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Development status of titanium in bicycle industry
Dec 14, 2016

Titanium used for bicycle and wheelchair frame is formed in the middle of 80s, the application of titanium is developing fast, but due to the small market began to become hot, the application process of titanium in the world to slow down.

1, bicycle frame

In the last few years because of cuts to defense and aircraft industry has a floating, the three companies in the United States to use a l Ti-3 production of 2.5V pipe to the bicycle industry, but the production of the world is a bicycle frame 3AI-2.5V less than three Boeing 747 aircraft with titanium (130t). There are nearly 50 production of titanium bicycle company, 90% of the world's total titanium frame from several original equipment manufacturers (OE), half of the remaining 10% is produced by the United States, America has long is the largest titanium bicycle production and consumption country in.2015 years is likely to be the highest annual sales of titanium frame, it will produce 17000 side titanium frame, a total weight of about 82 tons of materials, including titanium tubes, rods and plates. When more and more cyclists began to understand the benefits of titanium, but feel shy, with air quality pipe production Ti-3Al-2.5V frame, each pair of price Lattice between 1600 and 3500 dollars, the bicycle price from $2400 to $6000. In the past four years, industrial pure titanium tube and non aviation -3AI-2.SV (motion level) with penalty frame made of titanium alloy is very popular, some sports grade titanium frame retail lowest price $1000 per pair, the bicycle is the most price of $1700.

2, bicycle parts

Bicycle parts that are connected on the frame of the crankshaft positioner, pedal, handlebar, titanium parts industry than does -3 penalty 1 2.5V frame industry develops quickly, most of the components are produced by using the Ti-6AI-4V components, mostly using bar or sheet machine out by Ti-6A1-4V. The purchasing power of just Ti-3 2.5V bleeding. The frame of 1/31997 about 10t parts. Casting parts can be SB more and more common, but this development may be greater than the machining parts of slow development, titanium suppliers began production to titanium parts manufacturers to provide cheap materials, most of the low cost of bicycle level material is virtually eliminated aviation materials.

3 wheel chair frame and components

The wheelchair market is different in many ways from the bicycle market, the most important difference is that only a small amount of titanium wheelchair frame production, mostly produced by seamed industrial pure titanium tube, titanium total wheelchair purchasing power is about 55t. at present in only a handful of American companies have enough research and development funds to develop titanium wheelchair or buy materials. Compared with the cheaper aluminum wheelchair, wheelchair advantage of titanium is not much, but now titanium screw bolt, titanium parts industry has not yet formed a wheelchair, although there is a market, but very small, only a small amount of consumable parts including.

4, material requirements

Has the advantages of compact structure, good rigidity, light weight is a bicycle and wheelchair General requirements to drive specification, titanium is not always the best material, and cast and wrought aluminium is more popular, if the titanium metal matrix composites (MMCs) reduced price, there may be some aluminum application market substitutes.

Bicycle frame materials requirements are very simple, but the driving behavior is the key, make the choice of materials in some complex, most transport, structural elements and internal facilities and operating elements are separated, until recently, all require a bicycle frame mounting structure integrity and function. Now there is not a titanium alloy it is especially designed for bicycle, only some of the material was modified for bicycles, most people consider is to reduce cost, and accept the main problems of titanium parts face is rigid and not cost.

Ti-3Al-2.5V is the most commonly used titanium alloy, although it is developed for aircraft hydraulic system, but due to the formability, corrosion resistance. The fatigue strength and high weight ratio and good elongation to meet the standard market performance of the bicycle, compared with other titanium alloy, the biggest advantage of Ti-3Al-2.5V is the yield strength and the tube forming easily, the disadvantage is its price and the modulus and density ratio difference. In order to put Ti-3Al-2.5V out for the leading position for the frame of the material is not easy the.Ti-6AI-4V also has a certain appeal, its modulus and strength are higher than Ti-3Al-2.5V, but processed into a bicycle frame that small diameter tubing.Ti 15V-3Al 6Cr-4Mo-4Zr is also a difficult easy molding, but the density of high modulus, low offset the benefits it increases in strength of the.

Wheelchair frame

The wheelchair frame material and bicycle frame is basically the same aluminum, carbon fiber, titanium and steel and other materials, dry as much as possible the chair frame. The frame is not tilting tilting but cause for riding and handling problems, the running frame of Shibuya, also blunt frame often leads to three wheels touch the ground, this is because the ground is the frame of rough or not perfect cause, and three wheels in a wheelchair and lead to not run straight, not easy to manipulate. The correct design is on the titanium wheelchair reverse manipulation and traction, improve the flexibility of mining user fatigue, titanium also has resilience. Despite the high density of Ti-15V 3Al-6Cr-4Mo 4Zr, but the flexural properties, and make the Ti-3/%1-2.5V have the same suction arch 1, followed by its low modulus and Ti-3Al-2.53/ compared to the frame to improve the flexibility and comfort.

5, market development

If you are interested in the development of titanium titanium industry in the sporting goods industry, including bicycles and wheelchairs, not only to producers of publicity, but also to the end user product publicity in.70 titanium frame after the failure, although due to the excellent performance of the Ti-3A1-2.5V pipe made of titanium reputation has increased, but it is vulnerable to the threat of entering the market is cheap the industrial pure titanium frame, titanium frame and some small production companies plus, they do not have the knowledge and resources necessary to create successful titanium products, which will affect the reputation of titanium in the bicycle industry and other areas of consumer goods, a few years ago, this problem has been encountered in the yacht industry, titanium in the market of high-tech sailing discredited, titanium is still being in the game the authorities banned the use of sailboats, such problems can be avoided by propaganda.

6, research and development

The bicycle and wheelchair industry with the yacht industry, the technology is better than mature in the aviation industry, most companies spend on research and development on than on sales, so if the factory want to bike manufacturer selling materials, it must do some responsibility for the study. The wheelchair and bicycle is 100 years use of steel as material, few aspects need to be improved, so only a handful of engineers engaged in research, in general, steel pipe factory bike manufacturers than the frame for how to produce a durable bicycle frame about much more. Most of the research on the applicability of titanium alloy in special applications has been the producer to carry out air the work, but the bike industry can also not willing to invest in research. Therefore titanium manufacturer if you want to improve their market share. Must support the design process of consumer products, the company must be aware of the long-term development of the company must recognize the long-term development will come from education is very important.