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Madone vs. Roubaix vs. Tarmac vs. Onix vs. Orca vs. TCR-1

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Madone vs. Roubaix vs. Tarmac vs. Onix vs. Orca vs. TCR-1

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Old 09-12-05, 03:29 PM
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7rider
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We're shopping for a new road bike for my wife, and I was wondering if anyone had feedback on these bikes. She's 5' 8" with a 32" inseam and long arms, so she really doesn't need a women's frame. She doesn't have any back problems and is a good climber. She wants some carbon fiber comfort over her old aluminum frame Trek 1400. Budget range is from $2,500 to $3,500. I love my Madone SL 5.2, but I was thinking of something different for her. I've been going over the websites and reviews and visiting the shops, but I'd love to hear feedback about positive and negative things that really stick out about these bikes.

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Old 09-12-05, 03:45 PM
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Cervelo R 2.5 Chorus, $3,099?
oooh... that's pretty, and she'd have campy instead of shimano on her bike. I'll have to check what lbs carries Cervelo. I've seen some on the local roads.
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Old 09-12-05, 03:47 PM
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yes?
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Old 09-12-05, 04:56 PM
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There is quite a bit of geometry difference beween the bikes you listed. You need to take some test rides and see what fits best. That will narrow down your choices a lot.
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Old 09-12-05, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by johnny99
There is quite a bit of geometry difference beween the bikes you listed. You need to take some test rides and see what fits best. That will narrow down your choices a lot.
Ditto.
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Old 09-12-05, 05:36 PM
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Tarmac vs Roubaix thread
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=134032

I am waiting until LBS has both for me to ride in same size concurrently.

Good luck.
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Old 09-12-05, 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeTL
Cervelo R 2.5 Chorus, $3,099?
+1 x 10... You know I love mine. The ride is second to none. Very fast and comfortable for me. Deffinatly a bike worth checking out
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Old 09-12-05, 08:05 PM
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I just purchased a TCR Limited bike from a LBS and absolutely love it. I was shopping for my first bike and did not plan on spending so much, but made the mistake of test riding the bike...or maybe not a mistake but every other bike I test road in paled in comparison. Yes, I was a newbie, but the first thing I noticed was how much smoother the ride was and how quickly it seemed to jump forward with so little effort. I rode it back to back with several an Orbea Mitis and Voluta. I also later rode a TCR2 Aluminum, Roubiax, and Felt bikes. They just were not the same, although the Mitis was close and I almost pulled the trigger b/c the dealer was willing to make a great deal on it. I looked for ~6-weeks before I made a decision and couldn't be happier.

I learned from the dealer the TCR Limited is a stop gap carbon bike for Giant. Shimano is changing the 105 group to 10-speed so Giant decided to make the TCR Limited, which is full Ultegra with TruVativ cranks and Xero wheels (the OCR is a triple up front) until the new 105 group was ready. Suposedly after Sept. Giant will not be making any more and will go back to the Carbon TCR1, TCR2, TCR3 models with a mix of Dura Ace, Ultegra, and the new 105 group.

For the money, I don't know that you can find a better deal. If the compact frame geometry fits her (I have long arms and the compact frames I rode fit much better than the traditional frames) IMO you can't find a much better deal on a full carbon bike.
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Old 09-12-05, 08:35 PM
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i have an 04 TCR1, i like it... its a fast, quiet ride very comfortable for me, i did upgrade mine to 10 speed dura ace though. Those bikes are all very different and she really needs to ride them and see what fits her best, anyway you go you arent getting a bad bike and if the bike doesnt fit her well and isnt comfortable to ride you are just throwing your cash down the drain cause she will prolly wont lose interest in riding the bike.
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Old 09-12-05, 08:40 PM
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Specialized E5. Sexiest bike ever made. EVAH!

But them I'm biased ...
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Old 09-12-05, 09:01 PM
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I ride an Onix...I absolutely love it. It is light, fast, comfy, all the things you want in a bike. I, like everyone else here, second the "go to the LBS and ride them all" way of thinking. I rode my Onix for about .1 mile and knew then and there that's the bike I wanted.

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Old 09-12-05, 09:09 PM
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your wife has pretty much the same build as me. I just got my first road bike recently(Trek 2100) and I have a 56 inch frame (your wife might wanna try 54, I went with 56 because Im 16 and still growing) Anyways, a friend of mine has the roubaix and enjoys it a lot, he says the geometry on it puts him in a comfortable upright position that is easy on his back. sorry but cant help you with the other bikes.
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Old 09-12-05, 09:30 PM
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your wife has pretty much the same build as me.
Bob, if you're a guy, I hope you're just talking about her height and inseam My wife actually has a build like Carrie-Anne Moss. I, on the other hand, look more like the Keymaker.

We have two young kids, so it's just nice to read what to look out for before dragging the energy bar/energy drink fanatics to the local bike shop. I'd send my wife out on her own, but she wants me to be there to help her look for a bike since I'm the bike geek. Her parents are visiting in a few weeks, so maybe we can go take a more relaxed look at bikes when they visit.
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Old 09-12-05, 10:55 PM
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Not sure where you're shopping, but a trip up 80 to Davis might be worthwhile. The shop I bought my Specialized from, Davis Wheelworks, also carries Cervelos and Kestrel-another solid carbon brand-plus others. A shop across the street carries Trek & Giant, although their Giant inventory might be a little soft.
http://www.daviswheelworks.com/
http://www.freewheelerbikecenter.com/about.php
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Old 09-12-05, 11:00 PM
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[QUOTE=7rider]Bob, if you're a guy, I hope you're just talking about her height and inseam My wife actually has a build like Carrie-Anne Moss. I, on the other hand, look more like the Keymaker.

lol I should have been more specific, same height, inseam, and even longer arms
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Old 09-13-05, 11:18 AM
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Agree with everyone who suggested getting the bike she is most comfortable riding. The Madone, Orca, Onix and Tarmac have racing geometries while the Roubaix is a very upright compact comfort bike(though it can really move too). In your price range the Roubaix Comp is likely to be the most comfortable for long rides, if she likes the more upright riding position. It was designed for comfort and performance. However, it is a little boxy looking and plastic looking. The Orbea bikes are beautifulracing bikes The Orca is a flat out better bike and great looking. The Onix frame is a few hundred grams heavier, but more importantly, it is a stiffer frame. If you do go with the Onix(which is a fine racing bike) DO NOT GET THE AMERICAN CLASSIC WHEELS! There have been terrible problems with those specific wheels, especially on the Onix. The Tarmac Pro is a great racer, with a great lokk, with that sloping top tube. It is a prettty severe racing geometry. I assume you mean the TCR Composite 1, as the TCR-1 has an aluminum frame. It's a fast bike with a more relaxed geometry. Forget the suggestions for the Cervelo Chorus. There are perhaps 2 Chorus components, and the rest are cheap junk. You would have to upgrade practically the whole bike! It sounds really tempting, as the Cervelo R 2.5 is probably the best racing frame made, and if it really had a Chorus gruppo, it would be a great racing bike, as the Campy Chorus is now almost as good as the Record. That would be the fastest of all these bikes, but the Cervelo frame has an extreme racing geometry and would not be comfortable for even a half hour's riding, unless she is a Tour de France calibre rider. Finally, I would seriously look into the new Cannondale Synapse. It is a happy medium between the Roubaix and the flat out racing bikes. It is full Carbon Fiber, even the drop outs, is beautifully made(much better than the Roubaix)and is a very sleek looking performance bike that is also comfortable to ride all day or in Criteriums. It is very fast, handles great, and looks great, especially in the Matte Black finish. A nice touch-there are no decals. The name Cannondale is simply a slightly and subtlely a different shade of black Carbon Fiber. It was recently reviewed in the July issue of Cycling Plus and received a 9 score out of a possible 10. "Set's the benchmark for comfort, stability and stiffness." I'm sure you know much more than me about the Madone. Good luck! You picked a thoughtful and great selection of bikes. Now go buy the one she likes to ride the most.

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Old 09-13-05, 11:23 AM
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7rider, I've test ridden both an Onix and Orca in a 54cm size frame, probably the same as what your wife would ride. To be honest I wasn't really that impressed. Especially with the Orca which has a $5k price tag. They were nice bikes, that's for sure, but I'm not sure if they were worth the extra cost over say a $2k bike. Maybe if I had ridden them for a longer ride I would think differently, 15 to 20 minutes each isn't enough time to get a really good feel for it.

I also was very dissapointed with the paint on both. If you look closely at the colored strips on the black paint, it is really some sort of decal that is clear-coated over. The decal is not cut well, and has white edges from whatever paper it was cut from still visible. Pretty crappy for a $5k bike if you ask me...
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Old 09-13-05, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by jdtschida
7rider, I've test ridden both an Onix and Orca in a 54cm size frame, probably the same as what your wife would ride. To be honest I wasn't really that impressed. Especially with the Orca which has a $5k price tag. They were nice bikes, that's for sure, but I'm not sure if they were worth the extra cost over say a $2k bike. Maybe if I had ridden them for a longer ride I would think differently, 15 to 20 minutes each isn't enough time to get a really good feel for it.

I also was very dissapointed with the paint on both. If you look closely at the colored strips on the black paint, it is really some sort of decal that is clear-coated over. The decal is not cut well, and has white edges from whatever paper it was cut from still visible. Pretty crappy for a $5k bike if you ask me...
Umm, the higher end Orbea stuff is all hand painted, there shouldn't be any decals at all...
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Old 09-13-05, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Villon
If you do go with the Onix(which is a fine racing bike) DO NOT GET THE AMERICAN CLASSIC WHEELS! There have been terrible problems with those specific wheels, especially on the Onix.
Problems such as?
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Old 09-13-05, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Villon
Forget the suggestions for the Cervelo Chorus. There are perhaps 2 Chorus components, and the rest are cheap junk. You would have to upgrade practically the whole bike! It sounds really tempting, as the Cervelo R 2.5 is probably the best racing frame made, and if it really had a Chorus gruppo, it would be a great racing bike, as the Campy Chorus is now almost as good as the Record. That would be the fastest of all these bikes, but the Cervelo frame has an extreme racing geometry and would not be comfortable for even a half hour's riding, unless she is a Tour de France calibre rider .

How in the world could you decide what is and what is not comfortable for someone else. I am by no means a TDF caliber or even a Cat 5 for that matter and I find the bike quite comfortable. Unless she tries one she will not know and for you to say flat out that it is not comfortable is really spreading bad info and showing your lack of knowledge on the bike.You say 2 Chorus components and the rest junk???????????? They are good enough for me and many others.The Easton Velomax wheelset is a pretty decent wheelset as far as I am concerned......Is it the Junk FSA team issue Carbon cranks you don't like???? They are good enough for me and my 200lbs. The FSA platinum Bottom bracket???????is that the junk piece? Please tell me just what you would HAVE to upgrade to make the bike rideable? Sorry if I am rambling....LoL
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Old 09-13-05, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Jaye
Umm, the higher end Orbea stuff is all hand painted, there shouldn't be any decals at all...
You sure about that? It sure didn't look hand painted to me! The LBS guy also felt that the "paint job" wasn't that great because of being able to see those white edges.
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Old 09-13-05, 01:42 PM
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Anyway, back OT, how 'bout a sweet Litespeed for $2,100?

edit: Whoops! Sorry, it's not carbon. The whole "Seven" thing messed me up...
There's a local shop with Litespeeds, so we'll check those out too. My wife always loved her steel mountain bike over her aluminum one so we should also take a look at titanium. I own a Seven Sola, but I just can't deny the price/weight performance ratio of carbon fiber bikes over titanium these days. Before I purchased my Madone SL 5.2, I was looking at a Seven Axiom frame, but the frame alone is over $2,500 and it just wasn't in my budget at the moment (I've picked up a big mortgage and two kids since I purchased the Sola). For under $3k (before tax), I was able to pick up the Madone which I think is a very nice complete bike.
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Old 09-13-05, 02:07 PM
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Problems such as the hubs cracking. There was a huge recall recently.
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Old 09-13-05, 02:55 PM
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Gary: Sorry to hurt your feelings about the Cervelo Chorus. I realize you own one and I would feel the same way. However, the Cervelo frame costs $2200, leaving $900 for all of the components for the bike. Campagnolo Chorus groupsets cost over $1000. Then there are whels and bars and stems etc. It is all subjective. Me, I'm not so fond of the Velomax wheels. I was only going by my own research on the bike along with those of the racer's and Bike Shop Owners in New York when at one time I inquired about the bike. But we are just mere mortals. If you enjoy the bike, great. Hey, I'd love to have a bike with that frame. I'm just not crazy about the components. I am crazy about other things. Enjoy it. You've got the fastest and best racing frame in the world.
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Old 09-13-05, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Villon
Problems such as the hubs cracking. There was a huge recall recently.
If you are going to knock the wheels without ever having ridden them, at least get your story straight. The recall was voluntary on the part of the company for a problem that MAY occur. I have yet to hear about anyone actually having a problem with the hubs.
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