General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Road bike indecision= annoying Rss Feed  
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2013-05-14 8:30 AM


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Subject: Road bike indecision= annoying

I am coming from a hybrid- never have ridden a road bike other than the test rides I've been taking. Looking for a entry level bike that would be fine in sprint/oly distance tri, up to 50 mile weekend rides in moderately hilly terrain. Given that I'll be new to it all I am leaning towards endurance/comfort bikes (i.e., taller head tube). All feel fine riding- I think I'm so new to it that 10-15 minutes on each isn't letting me discern likes/dislikes, so I am going to go with what seems like the best bike for the money and take it to someone with a great rep for fitting. What does everyone think would be the best choice amongst these? Budget is up to $1500, I realize that keeps me at aluminum and I am ok with that.

Giant Defy 1

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bikes/model/defy.1/11498/55820/ 

Specialized Allez Comp Mid-Compact

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bikes/road/allez/allezcompmidcompact

Scott Speedster 20

http://www.scott-sports.com/us/en/products/227786/scott-speedster-20-bike/;jsessionid=0ED1BF79B51E82949A9C2B0EDBF47AD5#.UZI7Kcow3WU

Felt Z85

http://www.feltbicycles.com/USA/2013/Road/Z-Series/Z85.aspx

BH Zaphire

http://bhbikes-us.com/bikes/detail/24

Cannondale CAAD 8

http://www.cannondale.com/2013/bikes/road/elite-road/caad8/caad8-5-105-triple-crankset

 

 

Thoughts appreciated, thanks!



Edited by bigbadbuff 2013-05-14 8:31 AM


2013-05-14 8:32 AM
in reply to: #4741431

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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
CAAD 8, no question. its just leaps and bounds above the others IMO.
2013-05-14 8:43 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
I love my CAAD 8!
2013-05-14 8:59 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
I had been a cyclist through my college years, but had been away from it for about 25 years when I bought a new bike in 2011. I tried the Specialized, a Trek (model escapes me), and the Defy 1. For me, it was an easy choice ... and I could just feel the difference pretty easily. The Defy just "fit". Pretty much out of the box, as well ... my fitter made only very small adjustments.

So if you're feeling like all the test rides are giving you an equal feeling, take one more ride on each and just pay attention to that "intuitive" fit that you might be overlooking for specific differences that may not exist. Or decide based on which one looks best for you.

The Defy will be a compact and the CAAD will be a triple. I ride the hills of VT and have really appreciated my compact. 
2013-05-14 9:49 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

BernardDogs - 2013-05-14 9:59 AM
The Defy will be a compact and the CAAD will be a triple. I ride the hills of VT and have really appreciated my compact. 

I would probably have gotten the Cannondale by now if it were not for the triple crank. I am concerned about that given the local hills. My hybrid is a triple and it is tough going up them.

2013-05-14 10:04 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

For $1500 you should be able to get a CAAD 10 w/105.  Might want to add that to the list.  That was actually my first choice a year ago except...bad fit.  At the end of the day, find the bike that fits you best.  Even a super deal on a bike that does not fit you is a bad choice.

Good luch.



2013-05-14 10:14 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
I have the Felt Z85 as my road and training bike and do not regret the purchase. It is a very nice ride, and I have logged up to 50 miles at a shot. It should be available for under $1500, leaving you money for a set of pedals, and a few other accessories (seat pack, flat kit, bottles, etc).

The 105 with the 50/34 crank is great for the age-grouper, and the 12-28 rear cassette will take you over a wide-variety of terrain, without the need for a triple in the front.

Good luck!
2013-05-14 10:19 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
Stuartap - 2013-05-14 11:04 AM

For $1500 you should be able to get a CAAD 10 w/105.

Love it on paper, great rep- but I assumed it wouldn't be enough of a 'comfort fit' for longer rides of a couple of hours.

2013-05-14 10:29 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
bigbadbuff - 2013-05-14 8:19 AM
Stuartap - 2013-05-14 11:04 AM

For $1500 you should be able to get a CAAD 10 w/105.

Love it on paper, great rep- but I assumed it wouldn't be enough of a 'comfort fit' for longer rides of a couple of hours.

You may be right.  That was what a LOT of people recommended for me but I just wasn't comfortable on it.  Like I said, fit first.

 

2013-05-14 10:37 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
I'm just throwing this out there, but at that budget, you can buy a lightly used aluminum frame bike with awesome components.  It may take some looking, but I bought my first legit road bike for less than $1000 with full ultegra and carbon bars....caad 9.  May be worth looking around.  Now...this is all assuming you know what size you're looking for.
2013-05-14 11:00 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

jgerbodegrant - 2013-05-14 11:37 AM I'm just throwing this out there, but at that budget, you can buy a lightly used aluminum frame bike with awesome components. 

That was my first plan- they are proving really hard to come by in my area. Not many LBSs carry anything used and other local online resources aren't panning out. I have been looking for months, don't want to lose the summer waiting for the right one to come along, hence buying new now.



2013-05-14 11:29 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
bigbadbuff - 2013-05-14 12:00 PM

jgerbodegrant - 2013-05-14 11:37 AM I'm just throwing this out there, but at that budget, you can buy a lightly used aluminum frame bike with awesome components. 

That was my first plan- they are proving really hard to come by in my area. Not many LBSs carry anything used and other local online resources aren't panning out. I have been looking for months, don't want to lose the summer waiting for the right one to come along, hence buying new now.

Yeah....that's a bummer.  What size are you looking for?

2013-05-14 11:49 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
Isn't a triple better for hills than a compact crank- you have lower gears at your disposal, right?
2013-05-14 11:49 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

I got a Z85 last year and it was a great choice, i love the bike and how it handles on climbs! Nothing bad to say about it.

Good luck with your choice.

2013-05-14 11:55 AM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

Any reason you wouldn't include the Trek 2.1 in this mix?  Alum frame and carbon fork/stays, with 105 components.  Should be no problem finding one under $1500... and Trek dealers always have a spring/early summer sale that I believe is going on now.

I have a 2009 2.1 and love it.  Of all the models I tried (and I hit all the players in your list), the Trek was far and away my favorite.  To each his/her own, of course... but I would include that model in your options.

(ETA - and it should be available with EITHER a compact or Triple crank setup, depending on what you want)



Edited by Stillmanji 2013-05-14 11:56 AM
2013-05-14 12:06 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

chayes - 2013-05-14 12:49 PM Isn't a triple better for hills than a compact crank- you have lower gears at your disposal, right?

 

You have to pay close attention to the crank sizes and cassett options because alot of the times the the variety low gear options are at a cost of loseing high gears = super sucky for flater terrain.

I'm in the upstate NY adirondack region and I tested a triple thinking I'll need it for around here since I'm a beginner as well, but I hated it. Way too many really low gears I never used, and there weren't enough gears for flats (or going down hill).

I'm so much happier riding a compact as it has the appropriate gearing choices for my abilities. I also think its a better choice because it gives me room to grow with the bike as I become a better rider and my fitness improves.



2013-05-14 12:31 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

I have a Jamis Ventura Race that I use for Sprint races as well as the MS City to Shore ride (100 miles).

http://www.myjamis.com/SSP%20Applications/JamisBikes/MyJamis/consumer/bike.html?year=2013&model=Ventura%20Race&cat_grp=road_6

I'm just a shade under 5'10" and use a 56 frame and find it to be a comfortable bike. As for hills, your hills may be a higher grade than around Philly, but I haven't found myself needing anything beyond what came with the bike.

Just my .02

Good luck with your search.

junr

2013-05-14 12:40 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

How many have you ridden?

Have you had a bike fit?

Which shop do you like the most?

Do any of the shops offer better deals? (club member discount, or sales or free tune ups, ect)

2013-05-14 12:48 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
bigbadbuff - 2013-05-14 11:00 AM

jgerbodegrant - 2013-05-14 11:37 AM I'm just throwing this out there, but at that budget, you can buy a lightly used aluminum frame bike with awesome components. 

That was my first plan- they are proving really hard to come by in my area. Not many LBSs carry anything used and other local online resources aren't panning out. I have been looking for months, don't want to lose the summer waiting for the right one to come along, hence buying new now.

What size are you looking for and where are you located?  I have a used Scott Speedster S20 that I'm thinking of selling.  It's a 2009 model (barely ridden) that recently had a frame replaced under warranty due to cracked headtube.

2013-05-14 7:13 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying
KathyG - 2013-05-14 1:40 PM

How many have you ridden?

Have you had a bike fit?

Which shop do you like the most?

Do any of the shops offer better deals? (club member discount, or sales or free tune ups, ect)

I've ridden all except the Scott and BH. I have ridden the Trek 2.1 as well, someone above mentioned that bike. I did like it, I have a Trek hybrid and just felt like getting another brand.

I haven't had a bike fit to any particular bike, no. My plan is find the bike I want, and have the guy fitting me tell me what size to get.

No great deals going on at any of the shops unfortunately. REI sells Cannondale so the member rewards are about 10% which isn't bad.

2013-05-14 8:29 PM
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Subject: RE: Road bike indecision= annoying

I really like the Defy. I test rode one when buying my current road bike and it just sort of disappears beneath you. If you're out for comfort for the long haul, it's a great choice. The geometry on it is stellar for distance riding IMO. A compact crank with an 12-28 is a pretty nice set up, if you're planning on racing it, it's plenty of bike for that too.

 

I went for the TCR instead, but I wanted something primarily for racing and a more aggressive fit. That said, when I'm out for an epic 100 mile+ day in the saddle, I'd be lying if I said I didn't wish I had a Defy.



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