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New bike


By daveh - Posted on 28 June 2010

I posted a while back about buying a road bike but never got around to doing anything about it. This rain and the lack of dry tracks to ride on have spurred me into action. Any advice about the carbon/alloy option? If I get a carbon bike that's only a little but more expensive than an alloy is it a cheap carbon and I could have issues or should carbon always be decent on a decent brand?

I have seen the following 4 bikes, my preference is to stay under $2,500 but the F5 is in there just in case it is that good that I should blow my budget. I haven't looked at any LBSs that sell Specialised, Cannondale and a bunch of others. Should I be doing that and does anyone have a recommendation of brands/bikes/LBSs?

Felt Z75 - $2,100
Trek 4.5 - $2,500
Giant TCR Advanced 2 - $2,500
Felt F5 - $2,800

Hopefully from the bikes mentioned above you can gather what sort of bike I am after! Please PM me if you would rather not mention LBS names in the public forum. Thanks in advance for your help.

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Giant Defy Advanced 2. From talking to a few people the more relaxed geometry over the TCR was more suitable for the training / social riding I do, but the TCR is a better race bike. I also looked at the Felt f5, the Specialized Roubaix Elite and the Fisher Cronus. Ruled the Fisher out because it a brand new bike and there are reports of issues with the fork / front wheel. Didn't look at the Trek, they're nice bikes but tend to be overpriced. That price is surprisingly good. The Felt was good but I didn't feel it was in the same class as the Specialized and the Defy. The Specialized is awesome but so is the Defy and a mate in a LBS was able to source one for me, I pick it up on Saturday.

Depending on your size it can be a bit of a challenge getting bikes at this time of year but there are some good specials to be had.

Thanks Adam. The Specialized are nice bikes but appear a little out of my price range. My uneducated understanding was that Felt were getting up there so it is interesting to hear your thoughts on the Defy being perhaps a better class of bike (I know that this is horses for courses). The Trek 4.5 looked good, not sure if it is still there, it was a week or so ago and I wasn't quite ready to put my money down at that stage. Not sure if my LBS had a Defy Advanced in my size, perhaps why they were pushing the TCR! Eye-wink

Any thoughts on carbon vs alloy, is that much better that really is preferable given the other kit being the same specs?

I have the 2009 Avanti Cadent 1.0 and its great. It's more comfortable with a more upright position and flexible chain stays. Not sure what they retail for now but was around $2500 from memory. I should add its no light weight (in the 9kg range) but seems fine and I imagine the others are around the same weight for the same sort of money.

Get an Avanti Cadent or Quantum 1 during the TDF promo for $2100.
These prices don't mean cheap carbon. It's a promo to to advertise the brand and get people fired up.
The cost of carbon is gradually reducing because in road bike world the manufacturers prefer it and if done properly is a better bike. Mass production means low prices. In years to come an aluminium bike with a high spec level just won't exist.

Dave, I have no doubt carbon is better than alloy or carbon/alloy. I also have no doubt I am not up to the standard of the bike but I've been on my aluminum roadie for 17 years and it's time for an upgrade.

The Felt is a very good bike, I think the other two won because of the compact frame vs a normal frame, I really liked the feel of the compacts. The funny thing is I was originally attracted to the Felt because it wasn't a compact.

Dave,

I have had Al and carbon ( Specialized Roubaix S works) , now riding a Everti falcon titanium from Cranks.

Carbon is great, but fragile , I killed mine in a big crash at Akuna Bay , snapped the chain stays , cracks in the down tubes etc etc ..... even if you can't see any damage with carbon you need to write it off after a crash !

Titanium frames are back , great comfort to ride ,only marginally heavier than carbon , and best off all last a lifetime !

Have a look , you can get the frame , build it up with 105 components and upgrade over time if needed

John

... so much, I have some in my hand.

It's offical - I'm a Bionical. Eye-wink

Thanks for the tip on the Avanti, it looks like it is the go. Not just because they actually have bikes in stock* but it seems like a good bike and the staff at Narrabeen were great. The www.avantiplus.com.au/products/av500a009/title/a... looks like a pretty good bike and is an excellent price. From what I can see, the only downside, if I had to pick one, is the Tiagra brakes but from what I have read it seem that if you want to improve on them the advice is to buy better pads rather than upgrade to 105.

* I went to several other LBS in Sydney and they simply have nothing in my size. I find this curious because whilst I appreciate they sell out as the next year's model are arriving it appears that they are mostly not arriving for several months which, as in my case, means that they essentially miss out on several months of sales. Strange.

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