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  1. #1
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    2010 Jamis Aurora Elite

    I just purchased the subject bicycle and LOVE it. I bought it because I am trying the car-free lifestyle for a while and it seemed like a great purchase, even beside the LHT. However, I do have a few questions:

    It came with decent components, Deore Shifters, Tiagra Derailleurs, Mavic A119 wheels with Randeurr Pro tires (700x32) and ****ty factory fenders. I haven't had any trouble with it whatsoever, but then again I've only put 100ish miles on it.

    My question is (this is going to be my ultimate/project bike): would it make any sense to upgrade the wheels to a higher-end Mavic, or higher-end brand for that matter? Suggestions?

    The components on the bike now seem fine, but I was curious if it would be at all better to upgrade to SRAM Red on ALL components. Or if not SRAM Red, can I mix/match the Deore, Tiagra and Dura-Ace pieces? Maybe change out the seatpost with a Titanium seatpost?

    What kind of pedals should I use and what kind of shoes are best if I decide not to use my SPDs?

    Would bamboo fenders fit this bike? I really think they would go well with the color scheme.

    I also bought a pack of Ortlieb Classic Rollers Panniers and those will probably be the last Panniers I buy for a long time.

    Any other suggestions to help make this bike any better?

    Money won't be an issue as I'm selling my 2010 Trek Madone 6.9 for relatively cheap, so I'll have some money to spend and possibly enough to buy a LHT or Lynksey tourer/commuter/cx.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    Kruiser

  2. #2
    Larger Chainring Oregon Southpaw's Avatar
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    You better hope this thread gets ignored by the masses.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dovetube View Post
    At times my crotch has thought the title to this thread.

  3. #3
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    It won't.

  4. #4
    I'm Carbon Curious 531phile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KruiserIV View Post
    I just purchased the subject bicycle and LOVE it. I bought it because I am trying the car-free lifestyle for a while and it seemed like a great purchase, even beside the LHT. However, I do have a few questions:

    It came with decent components, Deore Shifters, Tiagra Derailleurs, Mavic A119 wheels with Randeurr Pro tires (700x32) and ****ty factory fenders. I haven't had any trouble with it whatsoever, but then again I've only put 100ish miles on it.

    My question is (this is going to be my ultimate/project bike): would it make any sense to upgrade the wheels to a higher-end Mavic, or higher-end brand for that matter? Suggestions?

    The components on the bike now seem fine, but I was curious if it would be at all better to upgrade to SRAM Red on ALL components. Or if not SRAM Red, can I mix/match the Deore, Tiagra and Dura-Ace pieces? Maybe change out the seatpost with a Titanium seatpost?

    What kind of pedals should I use and what kind of shoes are best if I decide not to use my SPDs?

    Would bamboo fenders fit this bike? I really think they would go well with the color scheme.

    I also bought a pack of Ortlieb Classic Rollers Panniers and those will probably be the last Panniers I buy for a long time.

    Any other suggestions to help make this bike any better?

    Money won't be an issue as I'm selling my 2010 Trek Madone 6.9 for relatively cheap, so I'll have some money to spend and possibly enough to buy a LHT or Lynksey tourer/commuter/cx.

    Thanks in advance for any help.

    Kruiser


    Why not just get rid of the Jamis and get the Lynksey for that Ultimate Build? Sram Red? Really? That's like buying a stock Toyata and then upgrading it with a F1 engine.
    Last edited by 531phile; 10-07-10 at 01:21 AM.

    Quote Originally Posted by avner View Post
    I loled. Twice. Then I cried. Then I rubbed one out and cried again, but thanks for sharing.

  5. #5
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    Is there a downside to having full Dura Ace / Sram Red on a commuter? And I'd like to have two bikes, hence selling the one to purchase a tourer or possibly CX.

    I've even considered swapping out the stock Aurora components with my Madon's Dura Ace and converting my Trek 6500 into a project build.

  6. #6
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    You're crazy. The Aurora is a great bike for its price point, but don't make it what it's not. The difference between good and great components really only comes out in situations where seconds count. Races. The Aurora isn't a racing bike, so there's no real benefit to upgrading. If there's something substantial that you don't like - would like barcons instead of brifters, the STI cable line is in the way (which it is), something like that - it might be worth replacing. But just upgrading to higher end equipment? This isn't the kind of bike where you'll get much value for the upgrade.

    Quote Originally Posted by KruiserIV View Post
    Is there a downside to having full Dura Ace / Sram Red on a commuter? And I'd like to have two bikes, hence selling the one to purchase a tourer or possibly CX.
    You've dropped a lot of money for no real benefit? You're now parking $3000 outside the grocery store instead of $1300?

    I've even considered swapping out the stock Aurora components with my Madon's Dura Ace and converting my Trek 6500 into a project build.
    It's entirely possible that you could find someone on CL who would pay almost as much for a Madone with downgraded parts as for a Dura Ace one, but it would probably take longer to sell. This would certainly be a much lower cost way to upgrade components on the Aurora, since you're not going to get anything close to full component value on the used market.

  7. #7
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    I also have a 2010 Jamis Aurora Elite, and I love it too. I bought it mostly to use as a commuter to get to and from work once my other bike (Jamis Citizen 1) broke (rear wheel, and it was going to cost about $200 to get a replacement wheel strong enough for my commute). The Aurora Elite has a Deore XT deraileur, which is probably of similar quality to Ultegra- it's just that Deore XT is made primarily for mountain bikes (it's long cage) versus road bikes (Ultegra). The fenders aren't the best, but to be honest- they've kept the water off of me when I've ridden it in the rain- and I commute on my bike every day, rain or shine.

    To my mind, the biggest component weaknesses on the Jamis Aurora Elite are the cranks (FSA gossamer) and the shifters (Tiagra). If I was going to do anything else, I'd probably replace the cassette (11-34T) to a 12-25, , or maybe a 12-27, because I don't need that high range anymore. (And personally, I wouldn't have bough the 2011 Jamis Aurora Elite with SRAM Apex)

    That said, I wouldn't spend a dime upgrading this bike (except maybe for a new saddle, or a seat post with some set back).

    Upgrading it to SRAM Red doesn't make a lot of sense to me. SRAM Red is a race groupset- and this is a touring bike. Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think you're going to get a SRAM Red derailleur that'll work with a 32T rear cog. If you want to get a race bike with a racing groupset, then by all means do it- I'm certainly planning on it. This bike has helped me fall in love with cycling, and I want to do more of it- but the bike is really heavy. The amount of money you'd invest on SRAM Red to upgrade the components would almost pay for a new road bike with Shimano 105 or SRAM Rival.

  8. #8
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    Ride it until something breaks, and then fix or replace that.

    I looked carefully at the 2010 Aurora Elite a year ago when I was shopping for a commuter. It's a really nice bike. It's a well-balanced "package;" nothing that really needs to be changed or fixed.

    I'd call it "done" and save all the extra loot for a 2nd -- different -- bike.

  9. #9
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    Thanks very much guys. All great feedback.

  10. #10
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    And bhdavis1978, what would you recommend as far as crankset, shifters and cassette?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by KruiserIV View Post
    And bhdavis1978, what would you recommend as far as crankset, shifters and cassette?
    Just to clarify -- you said in your post that the bike had Deore shifters (?). Not sure what you meant by that.

    The 2010 Aurora Elite specs I recall (and that I see here) say it has Shimano Tiagra 9-speed STI shifters, mated to a 9-speed drivetrain (it has a Deore rear derailleur).

    http://www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebik...lite_spec.html

    If this is your bike, you need to understand that your are headed down an expensive road if you start to mix upgraded shift levers -- all of the ones you've mentioned are 10-speeds -- with a 9-speed drivetrain. You'll have to change the shift levers, cassette, and possibly tweak the derailleurs as well, or install a device called a shiftmate that allows you to mix stuff. Uggh.

    I think you have a serious case of new-bike-upgrade-itis. I've had it several times as well.

    Best cure is to go for a bike ride and ask yourself, seriously, is there anything wrong.

    IMHO there is nothing wrong with Tiagra 9-speed shifters on a touring bike. If you want to "upgrade" them (you can save a few ounces of weight), find some Shimano 9-speed 105 or Ultegra STI shifters on eBay -- but, as a warning, they tend to be expensive if they are in excellent condition. I bought some NOS Shimano 105 9-speed shifters a year ago and they were almost as pricey as new as there appear to be lots of people with 9-speed set-ups who want to find 9-speed STI's.
    Last edited by BengeBoy; 10-07-10 at 02:01 PM.

  12. #12
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    You don't need to upgrade anything unless you have an intended purpose in mind. If things break then you should replace them. The Aurora Elite is a very nice bike at a very nice price. It is is more of a tourer so I don't see why you would look to get a LHT.

    Don't get me wrong, its your money, so spend it as you please. If you plan to increase the utility you may want to look into fenders that offer you more coverage than what the picture shows. Otherwise all I can think of would be lights, lock, hi-viz vest, home pump, helmet, and any other amenities you can think of. For pedals I have some Wellgo's on my bike. The MKS tourers or BMX platform type are also nice. I wear regular basketball sneakers and have Powergrips on both my bikes.
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  13. #13
    Born Again Pagan irclean's Avatar
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    I agree with others that the Aurora Elite is great just the way it is. Before buying my last bike I seriously considered this one, but ended up going in a different direction altogether. The only upgrades I would make would be full-coverage fenders with mudflaps (PB Cascadias come to mind) and maybe a tighter 11-28 Deore cassette since I wouldn't be doing any mountains or loaded touring. I would also consider a nice Brooks saddle and matching bar tape, but that would be mostly for aesthetic purposes.
    Gettin' my Fred on.

  14. #14
    Senior Member heywood's Avatar
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    nearly bought that bike too, finally got the Trek 520 but the Jamis was defiantly on my short list take it on a tour or two like to know how it handles..

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by irclean View Post
    I agree with others that the Aurora Elite is great just the way it is. Before buying my last bike I seriously considered this one, but ended up going in a different direction altogether. The only upgrades I would make would be full-coverage fenders with mudflaps (PB Cascadias come to mind) and maybe a tighter 11-28 Deore cassette since I wouldn't be doing any mountains or loaded touring. I would also consider a nice Brooks saddle and matching bar tape, but that would be mostly for aesthetic purposes.
    Brooks saddle with matching bartape is first thing on my list. Along with the Aztec 2.0 (I forget the entire name), which is extra padding under the bartape. I lowered the stem on the steering tube this evening and I hate the way the excess steerer pokes out, so I may buy a smaller steerer tube as well. Other than that, I agree with BengeBoy -- I got the itis I'm going to ride it for a few more weeks before making any changes besides the saddle/bartape. Thanks again guys.

  16. #16
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    If it ain't broke...

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by KruiserIV View Post
    Brooks saddle with matching bartape is first thing on my list. Along with the Aztec 2.0 (I forget the entire name), which is extra padding under the bartape. I lowered the stem on the steering tube this evening and I hate the way the excess steerer pokes out, so I may buy a smaller steerer tube as well. Other than that, I agree with BengeBoy -- I got the itis I'm going to ride it for a few more weeks before making any changes besides the saddle/bartape. Thanks again guys.
    You don't need a new steering tube (fork). It can be cut down to the length you want by your lbs. If this is a new bike the shop you bought it from might cut it for free.
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  18. #18
    Bike ≠ Car ≠ Ped. BarracksSi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhdavis1978 View Post
    Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't think you're going to get a SRAM Red derailleur that'll work with a 32T rear cog.
    You could run Red shifters with an Apex or Rival medium-cage RD.

    I'd get Red for my road bike, but mainly for the zero loss mechanism on both shifters, not the weight savings.

    Quote Originally Posted by Boyd Reynolds View Post
    You don't need a new steering tube (fork). It can be cut down to the length you want by your lbs. If this is a new bike the shop you bought it from might cut it for free.
    If this is like the Aurora Elite I've seen at my LBS, it has a special Jamis sleeve-stem combo on the steerer tube that makes it easy to change the stem height without having to restack spacers and adjust the pressure on the headset. That silver tube you see in Jamis's pic is actually the sleeve, which has a ridge going down the front; that ridge fits into a slot in the stem to keep it aligned. The sleeve serves the role of spacers and carries the pressure from the top cap to keep the headset in place.

    One other weird thing about the bike at my LBS is that the RD is reverse-pull, meaning that tapping the small shift lever makes it go to a larger cog.

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