Thread: Build your own?
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Old 07-01-07, 01:24 PM
cab horn
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Toronto
Posts: 28,335

Bikes: 1987 Bianchi Campione

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Originally Posted by fireworks
-Good rims (Alex R500(?))
-Good spokes
-Rims that will take a 28c - 38ish tire. I'm trying to avoid a suspension.
We need to know your weight. The higher it is the more you have to pay attention to the wheel. Number of spokes, quality of the rim and quality of the wheel build.

-Good relible derailleur and front derailleur. This is the one I'm not sure how far you need to go to get a solid product. It looks like 105 is as low as you want to go, but I'd go lower if you're just buying longevity versus performance. I'm not planning on putting on major mileage in the next couple of years.
I just want solid shift, and as little as possible adjustments.
False, Sora does everything 105 does substantially cheaper. The only thing you are paying for past sora is for the bling factor and for lightness.

-Fork that will absorb impacts well. I think carbon is my best bet, again I don't know what is a good brand for the money versus a cheap one.
Also false, get a steel fork. Any sort of ding on your carbon fork and it CANNOT be ridden. If you're going for a all carbon fork, it necessarily has to be high quality and expensive. From the description you gave of what you want on a bike, carbon has NO place on it. There is NO reason to have CF on your bike at all. It sounds like you've fallen prey to the "must buy cool looking stuff I see in magazines syndrome".

-Handle bars that absorb impacts. Style on this one is a toss up. I'm not opposed to drops, but I like the height and width and brake placement of the straight bars. Don't know if there is a drop bar that comes close.
You need to test ride a couple of bikes to find out before you purchase. Switching to drop bars and associated STI systems is VERY expensive if you start out with flat bars. The converse is also true. For your purposes it sounds like flat bar is the way to go. Again - ride it and find out for yourself.

-Seat stem. Carbon?
Not sure what seat stem is but there's also no reason for your seat or seatpost to be carbon. Complete waste of money.

Anyways that should give you an idea of what I like.
$1k should get you a very decent commuter bike. Nothing terribly heavy and nothing terribly light either. Is this $1k including accessories as well? You WILL need full fenders unless you live in the desert and you may optionally want to put on a rack as well. To that end, your bike must have eyelets on the fork and 2 sets of eyelets on the rear stays to accept rack/fenders. There's no reason to buy a bike without these.

These recommendations dramatically change if you envision yourself doing some hardcore road riding (e.g not on MUPS) in the near future.
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