In the core of every bike, there is a frame, and these frames can have a different effect on the bike depending on which alloy or metal you use. London cyclist states that most of the bikes in the world are made out of alloys like titanium, steel, carbon fiber, and aluminum. For this project, I choose to research about titanium and aluminum, and I also choose my bike to be road bikes. I also wanted to see which materials were better and I also wanted to see the pros and cons of each material. Road bikes are typically made out of carbon or aluminum due to the fact that they re both very light, which means that the bikes can travel at a very high speed. I chose these to alloys because they are most commonly used to make road bikes and bikes dedicated to a bumpy road. Both aluminum and titanium have pros and cons to it. I also had to take in consideration about the safety reasons, economic reasons, and accessibility.
Aluminum was first introduced into the world of bikes in 1895. But, it didn’t come into wide use until the 1980s when large-diameter tubing was conceived and construction processes were perfected. Aluminium frames are mainly used for road bikes, but can also be used in everyday bikes as well. According to Citybikes, aluminum is known to be very light, even lighter than carbon and titanium. And unlike steel, aluminum does not rust. Aluminum is also known to absorb shock, providing excellence and comfort on the rough rodes.
But, because it was one of the first alloys to be used, doesn’t mean aluminum is the best. Bike Forums has stated that aluminum bikes tend to last from a range of 2-5 years max and is really tough on the body, therefore, aluminum bikes should only be used by experienced racers. Eventually, cracks will also start forming on the bike, and if not noticeable, this can cause serious injury to the rider.
My second option for metals is titanium. Titanium is known to be one of the most longs lasting, strongest and the most expensive frame material. When it comes to weight, its main rival is aluminum, but it is more comfortable than steel. According to Citybikes, the frames feel “alive” as if each pedal stroke gets a boost from an inherent springiness in the frame. There are 2 types of titanium that are normally used, which is the 3Al/2.5V and 6Al/4V, and 6AL/4V is known to be the lighter, more expensive titanium. But both alloys of titanium could be combined to make one frame.
But there are also drawbacks on titanium. Titanium is also known to be one of the most expensive frames to make, this is because it requires expensive welding rod, and it must be joined carefully in a controlled environment. Titanium frames are also very expensive to produce which also explains why they are so expensive.
In conclusion, I think that I would use aluminum for my material for road bikes. Titanium may last longer and maybe the strongest, but road bikes to be very light, and also has to be able to have speed. Alumiun is known to be lighter than all metals which means that it can also go faster. Aluminum is also one of the most used materials to make road bikes which mean that the material also has a long amount of history with it.
“Almost There!” Bike Forums RSS, www.bikeforums.net/road-cycling/180214-how-bad-all-aluminum-bikes.html.
“Road Bike Materials.” Road Bike Materials – City Bikes, citybikes.com/articles/road-bike-materials-pg57.htm.
“What Is Your Bike Made of? Bike Frame Materials and Their Properties.” London Cyclist, 6 Dec. 2013, www.londoncyclist.co.uk/bike-made/.