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Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hey guys,

I'm new here and pretty new to touring as well... Coming to ask the experts for some help

So far I’ve been doing some 50-70km day trips over weekends and I ride to work every day (20km round trip) – and would like to get into some more serious touring – doing to 2-3 days trips occasionally and in a few months I want to ride from Melbourne to Sydney (~1,000km coz I don’t want to do it via the highway), and the Great Ocean Rd (~400km).


Right now I ride an entry level mountain bike (Shogun Trailbreaker II), which is awright for the city, but I want to buy a bike that’d be more suitable for touring.

So… I’ve had a look and got to the conclusion that I want a relatively light bike, strong, and that would have at least the eyelets for a back pannier (I don’t think I’ll do much self supported touring).

The two bikes that caught my eye are the Specialized Sequoia Elite (http://www.freedommachine.com.au/frame_welcome.htm) and the Giant OCR Tourer (http://www.cycleworks.com.au/pages/default.cfm?page_id=15613#72792).

Pro and Cons?
The Specialized has carbon seat stays and fork – is it actually a good thing or a bad thing? Would it be as strong as aluminum? (I’m not a heavy rider, I weigh less than 50kg, and when touring probably won’t carry more than max 15-20kg). I don’t like the suspension seat pole and will change it to a plain aluminum/carbon one. The tires seem too skinny as well (25mm) and will have to be changed. The groupset is a 105 like the OCR Tourer.

And the OCR… it’s about a grand cheaper. The guy at the shop said that it won’t be a problem to change the brakes from disk breaks to Shimano v-breaks. But I couldn’t find much info about the OCR Tourer, the shop that sells it doesn’t have the full specifications online, and I can’t find any 2005 OCR Tourers, not even at Giant’s website, and it doesn’t look like the previous models. The OCR has eyelets for front panniers as well, so if one day I’ll decide to go on a full on touring experience I’ll be able to with no qualms (but then again, I don’t think that there’s a strong chance that it’ll happen, and worse case scenario I’d always be able to put a different for on the Sequoia…)

As you can see I’m a very confused puppy… which do you reckon would be a better bike for some touring and daily commuting?

Thanks heaps,
A confused begginer
post #2 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

i only have a few minutes at the moment. in short, neither is actually a touring bike, despite the company's advertising copy. you need to look at the frame geometry. for now, check out some of the other threads in this forum.

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t277140...his-sport.html

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t260357...e-and-why.html

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t261005...ke-set-up.html

and others
as well as http://www.cyclingforums.com/reviews/index.php?cat=1
and also:
http://www2.trekbikes.com/Bikes/Spec.../520/index.php

http://www.fujibikes.com/2005/bikes.asp?id=22
http://www.cannondale.com/bikes/05/cusa/cats/TO.html
http://www.bianchiusa.com/570.html

hope this helps for now
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

Hi there,

Thanks heaps for your help and your time. It's heaps of info and I'll have a good read:-)

Just after having a quick look at the some of the links - would the Sequoia Elite not be a good enough bike for some light touring, assuming it's a comfy bike and I won't need front panniers? Is there a problem with having carbon seatstays and fork for long rides (mostly 100km ones, but someday I want to do some 500-1000km ones), carrying myself (~50kg) and some stuff in 2 rear panniers (~10-20kg)?

Cheers,
Netta


Quote:
Originally Posted by philso
i only have a few minutes at the moment. in short, neither is actually a touring bike, despite the company's advertising copy. you need to look at the frame geometry. for now, check out some of the other threads in this forum.

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t277140...his-sport.html

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t260357...e-and-why.html

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t261005...ke-set-up.html

and others
as well as http://www.cyclingforums.com/reviews/index.php?cat=1
and also:
http://www2.trekbikes.com/Bikes/Spec.../520/index.php

http://www.fujibikes.com/2005/bikes.asp?id=22
http://www.cannondale.com/bikes/05/cusa/cats/TO.html
http://www.bianchiusa.com/570.html

hope this helps for now
post #4 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

I've owned a Sequoia Elite for several months now, and admire the bike enormously. Its carbon fork, seatstays, and seatpost seem very strong, and make for an extraordinarily stable, comfortable ride--as good as my old Trek 520, which was marketed as a "serious" touring bike.

It has dropouts for a rear rack, which I've installed. I'd not hesitate to do light touring on this bike. I might install 700x28 tires in place of the 700x25's that come with the bike, but I've talked to some people who go everywhere on the 25's without incident.
post #5 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

hi, back again with a bit of free time.

about the sequoia elite. it looks like a very nice fitness bike. it may be fine for some light touring, but i think that there a a number of drawbacks that you should be aware of.

first off, i've never ridden a bike with carbon forks or seat stay inserts. however, aluminum frames are more stiff than chro-moly steel. the carbon probably helps to offset this. you might get a softer ride on a steel frame with big savings on the price tag. steel's other advantage is that it's repairable and will last your lifetime. there's a huge debate about the longevity of aluminum. not being an engineer, the data on both sides sounds plausable. aluminum's detractors say they may only be good 5 or so years. proponents say there's no problem. i'veard from people riding for 7 - 8 years with no frame problems. for more info, see this thread: http://www.cyclingforums.com/t277604...aluminum-.html

for potential drawbacks:

- wheels: 20 spokes is asking for problems. standard for touring is 36 to spread the weight more evenly over the rims. some touring bike even use 40 spokes in the rear wheel. if money is no problem, you could get another set of hubs and rims specifically for touring. believe me, repairing spokes on a tour is a real hassle. being able to replace spokes well enough to ride to the next town is pretty much a required skill. practicing on a junk rim is recommended

- chain stays are rather short. in this respect the bianchi volpe is also borderline. look around for panniers that are as big as you think you'll ever need, try them on the bike, and see if you'll be hittng them with your heels. smaller panniers or a shorter crankset may be a way around this.

- wheelbase is rather short also, but if your loads are light and small, borderline ok

- 30/42/52T up front looks fine to me, but a lot of people like a smaller set it depends on how hilly your terrain is going to be. you mention light touring, so you're probably fine.
- you probably will want to change the 12-25 rear cluster to one with a large cog somewhere around 30 or 32 teeth in the rear.

- you'll want to change the tire to ones rather wider and beefier.

- check for fender(mudguard) clearance

if you're sure you'll only be doing "light" tours, this bike looks otherwise ok if you get a different set of wheels, a rear cluster with a wider set of cogs, and maybe an extra couple of chainrings. however, don't discount getting sucked into this sport. it happened to me, and it can happen to you.
post #6 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

in your area, check out:


http://www.bikenow.com.au/bikes/bike...ndale/t800.htm

http://www.bikenow.com.au/bikes/bike...dale/t2000.htm

looked at cbd cycles. a lot of hype but, but no specs about their bike available online. sounds like a dubious place to shop. also, they only carry giant

http://www.cecilwalker.com.au/webcontent12.htm carry trek and cannondale bikes

http://www.onecer.net/abbotsfordcycl...ock/index.html homepage could use some work, but they appear to carry touring bikes. what makers are unclear.

shm bikes had a prticularly uniformative webpage, though there was a flash of a guy on touring bike

nothing special at freedom machine

http://www.thcycles.com.au/index.php looks like a decent bike shop, at least on-line. they don't have touring bikes, but are a trek dealer. maybe worth checking out http://www.trekbikes.com.au/catalogu...&product_id=16

gotta go. hope this helps
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

Thanks guys for all the info.
I'm going to test ride a cannondale and the sequoia, not a big fan of trek. I think I might wait for the 2006 models to get to Australia coz I saw that specialized have a new touring type bike that looks better (32mm tyres, more spokes - but only a double chainring that would have to be changed....).
If I will go with the Sequoia it'll be with a few changes. I've already got my panniers and there shouldn't be a problem with them coz my current bike's even smaller and it's alright.
I'll probably change the breaks, the seat post and the tyres - I don't think the small numbers of spokes should be a problem, coz I'm a pretty tiny person and never carry much - even when we went for a weekend away and I carried everything (for my partner and me, and it included a wine bottle, cd's and other things that we don't usually take when going away:-)) it all fitted in my little 2 Dueter panniers.

Thanks heaps again,
Netta




Quote:
Originally Posted by philso
in your area, check out:


http://www.bikenow.com.au/bikes/bike...ndale/t800.htm

http://www.bikenow.com.au/bikes/bike...dale/t2000.htm

looked at cbd cycles. a lot of hype but, but no specs about their bike available online. sounds like a dubious place to shop. also, they only carry giant

http://www.cecilwalker.com.au/webcontent12.htm carry trek and cannondale bikes

http://www.onecer.net/abbotsfordcycl...ock/index.html homepage could use some work, but they appear to carry touring bikes. what makers are unclear.

shm bikes had a prticularly uniformative webpage, though there was a flash of a guy on touring bike

nothing special at freedom machine

http://www.thcycles.com.au/index.php looks like a decent bike shop, at least on-line. they don't have touring bikes, but are a trek dealer. maybe worth checking out http://www.trekbikes.com.au/catalogu...&product_id=16

gotta go. hope this helps
post #8 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

Hi there,

I've been riding a Sequioa for the last couple of months. I love it - previously I was riding a ropey old 26 inch wheel folder (dahon expresso - fine but not really up for touring, however light), and the Sequoia is a major improvement. I'm yet to take it any distance but plan on a series of three or four day rides covering reasonably large distances - London to Paris has been the extent of my distance riding to date.

The downside with the Sequoia is that the wheels are really not up to carrying somebody of my build - I weigh around 95 kg (at 6ft a little overweight for my height), and I have broken three spokes already. However, the bike shop have been fine and have simpy upgraded me to a set of Mavic Open Pros (36 spokes and pretty tough looking so far). I also tried the Cannondale T800 (a "proper tourer") but didn't like it - compared to the Sequoia it was a leaden and pretty joyless ride.

Personally I'd stick with the bouncy seat post - it irons out the bumps and is pretty un-intrusive (It also protects the frame from jolts if you hit a pot-hole). Given your weight I reckon the wheels will probably be fine for you and you ought to be able to carry fifteen or twenty kgs without coming close to bending the bike. I'd also think about keeping the wheels as they are (unless you can wangle an up-grade) - 25mm wheels give a much easier and faster ride and with the carbon forks and bouncy seat-post you wont get shaken around too much.

Happy riding,

Stew.
post #9 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

Have been riding a Sequoia Elite for a couple of years now. I bought it for Randonneur and can attest to the "mid range" quality of the bike. I do think the wheelbase is a bit short and I have upgraded the wheels to a more bulletproof design after a blown spoke. That happened close to home so not a major problem but it could have been a major inconvenience in the middle of nowhere. I now feel very secure.

The Sequoia is billed as a sport touring bike which one dealer described to me as touring with a credit card. Two panniers and a well loaded rack on two bikes gave my wife and I a very comfortable camping touring holiday up the Sunshine
Coast of BC and over to Vancouver Island. We had a blast and the stock gears were just fine.

We are planning several more such tours locally including a road/ferry B&B tour from Vancouver to Seattle for the July 1 long weekend.

As you may be able to tell I am not a bike technologist, just an enthusiast who loves being out on the road. Bike geometry and other subtleties are lost on me. I just want reliability and function. The Ultegra components are the best and smoothest I have ever owned so for me I feel I am travelling in luxury. (My winter commuter is a 25 year old CroMoly Sekine).

Oh by the way I just changed the seat to an Italia road bike seat and moved the wider stock Sequoia seat to my wifes bike. We are both happier now.
post #10 of 10

Re: Giant OCR Tourer VS. Specialized Sequoia Elite

I'm on the 3rd year with my Sequoia Elite and love the comfort. The body geometry handlebars are great also. I got it for sagged/light touring and will be giving it the first shot at a week long tour this summer. I'm a medium size rider and have had no wheel issues at all. I did upgrade the seat post to a carbon with zerts and the seat, but otherwise it is stock.
I don't know if they have made it to your area yet but I would also check out the Specialized Tricross which is new this year. It is very similar but has wider tires and front rack fork mounts if you ever need them. I haven't ridden one but it would be worth checking out. Otherwise I don't think you can go wrong with the Sequoia for what you are looking for. Good luck!
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