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  1. #1
    Streetfire HopedaleHills's Avatar
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    BMC First Ride Report

    I have to admit that I was a little nervous purchasing this bike for a few reasons.

    1. I thought it was alot of money for an aluminum frame bike. I could have picked three carbons in the same price range.

    2. The compact crank. Not that I have anything agains't them. I just didn't know if I could handle my hills without a triple.

    3. The "NASCAR Effect" as someone put it.

    So I took it out for short 10 miler last night. My normal route with an extra big hill thrown in. I left the house and went out the backside of the subdivision and took a left on Greene St. It's half mile downhill to a stop sign. This is where I noticed the first big difference. Coasting on the Trek, in the drops with no wind would get me 24.5mph tops. The BMC hit 29.9mph under same conditions. Whether that's the wheelset, aerodynamics, frame, or some of each I don't know but will take an extra 5mph without pedaling anyday.

    Took at right onto Hopedale St which is flat for about the next mile. I couldn't believe how easy this bike got to 20mph and how effortless it was to keep it there. I had the feeling that on a flat route I could pedal at that pace until my butt gave out.

    Ended up down by Hopedale Pond just noodling around the neighborhood streets for a few miles. I am impressed at how smooth this aluminum frame is and it should be even better when the CF seatpost comes in. The difference between this and a Cannondale CAAD9 I tried is incredible. The frame also responds instantly to increased pedal energy.

    Now for the first hill, Adin St. It's about .5 miles long and a good enough grade that I used to use the granny gear on the Trek (30-25). I shifted the BMC to 34-25 and about half way up to 34-27. It was an easier climb than with the Trek. I don't know whether it's the energy transfer or the weight or what. My fears of the compact started to diminish.

    Back around by the subdivision and over to the dreaded Larkin Lane. I normally avoid this hill like the plague. It's about a quarter mile and when at the bottom, looks straight up. The last time I tried it I had to stop halfway to catch a breather. So I started up in the 34-27 gear and spun for while, a short while. Then about halfway I had to stand, but for some reason unknown to me I made it all the way without stopping. I was amazed. I smiled the rest of the way home.

    One of the suprising things was that I actually felt a connection between me and the bike. It was like the bike was working with me rather than agains't me. Which is the feeling I've always had on the Trek. It always seemed like a struggle to keep that bike moving forward easpecially on hills.

    This frame is a delight to ride. I'm in love. The 10-speed cassette is great, I love the close gear ratios and I think the saddle upgrade will work out. It's a Spec Alias 134 and was almost unnoticable.

    So, what about my concerns. As I have said, the aluminum frame is a work of art. No more carbon lust here. The compact is going to be fine on the hills. I think the biggest thing will be getting used to not having the 39T ring, which I used to spend about 90% of my time on. It will take a little getting used to doing more shifting in the front.

    As far as the "NASCAR effect" goes, I think that on occassion I can live up to the bikes reputation. Heck, people that don't know BMC will probably think it's a Xmart bike.

    BTW, I dropped 52 white bikes during the ride. I think one of them had California plates.
    Tim
    Singing Do Wah Ditty, Ditty Dum Ditty Do

  2. #2
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Just Checking the forum while waiting for the wife to pack the final 16 suitcases she is taking on holiday.

    That bike sounds GREAT. Everything you have reported on sounds exactly how I am hoping my new bike will be. I have ridden aluminium for at least 7 years now and find it very responsibve and not harsh and as to that speed increase just coasting-You sure it is not a 40lbs bike with an engine on the back? Good luck on the bike and keep passing the Slow white ones.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  3. #3
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Nice ride report. Glad to see the first ride went well.

    Are you comparing this bike to the Trek 1200C? I have the 1800C and see a big difference between it and the Madone. I was glad to hear you found the double was adequate on the hills. I have a triple on mine but see that it's not an option on some of the new Madones
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  4. #4
    Streetfire HopedaleHills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beverly
    Nice ride report. Glad to see the first ride went well.

    Are you comparing this bike to the Trek 1200C? I have the 1800C and see a big difference between it and the Madone. I was glad to hear you found the double was adequate on the hills. I have a triple on mine but see that it's not an option on some of the new Madones
    Yep, that was a comparison to the 1200c, which someone is coming to look at tonight.
    Tim
    Singing Do Wah Ditty, Ditty Dum Ditty Do

  5. #5
    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    One of the suprising things was that I actually felt a connection between me and the bike. It was like the bike was working with me rather than agains't me. Which is the feeling I've always had on the Trek. It always seemed like a struggle to keep that bike moving forward easpecially on hills.
    That is exactly how I feel between my two roadies - the Windsor Leeds and I are always fighting, the Lemond BA and I are a "team." It is a great feeling.

  6. #6
    Senior Member wrafl's Avatar
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    Nice ride review and report. Makes me desire to get a roadie before the end of the year. More report like this and I'll have a very good idea of all the bikes available. Never heard of BMC but I recon it's a super bike.

  7. #7
    OnTheRoad or AtTheBeach stonecrd's Avatar
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    Sounds like you made a wonderful purchase, both fun to ride and you get poseur points
    The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard and the shallow end is much too large

    2013 Noah RS

  8. #8
    Streetfire HopedaleHills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DnvrFox
    That is exactly how I feel between my two roadies - the Windsor Leeds and I are always fighting, the Lemond BA and I are a "team." It is a great feeling.
    I'm glad to hear that. I was afraid it might all be my imagination.
    Tim
    Singing Do Wah Ditty, Ditty Dum Ditty Do

  9. #9
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    Better install brake 'chuts on that sucker.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HopedaleHills
    BTW, I dropped 52 white bikes during the ride. I think one of them had California plates.


    No green ones?

    Wow it sure sounds like you hit a winner there. Glad you like it like you do. When you step out a bit and spend some extra cash it always makes you wonder if it was smart, and then that good feeling when it works out takes away all the wondering. I hope you get to ride it enough to wear it out.
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

  11. #11
    King of the molehills bcoppola's Avatar
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    Darn you, Hopedale. Reading that just gave me a twinge of new bike lust. Must resist...
    '04 Giant OCR2|'87 Schwinn World Sport F/G conversion (6,129)|'92 Trek 820 MTB|'85 Schwinn Super LeTour
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  12. #12
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcoppola
    Darn you, Hopedale. Reading that just gave me a twinge of new bike lust. Must resist...
    Don't fight it I'm already saving for the next bike.
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  13. #13
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    Great report...you won the bike trifecta: more speed down the hill, more speed up the hill and it fits. Congrats.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  14. #14
    His Brain is Gone! Tom Bombadil's Avatar
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    I used the "NASCAR" reference, but I felt it applied far more to some of the other bikes in the BMC line than to yours.

    It certainly is an interesting bike. Many of us have ridden on lower-end aluminum bikes and found them jarring. That doesn't necessarily mean that a very high quality aluminum bike has the same road feel, just like a cheap steel bike would not yield the same experience as a Rivendell or Waterford steel bike.

  15. #15
    Streetfire HopedaleHills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil
    I used the "NASCAR" reference, but I felt it applied far more to some of the other bikes in the BMC line than to yours.

    It certainly is an interesting bike. Many of us have ridden on lower-end aluminum bikes and found them jarring. That doesn't necessarily mean that a very high quality aluminum bike has the same road feel, just like a cheap steel bike would not yield the same experience as a Rivendell or Waterford steel bike.
    As funny as it sounds, the NASCAR thing was really a concern. When the guy at the LBS said "come in the back room, I have a bike I think you will like", my very first though seeing it was "if I ride that someone will think I am fast". How dumb is that!
    Tim
    Singing Do Wah Ditty, Ditty Dum Ditty Do

  16. #16
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Outstanding!! I suspect some of the difference you're feeling and sensing is reduced weight which is always a big help in accelerating and on hills. Wheels can make a tremendous difference on hills and aerodynamics as well.

    The only reamining test will be on long rides. Will it provide the same comfort and reduced road buzz as a full carbon. Many, many folks use your setup and are extremely pleased so there's no reason to think you'll be just as thrilled after 60-100 miles. Heck, as much speed as you're picking up you will not be out there nearly as long anymore!!!

  17. #17
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HopedaleHills
    When the guy at the LBS said "come in the back room, I have a bike I think you will like", my very first though seeing it was "if I ride that someone will think I am fast". How dumb is that!
    Did he check your ID??

    As I am sure you are aware, BMC has a racing team that competed in the Tour of California as well as others. I saw the pros on the road training at the start of the ToC. BMC has been involved in racing for years and I see BMC bikes on the road frequently. Aluminum is the choice of criterium racers for its stiffness and ability to accelerate and many race Cannondale and Klein aluminum bikes as well. Now you need to get a BMC team kit (they are bright red) to match the bike.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

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