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2013 Synapse or Unused 2007 Roubaix? First Road Bike.

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

2013 Synapse or Unused 2007 Roubaix? First Road Bike.

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Old 01-10-19, 02:09 PM
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coffeeaddictx
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2013 Synapse or Unused 2007 Roubaix? First Road Bike.

This will be my first road bike. Which of these would be a better choice? I'm trying to decide between a 2013 Cannondale Women's 56cm Synapse Double with Sora components aluminum with carbon forks versus a 2007 New/Unused Specialized Roubaix 105 groupset Triple with aluminum and carbon forks.

Both bikes are around $400. I'm a female with a 32" inseam... both of the bikes do seem to fit well for my size and are very comfortable. Thanks in advance!
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Old 01-10-19, 02:42 PM
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If they both fit, which do you like the look of more? Dead serious- that absolutely should be a consideration.

Assuming there isnt a lot of wear on the Cdale, the components on both are perfectly good but nothing to base a decision on(in my opinion) due to them being older generations. The Sora will be 3500 model, so the current 2 paddle style which is better than older style Sora shifters.
Both will have external cable shifting.
I would prefer a compact 2x9 drivetrain over a 3x9 wide range drivetrain which would mean the Cdale.
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Old 01-10-19, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
If they both fit, which do you like the look of more? Dead serious- that absolutely should be a consideration.

Assuming there isnt a lot of wear on the Cdale, the components on both are perfectly good but nothing to base a decision on(in my opinion) due to them being older generations. The Sora will be 3500 model, so the current 2 paddle style which is better than older style Sora shifters.
Both will have external cable shifting.
I would prefer a compact 2x9 drivetrain over a 3x9 wide range drivetrain which would mean the Cdale.
I actually prefer the color of the Roubaix. The Cannondale is black with bright pink. Even though I am a female, I'm not a fan of pink. I was planning to cover the pink with some black vinyl or tape if I could get it to look decent. The Cdale has moderate wear. The Roubaix has been sitting in a box since 2007.
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Old 01-11-19, 04:17 AM
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Hi,
Cannondale Synapse hands down. Pretty much a jump ball between companies. Specialized somewhat invented the category of endurance bikes but most familiar with the industry know they took carbon fiber and rebranded what are considered sportive bikes...the genre being around for many decades.

That said, Cannondale is a hellofa brand. I own a 2011 Roubaix SL3 btw. Specialized took the Roubaix to another level with the SL3 and earlier variants were softer and less performance oriented.

By 2013 Cannondale had evolved the Synapse up around the top of the food chain for endurance roadbikes. Generally if sticking with name brand bikes which I always do for several reasons...notably support for misc. parts and reputation for reliability and undeniable DNA you can feel when riding, newer is better. The bike industry evolved a far amount between '07 and '13.

Good luck with your purchase. Most important element of any bike purchase is fit.
I presume you are quite tall with 32" inseam. Also matters how you measure your inseam...if this is your pant inseam or what is called cycling inseam.

If you tell us your height and more detail about inseam, I can provide a best bike size suggestion. You mentioned moderate wear on the Cannondale. For me, this maybe a show stopper. New '07 Roubaix in a box is ok but why not find something hardly ridden off Craigslist at a big discount? Also look on ebay.

Good luck.

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Old 01-11-19, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Campag4life View Post
Specialized somewhat invented the category of endurance bikes...
Originally Posted by Campag4life View Post
...but most familiar with the industry know they took carbon fiber and rebranded what are considered sportive bikes...the genre being around for many decades..
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Old 01-11-19, 01:42 PM
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If you wanted some lower gears for the hills, the roubaix makes a lot more sense. I think 5700 series 105 components were quite good and I have a tricross from that era that is still going strong with that groupset on it. Between the two bikes for the same price I'd go with the unused one rather than buying something new and worn, you'll likely be replacing parts on the C'dale if the chain is worn or whatever else.
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Old 01-11-19, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Campag4life View Post
Hi,
Cannondale Synapse hands down. Pretty much a jump ball between companies. Specialized somewhat invented the category of endurance bikes but most familiar with the industry know they took carbon fiber and rebranded what are considered sportive bikes...the genre being around for many decades.

That said, Cannondale is a hellofa brand. I own a 2011 Roubaix SL3 btw. Specialized took the Roubaix to another level with the SL3 and earlier variants were softer and less performance oriented.

By 2013 Cannondale had evolved the Synapse up around the top of the food chain for endurance roadbikes. Generally if sticking with name brand bikes which I always do for several reasons...notably support for misc. parts and reputation for reliability and undeniable DNA you can feel when riding, newer is better. The bike industry evolved a far amount between '07 and '13.

Good luck with your purchase. Most important element of any bike purchase is fit.
I presume you are quite tall with 32" inseam. Also matters how you measure your inseam...if this is your pant inseam or what is called cycling inseam.

If you tell us your height and more detail about inseam, I can provide a best bike size suggestion. You mentioned moderate wear on the Cannondale. For me, this maybe a show stopper. New '07 Roubaix in a box is ok but why not find something hardly ridden off Craigslist at a big discount? Also look on ebay.

Good luck.
This really helps. Thank you! I'm 5'8" with a 32" cycling inseam. Not sure if weight matters. I'm about 135. I'm hoping this bike will serve me well for a year or two. I didn't want to go too crazy on my purchase price and then wreck the bike since I'm still learning. I do plan to get a newer bike, carbon with a slightly better groupset within a few years.
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Old 01-11-19, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by coffeeaddictx View Post
This really helps. Thank you! I'm 5'8" with a 32" cycling inseam. Not sure if weight matters. I'm about 135. I'm hoping this bike will serve me well for a year or two. I didn't want to go too crazy on my purchase price and then wreck the bike since I'm still learning. I do plan to get a newer bike, carbon with a slightly better groupset within a few years.
You are welcome. I thought that may have been pant inseam and you are super tall. You merely tallish with longish legs. Btw, your weight is good for your height.
I am 6'1" with 35.25" cycling inseam and ride a 58cm Roubaix as one of my bikes...but 58 is a pretty common size for me. Pretty much a sweet spot.

For you...54 would be a bit too racey and I would advise a 56cm to satisfy your inseam so you don't have too much saddle to bar drop. You can tune horizontal reach with stem length.

Keep in mind, most Roubaix and Synapse are endurance geometry with tallish head tubes and if you are uber fit and maybe consider more performance oriented riding, you can also ride a more race fit bike like a Tarmac or Giant TCR...also Emonda is a nice bike with not too aggressive position. I have a male friend I built an Emonda 56cm with H2 geometry who is your exact height and inseam and he loves it.

I would like to suggest based upon what you have written, don't rule out Aluminum and new. For $1300 or so, you can get a Specialized Allez with 105. I have one for light touring and it is an astounding value and really all the bike you would into the imminent future.

But if you are looking in the $500-$800 range, Craiglist is your friend, stick with name brand and low mileage and new as possible. Aluminum is a good road bike frame material.
If you know someone that can guide you locally you trust...somebody really into cycling, now is the time to lean on that person...maybe ask them to come along and look at what you are considering you may find on line. You will pay more at the bike shop but they perform a great service.

Good luck. Brand, age, mileage and SIZE is most important. Fit is almost everything when it comes to bikes.

Last edited by Campag4life; 01-11-19 at 03:04 PM.
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Old 01-18-19, 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Campag4life View Post
You are welcome. I thought that may have been pant inseam and you are super tall. You merely tallish with longish legs. Btw, your weight is good for your height.
I am 6'1" with 35.25" cycling inseam and ride a 58cm Roubaix as one of my bikes...but 58 is a pretty common size for me. Pretty much a sweet spot.

For you...54 would be a bit too racey and I would advise a 56cm to satisfy your inseam so you don't have too much saddle to bar drop. You can tune horizontal reach with stem length.

Keep in mind, most Roubaix and Synapse are endurance geometry with tallish head tubes and if you are uber fit and maybe consider more performance oriented riding, you can also ride a more race fit bike like a Tarmac or Giant TCR...also Emonda is a nice bike with not too aggressive position. I have a male friend I built an Emonda 56cm with H2 geometry who is your exact height and inseam and he loves it.

I would like to suggest based upon what you have written, don't rule out Aluminum and new. For $1300 or so, you can get a Specialized Allez with 105. I have one for light touring and it is an astounding value and really all the bike you would into the imminent future.

But if you are looking in the $500-$800 range, Craiglist is your friend, stick with name brand and low mileage and new as possible. Aluminum is a good road bike frame material.
If you know someone that can guide you locally you trust...somebody really into cycling, now is the time to lean on that person...maybe ask them to come along and look at what you are considering you may find on line. You will pay more at the bike shop but they perform a great service.

Good luck. Brand, age, mileage and SIZE is most important. Fit is almost everything when it comes to bikes.
I ended up going with the Cannondale. Thanks again for all the advice! 56cm feels perfect on the Synapse. The Roubaix was comfortable as well but seemed to have been ridden hard. I do love the look of the race style bikes like the Tarmac and the SuperSix Evo. Just don't think I could handle a racey/aero type bike right now, but maybe in a couple years as I get stronger at cycling. This Cdale seems like a perfect first road bike. Couldn't be happier.
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Old 01-19-19, 04:24 AM
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Cool coffeeaddictx….having my first cup now.

I believe you chose the right bike and smoking deal...you mentioned around $400.

Truthfully, I own endurance bikes or bikes with geometry toward that side of the spectrum in terms of fit and IMO and I have been at this a long time, the average cyclist would be almost universally best served on an endurance fit. Really the only way to ride a real aggressive fit bike is with great intensity to keep more weight off the hands.

If you aren't race fit or ride that way having a higher handlebar for all of us will be more comfortable. The Synapse is a great bike and new is better and I am a fan of the Roubaix owning one.

No doubt you will really enjoy it. Keep in mind you don't have to replace the whole bike to upgrade it. You can replace the components piece meal as you like.

Ride safe and often.
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