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Any faster with that new "dream" bike?(22 posts)

Any faster with that new "dream" bike?rcarbs
Aug 15, 2002 7:56 AM
I was wondering if any of you actually rode any faster with your new lighter more expensive bike? I have heard how that lightwieght "flys up hills", but what about your average speeds on your average training rides? My 98 Bianchi Veloce weighs about 21 lbs and I have no problem keeping up with others in group rides riding on their $4000 hi tech lightweights. I am considering getting one of those and wasn't sure what to expect when it comes to increased performance.
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?rob45
Aug 15, 2002 8:17 AM
in the early days of lighter bikes--when Hinault and Lemond were working with Look etc--they did some studies using power output to compare times up various climbs with different equipment. The differences were pretty impressive, like on the order of minutes. I'm sure there's a site on the web showing time savings as a function of bike weight for some constant grade/distance. If you got yourself a bike that saved four pounds the difference in feel would bowl you over. A light bike won't make a bad climber good, but it will definitely make a good climber even better.
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?netso
Aug 15, 2002 8:33 AM
When I bought my Canny r4000si, weight 16+ lbs. Performance did improve, particularly on hills. I was riding a Ciocc Mockba steel prior.
a place to test your theories..Jekyll
Aug 15, 2002 8:36 AM
4 lb. lighter bike = 25 seconds or 100m on 5000m-8% climb (nm)dirthead
Aug 15, 2002 8:38 AM
So only difference between a C40 and a Huffy is a few pounds? nmelviento
Aug 15, 2002 11:52 AM
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?bcm119
Aug 15, 2002 8:38 AM
I don't have a super light bike, but its the lightest bike I've ever owned and it has made me a better cyclist. The reason is that it is more fun to ride, and I end up riding more often. I do alot of commuting, and its come to the point where I can't walk past my bike in the morning to the car- its just too tempting to take that beauty out into the morning sun. This wasn't the case with my old mediocre road bike. I'll bet a new bike would take you to a new level simply because it would increase your enjoyment of the sport.
Keeping it realisticfiltersweep
Aug 15, 2002 9:14 AM
Keep in mind, TT bikes, where acceleration and hills rarely are an issue, are generally heavier but more aero than a road bike.

It definitely is not all about the weight of the bike- it has been said here a million times, it is the total package weight including rider. Even picking up a 20 lb bike and then a 17 lb bike, it is difficult to really feel the difference.

I wouldn't expect a miracle in performance by upgrading.

I think the most significant issue is "ride quality" between my old and new bike. New bike has carbon all over that smoothes the ride, and better components that have less nagging performance issues (the shifting delays, the creaky BB, etc...), and simply a better geometry. I'm using the same wheelset and seat, so those variables haven't changed. There is also something to be said about handpicking each part in a custom build if you are a control freak- there are no mystery OEM parts it.
Aug 15, 2002 8:47 AM
I'm way faster on my lightweight road ride than my 34lb commuter.
Aug 15, 2002 9:12 AM
I recently got a used LeMond Chambery as an upgrade from my old Bianchi Campione. I have found the difference remarkable. Going from a pretty traditional steel bike (25 lbs.?) to a sub-20 lb. aluminum bike with carbon fork has made a huge difference.

Not only is the LeMond stiffer and hence more efficient, but it is more aerodynamic and of course lighter. I find that the hills I used to grind up I can now push harder and faster. I was amazed to see my speeds 2-3 mph higher on stretches of road where I used to crawl on my Bianchi.

This bike rewards my effort by almost propelling me up hills. I find myself out of the saddle more, attacking hills rather than settling back in the saddle for a slog.

I am a heavier rider (200 lbs.) and this was the best thing I could have done for myself. I can finally hang with the pack on climbs.

Maybe it's psychological but whatever works!
Yes, but no quantitative studies to provecyclinseth
Aug 15, 2002 9:23 AM
My previous bike was a Kestrel 200sci. Not exactly a clunker. I think, stripped down, with the light wheels it was about 18.5lbs. My new bike, custom IF Ti Crown Jewel is is a hair over 16lbs, with exact same components. The main difference being, my kestrel was 3cm too big.
What I first noticed was the handling. When I first rode my new bike home from the shop the thing was so twitchy (even with my 3-cross wheels) it was almost like I had to re-learn how to ride a bicycle.
I also didn't get a chance to ride them back-to-back. I was actually off the bike entirely for about a month or so (rainy weekends and brand new bicycle don't mix).
Because of a proper fit, I am much more comfortable on the bike. Riding in the drops now feels totally natural. But this is all an issue of proper fit.
On my Kestrel I topped out at 50.1mph when front-end shimmy would start. On IF my top speed is 55.1 and I felt in total control, I felt like I could have gone 5mph faster if I hadn't run out of descent. So in that regard, I am faster.
More noticeable than a lighter, proper fitting bicycle was losing 16lbs of blubber wieght and a new set of Dave's Aerolites (former on the climbs, later for acceleration).

However, there is absolutely NO comparison between the IF and my '91 Trek 1200. I don't know how I ever rode that beast farther than the grocery store.

Hope this helps
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?aliensporebomb
Aug 15, 2002 9:34 AM
Huge, major difference.

My old road bike was a 27 pound clunker (that's with
no underseat bag or water bottle attached).

My mountain bike is 32 pounds.

To move from that to a 17-18 lb. road bike was like
getting a rocket ship. Much faster for longer periods
of time.

Even formerly annoying hills are do-able now without
hyperventilating in the process.

I now will try and lose some weight myself which can only
maybe not .... but im a lot sexier :-)Spirito
Aug 15, 2002 9:56 AM
my new bike cost less than my old bike but its a lot prettier and a little heavier.

guess what - my speed seems to be about the same.

not a lot i'm afraid, but it will be more fun to rideColnagoFE
Aug 15, 2002 10:41 AM
maybe a little advantage when climbing, but flats are pretty much a wash.
Aug 15, 2002 11:32 AM
I am faster on my newer 3000-5000 dollar bikes than I was on my older bunch of 2500-3000 dollar rides.
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?getoffmywheel
Aug 15, 2002 12:46 PM
Honestly, I don't think it makes a difference in performance. Maybe with a $400 bike that weighs 30 lbs but not a steel frame with 105 or Veloce. But, I think it feels better than the old bike. I can't explain it other than saying it feels bueatiful and I aways look forward to riding it. It's the engine that counts, but you might enjoy yourself a little bit more. If you have to justify it to your wife, lie and say yes it makes a big difference and you have to have it. Good luck.
A little bit, depending.djg
Aug 15, 2002 1:36 PM
A lighter bike, all things equal, will climb a bit better and accelerate a bit more rapidly than a heavier bike. I don't have the models at my fingertips, but maybe some of the other posts are pointing you to good information. But marginal weight savings, while critical from some folks' points of view, will not result in spectacularly improved performance. Same for improved lateral stiffness. So don't expect to shave half a pound (or even four pounds) from your bike and turn a tough 11 mph climb into an easy 15 mph climb--it ain't gonna happen (except in the highly unlikely case where you were operating very close to some entirely idiosyncratic physiological threshhold).

Same wheels? You'll roll about the same on the flats, even if you do drop the weight overall.

That's why you can keep up with folks on more expensive bikes, even when the other folks are not much different in their fitness from you.

So what can you expect? That depends what you get. You'll probably get something that will--for a given input--go a little faster, at least in certain conditions (remember "for a given input"). You might get something that actually handles better (even at the same weight), allowing you to corner faster or descend faster. You might get something more comfortable, which can certainly help your performance on long rides (or in long races) by helping you keep fresh (there are different versions of the "better position" option--these can yield short term and/or long-term comfort or better aerodynamics, etc.). You might get something that just feels subjectively better--that won't make you go faster by itself (unless it gets you more excited about training). Or looks cooler, etc.

Hell, you might get something terrible.

What you view as "a little" improvement or "a lot" is partly a subjective matter, as is the related question about how much you should care about a given improvement in some regard or other. Personally, I'm very happy to have sprung for record 10 on my CT1 and I'm pretty sure I'm not all that much faster than before (indeed, I'm slower than when I got my last 21 pound bike, but that's the ravages of age, not the difference between the bikes).
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?MP
Aug 15, 2002 2:39 PM
Yes, I ride about 1-1.5 mph faster on my Litespeed on average than I rode on my Lemond Zurich.
re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?mapei boy
Aug 15, 2002 2:43 PM
Yes. According to my computer, I was instantly -
2 mph faster on average.
4 mph faster on flats.
2 mph faster on hills.
7-10 mph faster on descents.
Who knows how much faster around corners? But yes, faster.

I have since improved upon all those numbers except for the descent one.
It's the paint....klay
Aug 15, 2002 2:57 PM
Old - Surly CrossCheck
New - Fondriest Status

Both Chorus 9 with 32spoke Open Pros

I have no quantitative data but the paint looks way faster on the Fondriest. ;-)

re: Any faster with that new "dream" bike?tmotz
Aug 15, 2002 5:12 PM
What good is a fancy bike,if you got 20 pounds extra on your frame.
for sure...faster than Lance...GrassyAss
Aug 15, 2002 6:01 PM
I haven't purchased my dream bike, but it will happen in the near future and I will definitely be faster.. even faster than Lance Armstrong. And then I'll wake up and go for a ride :-)

If your comparing apples & apples ie roadie v roadie, I can't see why your average speed won't be faster on a lighter bike.

The reason behind my logic is that, with a lighter bike you will need to exert less energy than a heavier bike to get it moving. Once moving, it will depend a lot on the aerodynamics of your ride. This is especially the case with climbing. The way I see it, it's like, will you run faster with 1kg on your back or with 3kgs.

Apart from that, you'll probably enjoy riding more, which means you'll get fitter and hence be able to sustain a higher speed for longer.