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are aero bikes just as comfortable

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

are aero bikes just as comfortable

Old 10-10-11, 02:41 PM
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panamapete
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are aero bikes just as comfortable

just wondering in general as long as fitted properly is an aero bike just as comfortable as a regular road bike, (ie) would a century ride be just as possible or harder?
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Old 10-10-11, 02:47 PM
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It really depends. For the most part, the answer is yes. Some will say that these new aero bikes like the Cervelo S5 and the Felt AR series are not good for long rides, but I don't really see why. A bike is a stiff, rigid structure regardless of how a bike company spins the marketing. Even the "vertically compliant" cobbles bikes like the Cervelo R3/5 and the Specialized Roubaix are stiff race bikes at heart. If you can do a century on a Cervelo R3 you can certainly do a century on the aero S5. The fit and choice of wheels are going to impact the ride quality more than the frame design.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:10 PM
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Choice of tires/pressure is #1 factor in comfort.

Aero frames typically limit themselves in max tire width, therefore they limit comfort. I run 23c tires, but the rear sometimes scrapes my seat tube.

I bought 25c tires for training but they don't fit my current bike, and I'm having my other frame altered so it won't fit on it (it should fit on the front wheel though). I'm just saving them for now.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:40 PM
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Great point about tires... huge difference between certain types of road tires. And you can make them all ride like hell if you're not that heavy yet pump them to max pressure in erroneous pursuit of optimal rolling resistance and handling.

After tires, then it depends on your conditions. Most people ride fairly good roads and wouldn't notice the difference between a S5 and a Roubaix. Most people don't need the thick poofy gel tape that Specialized puts standard on their endurance road bikes, and you never see on pro bikes outside of the cobblestone classics. Most people don't spend any time on gravel washboard roads.

But if you do ride in those poor conditions, the tires, frame material, frame design and even bar tape can matter a lot.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:45 PM
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by aero, do you mean TT?
I just did 38 fairly easy miles on my 'new to me' tt bike, yesterday.
with the forward position and all (still inside UCI specs) I don;t think I'd choose to do 100 on it.
76 deg ST, would need a huge setback post to get it road comfortable for me.
I think I;d be more whipped than usual after a 100.
that said, it handled a lot more comfortably than I expected and was pretty good on descents.
wheel and tire pressure, as always have a huge effect on ride.
I'll plan to ride it once a week til the coming new season, but even so it might hang for 8-10 riding days before it comes off the rack again.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
by aero, do you mean TT?
no, he meant aero road bike like a Cervelo S5, Felt AR series, Specialized Venge, etc.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:50 PM
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im really interested in an ar5 not so much the aero prospect of it, but i just really like the way it looks, but i still want to be able to do a century if i wanted... thats why im asking
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Old 10-10-11, 03:52 PM
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and im already on 23c, so width wise im comfortable with that, but at 200 lbs, maybe i could back down on the psi a bit
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Old 10-10-11, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
Most people ride fairly good roads and wouldn't notice the difference between a S5 and a Roubaix.
I don't know about the Roubaix, but the difference between an S2 and R3 is unmistakable. I could go just as far on either, although I'd rather do it on the R3.

Panamapete - do a long test ride in the AR5, and see what you think of it.
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Old 10-10-11, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
Panamapete - do a long test ride in the AR5, and see what you think of it.
trying to find one has been harder than i thought i took out a 54cm ar4 and felt really stretched out on it, almost like it had wider bars then my current 54, the stem is the same size, but i just felt stretched out and wider in the arms. so im thinking maybe a 51,
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Old 10-10-11, 04:34 PM
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I've done plenty of long rides on my S2 with no complaints. 7ish hours or so is the longest I think..
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Old 10-10-11, 04:37 PM
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sweet that makes me feel better!
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Old 10-10-11, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by panamapete View Post
trying to find one has been harder than i thought i took out a 54cm ar4 and felt really stretched out on it, almost like it had wider bars then my current 54, the stem is the same size, but i just felt stretched out and wider in the arms. so im thinking maybe a 51,
frame size and handlebars aren't really related. get the people at the shop to help you out. 54 might still be the right frame size...you might just need narrower bars.

felt's bikes (at least the F series, and i'm guessing the AR series too) have pretty aggressive geometry, though, so i wouldn't be surprised if you felt stretched out lengthwise as well.
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Old 10-10-11, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by panamapete View Post
trying to find one has been harder than i thought i took out a 54cm ar4 and felt really stretched out on it, almost like it had wider bars then my current 54, the stem is the same size, but i just felt stretched out and wider in the arms. so im thinking maybe a 51,
This might be asking a lot, but is there any chance the shop would let you ride this with a narrower set of bars? They'd have to do a lot of work, so they might not be into it, but...

If not, you can probably at least ride some similar bikes?
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Old 10-10-11, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by panamapete View Post
im really interested in an ar5 not so much the aero prospect of it, but i just really like the way it looks, but i still want to be able to do a century if i wanted... thats why im asking
+1 Same here.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by panamapete View Post
just wondering in general as long as fitted properly is an aero bike just as comfortable as a regular road bike, (ie) would a century ride be just as possible or harder?
It depends ... on you ... and on the terrain.
Personally I find aerobars and thus aerobikes to be much more comfortable than any other.
But that's just me.
Don't be riding your aerobike on difficult terrain though.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:36 PM
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My Felt AR1 and Cervelo S2 aren't any less comfortable than any other bike i've owned.
they vary in stiffness and weight, but other than that, just as comfortable.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:36 PM
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I'm riding a TT bike set up as a road bike, it's far harsher than any aero road bike out there and I did a comfortable 118 miles on Saturday.

All you need are nice tires at the correct PSI, a nice saddle, and some comfortable handlebar tape, nothing else matters that much for comfort.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by rpeterson View Post
I'm riding a TT bike set up as a road bike, it's far harsher than any aero road bike out there and I did a comfortable 118 miles on Saturday.
i have been toying with the idea of doing that...one thing holding me back was the notion that the slacker head tube would make the bike flop over too much when cornering. what say you?
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Old 10-10-11, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Inertianinja View Post
i have been toying with the idea of doing that...one thing holding me back was the notion that the slacker head tube would make the bike flop over too much when cornering. what say you?
Unless you have a TT frame around that you don't feel like selling I'd say just get a road frame.

Head tube angle is frame dependent though, both my TT frames are actually steeper than my 2 other road bikes due to me riding small bikes, so I'd say it doesn't make any difference at all.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by rpeterson View Post
Unless you have a TT frame around that you don't feel like selling I'd say just get a road frame.

Head tube angle is frame dependent though, both my TT frames are actually steeper than my 2 other road bikes due to me riding small bikes, so I'd say it doesn't make any difference at all.
which aero frames are you riding?
i saw a dude riding a Trek Speed Concept with road bars, thought it looked interesting. Both my bikes ended up being aero frames, so it's not a pressing issue. just wondering.
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Old 10-10-11, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Inertianinja View Post
which aero frames are you riding?
i saw a dude riding a Trek Speed Concept with road bars, thought it looked interesting. Both my bikes ended up being aero frames, so it's not a pressing issue. just wondering.
My roadied TT bike is a Planet-X Exocet, my tt bike is a Cervelo P3.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:15 PM
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For the OP - the frame won't make or break you on a century. I got my frame with the main emphasis on 60 minute crits, rock solid bottom bracket, super solid steering. They're aluminum frames, built for rigidity (the frames I have are 1450 and 1650 grams), but I am good on them for many hours at a time.

If you like the way the AR looks and you're not doing a century every week, go get it. You'll find that bike fit and your fitness will become a huge factor in comfort, more so than measurable shock absorbing characteristics.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by panamapete View Post
just wondering in general as long as fitted properly is an aero bike just as comfortable as a regular road bike?
yep.
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Old 10-10-11, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by rpeterson View Post
My roadied TT bike is a Planet-X Exocet, my tt bike is a Cervelo P3.
pics? don't be a tease
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