Titanium longevity

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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chazzawoods
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Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:28 pm

by chazzawoods

Life time warranty you say? i'd get on to lemond about that one, they can't ignore something like that.

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Wingnut
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Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:41 am

by Wingnut

I'm fairly sure Merlin/Spectrum Cycles made the first prototypes in the early 90's then Litespeed took over production...then once TREK became involved the production was moved in house...

So I gather it depends on what year the frame was made?
"It's not the destination...it's the ride!"

by Weenie


socratease
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by socratease

Longevity for titanium frames should be somewhere in between that of steel and aluminum. Aluminum does not have a fatigue limit, whereas steel and titanium do. Anecdotally, steel springs very rarely brake, although ones in Fox forks, or sram red rear derailers do.

The thing that makes titanium a very difficult material to work with is that it must be welded in an argon purge chamber. A long held belief by US titanium manufacturers is that Ti welds very similarly to stainless, where you can use a second shielding cup of argon. Welds produced in this way will lack strength, but the main problem is that they will be more brittle than the base metal, causing stress risers.

Most Ti frames I have seen crack are at the seams. Likely in these instances, when seaming the tubing, the weld environment wasn't adequately purged.

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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

The Litespeed looks like a seam crack, which given I believe they use 6/4 Ti makes sense.

Ti frames using 3/2.5 generally don't have seams (CWSR draw tubes) so any cracks I've seen are from a run of a contaminating agent/substance through the tube. And damn rare.

ticou
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by ticou

You can have molds, you can have machine made, but nothing beats the learnt-from-dad- artisan ( or maestro) hand built frame builder. They kinda know dem welds. So far, me artisan has served me well.

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wilson78
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by wilson78

Lemond is ( or rather was !) 3/2.5 Reynolds tubing, for those with an interest in the vagaries of different Ti builds.

As for Trek, they've come back and offered a 5 series Madone to replace it with, decisions, decisions...
My Titanium Lemond (RIP):
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=84352" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
The Trek:
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=109635

Tug Boat
Posts: 196
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 3:09 pm

by Tug Boat

socratease wrote:Longevity for titanium frames should be somewhere in between that of steel and aluminum. Aluminum does not have a fatigue limit, whereas steel and titanium do. Anecdotally, steel springs very rarely brake, although ones in Fox forks, or sram red rear derailers do.


It's been a while since I took my materials class in undergrad, but I believe aluminum does have a fatigue limit, where steel and titanium do not. Might want to check that.

TB

gabriel959
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Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2012 12:02 pm

by gabriel959

wilson78 wrote:Lemond is ( or rather was !) 3/2.5 Reynolds tubing, for those with an interest in the vagaries of different Ti builds.

As for Trek, they've come back and offered a 5 series Madone to replace it with, decisions, decisions...


If you love Ti, just get the frame and sell it but I am not sure you will make more than £1k on it on the second hand market. Mind you that should provide you most of your budget for a decent Ti frame.

maxxevv
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Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2005 4:51 am

by maxxevv

Tug Boat wrote:
socratease wrote:Longevity for titanium frames should be somewhere in between that of steel and aluminum. Aluminum does not have a fatigue limit, whereas steel and titanium do. Anecdotally, steel springs very rarely brake, although ones in Fox forks, or sram red rear derailers do.


It's been a while since I took my materials class in undergrad, but I believe aluminum does have a fatigue limit, where steel and titanium do not. Might want to check that.

TB


That's not completely correct.

Steel and Titanium also suffer from fatigue failure. The difference for them and Aluminium is that for fatigue to set in, the stress has to be over a certain threshold value. Whereas for aluminium, no such threshold value (that's actually practically useful) exists.

Thus, for steel and Ti, they still can fail if they are designed badly or build badly, resulting in stress risers that are above these threshold values in normal riding, resulting eventual failure.

Franklin
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by Franklin

*Pedantic mode*

In fact Steel and Titanium also have material fatigue with cyclical load under the so called stress treshold. They are just much, much more resistant.

Bathias, C. (1999). "There is no infinite fatigue life in metallic materials". Fatigue & Fracture of Engineering Materials & Structures 22

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wilson78
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by wilson78

gabriel959 wrote:If you love Ti, just get the frame and sell it but I am not sure you will make more than £1k on it on the second hand market. Mind you that should provide you most of your budget for a decent Ti frame.

Decided to go with a Madone in the end and will see how i get on with it. If i dont like it then it will be heading for the classifieds very quickly!
Paid a small upgrade cost to take the 2013 over the 2012, which was offered FOC. Depending on how it builds up i may well stick it in the introduce yourself section, although only if it comes out well, as its unlikely to generate much interest - Madones being something of a clitoris bike!
Its this frame, due sometime in November.
Image
My Titanium Lemond (RIP):
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=84352" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
The Trek:
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=109635

cloudnine
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:04 pm

by cloudnine

Titanium is not as strong and invincible as many of us are lead to believe. But yet to this day I still crave the road feeling of a titanium frame.

This is my old titanium mtb frame.. I was noticing the frame flexing while I was going down some trails didn't stop to take a look, later the chain dropped but it was getting dark so managed to ride back home and to my horror I saw these two cracks.

So I ask one of the aircraft mechanics at my air base if they could fix it, he said he could do it with his eyes closed.

It came out so much better than I expected, he reminded me that he repairs F16's for a living. I gave him two cases of beer as form of payment :lol: :beerchug:

Before:
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After:
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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

cloudnine wrote:Titanium is not as strong and invincible as many of us are lead to believe

Who is telling you it's invincible?

cloudnine
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Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:04 pm

by cloudnine

Quoting the post above is not required.


The marketing bs creating the impression of being resistant to corrosion, fatigue and so forth thus making them last a lifetime. Make no mistake I was led to believe that once too, but as you see from the pictures I was quickly taught otherwise.
I was riding my Storck one day and had a chap come up to me and compliment my bike, but then he said it wouldn't last like his ti bike. He also mentioned carbon frames tending to spontaneously fail. I just laughed and rode off, what i'm saying is there's a belief in some of the cycling community (at least in Thailand) that titanium frames are impervious to all the problems other frame materials tend to have. I've even heard such stupid comments like "Don't ride your carbon bike in the rain!" I could never get a legitimate reason from them as to why I shouldn't ride my bike in the rain.

Image

by Weenie


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Tinea Pedis
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Location: Geelong
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by Tinea Pedis

But your bike had a crack, not corrosion?

The chaps point about the way in which carbon fibre bikes tend to fail is also relevant and true (when compared to how an alloy frame fails).


As for the marketing from Seven, do they offer a lifetime warranty on their frames? If so I guess it would mean you will have it for life :lol: if not, then that screen capture makes for some handy evidence for owners out there.


One last thing, how many carbon fibre frames could a F16 aviation mechanic fix for 2 slabs of beer? :wink: when something does go wrong with Ti, the fix tends to be a hell of a lot cheaper.

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