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Lightspeed Ghisallo - where can I save some weight?(27 posts)

Lightspeed Ghisallo - where can I save some weight?kkenney
Nov 18, 2003 8:25 PM
I'm in the process of building up a 2003 Ghisallo and wanted to know if the experts had any suggestions on where I could save some weight but still keep it strong & comfortable enough for everyday riding.
The components are as follows:
*Fork - Alpha Q sub3 - 310g
*Fr & Rear Derailers '03 Dura-Ace
*Shift/Brake Levers - '03 STI Dura-Ace
*Brakes - USA Cat Claws 200g or less
*Cranks - FSA Superlight 510g
*Stem - FSA OS-115 ?g
*Handlebar - FSA K-wing 240g (not so light, but has ergonomic fit and internal cable routing)
*Seatpost - FSA K-Light 185g
*Saddle - Selle SLR Gel 175g
*Wheels - 04' Ksyrium SL 1500g
*Rim & Bar Tape?
*Water Bottle cages?

Any suggestions would be appreciated!
Looks light to mespookyload
Nov 18, 2003 10:04 PM
As for any won't need rim tape with the K's as they don't have spoke holes on the inside of the rim. The bar tape should be what you like, not the lightest. Tires could be the Veloflex Pave. They are very light at 185g but durable enough for daily use. For bottle cages look at the zipp carbon cages. They are fly weight and will match the carbon bar/post/fork. You might take a look at some Zipp 303 wheels too. Much lighter than the Mavics, and just as strong. I have been seeing the 2003 models going for $600-$700 online. Either way they are much more aero than the K's.
re: Lightspeed Ghisallo - where can I save some weight?gray8110
Nov 19, 2003 12:54 AM
Fork - Alpha Q sub3 - 310g
There are lighter forks out there - Easton's SLX is 295 and in the same price range (only 15-20 grams though)

Fr & Rear Derailers '03 Dura-Ace
Shift/Brake Levers - '03 STI Dura-Ace
Brakes - USA Cat Claws 200g or less
Cranks - FSA Superlight 510g
Stem - FSA OS-115 ?g
Deda Mag & ITM the stem are lighter (15-20 grams)

Handlebar - FSA K-wing 240g (not so light, but has ergonomic fit and internal cable routing)
Seatpost - FSA K-Light 185g
A bunch of ligher options from Deda, Easton, Stella Azurra

Saddle - Selle SLR Gel 175g
Wheels - 04' Ksyrium SL 1500g
There are lighter wheels if weight is your concern.
Zipp 303's were previously mentioned, Topolino, Campy Neutron's, American Classics (several) are all lighter in clincher form and the Campy & AC wheels can be less expensive.

Michelin Pro Race durable & light

Some people like Latex which seems to be less prone to pinch flats and is lighter but really can't be patched. I'd just get a good lightweight seamless butyl tube.

Rim & Bar Tape? If you get K's you don't use rim tape. Bar tape is a comfort issue & weight is not a concern there IMO.

Water Bottle cages?
American Classic, Tacx - there are a bunch and weight isn't a concern.

You didn't address your bottom bracket. If you are getting an FSA crank, I'd get the ISIS crank and go with the FSA Platinum Pro. Since you're getting lots of new DA stuff anyway, I'd just get the new DA Crank/BB combo which weighs in a mere 35 grams more than the FSA Crank BB combo and per VeloNews is much stiffer.
re: Lightspeed Ghisallo - where can I save some weight?Juanmoretime
Nov 19, 2003 2:32 AM
Agree with the veloflex Pave for tires. The cages I would get a set of cages from I'm using them and they work very well, the weight variates cage to cage, they are hand made. Mine weight 27.5 grams for the pair.
Thank you - I should have posted earlier!kkenney
Nov 19, 2003 6:34 AM
Thanks to all who contribute!
I have most of the parts already, so some of these weight saving tips might have to weight, but the tubes, tires, tape, cages, were a big help. I'll probably take your suggestions and get a light wheelset down the road which should shave off a pound or so.

I estimate this bike to come in around 13.5 lbs. with the K's, Dura-Ace, and FSA Components (I just got a great deal on the parts). When I have the extra cash flow, I will change everything again and go for the sub 12 lb bike!!

I'll post some pics when it's done - thanks for your help!
Just wondering...Nessism
Nov 19, 2003 7:21 AM
...but what is the purpose of the bike? What size? How much do you weigh?

More info is needed in order to critique your parts selection.
..then, get your drill press and.....mmmmm... Drillium.Spunout
Nov 19, 2003 7:49 AM
Drill out the frame too! Post pictures!
I know this sounds crazy, but...kkenney
Nov 19, 2003 8:34 AM
I'm just getting into it! And I don't like to have any excuses on equipment... I can only blame it on the motor.

I guess it's sort of a freakish hobby as well - I like to have the best... but not completely break the bank (plus I like to wheel & deal and support the local economy).

I'm 5'10", 170 lbs, and average build - this bike is mainly to improve fitness for mtn. biking, but hope to do some racing in the future. Unfortunately I am mainly a weekend warrior, so time limits me to some degree.

I sort of did the same thing with mtn biking 4 months ago. My first bike was the Santa Cruz VPP Blur with the new XTR, Easton Carbon post & handlebar, Fox Float Front & Rear, and Mavic Crossmax XL Tubeless, etc. Once again, I got a great deal on it, but man it was painfully watching the bike get worked on crashes... scratch here, gouge there... man that hurt.

I'm not talking about the stiches, road rash, cuts or bruises on myself... I'm talking about the bike.

Broken Bones Heal,
Chicks dig scars,
and Glory Lasts forever!
I hate to break it to you, but you're wasting money.MShaw
Nov 19, 2003 10:19 AM
If you've been riding for 4 mos, getting rid of a few extra pounds on your body is going to be much more effective than losing grams on your bike.

Secret #2 of cycling. Its not the bike. I know guys that can win on 23+ pound POS bikes, and guys riding 15 pound bikes that can't. Buying a $5000 bike as your first ride? Sure you don't wanna think about that?

Secret #3 of cycling. You WILL crash. Road crashes are usually a lot more painful/damaging to equiment than mtn crashes.

Secret #4. Litespeeds are for Freds.

So, what would I recommend? Go buy a Specialized S-Works, Giant AL, Cannondale, etc. frame to hang your chi-chi bits on if you MUST have them, or Ultegra/Chorus if you don't. By the time you figure out what's going on, THEN you'll be in a position to know the difference in performance between Ultegra and Dura Ace/Record.

Heck, there's a Leader bike ad right next to this. You can get an AL frame for $99 to abuse to your heart's content. Is that extra $3000 really a wise use of money? How do you know that the Ghisalo is the "best" bike for you? The geometry right? The sizes right? Once you get into riding seriously, things change: body position, etc. so now you have a seriously expensive paperweight that doesn't fit...

Then again, if you want to spend the money, who am I to stand in the way? I'll be shaking my head in confusion as you're struggling to figure out drafting on your $5000 bike...

That's my $.02. Listen to me know, hear me later.

You sound like my girlfriend - she's usually right!kkenney
Nov 19, 2003 10:57 AM
Thanks for the tips Mike - your probably right.
But with all the deals I got, it was hard to pass up. I'll have about $3700 into it when it is all said and done. So I guess I could turn around and sell for a nice profit if I wanted to (before I wreck it, that is).

Although this is my first road bike purchase, I had ridden dozens of different frames from a wide variety of manufacturers. Steel, Aluminum, carbon, titanium and combinations of each and the Litespeeds just felt the best (and the lifetime warranty doesn't hurt).

I had 2 different bike shops do a fit kit analysis on me and the M/L Ghisallo fit right in with the spec, not to mention it felt great on the test ride. And yes, I was able to do a test ride on one before I made the final decision.

Hopefully the ride quality and appearance of this bike will enspire me to get out and ride hard every opportunity I have.
Now, any tips on drafting - before I learn the hardway!
My $0.02Nessism
Nov 19, 2003 11:41 AM
Get a Tuscany, or Siena, with the stock Litespeed branded fork and go for a full Dura Ace kit (including the brakes and crank). Go 10 speed if you want to waste money. This should make for a super durable ride without compromise. The small amount of weight you give up is well worth it for the sake of durability.

As far as Litespeeds being for Freds, people feeling that way can go stuff it! Litespeed makes a fine frame that most people should respect (including snobish type roadies). There IS a risk of looking like a Fred if your legs are not up to the level of your ride. This is true of any bike, not just Litespeed. Further, this is particularly true when you are braking the stock group to add "special" parts such as fancy cranks/brakes - Dura Ace/Record not good enough for you?

Enjoy and keep it real.

For what you are spendingpedalAZ
Nov 19, 2003 10:46 AM
it makes no sense to get on that Ghisallo stock size unless you are dead certain it's a perfect fir. Get to a Serrotta dealer and go through a fitting exercise to confirm your appropriate sizing and geometry. As new as you are to the road, you need that third party expertise rather than the little you can port over from MTB.

Also, the saddle spec is too heavy for your weight goals. Check out the carbon shell saddles, including AX Lightness and get one under 100 grams. They are more comfortable, too.

You should be able to go 50-100 grams lighter on the wheelset for the same or less money through one of the on-line hand builders.

Between the saddle and the wheels, you'll pick up 1/3 lb.

What pedals are you planning? There are huge weight variances among the popular models.
Thank you - I should have posted earlier!al0
Nov 19, 2003 9:12 AM
Tubes - Conti Race 28 Light, they are quite light (~60g) but reasonably durable and not extremly expensive.

If you want save 10g more per tube try Conti Supersonic (tube, not tire!), but their everyday durability is quite questionable.
Ghisallo - Full Component Listingkkenney
Nov 19, 2003 11:36 AM
For those who are interested, here is a complete list of the parts I have in my posession or ones which will arrive this week.

The reason I chose these specific parts were because I could get great deals on them... either they were in a local shop who wanted to wheel & deal, Ebay purchases with no reserve, or good hook-ups with the mfg or distributors of said products.

I will be keeping my eye out for great deals on some of the items each of you mentioned to shave off some weight. But for now, I think we will have to close the check book for a while.

This should be a pretty sweet ride as is.

I have the estimated weights below, but won't know for sure until I'm finished.

Claimed (g)
Frame: 03 Litespeed Ghisallo M/L - Compact Goemetry 899g
Fork: Alpha Q Sub 3 310g
Cables & Housings: Dura-Ace 80g
Headset: Chris King 1 1/8" Threadless 126g
Headset Spacers: FSA Carbon 10g
Stem: FSA OS-115 31.8 x 110mm 115g
Handlebar: K-Wing 31.8 x 42cm 240g
Handlebar Tape: ? ?
Saddle: Selle Italia SLR XP Gel Flow 175g
Seatpost: K-Force Light 27.2 x 350mm 175g
Seat Binder: Litespeed OEM 12g
Front Derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace FD-7700 w/ clamp 83g
Rear Derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace RD-7700 195g
Shift & Brake Levers: Shimano Dura-Ace STI-7700 432g
Crank Set: FSA Superlight 172.5 mm 39/53 T., 9 spd 505g
Bottom Bracket: Shimano Dura-Ace BB-7700 68x109.5 mm 173g
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace 7700 12-21 155g
Chain: KMC X9 Narrow 229g
Brakes: USA CAT Claw 200g
Wheelset Front: Mavic Kysirium SSC SL '04 Front 660g
Wheelset Rear: Mavic Kysirium SSC SL '04 Rear 840g
Tyres: Michelin Pro Race 220g
Tubes: Latex or lightweight seamless butyl ?
Skewers: Mavic BR 601 Composite QR 100g
Pedals: Speedplay X-1 Ti 150g
Bottle Cage: ? ?
Computer: ? ?
Total: 6084g or 13 1/2 lbs.

Thanks for all the input!
there's no way....divve
Nov 19, 2003 12:02 PM's going to end up that light. From what I can see your weights are all manufacturer listed. I think it would be realistic count on 500g more. If you go '04 Campy Ergopower/derailleurs you'll save an additional 100g:)
check your mathpedalAZ
Nov 19, 2003 4:23 PM
most bikes use 2 tires, so try 440 instead of 220 grams for the rubber, and another 120-150 for the tubes.

Get bolt on skewers and save 35 grams.

Those CAT Claws are still prototpye production, so you may not be able to get them, and they do cost nearly $400. They also weigh in at 209, not 200. For $80 you can get Cane Creeks, weaker stoppers but 240 grams.
re: Ghisallo - Full Component Listing_jim_
Nov 19, 2003 10:32 PM
another guy with a virtual weight project. weigh the stuff. most manufacturers are off by some grams. your weights are optomistic at best. by the way, your part spec can be improved ten fold. here's a tip... drop those shizit mavic wheels, get an ax-lightness saddle, storck cranks, american classic headset, record ergos & derailleur... also prepare to spend much $. i've been through this
I'm done spending $$$ - here's why.kkenney
Nov 20, 2003 5:10 AM
OK... a lot of folks have been giving me a ration of s**t on this light weight project. As I stated before, those weights were "claimed" weights not actual and were meant merely as a rough estimate of the work in progress. Thanks for helping with the math.

All items will be weighed before assembly - so I will be able to share those with the rest of the critics who would like to know the actual weight of each component.

Yes, I could go lighter in almost every area, but that would cost a lot more money and the main reason I chose these components in the first place is becasue of the great deals I was getting. I don't have the hook-ups with the mfg. each of you recommended - only a couple of the ones listed here.

I'm going to put the new USA CAT Claws up for auction on Ebay (if you are interested, let me know), because I didn't really get a great deal on those and am finding it hard to justify their cost (even with the LBS discount). So... when you take those out and add up all the receipts, I will have spent a GRAND TOTAL of $3750. There are several sceptics out there who said I couldn't do it for that $$$, but it is a fact and the receipts prove it.

Most agree that it is a great deal - I'm sure I could turn around and sell it at make a $Grand or more!!!
Let us know when the cat claws go up for salepedalAZ
Nov 20, 2003 7:33 AM
or what you want for them. They are supposed to be good, just not $380 good for my project.
USA CAT Claws - will sell for $369 - shipped UPS Gr $0.0kkenney
Nov 20, 2003 10:11 AM
Thanks for your interest in the Brakes - I'll sell them for $369 and include free UPS Ground Shipping anywhere in the US. Absolutely will not ship outside US.

Everyone I have talked to says these are the best brakes out there: Lighter weight than Dura-Ace, Campy, and Cane Creek with more stopping power than all of them!

Here's the mfg website:

Or you can check out the BPT website which has switched out the brake pads to save 40 grams. The LBS Owner who has sold many of these with the lighter pads say that most switch back to the OEM pads because they have better stopping power and last a lot longer.

All sounds grand right! They are, I just can't afford them...

Let me know if you are intersted.
USA CAT Claws - will sell for $369 - shipped UPS Gr $0.0kkenney
Nov 20, 2003 12:16 PM
Thanks for your interest in the Brakes - I'll sell them for $369 and include free UPS Ground Shipping anywhere in the US. Absolutely will not ship outside US.

Everyone I have talked to says these are the best brakes out there: Lighter weight than Dura-Ace, Campy, and Cane Creek with more stopping power than all of them!

Here's the mfg website:

Or you can check out the BPT website which has switched out the brake pads to save 40 grams. The LBS Owner who has sold many of these with the lighter pads say that most switch back to the OEM pads because they have better stopping power and last a lot longer.

All sounds grand right! They are, I just can't afford them...

Let me know if you are intersted.
Hmmm.. 369 from someone on the net, or 379 from the manufacturerrussw19
Nov 22, 2003 11:18 PM
Tough choice there....

I'm done spending $$$ - here's why.MShaw
Nov 20, 2003 10:16 AM
For that same $3700, I could build up almost 4 complete bikes. ...and HAVE!

With Dura Ace 9sp no less.

I'm done spending $$$ - here's why._jim_
Nov 20, 2003 12:00 PM
well good luck with it. if you've 'only' sunk $3750, you're doing well thus far... i've spent a lot more than that lol
Easy - Wheels!!terzo rene
Nov 19, 2003 11:47 AM
You can cut almost 400g with American Classic carbon tubular wheels. Mine wound up at 1109g.

Depending on how much you can or want to spend there's also
- Ax Lightness carbon brake calipers 140g/pair
- Ax lightness saddle 69-98g depending on model
- Ax makes a seatpost too, but USE, Selcof, Deda are easier to get and all lighter than what you have. The ultimate is the one piece AX lightness saddle/seatpost starting at 115g.
- Record carbon cages are the lightest that will actually hold a bottle
- Calfee Barstem integrated. Uses any 31.8 carbon bar and molds the stem directly to it. Maybe 50 g savings plus no crushing the carbon bars with a clamp.
- Really don't need bar tape with cables routed internally
- change to campy record ergo levers and r der.
- Didn't mention what kind of BB you are using but an AC or Extralite ISIS with the superlight cranks is about as light as you can get - and they still use steel spindles.
- Transfil Flying Snake carbon or Nokon alloy cable housings.
- Speedplay X-1 pedals too

Also get a scale and weigh your stuff. Claimed weights are sometimes WAY off (like FSA's).
Profit Motive - Rude AwakeningFez
Nov 20, 2003 8:10 AM
You have made several references as to how little money you have put into this ($3700) and how you can turn it around for a quick $1000 profit.

Good luck.

All 2003 Litespeeds are blown out at steep discounts at the end of a model year. Nobody pays anything close to retail on those things, especially at the end of the model year.

Add to that the used bike market is pretty soft, especially for those you expect to sell for $3000+. Your potential pool of buyers is very slim at that point. And those who do spend that kind of money on a bike are most likely a little picky on the components. They may not want the way you built it.

I'm not saying you shouldn't do this project if it floats your boat. But you shouldn't expect there will be a sucker out there ready to pay $4700 for it next year after you've ridden it for a while.

P.S. You could lose the most weight by changing the wheels.
Winter tires???? The best ?? Brand model ??Alpaca
Nov 20, 2003 12:10 PM
What are some of the best Winter tires???? Manufacturers just offer info on dry tires.