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Road Cycling ďIt 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.Ē -- Ernest Hemingway

1st Bike

Old 08-03-20, 07:49 PM
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semax10
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1st Bike

I'm trying to get my first road bike and trying to decide between the trek emonda and the domane. I'd get them with the 105 group set but aside from that I really don't know which to select. Which would be the better bike and why?
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Old 08-03-20, 07:56 PM
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I own a Emonda and rented a Domane while on vacation.

The Domane has a bit more relaxed fit.

So it depends on you level of fitness and flexibility.

Either one is a great bike.
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Old 08-03-20, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
I own a Emonda and rented a Domane while on vacation.

The Domane has a bit more relaxed fit.

So it depends on you level of fitness and flexibility.

Either one is a great bike.
Thanks. I believe I'm fit. Avid runner trying to add in some long distance rides.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:14 PM
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Then get the Emonda.. it's killer ride. Mine is a 2015 SLR and the new 2021 just came out.

I personally think the SL with Ultegra is the best bang for the buck. But 105 is a good choice and a bit less expensive.

I'm a old fat man and been cranking out 150 miles a week on mine. Just takes a bit to get your "fit" dialed in.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:14 PM
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If you're getting your FIRST road bike, I'd go for the Domane. The Emonda is designed for a more stretched out riding position with a lot more drop from the saddle to the bars. That's not usually comfortable for new road riders. If you can, try riding both. The Emonda's a lightweight bike, so if you are NOT a lightweight rider, you might consider that, too.

EDIT: I see you'd already responded while I was writing. Fitness isn't all of it. Riding a road bike is about finding the compromise between comfort and aerodynamics. If your bars are too low or too far away, you'll spend all your time riding on the tops. If they're too high and too close, not only is it less aerodynamic, but it can cause comfort issues.

I recently got a Canyon Endurace. I set it up out of the box and went for a ride. My hands kept going numb. I moved the bars 2.5cm lower, more in line with my other bikes, and the numbness went away.

The other question is flexibility. Are you one of those folks who can bend at the waist and put their palms on the floor? Or are you like me, unable to get lower than mid-calf?

Last edited by genejockey; 08-03-20 at 08:22 PM.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey View Post
If you're getting your FIRST road bike, I'd go for the Domane. The Emonda is designed for a more stretched out riding position with a lot more drop from the saddle to the bars. That's not usually comfortable for new road riders. If you can, try riding both. The Emonda's a lightweight bike, so if you are NOT a lightweight rider, you might consider that, too.
thanks for the insight. Is lightweight in reference to my weight? I'm 5'9 about 190.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by semax10 View Post
thanks for the insight. Is lightweight in reference to my weight? I'm 5'9 about 190.
Yes. I wouldn't worry about 190, but if you were my weight - 220 - I'd think twice about a really lightweight bike.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey View Post
Yes. I wouldn't worry about 190, but if you were my weight - 220 - I'd think twice about a really lightweight bike.
I'm 5'10" and 210#. I ride a 56cm with a 110mm stem and 42cm bars. I have a 10mm spacer under the stem and I can't touch the floor without ending my knees.

I prefer the Emonda over the Domane, but it's not a fair comparison. The Emonda is a SLR with Sram eTap and the Domane was a SL with Ultegra. Also the saddle was different so it's not apples to apples.

I did send me "fit" numbers to the shop i rented it at and they did set it up withe same specs. I also rented the same bike 3 years in a row and by the 3rd time it felt like a used bike. I also brought my spare saddle since I was putting 100+ miles on the bike over 2 rides in a 24 hour rental, so I feel I know how it rides.

Bottom line.. the Domane is the "safe" choice. So it depends on what you want.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:43 PM
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Don't sweat it. Just buy one and ride. The differences that people are talking about aren't that noticeable to a novice. And if you get serious, you'll be on to n+1 soon enough.
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Old 08-03-20, 08:52 PM
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
I own a Emonda and rented a Domane while on vacation.

The Domane has a bit more relaxed fit.

So it depends on you level of fitness and flexibility.

Either one is a great bike.

Originally Posted by semax10 View Post
Thanks. I believe I'm fit. Avid runner trying to add in some long distance rides.
Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
Then get the Emonda.. it's killer ride. Mine is a 2015 SLR and the new 2021 just came out.

I personally think the SL with Ultegra is the best bang for the buck. But 105 is a good choice and a bit less expensive.

I'm a old fat man and been cranking out 150 miles a week on mine. Just takes a bit to get your "fit" dialed in.
OP, Don't confuse Fit and Fitness. Bike fit and Bike Fitness aren't the same thing..

Originally Posted by genejockey View Post
If you're getting your FIRST road bike, I'd go for the Domane. The Emonda is designed for a more stretched out riding position with a lot more drop from the saddle to the bars. That's not usually comfortable for new road riders. If you can, try riding both. The Emonda's a lightweight bike, so if you are NOT a lightweight rider, you might consider that, too.

EDIT: I see you'd already responded while I was writing. Fitness isn't all of it. Riding a road bike is about finding the compromise between comfort and aerodynamics. If your bars are too low or too far away, you'll spend all your time riding on the tops. If they're too high and too close, not only is it less aerodynamic, but it can cause comfort issues.
+1

I'm a fit cyclist, with good flexibility, but the dimensions of my body will never "fit" comfortably on an Emonda
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Old 08-03-20, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by semax10 View Post
thanks for the insight. Is lightweight in reference to my weight? I'm 5'9 about 190.
You're way to heavy for this sport.

Seriously, 190lbs or 220lbs, you'll be fine on either bike, if it fits the dimensions/flexibility of your body.
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Old 08-03-20, 09:05 PM
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I got an Emonda SL5 with the 105 groupset as my first road bike about 2 months ago, so Iíll chime in.

First of all, I love the bike. Compared to my previous bike (a flat bar carbon frame Felt gravel bike), it is SO much faster, more fun to ride, shifts superbly, and I feel like I can just power up hills effortlessly.

That being said, as others mentioned the geometry is a little more aggressive. I am fairly fit... good core strength and I can easily put both palms on the floor, but I do have tight hamstrings from sitting at a desk all day and have a tendency to fall into a posterior pelvic tilt. This has led to some low back pain when I spend a long time in the drops. A pro bike fit helped (shortened the stem by 20mm), and I am working on ungluing my hams and doing more core exercises to improve my position, but this is something to consider even if you are young and fit.

Another thing to consider is that the Domane has an integrated storage compartment.... I was not aware of this and it may have factored into my decision if I had known.

You should really think about what you are realistically going to be using the bike for. If you are going to be going on long rides often (over 50 miles), bikepacking, etc... I would consider the Domane. If you are going to be doing lots of shorter rides, or are a) confident in your flexibility or b) willing to potentially put in work to improve flexibility/core strength/etc, then get the Emonda.

*Editing just to agree with the above point that general fitness and bike fitness are not necessarily related. Iím 31, very strong, good flexibility/mobility, enjoy Spartan races and other athletic activities, but I am still encountering challenges on the Emonda. I have vastly improved in a couple months and am confident I will adapt further, but it is something to seriously take into account when making your decision.

Last edited by Hikebikerun; 08-03-20 at 09:10 PM.
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Old 08-03-20, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Hikebikerun View Post
I got an Emonda SL5 with the 105 groupset as my first road bike about 2 months ago, so Iíll chime in.

First of all, I love the bike. Compared to my previous bike (a flat bar carbon frame Felt gravel bike), it is SO much faster, more fun to ride, shifts superbly, and I feel like I can just power up hills effortlessly.

That being said, as others mentioned the geometry is a little more aggressive. I am fairly fit... good core strength and I can easily put both palms on the floor, but I do have tight hamstrings from sitting at a desk all day and have a tendency to fall into a posterior pelvic tilt. This has led to some low back pain when I spend a long time in the drops. A pro bike fit helped (shortened the stem by 20mm), and I am working on ungluing my hams and doing more core exercises to improve my position, but this is something to consider even if you are young and fit.

Another thing to consider is that the Domane has an integrated storage compartment.... I was not aware of this and it may have factored into my decision if I had known.

You should really think about what you are realistically going to be using the bike for. If you are going to be going on long rides often (over 50 miles), bikepacking, etc... I would consider the Domane. If you are going to be doing lots of shorter rides, or are a) confident in your flexibility or b) willing to potentially put in work to improve flexibility/core strength/etc, then get the Emonda.

*Editing just to agree with the above point that general fitness and bike fitness are not necessarily related. Iím 31, very strong, good flexibility/mobility, enjoy Spartan races and other athletic activities, but I am still encountering challenges on the Emonda. I have vastly improved in a couple months and am confident I will adapt further, but it is something to seriously take into account when making your decision.
thanks ...this was super useful
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Old 08-03-20, 11:32 PM
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First thing is you need to find out which frame geometry is the better fit for your body. Ask if someone does prepurchase fits and show them the two bikes you're considering.

I'm an endurance cyclist but I have a longer torso and shorter legs (in relating to average), so the Emonda is a much better fit for me. Conversely, the Domaine felt all wrong -- but that's just me. And I'm an endurance cyclist.

You have to find out yourself which type of geometry works best. If you can't find a local fitter, than ask if the dealer offers arrangements for extended, back to back test rides. Then you'll have a good idea.
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Old 08-04-20, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
First thing is you need to find out which frame geometry is the better fit for your body. Ask if someone does prepurchase fits and show them the two bikes you're considering.

I'm an endurance cyclist but I have a longer torso and shorter legs (in relating to average), so the Emonda is a much better fit for me. Conversely, the Domaine felt all wrong -- but that's just me. And I'm an endurance cyclist.

You have to find out yourself which type of geometry works best. If you can't find a local fitter, than ask if the dealer offers arrangements for extended, back to back test rides. Then you'll have a good idea.
thanks ... great recommendation
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Old 08-04-20, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
First thing is you need to find out which frame geometry is the better fit for your body. Ask if someone does prepurchase fits and show them the two bikes you're considering.

I'm an endurance cyclist but I have a longer torso and shorter legs (in relating to average), so the Emonda is a much better fit for me. Conversely, the Domaine felt all wrong -- but that's just me. And I'm an endurance cyclist.

You have to find out yourself which type of geometry works best. If you can't find a local fitter, than ask if the dealer offers arrangements for extended, back to back test rides. Then you'll have a good idea.
I hate the terminology that the indutry is using to catagorize bike like the Domane, Defy, etc. Almost any bike that let's the rider produce power comfortably, will work as an endurance bike. Proper bike fit,and clearance for wider tires will make almost any bike work for endurance riding.

I have a body type that's the opposite of your's, so a Domane is a perfect fit(with about 5" of drop to the handlebars).. It's far from what most would call an "endurance" fit, but it allows me to produce power comfortably, and gives a nice aero position in the drops.
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Old 08-04-20, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
I hate the terminology that the indutry is using to catagorize bike like the Domane, Defy, etc. Almost any bike that let's the rider produce power comfortably, will work as an endurance bike. Proper bike fit,and clearance for wider tires will make almost any bike work for endurance riding.

I have a body type that's the opposite of your's, so a Domane is a perfect fit(with about 5" of drop to the handlebars).. It's far from what most would call an "endurance" fit, but it allows me to produce power comfortably, and gives a nice aero position in the drops.
I know. There's an urge to get a "race bike" because "endurance bike" doesn't sound as cool. But the bike that fits is the bike you'll ride, and if you stick yourself with a bike that DOESN'T fit, you'll find your rides getting shorter and your 'activation energy' to get on the bike will increase.
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Old 08-04-20, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by genejockey View Post
I know. There's an urge to get a "race bike" because "endurance bike" doesn't sound as cool. But the bike that fits is the bike you'll ride, and if you stick yourself with a bike that DOESN'T fit, you'll find your rides getting shorter and your 'activation energy' to get on the bike will increase.
Exactly why I mentioned it here. The OP is buying his first bike, and no matter what his fitness level is, a "race" bike might not fit his body well.
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Old 08-04-20, 09:22 AM
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If you don't have any experience you might want to make certain you aren't spending so much money that you won't be able to afford another bike once you find out what specifically does and doesn't work for you.

We all have different things that bug us to varying degrees. What I'm willing to put up with another might not. It will be ashamed if your new bike had something that didn't work for you and you blew your budget and can't get another after getting a couple years experience.
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Old 08-05-20, 02:30 PM
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I ended up ordering the Domane AL5 but do to demand in the area it won't be ready for 2 weeks. I was looking around a and found a used 2020 Cannondale CAAD 8 105 for a fraction of the cost. Should I stick with the trek or not?
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Old 08-05-20, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by semax10 View Post
I ended up ordering the Domane AL5 but do to demand in the area it won't be ready for 2 weeks. I was looking around a and found a used 2020 Cannondale CAAD 8 105 for a fraction of the cost. Should I stick with the trek or not?
If it's a CAAD 8, then no way in hell it's from 2020. Cannondale is on CAAD 13 now.
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Old 08-05-20, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by semax10 View Post
I ended up ordering the Domane AL5 but do to demand in the area it won't be ready for 2 weeks. I was looking around a and found a used 2020 Cannondale CAAD 8 105 for a fraction of the cost. Should I stick with the trek or not?
I'd wait for the Domane. What color did you order?
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Old 08-05-20, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
I'd wait for the Domane. What color did you order?
Black
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