It's a little drizzly here this morning so I thought I'd share my first ride on the rent-a-Roubaix while we wait for the sun to come out.
We brought home two Roubaix Comps on loan yesterday. Mine is a 56cm double [edit: compact double], his is a 58cm triple. The owner spent a lot of time making adjustments and changes to the saddle and stem both on and off the trainer. I think I'm going to need a triple after all, but this will tell me for sure. There's no way around the hilly neighborhoods where we live, and after a very long ride I might need a triple to help me back up the hill. [Edit: This was only a preliminary adjustment to see if the frame size is correct for us. A every thorough fitting will be done when we purchase the bike.]
Anyway, about my first ride. First of all, compared with the Cypress, it is easier to swing my 50+ leg over the saddle at its proper height on this bike. Overall, the fit feels better. Since the shift levers are completely different, my first goal was to memorize which lever to use for what purpose and I needed to learn it fast since our area is hilly. After a few mile ride, I was able to remember without too much thinking.
We climbed a tough hill that we tried early last year when we first got back into this; it's a toughie (like the big hill at the end of the memorial ride, but MUCH shorter). I would have appreciated an extra gear or two of a triple, but I made it up. Perhaps with time and more strength, I may not need a triple, but in the meantime it will help me tackle unfamiliar hills we might encounter on a typical group ride.
The reach felt pretty good and I need to let myself relax a little. If I could bring the bars back about 1-1/4", I think it would feel just right. QUESTION #1: Is that difference small enough to fix with just stem adjustments alone? If the rest of the bike fit is just right, that's the only change I'd need to make. QUESTION #2: Does the carbon headset limit the number or type of adjustments that can be made to perfect the reach?
If this is the right size bike for me, then I just need to decide on which Roubaix (or Ruby, if it turns out to be the better fit). If you can convince me that $900 is worth spending to upgrade from the Comp, I might go for it. Or I could put that money toward the fitting, new bike computer, and other stuff I'll need (er, want). I have to be convinced that it is money well-spent and why the upgrades are significant.
I was surprised that the only significant discomfort I felt was in my thumb joint (severed tendon injury about a year ago). My neck felt a little tired after a while, and I could "feel" my wrist now and then, but I noticed my thumb the most. However, I'm happy to report that I feel NO discomfort today, as I expected to. I am not concerned about the thumb joint as I am about the wrist (the pain is probably just due to scar tissue build-up in the joint).
It's still drizzling ......