Now, Time for the $5,000 bike -- which one?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Ashley3, Jan 14, 2005.

  1. Ashley3

    Ashley3 New Member

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    Okay, in the poll that said we ought not spend $5,000 on our first bike I registered a "no" because I spent far less than that. Now, however, I'm looking around in that general price range. So, what should I buy?
    I've got a Cannondale 700 right now, and like it a lot, but rather than upgrade components piece-meal (and if there's an argument that I SHOULD do that, please tell me), I'm thinking of making the leap into something already equiped with same.
    I'm looking for a road bike, obviously. I ride a great deal more than I race, but many of the folks I ride with are quite competitive and strong riders, so keeping up is a challenge. And I hope to race a bit more, although you won't see me in anything but the local races.
    Given my fondness for my Cannondale, I've eyed the Six13, but I'm eager to hear any and all opinions since many of you have experience with higher-end bikes and I've none.
    Thanks for any advice you can offer.
     
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  2. MaxPrime

    MaxPrime New Member

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    I have to say it, I'm a sucker for a Madone.
     
  3. graf zeppelin

    graf zeppelin New Member

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    Unless you can ride em and test out a few different higher end frames from a LBS, your having experience with a Cannondale and setting your sights on another might be best. At that price range, you can probably go pretty much across the board between frame manufacturers and choose at will, and it'd be hard to go wrong - its really just what is best for you.

    I can tell you I have a LOOK KG381i Team CSC carbon frame. Couple years old now. Its before LOOK's styling change. Not the lightest on the block anymore, but its still quite light. I dont choose for lightness and dont encourage anyone to, since a pound here or there on or off your bike isnt going to matter unless you got pretty much all of them off yourself and keep them off. Still, nothing wrong with it.

    I chose my frame based on the ride - its very smooth, sharp and precise and quite stiff despite what I had heard about some carbon frames back at that time. I also had a great deal on it, which was a factor, but I had already settled on LOOK. I love it enough to know I'll only get another LOOK when I get another carbon frame - 585 for me I bet.

    Dont read that as one frame being better than another - its fairly subjective here. Its my experience with LOOK that has me loyal to them. The bike works for me and meets everything I want. Trust is a factor too now. Its why I'd recommend either going with what you already know and are happy with (another Cannondale), or actually testing a bike from a different manufacturer, as they're all a little different.

    Try to check out a Colnago if you're in that range, the Madone perhaps. My LBS has a Six13 and it does look sweet. Enjoy whatever you decide to do.
     
  4. leslierc8853

    leslierc8853 New Member

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    My XMAS gift to me was a Specialized S-Works Tarmac. With Dura-Ace components I paid $4500 and I love it!
     
  5. PeterF

    PeterF New Member

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    I just purchased by first high end bike ($4,600 retail) and I notice quite a difference from my $1,800 bike. First of all I went with Campy Record 10 which is much lighter than the Ultegra 9 that I'm used to. The shifting is much quicker and the acceleration is outstanding. Plus I went with a very high end (Dedacciai 16.5 EOM) steel frame which might be a bit heavier than aluminum, but the ride quality is vastly improved. A high end frame also deserves the best bar/stem/post/saddle and wheels. I went with Ritchey WCS OS bar and Stem (I've tried others but I like the Ritchey the best) and a carbon seatpost and Selle San Marco aspide saddle. I am running Campy Proton Wheels for now, but will most likely get some Ksyrium SL's this year and use the Protons as my back-up set.
    :cool:
     
  6. DiabloScott

    DiabloScott New Member

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    When you spend that much, you have to be concerned about your image. You will be presenting yourself as someone who could have any bike he chooses and lesser riders will look to you for their future selections as well. The roads are full of Trek posers on Madones and 5900's - fine bikes but those guys get laughed at. Don't go for anything that has some quirky feature like wavy fork blades or no seat tube - you'll come off as a geek. You want to show the world you're a real rider - someone who values form over substance but has the kind of style that never becomes obselete. You want the kind of bike that turns the heads of REAL riders, not wannabees.

    If you're a traditionalist - Bianchi, Pinarello, Merckx (avoid garish paint jobs)
    If you're a climber - Scott CR-1, Klein Q-pro XX
    If you're an artist - Merlin Cielo
    If you're a Ti fan - DEAN, Moots

    Please don't make this decision lightly. I am available for future consultation.
     
  7. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Agree with graf zep above. Spending this kind of money, look at and test ride as many bikes as you can, and try to filter out all the hype.

    If I was spending that kind of money for a bike, believe I'd go with a custom frame from any number of US or euro makers (Kestrel, Look, Merckx, Pinarello, Pegoretti, etc) rather than just an off-the-shelf bike from my LBS. The italian brands have that high style and name recognition. Starting with a frame, you can have any mix of components you want. I tend to favor US-made components and wheels like Ritchey, Thomson, FSA, and these are readily available at OEM prices if you find the right LBS to do the build up.

    Or you can order a frame from a US custom builder. You can have it fitted to your dimensions, weight and riding style/preferences. Plus, you can have the custom paint job of your choice.

    Note, I'm not putting down any of the big brand names sold at your LBS, but just stating my preference for something more exclusive at this price point. If you fall in love with something off-the-rack, buy it by all means.
     
  8. Rompinrhino

    Rompinrhino New Member

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    I agree with DiabloScott up there. Go with something classy. I really like the Klein Q-Pro's. They have really cool paint schemes as well. Its good when you have that kind of money to spend on a bike. If you can, you can get a better deal sometimes by buying the frame and components yourself and then building it up, sometimes. That way you can put really cool stuff on it, like Record Carbon cranks or something really fancy.
     
  9. Shredpirate

    Shredpirate New Member

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    I suggest going to http://www.competitivecyclist.com/

    You might want to the check out the closeout sections for each brand. If I were in your situation I'd consider purchasing a Colnago or LOOK w/ high end campy :D
     
  10. little_chicken

    little_chicken New Member

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    I agree, when you get in that price range, you need to spend the time researching, its half the fun. I typpically get one of those built every 8 yrs. I read everything I can on all the parts available and specify EVERYTHING on my bike (stem, seatspost , fork, HS, BB, Crank, Brakes, wheels, pedals, casset ratios, etc.....)

    Which bike, that's entirely up to you ? you can get pre-fab, custom, half-half, CF, Al, Steel, or somekind of exotic blend... whatever ... (Trek, Can, Colnago, Pinarello, .. : not that they are not good but for 5k youd like something special and exotic but not over the edge, well that's my opinion, and since they are so many out there) ..

    I went Ti, bcs , its classy and since I built my frames to last they always look nice and not the flavor of the month kind of thing.

    5K : you know you will either chose DA or Rec
    Wheels : go tubs & CF .. if you don't like the glue use Tufo tape


    Have fun and give us some feedback..

    Cheers
     
  11. cdaleguy

    cdaleguy New Member

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    Orbea sure are pretty. But, as said above, test-ride, test-ride, test-ride. Then train extra hard because (on that nice of a bike) you have to be able to back it up.
     
  12. NRW77

    NRW77 New Member

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    Go custom! Whether Independent Fabrication, Seven, Serotta, Moots or whomever, you can't go wrong. I have about month left to wait for my custom IF and I am psyched. I presently have my Specialized set up at almost exactly the same fit as the Crown Jewel will be and that alone is a significant improvement over the way I had ben riding. Once I adapt my new-found riding posture to Reynolds 853, Ouzo Pro fork, Chorus, Ksyrium SL's etc, I think I will definately have arrived at my own little corner of cycling nirvana. Besides, I won't be bumping into anyone riding around on my bike and that does have its own appeal.

    YMMV of course but it seems to me like once you get into the >$4000 price range, you might as well make it personal.

    Happy hunting at any rate.

    NW
     
  13. leslierc8853

    leslierc8853 New Member

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    By analogy, based on the standard you're proposing, only Michael Schumacher could buy a Ferrari. I'm in favor of anyone pursuing their dream - house, automobile, bike, etc. - as long as they can afford it.
     
  14. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    There are lots of smaller custom builders in the US as well. My local builder, SANO, was written up in Bicycling Mag recently. He builds frames all the way from standard geometry AL/CF with an Ouzo Pro fork up to custom-measure XLR8R carbon. Does lots of great looking Foco, Ultrafoco and S3 in steel, as well as Sc7000 and all the Columbus and Deda AL tubesets.

    I have one of his "Pro-stock" AL/CF frames, with DA/FSA components, Velomax wheels and a standard paint job (one color of my choice, no decals). He does great fancy custom paint jobs if that's what you're into. Info at www.sanobike.com.

    I'm sure there are other small builders that are also worthy of a close look. Waving a $5000 check around, you should be able to get just about any bike you want.
     
  15. systecsol

    systecsol New Member

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    rhetorical question...it is the bike you are currently riding. It is in the cycling the wows me.
     
  16. Jaguar27

    Jaguar27 New Member

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    Hi Ashley3...If you wait untill wednesday evening I'll let you know what a Six13 Rides like...it will be delivered on Tuesday...

    I bought the Team Replica version.


     
  17. OleumCitri

    OleumCitri New Member

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    you should go custom..i personally think that above 3000$ youre just paying for the name(except maybe for carbon wheelsets). i'm gonna ride a FOCUS this year..dont think anyone of you gyus know them...gonna see how that rides..but hey i would ride almost anything for free..who wouldn't ;)
     
  18. Ashley3

    Ashley3 New Member

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    It's a safe bet I won't have bought anything by Wednesday! And with all the terrific feedback -- thanks to all of you who have responded -- I've got a lot more homework ahead of me. I have read a good bit on the Six13 (and fondled one repeatedly) but I have yet to get into the saddle, and it's obvious from what everyone has said that I need to ride as many bikes as I can before I make a decision.

    Please let me know how you like the Six13, and I'd love to hear thoughts from anyone who hasn't responded or additional thoughts from those who have.
    Thanks again to all.
     
  19. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Would say it's hard to go wrong with C'dale quality, but you might find something out there that you like better...just because you like the looks, the ride, or the way it fits you. Suggest you check out the Kestrel Evoke, and as many other bikes as possible. Within about a 50 mile radius from you, there should be many high-end bike shops with great stuff to test ride.
     
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