As I mentioned in an earlier post, I was looking for a bike to add to the stable and it was going to be Ti, but the cost turned me away as it was just a bit out of budget right now, so I tripped over the Motobecane Grand Record at bikesdirect.com. They were closing out the 2010's and I got this one for $599 including tax and shipping.
I was looking for a non CF bike to help satisfy the N+1 equation and this fits the bill nicely. I ordered it on a Saturday night (6/19) and it arrived on my door step in So Cal on Thursday (6/24). It was well packaged and in perfect condition. It took about 45 minutes to assemble and fine tune. I sprayed it down with Simple Green and then rinsed it to get rid of that shipping grease and then re-lubed everything The wheels are XRP COMP Vuelta and were true right out of the box. The components are low end Sora and Tiagra and I expect to replace them with some Ultegra and 105 components I have from other builds, but they were perfectly adjusted out of the box as well. The paint is flawless and the CF fork is beautiful.
I took the first ride, 8 miles, with it exactly as it came. The saddle sucks...no other way to put it, and I needed to change the stem because the reach was way out there. So I dumped the saddle and went with a Specialized Toupe I have here and while I was at it I stuck in a CF seat post that has a better adjustment head on it. Losing the seat and aluminum seat post trimmed a few oz off the bike as well. Now with the new saddle and shorter stem I went out Friday afternoon and did 25 miles on it...and I'm really impressed. Now I know I won't be comparing apples to apples here but I ride a Madone with SRAM Force components and shifters and a SRAM Red crank, Easton EA 90 Aero wheels riding on Michelin Lithion tires. It also has Campy mirage brakes on it. The ride of the Motobecane is only slightly more harsh than my Madone. It handles very nice and the Tektra brakes to a reasonable job. I'm also somewhat surprised at the components...they work great and shift nice. I'm not crazy about the Sora shifters, but they will do until I swap them out with the 105's I have here as well. I'm not used to riding a triple again and this is kind of a pain...much more shifting than I remember from my first bike, but again, I have a Ultegra compact 50/34 crank sitting here as well. The wheels are heavy and don't roll as nice as the Eastons, but that's to be expected since the Eastons cost more than the entire Motobecane did. All in all, I don't think you could get more bang for your buck with a new bike. While I have purchased 5 bikes from my LBS over the last several years and support them in every way I can,they couldn't come close to this bike for less than $1,000. I'm at the point that I know what I want and know what is what. So buying online seemed like the thing to do this time...and come Christmas I'll be looking at that Ti frame by Motobecane.
I'm going to put 40-50 miles on it this morning and then this afternoon I'll swap out the crank and maybe the shifters. My first bike was sold to me by my LBS and it was NOT properly sized, so I ended up on a 56 that was too big for me and sold it when I bought my Madone. So I have only had one road bike at a time before now and the N+1 is presenting a different dilemma...how do you choose which bike to ride!?