti frames with aluminum BB cups will indeed creak, but that is the fault of whoever put the bike together. If you clean the threads, grease the threads, and tighten to the torque specification, you won't have the problem. Ti frames are more prone to this problem than steel frames, but it is not a real issue. If this has been your LBS's experience, then they need to work on their wrenching skills!
 

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Yeah,LBS BS.

Kerry Irons said:
Improperly prepared Ti frames with aluminum BB cups will indeed creak, but that is the fault of whoever put the bike together. If you clean the threads, grease the threads, and tighten to the torque specification, you won't have the problem. Ti frames are more prone to this problem than steel frames, but it is not a real issue. If this has been your LBS's experience, then they need to work on their wrenching skills!
I've had 2 and no creaks.
 

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Believe it, Ti creaks

I own frames made of every material (or combination) known to man (and tolerated by my banker), including Unobtanium, as well as several ti frames made by two manufacturers, and the unavoidable truth is that ti creaks and Sidi squeaks. I use two top-notch shops to service whatever I don't on my bikes, and have found that eventually you will hear the creak.

You (and your ti riding buddies) will stare at the bottom bracket, push on a crank, twist the bars, push on the hoods, and grease or anti-sieze every junction of two dissimilar metals to no avail only to to learn, that it's the dreaded OP creak, or so you thought. Then, as your riding along in bliss with the drivetrain humming, it will strike again. This time, you'll start twisting your Sidis in the cleats convinced that this is the source of all on-bike noise, but it will not stop no matter how loose or tight you adjust the pedals.

You'll bring your bike to the shop where the good natured wrnech will pat you on the back and tell you to go to Dunkin' Donuts and everything will be fixed when your return. He will then lube and tighten every fastener on the bike, and assure you that you do not need teflon tape on the BB threads. You will be happy for a week or two, but it will come back.

At this point, you will smile self-assuredly knowing that the creak is emanating from the aluminum seatpost head and the titanium rails of the saddle, and out will come the tube of lube or anti-sieze...

Here's the universal truth that no one who appreciates the ride quality of ti and who has dumped $5K or more into a bike will tell you (except for LBS BS), they creak. No one knows why (C-40...please save the citations to engineering texts; Kerry...I don't care how many tests you've run in your basement lab ;-) ), ti creaks. Ignore it. Buy the bike that fits and excites you.

Rant over.
 

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I've had 5 ti bikes over the period of more than 10 years, 3 litespeed mtbs, 1 titus mtb, and one ti road bike. Never has one creaked at the BB.
 

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Burning Fists of Love
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thats [email protected]

SFCyclist said:
My LBS told me recently that Ti frames become creaky, especially at the bottom bracket, after several years. Is there any truth to this statement?

I'm curious as I'm considering either a steel Bianchi Pinella which they will sell or a Ti Litespeed Teramo which they do not sell.

Your thoughts?
They are wrong. Period.

However, finding the source of a creak is frustrating. The worst I recall was at the BB area, creaked only when the driver side pedal was pushed. Lubed, checked etc etc.

THEN ONE DAY, I decided hey, why not tighten the chain ring bolts? GUESS WHAT?

No more creak.

In the 2 years of researching a bike to buy, riding in all weather, on borrowed and personal bikes, on all materials, on high end and POS machines, I have never ever heard the assertion you mention in any way shape or form by a mechanic who knew what they were doing.

:cool:
 

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eminence grease
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That has not been my experience.

My first road bike was Ti, and over the years I've had it together and apart on many occasions. I've always been very judicious about using anti-sieze on the BB and I have never had a creak.

Same goes for my Calfee which sports a Ti BB shell. No sounds, and the only problem I've had with the BB interface came from the original installation by some dimwit that put the BB in dry. Even it didn't creak, although it did take a 24" crescent wrench to get it out.

I think it's a myth.
 

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Too bad for you

Sorry to hear about your experiences. We've got two Ti bikes in the family, one with over 60K miles on it, and neither squeaks or clicks, etc. Sounds like you've either got to upgrade your mechanics or get on the right side of the time-space continuum.
 

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Yes, Ti can be Creaky

Take it from someone who has assembled some ti frames... it can be creaky. All the prognosticators can spend as much time as they want in the lab, but it can be noisy. Make sure that anti-sieze is used in place of grease wherever Ti and Al meet, and you should be OK. But the sound can come back... This is no reason not to go Ti, however! IF properly maintained, this usually doesn't pose a huge problem. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
scoresman927 said:
Take it from someone who has assembled some ti frames... it can be creaky. All the prognosticators can spend as much time as they want in the lab, but it can be noisy. Make sure that anti-sieze is used in place of grease wherever Ti and Al meet, and you should be OK. But the sound can come back... This is no reason not to go Ti, however! IF properly maintained, this usually doesn't pose a huge problem. :)
What are your recommendations for properly maintaining a Ti frame?
 

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Anti-Seize

SFCyclist said:
What are your recommendations for properly maintaining a Ti frame?
Just make sure and re-apply your anti-seize (esp to BB) every year or however often you OverHaul your bike, and you should be fine. I think it's odd that your shop would make it sound like such a big deal... it's really not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
scoresman927 said:
Just make sure and re-apply your anti-seize (esp to BB) every year or however often you OverHaul your bike, and you should be fine. I think it's odd that your shop would make it sound like such a big deal... it's really not.
Thanks everyone for your feedback. I'm definately leaning towards a Ti frame again.
 

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Ever Think

I do not know the credibility of your bike shop, so I really can't stand behind my assumption. But maybe the reason they don't think you should go with the TI bike is because they don't sell the TI bike. I say this becaues the local bike shop down here seems to get a little bit angry when I by a bike from somewhere else. Which would be one of the reasons that I don't go there very often. I am stuck with them though because they happen to be the only bike shop where I live (and man does that suck). Anyways I have a TI/Carbon mix bike (Carrera Adone RC) and really haven't noticed any creaks. So I say if you have your heart set on TI go with TI, for my money there are no other substitutes.
 

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Juanmoretime
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1997 Lightspeed Vortex.

I have an 8 year old frame that is as sweet as the day I bought it. I've only had two creaks in my 8 years of ownership of this frame. One was the [email protected] Dura Ace 9 speed bottom bracket. The second was one time I didn't have my front skewer tensioned properly. Both were easy to fix, I went Campy and tightened the skewer properly.
 

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MerckxMad said:
I own frames made of every material (or combination) known to man (and tolerated by my banker), including Unobtanium, as well as several ti frames made by two manufacturers, and the unavoidable truth is that ti creaks and Sidi squeaks. I use two top-notch shops to service whatever I don't on my bikes, and have found that eventually you will hear the creak.

You (and your ti riding buddies) will stare at the bottom bracket, push on a crank, twist the bars, push on the hoods, and grease or anti-sieze every junction of two dissimilar metals to no avail only to to learn, that it's the dreaded OP creak, or so you thought. Then, as your riding along in bliss with the drivetrain humming, it will strike again. This time, you'll start twisting your Sidis in the cleats convinced that this is the source of all on-bike noise, but it will not stop no matter how loose or tight you adjust the pedals.

You'll bring your bike to the shop where the good natured wrnech will pat you on the back and tell you to go to Dunkin' Donuts and everything will be fixed when your return. He will then lube and tighten every fastener on the bike, and assure you that you do not need teflon tape on the BB threads. You will be happy for a week or two, but it will come back.

At this point, you will smile self-assuredly knowing that the creak is emanating from the aluminum seatpost head and the titanium rails of the saddle, and out will come the tube of lube or anti-sieze...

Here's the universal truth that no one who appreciates the ride quality of ti and who has dumped $5K or more into a bike will tell you (except for LBS BS), they creak. No one knows why (C-40...please save the citations to engineering texts; Kerry...I don't care how many tests you've run in your basement lab ;-) ), ti creaks. Ignore it. Buy the bike that fits and excites you.

Rant over.
listen to this man... he knows his facts. ti CAN creak and once it does you'll feel miserable. want silence? ride on steel. i hate creaks. creaks ruin your self confidence, ruins your vibe, turns your blissfull ride to misery.
 

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scoresman927 said:
Just make sure and re-apply your anti-seize (esp to BB) every year or however often you OverHaul your bike, and you should be fine. I think it's odd that your shop would make it sound like such a big deal... it's really not.
... and don't forget greasing the seat collar!
 
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