/ Better buy - carbon frame or high-end components?

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gmico on 29 Dec 2012
Evening!

Found a couple of hardtail MTB bargains but unsure which is the better buy - carbon frame with ok components or aluminium frame with top notch components?

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=75456

or http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=75496

Any experts out there?

mr rob - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico:

I wouldn't pay much attention to the RRP on those, just silly money for what they seem to be.

Descriptions show the same weight for the bike, only reason I can see for getting carbon is lower weight

What are you going to be riding mainly?
gmico on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to mr rob:

Carbon is stiffer tho isn't it? Is it likely that the lower spec components disguise the true weight of the frame?

I have a cx bike which is great, but want to mix it up a bit more...

I'll be riding XC trails mostly, enjoy going uphill but want to go downhill faster than I can at the mo ;)
brokenbanjo - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico:

I got a high-end Hardtail in September. Whilst in the shop the sales monkey tried to sell me a carbon framed bike. I asked what happens when a rock jumps out and hits your frame, will it dent or crack? He said it depends. I said that it was not good enough. Think of it this way, you could be out on your first ride and you clip a rock/tree. An Alu bike you'll pick up and ride again, a carbon one may well be broken and you have to buy a new bike.

I got this in the end after visiting my local bike shops. It may be Evans own brand, but I love it. It rides really well and has taken a fair few tumbles.

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/pinnacle/iroko-two-2012-mountain-bike-ec035900
mr rob - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico:

Depends on the frame, impossible to tell from a picture

Either will make you go downhill faster than the CX bike, I can not even compare mine

Easier to upgrade components than a frame though

Always best to ride first, which you will find tough buying online

mr rob - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to brokenbanjo:

http://www.pinkbike.com/video/243228/

Carbon Vs Ally (on a good brand!)
johnj on 29 Dec 2012 - 86.112.78.158 whois?
In reply to mr rob:

That's good example, a must watch for any biker really, there's a reason they build F1 cars and all other top end stuff out of carbon fibre.
brokenbanjo - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to mr rob:

On a good brand, that carbon frame is what, £2k by itself? I would say all weaves are different and cheaper ones may begin to delaminate earlier? Plus the mode of failure, at least with plastic deformation your chance of being impaled on your bike is less.
highclimber - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico: you seemed to have overlooked the obvious alternative - Steel!
papashango - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico:

As highclimber said, steel is a great alternative!!

Bomb proof, and a fraction of the price of Ti. I got a Rock Lobster from Merlin cycles about 5 years ago, full XT components, Fox 32 forks and raceface finishing bits for under a grand. It's still running perfectly. I don't think you get the same level of components anymore but they'll defo be much better than an equivalently priced Ti framed bike!
quirky - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to brokenbanjo: Ah the urban myth of carbon fibre. it is not tissue paper!! they build F1 cars and fighter aircraft out of it for a reason!!
wbo - on 29 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico: Another question is 'how tall are you'. Carbon can be stiffer, depending on how it's built and orientated. Al will be stiff period. I'm quite short and would always pick carbon of the two as for me Al makes for just a stiff, dead lump of a frame.

I would also pick carbon as I believe that the lifespan of a carbon frame is likely longer than that of an Al frame. That stuff above about dinging a carbon frame first ride out - well it happens plenty with Al frames, drop them and the ultra thin tubes buckle and crimp if they hit anything.

I personally ride steel, but of those two would pick the Corratec everytime. Plus it's easier to change all the parts than the frame.
Flatus Vetus - on 29 Dec 2012
dissonance - on 30 Dec 2012
In reply to quirky:
> (In reply to brokenbanjo) Ah the urban myth of carbon fibre. it is not tissue paper!! they build F1 cars and fighter aircraft out of it for a reason!!

yes but they tend to have rather larger budgets including replacement parts though plus if a fighter hits something at any speed i suspect the material is secondary.

For OP, leaving specific aside as others have mentioned general advice is a good frame first since then you can replace components as needed and more importantly, again as mentioned, how it rides wins.
Lee Proctor - on 30 Dec 2012
I got a Santa Cruz LTC in June (a carbon full suspension 29er) and having ridden it hard for the rest of the year I can honestly say that after my wife's wedding ring and the dog its the best thing I've ever bought!
martinph78 on 31 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico: I can't comment on either of those bikes as I'm not up-to-date with the latest specs etc, but I agree with the "buy the best frame that you can and you can upgrade the components later" statement.

Although I reckon you could actually buy a frame and build-it up yourself for that sort of money...I've just ordered some stuff from CRC, their sale is amazing IF you aren't too picky and go for older components (still high quality, just 2010-2012 gear).

If I was after a new bike I'd be starting from scratch.

Built mine around a Ti hardtail frame and love it. Personally I didn't want to start with a carbon or aluminium frame as I found them both too stiff/harsh. Mine does hills well but still retains comfort.

Bet you could have great fun building a £1000 bike from scratch in the sales!
mark s - on 31 Dec 2012
In reply to mr rob:
> (In reply to brokenbanjo)
>
> http://www.pinkbike.com/video/243228/
>
> Carbon Vs Ally (on a good brand!)

that is pretty conclusive in my eyes.
ads.ukclimbing.com
TimB - on 31 Dec 2012
In reply to gmico:

Not really an expert but...

Although the weight and price are the same, if you look at the geometry tables for both bikes the Corratec has a slightly longer effective top tube, slightly shorter head tube and slightly steeper head angle.

So the Corratec is more a race bike, suited for shorter, head-down fast-as-possible outings (and probably designed for power transfer above comfort)
and the Beone is a bit more trail-bike (slightly more stable on the downs, slightly more relaxed position for comfort on longer outings).

I'd buy the BeOne. The forks, brakes and drivetrain are much better and a bit more up to date (not really sure about the Manitou fork - but I bet you can get rebas serviced and fixed more easily and cheaper! Also, it looks like the BeOne has a tapered head tube but the Corratec doesn't - suggests an older design for the Corratec). That way you've got a bike that can do anything and is light enough to race, instead of a race bike with heavy components.

I bet you're going to reply saying you've bought the Corratec now aren't you!

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