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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
With all this talk about Steel vs Carbon, I just have to say that Aluminum has the 'style' advantage, by far. Although CF can have exotic shapes, it just doesn't hold paint well: the painted carbon frames just don't have the lustre of a painted aluminum frame.

This may seem a shallow point, but there's an eerie feeling one gets from a CF bike that looks as though it were made from recycled plastic bottles. Very toyish and cheap. All the newer CF bikes look like childish toys to me.

Another thought...I ride an older CF madone and while i loved it for the first couple of years, the novelty of the supersmooth ride is starting to wear off. I'm starting to reminisce about my old aluminum frame, which had a steel fork and the rides were zingy and refreshing. With CF, I feel as though i just got up off the couch after a 30+ mile ride.


So, I'm considering a new bike, possibly aluminum, possibly steel...though it may not be a good time because the shops are getting ready for the 2010 models.

My apologies to the steel fanatics, but although steel may offer a stellar ride, I'm afraid stylewise, they're all approximately the same to me: thin round tubes(boring).

So what I'd appreciate is if anyone has a favorite exotic looking and beautiful aluminum frame that they'd care to share, price not really being an issue. Let's just celebrate the beauty of aluminum frames.

Thank you for your inputs.

Here's one to start, although it has CF seatstays which I really would prefer it did not.
 

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Here's my scandium (just a fancy name for a slightly different aluminum) Merckx Team SC. I doubt there's a substantially better race bike than this from any material:

 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow, thats a beauty! The fat tubed aluminum Cannondales are what got me interested in bikes as an adult. Back in the early 90's, when i moved away from parents' home and into my first apartment, I was still riding an old raleigh steel that i had from my early teenage years. I still thought of cycling as primarily a way of commuting. The old raleigh steel was uninspiring visually and i never thought of it as 'fast'.

There was a cycling shop in the town that i moved to that featured Cannondale frames in the window. There was one that was tapered, fat on one end and thin on the other...with an out of this world paint job. Blew my mind. I wound up buying a trek from that shop but I still think about that Cannondale frame...the one i never had.
 

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So, to the OP, basically you're saying you want a bike that will beat you up? :lol:


And fwiw I now ride a CAAD and have a new Racemaster - so am firmly in the alu camp! :D
 

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Here's Mine 2003 Caad 7 5000SI
 

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Dave Hickey said:
My old Vitus 979....One of the smoothest riding frames I've owned
Does that bring back memories—and point out the silliness of tying "ride quality" (whatever that is) to frame material. Back in the day, an often-heard reply to "my race bike is an aluminum Vitus" was "how can you stand that soft noodle?" :D
 

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I like the Ridley frames, a Belgium company, and they offer a few models with a straight top bar which I insist on. They also are one of the few companies I have seen that offer Campy components. I know mine will wear out long before my steel frames, but I'll enjoy it while it lasts then salvage the components.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Tinea Pedis said:
So, to the OP, basically you're saying you want a bike that will beat you up? :lol:


And fwiw I now ride a CAAD and have a new Racemaster - so am firmly in the alu camp! :D
Beat up? No............Invigorated? Yes. ..........Most alu frames have a non-aluminum seatpost or fork. I don't care for carbon seatstays because that upsets the integrity of the frame. For a relatively light rider like myself, the aluminum frame could last a long time. The seatpost can always be swapped.

Anyways, sometimes its better to look good than to feel good. No?

Here's a fixie i came upon at my LBS thats a real work of art.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ahhh.. the AEDON black from Ridley. I'm not sure I'd go with black...as i want something a bit more flashy.



Speaking of flashy, here's a white TT from Masi.
 

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wim said:
Does that bring back memories—and point out the silliness of tying "ride quality" (whatever that is) to frame material. Back in the day, an often-heard reply to "my race bike is an aluminum Vitus" was "how can you stand that soft noodle?" :D
Yep. Tell Sean Kelly that.:D
 

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Nice to see another aluminum aficianado. Couldn't agree more about carbon fiber looking too much like plastic. I ride a Cinelli starship, with pride. It's great fun to drop the carbon fiber wonderbikes with class. I think BMC says it all when they design a sprinters bike with an aluminum base for stiffness.
 

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aluminum = instant credibility.

I had a custom painted candy apple green cannondale 3.0 frame back in the day. I loved that bike.
 

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I currently ride a Giant OCR1, my first road bike. I use it for everything, from group rides to commuting, and it's taking quite a beating from the MA roads around my house.

I'm in the process of trying to figure out more of a 'weekend' bike. I've been debating CF vs. Aluminum. I have no problems with my current ride and have never even tried out a CF bike. I'm eying the Cervelo S1 and see that one of the options for the upcoming 2010 is a SRAM Force gruppo - I think I'm sold!

I've also thought of one of those Kuota knock-off frames from ebay with a Force gruppo, which with a wheelset would be in the same ballpark as the S1.

I'm still leaning towards the S1 because of it's remarkable history and proven success. Plus I'm a little scared of crashing on a CF bike.
 

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I don't think most dental plans cover chipped teeth caused as the result of the chattering ride of AL. You might want to check that out before pulling the trigger. Got rid of my Cannondale a while back and my teeth are looking much better these days. :D
 
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