Upgrade current bike or purchase new?


New Member
Jan 17, 2011
I am currently riding a 2010 Trek madden 6.5, with a combination of components, ultra/105. This bike has treated me very well, not a complaint about it. I recently rode my friends cannonade synapse (2016) and really enjoyed the feel of this bike. It was less of an aggressive position, shifting was smoother, seemed "quicker" for lack of a better term.

So now I have the new bike "itch" and wanted to get some thoughts on upgrading. Have about $3000 to spend. is it worth exploring electronic shifting? It seems like most 2016's are running disc breaks? good bad?

or...the 2010 trek frame is really amazing, I could upgrade components, wheels, tires move to an 11 speed setup as well....
I would go for a new bike. Frames have been improved, you'll get 11-speeds and no need to wrench on anything for a couple of years. Tapered steerers are a big improvement in both safety and handling. Head tube area of most frames are much stiffer than earlier generations. This is a pretty much across the board improvement on all frames. BB's 'may' be stiffer...this pretty much depends on the frame in question, but is worth looking into.

And yes, Ultegra Di2 electronic gear is worth the extra money IMO. I've got 5800 / 105 and 6800 / Ultegra and shifting is accurate, light and pretty smooth. shimaNO is a bit slower shifting than my Campagnolo (noticably slower on front shifts onto the little ring and rear upshifts onto smaller cogs). Cable life is only so-so...the price paid for weight savings and small cable winding drums in the shifters. Electronic adds complexity, but every user I've talked to is in love with their Ultegra Di2 rig.

From the sound of what you want to upgrade your old Madone, the only thing you would keep is the frame and cockpit.

Disc brakes? Discs are probably a better choice for all-weather commuters and guys that train in wet weather a lot. They make perfect sense for those in high mountains with long, twisting descents and repeated hard braking. If you're running carbon wheels and not a skilled user of rim brakes, discs are safer and offer hard slowing after hard slowing after hard slowing.

I'm still not convinced of the modulation improvements and the ultimate limitation of slew rates is the tire / road interface, but if you're interested at all in discs...give them a fair test ride and judge for yourself. They will add some weight as the components are heavier, the frame and fork are built stronger and heavier and the wheels add a little more weight. Nothing that can't be overcome with higher end components, but a valid consideration if you are also going to be doing the climbing that gets you those speed demon descents.
Thanks for the reply. I was thinking the same about a new bike - looked at an Emonda, Synapse, and Domaine. If I keep the madone, the only thing i would keep is the frame and upgrade wheels, and electronic shifting - to an 11 speed.
Get a new bike. If you simply upgrade, the itch will not go away,lol...Also, its always good to have a spare in case something happens ti your main ride. Having 1 means you'll be off the bike once in a while do to necessary repairs.
I just purchased my second bike a little over a month ago. I have a 2013 synapse that I've tried to adjust to be as aggressive as possible and decided to get a real aggressively oriented bike. I purchased a BMC TimeMachine and so far, so good. The synapse is a great bike and I still use it about half the time. I think the 2017 model has come a long way from my 2013 one.

Electronic shifting does sound cool though. I think I may upgrade to that in the next few years.
I'm a tightwad so bear with me.

I see it as a bike that is only 7 years old, unless it has more than 30,000 miles, although that's low considering i have a bike with over 150,000 miles but I digest...(yes, I know)...anywho, the bike you have is relatively young is what I'm saying. The components you have sound like they're still working fine. OK so you're claiming after 7 year the bike doesn't fit you quite right, why not take it into a shop and have a professional fit done since you haven't been able to dial it in after 7 years? The cost for that is about $175 plus parts, during the fitting process discuss with the fitter why it doesn't feel comfortable, once he has your information along with your physical proportions and bike geometry, then he can make suggestions on what is needed to improve the ride.

The other thing you can do if money is burning a hole in your pocket is to buy a wireless electronic component system, personally I think electronic systems of any kind is a waste of money, but that's just me. SRAM makes a very nice wireless system in their Red series that will cost about $1600 plus install. Wireless would be the only way to go on a bike that doesn't have the frame drilled out to accept running the wire through.

Or better yet, since you have $3,000 to spend, don't do anything on your bike other than the fitting and getting it overhauled, and instead pay off a credit card balance, or if you don't have a credit card balance, pay the money towards paying off a car sooner, of if you don't have a car loan, then put it towards your mortgage. Gee paying off bills ahead of time, what a strange and odd thought, you must think I'm really weird, but that's how I roll, I don't have credit card, I never get car loans, I don't even have a personal mortgage, the only loan I have is on one of my commercial buildings, and that loan is being paid for by the rents, even my other commercial properties are all paid for. I pay cash for everything, and credit cards are joke because the vast majority of people buy **** they don't need but can't afford so they put it on the card, eliminate the cards and that frees up not only money to put in savings but if you want to buy a house the amount of credit available (not the amount of any borrowed money, the total amount of credit available for your use on any particular card) goes against you and limits you by those amounts of how much you can borrow on a house loan, or in my case a commercial loan, thus reduces your buying power. And of course the same is true with a car loan.

Sure i don't drive around in brand new cars, but in my opinion that's a bad idea anyway since inflation hits new cars hard in the first 5 years, it's the worst "investment" a person can make. With today's internet capability it's easy to find 6 year old plus cars with low miles. I found a car for my daughter that was 15 years old, yikes you say, but it only had 32,000 miles on it and no rust (which is difficult to find here in NE Indiana), she paid $2,500 for it (used her tax refund), and it now has about 80,000 on it and it's never given her any problems. I bought a 94 Ford F150 supercab to use for hauling my trailer and supplies for my business in 2014 with only 64,000 miles and no rust, it now has 102,00 miles and still going strong with minor rust now just starting to happen, I paid $5,800 for it, but I'll drive it into the ground before I buy another. So low mileage low costing dependable vehicles that are older and don't cost much to buy are out there and relatively easy to find, and can be bought without going into major debt, or no debt which is the only way i fly when it comes to cars.

sorry, I jump off my soap box, i know it was a far fetched idea, back to what people consider to be reality now.
You had me at "tightwad".
LOL! Well it is who I am, I don't see spending money on something else when it isn't broke or not too old. Biserker1's bike is just fine if he wants to save money and perhaps do something else more constructive with the money. Besides there always has to be another option to consider on these forums or it gets to boring around here.
LOL! Well it is who I am, I don't see spending money on something else when it isn't broke or not too old. Biserker1's bike is just fine if he wants to save money and perhaps do something else more constructive with the money. Besides there always has to be another option to consider on these forums or it gets to boring around here.

Ha - thanks for the opinion. That's why I asked the question! Diverse opinions are what we need here. If i move to a new Bike, I would most likely trade the madone in, the LBS will give me approx. $2000 in store credit (I can negotiate higher - long standing relationship, they are good people).

Also could classify myself as a "tightwad" buutttt...I work hard so I can play hard, no outstanding bills, loans, credit - I have been very fortunate in my career. Upgrading components, bikes every so often keeps me interested, I enjoy the new tech...which is a blessing and a curse. Rode my friends, got the itch...we know how this goes...
I rarely upgrade a bike, I ride them forever just as they came from the factory. The only things that ever get upgraded is if something breaks and there's a better option available for replacement.

I did upgrade an 87 Giant MTB about 8 years ago because of the crappy since new Shimano XT stuff finally just ****** me off so I went ballistics on the bike and replace the trigger shifter to an actually cheaper twist shifter, and the rear to a newer Shimano Deore XT but left the front derailleur original since it seemed to work good. The original components only had about 1,200 miles on it and the shifters and rear derailleur never did work right, the newer stuff seems to work a lot better. The I think I bent the rear stay a bit last year when I took a pretty good size jump, which I probably shouldn't be doing at my age and with fusion in my back. I haven't gotten around to fixing it yet, it is steel so it should bend back, it's only off by about 3/16ths of an inch preventing me from lining up the rear wheel good enough.

It's just the way I roll, I don't spend money to upgrade if it's not broken, and I don't buy new bikes if the old one still rides good.
I could go either way with this. There is a great satisfaction in turning a somewhat worn steed into a thriving, well-oiled machine. But Bob is right. If you buy new you can focus on riding and simple maintenance.
I have a bike with over 150,000 miles on it and all I've ever done to it in all those miles and years is simple maintenance. Granted the components (Suntour Superbe) were made back in the day when components were built with quality, but I don't see any reason why modern components, especially mid level stuff that's usually built a bit more robust, can't last at least 75,000 miles as long as you keep it maintained and keep it clean. I currently have only about 7,000 miles on my 3 years of use 105 stuff and so far no issues but the components are young yet so time will tell how long they'll last. But my point is that if you take care of your components then all that should be required is simple maintenance to keep them going. I don't think modern briftors with all their moving parts will last as long as a simple down tube shifter, so that is probably the weakest link in modern components.

Besides, if for example, a briftor fails and the only option is to replace it, it's still cheaper to replace the briftor then getting a new bike! A set of briftors (which you could buy just one if that new one matches the other) will cost about $163 and would be good for a long time.

On occasion I still ride the bike with the 150,000 miles on it, and it still rides just fine. But obviously with that many miles on components is one of the reasons I bought a new bike, but not to many people will ride a bike that many miles, they usually a buy a bike every 5 years and think getting 10,000 to 15,000 on a bike is a lot...I just have to laugh! In all honesty, if I took the bike with the 150,000 miles on it to a bike shop and had them do a complete overhaul, I would not be scared to take it for a credit card trip across the USA, that's how much confidence I would have in the components. Is that a guarantee that nothing will go wrong on a trip like that? of course not, but the same can be said for even brand new stuff!
Glad to see this thread! I'm in the process of buying my first road bike and have settled on the Schwinn Phocus 1400; but, the bike's standard Shimano A050 shifters aren't integrated.

While I'm not necessarily convinced that as a first-time cyclist I need to upgrade to fully integrated shifters out of the box, I am curious to know if it makes sense to add integrated shifters to my bike at some point? Not sure whether I might get more bang for my buck just upgrading the bike when ready.

If you spend money on the Schwinn you will have difficulty getting it fixed at a bike shop when things break due to the non standard parts they use. Personally, just opinion of course, but if it were me I would find a used bike for that $300, sure it may be older but if you live in or near a large city you can find them in excellent condition; yes the parts will be old and no longer made but they are plentiful on EBay, but all wear parts are still being made including brake pads, bearings, tires, any just about any pedal will work, any seat will work, headsets and hubs are still made, and cables, all of which your LBS will have or can get. The only real parts you may have to find on Ebay would be derailleurs, brake calipers, and levers, fortunately those last forever.

I've have bought several vintage bikes used and never had any issues with them, in fact I have a 85 Schwinn Le Tour Luxe that I take touring with all of it's factory original components and I have no thoughts of something breaking.