New Road bike $1400-$1500AUD



dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
Hello all,

Firstly a little bit about myself. I am 25, and my current cycling activities revolve around mountain biking. I have a nice little iron horse full suspension bike which I enjoy riding off road. I am now in the market for a road bike to start building up my fitness, and to just ride more in general. I don't always have time to get to the trails for a ride, and like the idea of getting out on the road.

I am just under 6 foot, 80kg and hopefully soon 75kg. I intend to do 2-3 rides on the road bike a week, probably 1 ride of about 40-80km and the others 20-30km. I also intend on doing rides like Loop-the-lake (80km) and the sydney to the gong ride.

So hopefully the above can give everyone an idea of my intentions for the bike.

My research so far has given me a few options in terms of the bikes to get, which I will go through. All are full alloy frames, with carbon forks.

Scott Speedster S40 - tiagra all through. weight 9.2kg

Avanti Veloce - 105 rear derailleur, tiagra other. 9.1kg

BH bikes R1 - mostly 105, although no name brakes. I was told this bike was about 7.5kg in total.

Trek 1200 - 105 rear derailleur, tiagra otherwise weight I think is around 10kg.

Argon 18 Plutonium - 105 all through including brakes and wheelset - this bike would be above the $1500 pricing above by $100-250. This bike is also about 7.5kg.

I have also considered the Giant OCR2, but aren't too keen on it.

So, any ideas on what would be good/better/no good for me? It is all a little confusing as to whether it is better to pay for more 105 gear. Does weight matter a lot, or not much?

I look forward to hearing people's opinions on this, and I thank you all in advance.
 

BryanM

New Member
Sep 30, 2006
12
0
0
FWIW I bought a Giant OCR2 2007 model & it hasnt skipped a beat for me. The tyres it came with were pretty **** but other than that I love it & it didnt cost an arm and a leg.
 

dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
Thanks. Will have a look at the OCR2 soon.

Have also received advice that one of the most important things is the wheelset, in particular the weight of the wheelset. Can anyone offer an opinion on this idea?
 

thomas_cho

New Member
Jan 4, 2005
508
0
0
Actually bike fit is probably most important.

Please indulge me as I share my experience when I first bought a bike.

As I had not ridden a road bike before, the riding position was quite different to what I had experience when riding a MTB years ago. The result, I bought a bike that was most "comfortable". However, as I rode it more, and got more flexible, and got more used to the riding position, I realised that I had got the wrong size.

A good bike shop will be able to advise you on the fit. Even pros change their position on the bike as the season wears on. Unfortunately my wife did not want to listen to me when she was getting a bike. Now I can see that she is not too comfortable with the "once comfortable" riding position.

FWIW I now ride a Giant OCR comp, but wished that I had instead gone with the TCR range. I really didnt need that longer headtube/higher riding position, once I had lost some weight, and gained more flexibility.

But your experience might be different from mine. At your weight you should be fine in regards to durability for most wheelsets. Get good tyres, the difference they make is most obvious.

In regards to bike weight, I recently built up a steel bike, and it came in at 1.5 kgs heavier than my Giant CF. But I hardly noticed the difference when riding. Perhaps thats cos 1.5kgs means nothing when I am 95kg.
 

sogood

New Member
Aug 24, 2006
2,148
0
36
thomas_cho said:
FWIW I now ride a Giant OCR comp, but wished that I had instead gone with the TCR range. I really didnt need that longer headtube/higher riding position, once I had lost some weight, and gained more flexibility.
I don't see how that so called "longer headtube/higher riding position" of compact frames has anything to do with your choice and comfort. If you are complaining that the bar is too high, then you've probably got yourself too big of a frame in the first place. At the end of the day, irrespective of the basic frame design, your riding position is determined by three points of contact (saddle, handlebar and pedals). By using different stems, seatpost and crank length, you can get to the same ride position unless your frame is too large or small. Compact or traditional has nothing to do with your problem.
 

thomas_cho

New Member
Jan 4, 2005
508
0
0
sogood said:
I don't see how that so called "longer headtube/higher riding position" of compact frames has anything to do with your choice and comfort. If you are complaining that the bar is too high, then you've probably got yourself too big of a frame in the first place. At the end of the day, irrespective of the basic frame design, your riding position is determined by three points of contact (saddle, handlebar and pedals). By using different stems, seatpost and crank length, you can get to the same ride position unless your frame is too large or small. Compact or traditional has nothing to do with your problem.
That was the hype which sold me the OCR comp (Now I know better). Not complaining about the fit, but if I had to do it again, I would have gone with the TCR with the confidence that head tube length had nothing to do with it.

Are you discounting the effect that wheelbase length has on the comfort of the ride?

Did I say that I had a problem with the fit of my current bikes? Whos talking about trad vs. compact sizing?

Are you implying that one can get a bike +/- 1 or 2 sizes and with the "right" combination of stems, seatpost, cranks still get the right fitting? So in assuming that, one can also say that there is no "correct" frame size for an individual, as the frame can be "customized" to fit by doing the above.

I merely stated that my mistake in getting first bike was because I had no prior experience in riding a road bike, and got a road bike which gave me a riding position similar to that on a MTB.

And also because I did not seek advice from regular columists like you :D
 

dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
I think that I have narrowed it down to the following three

Avanti Veloce - 105 rear derailleur, tiagra other. 9.1kg

BH bikes R1 - mostly 105, although no name brakes.

Argon 18 Plutonium - 105 all through including brakes and wheelset.

The narrowing down has been based on the 105 thing - ie I don't see the point in going for lower level gear for the same price, as well as who I am buying them from.

I had never heard of the BH or Argon brands before, so any opinions people have on these would be good.
 

sogood

New Member
Aug 24, 2006
2,148
0
36
thomas_cho said:
That was the hype which sold me the OCR comp (Now I know better). Not complaining about the fit, but if I had to do it again, I would have gone with the TCR with the confidence that head tube length had nothing to do with it.

Are you discounting the effect that wheelbase length has on the comfort of the ride?

Did I say that I had a problem with the fit of my current bikes? Whos talking about trad vs. compact sizing?

Are you implying that one can get a bike +/- 1 or 2 sizes and with the "right" combination of stems, seatpost, cranks still get the right fitting? So in assuming that, one can also say that there is no "correct" frame size for an individual, as the frame can be "customized" to fit by doing the above.

I merely stated that my mistake in getting first bike was because I had no prior experience in riding a road bike, and got a road bike which gave me a riding position similar to that on a MTB.
By complaining about the long headtube etc, you have directly implied it's a compact frame issue.

That's the selling pitch, but in practice, it has no bearing at all. Get the right frame size, longer stem, higher saddle post position, and you are no different to a traditional frame with horizontal top tube in terms of that three contact points. It's just simple geometry. As for getting a frame size up or down, well, obviously that has to be within reason. But for your complaint of the headtube being too long, well, one size down would suit you just fine with or without a longer stem. And how do you think those pro racers (T-Mobile comes to mind) on Giant frames fitted themselves? And not all of them have custom frames. And if you read more around the net, you'd be aware that running a smaller frame with exuberant lengths of seatpost showing is turning into a bit of an OCP statement.

As for the wheelbase difference. The difference is only around 1cm and a bit b/n each frame size increase or decrease. And in the scheme of things with CF, wheels, tyres, it makes hardly any difference, or how do you think those people who picked a smaller frame survived? And by bringing this wheelbase length out, you are starting to get into the nitty gritty of bike geometry that you never considered in your earlier post.

But I think you are absolutely right, some LBS salesmen don't take enough care in advising their customers. But at the same time, some customers don't have enough knowledge or think they have too much knowledge to work with sales. At the end of the day, there'll always be a percentage of their customer who'll come back and complain about their advice.
 

sogood

New Member
Aug 24, 2006
2,148
0
36
dain2772 said:
I think that I have narrowed it down to the following three
Not sure where you are, but there seemed to be a congregation of Argon owners in one of the major local racing club here. There's always a bunch of them riding Argon during Sat afternoon races. They looked fine.
 

sogood

New Member
Aug 24, 2006
2,148
0
36
dain2772 said:
I am in Sydney.
Talk to some of the riders in Randwick Botany CC. Quite a few of them ride Argon. And if you show up on Sat afternoon at Heffron Park starting around 4, you'll be able to see them in action.
 

dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
I am going to go back to the shop this afternoon to ask more questions about the Argon 18 and the BH, and hopefully get them weighed.

So does the general consensus say that the wheelset is the most important, or the drivetrain?
 

dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
Ok, well I think I have decided on a bike......

and the winner is.....

The BH R1!!! The decision was made based on good frame, 105 front & rear der. and shifters. The wheels are Rodi Stylus which aren't that common, but seem about the same as R500 wheels from shimano. They do look pretty schmick with blade spokes.. but I can always upgrade the wheels. The bike store does a full fit and will make sure all parts fit me right. And the fact that it is a bit of a boutique brand doesn't hurt, nor does the good deal.

So, if anyone has an opinion either way, feel free to contribute.
 

toocool

New Member
Jan 16, 2007
1
0
0
Its great you had a $1500 budget and stuck to it.

I too had the same idea to start with and ended with $2500 bike.:(

For every $200 extra you get that little bit more one different bikes, untill I was looking at 3k Colnago's and Argon kryptons.
 

Scotttri

Member
Oct 11, 2005
955
8
0
41
Did you look at the Felt range? The fet F80 retails for about $1400 and is 105 with FSA cranks and aqlex rims. Or the Felt F85 which is similar with slightly better components for $1800, you can usualy get about 10% off bikes if you bargain.
 

dain2772

New Member
Aug 13, 2006
20
0
0
Scotttri said:
Did you look at the Felt range? The fet F80 retails for about $1400 and is 105 with FSA cranks and aqlex rims. Or the Felt F85 which is similar with slightly better components for $1800, you can usualy get about 10% off bikes if you bargain.
I did have a look, but wanted to stay within the $1500 budget (also I figure I will spend another $200-250 getting pedals and shoes and new gloves). the F80 has slightly lower componentry than the B1, plus is slightly heavier. F85 looks like an awesome bike, but again, price.

and I did get a little $200 discount on the bike, so I am happy with that.
 

cyclespeugeot

New Member
Aug 29, 2007
6
0
0
dain2772 said:
I did have a look, but wanted to stay within the $1500 budget (also I figure I will spend another $200-250 getting pedals and shoes and new gloves). the F80 has slightly lower componentry than the B1, plus is slightly heavier. F85 looks like an awesome bike, but again, price.

and I did get a little $200 discount on the bike, so I am happy with that.
How's the BH R1 going, dain2772? I have been trying to find out as much as I can about this Spanish bike but there is not much out there. I'll add my 2 cents worth so anyone out there interested in this bike has a little more info than I did.

I have just bought the 105 L25 in red, pick it up today. I was choosing between the BH and a Avanti Giro. The Giro is a better bike for sure, but it was another $200. I was already spending way over my budget, so stuck with the BH, which felt more comfortable in reach (although ride comfort goes to the Avanti) and seems to have better paint quality with its Spanish frame (dust specks in the Giro's paint).

I do keep wondering if I should have bought the Avanti, as it seemed to spin up more quickly and felt much lighter (it is 1 kg between them - I weighed them at the shop - Avanti 9.0kg, BH 10.0kg.) and it has better componetry.

In the end I had to draw a line to the spending and stick to a budget, as I didn't have the money to get decent accessories if I went with the Avanti. In fact the Avanti was already $50 over my max, max limit. There will always be a better bike, and the next one I buy will no doubt be better but as a starter bike I think the BH was a good choice.

I found it hard as a novice to get clear info on bikes. This forum actually helped me the most. I'm 42 and just getting into bikes after spending most of my teenage years and early 20s on bikes.

I rode a lot on a series of Peugeot road bikes as a teenager, still have my steel frame PHE20 I bought new in 1990. It weighs 11.3kg as quoted by Peugeot (prob more like12.5kg with dynamo, lights and side stand) and I'll keep it forever but it is an old bike. It's amazing how much better the new bikes are - of course, not much in it for weight, in the case of my bikes, but finish and features is a lot like comparing a 1990 car with a 2007 model.

So the BH is a 'beginners' bike for me, a practical, all-round, reliable (hopefully!) road bike that could do social rides easily and serve as the basis for competiton, if I get that inspired.