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Newbie here...Upgrade question

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

Newbie here...Upgrade question

Old 07-31-09, 03:09 PM
  #1  
TGilmore
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Newbie here...Upgrade question

I just bought a Felt F85. So far I am really happy w/ the bike. Curious what the members of BF think about the F85 for a first road bike. Anyway, what would be the first thing to upgrade. I would like to start upgrading next spring for a lighter and faster bike.

Thanks,

Tyson G
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Old 07-31-09, 04:56 PM
  #2  
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First thing to upgrade? Get yourself as comfy as possible -- change the saddle, stem, handlebars, and / or pedals if you need to. If you're not super comfy, you're not going to ride.
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Old 07-31-09, 05:27 PM
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Then wheelset if you have the itch for somethime that shows you upgraded the bike.
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Old 07-31-09, 05:35 PM
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Make changes needed for fit and comfort. Other than that, ride it. Nothing you buy (except perhaps coaching and a power meter) will make you significantly faster.
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Old 07-31-09, 05:44 PM
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Wait a bit, ride a lot and see if there's something you'd like to change once you get comfortable and used to riding.

Ed
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Old 07-31-09, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by ericm979 View Post
make changes needed for fit and comfort. Other than that, ride it. Nothing you buy (except perhaps coaching and a power meter) will make you significantly faster.
+1
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Old 07-31-09, 06:13 PM
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I rode an old C'dale R400 for a long while. The only thing I upgraded initially were the wheels. Even though they were cheap, they were better than what came on it. Then I switched out my components to some used Ultegra with a double instead of the Sora Triple that came on it.

But like it was said. Comfort is you priority.
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Old 07-31-09, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by TGilmore View Post
I just bought a Felt F85. So far I am really happy w/ the bike. Curious what the members of BF think about the F85 for a first road bike. Anyway, what would be the first thing to upgrade. I would like to start upgrading next spring for a lighter and faster bike.

Thanks,

Tyson G
it's a good 2000-mile starter bike. If you get that far in a year, sell it and then either buy or build a faster/lighter bike. it's not worth upgrading an F85.
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Old 07-31-09, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Ed Holland View Post
Wait a bit, ride a lot and see if there's something you'd like to change once you get comfortable and used to riding.

Ed
+1 to Ed

My old Cannondale runs faster than I could actually ride it. If you need to upgrade, try upgrading your cardiovascular system

That's my problem at the moment. The climb drives me nuts, and hopefully my new b-day gift (a compact double) could ease me in to my own upgrade.
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Old 07-31-09, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by dalava View Post
it's a good 2000-mile starter bike. If you get that far in a year, sell it and then either buy or build a faster/lighter bike. it's not worth upgrading an F85.
Why do you think an F85 is only good for "2000 miles / year"?
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Old 07-31-09, 07:48 PM
  #11  
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Ride it for a while first and just focus on upgrading your cycling fitness, when you're starting out and are on a decent bike not much is going to be that significant of an upgrade. If you have comfort issues get those sorted, otherwise give the bike loads of miles and enjoy.
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Old 07-31-09, 09:14 PM
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Be assured, the answers on this thread are not meant to put down your interest in cycling and bikes. The world of cycling is full of shiny things that distract and tempt us into believing there's more to be had through equipment. Never more is this true than when you're fresh to cycling.

As one develops as a rider, you find out what sort of fit you like, how you want a bike to feel, what gear ratios suit your strength and local geography and the types of ride you prefer. Eventually you may want another bike, or even start collecting them. It's a fun journey whichever road you take

Cheers,

Ed
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Old 07-31-09, 09:27 PM
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As others have said, ride it a lot and you'll work out for yourself what you'd like to change over time. No need to upgrade for upgrade's sake.
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Old 07-31-09, 11:41 PM
  #14  
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Thanks to all that responded. My biggest issue right now is my back. I've got a bad back, and I can only go 15-20 miles before it really tightens up. I'm working on my core to help out my back. I joined the local bike club and I went for my first 30 mile ride. If it wasn't for the back problems, I could have ridden longer. Generally, how long does it take to get in "ride shape"? I try to ride every day for 15-20 miles. Anyway, thanks for the advice.

Tyson
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Old 08-01-09, 05:38 AM
  #15  
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Originally Posted by TGilmore View Post
I just bought a Felt F85. So far I am really happy w/ the bike. Curious what the members of BF think about the F85 for a first road bike. Anyway, what would be the first thing to upgrade. I would like to start upgrading next spring for a lighter and faster bike.

Thanks,

Tyson G
my rules:

1. all bikes have the same terminal velocity ... when you throw them out of a plane at 10000ft.
2. faster bike = faster rider.
3. better bike = same pain at higher speed.
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Old 08-01-09, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
Why do you think an F85 is only good for "2000 miles / year"?
Just saying that if you just start road cycling and put 2000 miles in the first year on the F85, the chances are pretty high that you want to upgrade to a whole different bike.
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Old 08-01-09, 08:09 AM
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Rider more and harder for a faster bike.
Don't sell it. An extra bike is always a good bike. You will never get close to what you paid for it and will be sorry you sold it later.

What do you hope to gain by a faster, lighter bike?
What sort of riding do you do now and want to do in the future?
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Old 08-01-09, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by TGilmore View Post
Thanks to all that responded. My biggest issue right now is my back. I've got a bad back, and I can only go 15-20 miles before it really tightens up. I'm working on my core to help out my back. I joined the local bike club and I went for my first 30 mile ride. If it wasn't for the back problems, I could have ridden longer. Generally, how long does it take to get in "ride shape"? I try to ride every day for 15-20 miles. Anyway, thanks for the advice.

Tyson
That would seem very difficult to speculate - depends on age I'm sure. Give it a few weeks/couple of months to look for significant improvements and see how it goes.
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Old 08-01-09, 09:03 AM
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Great advice from most the folks here...Yeah dial in comfort. You might like a longer stem...or a shorter stem. You might also consider using a 25MM Continental Gatorskin tire if you can fit it in your fork.

I find the Continental 25MM tire to be wider and more comfortable than any 23MM tire that I have tried. While tire selection can be subjective, it is a well known fact that wider tires will have less rolling resistance.
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Old 08-01-09, 09:05 AM
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If you are new and really happy with the bike why worry about upgrading. Ride it and change things that bother you.
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Old 08-01-09, 09:25 AM
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I know the urge to buy toys for the bike (I wish I could justify switching to Rival, but that would be absurd at < 200 miles), but instead of doing that, I've been slowly doing things like switching to Gatorskins, getting bibshorts and a jersey, adding lights, and so forth. Next spring, this bike will get its fatter tires put back on and I'll acquire/ build a substantially nicer bike, having established exactly what I want in one.

And meantime, ride the bejeesus out of that thing!
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Old 08-01-09, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by dalava View Post
Just saying that if you just start road cycling and put 2000 miles in the first year on the F85, the chances are pretty high that you want to upgrade to a whole different bike.
Say, does that mean I need a new bike soon? I got a Felt S32 about 2 months ago and will have 1100 miles on it probably Monday or Tuesday of this week. I really believe I need an AR Team Issue, but I have to convince the wife that the rent payments can really wait 8 months or so.

Actually, I am selling some of my stuff to fund a new bike purchase, but since I want one before this year is out I doubt it'll be that one.
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Old 08-01-09, 11:14 AM
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Wider tires = less rolling resistance?
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Old 08-01-09, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by TGilmore View Post
Thanks to all that responded. My biggest issue right now is my back. I've got a bad back, and I can only go 15-20 miles before it really tightens up. I'm working on my core to help out my back. I joined the local bike club and I went for my first 30 mile ride. If it wasn't for the back problems, I could have ridden longer. Generally, how long does it take to get in "ride shape"? I try to ride every day for 15-20 miles. Anyway, thanks for the advice.

Tyson
Depends on what you mean by "ride shape".
You will get stronger by riding but to get stronger, faster, etc. you have to "train" and it hurts but the payoff is worth it IMO.
Focus on your core this year. Let your body adjust to riding, let your legs, heart, etc. adapt to riding. During the winter work on core strength exercises for your back...with doctors, etc. help if you have back problems. If you can afford it buy a resistance trainer for your bike so you can ride through the winter months.
Local clubs generally have different "pace" group rides...slow, moderate, fast and "take no prisoners". You don't say what the group ride pace was and that would be helpful...what was the average speed, were there accelerations, etc.
More info is always better than less info.
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Old 08-01-09, 02:55 PM
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A 1000miles later you'll figure out what to upgrade first...I'm guessing seat, stem, handlebars...
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