Will "comfort" geometry make me slower?



Cycle2100

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Aug 27, 2005
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I currently have a Trek 2100 -- traditional geometry bike. I'm considering getting a Trek Pilot 5.0 -- "comfort" geometry bike. Technically, I assume it will make me slower, since the position is more upright. But can anyone comment who has ridden both types extensively, if their average speed was significantly impacted? I don't race, but do like riding fast (for me). I often average 19 MPH. Can I still expect to average that? Any comments or insights would be appreciated.
 

Walrus

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Apr 4, 2004
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Cycle2100 said:
I currently have a Trek 2100 -- traditional geometry bike. I'm considering getting a Trek Pilot 5.0 -- "comfort" geometry bike. Technically, I assume it will make me slower, since the position is more upright. But can anyone comment who has ridden both types extensively, if their average speed was significantly impacted? I don't race, but do like riding fast (for me). I often average 19 MPH. Can I still expect to average that? Any comments or insights would be appreciated.
I've test ridden more upright geometry bikes, and although I noticed a difference in the feel/ride...I didn't feel like I was going that much slower. There may be a small difference, but if you're not racing...1mph diff shouldn't really bother you. Your speed is also dependant on the quality of your wheels/hubs (so you could always upgrade those). Best thing to do would be to test ride the Pilot and get a feel for yourself.
 

Cycle2100

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Aug 27, 2005
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Walrus said:
I've test ridden more upright geometry bikes, and although I noticed a difference in the feel/ride...I didn't feel like I was going that much slower. There may be a small difference, but if you're not racing...1mph diff shouldn't really bother you. Your speed is also dependant on the quality of your wheels/hubs (so you could always upgrade those). Best thing to do would be to test ride the Pilot and get a feel for yourself.

Yes, I'll be test riding the Pilot for three days beginning tomorrow, so I should really get a good feel. But I want to make as informed decision as possible, so I'm looking for other's experiences. The wheels/hubs on the Pilot are identical to what I've got now, so the main difference will be the geometry.
 

John M

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Jun 21, 2005
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Cycle2100 said:
Yes, I'll be test riding the Pilot for three days beginning tomorrow, so I should really get a good feel. But I want to make as informed decision as possible, so I'm looking for other's experiences. The wheels/hubs on the Pilot are identical to what I've got now, so the main difference will be the geometry.

If you really are more comfortable, you may actually be faster. Lower and more aero is only faster if you can maintain that position and can comfortably generate power. If you are straining and uncomfortable, you will generate less power and be slower. Proper fit should be major determinant in selecting the appropriate bike.

Keep in mind that you can probably get the same position on the 2100 by changing the stem, bars, and/or seat position, so you may not need a new bike, but rather a re-fitting of the old one if you like the more upright position better.
 

Cycle2100

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Aug 27, 2005
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John M said:
If you really are more comfortable, you may actually be faster. Lower and more aero is only faster if you can maintain that position and can comfortably generate power. If you are straining and uncomfortable, you will generate less power and be slower. Proper fit should be major determinant in selecting the appropriate bike.

Excellent point. Now for the demo ride to see how this plays out.
 

vchu7105

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May 31, 2005
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I agree, I now have a tarmac comp and the lower riding position is uncomfortable...I think its slowing me down.



John M said:
If you really are more comfortable, you may actually be faster. Lower and more aero is only faster if you can maintain that position and can comfortably generate power. If you are straining and uncomfortable, you will generate less power and be slower. Proper fit should be major determinant in selecting the appropriate bike.

Keep in mind that you can probably get the same position on the 2100 by changing the stem, bars, and/or seat position, so you may not need a new bike, but rather a re-fitting of the old one if you like the more upright position better.
 

Retro Grouch

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Dec 29, 2005
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It might make you faster.

What part of the handlebar do you typically use now? If you do most of your riding with your hands on the hoods or on the tops, the slightly higher handlebar position may be just enough to allow you to use the drops more extensively.