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Hello Again - Need Some Advice

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Hello Again - Need Some Advice

Old 12-24-17, 11:30 AM
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djlen3
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Hello Again - Need Some Advice

Hi everyone,
I've been here before but it's been a while. I'm an old biker from New Jersey and
have posted here in the past but it's been a long time.
I'm in the market for a road bike and am looking for some advice on which way to go.
I've been a Trek guy for years and really like them but am not thrilled with the components
used in the crank set or the rear cassette. I'm thinking of Cannondale and/or Giant
but also know that how much I spend on the bike will ultimately determine the smoothness
in shifting that I long for.
The price range I'm in is $1000.00 - 1200.00. That's pretty much the most I can afford. So
I'd like some feed back on which of the three, or possibly a different make entirely.
Any feed back would be appreciated. I've been saving my money and ready to buy.

Regards,
Len
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Old 12-24-17, 11:44 AM
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cb400bill
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Welcome back to Bike Forums.
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Old 12-24-17, 03:05 PM
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CliffordK
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Hello, and welcome back.

If Bill suggests starting a new thread, then go ahead and do it.

Meanwhile, I'm surprised you're finding a big difference between brands.

$800 to $1200 or so is a tough price range. You start finding advanced features such as Carbon Fiber frames and/or forks. Perhaps Shimano Tiagra to Ultegra depending on the build. But, bike manufacturers make compromises, so they may use a lesser known 3rd party crankset, or other parts that less obvious.

It is, however, quite possible that a lesser known crankset will shift just as well as Shimano Ultegra or Campy Chorus.

Keep in mind, for maintenance, and upgrades, end users often use non big-name chainrings which often work just fine. Actually, I have chosen not to buy any 4-bolt cranks/rings, and have been quite happy with more commonly supported, non-proprietary 5-bolt rings.

Cassettes are high wear items, and are frequently downgraded, so you may buy a bike that is 100% Shimano Ultegra, but with a Shimano 105 cassette. And, really, it won't make much difference. 5000 miles down the road, and it is likely time to dump the old one, and choose your "dream cassette".

Also, keep in mind the used market. It is not uncommon to find used bikes at less than half the new price. Or, you can think of it as $1000 will buy you the equivalent of a $2000 new bike. However, with the shift from 10s to 11s, you'll find quite a few more 10s used bikes and components. However, that is also rapidly changing. Used is best if you have the skills to evaluate a bike before purchase, and do your maintenance.
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Old 12-24-17, 05:04 PM
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Nevermind posting a new thread.

Thread moved from Introductions forum to Road Cycling forum.
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Old 12-24-17, 05:10 PM
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First thing U would ask is what are u g going to be doing with the bike, reason I ask is I recently bought a Casati used for great price, but it's a road racing bike and really I'm older now and I think I really want is a touring bike so that's why I'm making this comment..lol.. Just saying..
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Old 12-24-17, 06:23 PM
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Definitely give Scott bikes a look.
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Old 12-24-17, 07:24 PM
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Giant Contend 1 is good value:
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/us/bikes-contend

Visit your LBS. It's possible to get a aluminum frame with carbon fork, and possibly 105 11-speed, but probably Tiagra 10-speed in your price range.
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Old 12-24-17, 07:52 PM
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Thank you for the replies. I'm intending to do group touring on my new bike. The club I'm in does rides ranging from 20 - 60 miles in the B and C class. I'm slipping from the solid B's to the C's or C+ sadly.
A problem in my area is that the bike shops pretty much limit one's options to two or three makes per shop. I will definitely be test riding before buying this time around because smooth shifting is all important to me.

Regards,
Len
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Old 12-24-17, 07:53 PM
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I would look for a deal on a Caad12. I have seen them under $1200. That gets you 105 Shimano on a great frame.
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Old 12-24-17, 08:12 PM
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IME Giant provides the best bang for the buck and makes a truly excellent bike. Don’t worry too much if you must accept third party crank and/or brake calipers. They will work fine, but could also easily be replaced for a couple of hundred dollars when you find you can afford that. Fit is your most important concern.
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Old 12-24-17, 08:33 PM
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If “smooth shifting” is really what you seek, get the best drivetrain you can afford and, more importantly, learn how to maintain/adjust it.
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Old 12-24-17, 09:54 PM
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I have a bike with a 105 drive train but an FSA cranks/chainrings. I can't tell. Shifts when I move the lever, just like my all-Shimano bikes. I think one reason manufacturers use house cranksets is that the design is basically so simply it is foolproof---easy tio save some money without compromising performance (or infringing copyrights.)

If you stick with Shimano for everything else, you will pretty much Know that if it isn't shifting smoothly, it is adjustment, not hardware.

That said, nothing stay adjusted forever. If "smooth shifting" is what you crave, there are a ton of internet videos about setting up and indexing derailleurs.

I am pretty sure any brand will work well if it is set up right and kept in tune.

I liked the Giant Defy/Contend line, but I am pretty sure the Contends do Not have rack mounts (even more sure the CF Defys don't.) I don't know if you are doing loaded touring or supported touring so maybe you don't need a rack and panniers and four bottles. if you do, that will determine which bikes make the short list ... and it will be a short list.

As Mr. Penmanparker notes, upgrades are easy and relatively cheap. If you see a really nice bike in your price range with some house-brand parts, give it a try. If after a while you aren't thrilled, upgrade.

I have a couple bikes with Tektro brakes (stock) in back and Tiagra (4600, 4700) up front and they stop superbly. The softer Tektros are perfect in the back, and Tiagras are just wonderful. They are clamps, not brakes. I think $70 for both bikes.

I have picked up Tiagra cranksets, used and NOS, for really cheap.

But mostly, because there is so much competition, you would be hard-pressed to find a bike nowadays which didn't perform pretty well with any sort of components. Even bottom-of-the-line Shimano stuff is decent. Tiagra and 105 are excellent.
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Old 12-25-17, 08:14 AM
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Any chance someone in the group you ride with is looking to upgrade? A few years ago a friend in my club sold me a Guru Sidero (steel) w/SRAM and Ksyrium wheels for $1200. It had been ridden about 6 times and originally cost $3500. I've upgraded it to SRAM Red over the years and it now weighs a little more than 17 lbs.
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Old 12-25-17, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Hapsmo911 View Post
I would look for a deal on a Caad12. I have seen them under $1200. That gets you 105 Shimano on a great frame.
https://www.trekbicyclesuperstore.co...5-277923-1.htm
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Old 01-02-18, 08:49 AM
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I bought an '18 Trek Emonda ALR 5 50. It has everything I wanted on my new bike and more.
I had to order it, but that's OK. I wouldn't have ridden it until at least March anyway.
Really excited. I think this bike, with it's gearing it will be the smoothest shifting bike I've ever had.

Regards,
Len
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Old 01-03-18, 03:30 PM
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You can get a nice bike for you price range. Go to a local shop and see what they have. As others said, components all work pretty well. Get a good fit as that is what is most important.
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Old 01-03-18, 05:14 PM
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Good choice. Post some pictures when you get it.
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Old 01-03-18, 07:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Shuffleman View Post
You can get a nice bike for you price range. Go to a local shop and see what they have. As others said, components all work pretty well. Get a good fit as that is what is most important.
I have dealt with the same shop for close to 20 years and they are very good about fitting the person to the
bike. They've always done right by me.

Regards,
Len
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