Bmx materials

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4/30/2020 3:12 PM
Edited Date/Time: 4/30/2020 3:13 PM

Does anyone can explain the difference s in the diffrent materials bmx industry uses ?
And why does titanium and carboon are out of the scene?

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4/30/2020 3:26 PM

Carbon is not tough enough, at least for bmx..

You can get almost anything in titanium including a frame for BMX. Cost is an issue..

When steel is used, chromoly alloy is the best strength to weight..

Aluminum is best for some things like stems, rims, seat post..

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4/30/2020 4:30 PM
Edited Date/Time: 4/30/2020 4:31 PM

I see a bit of a trend with these threads you're making, haha.

Aluminum (frames, forks, bars) and carbon is pretty much strictly for racing where the bikes don't take huge beatings such as multiple-foot drops or huge street gaps/grinds like in freestyle, but some smaller parts are CNC aluminum in feestyle.

Titanium is not the most popular, mostly because of it's high price, but it's definitely alive and well in BMX, most recently in freestyle. While some choose titanium frames, forks, and bars, there are smaller options too, such as bolts, spindles, cranks, and a bunch of other parts in titanium variants. Mike Laird custom makes frames, including titanium frames, and a newer company starting to branch into titanium BMX parts is RNC. A couple more exist, just off the top of my head.

Hi-ten steel is used primarily in lower-end/entry level freestyle bikes and isn't as strong as chromoly, but not by a drastic measure. That being said, chromoly alloy, like BSG said, is the go-to choice for freestyle.

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Scooter kid trying to ride BMX.
Instagram: @scootereyn

4/30/2020 5:21 PM

Carbon is gaining a following too, its been used in forks for a long time and frames sporadically. now its being used in frames a lot and carbon forks are the standard in Bmx racing. carbon rims showed up on the scene around 2014/15 and they are being seen more and more on race bikes at the track too.. before long, with continued advances In manufacturing we'll be seeing pretty much full carbon Bmx bikes like you see in mountain bike racing

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-- doing business like its a business since 1985 --

"*a08 is awesome" -Penman166

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4/30/2020 6:01 PM

A08 wrote:

Carbon is gaining a following too, its been used in forks for a long time and frames sporadically. now its being used in frames a lot and carbon forks are the standard in Bmx racing. carbon rims showed up on the scene around 2014/15 and they are being seen more and more on race bikes at the track too.. before long, with continued advances In manufacturing we'll be seeing pretty much full carbon Bmx bikes like you see in mountain bike racing

Full carbon race bikes already exist, and have existed for a while (Mongoose made a carbon race frame in like the late 90s-00s).

It doesn't really have any use in freestyle riding. But Eclat is testing some prototypes...

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4/30/2020 7:02 PM

A08 wrote:

Carbon is gaining a following too, its been used in forks for a long time and frames sporadically. now its being used in frames a lot and carbon forks are the standard in Bmx racing. carbon rims showed up on the scene around 2014/15 and they are being seen more and more on race bikes at the track too.. before long, with continued advances In manufacturing we'll be seeing pretty much full carbon Bmx bikes like you see in mountain bike racing

Super-Pawl wrote:

Full carbon race bikes already exist, and have existed for a while (Mongoose made a carbon race frame in like the late 90s-00s).

It doesn't really have any use in freestyle riding. But Eclat is testing some prototypes...

I’m not talking full carbon frame, which i mentioned, I’m talking everything carbon

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-- doing business like its a business since 1985 --

"*a08 is awesome" -Penman166

a08's Street Build

a08's Ohio Standard - STOLEN - REWARD IF FOUND


WTB: Chrome GSport Birdcage Rims

4/30/2020 7:25 PM

Black Swamp Ghost wrote:

Carbon is not tough enough, at least for bmx..

You can get almost anything in titanium including a frame for BMX. Cost is an issue..

When steel is used, chromoly alloy is the best strength to weight..

Aluminum is best for some things like stems, rims, seat post..

I should have written, Carbon is not tough enough, at least for freestyle, street, park..

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5/1/2020 12:44 AM

So if i understood you right -
Titanium is the Ideal materiel for bmx due to being a light but strong and since it costs more only few put there hands on it?
Chromolly is best choice after it
Than hitensteel
And carboon is very light but weak so its better avoiding it?

Also is there any difference between how they finish the material by cnc or molding ? (Ivr seen before that something compnies like to ride on when publishing their new stems)

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5/1/2020 2:12 AM
Edited Date/Time: 5/1/2020 2:12 AM

Shaked wrote:

So if i understood you right -
Titanium is the Ideal materiel for bmx due to being a light but strong and since it costs more only few put there hands on it?
Chromolly is best choice after it
Than hitensteel
And carboon is very light but weak so its better avoiding it?

Also is there any difference between how they finish the material by cnc or molding ? (Ivr seen before that something compnies like to ride on when publishing their new stems)

I would say not quite...

While titanium is undoubtedly lightweight, sometimes having a bike too light in one area can throw things off and make it handle a way you don’t want it to.

Chromoly, as of right now, is the best choice for freestyle, and yes, hi-ten after that.

Carbon should be avoided in freestyle, but in racing it’s favorable for some areas of the bike.

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Scooter kid trying to ride BMX.
Instagram: @scootereyn

5/1/2020 12:08 PM

readybmxer wrote:

I would say not quite...

While titanium is undoubtedly lightweight, sometimes having a bike too light in one area can throw things off and make it handle a way you don’t want it to.

Chromoly, as of right now, is the best choice for freestyle, and yes, hi-ten after that.

Carbon should be avoided in freestyle, but in racing it’s favorable for some areas of the bike.

Yeah, titanium isn’t for everyone. I’ve ridden full Ti setups before and they flex, as in they don’t feel “solid” if you catch my drift. Like it’s plenty strong but the “flex” makes it feel less stable if that makes sense. I enjoyed the light weight but chromoly definitely feels better

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Gave up on BMX to hang out with 13 year old soundcloud rappers, what a life, such a cool guy!
-Sheldon on Adam22

"The only future for BMX"

Yeah, kids getting shit bikes, breaking them and then quitting. LOL
-jbales on mafiaBIKES

I’ve been a 14 year old beginner for the last ten years
-adamnmexican

5/1/2020 12:15 PM

Shaked wrote:

So if i understood you right -
Titanium is the Ideal materiel for bmx due to being a light but strong and since it costs more only few put there hands on it?
Chromolly is best choice after it
Than hitensteel
And carboon is very light but weak so its better avoiding it?

Also is there any difference between how they finish the material by cnc or molding ? (Ivr seen before that something compnies like to ride on when publishing their new stems)

There's some good answers on this thread, so I'll just reframe your summary a bit. It's not that straight forward and it depends on the use case, which is why we still have the options.

Carbon is actually very strong and rigid by weight, but it is less flexible so it is less resistant to impact loads, and fails by fracturing rather than bending. It's a great option for race bikes, and maybe flatland, but I would not want to ride street, park, or trails with current carbon fiber tech for major parts.

Titanium is similar - it has higher strength to weight than steel or chromoly and it is also more rigid and tends to fracture instead of bend (often at the welds) but less so than carbon, in addition to being much more expensive. It seems to be more common for flatland or park right now, assuming you can afford it, but I'm not aware of any pros doing death gaps on Ti.

Chromoly is the most common because it has the best strength to weight ratio at a reasonable price, and is more elastic to resist impact loads from death gaps without fracturing.

Hi-ten steel is cheaper and has lower strength to weight, so it gets used on cheaper bikes that tend to be heavier and still break easier.

For parts, CNC allows better quality control and precision without the risk of a faulty casting or cooling issues.

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Remember when you could ride all day and not be sore for a week?
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5/1/2020 12:50 PM

MJbmx wrote:

There's some good answers on this thread, so I'll just reframe your summary a bit. It's not that straight forward and it depends on the use case, which is why we still have the options.

Carbon is actually very strong and rigid by weight, but it is less flexible so it is less resistant to impact loads, and fails by fracturing rather than bending. It's a great option for race bikes, and maybe flatland, but I would not want to ride street, park, or trails with current carbon fiber tech for major parts.

Titanium is similar - it has higher strength to weight than steel or chromoly and it is also more rigid and tends to fracture instead of bend (often at the welds) but less so than carbon, in addition to being much more expensive. It seems to be more common for flatland or park right now, assuming you can afford it, but I'm not aware of any pros doing death gaps on Ti.

Chromoly is the most common because it has the best strength to weight ratio at a reasonable price, and is more elastic to resist impact loads from death gaps without fracturing.

Hi-ten steel is cheaper and has lower strength to weight, so it gets used on cheaper bikes that tend to be heavier and still break easier.

For parts, CNC allows better quality control and precision without the risk of a faulty casting or cooling issues.

Keep in mind that all welds are (hopefully) done by hand because of the complexity of programming welds so always check welds when you buy parts. Mistakes happen whether or not we want them to.

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Gave up on BMX to hang out with 13 year old soundcloud rappers, what a life, such a cool guy!
-Sheldon on Adam22

"The only future for BMX"

Yeah, kids getting shit bikes, breaking them and then quitting. LOL
-jbales on mafiaBIKES

I’ve been a 14 year old beginner for the last ten years
-adamnmexican

5/2/2020 1:54 AM

Shaked wrote:

So if i understood you right -
Titanium is the Ideal materiel for bmx due to being a light but strong and since it costs more only few put there hands on it?
Chromolly is best choice after it
Than hitensteel
And carboon is very light but weak so its better avoiding it?

Also is there any difference between how they finish the material by cnc or molding ? (Ivr seen before that something compnies like to ride on when publishing their new stems)

MJbmx wrote:

There's some good answers on this thread, so I'll just reframe your summary a bit. It's not that straight forward and it depends on the use case, which is why we still have the options.

Carbon is actually very strong and rigid by weight, but it is less flexible so it is less resistant to impact loads, and fails by fracturing rather than bending. It's a great option for race bikes, and maybe flatland, but I would not want to ride street, park, or trails with current carbon fiber tech for major parts.

Titanium is similar - it has higher strength to weight than steel or chromoly and it is also more rigid and tends to fracture instead of bend (often at the welds) but less so than carbon, in addition to being much more expensive. It seems to be more common for flatland or park right now, assuming you can afford it, but I'm not aware of any pros doing death gaps on Ti.

Chromoly is the most common because it has the best strength to weight ratio at a reasonable price, and is more elastic to resist impact loads from death gaps without fracturing.

Hi-ten steel is cheaper and has lower strength to weight, so it gets used on cheaper bikes that tend to be heavier and still break easier.

For parts, CNC allows better quality control and precision without the risk of a faulty casting or cooling issues.

Thats a great summary for a dummie like me xD

I think im going to avoid titanium and carbon unless i switch from street to park or flatland.

What do you think about freestyle brands like Eclat that trys for example a carbon fiber rim? Since rims doesn't really bend they fracture and they stays in a dentable spot.. it might be a good place to put carboon, and if im not mistaken ive seen also carboon forks. your thoughts?
Also places like seat posts, stems, bolts, spokes, sprockets, hubs, forks and maybe even handlebars and cranks seems to be dinamic spots where you might be able to shave some weight by using titanium/carboon ?

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5/2/2020 9:28 AM

Shaked wrote:

Thats a great summary for a dummie like me xD

I think im going to avoid titanium and carbon unless i switch from street to park or flatland.

What do you think about freestyle brands like Eclat that trys for example a carbon fiber rim? Since rims doesn't really bend they fracture and they stays in a dentable spot.. it might be a good place to put carboon, and if im not mistaken ive seen also carboon forks. your thoughts?
Also places like seat posts, stems, bolts, spokes, sprockets, hubs, forks and maybe even handlebars and cranks seems to be dinamic spots where you might be able to shave some weight by using titanium/carboon ?

I haven't tried any of them so I can't really answer that, this is just an opinion on the internet. I specify materials for construction, not product manufacturing, take it for what it's worth I guess.

Rims take a lot of side load, and actually flex a lot. Carbon has been used in racing rims for awhile, I'm sure there's a reason they haven't crossed over. I'd try carbon rims for flat or light park, I'll be surprised if they hold up to heavier riding. Saving 5 or 10 oz per wheel would be nice though.

Same thing with forks, they take some heavy shear at the steering tube. I've broken a few and I don't really ride too hard. Thinking about getting a titanium fork though, or ti bars...

For the smaller parts, it's a trade off for cost to weight. I think titanium makes the most sense for heavier parts like axles or cranks and spindles where they can save more than an ounce or two, if you have the budget. Spending money on a bolt to save a few grams seems a bit much to me. No offense to those who do, and it makes more sense in competition where every advantage counts. But if you run today's larger tires at 24 oz each, you'd save more weight with a good Kevlar tire for less money than a ti bolt.

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Remember when you could ride all day and not be sore for a week?
Instagram: @theothermaj

5/2/2020 11:41 AM

Shaked wrote:

So if i understood you right -
Titanium is the Ideal materiel for bmx due to being a light but strong and since it costs more only few put there hands on it?
Chromolly is best choice after it
Than hitensteel
And carboon is very light but weak so its better avoiding it?

Also is there any difference between how they finish the material by cnc or molding ? (Ivr seen before that something compnies like to ride on when publishing their new stems)

MJbmx wrote:

There's some good answers on this thread, so I'll just reframe your summary a bit. It's not that straight forward and it depends on the use case, which is why we still have the options.

Carbon is actually very strong and rigid by weight, but it is less flexible so it is less resistant to impact loads, and fails by fracturing rather than bending. It's a great option for race bikes, and maybe flatland, but I would not want to ride street, park, or trails with current carbon fiber tech for major parts.

Titanium is similar - it has higher strength to weight than steel or chromoly and it is also more rigid and tends to fracture instead of bend (often at the welds) but less so than carbon, in addition to being much more expensive. It seems to be more common for flatland or park right now, assuming you can afford it, but I'm not aware of any pros doing death gaps on Ti.

Chromoly is the most common because it has the best strength to weight ratio at a reasonable price, and is more elastic to resist impact loads from death gaps without fracturing.

Hi-ten steel is cheaper and has lower strength to weight, so it gets used on cheaper bikes that tend to be heavier and still break easier.

For parts, CNC allows better quality control and precision without the risk of a faulty casting or cooling issues.

Shaked wrote:

Thats a great summary for a dummie like me xD

I think im going to avoid titanium and carbon unless i switch from street to park or flatland.

What do you think about freestyle brands like Eclat that trys for example a carbon fiber rim? Since rims doesn't really bend they fracture and they stays in a dentable spot.. it might be a good place to put carboon, and if im not mistaken ive seen also carboon forks. your thoughts?
Also places like seat posts, stems, bolts, spokes, sprockets, hubs, forks and maybe even handlebars and cranks seems to be dinamic spots where you might be able to shave some weight by using titanium/carboon ?

Actually I’d say it’s more the other way around, I’ve never seen a rim fracture but I’ve seen plenty bend and dent.

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Gave up on BMX to hang out with 13 year old soundcloud rappers, what a life, such a cool guy!
-Sheldon on Adam22

"The only future for BMX"

Yeah, kids getting shit bikes, breaking them and then quitting. LOL
-jbales on mafiaBIKES

I’ve been a 14 year old beginner for the last ten years
-adamnmexican

5/4/2020 5:21 AM

Black Swamp Ghost wrote:

Carbon is not tough enough, at least for bmx..

You can get almost anything in titanium including a frame for BMX. Cost is an issue..

When steel is used, chromoly alloy is the best strength to weight..

Aluminum is best for some things like stems, rims, seat post..

Carbon is popping up, Eclat has carbon rims they are toying with. Racing is FULL of carbon unless you are in it for fun or a not-yet crazy-competitive rider. Impact and cost are really the ONLY reasons we don't use it. Ultimately it would make an AWESOME trails or pegless part bike, and would make a KILLER flatland setup too, but it's a relatively new material in cycling as a whole (the last 20-25 years or so VS steel since the 1800s).

I think it is a cost to develop issue. Many BMXers don't want a huge brand coming in (like Specialized for example) to BMX all that much out of fear of it being not BMX rider owned, the brand only in it for the money etc, but we NEED that kind of money to dive into that development. I mean, tapered headtubes have been in MTB for nearly a decade now, and We The People were TOYING with it like 2 years back but nothing has come from it. Same with integrated style headsets. They have been in bikes for a LONG time, took us til around 2005 to really bring em out.

Specialized was HUGE for a bit in BMX around 05ish, but then other brands figured out how to drop weight just like they did (they had the lightest freestyle stuff for a bit when bikes were 35+ lbs consistently). They came back around 2012 with some good stuff, but riders aren't about that corporation. Many of us are basically hipsters that want that one-off mom n pop brand stuff.


I read somewhere that when it comes to materials for bikes, we are at like 95+% of what we can do with Chromoly and/or steel, around 85% with aluminum, and with carbon, MAYBE 50%.

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