Looking for some road bike advice!

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Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby enigmatic » Sun Aug 11, 2013 6:30 pm

Hey guys

Pretty new here (and to cycling!) so I hope this is alright in this forum... was tossing up in buying a bike but looks like a mix of this one, and that one! Bear with my, I waffle a bit and would like to explain my situation!!

I have been cycling since the start of the year, minus 3 months for a broken collarbone (motorcycle related :P ). I bought a flat bar, a giant cross city 1, and I am really enjoying it! Do a few trails with friends (Warby, Yarra, Marybynong, Mullum ck) as well as a few road rides (Mount Dandy and Warrandyte-Kangaroo Ground from my place up the road).Does it all fine and I plan to keep it for a long time as a trail beasty...

However I took my old mans cannondale s1000l or something for a spin... and then yesterday a friends Giant tcr advanced 1 for about 50km. I really enjoyed it, and now seem to have been hit my upgraditis! Also went out with a friend on his mountain bikes the other week.. Also a lot of fun.

As I said, a spot of upgraditis. I would like to buy a drop bar, and have probably 2-2.5k to spend max. I would also like a mountain bike, but as I think it would see a lot less use than a roady... I don't know if I can justify it.

So as a result of my little story... I have two questions.

How much of a different will a drop bar make? I know I have ridden two now, but I have no log of how I went. THey felt nice, and I enjoyed the drops. Just compared to my cross city with the 105 bits on it... I am still slightly tempted by a mountain bike, but I do really enjoy road riding, and would keep the cross city as a trails bike, and rides with partner/friends.


Assuming a drop bar, looking for any recomendations!

With the run out specials, 2013 tcr advanced 1's are anywhere from about $2250. I have also heard the defy advanced is a bit more relaxed. Also have my eye on a cannondale caad10 ultegra for about the same. My friend has recomended getting at least ultegra bits, and after riding with them they are so nice and smooth!

I intend to keep this bike for a long time, and if I can get myself up to a fit enough level, will consider trying some racing (but that remains to be seen!)

So chasing any recomendations/advice!

Sorry for the long post, as I said, pretty new and chasing as much information as possible!

Cheers
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by BNA » Sun Aug 11, 2013 7:38 pm

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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby g-boaf » Sun Aug 11, 2013 7:38 pm

Don't worry about the Defy. TCR is perfectly comfortable with correct fit.

It's a very stable bike. A great all rounder. Mine is Advanced SL ISP.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby briztoon » Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:14 pm

I'm just going to paraphrase other members. If you plan on doing some racing, race a bike you can afford to trash and bin after a crash. If you can't afford to lose your bike in an accident, don't race on it.

Lots of bikes in your price range, have a look through and test ride as many as you can.
http://www.bikeexchange.com.au/bikes/li ... omens%5D=1
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby Farmer Elvis » Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:58 pm

3 years ago I was riding a flat bar giant, same story as you I ended up upgrading to a tcr advanced1 in 2011 I now race a bit, ride heaps more than I did a few years ago and enjoy it a lot more. My advice is buy the best bike you can afford, that's what I did, should've bypassed the flat bar and just bought the road bike! :wink:
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby enigmatic » Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:00 pm

Thanks for the quick replies!

briztoon wrote:I'm just going to paraphrase other members. If you plan on doing some racing, race a bike you can afford to trash and bin after a crash. If you can't afford to lose your bike in an accident, don't race on it.

Lots of bikes in your price range, have a look through and test ride as many as you can.
http://www.bikeexchange.com.au/bikes/li ... omens%5D=1


Thanks mate, that's the plan! I've been told most roadies over 2k will be 'good', just chasing opinions from others!

The racing words make sense! Haha. I am not sure what I will do, it's just a 'maybe' somewhere down the track!

g-boaf wrote:Don't worry about the Defy. TCR is perfectly comfortable with correct fit.

It's a very stable bike. A great all rounder. Mine is Advanced SL ISP.


Thanks! I really enjoyed my time on my mates tcr 1. Hands were a bit sore getting used to the hoods but were fine by the end!
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby g-boaf » Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:20 pm

The sore hands is probably just incorrect fit.

You can also use a few different grips on the handlebars as well.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby nickobec » Sun Aug 11, 2013 11:09 pm

Ride as many bikes as you can, try different groupsets, Shimano, SRAM, Campagnolo. People here swear by their Campagnolo shifters, I find the thumb shifters in the wrong place, I prefer SRAM because it just feels right to me.

Try a Defy or another bike with relaxed geometry, it might work for you, and you can still race it (other people do).

It is all about finding the right bike for you, and what is right for me might not be right for you.

Don't wait until you are "fit enough" to race, just go try it sooner, I wish I did.

I would like to say for $2.5k you could get a decent road and a decent MTB for that price, but I can't. You might get lucky in the 2nd hand market, but you need to know what you are looking for and find one in the right size, you could be wasting money. Get the roadie first, buy the accessories shoes, riding kit etc then start saving for a MTB for off road training and variety.

Ride at least one bike with 105 and make an informed decision that you want/need/don't need Ultegra ( or the SRAM or Campnologo equivalents).

In Australia, there is a lot of top end equipment (bikes, frames, group sets, wheels ) is use at races. If you went to Europe, you will find, at least in Dutch Crits and Kermesses, pretty ordinary bikes, running 105 group sets and alloy rims being used.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby jules21 » Mon Aug 12, 2013 12:57 pm

there is no correct answer to this. spend as much as you like. if you want to be an economic rationalist, you can get a decent road bike for $1.5k. i have done 15k+ on my 2008 Apollo Peleton with Tiagra groupset and WH-R500 wheels. if you're only starting to get into it, i'd probably ride away from you on my bike, no matter what model you buy. my bike has been a lot of fun and pretty bullet-proof. i bought an Ultegra-Di2 equipped race bike, for racing. otherwise i wouldn't have bothered - those few seconds difference mean nothing on a weekend ride. but it's a free country - if you like something and have the spendoolah, don't let anyone tell you how to spend it.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby enigmatic » Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:06 pm

Thanks for the replies :D

nickobec wrote:Ride as many bikes as you can, try different groupsets, Shimano, SRAM, Campagnolo. People here swear by their Campagnolo shifters, I find the thumb shifters in the wrong place, I prefer SRAM because it just feels right to me.

Try a Defy or another bike with relaxed geometry, it might work for you, and you can still race it (other people do).

It is all about finding the right bike for you, and what is right for me might not be right for you.

Don't wait until you are "fit enough" to race, just go try it sooner, I wish I did.

I would like to say for $2.5k you could get a decent road and a decent MTB for that price, but I can't. You might get lucky in the 2nd hand market, but you need to know what you are looking for and find one in the right size, you could be wasting money. Get the roadie first, buy the accessories shoes, riding kit etc then start saving for a MTB for off road training and variety.

Ride at least one bike with 105 and make an informed decision that you want/need/don't need Ultegra ( or the SRAM or Campnologo equivalents).

In Australia, there is a lot of top end equipment (bikes, frames, group sets, wheels ) is use at races. If you went to Europe, you will find, at least in Dutch Crits and Kermesses, pretty ordinary bikes, running 105 group sets and alloy rims being used.


Thanks mate for the extended and helpful reply! My plan is to ride as many bikes as I can, I m in no rush to buy as keen as I am, I still have the flat bar!! Just looking for any and all model suggestions/what has worked and what hasn't for others etc!

The plan is definitely to get a roady and then look at a MTB down the track, see how I go :)

That last bit is interesting! The guy I borrowed the tcr advanced 1 off... He certainly is not short of money so the advice I have been getting is certainly from the 'spending more is the way to go' side of things. I am by nature a tightass but I have learnt you get what you pay for... I am looking for the best compromise!


jules21 wrote:there is no correct answer to this. spend as much as you like. if you want to be an economic rationalist, you can get a decent road bike for $1.5k. i have done 15k+ on my 2008 Apollo Peleton with Tiagra groupset and WH-R500 wheels. if you're only starting to get into it, i'd probably ride away from you on my bike, no matter what model you buy. my bike has been a lot of fun and pretty bullet-proof. i bought an Ultegra-Di2 equipped race bike, for racing. otherwise i wouldn't have bothered - those few seconds difference mean nothing on a weekend ride. but it's a free country - if you like something and have the spendoolah, don't let anyone tell you how to spend it.


Thanks! As I wrote above, I don't like spending too much money, especially when I can't justify it. I have a motorbike for sale at the moment and the funds from that are going towards this! As above, looking for a great bike for a good price kind of things... I do realise spending more doesn't make you any better!

Thanks so far :)
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby g-boaf » Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:31 am

I say you should get the heavier frame! ;) I can't stand all these people with these 6kg frames. :P

My TCR Advanced SL3 is now 7.8kg with bidon cages and Garmin and the PSL0 wheels with GP4000s on them. A change of QR skewers saved a surprising amount of weight. :shock:

Don't be afraid to go for mechanical group set either instead of Di2. It will be lighter than Di2 - although Di2 shifting is great.

You could also go Chinese carbon.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby nickobec » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:53 pm

enigmatic wrote:That last bit is interesting! The guy I borrowed the tcr advanced 1 off... He certainly is not short of money so the advice I have been getting is certainly from the 'spending more is the way to go' side of things. I am by nature a tightass but I have learnt you get what you pay for... I am looking for the best compromise!


It does depend what you want from a bike, if you were buying your 2nd road bike and it was for riding not racing, I would say spend as much as you can afford to. There is a significant difference between a $500, a $1000, a $2000, a $4000 and an $8000 bike. Mind you the last $4k bike I rode a Scott CR1 Premium I hated (relaxed geometry and Ultegra Di2), the last $8k bike, a Scott Team Foil, I loved but could not justify over my $2k Fuji SL1 Comp with upgraded wheels, as the Fuji was faster over the same route on the same day.

As it is your first road bike I would suggest you could expect a 12 to 24 months use, before you decide that you need a bike that does X better. So you need to spend enough to get a decent bike, but not that much you will regret it when you change.

Also as you intend to race, the saying is don't race on Sunday what you can't afford to replace on Monday. Not that you will crash and destroy your bike racing, but it is a risk. I have more fear of crashing in mass participation rides and even commuting on a busy section of bike path than I do in a race.

enigmatic wrote:I do realise spending more doesn't make you any better!

Spending more money does make you faster, by being lighter, more aerodynamic. But is a law of diminishing returns, you have to keep spending a lot more to get very minor benefits.

You would get a lot more benefit by spending the money on a coach. You would see a benefit in going from a $1000 bike to a $2000 bike, but you would likely get a bigger benefit sticking with the $1000 bike and spending $500 on coaching.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby Calvin27 » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:36 pm

I was in roughly the same position - not interested in racing though.

Ended up going $1.6k for the roadie and $1k for the mountain bike. Both heavily discounted end of 2013 stock.

On the drop bars my first ride on them was about 120km pretty slow pace. Ended up with a sore back from weak core muscles (and a bruised hip from a slow mo clip stack). Been mountain biking most my life so I went for the MTB first - I spent less on it though as I use it less due to my location.
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby enigmatic » Thu Aug 15, 2013 11:42 am

Thanks fellas :)

nickobec wrote:
enigmatic wrote:That last bit is interesting! The guy I borrowed the tcr advanced 1 off... He certainly is not short of money so the advice I have been getting is certainly from the 'spending more is the way to go' side of things. I am by nature a tightass but I have learnt you get what you pay for... I am looking for the best compromise!


It does depend what you want from a bike, if you were buying your 2nd road bike and it was for riding not racing, I would say spend as much as you can afford to. There is a significant difference between a $500, a $1000, a $2000, a $4000 and an $8000 bike. Mind you the last $4k bike I rode a Scott CR1 Premium I hated (relaxed geometry and Ultegra Di2), the last $8k bike, a Scott Team Foil, I loved but could not justify over my $2k Fuji SL1 Comp with upgraded wheels, as the Fuji was faster over the same route on the same day.

As it is your first road bike I would suggest you could expect a 12 to 24 months use, before you decide that you need a bike that does X better. So you need to spend enough to get a decent bike, but not that much you will regret it when you change.

Also as you intend to race, the saying is don't race on Sunday what you can't afford to replace on Monday. Not that you will crash and destroy your bike racing, but it is a risk. I have more fear of crashing in mass participation rides and even commuting on a busy section of bike path than I do in a race.

enigmatic wrote:I do realise spending more doesn't make you any better!

Spending more money does make you faster, by being lighter, more aerodynamic. But is a law of diminishing returns, you have to keep spending a lot more to get very minor benefits.

You would get a lot more benefit by spending the money on a coach. You would see a benefit in going from a $1000 bike to a $2000 bike, but you would likely get a bigger benefit sticking with the $1000 bike and spending $500 on coaching.


Thanks again mate! I think I just need to clarify I really am just starting out, started in Feb this year, had an accident in April and only just starting again now. Racing is something of interest, but whether or not I will do it I am not sure...

For once in my life though, I am looking for something that I will grow into rather than what suits now!

Calvin27 wrote:I was in roughly the same position - not interested in racing though.

Ended up going $1.6k for the roadie and $1k for the mountain bike. Both heavily discounted end of 2013 stock.

On the drop bars my first ride on them was about 120km pretty slow pace. Ended up with a sore back from weak core muscles (and a bruised hip from a slow mo clip stack). Been mountain biking most my life so I went for the MTB first - I spent less on it though as I use it less due to my location.


Cheers mate! If and when I buy a mountain bike it will be along the same lines as you... But you never know what's around the next corner!
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Re: Looking for some road bike advice!

Postby enigmatic » Fri Aug 16, 2013 6:10 pm

Double posting, but I have another question!

I have gone to a few shops now, looked at a few giants but didn't have any stock to try :(

Rode a couple of Scotts as well. A foil 20 and a cr1. I preferred the more relaxed geometry, as the other gave me a bit of shoulder/neck pain but that's probably due to my collarbone injury.


Question time! A 'base' level carbon bike like these... How much of a different is it going to make over my cross city flat bar, which has a few bits of 105 on it? I like to justify what I buy so if it's not going to be a huge improvement, I am thinking perhaps a Mountain bike whilst I build up my fitness and decide if I want to race a roady or just get something for some weekend fun!

Cheers!
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