Titanium bolts as alternative gram saver?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
PuroScattista
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Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 7:10 pm

by PuroScattista

So I've heard and seen some debates in the past regarding the move to Ti bolts for the bike, and vice versa for not going that route. Some say Ti bolts are not recommended at all, structurally not as sound as the stainless steel bolts and some say it's even stronger, etc.... I'm curious to see/hear what your guys are feeling about regarding making a move to Ti bolts to help lighten up the bike even more. Also- if you have made the jump to Ti, what company did you source from and verify your correct dimensions to swap. Thanks in advance and hope this does not turn into a heated debate between both parties on the subject (puts flame suit on just incase)


drainyoo
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by drainyoo

A lot of components, especially stems, large brands come equipped with Ti bolts. I've used products with them and have had no issues.

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Rick
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by Rick

A good, high quality Ti bolt CAN be stronger than most steel ones, but there is no guarantee unless you buy from a reputable source. I have had Ti bolts break before, but never after I started buying from Pro-Bolt.

Also, they don't really save much and are expensive, so don't think they are really going to affect performance detectably.

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mpulsiv
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by mpulsiv

Yes, www.tekbolt.com is reputable source for titanium needs. Here's the info about titanium in layman's terms:

In very general terms, titanium bolts are slightly stronger than steel (at about 1/2 the weight). Also, ti is not "soft" as much as "springy" (in engineering terms its got a low modulus of elasticity, meaning it deforms easily but springs back to shape). Weak grades of steel screws, like most phillips head screws, have a strength of about 400 MPa, while most good allen head steel screws are 800 MPa. Aircraft grade titanium like we use is 900 MPa. To make the matter more confusing, there are grades of ti with only 350 MPa strength and grades of steel with 1200 MPa strength. Don't worry though, with bicycles you will almost always be replacing 800 MPa steel with 900 Mpa ti.
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:arrow: CBA = Chronic Bike Addiction
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eric
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by eric

@mpulsiv- what alloy are ti bicycle bolts typically made from? 6-4?

From what I have read Ti is more susceptible to cracking and galling. That hasn't kept me from using them. Just make sure they're lubed. One of my bikes has DA 7800 brakes that I replaced the steel parts with Ti ones, from toronto cycle. Saved about 30g with no change in brake function or feel. The EE brakes on the other bike come with Ti bolts.

As for verifying dimensions its best to measure things yourself.

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mpulsiv
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by mpulsiv

No need to quote above

My Ti bolts have been holding up. I use 1 M6x55 bolt for my Ritchey seatpost, which was 1/2 weight of stock steel.
Reach out to Brian for specific questions about Ti tekbolt@gmail.com
Racing is a three-dimensional high-speed chess game, involving hundreds of pieces on the board.

:arrow: CBA = Chronic Bike Addiction
:arrow: OCD = Obsessive Cycling Disorder

PuroScattista
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Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 7:10 pm

by PuroScattista

this is where i still am on the fence. (read above posts about pros/cons..._) I will keep reading and keep watching to help decide

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mpulsiv
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by mpulsiv

Where do you plan to replace steel bolts with Ti? Stem bolts? water cage bolts? seatpost bolt(s), skewers?
1 Ti bolt on my seatpost support my body weight, that's a lot of stress and flex. Anything else on your bike is negligible except for skewers.
Racing is a three-dimensional high-speed chess game, involving hundreds of pieces on the board.

:arrow: CBA = Chronic Bike Addiction
:arrow: OCD = Obsessive Cycling Disorder

PuroScattista
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Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 7:10 pm

by PuroScattista

great question. My initial plan was to just swap all bolts available on my future bike build. This one would be clearly an all out gram saving effort. Appreciate the input! Good to hear that possibly all other areas would be negligible otherwise.

bm0p700f
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by bm0p700f

I use to bolts everywhere I can but it does not save much weight either. Never had a problem with them. A lot of mine came from Toronto cycles

PoorCyclist
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Location: California's country side

by PoorCyclist

4 times the price
1/2 to 2/3 the weight

perfect cyclist economics! :D

I really like the corrosion resistance but you can round off the head if you are not careful or if your tools is a bit worn ( especially the 4mm one for stems ) . Never use a ball end on it.

supermidget
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Joined: Sun Jun 01, 2014 1:56 am

by supermidget

Replaced bottle cage bolts with titanium ones for a very very minimal weight savings but am hesitant to use them in more critical areas.

mike
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by mike

ti bolts really do not save weight unless it is a very large bolt (i.e. quill stems). the alloy bolts for bottle cages will be lightner than ti bolts already and many steel bolts like dura ace are hollowed out already.

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mpulsiv
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by mpulsiv

supermidget wrote:Replaced bottle cage bolts with titanium ones for a very very minimal weight savings but am hesitant to use them in more critical areas.


Titanium bolts is used on motorcycles and we fear to use them on bikes? What do consider a critical area on a bike besides skewers?

6 stem M5 bolts | steel = 20 grams | titanium = 13 grams
1 M6x55 bolt (for Ritchey WCS 1-bolt seatpost) | steel = 14 grams | titanium = 7 grams
4 bottle cage bolts | steel = 12 grams | titanium = 5 grams
Racing is a three-dimensional high-speed chess game, involving hundreds of pieces on the board.

:arrow: CBA = Chronic Bike Addiction
:arrow: OCD = Obsessive Cycling Disorder

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