Recommendations for road bike - approx. $2,200 price range.



witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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New to the forum, so hello all.. I'm shopping for a road bike for training, club rides, and possibly recreational racing.. I've been on a mountain bike for years on the trails but need to have a cardio activity that I can just walk out the garage and go instead of driving to trails.

My LBS that I was hoping to give the business carries trek mainly and I was looking at the madone line, but I don't know that one can be had at my price point. I was hoping some of you with experience could give me some recommendations on specific bikes to look at. I'd like to get a carbon fiber framed bike, and would prefer to get the Ultegra group though it sounds like the 105 would be fine too?

Any specific recommendations are appreciated and if you have any tips on where to get the best deals, it's much appreciated. Another quick question, I am going to the local shop to work with their fit guy.. with that "fit" translate over to other bikes if I end up buying online? I will certainly be supporting the local shop with accessories, etc., and have a good relationship with them as we've purchased a number of bikes from the for the kids as well as all gear we have needed. I just don't want to be tied to the bike makes that they carry.

So if you were spending up to $2,200, what would you buy and where.. any recommendations on pedals and other useful accessories for a road bike are appreciated to.. thanks a lot for any thoughts! Ben
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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Scotty_Dog said:
Unless you need to spend $2200 on a new carbon 105/Ultegra equipped bike, I would shop here: bikesdirect.com


I actually ran across that website before.. it just confused me more with all the different names I've never heard of, and apparent options.
 

Scotty_Dog

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Jul 30, 2004
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witsbusa said:
I actually ran across that website before.. it just confused me more with all the different names I've never heard of, and apparent options.

They do not sell the usual name brand bikes or have the kind of customer service that a local bike shop can offer. But if you're the type of buyer that's not concerned about the bragging rights of a company's logo and know a little bit of bicycle assembly/maintenance procedures, they offer unbeatable prices on comparably equipped bikes.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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thanks for the input.. I'm definitely not concerned about "bragging rights", but I do think I want to stay with a well known company for warranty issues and company backing if I do have a problem..


Scotty_Dog said:
They do not sell the usual name brand bikes or have the kind of customer service that a local bike shop can offer. But if you're the type of buyer that's not concerned about the bragging rights of a company's logo and know a little bit of bicycle assembly/maintenance procedures, they offer unbeatable prices on comparably equipped bikes.
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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Try some other LBS. At the LBS that has Trek, ask if there's a Madone or other model that fits your price range. Also, test ride a bike/bikes before buying. Being in the right price range doesn't help you if the bike doesn't fit and feel right on the road.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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alienator said:
Try some other LBS. At the LBS that has Trek, ask if there's a Madone or other model that fits your price range. Also, test ride a bike/bikes before buying. Being in the right price range doesn't help you if the bike doesn't fit and feel right on the road.

I actually looked up a couple other local shops who carry specialized and felt.. I'll probably narrow my search for a madone, specialized tarmac or felt.

The trek dealer is about 5 minutes from my house, and they have been very good to deal with in the past.. then again, the other dealers are only 15 minutes or so, and how often am I going to need to pay them a visit.

Is the frame on the bikes in my price range going to serve me well in the long run? ie, if I for one reason or another want to upgrade other components. Thanks for the advice.
 

alienator

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witsbusa said:
Is the frame on the bikes in my price range going to serve me well in the long run? ie, if I for one reason or another want to upgrade other components. Thanks for the advice.

Any bikes in that price range are going to have high quality frames that will serve you well in the long run, so long as the bike fits you. The difference between bikes in your price range and higher price ranges are primarily weight (not a great difference), higher spec components (wheels, in particular), exclusivity, and that's about it.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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alienator said:
Any bikes in that price range are going to have high quality frames that will serve you well in the long run, so long as the bike fits you. The difference between bikes in your price range and higher price ranges are primarily weight (not a great difference), higher spec components (wheels, in particular), exclusivity, and that's about it.


so with money being an object, is the better approach to get something like the bikes I mentioned, and it will serve me well until I find a deal on a lighter / nicer wheel set, components, etc. It appears there is a pretty strong market for used upgrades - is that a common approach?
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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witsbusa said:
so with money being an object, is the better approach to get something like the bikes I mentioned, and it will serve me well until I find a deal on a lighter / nicer wheel set, components, etc. It appears there is a pretty strong market for used upgrades - is that a common approach?

What you may want to upgrade will depend on the bike you choose and its spec. Depending on how you get on with the new bike's saddle, you may want to change that. That's the case, though, with any new bike. As for wheels, you should wait to see what wheels come with the bike. That said, I that in the majority of cases, a custom wheelset is the best way to go. A custom wheelset can be built to fit your needs and desires--low weight, strong, your choice of hubs, spokes, and rims--at an exceedingly reasonable cost. The wheels that come on the bike can easily be sold on eBay, defraying or completely covering the cost of custom wheels. Again, I'd wait, though, to see what wheels come with the bike. Who knows, you may love the wheels that come with the bike you choose.

Is witsbusa about a Hayabusa?
 

blankcarbon_ian

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Jul 22, 2010
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witsbusa,

If you were looking to get into something carbon fiber please check out our road frames a http://www.blankcarbon.com

You can even shoot me an email at [email protected]

Our frames are made in the same factory as some of the more high end frames you would find in your LBS, but you pay for the carbon not the name brand stamped on the side!

We are a small company out of Las Vegas NV. You would be guaranteed GOOD customer service and we are definitely in your price range.

Thanks, Ian.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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alienator said:
What you may want to upgrade will depend on the bike you choose and its spec. Depending on how you get on with the new bike's saddle, you may want to change that. That's the case, though, with any new bike. As for wheels, you should wait to see what wheels come with the bike. That said, I that in the majority of cases, a custom wheelset is the best way to go. A custom wheelset can be built to fit your needs and desires--low weight, strong, your choice of hubs, spokes, and rims--at an exceedingly reasonable cost. The wheels that come on the bike can easily be sold on eBay, defraying or completely covering the cost of custom wheels. Again, I'd wait, though, to see what wheels come with the bike. Who knows, you may love the wheels that come with the bike you choose.

Is witsbusa about a Hayabusa?

thanks a lot for the information, and it makes a lot of sense.. my screen name is based on the fact that I have a hayabusa.. The first internet forums I was on were motorcycle sites, and that's what I picked.. figured I'd just stay with it so I wouldn't forget who I was on different forums.. :)

Let me throw another bike out there that someone mentioned -- a Cervelo S1.. from my reading, even though it's aluminum, it is very light and from other riders, a real pleasure to ride. Comes in my price range with ultegra components, and sure is snazzy looking.. :D

I have to do some more research on the aluminum v. carbon fiber, but in summary is it about comfort and carbon fiber being more forgiving and not as harshly firm??

Thanks a lot guys.
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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blankcarbon_ian said:
witsbusa,

If you were looking to get into something carbon fiber please check out our road frames a http://www.blankcarbon.com

You can even shoot me an email at [email protected]

Our frames are made in the same factory as some of the more high end frames you would find in your LBS, but you pay for the carbon not the name brand stamped on the side!

We are a small company out of Las Vegas NV. You would be guaranteed GOOD customer service and we are definitely in your price range.

Thanks, Ian.

So, are you here solely for the free advertising....er, spam....or do actually plan to contribute something other than adverts for your product?
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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witsbusa said:
Let me throw another bike out there that someone mentioned -- a Cervelo S1.. from my reading, even though it's aluminum, it is very light and from other riders, a real pleasure to ride. Comes in my price range with ultegra components, and sure is snazzy looking.. :D

I have to do some more research on the aluminum v. carbon fiber, but in summary is it about comfort and carbon fiber being more forgiving and not as harshly firm??

The S1 is a great bike by all accounts. Ultegra components are damned nice.

Blanket statements about how a certain material "rides" can't be made. Material is only one aspect of how a frame performs. More important aspects are fit, frame geometry (wheelbase, in particular, and chain stay length have a bigger influence on ride quality), construction methods, and QC. Honestly, tire pressure is a much bigger factor in a bike's "ride" than material. Carbon fiber can deliver a harsh ride or a comfy ride. Which ever, it's all in the details. Internet myth says that aluminum rides harsh, but that's not the case at all.

I would focus on finding a bike that appeals to you, fits you, and rides the way you like.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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thanks a LOT for taking the time to fill me in.. the local Cervelo dealer I found also carries Specialized, Cannondale, Serotta and Kuota so at least I should have a number of comparisons to make.

Only downside is they are a little bit of a hike to get to..
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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A hike is worth it to find the right bike. It's not as if you'd have to go to that LBS a lot, although you'd probably want to take advantage of any free service (tune up, etc) that they offer with the purchase. Also, where ever you buy the bike, ask if a bike fit is included in the cost of the bike. If it's not, try bargaining on that point.
 

witsbusa

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Jul 23, 2010
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good advice.. thanks.

I actually just set up an appointment tomorrow fitting and test rides on a Cervelo S1, Specialized Tarmac Elite and Tarmac Comp..

15% off all carbon bikes, so the Tarmac comp will be about the same price as the S1 and tarmac elite about $330 cheaper..

can't wait.

Any experience or opinions with the tarmac bikes or opinion on the Specialized products?

alienator said:
A hike is worth it to find the right bike. It's not as if you'd have to go to that LBS a lot, although you'd probably want to take advantage of any free service (tune up, etc) that they offer with the purchase. Also, where ever you buy the bike, ask if a bike fit is included in the cost of the bike. If it's not, try bargaining on that point.
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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witsbusa said:
Any experience or opinions with the tarmac bikes or opinion on the Specialized products?

Tarmacs, and Specialized bikes in general, are excellent bikes.
 

witsbusa

New Member
Jul 23, 2010
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would the 105 components on the specialized bikes versus the ultegra on the S1 sway you?
 

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