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specialized m4 festina feedback please(5 posts)

specialized m4 festina feedback pleaseJS Haiku Shop
Oct 1, 2003 5:43 AM
peeps,

i'm thinking about building a tt-only bike for competitive events including tt, du, tri, etc., and for training. would piece it together as stuff is on sale, including aero front/rear disc & associated bits (btw renn discs are made in memphis, and i saw a few renn tri-spoke front wheels last weekend).

the frame i'm looking at is an sworks festina m4 (level top tube), new, from gvh--the one with aero tubing and the rear wheel cutout. i know timetrail.org and elefantino both had or have one, and a few other prior posters, as well. i have searched the board archives and read it all. so far it looks like this is the frame i'm going for, but just wanted to hear pros/cons from you folks.

I am not asking about the relative aero value of the frame; from reading the archives, i see it mentioned that the frame proved a 10% aero advantage over the then-current 5200, which equated to a 1% advantage including rider surface area. that's all good and fine, i just care about it *looking* fast and being a dedicated race bike, responsive, and stiff.

TIA for your input.

-J
re: specialized m4 festina feedback pleasesmcfall
Oct 1, 2003 6:25 AM
i had one of the m4 frames and liked it very much...used it for road racing and TT's it only had one problem, the rear dropout on the derailleur side broke..it looks to be a design issue where the bolt for the derailleur hanger takes out half the web of the dropout making it weak...now i am no light weight at 220lbs and a strong sprinter so that could have contributed to it, but from the reviews on here i wasnt the only one it has happend to and it might not break at all for light weight riders...but the good news is if you buy it new from a dealer and it breaks....you will get a new frame, as in my case specialized sent me a brand new 2003 E5 which i like just as much as my old M4.
was it the festina model?JS Haiku Shop
Oct 1, 2003 6:36 AM
some of the reviews named this specific problem, but mentioned the bolt placement on the rear dropout was changed in the 2001 festina model, resolving the breakage problem.

thanks.
was it the festina model?smcfall
Oct 1, 2003 8:39 AM
mine was a 2000 model, yellow and black....never saw a 2001 model, so hopfully they fixed it that year...otherwise i liked the frame.
Regarding my M4...Elefantino
Oct 1, 2003 7:33 AM
J:
Can't tell you about the aero advantage. But I can tell you that my M4 (it was the red and black level top tube, 62cm c-t, with the cool-looking seatpost fairing) was an absolute sprint launching pad, much more so than my 5200. I found it a great handling bike, too, very easy to point and scoot.
The only downside for me was that it was so stiff that my broken back and neck couldn't handle it, even with Spinergy wheels. So I sold the wheels and the frame and put the components on my first Serotta.
But if you're looking for a rocket, it's the best I've ever been on.

FWIW,
Mike