Hey guys, this is my first post in the Track section. I really admire you guys, and I really want to try a race or two next year in Indianapolis. I'm looking at a really good price on a Giant Omnium track frameset from my LBS. I really love fixed gear riding, but I haven't had a true track bike, or even true track wheels. I just want to know if this is a good frameset. It is aluminum with a carbon fork. I've heard that the geometry is almost the same as their Tour bike, but I'll have to get this confirmed. I tried searching the forums, but the SSFG forum was the only place that returned any trace of help.
Giant doesn't list anything but frame material and price, no geometry, but that BB sure does look stiff!
While I'm on geometry, what kind of seat tube angle should I be looking for? My roadbikes have 73º, and this is the most critical measurement for me. As for fit, should I go for a frame size that perfectly fits me, one that stretches me out a little bit in the arms, or a size smaller? I usually go for a size smaller in road bikes, but that is only so that the steering is twitchy.
I have seen the bike, and the finishing its ok. The fork is a TT road fork, not a real track fork but I guess it does a fair job after all (has a hole in the middle). How it rides? no idea. People say they ride ok but i really dont know. Well the frame is compact geometry so you have to find whats the size that fit you the best, so use the virtual lenght of the frame to figure it out. For example if u use a 57 in the road and a medium is like a 55.5 and the large frame is like a 58 I would recommend go for the smaller size.
73 degrees for a track bike is too relaxed, but lately many brands have come up with road configurations in their track frames. If you ride too streched in the arms your position will be too relaxed, that means slow reactions, hard to jump to counterattach and other stuff... Well I have no idea about anything so dont listen to me ok?
Destroyer of Worlds
Better to ride a smaller bike than a bigger one for stiffness and lightness, but a bike that fits is best cause then you ride most efficiently, comfortably, and all that jazz.
Relaxed arms are good for reacting quickly because you have to relax your arms to turn anyhow. I don't think your arms would be relaxed stretched out though--rather more like tense.
I'd want this for pursuit and TT's. I'd like the red paint scheme they have though, similar to the track bike one, but they use the frame of the bike at the top of the "tier" for that frame-type. I could always just buy the complete bike and sell off the nice parts it comes with...
Okay, I came back with some specs. For the 54.5cm frame (Medium), the Head tube angle is a 73º, and the seat tube angle is at a 75º. Apparently Giant didn't add these specs to the 2007 model roster, but my guy at the LBS called up, and Giant said that the specs haven't changed since last year. Eventually we found it in the 2006 book. Hopefully I can swing a deal on this. It seems that two guys at the LBS want my mountain bike, so I could give it to one of them and get (a lot) of money off of the frameset.
So are these angles enough? I don't think the fork rake was mentioned, but it should a a 38-40, right?
CK21 - To answer your 2nd q first, you should go for a frame size that perfectly fits you (!). All the stuff about riding a frame size smaller on the track etc is a generalised adage from the old days; often riders would be riding the same frame and fork for TT's, road racing and track; these generalisations are just that, and they're largely meaningless when you're looking at track-specific frames like the Giant. Add in the fact that it uses compact geometry and only comes in 3 sizes anyway and the meaningless of these generalisations becomes even more apparent.
Originally Posted by CrimsonKarter21
Similarly, you can't look at a single aspect of geometry- eg the seat tube angle - in isolation and extrapolate whether the frame is going to be a good track frame for you or not from that alone. You have to look at - and even better actually ride - the thing as a whole before you know whether its a good fit for you. Lots of people spend time on forums agonising over whether their 74 degree headtube etc is 'track' enough, but this is all just interweb onanism. You've really got to try and ride the frame to know whether its a good fit. If you can't ride one, you at least need to consider the whole package and compare it to somethiing that you do ride to know whether it'll likely be a good fit. Steering responsiveness, for example, is a product of head tube angle, fork rake / trail, track steepness & radius, fr. wheel choice etc.
Having said all that, what is known is that the Giant Omnium frames are used in international competitions, Track World Cups, the Olympic games etc by track riders at the highest level of the sport, so you can be pretty sure that it'll be up to the job / responsive enough for you, so long as it fits you. If you can get a deal, I'd say go ahead - they're well made, TiG welded mass-produced alu frames that will be plenty stiff / responsive enough for you as someone starting out on the track.
Okay, thanks a lot mickster, I actually prefer a smaller frame anyways due to (sometimes) slightly steeper angles, and steering responsiveness. Now that I do know that isn't some stupid idea from a corporate at Giant trying to cash in on the fixed gear craze by welding on new dropouts onto a roadbike frame (Giant Bowery, anyone?)
Now I'm almost definetely going to get the frame. I'll try to get her out to Major Taylor this summer!