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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 05-06-15, 10:11 AM   #1
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Century Bike Opinions

What are opinions on what makes a good century bike? Is it marketing hype or do the endurance geometry frames seriously benefit longer rides vs. just whatever the lightest and most aero bike you can afford will do for cutting your time? I'm speaking in terms of consideration of climbing hills, etc. as well.

I'm looking at a few different carbon bike options that might benefit ride comfort over my aluminum bike possibly and maybe a little lighter to help with climbs.

I personally do seem to occasionally notice a strain on my neck even with my endurance geometry Cannondale Synapse after several hours in the saddle in pursuit of a century. I see the reference of htfu used in the road bike forum and maybe that's something to consider.
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Old 05-07-15, 06:31 AM   #2
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I wanted to tag along on this question of FastFwd01's. Looking for a new road "Endurance" bike and will ride 15 to 100 miles. I also have looked at the Synapse. My price range is 1 to 2K. What brands would would someone recommend and and is the "Endurance Relaxed" frame any advantage.
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Old 05-07-15, 06:41 AM   #3
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I went from a 2000 Trek 5200 to a 2010 Giant Defy Advance. Both have carbon fiber frames. The Trek was more race oriented while the Giant is more of an endurance bike. I find that the more relaxed Giant is easier on my neck and a nicer ride. It has bigger headset and bottom bracket bearings which seems to me to make it stiffer when getting out of the saddle and really hammering yet nice and smooth when just cruising.

While I'm sure that some of the 'plush' and 'endurance' bike stuff is just marketing, I'm sure that there are benefits to such a bike.
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Old 05-07-15, 06:48 AM   #4
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In my experience, the most important factors are getting the features and fit that you need. Start with a frame approximately the right size, and change the stem, handlebar, seat, crank arms, whatever it takes, until you are sitting on it just right; change the gearing to suit your needs; and add racks, fenders, dynamo lights, whatever you need.

If there's money left over, get better tires.

Those are the important things. The weight of a frame isn't that important, as long as it will support the appropriate build. Make sure it accepts wider tires than you expect to need. Make sure it has eyelets for fenders and racks.

I don't generally trust a bike shop to sell you the bike best suited for your needs; their intention may be to sell you the bike they have on hand.
I put new leather on ruined saddles like Brooks, etc. You can reach me by private message.
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Old 05-07-15, 05:44 PM   #5
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What are opinions on what makes a good century bike?
The legs between the pedals.

Nobody needs eyelets to ride a century.

Good fit is important but so is a strong core.

Endurance bikes are marketing hype to some extent. They are pretty fast and can be more comfortable than a racing bike. Until recently I could not ride a real racing bike because my thighs would hit my gut on every pedal stroke and my upper body weight was too much to support. Endurance type bikes are more sit up and beg in turns of position compared to a road bike.

Want to ride a fast century? Put fast tires on on ANY well maintained rig. Vittoria CX or Continential 4000 si in 25mm or 28mm, respectively
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Old 05-07-15, 09:45 PM   #6
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A century bike isn't so different than any other bike because the two major considerations are the same. 1. Is it comfortable ? And 2. Is it efficient?
Comfort is important because if you're agonizing over a bad seat or wrong sized frame you'll never complete the ride.
Efficiency is important because if you're wasting all your effort just trying to make the bike go you won't have any energy left to put down the miles.
After that it's just personal preference.
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