Comfort V Performance

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Comfort V Performance

Postby hillrider7 » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:46 pm

I went into a couple of bike shops today to look at buying a new, proper drop bar road bike, as I have previously been using a badly fitted flat bar bike. I am not looking for something that will cost me $3k, but I want something that's a bit more fun and will let me cover longer distances, especially in the Adelaide hills.

The main bikes I had a look at today were a Cannondale Alloy Synapse 105 and an Avanti Giro 3, while I've also been looking at maybe getting something in the Merida Race Lite or Ride Lite series (because I might be able to get Merida bikes at a cheaper price because of some connections).

My main concern is that the Cannondale and Avanti that I was shown today are both designed to increase comfort for the rider, with slightly more upright riding position and so on. I've heard that they are also good performing bikes, but I'm concerned that they may have compromised performance slightly to increase comfort.

My main question: is it worth buying one of these bikes with slightly more comfort, so I can better enjoy longer rides, or will I be compromising performance? What would you guys buy in the $1000- $2000 range?

Also, when I went into the shop today they said that a good entry level price would be at least $1000, closer to $1500. I know you can get bikes for cheaper than this, but are they so bad its not worth it? I don't want to buy second-hand either...
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by BNA » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:58 am

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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby nickdos » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:58 am

The whole comfort vs performance thing comes down to aerodynamics. For someone starting out with a road bike, I think its safe to say there would be negligible difference in ride times for an agressive versus relaxed frame. I would suggest starting with a more relaxed geometry, coming from a flat bar, as it will be more comfortable and you'll enjoy riding it more (you can't just start riding an aggressive frame, you have to work up to it). If you stick with it, you'll likely want to upgrade most of the gear on your bike after a few years, at which point, you're better off getting a new bike (with more agressive geometry if required).
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby rangersac » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:13 am

Hillrider, as nickdos has pointed out the main question is what do you want to get out of the bike. If you are looking for sheer performance then go for something with a more aggressive geometry profile in the frame, i.e a lower riding position. However unless you are planning on seriously racing I'd opt for the more relaxed frames you have specified. You will still get much more performance from your new steed than you got from a badly fitted flat bar. And a slighly less aggressive riding position will make longer hill rides that bit more comfortable. Otherwise you run the risk of putting yourself off doing a long ride in the first place.

Also, when I went into the shop today they said that a good entry level price would be at least $1000, closer to $1500


Again depends what you want the bike for. For $1000 to $1500 you will generally get a decent alloy or cheap carbon frame, a good level of componentry (105/ Ultegra/ Veloce) and a heavy but solid wheelset. If all you want it for is to enjoy long hill rides with a good level of performance that's more than enough. However if you want to go down the weight weenie/ racing route then start adding plenty more $ks to that figure.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby bianchi928 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:43 am

Check out the Trek Domane. They come in different range/specs so price may be in your budget. Also, if your in the hills, look at compact cranks.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby high_tea » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:47 am

For what you describe, I can't see the performance difference between the bikes you mention mattering a lick. Pick tge one that you like the most, honestly. I would rather aluminium than carbon, but that's me.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby open roader » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:32 pm

hillrider7 wrote:What would you guys buy in the $1000- $2000 range?


Amongst the contenders I'd be considering a Giant Defy 1 (Shimano 105 spec) excellent proven relaxed geometry frameset and worth keeping until it dies. A used Specialized Roubaix frameset is also another relaxed geometry bike I'd recommend.

Motivation (to ride) comes in many forms - we are all different. I seek comfort in my ride where ever I can. Tyres can transform the ride of a bike and are a relatively inexpensive way to improve ride comfort levels. If you get off the bike unhappy it's likely to take the edge off your motivation to get back on it.........
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby jacks1071 » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:01 pm

I recommend focusing a lot more on a bike that fits you properly rather than one with a "comfort" marketing tag slapped on it.

A properly setup and fitting bike = comfort + performance.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby _mike_ » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:42 pm

+1

Im no faster on my avanti quantum as i was on my 'comfort' geometry giro. The former has ~1.5cm more seat/bar drop, corners tighter and feels better in a sprint.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:11 am

I ride a unicycle. Neither comfort nor performance enter into it. :lol:
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby RonK » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:13 am

ColinOldnCranky wrote:I ride a unicycle. Neither comfort nor performance enter into it. :lol:

Oh, you mean the unicycle is both uncomfortable and slow Colin? :) :) :)
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby kb » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:38 am

ColinOldnCranky wrote:I ride a unicycle. Neither comfort nor performance enter into it. :lol:

Don't you mean every ride is a performance?
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby jacks1071 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 10:09 am

_mike_ wrote:+1

Im no faster on my avanti quantum as i was on my 'comfort' geometry giro. The former has ~1.5cm more seat/bar drop, corners tighter and feels better in a sprint.


Flip the stem up on a lot of bikes and thats the difference between their performance and endurance/comfort geometry.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby Dave R32 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 10:13 am

jacks1071 wrote:I recommend focusing a lot more on a bike that fits you properly rather than one with a "comfort" marketing tag slapped on it.

A properly setup and fitting bike = comfort + performance.


+1

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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby RonK » Sat Jan 19, 2013 10:56 am

jacks1071 wrote:
_mike_ wrote:+1

Im no faster on my avanti quantum as i was on my 'comfort' geometry giro. The former has ~1.5cm more seat/bar drop, corners tighter and feels better in a sprint.


Flip the stem up on a lot of bikes and thats the difference between their performance and endurance/comfort geometry.

Oh? My observation is that so-called comfort bikes typically have longer headtubes.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby Riggsbie » Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:06 am

Don't forget the Roubaix style bikes.....

I have a duff back but opted for a Specialised Roubaix and added a shortened 16degree stem and also fitted a gel seat.....I rotated the bars up a bit as well.....

It works for me and is still pretty fast, it does look a bit dorky but still goes well !




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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby jacks1071 » Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:29 pm

RonK wrote:
jacks1071 wrote:
_mike_ wrote:+1

Im no faster on my avanti quantum as i was on my 'comfort' geometry giro. The former has ~1.5cm more seat/bar drop, corners tighter and feels better in a sprint.


Flip the stem up on a lot of bikes and thats the difference between their performance and endurance/comfort geometry.

Oh? My observation is that so-called comfort bikes typically have longer headtubes.


Exactly - point the stem upwards and you've got the equilivant of a longer head tube (or cut the steerer a little longer..)
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby _mike_ » Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:37 pm

Yes thats right, which is the point I was making with regards to the fit between the same size frames (56.5) in avantis performance and comfort frames. Wheelbase and head angles are obviously different hence the handling difference. I did need to slide the saddle way forward on the quantum 3 to get an identical bb to saddle using a plumb-bob . Probably a different post offset too

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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby gururug » Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:52 pm

I change my stem in a 2 cm length and height range depending on how fit I am. Go for something in the middle or more comfort orientated me thinks, it's easier to make a bike more aggressive than less.
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Sun Jan 20, 2013 11:00 pm

RonK wrote:
ColinOldnCranky wrote:I ride a unicycle. Neither comfort nor performance enter into it. :lol:

Oh, you mean the unicycle is both uncomfortable and slow Colin? :) :) :)


kb wrote:
ColinOldnCranky wrote:I ride a unicycle. Neither comfort nor performance enter into it. :lol:

Don't you mean every ride is a performance?


Oh you guys are so droll. I suppose this is the cross that we who dare to travel a different road must bear. :mrgreen:
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Re: Comfort V Performance

Postby thejester » Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:40 am

gururug wrote:I change my stem in a 2 cm length and height range depending on how fit I am. Go for something in the middle or more comfort orientated me thinks, it's easier to make a bike more aggressive than less.


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