Been a while...
I've been riding steel (I have a Kona Kapu which is my main ride) for a couple of years, and last year got on a wait list for a build from Ira Ryan, who specializes in lugged steel and builds some wonderful bicycles.
Well, build time is coming. I've done the fit session, chosen colors and design (dark grey with some metallic, on Ira's suggestion brushed stainless lugs) and have settled on a number of the components: deep Vs with Chris King hubs, FSA wing bars, and SRAM Force and / or Red.
I don't especially care much about weight, and would err on the side of durability given the choice, but this is a dream bike for me, and I want what's best for me.
I ride about 2,500 miles a year, pretty much all year round. A short ride is 30, long is 120 miles. I run 220-240 depending on season, and am comfortable at that weight given my fitness level (I ran 3 miles on the treadmill yesterday in 27 minutes, with no problems at all). I do tend to stand to climb, and like to spint out of the saddle every so often. But mostly I like to lock in and ride for hours at about 15 mph. I don't race, but do sometimes join group and charity rides, usually holding pace with the second or third groups.
Any Clydes have experience with SRAM Force Vs. Red? Are the Red brifters / rear derailleur really any better for my application? Does durability suffer?