Giant or Merckx

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by danleik, Dec 12, 2003.

  1. danleik

    danleik New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2003
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Looking to buy a new bike. Current: GT ZR2000, aluminum. Harsh ride.
    Choices I'm considering are the Giant Composite TCR 0 (carbon) or the Eddy Merckx Team SC (scandium aluminum).
    I'm looking for a more comfortable ride but still light and quick. I crashed this summer and broke a hip and I'm still somewhat nervous, so I'd like a bike that handles well.
    I know some may turn their nose up at Giant, but it sure seems to produce some winners. The Giant price is also incredible (complete bike through local dealer with DA 10 speed, ksyerium sl's and Time mag pedals is $3500--compare that to say a Colnago C40 which is $3500 just for the frame/fork) A complete Merckx seems to be going for well over $4 grand on the internet.
    Are we talking nuance here, or are there really some differences that makes one bike significantly better than the other?
    I've read some glowing reviews on both bikes; of course usually the reviewer owns the bike he's praising.
    Is the Giant really a good deal, or do you get what you pay for; i.e an inferior carbon. Or are Merckx and its European ilk (Colnago et al) just overpriced snobbery?
     
    Tags:


  2. dhk

    dhk New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2003
    Messages:
    2,259
    Likes Received:
    0

    If you're ready to spend $3500 or more on a bike, I'd suggest taking time to research and test ride all the major brands for yourself. There are definately "nuances" of ride difference, but fine rides from all the major manufacturers at this price: Giant, Trek, Cannondale, Lemond, as well as the high-end Euro labels.
    Also, you can get a custom-built bike from a number of builders for this kind of money.

    Not sure what you want to hear, but I'd pick the Team SC over the Giant. High-end Easton american tubing, carbon seat stays, great looking paint job and a dash of Euro style. Should be comfortable and fast. But, I haven't ridden either bike; just what I'd buy with your money!

    If you consider a limited production frame from a famous euro maker to be high-end snobbery, then pass them by. If you like the style, the idea of Ernesto or Ugo building your frame, and are prepared to pay some extra for limited-production exclusivity, then go for it!

    Dan
     
  3. danleik

    danleik New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2003
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, Dan.
     
  4. ewitz

    ewitz New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2003
    Messages:
    81
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think you are right with regards to the euro snobbery. Buy the giant and save yourself some money. 2.1 pounds for frame and fork, hard to beat. a ride that is as good as the alu with none of the downside. at this level of bike nothing you get will be bad, but ther giant is exceptional. and at the end of the day if you hate it you've got a full da gruppo and a set of k's. the giant has a high resale value so you just transfer the parts. but i know that it will not come to that.
     
  5. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2003
    Messages:
    5,133
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have yet to know of one that is crash proof. The Giant is great bang for the buck, and not really a case of just getting what you pay for.Merckx along with alot of the European stuff is nice and somethng different,but overpriced. Have heard nothing bad about the Giant,but people are either hot or cold on the Merckx.As another said, when spending this kind of money you had better know what you want rather than going on subjective interned opinion. Custom is also certainly a viable option...considerd a Calfee CF?
     
  6. pudster

    pudster New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Messages:
    179
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would not buy a scandium frame if you are going to keep it for along time. Most scandium frames have a short lifetime and are not a good way to go. The resale value on them is not very good either. Some frames that say scandium are not all scandium and some scandium frames are not Easton. I am sure the Merck,s frame is all scandium. Check out the warranty if going with scandium and find out what tubes are scandium.
     
  7. blip

    blip New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    0
    My five cents worth is that I splashed out on a Merckx SC. It was after much deliberation and the riding of MANY different bikes. Initially the Merckx with all the bells and whistles zipp wheels etc etc was going to seriously blow my budget. I managed to get it in my price range by a whisker from my local bike shop. It was, for me the best of all the bikes i rode. It felt better than some more expensive bikes that i rode purely for some kind of yardstick. I did not rode the Giant bike in question but can tell you from 3 months of ownership The Merckx is not just a badge you pay for, it is an amazing bike. I have raced in many longer races this year up to 230kms and various shorter distances and Fast Eddie as it is know has seriously made me a better rider. You DO get what you pay for with a Merckx. That is not to cast dispersions on a Giant who do make fine bikes but if I were to do it again I would not change a thing.

    Regarding the longevity of Scandium, mine is purely a race bike with an older bike as the trainer. I doubt that scandium would be much less fatigue resistant than any other frame material you care to mention. It will wear out but I would be surprised if it were before time.

    A valid point in all of this is that it is not the machine but the motor. If you were to put a European Pro on a 15 kilogram K-Mart special he would still kick everybody's arse.

    Good luck,

    p.s The paint job is something else with stencilled lettering, no stickers anywhere.
     
  8. danleik

    danleik New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2003
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for your input.
    Problem is I have no local dealer who carries Merckx. My local guy carries Giant. He drops everything and fixes my bike for me as needed. He takes me on long hard rides. He gives me good deals. So maybe I have to compromise a bit, but such is the price of loyalty.
    You're right anyway, Australia, ultimately its not about the bike.

    By the way, this site is great. Some pretty knowledgeable people out there.
     
  9. yayaya

    yayaya New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2003
    Messages:
    76
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have not ridden a Merckx but I do own a Giant composite. Before the Giant I rode a Waterford custom steel bike. The Waterford had a smooth ride (not to say the Giant dosent) but lacked the responsviness that I love so much about the Giant. I think you cant go wrong with either bike. Like I said before I havent ridden a Merckx but friends of mine who have love thiers. Either way good choice.
     
  10. BaCardi

    BaCardi New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Messages:
    638
    Likes Received:
    0
    What do you base your broad generalizations on? Experience? HA! :D


    OMG! :eek: What a revelation. Duh!
     
  11. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2003
    Messages:
    5,133
    Likes Received:
    0
    Try reading it again genius.
     
  12. BaCardi

    BaCardi New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Messages:
    638
    Likes Received:
    0
    I guess the guy better know what he wants, huh? Again, thanks for stating the obvious to all the cyclingforums users out there.
     
  13. pudster

    pudster New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Messages:
    179
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am never quite sure why people that are spending this much money don't get a custom frame from some good builder. It has the advantage of being not only designed for you but also tubes can be used that match the type of riding you like and your weight. If a std. spec frame from one of them works they still change diameters and wall thickness of the tubing usually at no extra charge.
     
  14. msrw

    msrw New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2003
    Messages:
    84
    Likes Received:
    0
    Allow me to take the contrarian view. 20 years ago, frame geometry and build methodology were both much more art than science--now they are more science than art, and all of the more respected builders have access to the same technology and historically proven frame geometries. So while the first Colnago I purchased in the 70's was truly a quantum leap beyond the majority of high end racing bikes, now ALL high end bikes handle very well indeed.

    The differences in price are branding issues, and to some extent, material cost issues. If it were me, and I had your same criteria, I'd probably buy a Litespeed Tuscany in Ti. Either new or used. One advantage that you didn't mention, is Ti frames, especially 3/2.5 Ti frames, basically never wear out, never degrade in any way.
     
  15. dhk

    dhk New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2003
    Messages:
    2,259
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ti may be very corrosion resistant, but I believe it's subject to fatigue damage and failures just like anything else. Plus, high quality tubesets and manufacturing are also critical to strength and ultimate life of Ti frames, again just like steel and Al.

    Dan
     
  16. drewski

    drewski New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Messages:
    342
    Likes Received:
    0
    actually steel and titanium both have a point below which there is not fatigue degradation. regular pedaling forces, fall below this level. AL does not, so will naturally wear out over time with normal use. i'm not sure about Scandium.

    at home i've got a great link to a site with tons of info on the various frame materials. couldn't find it with a quick Google search.
     
  17. drewski

    drewski New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Messages:
    342
    Likes Received:
    0
    ok. i need to focus when googling:
    http://www2.sjsu.edu/orgs/asmtms/artcle/articl.htm

    "Ferrous alloys (a.k.a. steel) and titanium have a threshold below which a repeating load may be applied an infinite number of times without causing failure. This is called the fatigue limit, or endurance limit. Aluminum and magnesium don't exhibit an endurance limit, meaning that even with a miniscule load, they will eventually fail after enough load cycles."

    there are 7 long pages to this article. an good read for anyone interested.
     
  18. dhk

    dhk New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2003
    Messages:
    2,259
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's true about the fatigue threshold in theory, but I believe lightweight steel and Ti tubesets can easily get into the fatigue zone and fail, just like Al. After all, Foco, UltraFoco or Deda 16.5 steel tubesets aren't sold or warranted as lifetime frames. Don't racers break steel frames all the time in a season or two?

    Does Litespeed offer a full lifetime warranty against fatigue damage or "wear and tear"? All the major manufacturer warranties I've looked at exclude this, regardless of materials.

    Not saying a Ti frame couldn't last a recreational rider forever, but so could a steel or Al one if it's built from the right tubeset. If any of these are ridden 10-20K miles a year by a strong guy sprinting up hills, they are going to wear out, IMO.

    I've still got my old 531 steel Raleigh from 1975, for example, but that's the old school, heavy wall steel. Not many of us wants a 6 lb, lifetime steel frame that rides like a truck anymore....at least I know I don't.

    Dan
     
  19. drewski

    drewski New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Messages:
    342
    Likes Received:
    0
    dan, you bring up some good points with the lighter tubesets being used today. i think the article was writen in the mid-90's, but still it provides good insight into various material characteristics.

    the way i understand it, though, is that the fatigue/endurance limit is material dependant not impacted by the thickness of the tubing, but having said that, the thickness of the tubing will impact the overall strength and other characteristics of the tube.

    what this means is that the failures of light steel and Ti frames would most likely be not due to fatigue issues of the tubes, but more strength and rigidity issues due to the thinner walls and even the more delicate weld and joins between the tubes. of course, heavy sprinting (loads) might exceed the fatigue limit. i can't say for sure.

    any ME's want to comment?

    as you say, all of this is more of an issue with the racer/hard-core rider putting more stress on his/her frame, but the Al frame would not last forever (or as long as your 531 or my 753 frame), even recreationally. there is a limited lifespan inherent in the material vs Ti, which was what i wanted to point out.

    take a look at the article i linked. it does go into pros/cons of thinner walls, lighter tubes, etc. which, from a theoretical standpoint would not be changing over time, though what we're using in frames has because of advances in technology.

    regards.
    - andrew
     
  20. drewski

    drewski New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2003
    Messages:
    342
    Likes Received:
    0
    oh, and i recently picked up an Al frame w/ carbon fork/rear stays.

    got a great deal vs. Ti or other exotics (full carbon/scandium) and by the time it does get worn out, i'm thinking i'll be itching for a new bike anyways!
     
Loading...
Loading...