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Any Thoughts on REI Novara Strada/REI Novaras Generally(6 posts)

Any Thoughts on REI Novara Strada/REI Novaras GenerallyRuss1
Jun 18, 2003 8:57 PM
Hi All,
I test rode a Strada (al frame, all 105 components) this w/end and it felt really good. Any experiences/thoughts on this bike, Novara road bikes generally? The carbon fork did a lot of dampening, and I like the REI warranty deal. Also, it seems a lot of bikes in this price range ($1100) mix components, 105 w/ cheaper stuff. The Strada is all 105. Thoughts?
Also, it seems I can fit pretty well on a 55 or a 56. All other things being equal (which they rarely are, though we all use that phrase with abandon) is there a reason to choose bigger or smaller if both seem to work?
Thanks in advance for all responses.
-Russ
I own two NovarasSuddha
Jun 19, 2003 6:41 AM
I own Novara's top of the line hardtail MTB from last year and I bought a Big Buzz urban assault bike this year. I love them both. Just so you don't think I am an REI salesman, I also have a LeMond Chambery road bike.

I am very impressed with the Novara offerings. They have not gotten a lot of respect, but the great thing about Novaras is that they spec them with really good quality components. They don't skimp on the parts you don't "see", like bottom brackets, etc. It's usually all Ritchey, WTB, FSA stuff with Shimano and SRAM mid- to upper level gruppos. The frames are made in the same factory in Taiwan that a lot of the Marin bikes are (and probably others). Light, good geometry and nice paint.

All this, combined with good prices and great customer service, makes REI definitely a place to look. I have been very happy with my Novara MTB - it's reasonably light and came with a Manitou Black fork, Avid mech disc brakes, XT derailleur, Ritchey cockpit, etc. etc. It's a better bike than the Stumpjumper M4 I used to ride.

If the Strada fits, go for it. I myself like their Trionfo Ultegra Al/Carbon bike. But that one's more like $1500.

Good luck!
I'll bet the frames are made by Trek orshamelessgearwhore
Jun 19, 2003 8:13 AM
Giant or some other big production shop. Anyone know?
could be...Suddha
Jun 19, 2003 8:58 AM
I know that REI, in some locations, sells Marin, K2 and Cannondale (or at least they used to) as well as Novara. I wouldn't be surprised if they collaborate on frame building. I know the Novara bikes are designed from the ground up by a design team at REI in Seattle.
re: Any Thoughts on REI Novara Strada/REI Novaras Generallypaulg
Jun 19, 2003 10:34 AM
Russ,

Last year I bought the Novara Trionfo at REI. Was equipped with full Ultegra. Got 20% off (on sale) and their lifetime guarantee. Where else can you buy aluminum/carbon frame and get that type of warrantee?

The bike is real sweet,real fast, and real damp on bumpy surfaces - better than my old DB steel frame. It will match any similar bike out there (Cannondale; Specialized) stride for stride.

I have always wanted to post a review of it on this site to give it some exposure, but so far there has been no opportunity yet.

Service at REI has been fantastic too. They have were able to make all the small adjustments for me no charge.

I will be riding it in the PMC this year.

Good luck with your purchase!

Paul.
REI Novara Sizing... Read it CarefullyFez
Jun 19, 2003 11:06 AM
Read the sizing charts on these bikes. REI nominal sizes are center to center. They also have high seat collars (probably doesn't matter unless you want to use a bent Thomson setback seatpost). Pay attention to standover (since the nominal size is c-c). Also look at top tube length and seat angles.

FYI, My REI nominal size is at least 2cm smaller than what I would ride on other major brands. I also find them to have less standover clearance, but shorter effective top tubes than other bikes. YMMV.

If you can get it to fit you well, they are nice bikes and REI offers good service and good value.