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 Post subject: Columbus SLX vs Neuron
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 6:28 pm 
Gold Trader
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Joined: Mon Jan 15, 2007 11:40 am
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Has anyone ridden both? Any comparisons to be made? Differences? Just interested really, I already have an SLX frame, but there's a Neuron one for sale near me... :facepalm:


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 8:12 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
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Location: Sheffield, top city
Wasn't neuron lighter, big section tubes and lugless. My bro's 98 custom built neuron was certainly like that


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 8:38 pm 
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Possibly, I'm still researching the differences. The frame I have my eye on is lugged though. I'm more interested in how they feel to ride, if anyone has any experience with both


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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 10:36 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 11:01 pm
Posts: 51
I don’t know if you’ve already read this article but it may prove useful, however from what I’ve read in the past, it’s often suggested the quality of the framebuilder’s work and the geometry are supposed to have a greater influence on the ride compared to the tubing itself. This experiment is quite unique though in that geometry and spec were all identical across the bikes tested, the only difference being the type of frame tubing.


http://www.thetallcyclist.com/wp-conten ... n-Test.pdf


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 10:40 pm 
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Thanks, will read that later. Obviously the build quality can affect the ride more than the actual tubes, but assuming an equal frame size and build quality, what differences might there be?


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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 11:19 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 11:01 pm
Posts: 51
The thing I took away from the article was that there was no clear winner, and no apparent relationship between the grade of tubing and the likelihood of it being picked as the favourite by the testers. I know it’s not really helpful, but it seems to suggest that a lot of it comes down to individual preference of how you like the frame to ride.

Perhaps one of the framebuilders that frequent this forum might be able to help?


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2019 6:37 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:05 pm
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Location: High On A Hill
I've had bikes that have been built up using both types of Columbus tubing. An early 90's Eddy Merckx SLX frameset and a mid 90's Bertin Neuron frameset.
The most noticeable difference is in the weight of the frame and forks, with the Merckx SLX frameset being about 300-400 gms heavier for the same size frame.
This could be an Eddy Merckx thing because I remember reading that he specifically wanted a stiffer frame so maybe the bottom bracket shell and other bits are heavier as a result.
Anyway when it comes to ride qualities the Neuron frameset is more responsive when you push on the pedals and obviously lighter when climbing. The SLX has a great solid feel and is a really nice smooth ride, particularly when cruising on the flat.


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PostPosted: Thu May 02, 2019 9:45 pm 
Devout Dirtbag

Joined: Fri Aug 24, 2018 9:48 am
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
I've just picked up a Neuron-tubed Sancineto, which is lugged, not TIG'd, and it is a LOT lighter than the two SLX frames sitting next to it, in my workshop.

It's a shame it's too small for me, as it's a beauty.

Edited to add: It's not particularly oversized tubing. by modern standards - it's 31.7 vs 28.6 on the downtube, if you get the OS version.


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PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2019 7:06 am 
retrobike rider
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Location: A wretched hive of scum and villainy...
As you can see from the specs below, 1995 Neuron was mostly made from Columbus' new stronger UTS material (Nivacrom) which allowed the tubes to be drawn with thinner walls by 0.1-0.2mm compared to SLX, therefore lighter even with the new-fangled standard oversize tube arrangement of 28.6/28.6/31.8.
These larger diameter tubes produce a stiffer frame overall, despite the thinner walls. Since stiffness increases as a cube of diameter, but wall thickness increases just give a straight linear increase of stiffness, doubling the wall thickness = double the stiffness + double the weight; double the diameter = eight times the stiffness and double the weight. So designers then thin down the walls of the fat tubes to decrease weight, but too much risk buckling and denting. All tube specs are a compromise between these two factors)...anyway:

Attachment:
Neuron-1 (Small).jpg
Neuron-1 (Small).jpg [ 123.93 KiB | Viewed 543 times ]

Attachment:
Neuron-2 (Small).jpg
Neuron-2 (Small).jpg [ 88.07 KiB | Viewed 543 times ]


Butts are half the length of the SLX ones (60mm as opposed to 120mm).
Neuron also has the amazing elliptical butting, where the butts are thicker top and bottom or sides of the top, down, seat and steerer tubes.
The three main tubes also have SDS, a long internal strip reinforcement. This is designed to help resist denting the top tube from bars and reinforce the areas around bottle bosses braze-ons on the 0.5mm centre sections.

Conversely, SLX was designed over 10 years earlier as a heavy duty version of the venerable SL set, so was never a light tubeset, and ran the older 25.4/28.6/28.6 tube arrangement with thicker walls. The helical ribs on the main tubes (originally an option on SL steerer tubes back in 1980) were a fancy addition for the Columbus range at a time when Reynolds were forging ahead with the metallurgical wizardry of 753, but it added little other than 65g more metal to the set compared with SL.

Attachment:
SLX-1 (Small).jpg
SLX-1 (Small).jpg [ 82.26 KiB | Viewed 543 times ]

Attachment:
SLX-2 (Small).jpg
SLX-2 (Small).jpg [ 79.38 KiB | Viewed 543 times ]


Go for the Neuron frame. Still unmatched for utterly brilliant steel tube manipulation.

All the best,


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2019 11:48 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
Posts: 2488
Location: Sheffield, top city
the neuron frame my bro had, had a big oval downtube and was definitely lugless welded smooth. He had the frame built by a local builder, and would have received the tubeset from Columbus around 1997. (his company did extensive work with Columbus, and knowing he rode bikes, presented the tubeset to him as a present). At that point the tubeset he had was still unreleased to the general market, and I seem to remember his bike featured in a UK magazine when fully built. Even though it was around 60cm, the bike was light by steel standards and had a chorus 9 speed gruppo attached.


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