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Old 09-05-12, 11:21 AM   #1
theoddone
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Dilemma on upgrading from first bike

Here is my situation. I got back into cycling after 20 years gap. At first I wasn't sure what to buy, went to the LBS specializing in TREK bikes, primarily to buy a new bike for my son, and thought I would also get one to get back into riding. They suggested a flat handlebar hybrid for me, 7.2 FX, and a TREK 3500 in "13 frame for him. Mine is a "22 frame, I am about 5'10 with 158 lbs. Both bikes fit and we bought both, happy with the service from shop and happy with bikes.

So far so good. Started going out for rides on trails on weekends as well as daily commute to work, 5 miles one way mostly using trails. Started group riding with a couple of buddies with hybrids for fun and soon realized I am outpacing them easily. Did a couple of 50 mile rides and by now constantly wishing I got myself a road bike. Roadies are always going past me and I am lusting after these lighter and meaner machines. Also at end of 50 miles I am getting bonked out, not to mention taking way longer than if I had a road bike.

I want to continue riding 60 miles plus a week when possible and do a century a year.

It's only two months though and I was thinking wait one year and get into road bike next summer.

Another thought is why wait, get the 2012 that are going on sale. I feel guilty about the $550 I spent on hybrid though if I do that. Am I simply wasting money? I think may be ride another year on this to get maximum value out of it. But then I will not be enjoying the 50 mile rides coming up, especially with the rolling hills on back roads.

Anyhow, I did basic research and decided I need endurance type of frame, aluminum with CF to keep cost down, and Shimano 105 components. Went and did test ride on a Giant Defy 1 which matched this spec, like the bike a lot, its selling for $1240 at LBS, 10% off MSRP. Torn about whether to spent this much on another bike barley 3 months of buying a bike. I also spent quit a bit on accessories, now I am well equipped. The other bike I wanted to ride is a Cannondale Synapse 5 with 105, unfortunately the 2012 are sold out at shops near to me, so can't get them anymore. Specialized does not have a Secteur in comparable range with 105 components. I am not sure any other models are out there. Also saw a Fuji Gran Fondo all carbon with 105 for $1600, not sure about Fuji brand though.

The Giant Defy 1 looks solid value and is a good fit. I am torn whether to go for it, or wait until Spring / Summer to get my thoughts clear and possibly see even more bikes in that time.
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Old 09-05-12, 12:11 PM   #2
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Get what you want now and ride now. That wishing for something better is not going to get you anywhere. You can always sell the hybrid.
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Old 09-05-12, 12:51 PM   #3
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You've got some major jonesing for a new bike going on there with all the research and everything. Have you done a test ride of one of these bikes? Do it now. If you fall in love, then you probably need the new bike and will get value out of it. If you don't fall in love, consider waiting.

The hybrid? Get some pannier racks, grocery panniers, fenders and lights. Make that your urban bike/ beater bike. Start looking at commuting to your job and using your bike for errands and rides with your son.
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Old 09-05-12, 03:08 PM   #4
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The hybrids would bring about $300-350 in my area, Southern CA.

If you are doing 50 miles rides it's safe to say you are serious. I like the Artkansas's idea of commuter-izing the Trek. I use my hybrid a lot.

Get the best bike you can afford. A quality bike is something that will last for decades. My Univega will be 28 this fall. It's cost me $24 per year.
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Old 09-05-12, 04:54 PM   #5
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There is a law or formula in Cycling. N+1. N equals the number of bikes you have and +1 equals the number of bikes you need. The formula "never" changes. Fuji is a pretty good bike. If you get th. CF Fuji you can use it for group rides and chase down those roadies. When you want to make a coffee shop run leave the Fuji at home and take the Trek. If you are smitten by the road bike bug you might as well get a CF bike now because sooner or later you are going to want a light weight bike for climbing.

Point two is when the new models come out they only have two choices. Raise the price or de-content the bike to match the old price. They will more than likely cut back on the wheels or shifters if they try to keep the 2013 bikes at 2012 prices. So why wait if you have the bug? As long as you have the finances.
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Old 09-06-12, 07:54 PM   #6
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Thanks for the encouragement to go ahead

I test drove the Fuji Gran Fondo full carbon, somehow did not like the feel of it.

I like the fit and feel of this Giant Defy very much:

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...y/11498/55820/

Another option has presented in the form of 2013 all new Trek 2.1 Madone, here:

http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...es/madone_2_1/

I am going to test ride this, and I will get a discount from this shop.
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Old 09-06-12, 10:09 PM   #7
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If you are still riding long rides then go for the new bike. If the upcoming winter months will have you riding short rides then you can go with the hybrid for that, then get the new bike when you are ready to start serious training next spring.

I've been riding nice road bikes for over 25 years and I don't regret having them. I would not have enjoyed my riding as much with my original heavy clunky bike. Well my 20+ year old road bike was a pretty nice bike but not so nice compared to the best new bikes on the market. I crashed 2 years ago and totaled my frame so I ended up riding an old Trek hybrid. After 2 years off the bike my muscles aren't back yet, I was also interested in trying the more upright riding style. I've determined that there is about 10% difference between the hybrid and a good road bike, maybe even 15%. IOW in a given amount of time if I did 50 miles on this hybrid bike it would be equal to 55-60 miles on a good road bike. If you're riding for fun and exercise it doesn't make so much difference but if you are riding with groups it will mean the difference between riding in the group and getting dropped.
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Old 09-07-12, 12:34 AM   #8
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Another option has presented in the form of 2013 all new Trek 2.1 Madone, here:

http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...es/madone_2_1/

I am going to test ride this, and I will get a discount from this shop.
LBSs love repeat customers, be sure to talk with them about a trade in on your 7.2 FX if you're not of a mind to keep it.

When I moved from a 2011 4.5 Madone to a 2012 5.2 Madone my dealer made a great deal with me on trading in my 4.5 Madone.
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Old 09-07-12, 04:48 AM   #9
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Did I read that bit on the Madone 2.1 correctly.....they now have an aluminum Madone? I gues they upgraded the name of the former 2.1.

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Old 09-07-12, 11:11 AM   #10
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My path has been similar to yours. I got back into cycling this summer and hastily got a Trek 8.3DS as a do it all bike. I found out quickly that I wanted to do longer and longer road rides and had little interest in off road. I decided to take advantage of end of 2012 sales and got a Spec. Secteur with Apex and am so glad I did. If I had it to do over I would have got a used hybrid as my DS has become my utility around town bike but didn't need to get a new bike for that. There's no way I would have known without getting out riding.Now I've got two great bikes and am riding every day which is the point of it all for me. I suggest going for it. At least in the meantime you've got a good ride while you carefully research a new bike. Hopefully you will be able to do good long test rides. I was able to test a Synapse 105 which was my second choice as Specialized was blowing out their SRAM apex bikes and had them for $300 off, both Secteurs and Roubaixs. I also rode a Surly pacer to try a steel bike but the Secteur/roubaix fit was perfect for me.
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Old 09-07-12, 02:41 PM   #11
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I went back to the LBS from where I bought the Trek, and they did a fit for me. Things have taken a bit of turn with this visit. First, they insist the right size for me is 58cm, and not 56cm which is what I have been going around with. The Giant Defy I tested was a 56, although it felt ok at that time. They put me in on a 2012 Felt Z6 which is what they had on the floor, I did a fairly decent ride and felt good about the climbing and shifting on the bike.

Only problem, I feel my arms are stretched out, they say it is because I have to relax the back and lean forward. This bike is a relaxed fit, so I was thinking I should get more upright positioning. May be this is because I am not familiar with road bikes? They also let me test ride a 58 and 56 Trek 2.1. I was surprised how inferior the Trek 2.1 felt after riding the all carbon Z6. But these were both 2012 models and not the new 2013 Madone, which they don't have built yet. So I am not sure how much of a difference 2013 will make. They are building a 2012 Felt Z85 which I can Test in another day or so.

Right now I am even more confused, from a sizing stand point it appears 58 is right fit for me, in which case I should go back to other shop a Test ride a Giant Defy in that size to get a feel. Other option is my LBS is giving a price discount on Z6. It is now listed $1499, they will sell it to me for $1425. Original MSRP is $1699. This is a closeout item. The shifters are Tiagra though and not 105 and I was not wanting anthing below 105, although I could not make the difference in shifting when I rode it. I am thinking since it is full carbon and climbs nicely and feel good fit, then Tiagra is fine, especially for this price as a first road bike. I can also get a 2013 Z5 from them as Z6 is discountinued from 2013. Price is close to $1799, less a 5% discount. It is still Tiagram shifters, not sure worth it for that price.

choice down to now:
giant defy 1 - have to try 58cm
Felt Z6 - not sure of Tiagra
Felt Z5 - stretch price and not sure of Tiagra
Felt Z85 - have to test ride
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Old 09-07-12, 03:22 PM   #12
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I went back to the LBS from where I bought the Trek, and they did a fit for me. Things have taken a bit of turn with this visit. First, they insist the right size for me is 58cm, and not 56cm which is what I have been going around with. The Giant Defy I tested was a 56, although it felt ok at that time. They put me in on a 2012 Felt Z6 which is what they had on the floor, I did a fairly decent ride and felt good about the climbing and shifting on the bike.

Only problem, I feel my arms are stretched out, they say it is because I have to relax the back and lean forward. This bike is a relaxed fit, so I was thinking I should get more upright positioning. May be this is because I am not familiar with road bikes? They also let me test ride a 58 and 56 Trek 2.1. I was surprised how inferior the Trek 2.1 felt after riding the all carbon Z6. But these were both 2012 models and not the new 2013 Madone, which they don't have built yet. So I am not sure how much of a difference 2013 will make. They are building a 2012 Felt Z85 which I can Test in another day or so.

Right now I am even more confused, from a sizing stand point it appears 58 is right fit for me, in which case I should go back to other shop a Test ride a Giant Defy in that size to get a feel. Other option is my LBS is giving a price discount on Z6. It is now listed $1499, they will sell it to me for $1425. Original MSRP is $1699. This is a closeout item. The shifters are Tiagra though and not 105 and I was not wanting anthing below 105, although I could not make the difference in shifting when I rode it. I am thinking since it is full carbon and climbs nicely and feel good fit, then Tiagra is fine, especially for this price as a first road bike. I can also get a 2013 Z5 from them as Z6 is discountinued from 2013. Price is close to $1799, less a 5% discount. It is still Tiagram shifters, not sure worth it for that price.

choice down to now:
giant defy 1 - have to try 58cm
Felt Z6 - not sure of Tiagra
Felt Z5 - stretch price and not sure of Tiagra
Felt Z85 - have to test ride
How long did you ride on the 58? When I bought my hybrid, I went to the same LBS twice, and two different employees sized me. The first put me on a large, and it seemed okay for a short ride. When I went there again after a couple of weeks, I did a much longer ride (about 30-35 minutes) and discovered that the large was stretching me, and my elbow hurt! So though stand over was fine, the top tube was too long. A different employee switched me to a medium, and that felt extremely good.

Moral of the story: go for a long ride!
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Old 09-07-12, 08:17 PM   #13
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How long did you ride on the 58? When I bought my hybrid, I went to the same LBS twice, and two different employees sized me. The first put me on a large, and it seemed okay for a short ride. When I went there again after a couple of weeks, I did a much longer ride (about 30-35 minutes) and discovered that the large was stretching me, and my elbow hurt! So though stand over was fine, the top tube was too long. A different employee switched me to a medium, and that felt extremely good.

Moral of the story: go for a long ride!
This is exactly what I kept thinking. It may feel okay for a short 5 mile ride I did today, but when I do 50 miles and up it is going to kill my elbows. In fact I wasn't all that comfortable even on the short ride, but the guys at the shop, all 3 of them kept insisting this is the right size. I am beginning to think they have a bias in general about pushing people into slightly higher size than they actually should be. To check on 3rd opinion, I went to REI, to check out on Cannondale Synapse even though they don't have the 105 in stock anymore.

They sized me up on a 56 as well, and boy was I glad I went there! The Synapse fit perfect and I had the best ride so far among all the road bikes I tested. Only the Giant Defy comes close, both were 56 btw. But, now I am in love with the Cannondale Synapse, too bad they only have the 7 with Sora shifters on it.

I called up all REI stores within 30 mile radius, none of them have any stock left.

I am going to wait until 2013 comes out, after riding this bike, I feel it is worth waiting for.

Last edited by theoddone; 09-07-12 at 08:22 PM.
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