post #46 of 153
7/29/04 at 1:29am
Originally Posted by rrborg
I have been looking at road bikes for a few weeks now (felt f-60, specialized elite, trek 1500). Now I am thinking about getting the Windsor Kennet, so far everyone seems to say nothing but good things. I guess my question is are there any downsides to this bike? After checking out a few LBS in my area and test riding bikes that were about the same price as this but have nowhere near the level of components I just keep waiting for the catch. I mean are there any other bikes out there comparable to the price/performance of the Kennet?
My only other concern is fit, I was pretty comfortable on a 60cm Felt-F60 (I'm about 6' 2" 195) that I test rode today just wondering if fit is comparable to other bikes I might be able to actually test ride for size since this would be my first road bike (been mountain biking for a while), little leary of not riding it before hand.
Originally Posted by mayo63
Good to hear all the positive responses everyone has for their Windsors. I bought a Windsor Fens that is currently being assembled so I can't comment on the ride just yet but, the features and value of the bike was too good to pass on. Ritchey Bar, Stem and Post, Ritchey OCR ProDS Aero Rim wheelset, Ultegra everything, Double Butted 7005 Aluminum frameset, Michelin Tires, Free Ultralight Road Pedals, Kenesis Carbon Taper Fork, Shimano 105 shifters all for $725. The MSRP was $1,395. Though I was only looking for an entry level road bike I feel like I got a great deal. I'm with the rest of you with the only concern being lack of contact numbers on warranty issues. It's still nice to know that their are other owners of Windsors out there and we have a forum where we can talk about our bikes. I'm all for starting a Windsor bike club.
Originally Posted by Hairguie
I am considering the Fens right now. I am 5 ft. 7 inches tall with a 30 inch inseam. I am looking at the 56 cm Fens. Can you give me any info on this? The chart says it will fit me but I am still concerned. Where did you buy yours and how is it so far? thanks for any info you can give me.
Originally Posted by Rick Reas
The continually growing interest in Windsor's is really cool. My Kennet is still performing wonderfully. The Fens looks like a nice bike too.
For what it's worth, here are some thoughts about size. I'm 5'8" with a 31.5 in seam. Any 56 cm bike I've tried has been too tall-no clearance above the top tube (which is a potentially catastrophic matter.) And the top tube on a 56 is also way too long for me-making for a long and uncomfortable reach (but probably very aero.) My Kennet is a 52 and is the best fit I've ever had on a bike. I'd highly recommend testing 52's, 54's and maybe even a 56 at a local shop before ordering. Some shops will even offer a very thorough fitting analysis. My local shop did, even though I was buying via mail order, since I get all my service and buy lots of accessories from the shop. As mentioned previously, I've found the sizing of Windsors to be identical to that of Fuji and very similar to Trek aluminum bikes. So riding one of those could give you a good sense of what the Windsor will be.
Out of curiosity, are you buying from BikesDirect? My experience with them was very good. And the fact that I was able to stop in at one of their shops (in Arizona) before ordering my bike reassured me that they indeed know bikes. While I have become a big Windsor fan, I also tested a very nice Mercier at BikesDirect and the deal they have on the 2005 Mercier Serpens is incredible. Components are a mix of 105 and Ultegra with lots of nice Ritchey parts and the carbon fiber seatstays are a great feature. It's $60 more than the Fens (and doesn't include pedals), but I'd be really tempted to grab it instead of the Fens. I'd be very interested in what you decide to do. Good luck.
Originally Posted by pnorrod
I had the good fortune to find that some of the bikes sold through bikesdirect.com sometimes appear for sale on eBay through bikesdirectdotcom and chicabike. I happened to see that chicabike had 2 new 62 cm Windsor Kennets at the "Buy Now" price of $960 + $35 shipping = $995. That is my size, so I bought one. It was shipped the next day and arrived a few days later in a box from ... bikesdirect.com from Texas!
I put it together and checked everything very carefully. I only found two problems - the first (and worst) was that when whoever assembled the rear derailleur partly cross-threaded it into the hanger and as a result the derailleur was quite crooked. Fortunately, I took the hanger off and was able to screw the derailleur in from the back to chase the threads back the way they should be. I was able to then assemble it properly - it tightened up fine.
While I had the rear apart, I used my Park rear derailleur alignment tool to check the alignment of the hanger to the wheel - it was a little off, but not bad. I tweaked it a little and now everything is perfect. I crashed my old bike about a year ago and bent the hanger - that is why I bought the Park tool. Once I used the tool on the old bike, it shifted better and ran quieter than ever before - which makes me wonder how out of alignment the hanger was from the factory? That is why I checked the Windsor out - I wonder how many other bikes (of any brand) have misaligned hangers?
The second "problem" was that the seatpost that came was a 27.0 when the tube is for a 27.2. The 27.0 fit in there a little loose, but I was able to clamp it tight without problem. It turned out that I have a 27.2 that I wanted to use anyway, so I ended up not using the supplied post.
Okay, minor problems aside, this is an very nice bike! Quite light (at least compared to my Raleigh 600) and the carbon front and rear really do help absorb those sharp bumps in the road. I only have about 100 miles on it so far, but I have really enjoyed those 100 and look forward to thousands more. I can't say that I like the color scheme, but once you are riding it you don't notice the color anyway.
One of the plusses of owning a Kennet is riding something different than the masses - it has already drawn questions from those I ride with. I don't think I will tell anyone what it cost - I'll just let them think it cost twice what it actually did