Affordable Carbon Bike Frames

Does anyone have suggestions where to get affordable carbon bike frames? For round numbers, let’s say under $1500USD.

I’m riding a 2010 Motobecane that is probably one size too big for me, plus the geometry is more than a decade old, which actually makes the fit even worse. I’d love to get a Specialized Tarmac or Roubaix but $5000USD for the frame seems ridiculous to me. Even the Diverge frame (if I were to get a groadie) is $2700USD.

Light Bicycle is selling a gravel frame for $1300USD. At that price it’s almost worth considering to be able to get a properly fitting bike now and possibly transfer all of the components to an upgraded frame in a few years.

EDIT: I would build a new bike using the new frame.

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Some other options here https://www.cyclistshub.com/best-chinese-gravel-bike-frames/

I don’t know what components are on your Motobecane, but I’m guessing you might have some compatibility issues with disc brake mounting (post vs flat mount), thru-axles/hub width, and BB/crank. Once you start buying new wheels, brakes and cranks, you might as well buy all of it and have 2 bikes. :slight_smile:

Yes, I’d build a new bike from the new frame. Relatively few components from the 2010 can / should transfer over.

What size?

56cm. I’m 5’ 11" with 32" inseam. 165lbs / 75kg.

Ah. I have a 54cm Scott I might would sell :slight_smile: full ultegra w/Enve foundation 45s.

I’m 5’9” 145 32 inch inseam

I buy Chinese carbon frames. Works well for me, for a third the price. I buy the frame and fork and stuff and build it up myself. But you have to be willing to accept that you may get a lemon.

Another option is Planet X, which adds a layer of QA and some branding. I’ve used lots of their stuff, works well.

Also look at these guys https://thesis.bike/ a number of friends use them. It works well. It’s a Chinese carbon frame, with some extra AA. They actually bought the license to that frame so only they can have it made for them (I have that frame before it went private).

Thesis is a good value, not very well known. Stock is a problem though.

@Ultrawolf thank you so much for the offer, and I would totally take you up on it if it were a 56. My Motobecane is closer to a 59 in today’s geometry, which is making me do some interesting things to make the fit work, including a short stem, narrow handle bars, and short cranks. I also have to get approval from the real boss, so definitely want it to be “just right.” Thanks!!

Check out the Weight Weenies thread below. There’s like 300 pages of info about Chinese open mold frames, most of which are under $1000. You can probably skip most of it and read the last year or so. There’s a lot of feedback regarding different brands and who is trusted. It’s a good source.

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SL7, roubaix, diverge, that light bike frame… they’re all quite different kinds of bikes. Do you have a clearer idea of what you are looking for in a new bike?

Have you considered something like - TCR Advanced Disc 2 PC (2021) | Race bike | Giant Bicycles US

I admittedly need to test ride an endurance and performance bike to see what I prefer. I mostly ride fondos and centuries, so that would lead toward an endurance bike like the Roubaix. However, I feel more comfortable in the drops on my current bike so I’m curious if a performance type fit like the Tarmac wouldn’t feel better even on long rides. I like the idea of also having a gravel bike but have no trails nearby, but the Diverge geo is close to the Roubaix, which is the only reason I mentioned it.

I’d get an Allez sprint and call it a day. They are only 1200g

TPC pricing on frames seem to be more realistic nowadays. Have you taken a look at their selection? Lots of options in the <$1500 range if you don’t mind going used.

New allez sprint coming soon. more SL7 like.

omg omg omg where!?

some info leaked on other forums, a screenshot was posted of a listing from a specialized website of another country etc. No pics yet AFAIK but the rest of the tidbits released to date seem reliable/logical.

internal cable routing was the big thing mentioned.

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I second the Planet X stuff…I was on their US team back when they had a warehouse in Portland…I’ve had 2 MTB frames and 4 road frames with only one issue which they replaced the frame because it developed a crack on the slot that is cut in the seat mast tube.

The most affordable carbon frame right now is the rim brake carbon frame you are riding! :grinning:

Specialized will call the Allez an SL7-AR, put an integrated stem on it, and try and get $2500 for it. Many will go for it if it looks hot.

The Emonda ALR looks pretty spiffy for $1150. They still even make a rim brake model in case one wants to use all their old wheels.