Let's make it unanimous.
Sara, I can't really see what advantage the standard chainset will give you. You'll almost never use the top end and the 13% lower bottom end will make a big difference to your ability to spin up the hills.
That's what I'll do!
Thanks for looking out for me.
Vance, see you at the Worlds! ;)
My climbing is an area of weakness, and it always will be. It has improved, true, but I doubt the compact crank (which I used for a long time on Look) will show me much improvement over what I already can do. Here's a fun fact: Barloy Canyon Road, 2.4 miles long, averaging 6% (12 to 14% near the top), is rated Category 4. My best time up that thing is 18 minutes and change. One of the fellas on my MBRT team did it this past Tuesday on a casual group ride in 8 minutes. Those are Racer Ex numbers! If I could get down to 15 minutes up that frakkin hill, I'd be really happy (just before I stroked out at the top).
The Toupe is flat back to front (and is the same as a Ruby with less padding), I think the Oura is the women's version of the Ronin, which curves up in back. If you like the Oura, I can't see a reason to change, it's not super heavy or anything.
So, for the gearing, I can't tell you if your time would be any better on a particular climb, but being able to spin instead of mash should help with whatever comes after it. As your aerobic conditioning improves with your training, using a gear that lets you spin will take advantage of that, and when the pavement flattens out you will be able to recover and continue, instead of maxing out your muscle power (not sure how to say this technically) and having nothing left.
I was just curious about the saddles, that's all. I like the Oura, I will use nothing but!
I don't spin on climbs. I'm not exactly a diesel, either. I sit between 50 and 60 RPM and motor my way up. Today I did a repeat of the Snelling and CCCX success on a long, fast group ride. I paid particular attention to what worked and what didn't (as in tiring me) on climbs. I confirmed that I do my best work OTS on climbs, especially attacking (no surprise there). I can NOT spin up when OTS, or I'll overspin and be in trouble. Seated, my RPM is just slightly higher than OTS, and that's in a gear lower. All that said, and I know we're talking about cadence and gearing - I only went OTB once today on a long climb (I needed recovery), but I made up ground on the descent and then really attacked the following climb (and surprised a few people, too). Back to gearing, my climbing is a weak spot, but it's not as bad as it once was (it was a 50 mile training ride today, and I was climbing as well at the end as I was early). The other weak spot is top speed. Even in a pack, sheltered, once things get above 25 to 26 MPH, I start running into trouble. I can't sustain that for long. Oh, sure, I can spint up to low 30's, and I can sustain 20 - 22 OTF or on a pull, but above that - not long and I'm gassed. I'm working on that, believe me, and things have improved there - that was another head turner today, as well - how well I did on pulls and OTF (I did escape once, for about four miles - heh!). Yes, there are things that the bike can help me on, gearing can help, but all in all, it's on me. I have to improve, and I am.
I put 33 miles on the CAAD yesterday while it was in race trim. What a bike! My early impressions of it were reinforced. It's aluminum, but it doesn't ride like it. I wouldn't call it smooth, you certainly feel the big bumps, but the small ones - including chip seal - are well dampened. It's not the least bit buzzy, and it did not beat me up. It has excellent straight line stability, but when you tell it to turn, it does so quickly. I'm still getting used to that. It doesn't mind changing lines in a corner, but it's not twitchy. The other bikes I have a lot of time on become more stable at speed, and CAAD does that, too, but it responds to input just as easily and quickly at 35 MPH as it does at 15 MPH. The Ultegra 6700 group shifts faster and more positively than the 6600 I'm used to. The lever throw is shorter, too. The front shifts really well, very quickly and easily. The hoods are smaller, a lot like the Campy on the L'una, and are quite comfortable.
That CAAD really is a race machine - and as I said earlier, now I know what you guys are talking about.
I had a double check on fit yesterday afternoon. I went to my LBS, Winning Wheels in Pacific Grove. Hector uses a charting system and has records on everyone he's ever fitted. The data sheet has info on each bike the rider has (that have been measured), as well as dimensions on the rider. Hector took my measurements yesterday, and like most gals, I have a short torso (that was news to me, I have always believed I had a longer torso than most other women - I don't!) - or is it that I have long legs? Whatever. Hector told me that according to the measurements, the CAAD and L'una are actually about .5 to 1 CM too long in the top tube for me, where the Look is almost 2 CM too short. He said the CAAD and L'una fell into some nebulous "that's okay" zone for that top tube length vs. me, and they do both feel good. He told me the saddle height on them, according to the numbers, could come down .5 CM (I'm going to leave that alone for a while), but he suggested a 9 CM stem for the CAAD (it has a 10 CM). Saddle height on the Look was okay, but setback on it was too far forward, he felt, and he wants me to bring it in to do some more fitting on it. Ex said I would probably fit better on the Look with a 12 CM stem, and Hector said the same thing. I'll try that sometime down the road. As for reach and stack, the CAAD and L'una are similar, the stack being .5 CM lower on the CAAD. I wanted to lower the stem on the CAAD's steerer, but Hector said to ride it as it is for a while. He pointed out that not only is the stack lower on that bike, but that the handlebars are 43 CM, as opposed to 40 CM on the other two bikes, and that slight difference pushes my arms out and lowers my upper body even more. Interesting!
43cm sounds pretty wide. That would be the first change I made.
Okay, TT bike question. I have a lead on a 2008 Felt DA1 frameset (with brakes, base bar, aero bar extensions, shifters, brake calipers, cables) for a really good price. Is this bike TOO dated to consider? It's worlds apart from what I currently ride. It's also a 54CM, 700C bike, and Felt says it would fit me. I have wheelsets to choose from.
Hi @sarals, I don't know much about the 2008 DA1 but 54 cm does not sound right to me since every 54 cm TT bike that I've looked at is too big for me. What is your saddle height (center of BB to top of saddle, measured at the low point of the saddle)?
Cleave - 69.85 CM. I'm smaller than you, too. Maybe Felt uses different measurements? The Felt rep I spoke to said "52 or 54" in the DA would work for my height. Now, a thought - that might be true for the 2013 DA, and I did tell him I was looking at a 2008.
Numbers: ST C-T 540, stand over 764, TT 544.9, TT rear position 545, TT front position 528.
That would fit me, and I'm 5'10".
Okay...move on to the DengFu then!
Is that the same as Kung Fu?
Exactly the same, only different. ;)