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Decisions Decisions(13 posts)

Decisions DecisionsTriNewbe
Apr 15, 2002 11:55 AM
I am currently in the market for a road bike and am new to the sport. Luckily, I have a tax refund coming and would like to buy a new bike.

1st Question: Which bike is best for deal?

Cannondale R900 - Ultegra and 105 componentry, aluminum frame, basic wheel set - $1780

Trek 2300 Series - Ultegra componentry, aluminum frame, race wheel set, $1730

Bianchi Vigorello - Ultegra, steel frame, basic wheel set, $1730

2nd Question: I am 6 feet 220. All three bikes seemed comfortable on test ride. What is best for me steel or aluminum. Each shop had arguments for both. I am new to road biking and am planning to do some olypmic triathlons and weekend road biking

3rd Question: Bianchi Vigorello with Ultegra is $1730. Bianchi Imola with 105 is $1300. Is the next level of components worth the $400 bucks.

Thanks for any help.
re: Decisions Decisionseschelon
Apr 15, 2002 12:17 PM
I'm not a big fan of steel because of the low "tech geek" factor...but I would probably stay away from the C'dale and go for the Trek 2300 because of the Ultegra group and "race wheel" set or the Bianchi Vigorello. I've ridden 105's and they are nice for riding and racing...however, my racing has stepped up a notch this year so I chose to get a bike with Ultegra and the quality of shifts is noticeable.

It just depends on mainly how important it is for you to get that next level of improvement (105 to Ultegra)?????? You can easily get by with the 105...but do you want to get by or spend the extra doe for that little bit of "magic" of using Ultegra?
low "tech geek" factor...??????????????Ken of Fresno
Apr 15, 2002 12:56 PM
I don't know about that. Reynolds 853 is an air hardening alloy that when welded above a certain temp actually increases in strength producing stronger joints than alu or some ti. Reynolds won't sell it to manufacturers that can't meet their specs. It's a harder material that's less likely to dent than alu. If you have an ultralight alu frame like the C'Dales I'd be carefull about not gripping the downtube too tightly. They can be crushed by hand. Also, good steel just feels soooo nice. I rode a Cannondale for too many years before I switched to my 853 Zurich. I used to wonder why I got beat up so much on those long rides. Now I know. I am a believer. Steel IS real.
be careful! you will make the board madecentury2
Apr 15, 2002 1:22 PM
ken ~ if you state that steel rides better than Aluminum or Ti ~ lots of people will get made and rant of days about you being silly or a spamer (by the way - do you work for Lemond?)
I'm not trying to push any buttons...Ken of Fresno
Apr 15, 2002 3:02 PM
I'm just stating my preferences based on my experiences. Your milage may vary. No, I don't work for Lemond. And, the truth be told, I don't particularly like riding a bike with someone else's name on it. At the time I was looking for abike with specific geometry and riding characteristics and just happened to find what I wanted in the Zurich. I am now much happier than I expected I would be with my two year old bike. Isn't that what's most inportant? Find what makes YOU happy, and all is well. My soon to be next new bike is going to be Ti, so I may change my tune again. At least I hope so.

re: Decisions Decisions - time for more researchcentury2
Apr 15, 2002 12:19 PM
My feeling is you should try going to and looking up bikes under their 'bikefinder' funtion. A button on the home page.
I prefer steel; but I am older and ride long distances. If you are younger and ride fast for short rides; you may perfer Aluminum.
Also there are lots of good bikes that are better values than the 3 you mentioned. You can get a New 2002 Ultegra bike for $1100 to $1200 ~ with carbon fork and nice wheels.
good luck
Apr 15, 2002 4:08 PM
I would take a look at the Raleigh R700 as well as a Lemond Zurich before making any hard and fast decisions...I would also consider going for a whole bike that costs a little less and putting the extra money into a wheel upgrade...some of the wheels that are spec'd with some of those bikes use hubs that can work against your confidence at speed...just a thought, no need for flames =)
Bikefinder Results are Interesting:joeg26er
Apr 15, 2002 7:22 PM

Yikes, that is a looooong URL.

Lemond = Trek I did not know they are the same company - isn't that weird? Both of those are actually the worst deals when you compare the components that are specified. Both the Lemond and Trek have crappy Tiagra hubs and No Name brakes while the others have at least 105 level.

From the comparison, the Iron Horse and the Motobecane are the best deals in that range.
re: Is the next level of components worth the $400 bucks.SteveO
Apr 16, 2002 3:21 AM
my personal opinion- no.
the weight savings is negligible (as usual). quality of 105 is certainly more than adequate. I personally (as well as many others) wont realize 400 bucks worth of enjoyment or performance out of the upgrade.
400 bucks? if you shop you can save it and get Ultegra.pcwheels
Apr 16, 2002 6:30 AM
I did a lot of looking in Austin ~ and I just bought a Mercier Serpens for $1255 on sale - it has Ultegra and a Reynolds frame and fork. My local shop (cycle360) had it as on sale for this month. So I think you can find lots of good bikes at great prices if you look.
dont get me wrong....SteveO
Apr 16, 2002 6:38 AM
i'd never turn down a free upgrade; but if my final, single selection of bike had a choice of components, i'd opt for the cheaper group, regardless of the differential (assuming, of course, we're still comparing 105 to ultegra).
It can't be all componentspmf1
Apr 16, 2002 7:12 AM
The difference in a 105 group vs. a Ultegra group is $100 or less. There must be other things on the bike that are upgrades too (i.e., the frame, saddle, post, rims, tires, etc). If all is exactly the same, then you'd be crazy to pay $400 more for Ultegra.
yeah, agree...SteveO
Apr 16, 2002 9:29 AM
i wasnt thinking earlier... a complete groupo upgrade can be had for 100 bucks. 400 would be closer to 105-DA upgrade.

regardless.... i'd still rather have the 100 bucks.