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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-01-07, 02:08 PM   #1
RVH
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Bike recommendation please - Lemond Tourmalet or Lemond Arrivee

My 12 yr old Lemond Tourmalet required so much work that it was better to consider getting a new bike. At 6'3" and 245 (down from 265!) I like the longer top tube of the Lemond and would like to stay with them. My LBS has two options for me, a new Tourmalet (aluminum frame, 105 components) for $1050 and a four year old Lemond Arrivee (Ti frame, Ultegra components) for $1600 (retailed at $2700, it was one of those, "oh, it was in the back and we just found it deals).

Given that I only ride recreationally now, 15 - 30 mi at a time, and only 1000 - 1500 miles a year, should I spend the extra $550 and spring for the Ti/Ultegra? Are the components that much better? Will I notice a difference in how they shift? Will they last longer? Will the Ti ride be that much better than the Aluminum?

Oh, I have a pretty good set of wheels to put on from my old bike, Easton Circuit Comps.

I guess I am looking for someone to tell me that a) I'm crazy to spend the extra $550; or b) You will REALLY enjoy the Ti frame vs the aluminum and the components, etc.

Any help will be appreciated.

Bob
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Old 08-01-07, 02:14 PM   #2
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Guilt free zone here:

Buy what you will ride and enjoy! You're spending money on your life and health!

Ti is sweet, and a more compliant ride than Aluminum, with a far longer lifespan relative to fatigue (On the same order as steel!).
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Old 08-01-07, 02:30 PM   #3
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You'd be crazy not to, IMHO...
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Old 08-01-07, 07:58 PM   #4
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A new 105 grouppo is probably better in most regards than a 4 year old Ultegra grouppo. Ride them both and see what you think re:Ti vs aluminum. See how you think they compare.
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Old 08-01-07, 08:34 PM   #5
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I vote Ti
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Old 08-02-07, 12:52 AM   #6
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That Arivee is a great deal! I'm 6'3"! How come I didn't find that deal!?

Well, the first thing to do is take the Arivee out for a long spin. The thing you want to check on a Ti bike is whether or not that frame is going to flex laterally under your load. Do some climbs and some sprints in different gears. If the frame flexes too much, you should consider passing on it. If you're happy with it you should buy it immediately.

I've ridden aluminum for a long time, it handles heavier riders better, but I've never been a big fan of how it rides on the road. You may be ok if you're doing 15 mi rides, but at 30 mi I definitely start to suffer from the road chatter.

I'd check out the 07 Sarthe at the same pricepoint. That's my favorite Lemond because it has a beautiful steel frame. I think that may be the way to go if the Arivee doesn't work out.
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Old 08-02-07, 06:55 AM   #7
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Thanks, I'm off for a test ride this morning

I'll report the findings...

Thanks,

Bob
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Old 08-02-07, 07:53 AM   #8
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I would not pass up the Arrivee! I looked for a last years model and saved $800 off retail just over a month ago. The difference in components makes the ride just that, a ride. With lesser components, I end up thinking about the chain noise, shifting early to avoid chain suck, stopping to mess with the chain because of chain suck and constantly messing with the derailer adjustments to get it to shift the way I wanted.

If it is new and that old, chances are they would really like to get it off the floor. Offer them a couple hundred less than what they quoted you. It is costing them money to sit, and will deal, unlike with the brand new stuff.


EDIT:
Ditto on the Sarthe. I test rode one and loved it. It was too big for me and I wasn't ready to order one. Then I found my Buenos Aires, it was similar in ride to the Sarthe, but a little cheaper, and sitting right there!
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Old 08-02-07, 03:03 PM   #9
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Then I found my Buenos Aires, it was similar in ride to the Sarthe, but a little cheaper, and sitting right there!
Same here! Have we talked about this before? It would have been nice to have the durability of the Sarthe, but the '06 BA handles my weight better and it was $250 cheaper.
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Old 08-02-07, 03:46 PM   #10
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I think everyone should buy and ride the best bike they can afford. Ride both and buy the one you like the best.
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