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Wanna help me pick a bike?(14 posts)

Wanna help me pick a bike?ALLEN phx.
Aug 20, 2001 7:02 PM
Iv'e narrowed it down to:
-Trek 5500 w/D-Ace
-Trek 5900 Superlight w/D-Ace
-LS Palmares w/D-Ace
-LS Vortex w/D-Ace

I'm 16, 5'10", 120 lbs...(yeah, a goat). I don't think I'll grow any more. I ride about 5 days a week. I'm getting fast pretty quick, so I want to start racing; and a Trek 1000 with Sora, (current ride), is not what I want to race with. I know, "it's not about the bike", blah, blah, blah, but money isn't really an object, and why not get a top-of-the-line bike if you got the money?

Do you think I should wait for the 2002 Trek's, (5500 & 5900), to come out?...they would have the Bontrager wheels right? Is Litespeed doing anything new for 2002? Does anyone have any of these bikes? Other recommendations? But no AL bikes, (to harsh for me). Anything at all would help.

I don't know those bikes, butmike mcmahon
Aug 20, 2001 7:44 PM
I wouldn't be so sure that you're done growing. I did a lot of growing between 16 and 19, adding at least a couple of inches and surpassing my dad by about 4" in the process. On the bright side, such a growth spurt would give you a good reason to buy a new bike in a few years. Have fun shopping.
re: Wanna help me pick a bike?Hank
Aug 20, 2001 7:51 PM
well, I can see you like DA. But otherwise you have "narrowed" your decision down to two pretty different types of bikes - OCLV vs. LS. There are actually a lot of people who have posted with this same "narrowed" choice, so you should find a lot by going through the archives (Trek vs. LS, crabon vs. ti, etc.). However, I'd do a bit more research first, maybe consider some other options? For example, if carbon floats your boat, there's also Look, Calfee, etc. And if you like ti, well LS isn't the only game in town. And don't rule out steel! Check out Steelman, IF, Ritchey, Ibis, etc. (I'll go ahead and say right now that for racing at your age (ie crashing), getting knocked around in cars and dorm rooms, I'd take ti or steel over carbon). But mostly I'd really study up on the whole fit thing, and see if you can ride some bikes. I'd also assume that you WILL grow a bit more more--at least an inch (though I bought my first good bike when I was 15 and it's the same size I ride at age 33, so...) Anyway, search through the archives, do some research, go ride some bikes and come back with more questions. Good luck.
re: Wanna help me pick a bike?David Feldman
Aug 21, 2001 7:29 AM
The 5900 has a proprietary fork/headset system--this will be difficult to service later; it's a "stupid-light" thing on Trek's part. You may be too light to find any of these comfortable, you shouldn't buy any of these without at least an hour's test ride that includes the worst road surface you can find. At y our weight, consider titanium without oversized and ovalled tubes, also consider the lightest steel frames--Bianchi Boron, for instance, custom domestic frames using columbus Foco.
Most of my cars haveSteeve
Aug 21, 2001 8:04 AM
cost less than the bikes you have selected!

When I was 16, my only mode of self-transportation was my road bike. (Anyone remember a French bike called Juenet model 820?) I rode that bike everywhere, all thru high school and it was even more important when I moved away from my family at college.
Go TiChris Zeller
Aug 21, 2001 10:17 AM
If money is truly "no object" the choice is simple, go with the LS Palameras, that is probably one of the lightest bikes on your list and certainly one of the best rides. I recently bought an Airborne Carpe Diem Ti bike. I test rode all of the above and found the Ti breeds to have all of the light weight of carbon/aluminum with the ride of steel. It just feels right. I think Airborne bikes are an excellent value, and for a light tourer, the Carpe Diem was great. Their Zepplin or new Manhattan Project racebikes are great values too but it sounds like value is not on your list.

LS is comming out with a new top end bike for 2002. I think this will replace the Palamares and is supposed to be lighter with a new alloy. You might snag a closeout Palamares, or maybe you'd rather wait for the newest best thing. I'd also consider Seven bikes. They make a carbon/Ti combination that is right up there with the Palamares. More customized options and pricier I'd imagine.

Have fun with whatever you choose.
Aug 21, 2001 1:08 PM
If money is no object I'd go with the Palamares also. I saw a review on OLN last year by Davis Phinney on the Palamares. Out of four stars he rated the Palamares with six. He said it was the perfect ride. I can't compare, but I'm riding al now, next bike will be steel, then I'll venture into ti.

I've also heard about headset bearing problems with the 5900.
Palmares is too stiff...C-40
Aug 21, 2001 1:31 PM
At 120 lbs. you'll regret getting something as stiff as the Palmares. The Vortex would be OK, but it's also a waste of money. A Tuscany is more than stiff enough. At your weight, paying hundreds of dollars just to save a few ounces makes no sense. You'll always have an easy time on the hills and a tough time on the flats, where light weight is of little advantage.

I weigh 135 and I've owned a number of frames that I haven't enjoyed because they rode too harshly. My most recent poor frame choice was a Litespeed Ultimate. I've now sworn off all frames with significantly oversized or bladed tubes. The stiffness is wasted on us lightweights.

If money is no object, consider a Colnago C-40. The ride is fantastic, and it's ultralight. The frame, fork, stem and seatpost can be had for as low as $2500 from or

Lastly, wise up and get Campy Chorus or Record 10 speed.
No Campy for me...ALLEN phx.
Aug 21, 2001 2:52 PM
Record and Chorus are definetly a works of art, but the Shimano hoods fit my hands better.

This might sound stupid, but It's really hard deciding on a bike when you don't have a $ limit.

Thanks everyone. I think I might add LOOK & Colnago to my list.
Aug 21, 2001 3:34 PM
You haven't ridden the ergo levers set up properly. Getting the levers positioned on the bar with a slight upward angle to the hoods, routing both cables on the front side of the bar, and placing some properly located thin foam padding makes all the difference in the world. It does take more time and patience than some people have.

I recently switched to Easton EC-90 carbon fiber bars, and had to try several times to get the levers just where I wanted them. I suffered discomfort for a while, until I got everything just right again.
the Seven Ti/CFrib-eye
Aug 21, 2001 3:47 PM
mix is called the Odonata (they make in it steel/ti as well). Price is $3,100 (steel is $2,200). It is one of the most beautiful bikes I've seen. Seven typically makes custom frames from measurements supplied by your LBS. Of course you LBS probably doesn't have a demo sitting around so that's a draw back.
Worth considering...Tig
Aug 21, 2001 4:41 PM
For carbon, take a good look at the Look KG281 (no pun intended!). For Ti, try Serotta's Legend Ti. Not that LS is anything but a great bike, but the better quality and perfect fit from Serotta puts it at the top of the Ti's.
re: Wanna help me pick a bike?junior racer
Aug 21, 2001 5:09 PM
if ur just getting in to racing then why do you feel compelled to blow all of your money on the most expensive bike you can find. I f you have not understood this concept yet the pros ride those bikes because they get them for free and if you do go with one of the bikes you have listed your bike will be way better than anybody you are up against. You have probably heard it before but its not the bike its the engine behind it.
re: Wanna help me pick a bike?ALLEN phx.
Aug 21, 2001 6:51 PM
Well, I wouldn't really be blowing off all of my's $1.2 million. Also, I do understand that the pro's get there bikes for free.

What would you do if you saw a Trek 2300 & a Trek 5900 sitting side-by-side at your LBS? Go for the 2300? I didn't think so. Oh Yeah, the engine is fine.

BTW, sorry if this post sounded mean.