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  1. #1
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    Anyone have a Lynskey R230 or R340?

    I'm 6'3" / 200 lb (and losing) and am considering a Lynskey R230 or R340. Unfortunately I probably won't be able to find one in my area for a test ride, so am looking for input / advice from other owners.

    I have heard that the R230 is fairly stiff for medium sized frames / riders, but is it plenty stiff enough for a clyde on an XL size frame (particularly when climbing out of the saddle and when descending fast)?

    I've heard the R340 frame is very stiff, but I'm wondering if you would consider it too harsh (even for larger size frames / riders). I've only had experience on an AL frame so far, so I'm used to vibration, but was hoping to get a little smoother ride with a Ti frame.

    Above all I want an efficient frame, and secondly comfortable. I ride hard, but am not that fast yet... I fall into the "class B" category in group rides. So I'm also wondering if an R340 frame would be overkill (too much a racing geometry) for me.

    Does anyone have experience with these models? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Well, sort of.....I have a Lynsky level 2 custom from about 5 years ago - the starting point before the custom choices would have been a 200 series frame. I found the frame hanging in a shop as their display frame, and it was about my size, so now it's mine. The frame size is about a medium - it has a level top tube instead of the compact geometry on most Lynskeys. The shop said it's basically a size 54 frame. I'm about 5'11 and bounce between 195 and 225, and found the frame stiffer in the bottom bracket area than my old Kestrel Talon. Not a night and day difference, it just feels a bit better when I stand on a climb or go all out on intervals. My bike also has oversized chain stays and very slim seat stays - the combo seems to work well. All of the tubes are oversized, but not as extreme as a early '90's Canondale, and some subtle shaping went into the tubes too - most are ovalized to provide more stiffness in certain directions.

    As for vibration, the carbon Kestrel was better, but not by much. Titanium seems to be pretty good at smoothing out the vibrations - not as good as the best carbon frames, but better than aluminum. The fork and your tire choice will matter as much as the frame construction, IMHO, when it comes to dampening vibration and smoothing the ride. I used some of the savings from the frame to buy an Edge fork and I actually get less buzz through the aluminum handlebars (same bars I used on the Kestrel) than I did with the plastic bike. I also use 25mm tires - right now Open Corsas at 105 front/110 rear, but I'll be going back to GP4000's next time I buy tires (or maybe try out the new Michelin Comp Pros).

    Here's my Lynskey kitted out for the spring Solvang Double Century:


    JB

    edit: one thing to check is the Lynskey Loft link on the Lynskey website. Also check ebay, craigslist etc - when Lynskey started up, they required the new dealers to buy frames for display purposes. In effect, the money from this became part of the start up capital. They've been in business long enough that the shops are changing out the frames, either because the requirement has expired or they want more current models. That's how I got mine (it was from the Bike Center in Middlebury, VT - they still send me emails about used and demo Lynskeys for sale).
    Last edited by jonathanb715; 07-25-10 at 08:07 PM.
    "Poor Reverend Hamilton! He worked so hard, got a mountain named after him and now all anyone wants to do is complain about his backside!" Overheard while climbing Mt. Hamilton

    Check out my cycling blog.

  3. #3
    Senior Member adrien's Avatar
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    Nope.

    Sweet bikes, though. You're not big enough to worry about the frame being able to handle your weight, so I'd just go with what you like. FWIW, they have a good reputation...why not just call and talk to them?

    Re too harsh....any race bike that advertises itself as such will be a little harsher, especially on neck, lower back, etc. Depends how long and hard you want to ride. Me, I like long rides and don't race, but that's me.

    I came very close to Ti when it came time for a dream bike. You probably know this, but you can get full custom steel for the same price.
    "how do you know you can't swim until you have drowned?"

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonathanb715 View Post
    I used some of the savings from the frame to buy an Edge fork and I actually get less buzz through the aluminum handlebars (same bars I used on the Kestrel) than I did with the plastic bike. I also use 25mm tires - right now Open Corsas at 105 front/110 rear, but I'll be going back to GP4000's next time I buy tires (or maybe try out the new Michelin Comp Pros).
    Thanks. Yeah I already have a new Edge 2.0 fork sitting around (long story) and will likely use my current wheel set, which are Open Pros w/ 25 mm GP4000 tires, and I run them at 105 / 110 lb front/back as you do. (Although the GP4000S with the black chili do sound nice, and they're only available in 23 mm last I checked and would also like to try 23 mm to see if there's a noticeable aero advantage.)

    It looks like your seat stays are straight, and if so that would be one difference between your bike and the R230, which are curved to dampen vibrations. The seat stays are the main design element that I'm concerned about possibly flexing too much when climbing out of the saddle. The R340 has straight seat stays that are also worked into a helix shape, both of which would make that model stiffer in the back end. From a stiffness standpoint the R340 also has a diamond shaped top tube that is stiffer than the ovalized one in the R230, and has a shorter head tube which may also result in a stiffer front end.

    Hopefully someone out there has experience with these models, especially taller riders with the XL frame size. I think the larger frame size has the potential to be much more flexible than say a medium frame size.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrien View Post
    Nope.

    Sweet bikes, though. You're not big enough to worry about the frame being able to handle your weight, so I'd just go with what you like. FWIW, they have a good reputation...why not just call and talk to them?

    Re too harsh....any race bike that advertises itself as such will be a little harsher, especially on neck, lower back, etc. Depends how long and hard you want to ride. Me, I like long rides and don't race, but that's me.

    I came very close to Ti when it came time for a dream bike. You probably know this, but you can get full custom steel for the same price.

    Thanks for your input. I ride hard and often race myself (kind of time trial). However, another factor is the longevity of the bike vs. my age (39). If I end up keeping this bike for 10-20 years or more it might be better to get something smoother and less race oriented, which is why I'm actually leaning towards the R230... just want to make sure that it's not going to be too flexy in the XL size.

    As for asking Lynskey, I've heard the customer service is top notch and have already contacted them, but I always take the "company line" with a grain of salt... actual owners' opinions are much more valuable.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jayp410 View Post
    It looks like your seat stays are straight, and if so that would be one difference between your bike and the R230, which are curved to dampen vibrations. The seat stays are the main design element that I'm concerned about possibly flexing too much when climbing out of the saddle. .
    Yup - the frame is from the early days when Lynskey first opened up shop again, so before they started experimenting with curved seat stays AFAIK. The helix twisted tubesets are really recent, too. I think the level top tube also has something to do with it - the seat stays are longer and at a different, more vertical angle on my bike than they would be on a compact frame. However, the ingredients for a stiff, stable bottom bracket seem to be there in all the Lynskeys. Combine that with oversized chainstays and I think most riders will be satisfied. Shame you can't get one out for a test ride!

    JB
    "Poor Reverend Hamilton! He worked so hard, got a mountain named after him and now all anyone wants to do is complain about his backside!" Overheard while climbing Mt. Hamilton

    Check out my cycling blog.

  7. #7
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    I weigh 260 and ride an R230 in size L. No discernible lateral flex in the bottom bracket even while out of the saddle. The frame does have some vertical compliance making it comfortable (not soft) without much compromise in acceleration or climbing effort. It performs almost as well as my Look 585 but is less jarring over large road hazards like expansion joints, cobblestones and small pot holes. I do find the frame transmits a small amount of road buzz that the Look totally masks.

    Call the people at Lynskey. I explained I wanted a ride similar to my Look, but more comfortable for long distance riding and commuting. They recommended the R230 and they were correct.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pennstater View Post
    I weigh 260 and ride an R230 in size L. No discernible lateral flex in the bottom bracket even while out of the saddle. The frame does have some vertical compliance making it comfortable (not soft) without much compromise in acceleration or climbing effort. It performs almost as well as my Look 585 but is less jarring over large road hazards like expansion joints, cobblestones and small pot holes. I do find the frame transmits a small amount of road buzz that the Look totally masks.

    Call the people at Lynskey. I explained I wanted a ride similar to my Look, but more comfortable for long distance riding and commuting. They recommended the R230 and they were correct.
    Thanks. If it doesn't flex too much for you, it should be fine for me. They have a nice satisfaction policy to allow exchanges if the model or size is wrong, which is comforting. Just placed an order for the R230. I'm very much looking forward to building and riding it!

  9. #9
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    I have fit the R230 with PR3s size 23, GP4000 size 25 and Gatorskins size 28. I ride the 28s in low light and wet conditions. The Gatorskins make the bike feel sluggish but more stable over road hazards. I find the ride on 23s yields slightly more road buzz with much improved acceleration. The 25s seem like a good combination of comfort and performance with road buzz evident only on the roughest chip seal surfaces. Be advised that the clearance for 28s on my Alpha Q fork is tight but adequate at the rear brake bridge. 28s may or may not fit other forks.

    These tires are mounted on separate wheelsets. The 28s on Ksyrium Elites. The 23s on Dura Ace scandium wheels. The 25s on Ksyrium ES. I use the wheelset/tire combo that suits my mood and road conditions.

    Liked the R230 so much bought one for my wife to replace her damaged Specialized Roubaix Elite. She loves it.

    I did put gel under our handlebar tape. I would highly recommend it.

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