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I never should've never returned that road bike I was borrowing.. ;c) NEXT: Build one

Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

I never should've never returned that road bike I was borrowing.. ;c) NEXT: Build one

Old 03-13-15, 05:39 PM
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SeanEboy
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I never should've returned that road bike I was borrowing.. ;c) NEXT: Build one

Aright.. So, I was using an S-works, on loan/I dumped $600 into it on parts, then the guy moved away.. I felt bad, so I returned it to him, despite his never even contacting me, nor informing me of key moments in his life, etc... but, returning the bike is, and always was the right thing to do, obviously. You're a crappy friend, pal!

Long story short, he was nice enough to let me use it for a good few hundred, if not thousand miles... And, I liked cycling so much, that I want to get my own bike now.

I'm 6'2", about 290 lbs, and was told to buy a Roubaix when I last walked into the bike store if that means anything. That S-works I was riding had Ultegra on it, and I enjoyed it very much. I'd like to go for similar quality on this build, all around. Unless someone has a better suggestion? I saw a decent slickdeal on some Shimano products the other day, and that got me thinking.


Suggestions on a frame to choose?

Suggestions on a grouppo other than Ultegra? I've read that the weight/quality difference is minimal at best to the lower grades now, so it's not exactly a sure shot to go for Ultegra. Is that right?

I don't know where a budget needs to be on this, I'd imagine the components are about $1500 alone, and I'd probably have to drop at least $800+ on a frame to match, right?

Or, is it like the 'build your own, vs buy dell' phenomena, where there's little/no savings in building your own, only parts selection? I do have a bit of urge to build stuff, so there definitely is a desire to learn how to work on it myself/etc with that.

I live out on Eastern LI, so it's not exactly 'hilly', although there is about 275' above sea level around here somewhere, and the air sure does get thin up there.. ;c)

I appreciate your insight!
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Old 03-13-15, 06:01 PM
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Almost always better to get a complete bike instead of a separate frame and components. Exceptions would include if you 1) already have many of the needed parts, 2) have an exceptional preference for a particular combination of parts that you can't find on a suitable bike, or 3) have an unusual body size or other factor which requires a custom-built frame.

Go for some test rides of bikes - the optimum geometry and designer choice of comfort vs. stiffness, etc. that's best for you may not be best for others so you really need to determine this for yourself. At the same time you can try bikes with different component levels. Ultegra is a bit lighter than 105, but functionally there's little difference - but again it's best to compare for yourself since some minor differences might be important to some individuals. And you might also try some Campagnolo and/or SRAM-equipped bikes to compare with Shimano.
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Old 03-13-15, 06:51 PM
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Buying a ready-made bike is generally a much better value. Since you are a big guy/really big gal, the main items you should be concerned with are wheels. Most factory bikes come with lightweight low-spoke-count wheels that may not last long under a big rider. You could either see if the shop you buy from can build a higher-spoke-count wheelset (or even just the rear) or ride the stock wheels start having problems, or sell the stock wheels and buy a pair of tougher ones.

You mentioned Ultegra, and in my opinion Ultegra parts are just about the best parts you can pay for. There are 'better' parts but imho they are not worth the extra money for most people. Ultegra hubs are probably the best for building wheels for a big rider.
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Old 03-13-15, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by prathmann View Post
Almost always better to get a complete bike instead of a separate frame and components. Exceptions would include if you 1) already have many of the needed parts, 2) have an exceptional preference for a particular combination of parts that you can't find on a suitable bike, or 3) have an unusual body size or other factor which requires a custom-built frame.
One can scrounge used parts and do ok, but it is tough to match some of the "bargains".

One thing about bike manufacturers is that they inevitably cut corners... simple things like generic straight spokes, where custom building your own, you might upgrade to name-brand double butted spokes, or perhaps upgrade from 105 level to Ultegra level. So, I believe there are benefits of a home-built.

I think 290 lbs is pushing it a bit on the road bikes. But, don't go for ultra low spoke counts (36 is good), and somewhat wider tires are good (28mm?).

Consider "Cyclocross" class bikes.

Don't forget to look and see what pops up on Craigslist. I'm surprised you didn't just offer to buy your friend's bike.
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Old 03-13-15, 07:06 PM
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If you can find a frame, pick up your group set from one of the English companies and save a bundle on the group set. Then you can pick up your Ultegra group. I personally love the Ultegra stuff myself and have it on both my bikes.
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Old 03-13-15, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by SeanEboy View Post
Suggestions on a frame to choose?
You need to have a better idea of what you want before we can offer suggestions. Have you test ridden a Specialized Roubaix (or Trek Domane, Giant Defy, etc)? What about a more race-oriented frame like the Specialized Tarmac (or Trek Madone, Giant TCX, etc)?

Suggestions on a grouppo other than Ultegra? I've read that the weight/quality difference is minimal at best to the lower grades now, so it's not exactly a sure shot to go for Ultegra. Is that right?
Can you feel the difference in performance between Tiagra, 105, and Ultegra components? If you can't feel the difference between, say, Tiagra and Ultegra and you're not trying to win the Tour de France, then paying for a more expensive component group may be a waste of money.

If you're looking for a good entry-level component group, I'd suggest Shimano 105 or SRAM Rival.

I don't know where a budget needs to be on this, I'd imagine the components are about $1500 alone, and I'd probably have to drop at least $800+ on a frame to match, right?
If you want a carbon frame from a major manufacturer, you'll need to increase your budget substantially. Specialized, Trek, etc. generally don't sell bare entry-level frames. If you want to buy a bare frame, they only sell mid- to upper-tier models with prices that tend to be in the $2000-3000+ range for carbon fiber frames. You can find $1000 carbon fiber frames, but they'll be from lesser-known or no-name brands (ex: PedalForce).

If you want Ultegra-level components then $1500 is a good budget. You may have to do a bit of bargain-hunting, but it shouldn't be too difficult end up with all the components necessary to turn a frame into a complete bike for around $1500. The wheels you end up with for that price might not be the best, however. If you're willing to purchase components from outside the U.S. you might be able to save additional money.

Or, is it like the 'build your own, vs buy dell' phenomena, where there's little/no savings in building your own, only parts selection? I do have a bit of urge to build stuff, so there definitely is a desire to learn how to work on it myself/etc with that.
Yes, it's exactly like this. Building your own bike will generally cost more than buying a brand-new bike unless you're a very good shopper and have quite a bit of time to spend bargain hunting.
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Old 03-13-15, 08:21 PM
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could have offered to buy it from him...
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Old 03-13-15, 08:27 PM
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What exactly were you riding before? S-works what? Roubaix? Tarmac?

If you liked it that much, go buy another one of the same thing and happy cycling to you. You really don't need to spend the s-works premium though.
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Old 03-13-15, 09:28 PM
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Originally Posted by sstorkel View Post
If you want a carbon frame from a major manufacturer, you'll need to increase your budget substantially. Specialized, Trek, etc. generally don't sell bare entry-level frames. If you want to buy a bare frame, they only sell mid- to upper-tier models with prices that tend to be in the $2000-3000+ range for carbon fiber frames. You can find $1000 carbon fiber frames, but they'll be from lesser-known or no-name brands (ex: PedalForce).
I'd avoid buying major brand frames direct from China as you never know what you're buying.

However, there is quite a used market for frames... which are often dirt cheap.

It is always unclear if major manufactures are using one frame with different component groups, or adjust the frame's specs along with the component groups.

However, there are people who have bought bikes with the lowest component group. Pulled the group set off and sold it on E-Bay as a "new pull", then installed the group set of their choice, potentially saving thousands over a direct purchase.

I.E. The difference in cost between the same frame equipped with Tiagra and Ultegra may be enough to completely pay for the Ultegra group set (and allow reselling the cheaper one).
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Old 03-13-15, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by SeanEboy View Post
Aright.. So, I was using an S-works, on loan/I dumped $600 into it on parts,
You didn't say what parts and whether you installed them, but if you did the work and you like that kind of stuff, you should seriously consider a build of your own. There's something cool that's just kinda hard to explain about riding your own creation down the road.

You would be hard pressed to find better bang for the buck than Ultegra. The cost/performance is outstanding. I saw the entire group for sale online for about $600 recently.
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Old 03-14-15, 07:30 AM
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IMHO Shimano uses "trickle down" on the groupo's ?? So if you were riding Ultegra that was a few years old the 105 of today might be equal to it other than some cosmetic differences ??

Bill
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Old 03-14-15, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Willbird View Post
IMHO Shimano uses "trickle down" on the groupo's ?? So if you were riding Ultegra that was a few years old the 105 of today might be equal to it other than some cosmetic differences ??

Bill
5800 is basically 6800 except cosmetically and some slightly heavier components. I went with 6800 on my bike build because it only cost me an extra $150 for the groupset and I preferred the look of the 6800 groupset. 5800 is the best value groupset ever though IMHO.
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Old 03-18-15, 06:14 PM
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Thanks for all the great input folks! Sorry I've been MIA for the last week, work will do that to me... So, yeah, it was an '05 S Works this one - http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v7...DSC_0003bb.jpg that a user on this site has dating back to a post in 2010. Anyway, I really enjoyed the bike, and loved getting on it. I think it was a 60cm(?), and perhaps it was a tad big for me, but I made it work very well. The only complaint I could possibly come up with, was that I wished the bars were literally about a "bars diameter" higher. Or, maybe it was just because I would ride with my fists resting on top of the bars during the end of the rides because I was getting lazy. ;c) I don't know...

But, yes, I loved everything about that thing. The roads out here are not exactly smooth, so maybe something that was a bit more 'comfortable' might be on the preferential side rather than racer side of things.. Whatever tires he had on there held me well, and he was a tall twig. I only got one snakebite on it, in terms of tire troubles.

I am perfectly fine with bargain hunting, in fact I have a knack for it.. so, used parts would be fine with me, provided there's a savings to it. I'd imagine going used on the whole bike is the way to go.. or maybe used frame, and new parts.. Here's something that is being offered locally, and caught my eye based on cost, and size.. It's double my budget, and not sure where in terms of 'value' for me, but check this out:

Colnago masterlight (61) with campi chorus setup, carbon handlebars, stem, pedals and seat post. Bikes in mint condition and has around 500 miles on it. Asking $3k

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Old 03-19-15, 04:38 PM
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your 6'2"? I seriously question you needing a 61" frame. I am 6'5 riding an xl sworks roubaix and still only run a 110 stem.

I know trojan is about your height and I think he rides a 58.

Colnago Strada SL Ultegra 6800 Bicycle - Complete Bikes - Excel Sports

I think these are killer deals and great bikes. Read the colnago sizes as they are not typical. they have lesser priced models there too. Great guys to deal with, I buy a ton of stuff from them....call and ask for drew.
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Old 03-19-15, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
your 6'2"? I seriously question you needing a 61" frame. I am 6'5 riding an xl sworks roubaix and still only run a 110 stem.

I know trojan is about your height and I think he rides a 58.

Colnago Strada SL Ultegra 6800 Bicycle - Complete Bikes - Excel Sports

I think these are killer deals and great bikes. Read the colnago sizes as they are not typical. they have lesser priced models there too. Great guys to deal with, I buy a ton of stuff from them....call and ask for drew.

Thanks a lot for the input! Man, I must admit, that was love at first sight on that link... ;c) It's entirely possible that the frame isn't the right size, however I enjoyed riding the bike to no end.. I'd imagine if it was an ill fit I'd have some sort of unpleasantness other than wishing the bars were a bit higher, right? Regardless, I'm definitely ok with changing sizes, getting fitted, whatever it takes to do it right.
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Old 03-20-15, 05:05 AM
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Hey, FWIW, I am also 6' 2", long legs, and a 58 is way too small. I find a 60cm trek to be a good fit. A 61 could easily work too, I think. Just wanted to throw that out there, sitting on a few bikes should make it pretty easy to get in the ballpark.

Surfing this forum has also helped me find ways to improve fit. Things like moving seat fore/aft...

Good luck on purchase!
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Old 03-20-15, 06:57 AM
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I like how people are talking about sizes of different frames based on one measurement, and assuming that means anything.

I'm 6'2', have ridding 57, 59, 54 inch and probably a few I forget, all of which have fit me perfectly. It depends on the geometry of the bike, not one measurement!
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Old 03-21-15, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by dr_lha View Post
I like how people are talking about sizes of different frames based on one measurement, and assuming that means anything.

I'm 6'2', have ridding 57, 59, 54 inch and probably a few I forget, all of which have fit me perfectly. It depends on the geometry of the bike, not one measurement!
I only mentioned it because I was riding that size on one, as a reference point. Don't worry, I'm not buying a size off forum posts. However, I will definitely start at recommended sizes for sure.
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Old 03-21-15, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by SeanEboy View Post
I only mentioned it because I was riding that size on one, as a reference point. Don't worry, I'm not buying a size off forum posts. However, I will definitely start at recommended sizes for sure.
Yeah, the comment was less aimed at you and more at the people commenting about how bike X of size Y wouldn't work for you based on their experience with bike Z.
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Old 04-24-15, 09:15 AM
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So, I went into the LBS...and I was shown a nice looking blacked out Specialized... Price tag: $6500, or maybe it was $8500.. I can't remember. I coughed. He then showed me a Roubaix SL4 Sport I believe? $2100 was the price tag on that one.. more around my alley. But, I'm very fond of the second hand market savings. The problem is, it's kind of hard to find my model, let alone my size... Anyone have any insight on this? Should I go for new this time around, for once? Or, keep searching until that deal comes around....? I want to ride though... himph, in the end, I know it'll all pretty much be money well spent. The sooner I ride, if I pay a bit more, it'll be like a gym membership that started earlier.. on new equipment...
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Old 04-24-15, 09:23 AM
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If you want savings you can also look for NOS / last year's model. Sometimes shops will have one they just need to unload so you can save a couple hundred that way. Or keep your eyes on craig's list - the drawback of buying used is that most manufacturer's won't honor the lifetime frame warranty for anybody but the original purchaser. Specialized tends to be more expensive than their competition - you can look at Giant Defy or Cannondale Synapse models too.

You can also buy a used frame and build your own bike if you're into that but don't do it because it's cheaper - it's really not.
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Old 04-25-15, 09:15 AM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
If you want savings you can also look for NOS / last year's model. Sometimes shops will have one they just need to unload so you can save a couple hundred that way. Or keep your eyes on craig's list - the drawback of buying used is that most manufacturer's won't honor the lifetime frame warranty for anybody but the original purchaser. Specialized tends to be more expensive than their competition - you can look at Giant Defy or Cannondale Synapse models too.

You can also buy a used frame and build your own bike if you're into that but don't do it because it's cheaper - it's really not.

Thanks for the input Trojan! I'll take that NOS tip and see what I can find.... Perhaps broaden my horizons as well... What does $2k get me in Colnago?
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Old 04-25-15, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by SeanEboy View Post
Thanks for the input Trojan! I'll take that NOS tip and see what I can find.... Perhaps broaden my horizons as well... What does $2k get me in Colnago?
An aluminum one:

Colnago Strada SL Ultegra 6800 Bicycle - Complete Bikes - Excel Sports
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Old 04-25-15, 02:34 PM
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Yeah, I was going to say - if there's a brand that is even more highly priced than specialized, it's Colnago, Pinarello et. al.
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Old 04-26-15, 06:22 AM
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The Cannondale Synapse is similar to the Roubaix, and beat it out in testing by many magazines - 2014 model. Should be able to get into one with 105 or Rival for around $2000.
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