Deciding on a road bike



jisk

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Jan 9, 2005
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Okay, so I've looked around at a few places for a first road bike. I figure that I'll be getting a pretty entry level one as I don't know if I'll become competitive at all. I've been looking at:

TREK 1000, Sora groupset (appx NZ$1100)
Specialized Allez International, Sora groupset (appx $NZ1100)

The thing is, I rode some better bikes with 105 and ultegra groupsets, and now I'm having a problem with matching my (realistic) budget with what I want! The TREK 1400/1500s are NICE. So I'm thinking - is it better to get a new entry level bike, or get a secondhand bike with a 105 groupset for cheaper? There are Giant OCR1s and TREK 2000s to be had for around NZ$700 bucks.

If I get a secondhand bike would be around 4 - 5 years old. Has bike technology changed that much in a few years? Advice?
 

Insight Driver

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Jun 26, 2003
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jisk said:
Okay, so I've looked around at a few places for a first road bike. I figure that I'll be getting a pretty entry level one as I don't know if I'll become competitive at all. I've been looking at:

TREK 1000, Sora groupset (appx NZ$1100)
Specialized Allez International, Sora groupset (appx $NZ1100)

The thing is, I rode some better bikes with 105 and ultegra groupsets, and now I'm having a problem with matching my (realistic) budget with what I want! The TREK 1400/1500s are NICE. So I'm thinking - is it better to get a new entry level bike, or get a secondhand bike with a 105 groupset for cheaper? There are Giant OCR1s and TREK 2000s to be had for around NZ$700 bucks.

If I get a secondhand bike would be around 4 - 5 years old. Has bike technology changed that much in a few years? Advice?

I would suggest you look over and test-ride some of the used bikes you have looked at. With a new entry-level bike you will get new parts with current technology. The best things about new bikes are that you can get at least one free tune-up from the shop you bought it at. You have to be at least an average wrench to keep a bike tuned up. I've seen people screw things up that did not know what they were doing. I'm not saying you would, it's just that you are considering in the lowest bicyle shop tier entry level bike. To your credit you are looking in a shop rather than a department store bike. 105 and Ultegra groups are a bit easier to shift with compared to Sora. Any bike less than 4 years old should be pretty much up to date, but you have to know what things to check as far as wear are concerned since a new drivetrain is expensive and if a cassette or chainring is too worn, you would likely need a complete new drivetrain.
 

jisk

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Mmm, I'll keep that in mind. I'm looking at the reaaaal entry level road bikes because I don't really know how in to road biking I'd get. I don't want to buy an expensive piece of kit only to have it sit in the garage for months on end.
 

cali-largeguy

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Aug 26, 2005
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jisk said:
Okay, so I've looked around at a few places for a first road bike. I figure that I'll be getting a pretty entry level one as I don't know if I'll become competitive at all. I've been looking at:

TREK 1000, Sora groupset (appx NZ$1100)
Specialized Allez International, Sora groupset (appx $NZ1100)

The thing is, I rode some better bikes with 105 and ultegra groupsets, and now I'm having a problem with matching my (realistic) budget with what I want! The TREK 1400/1500s are NICE. So I'm thinking - is it better to get a new entry level bike, or get a secondhand bike with a 105 groupset for cheaper? There are Giant OCR1s and TREK 2000s to be had for around NZ$700 bucks.
If I get a secondhand bike would be around 4 - 5 years old. Has bike technology changed that much in a few years? Advice?
If you have a Performance Bike shop in your area check them out. They are in the process of liquidating their stock of Giant bikes as they are no longer going to be carrying Giant. Not sure why. You can get a Giant OCR 1 with Ultegra or 105's for about $1000 now. I got an OCR 2 in July with Tiagra shifters, 1 step up from Sora, and a 105 rear derailleur for $800 in July. Trust me, a little more spent now will alleviate you wanting to upgrade too soon. If you like to ride in general, you will probably like road riding. Just my $.02.
 

jisk

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Jan 9, 2005
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cali-largeguy said:
If you have a Performance Bike shop in your area check them out. They are in the process of liquidating their stock of Giant bikes as they are no longer going to be carrying Giant. Not sure why. You can get a Giant OCR 1 with Ultegra or 105's for about $1000 now. I got an OCR 2 in July with Tiagra shifters, 1 step up from Sora, and a 105 rear derailleur for $800 in July. Trust me, a little more spent now will alleviate you wanting to upgrade too soon. If you like to ride in general, you will probably like road riding. Just my $.02.
Cali, I'm in New Zealand - we don't have performance bike, and bikes are much more expensive =(
 

cali-largeguy

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Aug 26, 2005
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jisk said:
Cali, I'm in New Zealand - we don't have performance bike, and bikes are much more expensive =(
Sorry about that, didn't look at the location. Have you checked out ebay. Even with shipping you can get some great deals. Good luck
 

Adam-from-SLO

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Nov 30, 2003
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cali-largeguy said:
Sorry about that, didn't look at the location. Have you checked out ebay. Even with shipping you can get some great deals. Good luck

I second that ! Especially this time of year- Dec. to Feb/March.... you can get some seriously GREAT deals ! ;)
 

lumpy

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Oct 22, 2003
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I say check out a used bike. Used bikes IMHO have very little resale value so you could get an excellent bike with great components that's only a few years old and not break the bank.

;)
 

My_Aching_Fiets

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Jul 14, 2005
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lumpy said:
I say check out a used bike. Used bikes IMHO have very little resale value so you could get an excellent bike with great components that's only a few years old and not break the bank.
The only caution flag I'd wave at this suggestion is the possibility of a newbie overlooking a major flaw or defect in a used bike that a more experienced rider/buyer would easily catch.

A FerInstance would be loose bonding between carbon tubes. I doubt that many newbies would be astute enough to check for this type of thing. While I'm not completely dismissing your suggestion, I'd simply add a reminder to the original poster to bring a more experienced set of eyes along before making the final purchase.
 

bomber

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Dec 18, 2001
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jisk said:
Mmm, I'll keep that in mind. I'm looking at the reaaaal entry level road bikes because I don't really know how in to road biking I'd get. I don't want to buy an expensive piece of kit only to have it sit in the garage for months on end.

Components in order of importance

  1. Frame
  2. Wheels
  3. Groupset
  4. Finishing Kit

i wouldnt by second hand as at you price level bikes are made to last therefore if its being sold on its knackered or uncared for through lack of use. best bet is to see if you can buy older models (ie 2004/5) new from local bike shops.

At university i trained/raced a trek 1000 with sora for 4 years without problems. its a case of caring for your kit and ensuring its set up correctly.
 

jisk

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Jan 9, 2005
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bomber said:
Components in order of importance


  1. Frame
  2. Wheels
  3. Groupset
  4. Finishing Kit
Wheels over groupset? Really? I never really thought about the type of wheel, and I don't know much about what is good and what is not... do you have any tips?

Also, what is finishing kit?


bomber said:
At university i trained/raced a trek 1000 with sora for 4 years without problems. its a case of caring for your kit and ensuring its set up correctly.

Well that makes me feel better about looking at the sora stuff. Most LBS guys tend to say "105 is where it's at", although a couple have said that sora would be okay to start.


Cheers.
 

Sprint2Win

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Oct 31, 2004
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I think a poor shifting and braking bike has turned alot of people away from cycling. I would place those at the top of the list.
If it won't shift correctly or brake easily, who wants the frustration.
The lower end components won't shift great, even when they are set up the best they can possibly be.
 

bomber

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Dec 18, 2001
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Sprint2Win said:
I think a poor shifting and braking bike has turned alot of people away from cycling. I would place those at the top of the list.
If it won't shift correctly or brake easily, who wants the frustration.
The lower end components won't shift great, even when they are set up the best they can possibly be.

have you ever used sora? there is nothing poor shifting or braking about it as a groupset!! I now ride a Trek Madone with ultegra so i know a bit about the difference in feel and quality and although perceptable its not such a world apart especially if you take the time and care to set a bike up correctly in the first place.

people bang on about dura ace and ultegra and you get new people coming to the sport thinking how on earth can i justify shelling out thousands of dollars for a bicycle. then they start to wonder where is the value in a bike... and the lbs chips in "105 is where its at" when all it means to them is $$ not bums on saddles. Sora is plenty capableand the difference in shifting mechanism is often better for someone new to cycling who wont spend huge amounts of time in the drops of the handle bars.

get the best frame and wheels you can and the groupset can be decided by your budget. As for the finishing kit which is handle bars, stem, seat post and saddle again can be decided by budget.

sometimes the best value can be found in complete bikes from major brands such as trek, specialised. just look after it and it will go forever.
 

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