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Why shouldn't I buy this Trek UPS OCLV bike? Timtak Capitulates

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Why shouldn't I buy this Trek UPS OCLV bike? Timtak Capitulates

Old 06-06-22, 05:22 AM
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Bikes: Trek Madone 5.2 SL 2007, Look KG386, R022 Re-framed Azzurri Primo, Felt Z5, Trek F7.3 FX

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I bought for about 400USD an aluminium and carbon bespoke bike made by a Japanese LBS, with a horizontal top tube but it has quite a long, 14cm head tube so the ride, even when slammed using the road bike bars would not be all that aggressive, and it is a bit heavy. It my son doesn't want it then I will sell it.
Roman aluminum and carbon road bike
Then I managed to get a Trek Madone SL 5.2 from 2006, the last (?) Lance Armstrong geometry with 10s Ultegra & DuraAce components for less than 400USD delivered (yet to arrive). It has almost no head tube. The down tube and top tube meet. It weighs 7.61 Kg. It is "chilli red."

Thank you God!

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Old 06-06-22, 06:33 AM
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Bikes: Cannondale - Gary Fisher - Giant - Litespeed - Schwinn Paramount - Schwinn (lugged steel) - Trek OCLV

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Originally Posted by timtak
I need to try an aluminium bike. I can get them for about the same sort of money as the Trek 5200 or a bit less. I can't remember steel to be honest but changing from a heavy Trek F7.3 cross bike to a carbon (Azzuri Primo > Felt Z5 > Look KG 386) was a big difference to me. One of the reviews of the Trek 5200 by bikerx68 says

"I absolutely love the carbon frame for the chip and seal roads in Western PA. The carbon frame removes all of the harshness from the ride and still has the stiffness of aluminum. I came from riding an all aluminum Cannondale and I can't believe the difference in ride quality."

And I felt the same way. But here is my cracked carbon

Cracked Seatpost Repair Attempt by Timothy Takemoto, on Flickr

Cracked Carbon Frame by Timothy Takemoto, on Flickr

The price of the Trek is still 73000 JPY including postage within Japan or 590 USD and I don't think the Trek is ugly, though I prefer my yellow Look.
I have a first gen Trek OCLV 5200 - 52 cm size

got it at a significant discount when Trek was clearing out overstocked small size 5200's (the next year)

I also had 53 cm Cannondale R400 (3.0 frame) and R800 (2.8 frame) and a vintage lugged steel Schwinn Peloton (Columbus SL / SP tube mix) ... still have the 3.0 frame and the Peloton

put a lot of miles on all four bikes - and most of the miles were on (bad) western PA roads

the bikes were set up more-or-less the same

the ride was fairly similar

I could notice differences in tires (etc) more than the ride difference from the frame material

Last edited by t2p; 06-06-22 at 06:38 AM.
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Old 06-06-22, 02:36 PM
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My experience of aluminium bikes is that they look like road bikes, and local bike shops make a lot of money by selling them, but they are unpleasant to use unless you are very light and are prepared to sacrifice yourself for the stiffness and crash proofness that they provide. My aluminium bike had bigger tyres I agree with the reviewer I quoted.

From the Madone 5.2 SL 2007 review at
Nate says
I bought a '06 a few months ago and I have put well over 1,000 miles on it. I'm primarily a mountain biker and I train quite a bit on my road bike for my mtn bike races. This bike is light, fast, and smooth. My average speed automatically increased by 1-2 mph's on this bike. It soaks up road vibration great and seems to glide along the road as if it's almost floating. That's not to say the road feel is diminished. You still feel everything, it's just softer. Acceleration isn't quite as quick as my all aluminum, stiff-as-a-board cannondale, but most bikes aren't. C-dales are known for their stiffness. Overall, I'm very pleased with this bike. My first impression was "I can ride this all day long." The C-dale fatigues your body from all the constant vibration.

Anonymous March 7 2005 says
As for the age old debate of comparing carbon frames with metal ones (steel, aluminum, titanium, magnesium. etc.), I have one thing to say, well..maybe a lot. Carbon just absorbs vibration better than steel, aluminum,etc. PERIOD! With this bike, you do not feel that constant zing vibration in your a** all day. Maybe if you are an old school rider like my dad, you wouldn't like that "numb" feeling on a carbon bike but who in the world wants to have a beat up and sore butt at the end of the day? I'm pretty sure that I'm not one of 'em.

Hozomean says
all I can say is WOW. This bike is firm and stable. Climbs as quickly as my legs will push it and descends with surety. I went Project One, and the finish was flawless. Compared to my old aluminum bike, this is like riding on a stick of butter.

The frame on my bike above cracked because I was bashing it with a slide hammer, to remove the stuck seat post. I still intend to patch the frame, and use the broken seat post to rearwardly offset the saddle.

I also find that local bike shops disparage the durability of carbon,in part so that they can sell their aluminium bone rattlers. A colleague on my corridor was sold a aluminium lump believing that since he is a beginner, and likely to crash, a carbon frame would break. I rode that frame for about 80,000 km and crashed it more times than I remember.

All the FUD about carbon bikes has an upside, however, because, as a result, I can purchase old carbon bikes at bargain prices.

It has arrived!

Metalic Chili by Timothy Takemoto, on Flickr
I will try the aluminium carbon hybrid before I sell it.

And I did put an upside down quill stem on it.

by Timothy Takemoto, on Flickr

Last edited by timtak; 09-02-22 at 03:57 PM. Reason: The upside of carbon fud. Pic of the Trek. Another picture of the Trek
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