With a sharp rise in demand for bicycles ever since the Covid-19 pandemic, more people have been looking to buy a folding bike. There are many factors to consider when it comes to buying a new foldable bicycle. One of the vital buying factors will be the frame material of which the bike is made from.
The bike frame material directly translates to the durability, weight and many other considerable factors that make up a good foldable bike. As far as bike manufacturing is concerned, aluminium and steel are undoubtedly two of the most popular frame materials used. However, which is better for easier maintenance and frame longevity – an aluminium bike or a steel bike?
Benefits of Aluminium
Among all the metals, aluminium stands out as one of the lightest alloys. Despite being lightweight, aluminium retains a desirable amount of frame stiffness. This gives aluminium a high strength-to-weight ratio, making it an obvious choice for precision bike manufacturing.
Aluminium also has the ability to distribute the pressure that is exerted on it. This function enables the weight of the cyclist to be redistributed throughout the bike. In turn, the cyclist can cycle comfortably over a longer distance, using less energy.
When a layer of aluminium nitrate forms on an aluminium metal’s surface, it becomes corrosion-resistant. This makes it less prone to rust forming over time. Being corrosion-resistant, an aluminium bike will be long-lasting, durable and easier to maintain as compared to a steel bike .
Other than the above advantages, aluminium is also one of the most cost-effective alloys to procure. This means that you can get a good foldable bike at affordable prices.
Why is An Aluminium Bike a Better Choice than a Steel Bike
While steel is generally stronger and denser, it is also three times heavier than aluminium. The weight of a steel bike will directly diminish your cycling performance.
Steel is generally stiffer, as a result, it is not able to absorb road vibration well. The absence of aluminium nitrate on steel also means that steel frame bikes will rust over time.
Steel foldable bicycles will cost more and require higher regular maintenance in order to remain durable over a longer period. On the other hand, aluminium bikes will cost less and require less maintenance.
Types of Aluminium used for Birdy Bikes
Birdy performance folding bikes uses 7005 Aluminium Alloy for the frame tubing and 6061 Aluminium Alloy for the main frame.
The use of 7005 Aluminium Alloy plays a significant role in enhancing the overall frame integrity of Birdy performance foldable bicycles. The alloy is made of two strong metal elements, Zinc and Magnesium. With enhanced frame integrity, Birdy bikes will retain its core frame structure over time.
The Birdy bike main frame is made of 6061 Aluminium Alloy which is a combination of Magnesium, Silicon, Copper and Iron. With more metal elements combined together, the alloy becomes strong and ductile. As a result, the Birdy performance folding bike frame is aesthetically pleasing and sturdy at the same time.
In a nutshell, Pacific Cycles uses specialised materials for the manufacturing of its bikes. Thus, their lightweight and sturdy foldable bikes are known to be the best in its class.
What is T6 Heat Treatment?
All aluminium alloys undergo a tempering process called T6 Heat Treatment. This process thermally hardens the alloy, increasing its strength by 30%.
Birdy performance bike frame undergoes a two-phase T6 Heat Treatment process. The aluminium alloy is first heated up to 500⁰C for ten hours. This process welds the individual alloys into a strong single-piece Birdy monocoque frame. The monocoque frame is then heated to 180⁰C for another ten hours, before intensively cooled by water. This hardens the Birdy monocoque frame and drastically increases its strength.
Quality of Ride on Aluminium Frame Bikes
An aluminium bike is significantly lighter, which allows you to pick up speed faster than a steel bike. It also experiences less drag when moving off from a stationary position. As it is lightweight, the bike becomes very responsive when the rider is making a sudden change in direction when cycling. Overall, aluminium bikes are ideal for long distance touring. You can expect to go further with less effort when riding an aluminium Birdy bike.
The Aluminium Frame Design of a Birdy Bike
Unlike most foldable bikes that are double-hinged, Birdy bikes are built with a single monocoque frame design. The single-piece design enhances its overall frame integrity and longevity.
At Mighty Velo, we offer two different types of frame designs, the tubular and monocoque frames. The tubular frame on the Birdy New Classic is a redesign of the Gen 1 Birdy Classic foldable bikes. The frame is now stronger than before, offering a more comfortable and robust riding experience.
The new monocoque frame of the Birdy Gen 3 models shows off a sleek and aerodynamic design.
Aluminium Birdy Bikes at Mighty Velo
Mighty Velo is the sole authorised distributor of Pacific Cycles’ Bicycles in South East Asia. We aim to deliver the best cycling experience through our performance folding bikes. That is the reason why we choose to sell Birdy Bicycles made from aluminium.
If you want to get a feel of the Birdy performance folding bike, head down to our experience store at 30 Tai Seng Street, Breadtalk IHQ, #02-14, S534013 for a test ride. All test rides are on appointment-basis. We are open from Monday to Saturday, 10am – 7pm. Drop us an email at [email protected] or PM us on Facebook or Instagram to book a test ride appointment with us.
For those who want to get a Birdy performance foldable bicycle before 2020 ends, email us at [email protected] to pre-order one with us now. For more information, you can visit our website at shop.mightyvelo.com.