New bike dilemma - Steel/Electronic vs Ti/Mechanical

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
solarider
Posts: 490
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:08 pm

by solarider

Firstly, the answer to the following is not 'buy a carbon bike'. I want custom geometry because I want a high front end, level top tube and a few tweaks here and there. I prefer metal bikes. Nor is it 'disc brakes are rubbish'. So, with that in mind.....

Steel
I am looking at either an Independent Fabrication Crown Jewel or Seven Axiom Steel with disc brakes.

Titanium
I am looking at a Seven Axiom SL, again with disc brakes.

Because of an existing parts bin, I can go for either of the steel frames with Record EPS, or the titanium frame with Chorus mechanical for roughly the same price (the titanium version would be only slightly more expensive).

The advantage of the steel option is that it will be future proofed. I predict that electronic shifting will become more prevalent, and although I will be running mechanical disc brakes for now I predict that eventually when hydraulics launch they will launch first with electronic shifting because of the space in the lever body. I should add that I don't want to run SRAM, who I know offer (or will again soon!) mechanical shifting with hydraulic brakes.

The advantage of the titanium option is the ride quality, weight and 'bike for life' approach. The disadvantage being the mechanical shifting and braking now vs electronic and the option of hydraulics when they eventually launch.

In terms of ride quality, there isn't much to choose. I will ride the bike in all weathers, so ti has a slight advantage, but well built quality steel treated with framesaver won't be too much of a problem.

I know that the frame, fork and the wheels are the most important part of the bike. Both bikes would use the same wheels and forks (Wound Up disc road). Only the frame would differ, and either choice isn't bad. I run EPS on my other bikes, and whilst it is nice, I also still have mechanical on a couple of bikes as well, and it doesn't feel like old tech.

So, which to choose? Any thoughts much appreciated.

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jrobart
Posts: 153
Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:25 pm
Location: MA

by jrobart

Interesting question. I would go Ti, but that's as far as I can go with my recommendation.

I have a Seven Axiom SL with a mix of mechanical Super Record, Record and Chorus and absolutely love it. I also just bought a new Mudhoney SL with Athena EPS and disc brakes. It is a magic carpet ride (to steel a phrase) with sublime shifting. Wholeheartedly agree with the no carbon approach as my third Seven (I know, I have too many) is a carbon Diamas SL, and while it is a great bike, it doesn't compare with the ride quality of either of the Ti frames.

Once you go Ti you'll never go back!
The Stable http://www.flickr.com/photos/121194764@N07/albums

622 SLX | Axiom SL | Mudhoney SL (retired) | S Works Crux | Fondriest Carbon Magister | Fat CAAD 1

by Weenie


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jrobart
Posts: 153
Joined: Wed Sep 29, 2010 4:25 pm
Location: MA

by jrobart

Sola, just realized that you were the original poster. So you know about the benefits of Ti better than anyone. IF makes great frames, but I'm a Seven guy at heart, so I'm a bit biased.
The Stable http://www.flickr.com/photos/121194764@N07/albums

622 SLX | Axiom SL | Mudhoney SL (retired) | S Works Crux | Fondriest Carbon Magister | Fat CAAD 1

solarider
Posts: 490
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:08 pm

by solarider

Thanks. Seven steel is still an option......

Any piccies of the new Mudhoney?

shimmeD
Posts: 356
Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:52 pm
Location: eNZed

by shimmeD

I vote steel and a happy customer's recommendation to check out English
http://www.englishcycles.com/custombike ... -disc-eps/
http://www.englishcycles.com/news/16-march-2014/
Less is more.

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willieboy
Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 2:58 am

by willieboy

Ti all the way! With Chorus, SWEET!

shimmeD
Posts: 356
Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2012 10:52 pm
Location: eNZed

by shimmeD

OK, ti if you have the $, fe if you want bang for buck.
I vote steel :beerchug:
Less is more.

Butcher
Shop Owner
Posts: 821
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:58 am

by Butcher

EPS all the way, no finicky shifting. I have had SR and Chorus mechanical, now SR and Athena EPS, no more issues anymore.

mike
Resident Pro
Posts: 2420
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 9:42 pm

by mike

go with seven ti, with ultegra/dura ace di2 mix and match.

solarider
Posts: 490
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:08 pm

by solarider

The choice is steel with electronic Campagnolo or titanium with mechanical Campagnolo.

Veering towards the ride and longevity of titanium.

Guinea
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:18 pm

by Guinea

I chose titanium and chorus.

I'm not having a lot of joy with the disc brakes though. There is not enough cable pull on the levers with Campangnolo leading to masses of throw and poor braking performance. If you're used to MTB discs, these are not in the same league.

solarider
Posts: 490
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 9:08 pm

by solarider

I run Campagnolo with BB7s on 3 bikes. All work brilliantly. I think it is all in the set up and cable outers.

RussellS
Posts: 680
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:31 am

by RussellS

I guess I would go with the titanium bike. Just because its lighter and rust proof. And bare titanium looks OK to me. Right paint color is also good. I have all four of the frame materials and notice zero difference when riding. Picking the bikes up after the ride I notice a difference. But when riding, no difference. Also have Di2 and Campagnolo mechanical and Shimano mechanical. Not really any difference there either. All shift well and brake well.

aaric
Posts: 439
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:10 pm

by aaric

Ti...but ask them if they can do dual routing to future proof with an eye to an eventual electronic upgrade.

Dammit
Posts: 443
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2011 8:16 pm

by Dammit

No question in my mind- steel and electronic.

by Weenie


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