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Can you really ride a Domane as fast as a race bike?

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Can you really ride a Domane as fast as a race bike?

Old 08-12-15, 05:52 PM
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bigcicero
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Can you really ride a Domane as fast as a race bike?

Okay, so I have a question for someone more experienced than me. I'm looking around at new bikes, and I keep asking myself the same question. I've read all the marketing lingo about the Domane and the Roubaix. (But let's focus on the Domane to make this simple.) All the marketing, promotional stuff, and reviews say you can ride the Domane as fast as any other race bike. I can understand if they're talking about a 50+ mile ride, where fatigue may slow a rider over distance on a less comfortable bike.

--> But what about sprints, or 10-20 mile rides where fatigue isn't the defining factor? Is the claim still true?

Given how high the head tubes are, all things being equal the aero drag will be much greater on a Domane than a regular road racer, like a Madone H1, and I bet it would be more fatiguing to keep yourself in a lower aero position on the Domane than the Madone, where the fit is naturally low with longer reach. I realize that you can ride ANY bike faster if you can put down more power, but my question is about comparing the same rider on different bikes.

Curious to hear how much of the marketing buzz is true. Thanks!
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Old 08-12-15, 06:05 PM
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Of course it will make you go faster.

On a side note, I am selling an all-natural herbal product which is guaranteed to be 3 times more effective than Viagra. Interested?
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Old 08-12-15, 06:07 PM
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Really unless you are a top pro it's more about the engine then the bike. A couple of guys I ride with are on Roubaix an they certainly are faster than I am on my Emonda.
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Old 08-12-15, 06:08 PM
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There is a guy I follow on Strava that has a Roubaix S Works and he regularly does 50 mile rides with approx 3000 feet of climbing and averages 17 mph. And he's probably in his late 50s and that's on solo rides. So if you are a strong rider a "fast" endurance bike shouldn't slow you down and I'm sure there are people that benefit from them and are faster than they would be on a more aggressive bike.
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Old 08-12-15, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclistca View Post
Really unless you are a top pro it's more about the engine then the bike. A couple of guys I ride with are on Roubaix an they certainly are faster than I am on my Emonda.

Makes sense. What about for the same rider?

For example, with my stem up vs slammed on my only bike I gain an extra roughly 1.2 - 1.5 mph in speed with the same perceived effort in the same gear just from aerodynamic advantage.
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Old 08-12-15, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by geehue View Post
Of course it will make you go faster.

On a side note, I am selling an all-natural herbal product which is guaranteed to be 3 times more effective than Viagra. Interested?
Am I interested? Extremely.
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Old 08-12-15, 06:21 PM
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Incidentally, I figured I knew the answer to the question. However, I was curious to hear others' opinions.
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Old 08-12-15, 06:23 PM
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Ask Spartacus. It does not appear to be holding him back
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Old 08-12-15, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
Ask Spartacus. It does not appear to be holding him back
this
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Old 08-12-15, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
Ask Spartacus. It does not appear to be holding him back

I get it, but Cancellera rides a custom Domane in the classics, which has an "H1" fit or more aggressive. It has the same IsoSpeed decoupler, but it doesn't have the same geometry as the normal Domane the rest of us ride. (With one exception, which is that there is a higher-end version called the Domane Classics Edition with a "pro" fit that is probably similar to his.) His bike is inevitably going to be quicker, as his bike's fit will yield a more aero position than the upright position the rest of the Domanes share.

My question really was a scientific inquiry and I should have worded it differently: what is the average speed delta between a Madone and a Domane for the same 6' tall rider who can apply 230 Watt FTP over the same flat course over, say, 30 minutes, where long-term fatigue is not a variable? There WILL be a delta due to the aerodynamic differences inherent in an upright vs a low position.

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Old 08-12-15, 07:12 PM
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^ so, his frame tends to set up with a lower position.

I'm willing to bet that the vast majority of people can set up an off the rack Domane as aero as they need to be, or can handle, with the right stem, frame size, spacers.

So if you actually "get it". the answer to your question is simple: given the geometry, most notably head tube length, can I fit on a Domane with the amount of seat to bar drop I need?

If the answer is yes, then yes, if its no (which I doubt) then no.

The answer is found in actually swinging a leg over the top tube.
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Old 08-12-15, 07:37 PM
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actually, for the OP, it isn't going to make a perceptible difference.
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Old 08-12-15, 07:47 PM
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There are always ways to get lower. Like run a -17 (If you need lower, Syntace, FSA, Deda all have stems that go lower), run a traditional bend bar where there is a deeper drop and the hoods sit lower on the bar, or even go one size down on the frame.
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Old 08-12-15, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by bigcicero View Post

For example, with my stem up vs slammed on my only bike I gain an extra roughly 1.2 - 1.5 mph in speed with the same perceived effort in the same gear just from aerodynamic advantage.
At what speed do you notice this?
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Old 08-12-15, 08:19 PM
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A Domane is a race bike, so there's that.
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Old 08-12-15, 08:25 PM
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I own both a Domane Project 1 - Di2 Ultegra and a Emonda SLR Di2 DA. Both run same Continental 4000s11 x25 aired up to 95 on front and 105 on rear. Wheels are different, Domane has Bontragger RXLTLR and Emonda has DA C35. Emonda is 3.5 #'s lighter. I have cross checked all my Garmin data as I ride both bikes frequently averaging 400 to 500 kms per week. My average speed remains the same on both bikes with no noticeable difference. For sure the lighter bike is quicker on the climbs but my average week would see 1500 to 2000 ft of climbing, flat land here. That is best example I can give you that the Domane is not slower by design.
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Old 08-12-15, 08:49 PM
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Originally Posted by bigcicero View Post
I get it, but Cancellera rides a custom Domane in the classics, which has an "H1" fit or more aggressive. It has the same IsoSpeed decoupler, but it doesn't have the same geometry as the normal Domane the rest of us ride. (With one exception, which is that there is a higher-end version called the Domane Classics Edition with a "pro" fit that is probably similar to his.) His bike is inevitably going to be quicker, as his bike's fit will yield a more aero position than the upright position the rest of the Domanes share.

My question really was a scientific inquiry and I should have worded it differently: what is the average speed delta between a Madone and a Domane for the same 6' tall rider who can apply 230 Watt FTP over the same flat course over, say, 30 minutes, where long-term fatigue is not a variable? There WILL be a delta due to the aerodynamic differences inherent in an upright vs a low position.
So really this boils down to how much H1 vs H2 geometry affects things (so head tube height, not really Domane vs. Madone necessarily). Assuming the same stack height and stem, how much of a difference is there between H1 and H2, height-wise? It's probably less than the difference between riding on the hoods vs drops on any other road bike as far as body positioning goes. You can probably find an analytical tool to estimate the difference in speed for a given effort, it's probably quite small (less than .2 or .3 MPH).
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Old 08-12-15, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Dan333SP View Post
So really this boils down to how much H1 vs H2 geometry affects things (so head tube height, not really Domane vs. Madone necessarily). Assuming the same stack height and stem, how much of a difference is there between H1 and H2, height-wise? It's probably less than the difference between riding on the hoods vs drops on any other road bike as far as body positioning goes. You can probably find an analytical tool to estimate the difference in speed for a given effort, it's probably quite small (less than .2 or .3 MPH).
There is stack and reach of the frame, and then there is drop and reach of the complete bike. What others were saying is that similar aize frames intended for different applications with different stack and reach (but close as in Emonda and Domane) can usually be run with the same drop from saddle to bar and reach from saddle to bar as finished bikes. It is just a matter of stem and spacer choices. Often the endurance frame has other attributes besides stack and reach that make it more comfy over the long haul such as elastomeric couplings between the rear triangle and main frame. Those won't slow your down in a sprint, but will make the long ride more comfy. So an endurance bike set up more aggressvely can be a very good all purpose solution.
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Old 08-12-15, 10:24 PM
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Horses for courses. If you want to do crits, get a crit bike. if you want to do long road races, the possibilities expand.
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Old 08-13-15, 04:15 AM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
Ask Spartacus. It does not appear to be holding him back
I was waiting for someone to mention what exactly came to mind when I read the OP's question. No surprise you got it Merlin.
The Domane and not the Madone was Cancellara's only race bike. Endurance all the time.
For the vast majority of riders who are low CAT or pro's an endurance geometry will be faster and more comfortable with less fatigue later into the ride. I have two older CAT2 friends that are on Roubaixs. Its about the rider and his/her preference.
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Old 08-13-15, 04:19 AM
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Originally Posted by rpenmanparker View Post
There is stack and reach of the frame, and then there is drop and reach of the complete bike. What others were saying is that similar aize frames intended for different applications with different stack and reach (but close as in Emonda and Domane) can usually be run with the same drop from saddle to bar and reach from saddle to bar as finished bikes. It is just a matter of stem and spacer choices. Often the endurance frame has other attributes besides stack and reach that make it more comfy over the long haul such as elastomeric couplings between the rear triangle and main frame. Those won't slow your down in a sprint, but will make the long ride more comfy. So an endurance bike set up more aggressvely can be a very good all purpose solution.
In bold is often lost on many as you correctly write Robert. But is just isn't mechanical like elastomers, suspension pivots or suspension seatposts. Its about the wheelbase and angles of the frame that give it its compliancy. An often lost fact is with careful frame selection a rider can typically ride very slammed on an endurance bike like a crit bike if that is the goal...but still have the benefit of relaxed frameset angles that make the frame more stable and ride better over rough surfaces.

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Old 08-13-15, 04:30 AM
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All that matters is you body position on the bike. If you ride with your elbows locked and arms straight, then a higher hand position - from stack, spacers, stem, bars, ergo position - will translate into a more upright position, more drag, and less speed.

If like most people you can bend your elbows and lean forward, you'll be able to reach a similar position on almost any road bike that fits you, and will thus be able to reach the same speed.

Comfort has been shown to depend mosty on tire quality and pressure, with frame compliance being only a very small factor.
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Old 08-13-15, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by bigcicero View Post
Makes sense. What about for the same rider?

For example, with my stem up vs slammed on my only bike I gain an extra roughly 1.2 - 1.5 mph in speed with the same perceived effort in the same gear just from aerodynamic advantage.
Are you sure its tgat big a difference? When you say up, does it have you sitting bolt upright or something That big a difference would be more likely due to position allowing different muscle use than aero differences.
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Old 08-13-15, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Marin View Post
All that matters is you body position on the bike. If you ride with your elbows locked and arms straight, then a higher hand position - from stack, spacers, stem, bars, ergo position - will translate into a more upright position, more drag, and less speed.

If like most people you can bend your elbows and lean forward, you'll be able to reach a similar position on almost any road bike that fits you, and will thus be able to reach the same speed.

Comfort has been shown to depend mosty on tire quality and pressure, with frame compliance being only a very small factor.
In bold begs a whole other philosophical debate. There is a pretty large difference in feel between even endurance bikes let alone difference in ride ride quality between full race and endurance geometry...because of design targets of the mfr. Tuning tire pressure should NEVER be based upon ride quality. Tire pressure should be optimized based upon rider weight, adhesion for cornering, lack of pinch flatting and predominantly SPEED. How is maximum speed achieved? By minimizing tire deflection based upon riding surface. Why do classics riders at the pro level ride on 30c tires at 80 psi over cobble races? Because they are faster than 23c at 115 psi. 30c tires are faster because they absorb vertical road disturbances without blunting forward momentum per a given energy input. By contrast 23c tires at higher pressure are faster on smoother surfaces without weight penalty and tire deflection of lower psi and wider tires. Ride quality is inciental. Objective should always be lack of energy loss due to minimum tire deflection aka SPEED. So the priority should always be to choose the frame with the compliancy/ ride quality and handling a rider prefers. Tuning tire size and pressure for ride quality on a road bike is the wrong priority. When it comes to road bikes, you can have your cake and eat it too. On my Roubaix I ride 23c tires at 115 psi. Why? Because the frame mutes any harshness due to this tire/pressure combo.

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Old 08-13-15, 06:48 AM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
Ask Spartacus. It does not appear to be holding him back
Exactly.
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