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View Poll Results: Which bike would YOU recommend ?
2008 Kestrel Talon w/SRAM Red 9 25.71%
2009 Look 566 w/ SRAM Rival 6 17.14%
2009 Cannondale Synapse Carbon 4 3 8.57%
2009 Cervelo Soloist w/SRAM Force 2 5.71%
Trek Madone 5.2 w/SRAM Rival 2 5.71%
Specialized Roubaix w/Ultegra SL 2 5.71%
Pinarello FP2 3 8.57%
Orbea Onix TDI w/Campy Mirage 2 5.71%
Other (Please describe and explain why) 6 17.14%
Voters: 35. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-27-09, 02:48 PM   #1
Sgt C USMC
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If you were going to spend $2500 on a road bike, which one would YOU buy ?

Hey all,

It's bike-buying time. Given my budget of $2500 inclusive, I have quite a few options. So many in fact, I'm not sure which direction to go, so I'm asking for your help.

I'm a 6'0" 180 lb guy with a 32 inch inseam. I'm currently riding a low-grade carbon-fibre frame with an ultegra triple set up that flexes when I stand on it. So if I stay with Shimano grouping, i would want to stay with Ultegra or higher. If I go with SRAM or Campy, I'm more flexible.

I prefer a bike that will allow me a lot of versatility. I typically ride rollers with my wife, but I do enjoy climbing in Julian, and I like doing group rides and races up and down the coast. I also plan on doing triathalons eventually.

Looking through the bike stores, I've narrowed it down to several choices .

1. 2008 Kestrel Talon w SRAM Red setup from Bikesdirect. - Say what you want about Bikesdirect.com, but this is an amazing bargain at 1,995. I've ridden both the 08 Kestrels and the 09 Talons w/ Ultegra, and the ride was very good, and I know the size I need. Not too stiff, but not 'squishy' either. Good middle of the road carbon. Add a set of race wheels, and I'd be golden. Added bonus, the seatpost has the option to switch it forward to ride tri's with.

2. 2009 Look 566 with SRAM Rival setup from B&L Sports. - While not as high end components as the Kestrel, this was a fantastic riding bike (aside from the Fulcrum 7 wheels which weigh a ton!) Very stiff carbon, (and a nice looking bike to boot!)

3. 2009 Cannondale Carbon Synapse 4 with SRAM Rival setup from Nytro. They were out of this bike in my size, but the one I saw looked amazing. Very clean contemporary lines, nice stiff bottom bracket, and a decent grouping. The 1,800 pricetag was a plus too.

4. 2009 Pinarello FP2. I don't know much about this bike, they didn't have one in my size. I must say that I liked the appearance of it, and it seemed well built.

5. 2009 Cervelo Soloist w/ SRAM Force set up. The only bike I'm considering that isn't Carbon. Who knows, maybe I'm too hooked on CF to realize the benefits of aluminum. But the Soloist is an awesome looking bike, and I'm planning on renting one for a day to try it so I can get a feel for it. I got there just as they closed, so I didn't get an opportunity to ride one.

6. 2009 Trek Madone 5.2 with SRAM Rival set up. Trek's 5.x frames are legendary, but that comes at a cost. I'm not sure this is a cost-efficient decision. It's at the TOP of my budget, and I'd like some of that money to go to a wheelset if I can.

7. 2009 Specialized Roubaix Expert from B&L. It's a specialized full carbon with ultegra grouping. 'Nuff said.

8. 2009 Orbea Onix with Campy Mirage setup. This one's only on the list because of the campy set up. I can't find anyone who stocks this bike, so it'll be tough to sell me on this one.

Alright guys, as you can see, I have more money than knowledge; never a good place to be. Please help me out!!

If you have any more recommendations, feel free to let me know!

Last edited by Sgt C USMC; 10-27-09 at 02:57 PM.
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Old 10-27-09, 04:33 PM   #2
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If you are considering Bikesdirect, go titanium for $200 more/over your budget:
http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/..._teamti_10.htm

The 2008 Kestrel Talon is a good deal for a tri bike. The 2009 comes with mostly Ultegra components and costs about $130-300 more.

A humorous review of the Look 556:
http://bikesnobnyc.blogspot.com/2009...-566-road.html

All the bikes you listed are good ones. Would be hard to choose or eliminate any of them.
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Old 10-27-09, 05:04 PM   #3
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Perhaps you'd be able to find a recession-orphan? I'd shop around for an '08 model of one of the above (or equivalent) with Dura-Ace 7800 components. I haven't ridden Sram, but after riding with two (less-fortunate, IMO) riders who do, I don't think I ever will.
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Old 10-27-09, 05:16 PM   #4
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Ive ridden the Soloist. No offense to anyone that owns that bike but the ride is really harsh. Otherwise its great if you dont mind the harsh ride. Look 566....feels stiff but I didnt get to sprint or ride up a hill with that bike. It feels race worthy on slower speeds up to 15mph. Its a decent bike also. I have a history of buying Trek bikes. They feel really comfortable and the ride quality is smooth as silk on perfect roads. Specialized Roubaix is very comfortable and the frame is responsive but I feel its somewhat "slower" than other frames.

For comfort and ride quality, I choose

Specialized Roubaix or Trek Madone 5.2

For prestige and responsiveness, I choose Look 566

Overall, I choose, Pinarello FP2 even though I have never ridden the bike. It just looks really cool and I wish I could afford a bike from such a respectable company. Thats where my vote went.
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Old 10-27-09, 05:19 PM   #5
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PedalForce RS2 frame build with Rival.

Actually they have a deal on Rival with ZX3 frame going now for 1200. You can build quite a nice bike around that for 2500... Not sure how ZX3 compares to RS2 thought, but I do love my RS2 frame. I like it much better then CAAD8 (aluminum), and Ridley Oreon (carbon) I have riddent.

Last edited by UmneyDurak; 10-27-09 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 10-27-09, 05:39 PM   #6
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Yo, jughead, just test ride all of them and go with the one that turns your crank.
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Old 10-27-09, 06:14 PM   #7
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go for best fit and comfort. all that blingy stuff is just bling imo
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Old 10-27-09, 06:26 PM   #8
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They had an '09 Talon SL at Performace in Oceanside for $1800 a few weeks ago. Almost impossible to beat that deal.
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Old 10-27-09, 06:48 PM   #9
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Have you test ridden any of the component groups you're considering? I can tell you from experience that Campy hoods feel and fit differently than Shimano. Personally, if I were about to buy a bike myself, I'd be test riding a few bikes with SRAM.
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Old 10-27-09, 10:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UmneyDurak View Post
PedalForce RS2 frame build with Rival.

Actually they have a deal on Rival with ZX3 frame going now for 1200. You can build quite a nice bike around that for 2500... Not sure how ZX3 compares to RS2 thought, but I do love my RS2 frame. I like it much better then CAAD8 (aluminum), and Ridley Oreon (carbon) I have riddent.
Pedal Force is my new favorite website. I speced out a full RS2 with SRAM Force/Red components for just over 2,000. My only holdup is not being able to see/ride the bike BEFORE hand.

But I did find a bike store that's selling 09 Tarmac SL framesets for $1000. That would make a nice buildup with any groupo. I may buy that frame, and then purchase the parts from pedalforce. I could build a Tarmac SL with full Dura-ace for just over $2300.

What can you do with a sub 15 lb bike? Everything!!
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Old 10-27-09, 11:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chucklehead View Post
They had an '09 Talon SL at Performace in Oceanside for $1800 a few weeks ago. Almost impossible to beat that deal.
If I was able to squeeze into a 48 cm frame, this article wouldn't be up.
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Old 10-28-09, 01:36 AM   #12
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Or what about this frame ? I'm sure the Cannondale guys will approve of this one...

http://www.nytro.com/products2.cfm/B...and/Cannondale
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Old 10-28-09, 08:02 AM   #13
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As a member of SDBC I think you can get the Cdale for $1,399, instead of $1,800. You can join SDBC on line for $35.00.
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Old 10-28-09, 03:16 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calamarichris View Post
Perhaps you'd be able to find a recession-orphan? I'd shop around for an '08 model of one of the above (or equivalent) with Dura-Ace 7800 components. I haven't ridden Sram, but after riding with two (less-fortunate, IMO) riders who do, I don't think I ever will.
I voted for the SRAM red Kestrel, because SRAM red is awesome! That's my 1-person focus group result.
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Old 10-28-09, 05:57 PM   #15
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Save yourself a bunch of money for some 1st class toggs and accessories. This 06/7 Madone 5.2 60cm is available for $1500 with full Ultegra group, compact crank, Bontrager Race Lite wheelset, Fizik Arion saddle, Richie WCS 42cm bars and 4 Axis 100mm stem.

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Old 10-28-09, 06:14 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt C USMC View Post


Pedal Force is my new favorite website. I speced out a full RS2 with SRAM Force/Red components for just over 2,000. My only holdup is not being able to see/ride the bike BEFORE hand.
Well see how the geometry of RS2 compares to what you have now. I rode CAAD8 before and it fit me quite well. The RS2 has very similar geometry and actually I think fits me a bit better.

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Old 10-28-09, 11:03 PM   #17
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I'd be interested in spending more time with the Look - I'd definitely go with quality frame over components.
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Old 10-29-09, 11:50 AM   #18
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Where are you located? At Camp Pendleton?
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Old 10-29-09, 10:58 PM   #19
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I actually might have found one. I found a recession orphan in a Los Angeles bike shop - a 58 cm 2007 Specialized S-Works Roubaix module in the QuickStep paint scheme for just over a grand. Includes the 170 mm compact crankset, fact carbon forks (I may change these out, but we'll see) and the color matched carbon fiber seatpost. Cost ? $1200. I can buy a full red set up for just over 1,200 from Pedal Force, and end up with an amazing bike for under $2500.

I can't see how this is NOT a good deal...
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Old 10-29-09, 11:29 PM   #20
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Have you considered the Kestrel RT800 instead of the Kestrel Talon?

Kestrel Talon Road Carbon+SRAM Red $1995.99



Kestrel RT800 Carbon 2009 SRAM Red Group $2699.99

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Old 10-30-09, 09:21 AM   #21
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I wouldn't buy a road bike, since I already have one I hybridized because I don't like drops. I'd buy that Trek commuter, the Allant, and take a trip to Washington DC with it. During hockey season.
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