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Highest Quality Carbon Frames?

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by FrameJunky, Mar 29, 2019.

  1. FrameJunky

    FrameJunky Chimp

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    Which carbon frames won't explode on me? I'm 200lbs and a jumper. Snap City?

    Also, what is Crabon? I see it here all the time. Is that a new type of carbon made from crab shells and plastic?
     
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  2. rideit

    rideit Bob the Builder

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    Crabon looks flexy
     
  3. pizza diavola

    pizza diavola Monkey

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  4. HardtailHack

    HardtailHack used an iron once

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    Ahhh crap, another thread.

    Lahar is probably the best, orders take a while to process though.
     
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  5. ChrisRobin

    ChrisRobin Turbo Monkey

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    Yeah I agree with Lahar... they've been good to me and a bunch of others on here for years.
     
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  6. mtg

    mtg Green with Envy

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  7. rpet

    rpet Turbo Monkey

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    Highest Quality Ignore Button?
     
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  8. wiscodh

    wiscodh Monkey

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  9. mtg

    mtg Green with Envy

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    We’ve been finalizing the production fixtures, it’s coming ASAP.
     
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  10. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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  11. sethimus

    sethimus scroll all you want!

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    2 weeks?
     
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  12. FrameJunky

    FrameJunky Chimp

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    So many dislikes :(
     
    #12 -   Mar 31, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2019
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  13. vinny4130

    vinny4130 Monkey

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    Well, when you started this thread what did you expect? At this rate I expect you to ask who makes the best bamboo bike.
     
  14. HardtailHack

    HardtailHack used an iron once

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  15. KenW449

    KenW449 Thanos did nothing wrong

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    I can do you one better than carbon or Ti.
    Video not available anywhere but Facebook, yet.
    Screenshot_20190401-125700_Facebook.jpg
     
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  16. FrameJunky

    FrameJunky Chimp

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    Im genuinely curious about your thoughts on the difference between Santa Cruz Carbon vs Carbon C.

    Is it worth the extra $?
     
  17. Loki87

    Loki87 Monkey

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    If you consider 100 grams of weight savings worth the money, then probably yes.
    To me, it´s ridiculous.
     
  18. jstuhlman

    jstuhlman We noticed.

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    963C03FB-2472-4266-AB6E-61EB7BB6BD8B.jpeg
    here’s silly story. i got a lightly used nomad with a c front end and a cc rear end. how it happened i don’t know and didn’t ask. i couldn’t tell the difference. anyway. i have a buddy who is THE WORST on his bikes who couldn’t break a carbon nomad 3. i just mastic taped all the sensitive parts of mine and i abuse the crap out of it whenever i can. just look at it in all of its plastic beaten down middle-of-nowhere (seriously, google gragg, nc) glory!!!!
     
  19. KenW449

    KenW449 Thanos did nothing wrong

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    Santa Cruz also does free bearings for life, so i hear.
     
  20. joeg

    joeg I have some obvious biases

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    I have some obvious biases here, but I will chime in w/ this:

    1. Santa Cruz is the only MTB company I know of that has invested in their own composite manufacturing facility in Asia. We founded this composites company with partners, but since Day 1(~2012) its been our place - was completely designed to make a majority of VPP carbon bicycles frames, nobody else unless they are friends can make shit there. Other companies say they have a "company", but what they mean is an exclusive line, or building of a place that makes many others. We named it "skybox" because it sounded exclusive at the time. Later I found out thats what the Brits call a cable box.

    2. You can make good bikes at the same factory that makes shitty bikes for others. Its not easy - but it is possible. Stability of that quality is the risk if you can achieve it. There are reputable manufacturers in Asia that make carbon frames for well over 75 brands. Hard to believe much daylight gets through the cracks when you're in that. Truth is: there are few reputable carbon factories to make MTB.

    3. C v. CC carbon. For awhile, we just had one set of standards for weight, stiffness and strength. As it seemed like we were pricing ourselves out of many rider's ability to ride carbon, we figured that weight could be sacrificed for cost (in material, but also in manufacturing). C costs less to make, which lets us decrease the cost to riders. We try to keep equivalent strength and stiffness metrics between both material grades. They use the same steel curing molds, and are made at the same factory by the same people (there are other tooling and process differences).

    Monkeys love to slam SC as a dentist brand - but few realize how deep we invest in our supply chain to realize quality on behalf of our riders. We make our own composite frames and rims, we build all our bikes, build all our own wheels for every single bike we sell. All in-house.

    That shit costs.
     
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  21. HardtailHack

    HardtailHack used an iron once

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    Well there you go, nice to get some factual info on RM for once.

    So who else does their own frames? Antidote, GG, Unno and I think MSC have their own factory in Taiwan but there would have to be more.
    I'm happy with my $500 custom frame from Peru, it's 0.3% carbon. When we start recycling carbon in Australia I might get one but it seems pretty shit to throw it in to a hole in the ground when you are done with it, all my other bike bits get separated and sent to the recyclers*.

    *I had a fork with carbon lowers in maybe 2004 and have had three carbon bars, none exploded but two cracked due to poor manufacture.
     
  22. ianjenn

    ianjenn Turbo Monkey

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    Giant pretty much does EVERYONE's frames over there and I mean even the big dogs. Does Trek still do Carbon in house?
     
  23. sethimus

    sethimus scroll all you want!

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    more than a US made carbon frame
     
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  24. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    this would make a great custom title :rofl:
     
  25. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    1 - was not aware. with what GG is doing, are you feeling any pressure to on-shore your production?

    2 - this is true of manufacturing in ASPAC, regardless of the industry.
     
  26. Happymtb.fr

    Happymtb.fr Monkey

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    Orange makes its carbon frame in house. BMC in Switzerland (before 2014).

    I wonder where Forbidden bikes makes their new model?

    They are not making the session in house any longer from an article on Pinkbike
     
    #26 -   Apr 2, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
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  27. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    I really don't care who makes it, I care about the control they have over the process. Just because they have Giant or whomever make it doesn't inherently mean it sucks, I care about the designers, the specs, the features, etc. Just like the wonky santa cruz's with the crazy leverage rates that are now slowly being fixed across the line. Good on SC for addressing that finally, but it just goes to show that just because you own the process doesn't make the frame/bike a unicorn. SC has become a "major" brand IMO after starting boutique, that's great and I'm sure it kicked out a bunch of half-ass companies fighting for market share, I'd rather SC have it than Specialized, but again, it comes down to the specific bike and frame, the pivots, the shock linkages and pins, geometry, etc.
     
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  28. joeg

    joeg I have some obvious biases

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    I really don't care who makes it, I care about the end result being consistently high quality and robust. Control, while potentially a good thing, doesn't provide any guarantee of quality.

    I'm for on-shore manufacturing if it lends itself to high quality bikes for riders within a competitive price range. Some of the listed manufacturers in this thread will have to prove their supply chain and manufacturing decisions as sustainable, if not scaleable, to meet the requirement for suspension bikes. These new business models often go consumer direct without the IBD in the value chain, which can provide a reduction in the retail price but also creates an unknown for future product support for the rider. As someone who bought an Alta Redshift from an electric motorcycle company that is now out of business - I've recently been reminded that a product warranty is only as good as the company issuing it is able to honor it.

    To the OP's question - few people on this thread know what manufacturer's test protocols, QA procedures, or manufacturing stability are. So the decision criteria would narrow to known sources of reliability (without empirical data, using peer-peer recommendations can be effective), and then looking at the after-sales support and warranty offered provides another data point to base decision upon.
     
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  29. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    this^^^. while it IS a critical element into providing high quality, it's by no means the *ONLY* element.
     
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  30. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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    i think part of this is that is also has a certain appeal to a segment of mountain bikers who still primarily do their own work, and aren't intimidated by building up a frame from parts. so in that regards, there's not a huge value loss to the end consumer by cutting out the IBD. i'd definitely agree that this segment is shrinking (for a number of reasons) but it's still large enough the consumer direct is a viable business model.
     
  31. Electric_City

    Electric_City The orangutans are loose!

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    Serious question-
    In-house in California, or in-house in China?
     
  32. Sandwich

    Sandwich Pig my fish!
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    I thought BMC's carbon was made in switzerland. That's why it's so damned expensive. Then again I have a TF01 and I'm pretty sure there's a made in china sticker on it, not that it means much. Oh also, these frames have a rep for cracking so I'm not sure the swish manufacturing matters all that much, as joge says.
     
  33. jonKranked

    jonKranked Press Button, Receive Stupid

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  34. 6thElement

    6thElement Schrodinger's Immigrant

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    Holy crap, that's from 1982, I'd have added another few onto that.

     
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  35. joeg

    joeg I have some obvious biases

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    carbon frame and rim fabrication & paint: china
    frame assembly: santa cruz, ca
    bike assembly: santa cruz, ca
    wheel assembly: santa cruz, ca
     
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  36. Jm_

    Jm_ Turbo Monkey

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    Probably in a town that starts with an "X". Thanks for being forthcoming though, it's the opposite business model that Ellsworth uses. ;)
     
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  37. Happymtb.fr

    Happymtb.fr Monkey

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    I was wrong, bmc had their production in Switzerland until 2014, then they moved to Taiwan.
     
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  38. FrameJunky

    FrameJunky Chimp

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    Can the 5010 frame handle getting thrashed downhill, day after day, by a 230lb ape(me)?

    Or should I go Bronson?