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will bike weight make a difference to an old guy like me?

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will bike weight make a difference to an old guy like me?

Old 09-01-20, 07:51 AM
  #26  
indyfabz
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Originally Posted by jpjuggler View Post

The all city space horse is a light touring bike at 25 lbs. and I can't try it yet because of the bike shortage in my area.

The long haul trucker is 30lbs and is available now and has the super low granny gear that i would also like.


So... at my age and so so fitness level, do you think I will enjoy the lighter bike in the sense that the bike will accelerate faster and be faster in general? I like fast. (fast for me that is, )
First off, I would call the Space Horse a light touring bike. Light in the sense of the load it can carry before things start getting weird, not the weight of the bike. Also, with that gearing, you would probably have a difficult time carrying a load over hilly terrain.

Secondly, the geometry of the LHT (and tire size, unless you swap them out) are going to slow you down.

I do fully-loaded touring, commuting and unloaded gravel riding on my LHT. I also have a sleek, custom ti road bike. If you are looking for fast, don't get the LHT, especially if you are not planning to do much touring. You will be thoroughly disappointed. It's specifically designed for one thing: Fully loaded touring.



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Old 09-01-20, 08:03 AM
  #27  
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It probably is fair to say that if you ride less than an hour at a time that getting a lighter weight bike won't be a big deal. And the weight might even be giving you a better workout during that time.

However for longer ride times, the longer you ride, the more weight will be a factor. If you regularly do two or more hour rides, then the less weight, the more energy you will have to finish the ride feeling like you met your challenges instead of being beat up by your challenges. And for certain, you'll have more energy to go further if longer is what you want.

And if anyone mentioned aero, then yes the longer the ride, the more aero your position, the more aero your bike frame and the more aero your wheels, you will also see some difference that you won't notice with short rides.

But if touring with a load, then you need aero panniers and bags too, otherwise the aero other stuff is lost.
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Old 09-01-20, 08:20 AM
  #28  
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Okay, it sounds like what you really want is a racing touring bike. No problem, you've come to the right place and already received a lot of good, if sometimes a bit conflicting, advice. If you really do plan on doing self-supported touring then I think the LHT or some other dedicated touring bike makes sense because you don't want to constantly be fixing broken spokes or scared out of your mind while descending some hill because the frame is shimmying all over the place. But the LHT, or its ilk, will be noticeably different from a more speed-oriented bike, and not just due to it's increased weight--there's the whole geometry thing to consider. So maybe decide which aspect is more important and get a bike that is the better-suited to that end knowing you'll sacrifice something on the other end...OR, and I can't believe it hasn't been suggested by this group yet, get one dedicated for each use---N+1 baby!
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Old 09-01-20, 08:39 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by 5 mph View Post
That's the same crisis I am going through.Bike weight.
I ride a Giant Talon 29er. Its listed af 29.5 pounds but my V kickstand, seat and tubed tires make it 33 pounds. I like this bike because it's so safe. I feel like I am in my family car coming down a hill at high speed and if I hit a pothole or a tree branch or debris field I'm not going to get injured. Right now I have strong legs and arms but some day...
BTW a bike can be like a dog. Hard to part with.
Thanks for everything you"ve done for me Talon.. you never complain ...we been through good times and bad together sniff sniff .tears..Daddy loves you..
Crisis? You're riding a cheap, heavy mountain bike. I'm not trying to say it's not good at what it does, but in a discussion of road bike weight the best place to start is with a road bike.
I have a 32 pound full suspension mountain bike and it will bash through a lot of stuff, but it sucks on the road.
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Old 09-01-20, 08:56 AM
  #30  
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Here is my friend riding his Lightspeed road bike with a seatpost rack and panniers. He's small enough so the extra load doesn't threaten the rear wheel or the bike.

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Old 09-01-20, 09:00 AM
  #31  
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Same trip, another seatpost rack and she is also carrying a large backpack, which didn't bother her at all, she was still the fastest of the 8 of us and she is riding a nice Moots racing bike.

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Old 09-01-20, 10:43 AM
  #32  
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My touring bike with comfort in camp gear was rather heavy , but I made it from Dublin to Aberdeen ,
via the west coasts of Ireland & Scotland, for my 50th year..
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Old 09-01-20, 11:01 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
Same trip, another seatpost rack and she is also carrying a large backpack, which didn't bother her at all, she was still the fastest of the 8 of us and she is riding a nice Moots racing bike.
You bring up a good point. When many people say "I also want to tour" they don't provide details on what "style" of touring. Credit card? Camping? Camping and cooking? Hilly/mountainous terrain? Paved roads and/or unpaved roads. As your photos illustrates, you can do some type of touring on a road bike. A good friend of mine has ridden as far as Philly to Atlanta on his carbon Fuji with only a trunk bag on a rear rack and a handlebar bag.
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Old 09-01-20, 11:17 AM
  #34  
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I don’t have light bikes. Even my Cannondale Criterium is 21lbs. Both my hardtails are around 27lbs.

There is not a chance I would ever consider a 30lb bike for the road.

As much as I hate to say it, you just haven’t done your homework. Since the main factor so far has been comfort, go get the geometry of the LHT, especially the top tube length. Search the web for other light touring, endurance bikes and and ask about those bikes. No one can offer an opinion on the two choices you have provided.

Everyone wants you to find a bike you will really like and ride for a long time. Limiting it to those two bikes is a mistake.

John
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Old 09-01-20, 05:32 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
You bring up a good point. When many people say "I also want to tour" they don't provide details on what "style" of touring. Credit card? Camping? Camping and cooking? Hilly/mountainous terrain? Paved roads and/or unpaved roads. As your photos illustrates, you can do some type of touring on a road bike. A good friend of mine has ridden as far as Philly to Atlanta on his carbon Fuji with only a trunk bag on a rear rack and a handlebar bag.
This was a fun trip where 8 of us took the train to Central California and spent 6 days riding back including some sight-seeing loops. We stayed in motels and didn't need to carry a lot of stuff. One guy had a BOB trailer and he carried the most stuff and one of the women packed too light and didn't have a sweater or jacket to wear in the evening when we went out. I think BOB guy gave her a sweatshirt to wear.
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Old 09-01-20, 05:56 PM
  #36  
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The problem with heavy steel bikes is not so much the weight. It's that they are designed for heavy loads and thus way too stiff and uncomfortable to ride any distance unloaded. IMO, any distance loaded, too. What you want is carbon frame and fork. The rest of it doesn't matter so much, except that you'll want low gears, the lower the better, but still road bike components. You'll be riding this bike for the next 20 years anyway, so you want a good fit and lower gears than you think you need now, or at least the capability of same. I'm still riding a '99 carbon bike, race frame, Ultegra. No sign of it getting old, except that I've worn out all the components several times over.

OTOH if you want to go touring, get a touring bike, too. There are wonderful carbon touring bikes now, which can fill both rolls, sport and touring. There's a good primer on touring carbon with 50 suggested bikes, here: https://www.cyclingabout.com/carbon-touring-bikes/

BTW, you're not old. I was still getting faster on long distance events at your age.
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Old 09-01-20, 06:14 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
This was a fun trip where 8 of us took the train to Central California and spent 6 days riding back including some sight-seeing loops. We stayed in motels and didn't need to carry a lot of stuff. One guy had a BOB trailer and he carried the most stuff and one of the women packed too light and didn't have a sweater or jacket to wear in the evening when we went out. I think BOB guy gave her a sweatshirt to wear.
I can honestly think of only one “credit card” tour I’ve done. Overnighter starting in DE to the Eastern Shore of MD and back. Around 160 miles. My ex-GF rode her fixie and I carried our clothes, etc. Everything else has been fully supported or self contained, not that I haven’t gotten the occasional room during self contained tours.
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Old 09-01-20, 06:42 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I can honestly think of only one “credit card” tour I’ve done. Overnighter starting in DE to the Eastern Shore of MD and back. Around 160 miles. My ex-GF rode her fixie and I carried our clothes, etc. Everything else has been fully supported or self contained, not that I haven’t gotten the occasional room during self contained tours.
My ex and I used to do overnight "tours" of about 75 miles each way. I had the touring bike and she had a Trek 1420 which I put a rear rack on. Those were some fun trips, sometimes with another couple, and I really miss that.
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Old 09-01-20, 07:45 PM
  #39  
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Those same people that complain about bike weight will outfit their bike with two or even three waterbottle cages, using large 24-32oz bottles, too. That's a pound and a half to two pounds per bottle just for the water inside. three bottles = five pounds or more. I've never carried more than one bottle - even on long rides of up to 120 miles. So what If I stop at a convenience store after 30-40 miles for a Gatorade -or- my favorite cool-down refresher is a popsicle or two! You can't carry those in your jersey pocket!
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Old 09-01-20, 09:54 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Cougrrcj View Post
Those same people that complain about bike weight will outfit their bike with two or even three waterbottle cages, using large 24-32oz bottles, too. That's a pound and a half to two pounds per bottle just for the water inside. three bottles = five pounds or more. I've never carried more than one bottle - even on long rides of up to 120 miles. So what If I stop at a convenience store after 30-40 miles for a Gatorade -or- my favorite cool-down refresher is a popsicle or two! You can't carry those in your jersey pocket!
Tomorrow I am riding in the mountains and it will be hot. I'm taking 2 large bottles plus a 70oz Camelbak as there is no water on the route. This is almost 8 pounds.
It doesn't matter how much the bike weighs, I need the water.
I've done long mtb rides where I carry more than that. I've drank 220 ozs and wanted more.
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Old 09-02-20, 01:12 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
Tomorrow I am riding in the mountains and it will be hot. I'm taking 2 large bottles plus a 70oz Camelbak as there is no water on the route. This is almost 8 pounds.
It doesn't matter how much the bike weighs, I need the water.
I've done long mtb rides where I carry more than that. I've drank 220 ozs and wanted more.
Ditto.

The main reason I successfully climbed Haleakala in 90+ degree heat was my wife driving SAG with extra bottles.
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Old 09-02-20, 07:14 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by cubewheels View Post
It will depend on your body weight. The heavier you weigh, the less you'll notice the weight difference between two different bikes.

If for example, you weigh 200 lbs and between a 20 lbs or 30 lbs bike (add that to your weight). The difference in total weight including your body weight (220 lbs vs 230 lbs, your weight plus the bike).

You'll only see a difference of 5% which is a rather small percentage.... And since your body, especially your legs is already quite adapted to hauling around your 200 lbs weight, the 10 lb difference will be mostly in your head If you're more comfortable with the 30 lbs bike, you might actually get much farther with it than the 20 lbs but less comfortable bike.
It doesn't matter how much you weigh. If you add 10 pounds anywhere, bike, body, load, you still have to increase your wattage by the same amount to carry that weight up a hill.
If you're a heavier rider you are already at a disadvantage to lighter riders when climbing, adding more weight just makes it worse.
When climbing, 10 pounds is a considerable load for any of us. If I'm already maxed out trying to stay with a 150 pound rider, throwing 10 more pounds on my bike is going to drop me back even more.
If you're doing a long climbing day, you have to carry that extra weight up every hill which adds to your fatigue.
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Old 09-02-20, 07:17 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
It doesn't matter how much you weigh. If you add 10 pounds anywhere, bike, body, load, you still have to increase your wattage by the same amount to carry that weight up a hill.
Same absolute amount, but higher percentage for the lighter rider. Since most contributors to fatigue scale proportionally, the percentage change matters more than the absolute.
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Old 09-02-20, 07:24 AM
  #44  
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That's really good to hear that you have the same energy that you had in your early days.

Kudos!
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Old 09-02-20, 07:29 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Same absolute amount, but higher percentage for the lighter rider. Since most contributors to fatigue scale proportionally, the percentage change matters more than the absolute.
But in the real world someone who drops me on hills is still going to drop me if you add the same weight to our bikes. If we all started out equally the percentage thing might make sense. But we don't.
Besides, a light bike is more fun than a heavy one.

I have to go but this is starting to get interesting.

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Old 09-02-20, 07:51 AM
  #46  
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A light bike is more responsive.

Comparing a Emonda SL to an SLR, the SLR jumps as you're getting up out of the saddle while the SL lags a bit.

You won't know unless you ride both.. i have.
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Old 09-02-20, 08:25 AM
  #47  
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Weight, any weight, matters! Ask anyone who has gone for groceries, small or large!

The ride home is always harder, even if it is mostly downhill!
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Old 09-02-20, 08:55 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by cubewheels View Post
A heavy rider of the same fitness level and age as a lightweight rider will always have higher sustained and maximum power. 10 watts is a smaller thing to heavy riders compared to lightweight riders.

That said, if 10 lbs do make a significant difference to you then by all means take that option.
10 pounds makes a significant difference to everyone.
A heavier rider may have a higher power output but a heavier rider needs a lot more power to climb. Notice how those super fit heavy sprinters get dropped like a rock in the mountains during the Tour?
It boils down to watts per kilogram and the human body can only produce a certain FTP which doesn't increase at the same rate as body weight. In other words, the watts per kilo are not going to be as high for a 200 pound rider as they are for a 150 pound rider if they are of similar fitness. You will never see a great climber of 250 pounds. Never. At the pro level you will never see a great climber of 180 pounds, at least compared to the other pro climbers.

The woman I pictured with the backpack above is about 120 pounds. She is one of the best climbing women I have met. If she can put out 300 watts, for example, I at 200 pounds would have to produce 500 watts to maintain the same climbing speed. This is from Analytic Cycling.
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Old 09-02-20, 09:11 PM
  #49  
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I understand that being bigger has it's advantages which is why I do a little better on the mountain bike against the same people who can drop me on the road. Part of this is due to the bursts of power on the mtb, similar to sprinting.
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Old 09-02-20, 10:01 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by cubewheels View Post
I agree about heavy riders vs lightweight riders in climbing. But heavy riders will own the flats, TT, and downhill to a number of factors (like aerodynamics not scaling with body weight which places heavy riders at an advantage in speed in the flats and downhills).

This is why in the Tour you'll still find significant diversity in terms of rider weight. If there's a climb, there's a downhill too and flats in between where heavy riders excel at.
The flats have helped me stay in long, hilly rides. Years ago I could make them work on the flat sections, that is if they would wait for me after the long climbs.
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