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Old 06-25-10, 02:11 PM
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Ottawa, ON, Canada
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Originally Posted by z90 View Post
It would help to know more. Are you building up a bike, or buying a complete bike? What kind of riding do think you want to do with it (commuting, group rides, tooling around town, etc)? Do have another bike, and if so, what is it? Also, what's your budget?
Well I'm looking for a replacement for my full-on road bike (Lemond Maillot Jaune). The Lemond is too big for me and I figure I'll get something a touch more practical at the same time. I'll also be using it for commuting and would like to put my change of clothes on a rack rather than a backpack. (Little rack-top bag, not panniers.) I don't plan on doing any racing. I've done a century on the Lemond and in a few years might want to get back to that sort of riding with this bike. Right now I'm leaning towards a Soma Smoothie or an ES. I'd either transfer my Ultegra from the Lemond or maybe buy new Ultegra/105.

The ES has (real) fender clearance, and the Smoothie doesn't. Without being able to go out and ride one of each, I'm not sure how much of a difference the geometry would make in the feel of the bike. I've been thinking of trying to find complete bikes with similar geometry to do some comparisons, but haven't gotten around to it. (Also I think that I'd be wasting someone else's time trying bikes that I don't plan to buy.) The differences between the Smoothie and ES aren't huge, but big enough that they go to the trouble of manufacturing both...

And now, the confession, the big advantage that the Smoothie has over the ES is that the Smoothie comes in white (nice!) and the ES is deep red (blech.) If I can convince myself that the fender clearance is worth it, it could tip me towards the ES.

I have a winter bike for in the snow (and salt,) but this bike would be for all other weather. I have plenty of experience riding in the rain, and it's not like my drive-train has been disintegrating, but that grit must be wearing it down faster than if I were a Fair Weather. Enough to make it worth buying a deep red bike? Hmmmm.... Not sure yet.

Thanks everyone for your comments.
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