|race specific frame/ stem length||highcamp|
May 27, 2003 3:06 PM
|Recently moved from San Diego to Boulder - so no more triathlons, but whattya know, they've got this thing called cyclocross out here and it looks like an absolute blast. Now I need a bike. Not a commuter; not a beater;.. A racer. I've done an obscene amount of research into frame materials, dimensions, sizing, and whatnot but wanted to ask the forum here for their opinions.
First off, I've never ridden a road geometry bike for longer than a week, so I'm an ignoramus when it comes to sizing the things. I do, however, have a firm grasp of the principles of sizing as a result of racing tri's and time trials for several years. Still, coming from tube angles of 79 to now 73 and such is a definite change. My first plan of attack is dialing in my road geometry, then I'll work backwards from there into a cross geometry. (sound reasonable?)
Since this is going to be a racing bike, I'd prefer it to be light. or at least "lighter" (whatever that might mean to you). But I am on a budget, say $1500 or thereabouts, and quality components are of main priority to me (gunning for full Ultegra drivetrain single ring).
Now before everyone suggests ebay and the classifieds, let me say that I'm not too trusting of racing hard on equipment that I don't know the full history of (I disintegrated a mtb drivetrain while I was testing a guy's used bike, and a good tri friend of mine had the stem/bar assembly of his recently purchased used ride collapse during a steep descent.) . In sum, no used gear recommendations por favor.
I will be riding this thing on the road a good deal for training (possibly even 4-5 road races just for kicks) so a carbon fork would definitely be preferable.
My thoughts so far: Empella Bonfire, Ridley Crossbow or Crosswind, Bianchi Axis or Cross Concept, Redline Conquest Pro, Fuji Cross, Kona Jake. Again, $1500 or so is the mark. With bargain shopping for Ultegra and a decent wheelset I figure I can spend about $700 on frame+fork.
Lastly, I'm curious as to stem lengths for 'cross frames. I realize that stem lengths are
greatly dictated by body dimensions and application, but I figure that the uneven terrain of 'cross would necessitate a shorter upper limit for stem lengths than would a road bike (i.e. riding a 130 stem in cross might be asking for trouble... greater potential for going over the bars). So is there a "common" stem length that racers tend to gravitate towards?