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Need an upgrade... choices, choices, choices...

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

Need an upgrade... choices, choices, choices...

Old 02-23-06, 03:28 PM
  #1  
gluckster2
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Hey all,

You never failed me before, so here I go again.

Thanks to Uncle Sam (although, not a big thanks) I'm coming into a bit of pocket change as soon as my taxes come in. It won't nearly be enough for a new ride, unfortunately. But I would like to buy a little something something for myself as an upgrade. Now, I hope to some day soon buy a new bike, something a step up from mine, perhaps even by next season. So I don't want this upgrade to be TO big (i.e. a Mavic Ksyrium Wheelset for $700.... aahhhhh....)

What do YOU all think would be the very best, small to medium size upgrade for someone who plans to put on a decent amount of miles on my bike this season (around 2000, but I'll be pushing for more).

I'm thinking either a new fork, new handle bars and seat post, new crank set, or new ???

Can't wait to see what kinda awesome ideas you all come up with!!

Thanks in advance!

Here's the specs for my '03 Giant OCR 2:

frame Extra-light ALUXX butted aluminum, Compact Road Design, Integrated Forged Headtube with Aero Down Tube
fork Giant CrMo Aero Blade, 1"
derailleur Front: Shimano Tiagra, Rear: Shimano Tiagra,
derailleur shifters Shimano Tiagra,STI, 9 speed
cranks Shimano Tiagra, triple, 30/42/52T
pedals Shimano M505
handlebar Alloy anatomic
stem Giant Compact adjustable, alloy
headset Integrated 1"
brakes Tektro Dual Pivot
levers Shimano Tiagra
saddle Giant OCR DOUBLE DENSITY
seatpost Alloy SL micro adjust, 27.2
rims Mavic CXP 22, 32H
hubs Shimano Sora,QR, cassette
tires Michelin Dynamic, 700x 25c
cassette Shimano HG50 12- 25T, 9 speed
spokes Stainless Steel, 15G
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Old 02-23-06, 04:00 PM
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dtrain
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Well maybe not the Elite's or SSL's just yet, but a good quality wheelset (maybe Cosmos-level or handbuilts) can make a big difference now and be transferred to a new bike. Saddle, tires, and whatever improves the fit seem to be good choices as well. I wouldn't do a fork or start pulling Tiagra stuff off for no reason. That adjustable stem might be a candidate though.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:08 PM
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Bike is average with decent components so unless something has broken...

...new pair of shorts, rest of the money goes into a retirement fund.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:20 PM
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^ +1. All your components are pretty good, there's nothing sticking out as being out of place, save for perhaps the adjustable stem.

I'd wait 'til the components wear out before replacing them. That way, you earn a bit of interest, make the most of the stuff you have and have a bike that you're used to and enjoy riding.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:21 PM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by dtrain
Well maybe not the Elite's or SSL's just yet, but a good quality wheelset (maybe Cosmos-level or handbuilts) can make a big difference now and be transferred to a new bike. Saddle, tires, and whatever improves the fit seem to be good choices as well. I wouldn't do a fork or start pulling Tiagra stuff off for no reason. That adjustable stem might be a candidate though.

Yeah. You're right about the Tiagra. I don't race, so I really don't see a need to pull that stuff off. Maybe drop a double in the front instead of the triple, but that's only a maybe...

Good call on being able to transfer a wheel set from my old bike to another... I never thought of that....

thanks!
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Old 02-23-06, 04:32 PM
  #6  
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Not knowing how much Uncle Sam is giving you I have 2 suggestions.

#1 Garmin Edge 305 - this thing kicks ass, best cycling computer out there other than the ones that do power output (real power vs the Polar BS power).

#2 Pedal Force QS2 frame and fork. Since you have a reasonable component group you could get this frame and for for less than a grand (you will also need a new headset and a seatpost) and transfer the rest of your components...then ratherthan getting a new bike in the next year you can upgrade the components. Several here have them and they seem to be a hit. I believe this will be my next build as well.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:37 PM
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jenson usa has an Ultegra crank set for $70
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Old 02-23-06, 04:43 PM
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Put it away for your new bike fund.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:45 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by rufvelo
Bike is average with decent components so unless something has broken...
...new pair of shorts, rest of the money goes into a retirement fund.
+1. The only exception: Put some money into maintenance. New cables, brake pads, chain, maybe a cassette, and tune it nicely. Make what you've got work great and enjoy it.
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Old 02-23-06, 04:50 PM
  #10  
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Old 02-23-06, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Avalanche325
Put it away for your new bike fund.
Hear hear! Start up a savings account for the new bike and throw it in there.

Nothing stands out as needing replacement. The only thing I'd really consider is the stem, but probably more for aesthetics. Current one is perfectly functional.

If you really feel the need to buy something, maybe some tools?
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Old 02-23-06, 05:34 PM
  #12  
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I don't have enough information. Why do you ride and what do you want to get out of it? Perhaps a second bike with a completely different purpose (commuting, off-road, cyclocross, fixie for running errands) would be appropriate. Are you into posing? Racing? Being a fast guy in Prospect Park?
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Old 02-23-06, 05:53 PM
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Tektro brake pads are the only thing I would find value in replacing. I like being able to stop in the rain though.

Put the rest in the new (used) bike fund.
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Old 02-23-06, 09:12 PM
  #14  
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I would look at new wheels. You could reduce the weight of your bike by over a pound with these:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Xero-Lite-XR-1-R...QQcmdZViewItem
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Old 02-23-06, 10:29 PM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by mollusk
I don't have enough information. Why do you ride and what do you want to get out of it? Perhaps a second bike with a completely different purpose (commuting, off-road, cyclocross, fixie for running errands) would be appropriate. Are you into posing? Racing? Being a fast guy in Prospect Park?
Well, mollusk, I can tell you had a bad day at work. I'm sorry that you work a shi# job and that your boss expects you to drop to your kness everytime he walks in the room. But seriously... it's not my fault that your life sucks, so don't take it out on me. Okay?

I ride because I love it. I ride because I hate hills and I want to love them. I ride because I love being outside. I ride for the same reason you and everyone else here rides.

I ride because I want to ride.

If you had read my post, you'd see I was asking about my Giant OCR and how I could tweek her a bit... I didn't ask my Nisiki fixy that I just built up for putting around town (the one I use for a "completely different purpose".)

Thank you for opening my eyes. I had no idea that there were different kinds of "riding".

Oh... and by the way... I AM the fast guy in Prospect Park.

Thanks for the input mollusk. Your just swell.



p.s. Hey Second Mouse.... one word for ya buddy...

schhhweeeeeeetttt....
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Old 02-23-06, 11:16 PM
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Why u dont get a pair of campagnolo legs? those ones do not fail EVER!.

Get tubulars, a set of tubular wheels, or put tubular clinchers to that thing... anything else u change wont be so radical so u wont feel so much as a difference between before and after. Do that, r like 100 bucks because u need 3 tubular clinchers plus the antipuncture stuff. Then u have 600 bucks to spend in wifey, girly or in getting a set of campagnolo legs...

cya

ps: change that stem... and please dont put the new one backwards (going up), use it as it suppouse to be, classic roaddy...

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Old 02-23-06, 11:57 PM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by Avalanche325
Put it away for your new bike fund.
ditto.
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Old 02-24-06, 06:01 AM
  #18  
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Originally Posted by gluckster2
Well, mollusk, I can tell you had a bad day at work. I'm sorry that you work a shi# job and that your boss expects you to drop to your kness everytime he walks in the room. But seriously... it's not my fault that your life sucks, so don't take it out on me. Okay?
?

I wasn't trying to p*** in your cornflakes. If you wanted to interpret it that way that is your problem.

Originally Posted by gluckster2
I ride because I love it. I ride because I hate hills and I want to love them. I ride because I love being outside. I ride for the same reason you and everyone else here rides.

I ride because I want to ride.

If you had read my post, you'd see I was asking about my Giant OCR and how I could tweek her a bit... I didn't ask my Nisiki fixy that I just built up for putting around town (the one I use for a "completely different purpose".)

Thank you for opening my eyes. I had no idea that there were different kinds of "riding".

Oh... and by the way... I AM the fast guy in Prospect Park.

Thanks for the input mollusk. Your just swell.



p.s. Hey Second Mouse.... one word for ya buddy...

schhhweeeeeeetttt....
OK, now I have more information.

I'd put the money into a new bike fund. If you just have to have some instant gratification then get new wheels because you can always move those to a new bike eventually. Light aero wheels will give you a performance boost and make you a slightly faster guy going around Prospect Park.
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Old 02-24-06, 08:35 AM
  #19  
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Depending on the $ you want to spend, consider getting a new lighter set of wheels, as was mentioned earlier. You can get some great deals on Ritchey WCS DS wheelsets, which are really light and nice, tough wheels. I put about 4000 miles on a set last year, great price and weight. On a lesser scale, consider getting a Ritchey WCS stem, it will cost about $75 bucks, and will save you a pile of weight over the adjustable stem you have.

PS. Ignore the "You need a new bike," bs from the snobs. If you wanted advice on buying/saving for a new bike, I assume you would have asked for it. If you like your bike, and it fits, and you want to fix it up a little, good for you. Sometimes I hate posting a question, because of the inevitable non-answers I know I will get. For example, if you say, "I just got an SRM power meter, and I am having trouble getting it to do..." whatever. You will get a bunch of "SRM sucks, you should have got a Powertap." or "who cares about power, just use an heart rate monitor," or "my Ergomo really works great, you should try one of those..." etc. Good luck with the upgrades.
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Old 02-24-06, 09:00 AM
  #20  
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Originally Posted by gluckster2
Well, mollusk, I can tell you had a bad day at work. I'm sorry that you work a shi# job and that your boss expects you to drop to your kness everytime he walks in the room. But seriously... it's not my fault that your life sucks, so don't take it out on me. Okay?

I ride because I love it. I ride because I hate hills and I want to love them. I ride because I love being outside. I ride for the same reason you and everyone else here rides.

I ride because I want to ride.

If you had read my post, you'd see I was asking about my Giant OCR and how I could tweek her a bit... I didn't ask my Nisiki fixy that I just built up for putting around town (the one I use for a "completely different purpose".)

Thank you for opening my eyes. I had no idea that there were different kinds of "riding".

Oh... and by the way... I AM the fast guy in Prospect Park.

Thanks for the input mollusk. Your just swell.



....
These were actually reasonable questions. How you use the bike affects how you might want to spec it out.
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Old 02-25-06, 11:36 AM
  #21  
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I'm surprised no one has said anything about a new fork.. especially since I can get a decent carbon one for about $100.

I thought for sure that would be the first thing people would talk about.

??
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