Hi everyone. I'm currently going through a bit of a bike dilemma. I'm at university at the moment and have decided I'm bored of living without a bike. Initially I thought about getting a nice foldiing bike, then I realised I wouldn't be able to race it and looked at what I could get in terms of a normal road bike for the same price and I'd pretty much settled on building one...
Then a spanner got thrown in the works. I went home over easter and saw my lovely Bianchi D2 Axis and thought "why waste all that money when I already have a bike that I love". As with all things though it's not perfect. It is a rather heavy relaxed bike, not ideal for a 130lb 22 year old such as myself, so there are some things I'd like to remedy about it. Below is a quick list with my thoughts of likely solutions but some I am not sure about and would like some input with.
1. My STI levers are shimano ones, and tbh I just don't find them that comfortable. I tried out a bike in a shop with campy levers and they just felt so much nicer. I'd rather not have to change my whole drivetrain but have heard about 11 speed campy shifters working with 9 speed shimano derailleurs. I'd happy to try this out, and if it doesn't work then I'm fine with having to either go back to shimano or swap completely to campy. I'm thinking of getting a pair of chorus levers so I can benifit from the multiple shifts in both directions. There doesn't seem to be much infortmation on the internet about the front derailleur though. Would it work ok or would I need to get a campy one (not too expensive) but would that then work with the rest of my drivetrain?
2. I can't get as an aggressive position as I like due to the headset mounted hanger being in the way. The forks on my bike have a hole for mudguards. Is it ok to attach a brake cable hanger through this so I can lower my handlebars a bit more?
3. The feel of my brakes is far from stellar. Hopefully changes 1 and 2 will help. If not I geuss I'll try some wide profile brakes at the front and see how I get on (I currently have Avid Shorty 3 front and back.
4. Weight. My bike is pretty heavy. I think around 12kg from what I remember. The other changes might help with this a bit but I'm not sure how much. From what I hear loosing weight of the wheels is a good place to start. ATM it has Mavic CXP 22 rims on tiagra hubs with god knows what flat profile spokes on it. Seeing as I am quite a light person I figure I can get away without quite such burly wheels but I don't know where to draw the line if I still want to be able to do some cyclocross type riding with it. Any tips on wheels for a guy like me?
5. Finaly, and this is a minor quibble. I'd like it if I could someone make the steering a bit "quicker". From what I gather this is a property of the head angle, and there's not really much I can do to change that. Because I have quite a slight build I've wondered if narrower handlebars would make a difference, something I've been thinking about doing anyway, especially if I'm going to be redoing the shifters. And other ideas as to how I could speed up the handling?
Sorry, that was a pretty gargantuan post. Any help with any of the point mentioned would be much appriciated. Thank you.