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LeMond and Bianchi Advice Sought(2 posts)

LeMond and Bianchi Advice SoughtCrowLegs
Jul 4, 2001 9:40 AM
Hi all. I have a familiar story: out of road cycling for too many years and itching to get back into it. I've done the research and talked to the LBS in the area (Cincinnati). At this point, I've picked a shop I'm comfortable with. They have two bikes I'm interested in. The main contender is the LeMond Nevada City. The other one is the Bianchi Brava.

Both seem like good choices. I am going to test ride them this week and buy one. The Brava is $100 cheaper (729 vs 829) and comes with clipless pedals, but the LeMond seems to have a better frame. Componetry is similar (sora, etc).

Anyone out there care to share some specifics of these two machines? Anything specific I should look for when testing? Any advice would be appreciated. This is a great site with lots of helpful folks.
I can give some insight...Mabero
Jul 4, 2001 9:59 AM
This is actually pretty comical cause I own the Bianchi Brava and my girlfriend now owns the Lemond Neveda City. Because of this I can give pretty good recommendations for both so here goes.

I bought the Bianchi Brava a year ago but was poorly sized to me from a LBS that was just trying to make a sale on someone who didn't know JACK about road bikes. So now I bought and own a Cannondale R2000si. As I am waiting for my Canny to come I of course am still riding my Brava.

The Brava has a better component package with better wheels (Mavic Cxp 21 vs. Aurora on the Lemond). The real difference in compononents other than the obvious is that the Lemond is not a full sora package! It has generic calipers and generic (Aurora) hubs. But does this really matter? No.

The Lemond on the other hand is a Reynolds 853 frame with Reynolds 520 seat stays (the Bianchi is a full Reynolds 520), so the Lemond is a better frame and lighter I think by about a pound (I am not positive about how much exactly). Also remember that the Geometry of the Lemond has a longer top tube to give, IMHO, a flatter and more Aerodynamic posture on the bike. I think the the biggest weakness in the Bianchi is that is very weak in the stiff category. The 520 frame flexes a lot basically because steel is weaker but also the Reynolds 520 is not built as good as the 853.

Also subtle differences is in the tires. The Bianchi comes with 700x23 and the Lemond comes with 700x25 which means the Bianch might roll a little bit faster. But the Lemond might feel more comfortable.

To me at this level, I would buy the best frame and upgrade accordingly. For instance one of the biggest advantages of the CAAD series on the Cannondales is that if you buy their $800 R300 with the CAAD3 frame it has the same geometry as the higher ones and the frame quality itself is just as good as the CAAD4, 5, and 6. They are almost the same frames. Those frames are easy to upgrade on.

Not to keep rambling, but I would buy the Lemond. It's a slightly better frame, buy clipless cause the LBS will give a discount anyway, plus the Ritchey pedals on the Bianchi are heavy mountain bike spd's and haven't performed well for me on the road. (i.e. I have popped out many times on hills unexpectedly thus resulting in near crashes).
As for the wheels just buy the Spinergy Spox R2 on sale at Supergo or upgrade the wheels later.

Either way I really wish I knew what I knew not and I would have bought a Cannodale or a Lemond steel.

Sorry for long reply...I just have had a lot of experience with both these bikes.