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Thread: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    Each of us has a different metric regarding what looks balanced. That's why convention (bicycles with double diamonds and level top tubes) left the building by the time the 1980s rolled around.
    Yes. There are different ideas of harmony and balance. I still don´t understand the gains from a slopping top tube on a road bike.
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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Yes. There are different ideas of harmony and balance. I still don´t understand the gains from a slopping top tube on a road bike.
    I still don't understand that you don't understand.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    People used to talk to each other too. Now it's text this and DM that.
    You think my industry and what we make at the bench are immune to change?
    We could not text each other before. That one is not about taste.
    I came here for the socks.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    I still don't understand that you don't understand.
    You didn´t explain either so there you go. ( a bit like theatre of absurd)
    I came here for the socks.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    There are countless ways to skin this cat and have a bike look balanced and ride great. As long as it's designed to fit and function properly, it will look the part.

    It's also in the eye of the beholder. I have a couple buddies with excellent taste in bikes who ride the snot out of them and come from MTB before getting into road. Their feelings about stem length and seatpost setback are pretty much opposite of mine, but that doesn't make them wrong. Just different. They're a couple of the strongest mofos I know and their bikes are rad.

    The only thing I know to be an incontrovertible fact is that bikes in my size and general proportions, regardless of top tube slope, look the best and bikes that are bigger or smaller look totally wrong. This is my truth.
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Strongin View Post
    There are countless ways to skin this cat and have a bike look balanced and ride great. As long as it's designed to fit and function properly, it will look the part.

    It's also in the eye of the beholder. I have a couple buddies with excellent taste in bikes who ride the snot out of them and come from MTB before getting into road. Their feelings about stem length and seatpost setback are pretty much opposite of mine, but that doesn't make them wrong. Just different. They're a couple of the strongest mofos I know and their bikes are rad.

    The only thing I know to be an incontrovertible fact is that bikes in my size and general proportions, regardless of top tube slope, look the best and bikes that are bigger or smaller look totally wrong. This is my truth.
    Function dictates form. No problem with that. I want to understand the function of a slopping top tube; that is the title of the thread. Unless it´s only for aesthethic reasons and i won´t discuss taste. There are theories on form regarding effect on psyche and i believe that´s part of function.
    I came here for the socks.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Lines used to flow from stem to handlebar and brake levers. Bars were parallel to stem and top tube. Tubes were slender and structure looked delicate while it was engaged in speed through maximum human effort. Colors from clothing and bicycle played together. Does it matter if it does not flow anymore and each part of the bicycle seems plugged to another like plumbing?
    Man, that's all just your opinion based on some ideal aesthetic that you've locked in on. And sure, that's cool for you, I guess, but your opinions aren't fact. Parts change, times change, there are tons of ways to make killer bikes that are purpose built. I love my lugged "classic" slender steel bike as much as I love my aero carbon race bike. They both look amazing to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Yes. There are different ideas of harmony and balance. I still don´t understand the gains from a slopping top tube on a road bike.
    Some say it stiffens the ride, some do it for fit, some do it for aesthetic balance (you know, not rockin' a 1 inch seatpost on a small frame). And maybe some do it for all of the above. I'm not sure what's so hard to get.
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    There is no functional argument for level top tubes. A horizontal top tube is completely arbitrary, besides aesthetic preference.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Function dictates form. No problem with that. I want to understand the function of a slopping top tube; that is the title of the thread. Unless it´s only for aesthethic reasons and i won´t discuss taste.
    As noted above (our posts crossed paths), it's about function, about fit (related to function), and about aesthetics. It's one choice of many that is made by a builder (or bike company) when designing a bike and it's a fine choice to make. I'll give you some examples. My Fireflys have very slight slope to the top tube to help lengthen the exposed seat post, which is something I like aesthetically. My old Rock Lobster had a sloping top tube to make it easier to pack (S&S Couplers). There are different reasons and they're all valid.
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Strongin View Post
    The only thing I know to be an incontrovertible fact is that bikes in my size and general proportions, regardless of top tube slope, look the best and bikes that are bigger or smaller look totally wrong. This is my truth.
    The only thing I know to be an incontrovertible fact is that negatively judging the aesthetics of a bike without its rider is a pointless, sterile exercise.

    I want to know how the whole deal looks in motion. How it makes the rider feel is even more important but that's hard to tell unless you're riding it.

    Of course some bikes are pretty just sitting there. That's cool.
     

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyler Evans View Post
    There is no functional argument for level top tubes. A horizontal top tube is completely arbitrary, besides aesthetic preference.
    But what about the balance and harmony with the universe?
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Strongin View Post
    Man, that's all just your opinion based on some ideal aesthetic that you've locked in on. And sure, that's cool for you, I guess, but your opinions aren't fact. Parts change, times change, there are tons of ways to make killer bikes that are purpose built. I love my lugged "classic" slender steel bike as much as I love my aero carbon race bike. They both look amazing to me.



    Some say it stiffens the ride, some do it for fit, some do it for aesthetic balance (you know, not rockin' a 1 inch seatpost on a small frame). And maybe some do it for all of the above. I'm not sure what's so hard to get.
    There is no function to it then. That´s what i wanted to know. Thanks.
    I came here for the socks.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Yes. There are different ideas of harmony and balance. I still don´t understand the gains from a slopping top tube on a road bike.
    The gains from a sloping top tube allow a lower standover for some people. They allow makers to have fewer sizes that fit more people by simply changing saddle height and or stem length. Theses types of bicycles also create new pie slice for large producers who want people to buy something new, rather than keep riding what they already have. The Giant bicycles in the 1990s, the ones raced by ONCE, were a pivotal part of the change because their successes validated what was then an unconventional approach to connecting the dots between fixed lines. And really - that's all this is, connecting dots. If you don't like them, or think the balance looks weird, that's fine.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    There is no function to it then. That´s what i wanted to know. Thanks.
    Sure, if that helps you confirm your predetermined conclusion. Though I like Tyler's post...a level top tube serves no function. Maybe we should just start riding bikes without top tubes all together since their angle is controversial.
    "I guess you're some weird relic of an obsolete age." - davids

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Lines used to flow from stem to handlebar and brake levers. Bars were parallel to stem and top tube. Tubes were slender and structure looked delicate while it was engaged in speed through maximum human effort. Colors from clothing and bicycle played together. Does it matter if it does not flow anymore and each part of the bicycle seems plugged to another like plumbing?
    And bikes with DT shifters and non aero brake cables look plugged together, whereas modern bikes where everything from cabling to bolt access is hidden look far more cohesive and integrated, for better or ill. YMMV.

    Aesthetics is a personal and highly subjective thing.
     

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    The gains from a sloping top tube allow a lower standover for some people. They allow makers to have fewer sizes that fit more people by simply changing saddle height and or stem length. Theses types of bicycles also create new pie slice for large producers who want people to buy something new, rather than keep riding what they already have. The Giant bicycles in the 1990s, the ones raced by ONCE, were a pivotal part of the change because their successes validated what was then an unconventional approach to connecting the dots between fixed lines. And really - that's all this is, connecting dots. If you don't like them, or think the balance looks weird, that's fine.
    Since a very early age i am fascinated w/ lines and geometry. Architecture has some interesting visual rules which aim to affect our psyche. Like the geometric harmony of the Parthenon temple in Athens: it´s not taste but pure math. That´s why i am asking the reason to end the parallel to the horizon lines of a bicycle.
    I came here for the socks.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    That´s why i am asking the reason to end the parallel to the horizon lines of a bicycle.
    First tell us why it began.
    Not why as in architecture speak.
    Why as in bicycle design.

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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by theflashunc View Post

    Aesthetics is a personal and highly subjective thing.
    Maybe... but there is strategy behind each side of taste w/ very specific goals on what comes out as our mindset. It plays on the unconscious.
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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    First tell us why it began.
    Not why as in architecture speak.
    Why as in bicycle design.
    You first. You know more about bicycle shape and history than me. I can only make analogies to other stuff. That´s why i asked.. it was not a statement just a question.
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    Default Re: What´s the reasoning behind dropped top tubes on a road bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by colker View Post
    Otoh it does not make sense to me: power is generated at the BB and transfered thru chainstays. Both, bb and cstays, stay the same no matter how short are the other tubes.
    He's talking about the feel of swinging the bike side-to-side (it essentially rocks side-to-side about a line through the tire contact patches). The lower the bike's CG, the lower the moment of inertia of rocking the bike about that line. Tom was equating the feel of that lower CG on that moment of inertia of the the sloping design with a bike of a "traditional" design that weighed three pounds less.
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