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

sofride bikes

Old 09-17-00, 02:48 PM
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I met someone on a ride this weekend riding a Sofride bike. They have the suspended seat. She was raving about the comfort and ride/performance of this bike. I wasnot familiar with it but took it out for a teast and found it to be surprisingly comfortable. Does anyone have any experience or knowledge about this bike? i'm in the market for a road bike and want to consider comfort and performance. I've been quite happy on my mt. bike but am doing more and more road riding including a century next month. Any infois greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-22-00, 05:47 PM
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We've built a lot of Softride bikes. There are some distinct advantages and disadvantages to the 'beam' design. First, it's a totally uncomplicated suspension: no maintainence and no worn out parts. It works very well for low amplitude bumps, such as those that would be found on most roads. Also, since the beam is made from carbon it doesn't transmit much of the high frequency 'road noise' vibrations, which is nice on your sensitive bits.

The downside comes from added weight, increased lateral flex, and reduced pedalling efficency. Depending on your application these factors may be totally out weighed by the added comfort. If you're planning on racing or are very concerned with performace in cornerring and seated pedalling, a regular frame with a carbon fork would likely be a better choice.

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Old 09-25-00, 06:49 PM
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I rode in one of the MS 150 rides this past weekend, and spent a little time riding with a gentleman n his mid 60's who had a Softride. He said he loved the comfort of the bike, but lately was questioning whether titanium in a more traditional configuration would give him many of Softride's advantages without the compromises mentioned in the previous reply.
Nevertheless, any bike that would keep me doing 150-milers in my 60s is OK in my book!
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Old 01-29-01, 09:53 PM
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Speaking of these frame style, I recently purchased a Trek Y-77. I'm now in the position to build a very nice bike that can be fast and take home many a first place rides. However, you'll find that a new regulation (as of Jan 1) has outlawed and now prevents the use of a 'floating beam' frame.

So to buy a bike similar to a ZIPP, Softride or the Trek Y-66/77 series puts you in the position to only train at your leisure with the bike.

** I stand corrected. The frame is allowed in USCF events. Just not UCI events! **

[Edited by Spinergy77 on Feb 14th at 12:52 PM]
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Old 03-15-01, 08:58 PM
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I came very close to purchasing a softride. But I was warned against it due to performance issues. Such as added weight, and pedal efficiency.
Old 04-02-01, 07:48 PM
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The bike only gives you suspention for your bum. How is this better than a good (such as U.S.E.) suspention seat post?

How come no one makes soft-tail road bikes? It seems like a beter design if you want a suspention raod frame because it has flex in the chain stays so the pedals are isolated from the road vibrations also.
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Old 04-03-01, 02:29 AM
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Rear-end road supension designs have included curly stays (Hetchins), and bending stays (Moots).

Complex linkage mechanisms like of MTBs are a toal waste of time on the road. They weight too much and even the best bounces around too much to attack a hill or make a break with a sprint. Attatching luggage racks that can take a touring load is very difficult and they are not fixable by the road when they go wrong. They only respond to high amplitude bumps, not the road buzz which is the real cause of discomfort on the road.

The case for full suspension road bikes just doesnt stack up.
Road forks, steel or carbon absorb a surprising amount of shock, and the thinner more compliant frame of a road bike does much to absorb vibration. My major complaint of MTBs on the road is that the fixed forks they come with are simply too stiff.
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