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Is the fully integrated cockpit inevitable?

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Is the fully integrated cockpit inevitable?

Old 02-24-21, 07:19 PM
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Plainsman
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Is the fully integrated cockpit inevitable?

I get it. I like it. It looks clean. Personally love it. That said, my bike purchase did not include an integrated cockpit. If it were available at my price point would I have done it? Sure. Just wondering if this trend will likely trickle down to even the budget bikes - or if the practicality of stem swaps and stem height adjustments will win in the end. Opinions?
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Old 02-24-21, 07:27 PM
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Everything trickles down eventually
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Old 02-24-21, 07:36 PM
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If it makes money, it doesn't have to be a good idea.
Money is its own justification.
selah.
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Old 02-24-21, 07:39 PM
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Less experienced cyclists would BENEFIT from adjustability as they "seek their fit".
Form follows fashion is my call here.
Yeah, its inevitable.
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Old 02-24-21, 07:42 PM
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I'm a fan. Currently running separate stem/bars on my SuperSix Evo while I get my fit dialed in, then I'll be going with a one piece fully integrated cockpit. Love the clean look, and with di2 there's no maintenance issues, which is usually the main complaint about fully integrated setups.
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Old 02-24-21, 07:59 PM
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Not if mechanics have any say.
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Old 02-24-21, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Rocket-Sauce View Post
Not if mechanics have any say.
I hear you, but I doubt they will. The consumer drives the market. I will be surprised if we see a single TDF bike with exposed cables this season.
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Old 02-25-21, 02:19 AM
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I had an integrated cockpit on my Madone 9 and got rid of it. Replaced it with Enve stem and bars. Integrated cockpit limits your choice of bar angle and in my case, stem length.
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Old 02-25-21, 06:27 AM
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If they can get lower cost integrated cockpit parts (eg. alloy?), which in turn means that the only parts that fit are made by them, then certainly integrated will continue downward thru the models. Every brand some day could have their own uniquely shaped seatpost, and as years go by folks will be searching for the past model-year specific seatpost they need when the original gets damaged or breaks.

Interesting to note the Spesh Aethos marketing however, including "But with the rider at the center of the conversation, our goal was to make a bike that would fit your riding lifestyle -- not the other way around." With the highlights for this section titled the "New Modern Road Bike" including that it has a 27.2 seatpost and a threaded BB. So there's hope this experiment works and the makers continue to at least offer options that neither lock you into a compromise fit, nor proprietary parts.
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Old 02-25-21, 07:50 AM
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Yes and no.

At the very high end, I think that there will always be room for something very slick like one-piece bar/stems.

For the enthusiasts, I think that we'll see more of the approach taken by the likes of Trek, with individual components that can be swapped for size/shape needs/preference. Routing may not be completely internal, but they'll make a point of cleaning up the cockpit, for both visual and aero concerns, and getting the cabling/brake lines in to the frame more quickly than before. Whereas things usually snake in to the frame on the inside of the downtube, I expect we'll start to see them entering in/around the headtube.
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Old 02-25-21, 08:37 AM
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I'm mostly afraid of one piece bar/stems getting really cheap. Cheaper than 2 piece systems like specialized's.

I bet you'd hear stuff like "your stem length doesn't matter as much as you think" or "90% of humans need bar widths close to 40cm". It'd be a lot like the crank situation right now, imo
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Old 02-25-21, 08:44 AM
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Looks to me like a way to convince folks to spend $400US for handlebars and a stem.
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Old 02-25-21, 08:51 AM
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If bike forum posts are representative of most cycling enthusiasts, you got nothing to worry about. Half of the posters here are still using rim brakes, tubes, and 8 speed cassettes!
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Old 02-25-21, 08:56 AM
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I only like an integrated cockpit for bikes with wireless shifting and hydraulic brakes. No cable should have to make those twists and turns.
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Old 02-25-21, 08:56 AM
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It probably will happen, but adjustability should be the deciding factor. Riders lose weight, gain weight, wake up with stiff backs, pull muscles, etc. What may work/feel good today might not in a week or even a day. You have to be able to fiddle with you fit.
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Old 02-25-21, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
It probably will happen, but adjustability should be the deciding factor. Riders lose weight, gain weight, wake up with stiff backs, pull muscles, etc. What may work/feel good today might not in a week or even a day. You have to be able to fiddle with you fit.
This is what's nice about the Trek approach - it grabs the majority of the benefit while still leaving room to adjust (though not as easily as having cables/brake lines/wires flailing in the wind). This looks to be a one-piece bar/stem, but they've done two-piece aero cockpits with the Madone, and I don't see why they couldn't do both two-piece and external tucking -

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Old 02-25-21, 09:44 AM
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They will stick around but they absolutely won't be on everything. Spend 5 seconds and look for all the "hey what stem should I use", "does this setup fit right", "How do you get comfortable on" threads in here to get an idea for how prevalent poor fit is across the entire industry. Integrated makes sense if you have a really good idea what your fit its. Even then it's a gamble and I hope you don't mind paying for it. Been doing this over 30 years and even though I can replicate a fit from one of my bikes to another I find I will completely change it as I ride it and get used to the bike. Even my most carefully laid out plans end up with a stem swap from time to time. Hell even on the last build I went down a bar size....something I haven't done in almost 20 years. Didn't know that until I had been on it for a few months.

So...yeah they look nice. If they're readily available in aluminum and are actually lighter than just doing a traditional bar and stem combo...and they're available not only in every bar width but also stem length and angle combination....then maybe.

Remember when people tried to simplify the saddle and seatpost combination? You can't "standardize" and eliminate options in one of the most crucial fit component combinations. Great on paper, looks cool at the races where a bunch of flexible 20-somethings don't care as long as it goes long and low and looks cool. In the real world though...not so much.

Will continue on high end. Won't trickle down very well at all.
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Old 02-25-21, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Rocket-Sauce View Post
Not if mechanics have any say.
Meh....
As a mechanic I can say that there are some integrated systems that I abhor *cough*TrekMadone*cough* but if I opposed everything that people like the looks of but is completely mechanically stupid then I wouldn't have much to do every day. I' just be out here posting non-stop.... wait...
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Old 02-25-21, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
This is what's nice about the Trek approach - it grabs the majority of the benefit while still leaving room to adjust (though not as easily as having cables/brake lines/wires flailing in the wind). This looks to be a one-piece bar/stem, but they've done two-piece aero cockpits with the Madone, and I don't see why they couldn't do both two-piece and external tucking -

Call me radical, but I think total electronic controls will eventually come to the bicycle. If you look at how much of our life/devices including automobiles are using them, it will happen. I don't know how I feel about that. For the brakes, I'm thinking a pressure strip running the length of the handlebars will replace the brake levers. Look at those bars. Maybe it runs down the center on the top or bottom. Or maybe it loops around like where the tape overlaps. Simple pressure would activate the brakes. The rider and the control would adapt quickly. Just like playing a video game or driving your car. That's good or bad, depending on a person's point of view.
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Old 02-25-21, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Call me radical, but I think total electronic controls will eventually come to the bicycle. If you look at how much of our life/devices including automobiles are using them, it will happen. I don't know how I feel about that. For the brakes, I'm thinking a pressure strip running the length of the handlebars will replace the brake levers. Look at those bars. Maybe it runs down the center on the top or bottom. Or maybe it loops around like where the tape overlaps. Simple pressure would activate the brakes. The rider and the control would adapt quickly. Just like playing a video game or driving your car. That's good or bad, depending on a person's point of view.
Eh. I think that a lot of things will go wireless and electronic, but I don't see brakes on bikes going that route very soon. The liability of failure for a fly-by-wire braking system is just too high, even with redundancy (which would be a tough sell in road cycling [think of the grams!])
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Old 02-25-21, 10:03 AM
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We haven't even talked about the trends and fads that come and go. Did I read somewhere that narrow handlebars are back to being in vogue? How are you going to experiment with that if you have an integrated setup? The system WiFi mentions seems to be a lot better. I would always be in favor of a modular system over an all in one.
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Old 02-25-21, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
Eh. I think that a lot of things will go wireless and electronic, but I don't see brakes on bikes going that route very soon. The liability of failure for a fly-by-wire braking system is just too high, even with redundancy (which would be a tough sell in road cycling [think of the grams!])
What do you think is controlling most of the autos people drive now? Maybe not in the cheap ones, but certainly a big part of the industry.
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Old 02-25-21, 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Did I read somewhere that narrow handlebars are back to being in vogue?
Some are going more extreme than others, but yeah - aero concerns have more people looking at narrower options. I think that guys running 36cm are going to be outliers, but people nudging down and making 38-40 more common probably isn't a bad bet. I recently moved from 44 to 42cm, and think that I could certainly go a little narrower without ill effect.
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Old 02-25-21, 10:11 AM
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Integrated stem/bar on all bikes just sounds terrible. Its a solution to a problem that only exists for like 1% of cyclists- those who feel the need to make it seem like their bike doesnt use cables/hoses and/or those who ride electronic shifting.

The easiest reason not to is- what if I dont want a 120mm stem and 42mm bars? What if I want 44mm bars and a 100mm stem? Oh great- I need to pay $200-400 for a new bar/stem combo.
Meanwhile, if I want a new stem currently, I pay $25 for a Kalloy Uno 7 and have a reliable stem that is lighter than most anything else. And if I want new bars, I can spend $40-100 and get the exact width, reach, drop, and bend that I want.
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Old 02-25-21, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
What do you think is controlling most of the autos people drive now? Maybe not in the cheap ones, but certainly a big part of the industry.
Do cars no longer have emergency brake levers? I'm aware of regenerative braking, obviously, but I assume there's quite a bit redundancy in there, the weight and complexity of which is allowable and expected in an automobile. In the road bike form, I would think there would be heavy opposition to those types of systems, unless it was for e-bikes and the brake systems were for regenerative purposes.
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