Commentary--being a weight weenie

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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gandini
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by gandini

The recent completion of Superlite's road bike has made me think about what it means to be a weight weenie. I, like most others on this forum, have followed his progress from "dreams" to a wish list (that weighed about 12 lbs) to the reality of a 16lb bike centered around the incredible Scott CR-1 Limited frame, decorated with selections from the top shelf of Shimano and Ritchey. The fact that most of his 1700+ posts on this forum centered around the lightest equipment makes him a true weight weenie--someone we can really admire. And I do. But a large proportion of his posts, and those of others, focus on "bad" weight weenied decisions--such as using cranks that require ISIS bottom brackets, and sew-ups/tubulars rather than the more practical clinchers.
All this made me think about the "true" weight-weenie--who is this person, and what do they choose in a bicycle and its components?
The answer is found by asking Cristian Frisoni, or Sicco Derks--these people take no prisoners, make no compromises! A real weight weenie doesn't think--what if I get a puncture in my 110gm sewup while 20km from home? (this happened to me on my News Years Day resolution ride--I used a cell phone to call my wife to come get me!) A real weight weenie doesn't worry about bearings wearing after 100km, or 10 km--you just order a new replacement or complete unit, especially if it's lighter than the one you just wore out. A real weight weenie doesn't care about dehydration, or carrying 3 CO2 cartridges and a pump that fits in a jersey pocket that can't even get it up to 100psi. A true weight weenie replaces tires, not repairs them, he chooses aluminum alloys over titanium not because they are stronger, but because they are lighter. A true weight weenie has more parts in the "tried it, didn't like it" bin than the ebay bin.
So what about the rest of us? We make compromises for many reasons. We have financial constraints and aren't willing to get into debt to fund the habit. We worry that some ultra-light parts will break in use. We end up convincing ourselves that these compromises are "the best" or "right" when in fact they are just admissions of our own inadequacies, our own failures to embrace true weight weenie-ism. A true WW does not compromise. There are no compromises. All the arguements you want to throw against sewups, against drilled titanium bolts and against 108gm bottom brackets, are in the end just self-serving justifications for your unwillingness to go the last mile.
I would love to have seen Superlite turn that gorgeous CR-1 Limited frame into an inspiring 12lb bike. As is it, he fell 4 lbs short.
Oh well, I'll don my flame suit now...

regards,
gandini

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Superlite
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by Superlite

I would love to have seen Superlite turn that gorgeous CR-1 Limited frame into an inspiring 122lb bike. As is it, he fell 4 lbs short.
Oh well, I'll don my flame suit now...


So are you posting because you can't bare the thought of my CR1 Limited weighing 7000g? :lol: joke

This thread is gonna get a few interesting responses, let me start. :wink:

I dissagree about what definition you use as a "true" weight weenie. You say that "they" make no compromises to save weight, but in reality to save weight, esp on 12lb bikes you are making comprimises all the time. 900g wheels you comprimise lateral stiffness, 130g bar, you comprimise stiffness, etc.....

There is a point, at which being a "true" weight weenie comprimises your ride. At that point the performace gained by saving weight is grossly out weighed by the losses of efficiency from lack of stiffness and transfer of power. At that point the bike will become "stupid light."

So when you see my bike weighing 7000g it is not because I don't want it lighter ( although I do :D ), or that I can't get the components I want ( at the moment I can't anyways :cry: ), it is because I beleive that I couldn't make my bike and better by reducing it's weight. I'm sure a lot of people would dissagree with that, but hey, everyone has their own.

by Weenie


2002SaecoReplica
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by 2002SaecoReplica

It is very easy to make a 12 bike if you have/care about two things.

A) you have 10,000 dollars and can afford to buy lightweight wheels, a seperate frame, and a build kit and build the thing up yourself. Every tried to piece together a complete bike from a catelogue? It's bloody expensive!

B) you do not care that your bike is a noodle. If it's alright that when you strand to sprint the bars wabble back and forth from the super thin bars and stem combo. That the rear wheel contacts the pads because it is so light it has no stiffness to it.

There is a point to which being light no longer matters. You can be as light as you want but if it gets to the point where your lightness cancels out being efficient then what's the point? If you are having to work harder because of the flex then you would if it were heavier and stiff then why bother being light? I answer this question almost every week from people that wonder why I chose oversized deda newton bar and stem combo over some superlight carbon combo. It's all about stiffness.

I think until you or anyone else for that matter has built a 12 pound bike for under the amount mentioned above it is best to keep ones mouth closed. Besides, even if you had a 12 pound bike I bet I could walk all over you with my 16 pound bike. Equipment can only help you so much
Last edited by 2002SaecoReplica on Wed Feb 16, 2005 6:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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gandini
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by gandini

So, Superlite is the first to respond with comment--as it should be! When I said "no compromises" I meant--to weight! You are right that to get a 12 lb bike you *must* make compromises. But not to weight. You can be a stiffness weenie, a comfort weenie, a bash it until it breaks weenie, but in the end, we're all here because of our interest in weight. I was once, in the early 80s, an "aero weenie." I designed and built a bike that was an incredible time trial bike with all the known aero tricks at the time, but it broke at the bottom bracket while climbing a severe hill in Perth, Western Australia. I have made compromises, and survived.
But in the end a weight weenie is a zealot, following a prophet that speaks only of low mass.
My Grace seat and post is near completion, apparently. So I decide to put my Scandioum ISIS BB back in my bike--without the sleeve. A whopping 12g saved. Why the shell not...I say!

keep it (super) light.
cheers,

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Superlite
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by Superlite


2002SaecoReplica wrote

There is a point to which being light no longer matters. You can be as light as you want but if it gets to the point where your lightness cancels out being efficient then what's the point? If you are having to work harder because of the flex then you would if it were heavier and stiff then why bother being light? I answer this question almost every week from people that wonder why I chose oversized deda newton bar and stem combo over some superlight carbon combo. It's all about stiffness.


:thumbup: but, isn't that what I just said? :wink:


I think until you or anyone else for that matter has built a 12 pound bike for under the amount mentioned above it is best to keep ones mouth closed. Besides, even if you had a 14 pound bike I bet I could walk all over you with my 16 pound bike. Equipment can only help you so much


Exactly 8)

gandini wrote
So, Superlite is the first to respond with comment--as it should be! When I said "no compromises" I meant--to weight! You are right that to get a 12 lb bike you *must* make compromises. But not to weight. You can be a stiffness weenie, a comfort weenie, a bash it until it breaks weenie, but in the end, we're all here because of our interest in weight. I was once, in the early 80s, an "aero weenie." I designed and built a bike that was an incredible time trial bike with all the known aero tricks at the time, but it broke at the bottom bracket while climbing a severe hill in Perth, Western Australia. I have made compromises, and survived.
But in the end a weight weenie is a zealot, following a prophet that speaks only of low mass.
My Grace seat and post is near completion, apparently. So I decide to put my Scandioum ISIS BB back in my bike--without the sleeve. A whopping 12g saved. Why the shell not...I say!

keep it (super) light.
cheers,


I hear what you are saying, but I still don't fully agree on what your saying about what define a true weight weenie.

Scandium ISIS, uh oh. Don't risk it. Can you say stupid light? Not dissing on your bike, but using that part really is not worth taking the risk, but then again, your are trying to be a true weight weeine. :wink:

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gandini
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by gandini

To 2002SaecoReplica: If you'd checked the light road bikes you'd see that mine is near 13 lbs as posted, but is now sub-13. And it's a daily commuter, with close calls from drivers who "didn't see me," from pot holes, from curbs, road and rail crossings, and rain, snow and mud. So I won't keep my mouth closed. Mine was a commentary--my view. You choose stiffness and durablity over weight--hang out on the stiffness weenie website. I'm getting tired of people criticizing weight weenies for choosing 900gm wheel sets because they are noodles. So be it! One day they will be stiffer. My 1100gm carbon wheelset is as durable as I need it to be--to get me to work and back 90minures every day. And I don't even think I'm a true weight weenie--my bike could be much lighter for less expenditure. And that brings me to your first point. You don't need anywhere near USD10k to get a 13lb these days. A little more than half of that at internet retial prices (not employee discount,) will do it.
OK,

2002SaecoReplica
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by 2002SaecoReplica

Instead of removing that sleave from your BB you could just put 12 less mL of water in your water bottle... :roll:
- Zipp rims will break if you look at them too hard
- R-Sys wheels will spontaneously explode
- The ZG crankset will never, ever exist
- Everyone needs Lightweights, even if they're fat and old
- Parts actually made of metal are SO 10 years ago

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Superlite
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by Superlite

Instead of removing that sleave from your BB you could just put 12 less mL of water in your water bottle...


He wouldn't be a true weight weenie then. :twinkle:

Just poking some fun at you. :wink:

2002SaecoReplica
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by 2002SaecoReplica

Frankly this whole "commentary" is very out of line. I don't quite understand why Gandini feels like he needs to berate Superlight for the way his bike turned out. Not all of us have the same goals in the direction we go with our bike builds. We all make various choices based off of weight and other important factors. Perhaps Gandini is upset that Superlight chose to be different?
- Zipp rims will break if you look at them too hard
- R-Sys wheels will spontaneously explode
- The ZG crankset will never, ever exist
- Everyone needs Lightweights, even if they're fat and old
- Parts actually made of metal are SO 10 years ago

nikh
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Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2003 8:05 pm

by nikh

brianwchan wrote:Double post?



Fixed it :)
PLAY DARTS! *WARNING* MUST HAVE A SENSE OF HUMOR TO PLAY!!!

big fellow
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by big fellow

2002SaecoReplica wrote:Frankly this whole "commentary" is very out of line. I don't quite understand why Gandini feels like he needs to berate Superlight for the way his bike turned out. Not all of us have the same goals in the direction we go with our bike builds. We all make various choices based off of weight and other important factors. Perhaps Gandini is upset that Superlight chose to be different?


I don't think he was berating him, it seemed to me to be just an observational comment.

I agree with SL that virtually every member on this forum will have a different opinion, and that's what makes it awesome :wink:

From my perspective, I agree with previous posts that WWism is affected by a few factors:

1) Price - no doubt that the good stuff is expensive, and so it should be. If you want quality and products pushing the envelope you pay for it - period.

2) Functionality - previous posters covered this nicely, stiff vs light etc

3) Rider Weight - why this? Bec I am one of those big fellas :D I know that I can never use some of the lightest parts to make my bike lighter as they are limited to certain weight restrictions. Sigh - take the next best component and move on!

4) Equipment favourites - some riders will only use campy, others only shimano, some peope will not use carbon parts, etc etc. As an example, I have a pathological fear of using tubular wheels and you will never ever see me on a pair of LW wheels :cry: :cry:

Just a few thoughts....cheers

zakeen
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by zakeen

So does that mean because I own a 6.8kg bike, I am not a weight weenie??? :cry: :cry: :cry:

but I have to have a 6.8kg bike! its the rules......UCI rules......

My whole life I have only wanted to be a true weight weenie, and to this day I thought I was...... :cry: my life dreams have just been crushed, spat on and burned to the ground.

I guess I dont belong here anymore :roll:

its ok...... I might find another site...... maybe www.fatbikeweenies.com .... where all the 6.8kg fat bikes belong.

big fellow
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by big fellow

it's OK zakeen, we are all friends here

united by our communal love of bikes, irrespective of weight

group hug


HUG

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Luc
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by Luc

come back, Zak' !

pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeezzzz...

:roll:
Pollice verso.

by Weenie


zakeen
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by zakeen

Really? :roll: I can still be here with my fat bike? :( you are really my friends :)

I have friends! :D

thanks

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