Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

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Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by LockH » Apr 16, 2018 10:56 am

Hehe... ESB "Search found 1211 matches: Titanium -LTO" (not including LTO batteries using Titanium...) again:

Could titanium bikes be set to get cheaper?
("Scientists develop manufacturing process that massively reduces the steps required to product titanium components"):
http://road.cc/content/tech-news/240277 ... et-cheaper

Mmmm... "a material as strong as steel but half the weight"... (think, more energy efficient to accelerate, etc...)

Includes:
Scientists at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory in Porton Down (link is external) have apparently developed a process that reduces the 40 stages required in producing titanium down to just two steps. It says this could potentially halve the cost of titanium production.
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by Cephalotus » Apr 16, 2018 11:57 am

Look at the outdoor market.

Titanium products are now made almost exclusivly in China (except Japan and I'm not 100% sure if they still have a production)

Quality now is the same, price 20-30%.

Now the western world even lost the capabilities to match the Chinese quality.

If you wnat a cheap titanium frame wait until the Chinese are willing to look at that market.

They will make it at 20% of todays cost, the first batches will be shit but they will learn fast.

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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by Alan B » Apr 16, 2018 12:05 pm

There are some pretty cheap titanium bikes around, probably from China already.

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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by LockH » Apr 16, 2018 12:20 pm

^^^ Hehe... Made in China by burning lots of coal and using cheap ("slave") labour... then transported long distances to foreign markets... via diseasal-powered cargo ships. And all subsidized heavily by governments. [sigh] :lol:
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by Chalo » Apr 16, 2018 12:55 pm

Alan B wrote:
Apr 16, 2018 12:05 pm
There are some pretty cheap titanium bikes around, probably from China already.
For the last 20 years, budget titanium bike frames have been a mix of Chinese and Russian (or other former Eastern Bloc) production. Here, i think Ti bike frames were originally a commercial spinoff from the nuclear industry, but in those other places they were offshoots of the aircraft industry.

All the parent industries of commercial Ti fabrication are conducive to extremely high production quality.
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by spinningmagnets » Apr 16, 2018 12:57 pm

China and Russia both have a lot of domestic titanium coming from their own mines. Titanium is able to be recycled. Most of the mined titanium goes into the manufacture of aircraft, but most "used" titanium from worn out aircraft is not recycled into new aircraft parts due to the risk of contamination by un-certified alloying agents that might get mixed-in by accident (or on purpose by unscrupulous recyclers).

Therefore, there is a lot of used titanium coming from old scrapped aircraft that is only useful in building something else...like upscale bicycle frames. With all the bicycles being manufactured in China, I can easily see them beginning to promote Chinese titanium bicycle frames soon...

Didn't Corbin fiber buy a titanium demonstrator from an Interbike vendor a couple years ago?...

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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by Chalo » Apr 16, 2018 1:53 pm

Even if raw titanium becomes cheaper, it will remain difficult and expensive to manufacture things from it. For that reason, I don't think we can look forward to cheap Ti bikes anytime soon. Sub-$1000 Ti frames, maybe. But not sub-$1000 Ti bikes anymore.
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by LockH » Apr 16, 2018 2:43 pm

Hehe... "potentially halve the cost of titanium production"... nEVer thought it would get "cheap". :wink:
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by markz » Apr 16, 2018 10:31 pm

For ebikes is Ti bicycles worth it?

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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by amberwolf » Apr 16, 2018 10:57 pm

Does your specific personal use benefit from Titanium over other materials? If not, then no.

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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by tomjasz » Apr 17, 2018 2:13 am

Reading spooked me... True?
"From extraction, to final welding and finishing, titanium is fraught with very complex processes that are as expensive as they are essential. One slip, omission on behalf of the mill, machinist, welder or finisher or the slightest contamination of Oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrocarbon (i.e. human fingertips) at the wrong time and the frame will almost certainly fail at some point. 
Hence most bike companies don't do titanium. And of those that do, most do it badly.

The reality is, unfortunately, that we hear of as many titanium bikes breaking as carbon. Why? Because titanium is impossible to make cheaply and most bikes are sourced from anonymous factories in the far-east where it is impossible to monitor design and construction methods."


I contamination that Ron describes is as much factor as this article suggests, I'd be very concerned. Does a few pounds matter with an eBike?
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by LockH » Apr 17, 2018 4:49 am

markz wrote:
Apr 16, 2018 10:31 pm
For ebikes is Ti bicycles worth it?
I'll bite. :)

For strength and lightness... watt premium to pay for added cost to manufacture? :wink:
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Re: Titanium bikes set to get cheaper?

Post by LockH » Apr 17, 2018 4:57 am

tomjasz wrote:
Apr 17, 2018 2:13 am
Reading spooked me... True?
"From extraction, to final welding and finishing, titanium is fraught with very complex processes that are as expensive as they are essential. One slip, omission on behalf of the mill, machinist, welder or finisher or the slightest contamination of Oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrocarbon (i.e. human fingertips) at the wrong time and the frame will almost certainly fail at some point. 
Hence most bike companies don't do titanium. And of those that do, most do it badly.

The reality is, unfortunately, that we hear of as many titanium bikes breaking as carbon. Why? Because titanium is impossible to make cheaply and most bikes are sourced from anonymous factories in the far-east where it is impossible to monitor design and construction methods."


I contamination that Ron describes is as much factor as this article suggests, I'd be very concerned. Does a few pounds matter with an eBike?
"manufacturing process that massively reduces the steps required"... Suspect is code words for less involvement by "the mill, machinist, welder or finisher" etc? :wink:
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