This is total BS! Subtle tube variations make a huge difference - just switch a Columbus downtube and chainstays from SL to SP and the ride really is altered. Similarly, last year we were playing with Waterford 2200's and we had three made with different tube specs. The first variation was two bikes each identical except for a heavier spec downtube. The difference there was not perceptible - perhaps because the heavy and light tubes, if each tube varied in in their tolerance limits, they could be virtually identical in gauge. A bad test. Then we did heavier downtube AND chainstays and BAM! - the bike had a much stiffer rear end - so stiff in fact that the bike was not, in my opinion, nearly as pleasant as the stock chainstay model. Ideally we'd have gone to an "in-between" gauge chainstay and split the difference.
Many people can't tell the difference between a tube that is too heavy and one that is too light - spring helps a bike accelerate - but so does stiffness perhaps - confused? Yes - it is confusing. Its all about the right balance for each rider. Need spring but not too much.
Mike Kone in Boulder CO
At 02:59 PM 5/31/02 EDT, Gjvinbikes@aol.com wrote:
>In a message dated 5/31/02 2:12:12 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
>> Hi all. I spoke with a local frame builder about this a while back, and
>> he reported the results of a very interesting "blind" study done at
>> Cornell with the Cornell cycling team,
>If I accept the conclusions one would tend to draw from this blind test, I
>have to toss out my personal impressions which are the result of years of
>riding a large variety of different bikes made of different materials. But,
>my conclusions are biased, perhaps, by the nature of my testing - whereas the
>Cornell tests are "blind", which is significant.
>Since exotic tubing sets are more expensive than "HiTen gaspipe" tubings,
>isn't there a real opportunity for some enterprising framebuilder, or
>company, to lower costs dramatically by using the cheaper tubing and applying
>his craftsmanship towards building the best bike possible with the cheaper
>components ? Pass some of this cost savings on to customers and keep some for
>extra marginal profitability.
>Why do the list's framebuilders, who MonkeyLad points out agree more or less
>with him that the tubing grade is not significant to the ride quality
>(compared to other factors) all use butted special tubings, despite the extra
>materials costs ?
>Glenn Jordan - Durham, NC