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Litespeed or Merlin?(6 posts)

Litespeed or Merlin?GEORGIADOG
May 8, 2003 5:18 AM
I know these posts tend to get old and all the responses dont really help until you actually swing your leg over each steed and see for yourself because everyone is different right.To be honest I was all set out to get a Litespeed until I noticed that Lotto or no other pro team was riding them this year. I feel kinda loyal to Litespeed though seeing how they are assembled in my backyard. I guess I should ask is there anything wrong with them? Thanks for any responses.
re: Litespeed or Merlin?jtolleson
May 8, 2003 5:32 AM
Don't assume that a bike's quality is indicated by whether a pro team is riding them. That's as much about sponsorship and marketing deals as it is the preference of the peloton.

Litespeed makes a high quality respected bike. As with any bike debate, you'll hear folks trash one to talk up another, but no one can credibly argue that Litespeed isn't a fine option. They can be overpriced (IMO) at full retail but are frequently offered at very competitive pricing.
re: Litespeed or Merlin?ClydeTri
May 8, 2003 5:33 AM
First of all, Merlin is also built in Ooltewah Tn in the same building complex as the Litespeeds and Quinta Roo ti bikes are..their aluminum are built in Taiwan. With respect to pro teams..there is a Div II team whose name escapes me at the moment who is riding them...
re: Litespeed or Merlin?TrekFurthur
May 8, 2003 6:08 AM
The team on Merlins that you're thinking of is in Virginia--I think it's Virginia-something. Also, the reason Lotto is not riding Litespeeds this year is because Daddy Merckx was a big player in creating the uber-Belgian squad, which of course had to ride a Belgian bike--at the beginning of the season, it looked like he should have backed Quickstep, but Peter Van Petegem saved him that trouble.

As for which you should choose, a little more info would be necessary (I won't ask for all the physical details most folks seem so enamored of); which models are you considering. Both lines are assembled in Ooltewah, as the poster above mentioned, but there are some differences in the lines. Merlin does have a several compact frame models and utilizes some tube-shaping, but generally the tubing is still round--it's the more traditional line; Litespeed, on the other hand, goes for more radical tubing manipulation and does more work with 6/4 Ti (I would expect them to find a source of butted-tubing to stay on the cutting edge with Moots).

If you want a more traditionally-minded frame, then go with the Merlin, but if you want the newest of the new Ti designs, go with the Litespeed. On a personal note, my Merlin Agilis is a great bike--comfortable and plenty of racing ability--but if I had to do it over again, I'd go with traditional geometry over compact. My physical dimensions don't need compact, and I prefer the aesthetics of the trad. design.
Litespeed, Lotto, Etc.Fez
May 8, 2003 7:32 AM
For years, Litespeed wasn't officially ridden by an elite Pro Squad.

It is worth noting that many riders chose to ride them anyway and did so at their own expense, then had to have them repainted or rebadged as the official sponsor bike.

Litespeed was the official Team Lotto bike for 2002. That was the first time I saw them as a sponsor on an elite road squad. The reason they aren't for 2003 is the merger of the Lotto and Domo teams and do you really think Axel Merckx would be riding a bike other than a Merckx?

Bottom line: Litespeeds have always been nice, whether or not they have been officially sponsoring a team or not.

What's important to you? If you want a bike that a pro team rides, then choose accordingly.
re: Litespeed or Merlin?ryder1
May 8, 2003 8:46 AM
I've only ridden a Litespeed briefly. I love my Merlin Agilis though. Quick, stiff, yet compliant. If Litespeed is in your backyard and then so is Merlin - same facility but seperate work areas and crews. The sizes in the Merlin fit me better than LS.