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  1. #1
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    Magnesium alloy as a bike frame material?

    Apologies if this has been done to death, but what are peoples' opinions when it comes to magnesium (alloy) as a bike frame material?

    They are already used widely on suspension fork lower legs, but haven't heard of Mg much in frame composition. It's lighter than aluminium (2/3 density) and a known structural material - aerospace anyone?

    One weakness of Mg is corrosion, being quite an active element. However, bright sparks are working on this issue ('Poisoning' corrosion brings stainless magnesium closer, Monash University).

    So what are your thoughts? If you have knowledge to share, pros/cons etc would be appreciated.

    Cheers,
    ticctacc

  2. #2
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    Why mess with cheaper things that already works, that's what the lawyers said
    Try Something Exotic | Metallurgy for Cyclists | Technical Articles | Support | Ibis Cycles US

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mimi1885 View Post
    Why mess with cheaper things that already works, that's what the lawyers said
    Try Something Exotic | Metallurgy for Cyclists | Technical Articles | Support | Ibis Cycles US
    Thanks mimi for an interesting and educational link. I think I got the jist of it

    The basics of the article was, is and will be relevant. However, the article was from circa 1994 (90210 reference!) so hopefully material science has't stagnated too badly in the last 20 years so there might still be hope in hearing about new exciting frame materials in the near future.

    Just think about how far carbon fibre has come in (I think) the last 20 years in terms of tech, performance, reliability and consumer acceptance, as well as reduced price.

    Wouldn't a new frame material give the marketing team something real to spruik, rather than inventing new wheel/BB/headtube standards and masterminding planned obsolescence??

  4. #4
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    I'm all for new things and choices, however I don't really see any new materials use on a bike frame any time soon. It has nothing to do with how good or bad the material is, but simply breaking through would be tough. Carbon is the newest material to hit the mainstream, while it's proven the advantage to many, there are some that would swear if you look at carbon frame the wrong way it would break Sadly, it's not even a new material, it's been around for very long time. I've been using carbon equipments long before cycling and have never worry about breakage.

    People still believe that steel frames are soft, and lively, ti frames are flexy, and Aluminum frames are harsh. Nevermind that builders can now pretty much build your dream ride out of any of 4 materials just the way you want it.

    I can see if Shimano and Sram would make shifter/derailleur from Mag and gain traction from there. Bike frame, probably only small builders would attempt to make it happen, and it won't be cheap.

  5. #5
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    Segal and Paketa are making awesome Mag frames. In the 90s a Russian aerospace offshoot company was making great frames under the name Lodestar and a couple others (google it). Great reviews in the magazines at the time. Under 3 lbs average, pretty durable, apparently great ride qualities. Lack of marketing horsepower ala Spesh and Trek pretty much doomed it to peripheral companies although it makes perfectly fine sense as a frame material.

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