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Giant Defy Help

Old 02-10-23, 12:30 PM
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Giant Defy Help

Hello fellow Cyclists,

I am in need of some upgrades to my 2017(?) Giant Defy ALLUX. The f/n is CC4K0971.
I bought this used several years ago so I'm not clear on the model, it's black n white.

Crank is FSA Tempo 50/34
Shimano CS5800 11-spead 11-32
Shimano 105 levers -- not sure if they are 2x11 (see below)
Shimano Claris front
Shimano 105 long arm rear
Unknown brakes

I would like to upgrade the crank to a shimano 105 and get the 4iiii 105 power meter and upgrade the claris front to a 105 as well.
The BB looks to be a standard threaded FSA with tapers ends.
1- What BB should I get? -- Im reading all about length and width so I'm not sure where to go

I would also like to upgrade the rear sproket keeping the 11-speed 11-34
2- What cassette can I put in?

And of course a new chain...
3- What Chain

I'd like to upgrade the brakes to 105's
4- Can I just buy a set of 105's and drop them in?

The levers say 105 and they have the silver head and the cables are internally routed, (ST 5700???)
The person I bought the bike from had upgraded them so I am not sure they match the 11 speed cassette.
I've always had issues with shifting and I am wondering if this is the problem, or is it just a matter of having them adjusted properly.
Do they work with 10 or 11 speed and is it just a matter of adjusting them?

I look forward to your questions, comments and suggestions.

-Matt-
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Old 02-10-23, 01:15 PM
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Giant Defy stopped being offered with an aluminum frame after 2016. Go to 99spokes.com and search for Defy, then poke around the results to find exactly which model yours is (note that anything with “advanced” in the name is carbon). Finding the model you have will give us a good starting point. FWIW it looks like the 2015 Defy 5 is black and white with a hint of yellow, and came with Claris components.

From there, it sounds like the previous owner changed/upgraded some parts. The Shimano parts should have the model number stamped somewhere (levers probably have it under the hoods).

Chances are just upgrading the brake pads alone will do wonders, but if you want 105 don’t let us stop you.

can you describe the shifting issues? How many gears on the cassette? How many clicks on the right shifter?
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Old 02-10-23, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
The levers say 105 and they have the silver head and the cables are internally routed, (ST 5700???)
The person I bought the bike from had upgraded them so I am not sure they match the 11 speed cassette.
I've always had issues with shifting and I am wondering if this is the problem, or is it just a matter of having them adjusted properly.
Do they work with 10 or 11 speed and is it just a matter of adjusting them?
The ST5700 10 speed and ST5800 11 speed brifter levers are not interchangeable or compatible. Go search up images of each one and determine what you have.
Same with the front and rear derailleurs- you need to find out exactly what you have. There are multiple generations of 105 and Claris and they are not all interchangeable. Look at the castings carefully to see if you can find a part number on these derailleurs.
As to the 105 FC5800 crankset- this one uses an external bottom bracket and there is no 'length'. Just get the BSA bottom bracket.
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Old 02-10-23, 04:06 PM
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Yes... 2015 Defy 5... Blk n White with a lil yellow. To your point... it came with Claris and they upgraded 'some' of the components.
They are 5800's so they are matched with the 11-speed in the rear. Just means they aren't adjusted properly. The shifting was never smooth as in click/shift, click/shift, I just got used to it but never exactly what it should be.
I dont 'have' to upgrade the brakes. It's just the 105's would be a matched set. However, the pads do need to be replaced.

TY
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Old 02-10-23, 04:10 PM
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Since I have determined that I am using the 5800's is that a problem with the Claris?
I wanted to upgrade to the 105 in front anyways, but if there's no real need to do so then why bother spending the $$$ that can be used in other places.
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Old 02-10-23, 04:23 PM
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The 5800 crankset isn't available new.
Can I go with R7000 and the BSA BB?
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Old 02-10-23, 05:19 PM
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If the shifting hesitates to go to a larger cog, you probably need to tighten the cable. If it hesitated to go to a smaller cog, you probably need to loosen it.

it sounds like you have 5800 shifters and 5800 rear derailleur, which should work fine. I believe that would also be fine with the Claris front derailleur as well (but if you want the “matched set” as you say, a 105 FD wouldn’t be super costly)

R7000 should work fine with the same kind of bottom bracket as the 5800 works with. I have a 2018 Defy Advanced 2 which came with 5800 components (actually R510 crank set) and a R7000 went right into the existing bottom bracket without issue. It’s lighter than the R510 or 5800, and still labeled “105” to keep your “matched set”.
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Old 02-10-23, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
Yes... 2015 Defy 5... Blk n White with a lil yellow. To your point... it came with Claris and they upgraded 'some' of the components.
They are 5800's so they are matched with the 11-speed in the rear. Just means they aren't adjusted properly. The shifting was never smooth as in click/shift, click/shift......
Before you go spending $$ on new equipment, do yourself a favor and change your shifter cables and housings. That will almost certainly improve your shifting performance.
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Old 02-10-23, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
The 5800 crankset isn't available new.
Can I go with R7000 and the BSA BB?
Yes.
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Old 02-10-23, 11:13 PM
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You could upgrade stuff on the bike but if it came from the factory with Claris, I wouldn't do anything more than get it safely functional for as cheaply as possible. It is beyond rare to find a good high quality frame that they put Claris on which is one minor notch up from Tourney which sits at the absolute bottom of Shimano's Road and Mountain gruppos. I get that it has some 105 but you are better off saving the money towards something you want then putting a ton into this. However new cables, housing, brake pads and shoes of high quality will be a huge upgrade for less money. Jagwire Sport kit or even better Pro kits would be an excellent upgrade and Kool Stop or SwissStop pads with good stiff shoes (so no one piece stuff replaceable only) would take your braking to a new level for less money.
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Old 02-10-23, 11:41 PM
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Originally Posted by veganbikes
You could upgrade stuff on the bike but if it came from the factory with Claris, I wouldn't do anything more than get it safely functional for as cheaply as possible. It is beyond rare to find a good high quality frame that they put Claris on which is one minor notch up from Tourney which sits at the absolute bottom of Shimano's Road and Mountain gruppos.
FWIW in 2015 you could get the same exact frame with a full 105 gruppo as the Defy 1. Still mass produced, amd the carbon versions went up to Dura Ace and did not offer anything lower than Tiagra, but one could argue they weren't cheap junk frames either.
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Old 02-11-23, 05:37 AM
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Good Morning and thank you all for your thoughtful comments.
To summarize it so far:
New cabling brake/shoes/shifting -- I have to do this anyway so it's an excellent suggestion using Jagwire and will make the bike 'feel' better. $100
New Crank and Cassette -- These are showing their age so they need to be replaced and I wanted to get a power meter. r7000 front and back and the 4iii $475
Leave the Claris -- although the upgrade to the r7000 is only $30
Shimano HG901 chain -- $50
But wait there's more... I need new pedals -- Look Keo $60

So I am looking at around $800 to service the bike.

So this begs the question... At what point do I just get another used bike that has upgraded components? Whats the break point for a new bike?
2018 Cannondale Synapse with 105's and disc $1000 -- its a gravel but it's still an upgrade from my Giant?
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Old 02-11-23, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
Good Morning and thank you all for your thoughtful comments.
To summarize it so far:
New cabling brake/shoes/shifting -- I have to do this anyway so it's an excellent suggestion using Jagwire and will make the bike 'feel' better. $100
New Crank and Cassette -- These are showing their age so they need to be replaced and I wanted to get a power meter. r7000 front and back and the 4iii $475
Leave the Claris -- although the upgrade to the r7000 is only $30
Shimano HG901 chain -- $50
But wait there's more... I need new pedals -- Look Keo $60

So I am looking at around $800 to service the bike.

So this begs the question... At what point do I just get another used bike that has upgraded components? Whats the break point for a new bike?
2018 Cannondale Synapse with 105's and disc $1000 -- its a gravel but it's still an upgrade from my Giant?
Tough question and there's no right internet answer. ;P

I like the Synapse for a grand, and as an Endurance classed bike it's designed to be a comfortable higher-end road bike. BUT it'll need pedals and the power meter, and (I always) assume cables and pads, so it's more like $1600. Good luck with the choices, and BTW, nice riding in your part of the state.
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Old 02-11-23, 08:20 AM
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The major cost is the crank and power meter .... not sure you will find many bikes with built-in power meters. Sure there are no $1000 new bikes with power meters.

Cassettes and to a much lower degree are consumables. Chains are completely consumables .....

Also, really good (Jagwire compressionless) won't come standard on most bikes, but are worth it (IMO.)

As far as I recall there were two levels of Defy Al frames .... but both were good. Not sure a $1000 new bike will be as good .... However, the Defy might have a max tire width of 28. Worth considering.
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Old 02-11-23, 10:17 AM
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Another thought; instead of pedals plus a power/crankset consider the Assioma Uno pedals that have a power meter. A few beans saved, if they fit the bill.
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Old 02-11-23, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
So this begs the question... At what point do I just get another used bike that has upgraded components? Whats the break point for a new bike?
2018 Cannondale Synapse with 105's and disc $1000 -- its a gravel but it's still an upgrade from my Giant?
My experience buying used bikes is that they almost always need something repaired or replaced soon, even the ones coming from co-ops. Only exception was Pro's Closet, but the price was premium too. If you like the way your bike feels and plan to keep it a long time, upgrade to your heart's content. If you want an excuse to get something newer and/or nicer, sell what you have and get what you want.
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Old 02-11-23, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
Good Morning and thank you all for your thoughtful comments.
To summarize it so far:
New cabling brake/shoes/shifting -- I have to do this anyway so it's an excellent suggestion using Jagwire and will make the bike 'feel' better. $100
New Crank and Cassette -- These are showing their age so they need to be replaced and I wanted to get a power meter. r7000 front and back and the 4iii $475
Leave the Claris -- although the upgrade to the r7000 is only $30
Shimano HG901 chain -- $50
But wait there's more... I need new pedals -- Look Keo $60

So I am looking at around $800 to service the bike.

So this begs the question... At what point do I just get another used bike that has upgraded components? Whats the break point for a new bike?
2018 Cannondale Synapse with 105's and disc $1000 -- its a gravel but it's still an upgrade from my Giant?
If you upgrade, you have new components - think wear items like chain, cassette, crankset, cables, housings and brake pads. If you buy another used bike, you don't really know how worn the components are and you may soon be replacing them anyway.

Unless you just want to add another bike to your stable, I would say upgrade what you have.
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Old 02-11-23, 04:08 PM
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Good point about getting a used bike and having to upgrade worn out components. TY Lombard & Urbanknight

BTinNYC... TY for your comments.... yes... the Hudson Valley is a great place to ride

So... I am of a mind to NOT upgrade the Giant and just trade it in and get what I can get.
The $800 that I would spend on upgrading would be better spent on a new bike... Don't tell my wife YIKES

Now that I/we have arrived at the conclusion of my original posting... I've got $2,500 buring a hole in my pocket.

Whats the best bang for the buck?
Do I go with Canondale synapse w/ Tiagra for $1800 or splurge for the 105 @ $2,050?
Perssonally I'd go with the 105 because its better BUT... how much better?
Will an endurance bike meet my expectations? I felt okay with my Giant, however, I know I can push myself more physically and it's part of the reason to seek an upgrade.

Gravel v Rode???

I've got $2,500... bring it on!!!
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Old 02-11-23, 04:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Spartacvs
Good point about getting a used bike and having to upgrade worn out components. TY Lombard & Urbanknight

BTinNYC... TY for your comments.... yes... the Hudson Valley is a great place to ride

So... I am of a mind to NOT upgrade the Giant and just trade it in and get what I can get.
The $800 that I would spend on upgrading would be better spent on a new bike... Don't tell my wife YIKES

Now that I/we have arrived at the conclusion of my original posting... I've got $2,500 buring a hole in my pocket.

Whats the best bang for the buck?
Do I go with Canondale synapse w/ Tiagra for $1800 or splurge for the 105 @ $2,050?
Perssonally I'd go with the 105 because its better BUT... how much better?
Will an endurance bike meet my expectations? I felt okay with my Giant, however, I know I can push myself more physically and it's part of the reason to seek an upgrade.

Gravel v Rode???

I've got $2,500... bring it on!!!
If it's really only $250 more for 105, I would go for that one. But compare the other components carefully to make sure they didn't cheap out on something else on the more expensive model.

Cannondale Synapse is a good bike and I believe it has room for up to 32mm tires if yoy want to do light gravel riding.
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Old 02-12-23, 05:22 PM
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Great tires are a dynamite upgrade. You could not go wrong with Continental GP5000s in 30mm for a road tire.
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Old 02-12-23, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by BTinNYC
Great tires are a dynamite upgrade. You could not go wrong with Continental GP5000s in 30mm for a road tire.
True, but I'd verify that size fits that frame before spending the $$$. The Defy from that era came with 25's and I believe listed 28mm as the max width, although we know you might be able to fudge that a little.
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Old 02-13-23, 03:17 AM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight
True, but I'd verify that size fits that frame before spending the $$$. The Defy from that era came with 25's and I believe listed 28mm as the max width, although we know you might be able to fudge that a little.
yes. Meant for a Synapse.
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Old 02-13-23, 08:05 AM
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If you have $2500 (or can save up a little more while pondering) then buy a new bike, I'd say.

Your bike was listed on Giant's site as "Defy 5 XL Black/White/Yellow (54102817) CC4K0971"
2x8 Claris, so the 5800 stuff is added. You have the decent, base-level allux frame, not bad but eight years out of date. Not that you Need an upgrade, but if you can get one .... why not?

I would always opt for 105 if I can afford it... even if it is a stretch---because over time the added cash is minimal, and the quality and performance are top-tier. Tiagra and Sora are really good, nowadays .... as good as the good stuff ten years ago, pretty much---but the good stuff nowadays is just bulletproof and flawless. For a bike you might ride another eight years or more, why leave yourself wondering if you would have enjoyed the extra range and feel of 105?

As for which bike you choose---depends. I ended up my with Fuji because the price was ridiculously discounted, the color suited me, and the decals were minimal .... because otherwise it was about the same as all the models from all the manufacturers at that marketing point. When you decide to pull the trigger, compare actually available targets.

I knew a few Synapse riders (not so many after Covid shut down the bike club, and then I got too slow) and none were disappointed. The geometry, as far as I can tell, is basic. standard "endurance" geometry---a little higher stack, a tiny bit shorter reach, and a little less head angle than a "race" bike, with weight a little further back, so riders who don't want to be flat-backed/stretched out all the time can still ride with spirit, and can coast happily home in a more relaxed position when the body wears out five miles from home.

Check max tire clearance. Only difference between gravel and road is wheels and tires pretty much .... the real difference is between mild gravel (38-mm tires) and serious gravel (50-mm 650b.) (Just kidding but pretty much .... ) The better the bike works on gravel the more effort is required to hold speed on pavement ... so decide which is your priority. There is no true "Everything" bike, but you can find frames which can fit a wide range of wheels/tires---if you are really serious, some even have front-dropout swaps to fit 700c and 650b without messing up the handling.

Of course, the more specialized to go, the more you spend and the fewer deals.

And in all bike purchases, I recommend spending as much as you can. I have never regretted later. I have never said, "Wow, I would be happier if this bike wasn't this good." The cost over years of riding is minimal. $350 more is literally less than a dime a day over ten years. Find the bike which has everything you want---for instance, i prefer 105 but don't need Ultegra (I have it on one, for comparison) or Dura-Ace. Also a lot of bikes come with cheap wheels, but for not a lot of money you can get some nice CF wheels from China (always use reputable dealers, not "Hi, I am random guy from Ali Express") which could dramatically change your ride (I did it with my Fuji and am very, very glad did.)

Whatever. We all expect pics of the old and new bikes pretty soon, alright?

Be well.
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Old 02-23-24, 01:42 PM
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Once again back to the thread and thinking about a new bike. Put on a good 1,000 miles last season and Spring is creeping up.
Sadly, I really don't have the cash to spen on a new bike so it'll be upgrades to what I have.
As some have said the ALUXX frame is a good base to work off of. The wheels have seen better days and I'm thinking this is probably the first thing that should get upgraded.
Suggestions Please

The BB is original so this too is going to have to be replaced and I wanted to put on 105's with a shorter crank (165's) anyway.
Is it time to start using a power meter or am I just to old n slow to care

Everything else is 105 so I'm not sure there's really anything else to upgrade, and if thats all their really is what would I be getting if I bought a newer bike?
I suppose disc brakes but I'm not doing any kind of riding that requires them.

As always thank you for your responses.

Matt
Hudson Valley, NY
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Old 02-23-24, 02:05 PM
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I didn't read through all the post that got you to this point. But still the questions for me is what's wrong with the current bike if you can get everything working correctly? And what do you expect upgrades to do for you?

I put all new Shimano 105 5800 group on a 30 plus year old bike and while it taught me a lot, it also taught me that when everything works, new stuff doesn't really change how a bike performs from the old stuff.

You won't easily put disc brakes on that bike if it doesn't have the increased rear spacing or mount points for disc brakes.

If the BB shell is BSA threaded, then you can easily change to a Shimano road crankset with a PM. You mention 4iiii, I use them too. I'm assuming you are wanting to buy a crankset from them with the PM already installed, or are you just getting the single sided PM installed by them for the left crank arm?

Last edited by Iride01; 02-23-24 at 02:18 PM.
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