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  1. #1
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    2005 to 2010 frame -what makes it better?

    I am considering an upgrade to my frame. Currently a 2005 trek Madone, and considering a 2010 5 series madone. What I am wondering is, will I notice the difference and will it make me a better cyclist? I am new to racing (crits), cat 5, but have won a cat4/5 race and doing great in sprint laps, generally win them, or split with one other guy. I followed a cat 2 (didn't know until after the race he was a cat 2) in a race through super fast tight corners while the rest of the pack went way wide. So do I keep riding and getting better on my current bike, with absolutely nothing wrong with it, fits perfect, never sore in places I shouldn't, or spend a bunch of money on a new frame? What would I gain/how would it help me in being a better cyclist?

  2. #2
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    This is getting a big 41, but I have relevant data points for you...

    You might notice a difference. Won't make you better, but may hold you back less.

    The difference I noticed going from a 2006 Madone to a 2010 Fuji SST was that the frame's dynamics now allow me to hold 400+W through some descending curves that I had to coast through with the Madone (and that I was braking for on my 2000 steel bike). Overall, aggressive cornering is much more natural with the 2010 frame.

    That, and I broke my bb shell on the Madone doing intervals. The bb shell on the SST is much beefier (just ask rkwaki)

  3. #3
    **** that mattm's Avatar
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    Save the money for food, gas, and race entry fees.
    pro-meter: lol

    blog

  4. #4
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    Disclaimer: I don't know anything about Madones. The following is what I've experienced. Hopefully it'll help you in your decision process.

    If you're doing well, specifically if you're cornering/sprinting well, then I'd save my money.

    If, at the limit, you wish for something more from the bike, that would be a push to get another bike/frame/etc.

    I don't have any Trek road bikes but when I went from a straight steerer (1 1/8", Giant TCR, circa 2004 or so) to a tapered steerer (1 1/2" lower, 1 1/8" upper, Cannondale SystemSix, 2008). I didn't think I had a problem with the TCR but a few guys mentioned how flexy the TCR felt relative to their various Cannondale frames.

    When I got the SystemSix I noticed that it cornered much, much better than the TCR. There's a very hard turn on a downhill around here, 45 mph, very hard turn. When I take it I am usually pushing the limits, doing a late apex so I don't end up on the wrong side of the road. Initially on the SystemSix I took the same line as I did on the TCR and to my surprise I found that I could easily follow the right shoulder as I exited the turn. I found that I could go faster around the corner, although I never went fast enough that on exiting I thought "wow, that was the limit".

    Before I could do that I got a custom geo frame, to fit my long torso. Due to the builder's limitations I couldn't get a tapered head tube. My bike's handling, with various good forks on the front end, reverted back to the slightly slower TCR's. It might be because of the longer wheelbase, etc, but the front end doesn't feel quite as planted. If I had my druthers I'd get a tapered fork version of my frame and use the Cannondale tapered fork (because then I'd know if it was the fork or not).

    That's my way of saying that the tapered forks are probably a bit stiffer laterally than your current fork, and they'll probably handle a bit better when you're at the absolute limit.

    Finally, something I posted here in BF recently. A teammate started racing a few years ago. Two years ago he upgraded from an alum/105 Felt to a carbon/Ultegra Madone. This year, his first as a 3, he got carbon tubular race wheels. He was raving about his wheels non-stop. When he upgraded his bike? Not a peep. In fact he mentioned something about should have gotten power or wheels or something like that, rather than a bike. If you want to burn some cash then get some light aero wheels for the quickest upgrade to the bike or power for tracking/training.

  5. #5
    Senior Member shovelhd's Avatar
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    I'm not a big believer that equipment is going to make someone a "better cyclist". You can't buy time, effort, and dedication. That said, CDR has a good point. If you feel that you are pushing your existing bike to the limits, then maybe an upgrade will help take you to the next level. You're a Cat5. Nowhere to go but up.

    One thing I'll mention is do not assume that geometry is the same between different years of the same model or series. I broke my 2010 Felt F5 and got a 2013 Felt Fc as a crash replacement. By the numbers the geometry is very close, but on the bike it is completely different. It has taken me most of this season to dial it in, and it's still not where I was with the F5. Don't get me wrong, the Fc is a much, much better frame than the F5, but it is more of a pro fit, i.e. long and over the bars.

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    In the Pain Cave thechemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattm View Post
    Save the money for food, gas, and race entry fees.
    +100000000

    On a side note though, I wouldn't get any madone without the new kamfoil technology which I believe started in 2012 with the 5 series?

  7. #7
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    If you're winning, and cornering better than most of the field, and there's nothing wrong with the bike and it "fits perfect", what do you expect to gain? If it ain't broke, and fixing it would cost money, it's a no-brainer.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

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    Thanks for the replies. The reason I didn't post in the "road" section is my goal is racing, and how an upgrade will affect that aspect. I don't feel limited by my bike at all. My only comparison is my 1995 trek that I rode for a week recently due to replacing the front fork. Only difference with that one was slightly more flex if out of the saddle to sprint and overall a bit heavier. Bike shops say the new frames are so much better, but yet when I ask for specifics there are no answers to how that translates to racing. Numerous friends spend thousands on their bikes and it doesn't seem to translate to better/faster riding.

    Chasm, exactly what I was wondering, what would I gain? Sounds like nothing to minimal gains are to be expected.

    CHemist - what is to be gained from that model with the kamfoil design? and how does it translate to racing?
    Last edited by denvertrout; 07-31-13 at 07:05 AM.

  9. #9
    Wheelsuck Fat Boy's Avatar
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    I have a 2006 C'dale six-13 and a 2010 Felt AR1. It's nice (mentally) having an aero bike, but I think the C'dale is the better handling of the two. From what I understand, the guys that work at Felt ride the 'F' series bikes and so do the pros that race Felts. The lesson is that newer is not necessarily better.

  10. #10
    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by denvertrout View Post
    I am considering an upgrade to my frame. Currently a 2005 trek Madone, and considering a 2010 5 series madone. What I am wondering is, will I notice the difference and will it make me a better cyclist? I am new to racing (crits), cat 5, but have won a cat4/5 race and doing great in sprint laps, generally win them, or split with one other guy. I followed a cat 2 (didn't know until after the race he was a cat 2) in a race through super fast tight corners while the rest of the pack went way wide. So do I keep riding and getting better on my current bike, with absolutely nothing wrong with it, fits perfect, never sore in places I shouldn't, or spend a bunch of money on a new frame? What would I gain/how would it help me in being a better cyclist?

    the idea that a cat 5 needs something more than whatever bike is under them is utterly and completely 41.

    I'm fairly certain the bold part isn't possible. in what set of circumstance can a 5 be in a race with a 2?

  11. #11
    Making a kilometer blurry waterrockets's Avatar
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    Really good points in here. To temper my experience, note that the only noticeable improvement between all of my frames has been in cornering, particularly on rough surfaces. Surely there are other improvements contributing to performance, but I can't feel them. That said, before I moved to carbon, I won some crits on really rough courses on my steel Ritchey against a bunch of carbon wonder bikes. The bulk of my Cat 2 upgrade points were earned on steel in 2008. Still, I can feel a difference.

  12. #12
    Cat 5 Mod Jandro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    the idea that a cat 5 needs something more than whatever bike is under them is utterly and completely 41.

    I'm fairly certain the bold part isn't possible. in what set of circumstance can a 5 be in a race with a 2?
    Agreed. Moving.
    Attack in the feeling because it says I'll win absolutely.

  13. #13
    Who is Austin Dunbar?
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    Quote Originally Posted by denvertrout View Post
    CHemist - what is to be gained from that model with the kamfoil design? and how does it translate to racing?
    The Kamtail Virtual Foil on the new Madones is supposed to be as aero as a bike with the full aero profile tubes. The difference is as the yaw increases, it will behave better since the tube is not a fully tapered aero tube and thus presents less area to the wind. Does it work? Who knows, every manufacturer claims the fastest most aero frame and they will present you with their stats to prove it.
    And I wanna play a little game I like to call "Block My Spike" with Misty May. - House

  14. #14
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
    . To temper my experience, note that the only noticeable improvement between all of my frames has been in cornering, particularly on rough surfaces.
    Carbon fiber frames continue to get better, stiffer where you want them to be stiff, lighter, and more comfortable. The biggest performance difference I noted going from a 2007 Giant TCR Team Advanced to a 2012 Willier Trestina Zero 7 was also in cornering. The front end is stiffer, giving me more confidence cornering and descending, which seems to translate into faster cornering and descending.

    The new bike is also more comfortable to ride.

    But the differences are really marginal. If you can afford it and want it, get the newer bike, odds are you will enjoy. I doubt it will change your race results one iota, though.

    Given that you're in the Crash 5's you might want to get a bit more race experience before you buy the new bike, particularly if replacing the frame would be a hardship.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
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    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  15. #15
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    "the idea that a cat 5 needs something more than whatever bike is under them is utterly and completely 41".

    The idea that you have any clue as to my cycling abilities is utterly and completely absurd Being a Cat 5 only means that I am new to "racing", not new to cycling, and really no bearing on my cycling ability. What you can assume is that the finer details of "racing" and racing "tactics" are new to me. Where my post starts or end (which forum) is of no concern, but to those contributing to it I appreciate your responses and they are helpful.

  16. #16
    Senior Member shovelhd's Avatar
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    You have absolutely no idea who you are talking to.

  17. #17
    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by denvertrout View Post
    "the idea that a cat 5 needs something more than whatever bike is under them is utterly and completely 41".

    The idea that you have any clue as to my cycling abilities is utterly and completely absurd Being a Cat 5 only means that I am new to "racing", not new to cycling, and really no bearing on my cycling ability. What you can assume is that the finer details of "racing" and racing "tactics" are new to me. Where my post starts or end (which forum) is of no concern, but to those contributing to it I appreciate your responses and they are helpful.
    I don't care what your abilities are. The bike at the cat 5 level is not a limiter.

    Quote Originally Posted by shovelhd View Post
    You have absolutely no idea who you are talking to.
    I'm still waiting for the explanation of how a 5 and a 2 were in the same race.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    I'm still waiting for the explanation of how a 5 and a 2 were in the same race.
    I'll bite The race is a Cat 4/5 series held in a local shopping mall parking lot. Seeing as it is meant for beginner racers, or that is my assumption, they offer mentoring/skills clinics. One of the cat 2 riders that races after us, joined the race I was in for probably 10-12 laps. Was he riding at his full capabilities? doubtful.... but I held his lines through all the corners as they were faster and I was comfortable with it. Anyway, the reason I mentioned that originally is because I didn't feel like I was being limited by my bike and wanted/want to know what the benefit is from a new frame in regards to my racing future. Hope that answers your question.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Dan333SP's Avatar
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    Test ride some bikes and decide for yourself. I like to think the frame makes little or no difference because I have a bottom of the line carbon Madone (3.1) and I get a little envious when I see a 5 or 6 series on the line, but really the aero/handling benefits seem to be so marginal that it's almost entirely subjective.
    Last edited by Dan333SP; 07-31-13 at 09:26 PM.

  20. #20
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    I don't know anything about Madones but I went from a 2007 Cervelo R3 to a 2012 Cervelo R3 and I was shocked at how much nicer the frame was. I am 55 years old and don't race anymore but the difference was far more than I expected. I had a minor crash and cracked the rear seat stay on the older frame. I had it repaired but had to wait 2 months for the repair so I just went out and bought the new bike. I thought I was buying the exact same frame but the difference was night and day. The old bike now sits on my basement trainer. Cervelo definitely upgraded that frame in that 5 year period. I couldn't go back to that older frame design.

  21. #21
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    As a Cat5, I raced in an all-category M35+ race. Stupid cat5 that I was, I figured it would be easier than the Cat 5 race.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  22. #22
    Senior Member shovelhd's Avatar
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    HahahahahaBOOM

  23. #23
    . bbattle's Avatar
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    I've talked a few times with a local racer who said frames don't make nearly as much difference as new wheels.

  24. #24
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    I would expect that my 2000 Trek 5200 is 95% as good (whatever that means) as my 2012 Ridley. I should build it back up again and test it, I suppose.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by denvertrout View Post
    I'll bite The race is a Cat 4/5 series held in a local shopping mall parking lot. Seeing as it is meant for beginner racers, or that is my assumption, they offer mentoring/skills clinics. One of the cat 2 riders that races after us, joined the race I was in for probably 10-12 laps. Was he riding at his full capabilities? doubtful.... but I held his lines through all the corners as they were faster and I was comfortable with it. Anyway, the reason I mentioned that originally is because I didn't feel like I was being limited by my bike and wanted/want to know what the benefit is from a new frame in regards to my racing future. Hope that answers your question.
    If you can't lap the field easily in such a race, the bike ain't holding you back. And if you can lap the field easily, the bike doesn't matter. If you ain't this guy, your bike is good enough. The guys responding here are being really nice to you, BTW.

    The fact that you can hold a decent line through turns really isn't saying much. As just a crappy cat 5 myself, I am constantly amazed at how piss-poor cornering is in a cat 5 pack.

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