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R800 vs TCR2(14 posts)

R800 vs TCR2Ryan
Oct 19, 2001 10:44 AM
I'm looking into buying my first road bike soon. All shop that I talk to are recommending these. Which is a better bike for 2-4 hour rides and the occasional race?

Thanks,
re: R800 vs TCR2Indiana Rider
Oct 19, 2001 11:15 AM
I have a TCR2 and love the bike. I don't think you will find a better value anywhere. The 105 group works very well. The Carbon fiber fork and seat post and seat rails are holding up great. The cinelli bar and stem are very nice. I am a fan of the TCR obivously. I recently destroyed a Trek 2300 and replaced it with this bike. I like this better than my 2300 (which BTW was also a good entry level bike. I can't knock it at all.) Good Luck. Scott
re: R800 vs TCR2nigel
Oct 19, 2001 11:30 AM
Except for the first-road-bike part, I was in a similar position about a year ago. My decision to buy the TCR2 was based on these things:

1) Looks. I must admit that, once I spied the gorgeous Giant (the yellow/grey paint, VERY sloping top tube--in size small, "that fork," and "that seatpost"), I made up my mind. I was willing to forgo things for that look, since it did such things for the must-have-aesthetic side of me.

2) Fit. On "trying on" the Cannondale, I had a tough time getting a proper fit. Basic crotch clearance (and I'll get a million different arguments that this doesn't determine a frame's fitting or not) was nil on the C'dale, whereas I had proper space (at last!) with the small TCR2.

3) Components. The TCR2 came with a FULL 105 group and Open Pro rims (like many of the pros race/train on); the C'dale, by strong contrast, had a hodge-podge of 105, Coda (C'dale components), and a couple of no-namers thrown in to keep costs down. The cost, I'll add, was already a hundred or two more than the modestly priced Giant.

I've got 3,000+ miles on my TCR2 so far, and I'm exceedingly happy with it: the smoothness, the handling, the componentry, feel, comfort, and the pure fun of riding it. Another completely fringe benefit: cyclists and non-cyclists alike compliment it ALL the time. (I suppose they saw what I saw in it; looks DO matter!)

Since I hadn't ridden the C'dale (fit, remember), I cannot make any sort of comparison between the two. For pure value alone, I can't see anything coming close to the components, frame, fork, and design of the Giant. I could be wrong, but I guess I'll never know. No complaints at all with the TCR. If you check the review section, you'll see my write-up. I own the 2000 model, by the way, not the 2001.

One more note: if one does fit and the other doesn't (or poses troubles when getting proper reach and other fit criteria), then I'd suggest getting the one that really fits you better. You'll perform better and be happier and much more comfortable. Fortunately, the Giant was a perfect fit for me.

Cheers, and happy shopping.
Nige
re: R800 vs TCR2morrison
Oct 19, 2001 11:32 AM
Much depends on your size and body demensions. If you are muscular, or big, the Cannondale will give you a better ride. I'm not a big fan of the TCR-2, but I know a lot of people who really like it. One suggestion . . . you may want to consider the R900 SI instead of the R800. It is only a few hundred bucks more, and the CAAD 5 is definitely superior to the 4. Also, the forks are carbon, and the gearing is definitely superior. For some reason, it's hard to find the R900 as a double, so make sure you have them convert from a triple.

Good luck.
I don't get you, Morrison.nigel
Oct 19, 2001 12:28 PM
First, let me state that I'm not questioning you simply because I dig my TCR; your answers seem unjustifiable.

Aren't the pros muscular? They're certainly about as strong as you'll get on a bike. How will the C'dale give you a "better ride" if you're bigger or more muscular? I fail to see the sense in this at all, and would enjoy reading your reasoning behind this. I've just heard the opposite, actually. Since the frame's stiffer (more efficient), it'll transfer power better from the rider to the pedals. I also know that smaller frames can be harsher (shorter tubes generally equal harsher rides) than larger ones. Thus, a large TCR would be stiff and efficient, but not harsh (certainly not with that long seatpost).

Also, you say you're "not a big fan of the TCR-2"; have you ridden them enough to qualify yourself as "not a fan," or do you dislike the looks of them or because they're Giants? Or, possibly, you're against the whole "sloping top tube trend." Either way, advising someone against a bike because YOU'RE not a big fan doesn't help THEM out at all. If you've tried a TCR and didn't like it, then it would help much more to state what it was that you didn't like about it.

One last point: when someone's buying a first (any type of) bike, "a few hundred more" generally puts a bike out of range. Ryan here (the original poster) is obviously looking to spend about $1400 or so, not a few hundred more, which makes it closer to $2000.

I'm not hatin' ya, but I don't think your subjective opinions--not seemingly based on fact--will help our friend Ryan to make an educated choice. Whichever one's best for HIM is the bike he should buy.

Nige
re: R800 vs TCR2cioccman
Oct 19, 2001 12:56 PM
Well, firstly, there are Giant likers and haters, Dale likers and haters, sloping haters and likers. I'm none of those categories but I'm not a fan of the sloping top tube, simply because of the look. There is no significant reason in my opinion to either go with or stay away from a sloped bike. I see no reason *for me* to get away from a traditionally shaped frame. All of my rigs are incredibly stiff.

That being said, you need not limit yourself between those two bikes. 2001 models are just about being given away these days at places like Helen's and Supergo. For $1400 at Supergo, you'll have the pick of the litter and probably be able to walk away with a full Ultegra group to boot. You might not be on an exact R800 or TCR2 though. Who cares? What if you find a Klein or Lemond or Specialized or Trek that fits perfectly and is the right price? Go with it! At the $1400 level you'll find most of these bikes are almost completely interchangeable. Don't matter what's painted on the side. If you're new to riding, you'll have not too much opinion on what fits right anyway, you simply don't know. Furthermore, fit changes when you improve you skills anyway. You'll want to improve your aero position, etc. So, pick a price and go shopping. Supergo is the perfect place for a road rookie, so much to choose from.
Which do you prefer Helen's or Supergo?giles
Oct 19, 2001 1:21 PM
Ciccoman,

I assume you live in LA. Do you have a preference between Supergo and Helen's. I find the service better at Helen's and prices better at supergo.

Giles
Helen's in MDRCrash
Oct 19, 2001 2:51 PM
If you are looking for a road bike Helen's in Marina Del Ray is the place to go. They have all of the big brand models plus the limited edition imports. They specialize in road bikes and will make sure the fit is right on whatever you buy. Supergo is a nice place to buy clothes and components, especially when they are having their once a month sale. You can get a great price on a bike there, if you know exactly what you want and work on your own bikes.
A lot of SoCal people like I Martin Imports in Hollywood as well.
I'll second Helen's MDRmickey-mac
Oct 19, 2001 3:11 PM
Helen's MDR is a good road shop with a nice and knowledgeable staff. Its manager, Scott, is a great guy who knows how to take care of his customers.
Six of oneMel Erickson
Oct 19, 2001 2:30 PM
half dozen of the other. As the mantra goes, go with the one that fits. Fit is probably somewhat vague to you though, being new to roading, so go with what feels the best. Have the shop set up both for you as best they can and try them out. Go for as extended a ride as the shop will permit. Check out Colorado Cyclists fit information. You might also consider the Fuji Team and the Raleigh R700. Both should be available in your price range and come with mostly Ultegra, which is an upgrade from 105.
been there done thatJohnG
Oct 19, 2001 3:13 PM
I don't know squat about the components on these two bikes but I do know a bit about the frames. I'll prefice this by stating I'm 145# and not real keen of harsh rides.

I built a C10 equiped Dale and really tried to "make it work". I put a little over 1K miles on the Cadd5 frame earlier this year. It was OK but I thought the front end in particular was way too harsh. The rear felt OK though. The bike handled fine and would make a good race frame. The styling of the tubset is VERY ugly IMHO. The downtube in particular looks aweful. Looks like a novice ME designed this thing. The frame is definately race worthy and built strong though.

I've got about 1500 miles on a new TCR build and I think this frame is well balanced from a comfort point of view. Pretty neutral handling.... no real surprises here. Overall, I very impressed with the stiffness AND comfort of this frame. The sloping TT takes some getting used to..... in fact I don't really care for it from a style point of view. The frame is a fair bit lighter than the Dale. If you are a Clyde I wouldn't recommend this frame.

IMHO, from an overal ride quality point of view: if you are > 160# I'd recommend the Dale otherwise stick with the TCR. Other than that you should make up your mind based on the components and dealer support. I suspect that either of these bikes would make a decent entry level "race" bike.

good luck with whatever you get.
JohnG
been there done thatrstel66
Oct 20, 2001 8:07 AM
I weigh 195 lbs, and I've been riding and racing a 2001 TCR-1. This is a great bike for crits with it's sharp handling. I have had no problems with the frame in that regard, its quite stiff and has held up for the last racing season. I don't see weight being an big issue on recommending this frame as I have seen a few "clydes" riding the TCR. Ride quality has been great IMHO....

Ride on!!!
been there done thatJohnG
Oct 20, 2001 2:16 PM
No doubt the TCR is a good race frame even for heavier folks...... I was just trying to give real conservative advice. Between the two frames the poster asked about I still say the Dale is the more "robust" of the two.

ride hard.... :0)
JohnG
re: R800 vs TCR2John-d
Oct 21, 2001 2:58 AM
Just been down the same route. Here in the UK I tried 8 different Giant dealers. Generally the reply was "Don't stock TCRs if you really want one we will order it for you." How do I know what size to order? Answer - Well there wasn't one.

The Cannondale dealer gave me three to try round a 2 mile circuit. A R500, R800, R4000. The R800 is superb. Smooth and fast.

So, my advice is choose a good dealer, try the bike and go with that.