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Thoughts on the 05-06 S-Works Tarmac Carbon and E5 Alu frameset

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

Thoughts on the 05-06 S-Works Tarmac Carbon and E5 Alu frameset

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Old 10-30-07, 04:16 PM
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AbsoluteZ3RO
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Thoughts on the 05-06 S-Works Tarmac Carbon and E5 Alu frameset

I keep seeing this frameset pop up and it intrigues me. Anyone have any thoughts on it? Was it a popular frameset? Was it light? Seems like an interesting idea, but I wonder how it was in the real world.

I noticed they don't make it any more.
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Old 10-31-07, 11:12 AM
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doesn't anyone have this bike? Maybe that's why they don't make it any more.
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Old 10-31-07, 05:46 PM
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I have this frame in a 54. Reasonably light (i think around 1.2kg), very stiff. Looks cool. This replaced my noodle, a giant tcr 0.

I believe Specialized dropped this frame manufacturing technique for a couple of reasons:

1. Cost - I have been told it was extremely expensive to manufacture to the point that they were losing money on each frame.
2. Bonding - the bonding between the carbon and alu headtube has a history of failing. Specialized replaced many of these broken frames (headtubes) with the newer tarmac expert.

I cant complain with mine at all, have had for 2 years, ride 200-300k per week and it is definately very stiff. If it does fail, specialized will replace so i'm not worried at all. I have also seen somewhere that it is in the top 5 for BB stiffness ever made.

If you were looking a buying one, for me now it would come down to price, If you could buy at the right price, go for it.
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Old 10-31-07, 09:39 PM
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What would you say the frame is worth - what about a whole bike with ultegra components?

What if I don't buy from a dealership? Would it still be covered if the bonding came loose?
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Old 10-31-07, 10:18 PM
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Haydos
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Here is Australia the frame retailed for $3k and then went on special for $2k. The bike came with Record and Ksyrium SL for $8500 and then specialed for $7k. I'm not sure what prices would be in the states

I believe the warranty only covers the original owner, but you would have to check. One note though, nearly all of the frames that had a problem cracked within a couple of months riding, so if it is second hand and is ok, I would assume you would not have a problem.

One note to remember - the frame has a really short headtube (mine's around 11.5cm - I think), so if you like sitting upright you will need alot of spacers/ canted stem.

Another frame I would consider (especially because of pricing) is the Scott CR1. The CR1 has a taller headtube - more upright position, is very stable due to the longer wheelbase and it's lighter.

Good Luck!!
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Old 11-01-07, 03:46 AM
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Specialized had these on clearance over the summer. I bought one and have about 2500 mi on it. I've been happy with it overall. Quick handling, stiff and fairly comfortable, but coming off of an old Cannondale anything is confortable. Had a bit of an issue with the bike feeling shaky on 50+ mph decents on one ride. Only felt this was on 2 of 6 decents, it seemed to happen when the road was a bit rougher or it could have been the shivering rider on top. One of my friends also bought one of these and the head tube came unglued. Specialized sent him an S-Works Tarmac frame to replace it, no problems. I got a decent price on it, I only ride in the mountains once or twice a year, great crit and road race bike, I'd buy it again.
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Old 11-01-07, 07:43 AM
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FYI, our team got some of them for stupid cheap in the spring. I think 6 of them failed where the top tube carbon bit is jointed to the aluminum portion of the head tube. Nothing spectacular.... just after some miles and racing, they were coming unbonded. This wasn't a problem with these frames in the past however. I think some of the leftover ones might have been a bad batch. But, Specialized made it right. They gave everyone new 2008 Tarmac Pro frames in exchange. Those are both lighter and stiffer. So it worked out well
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