Steel vs. Carbon Fiber Bikes

Steel vs. Carbon Fiber Bikes

When you are a cyclist the process of picking the right bicycle can be a painstaking one. A bicycle is more than just a pair of wheels, handlebars, and a pedal. A bicycle is a tool that has to correspond to the needs and riding style of the person who is riding it. A bicycle is a very personal thing and finding the right one for you means that you find the bike that has all of the right components that suit your needs. One of the most important aspects of a bicycle is what material its frame is made from. Two of the most popular materials are that of steel and carbon fiber. Here are the differences between the two and why you should pick one over the other.

Durability

Carbon fiber and steel are both very similar to one another in that they are both roughly the same in durability. They can both take a lot of daily wear and tear without any significant damage being done. When you use a steel bike the expectation is probably that it would be more durable than the bicycle made from carbon fiber. The truth is that the carbon fiber bike can perform just as well under most circumstances.

Due to the way that the carbon fiber is created there is a greater chance of the material flexing. This does increase the possibility of damage eventually being done. However, if you treat your bike well this should not be too much of an issue.

Weight

When you have to carry a bicycle around you want it to have enough weight to be sturdy but you also want it to be light enough to not be cumbersome. Steel is relatively lightweight when used on a bicycle but it needs to be said that carbon fiber is significantly lighter. In fact the lightness of carbon fiber is part of that material’s main selling point as it is used to significantly decrease the weight of numerous different products beyond bicycles.

Having a lighter bicycle means that it is easier to haul around when you reach terrain that is less than friendly for the type of bike that you have. It also puts significantly less strain on any bike rack that you may attach to your car while you are driving.

Price

The biggest drawback to going with a carbon fiber bicycle is the fact that carbon fiber is significantly more expensive. Carbon fiber is still a hot commodity on the market right now and as a result the price for it is still very high. The question of whether or not the additional cost is worthwhile is something that only you can answer for yourself. There are some who feel that the added cost is not worth it, even with all of the benefits offered by carbon fiber.