refurbishing a sweet steel bike is like cooking in a cast iron skillet. it's a strong foundation upon which to build. minced garlic in fresh butter with diced onion. it could go in many directions from there. possible permutations abound. it radiates quality solidity wholesome goodness and positive energy. proven technology. no fluffy trendy shit. and it's appetizing. a little iron oxide is good for you once in while and so is bacon grease.
refurbishing an aluminum bike is like frying an egg in a nonstick skillet slathered in nonstick spray. it's uninspired perfunctory pedestrian beige blase chunky chubby hollow and tinny. it's a shallow audible exhale followed by a pause leaving you wanting something more or at least to inhale but when you finally do all you get is a mouth full of acrid smoke from the Pam overspray on the burner.
aluminum is the most abundant element on earth and aluminum bikes are abundant and affordable and provide plenty of opportunities for reliable transportation and accessable recreation however when my queue at work is filled with knobby-tired grip-shifted front suspension aluminum steeds of indistinction time seems to slow down and things get heavy. 6061 7005 ok ok 220 221 whatever it takes. Treks are a dime a dozen. Cannondales make great cheater bars. Kleins are the Jaguars of aluminum bikes and Jaguars are over priced Ford Tempos.
refurbishing a carbon fiber bike is like overheating your lunchables tray in the microwave. random invisible hot spots and meltdowns. resins and epoxy and processed cheese foods oriented in a plastic matrix. lots of things that do not occur in nature. used carbon bikes should be sold as-is at-your-own-risk at rock bottom prices. carbon fiber can do some amazing things. there is no other bike in the pro peloton. there is no other bike in your local cat 4 crit. but that doesn't mean I have to like it or trust it or ride it or refurbish it.
if it sounds like I'm biased or judgmental or an anachronistic grumpy old wool underpants guy, I am. I spend my work day saving the world refurbishing old bikes. It's kind of like being a bike mechanic except I don't have to wrastle with customer's unique and difficult bikes or bogus bike choices. I get to strip off all the worn out parts and annoying accessories, u-lock holders, cycle computers, seat mounted tri bottle holders, broken reflector brackets, bar ends and sheepskin saddle covers and then rebuild the bike the way I see fit with behind the scenes access to an unparalleled selection of used bike parts, fresh brake pads, new tires, chains, cables and housing.