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Please help-buying first road bike!

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

Please help-buying first road bike!

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Old 03-05-05, 04:13 PM
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longoria
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Please help-buying first road bike!

I am looking to buy my first road bike. I've been cycling indoors for a long time and it's time to start riding outside. I plan to do two centuries and perhaps a mini-triatholon this summer. I am looking at the Giant OCR1 and the Specialized Sequoia Elite. Is there a big difference between the 105 and the ultegra components for a beginner like me? Any benefit to the Zertz addition in the frame (specialized) The Giant has Ultegra components for $899, Specialized with 105 components at $999. i have ridden both and both are quite comfortable.

also, any quick measurements to determine size of bike, tried both XS and Med.
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Old 03-05-05, 09:42 PM
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roccoz18
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I just bought a 2004 Felt s25 for $1,100. It has Ultegra derailers, Dura Ace shifters, an aluminum frame with carbon cranks & fork. Outstanding features for the price! Most of the Felt bikes are nicely equipped and reasonably priced. If you want to save even more, look for a new 2003 or 2004 model (from any manufacturer.) Cycle shops like R & A Cycles (racycles.com) in Brooklyn, NY or The Pedallers Bike Shop (www.pedallers.com) in Rochester, NY offer previous year bikes (steals & deals/specials/closeouts) at greatly reduced prices with the components you are looking for. Good luck in your quest for the bike that will make you most comfortable!!!
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Old 03-06-05, 06:56 PM
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Specialized sequoia is what I originally first looked at. It is a little more comfort oriented than the OCR. If you can find an 04 Specialized Roubaix give it a ride. I liked it as well. I ended up with a bike that was nearly 2X what I wanted to start with ($749 Allez Sport 04) but they sold it and I couldn't swallow the $100 price increase for an 05 and started looking at other bikes. Ended up with a Klein Reve 55cm.

Do a search on sizing. There are tons of posts on it. There are also some good websites like wrenchscience.com. I'm 5'9 with a 32 inseam and was on the Medium OCR, 54 Allez and Roubaix, and 54 treks. I got a 55 Klein and it was perfect for me.

Good luck and search is your friend!
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Old 03-07-05, 10:17 AM
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Bruce Lowekamp
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Originally Posted by longoria
Is there a big difference between the 105 and the ultegra components for a beginner like me?
No.

Try out a lot of bikes. Maybe more important, go to different LBSes. Buy a bike you like from a store you that treats you well. A good store should spend some time making sure you get a bike that fits you, too.

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Old 03-07-05, 01:11 PM
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[QUOTE=longoria] Is there a big difference between the 105 and the ultegra components for a beginner like me? Any benefit to the Zertz addition in the frame (specialized) The Giant has Ultegra components for $899, Specialized with 105 components at $999. i have ridden both and both are quite comfortable.

QUOTE]


I'm also a "beginner like you" and I can't really notice a difference between the two shifters. A properly adjusted 105 will shift better than a poorly adjusted Ultegra, and I don't think the small weight savings would be worth the price. I test rode a Specialized Allez Comp, and I can say that the zertz things in the frame are a little overrated. I didn't really notice a difference. The Giant looks like an incredible value; I'm really happy with my OCR 3, which uses the same frame but has a lower parts spec. Happy searching and I hope you get a great bike.

Also, if you're looking to do some fast riding or entry level racing, you might want to try the Specialized Allez Elite ($1150 at my LBS). It is really light and has good components, but is probably a little less comfortable than either the Giant or Sequoia.
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Old 03-07-05, 03:42 PM
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I agree with the opinions on the components. I have a Sequoia Elite and the 105 is just fine. The bike is very comfortable and would be perfect for the centuries. If you are a competitor you might want something more racy for the tri but if you are just participating the Sequioa is plenty fast. The Zertz does help with damping vibration but I cant say how much of it is the zertz or the carbon stays and fork. Also, dont know about the pricing on the Giant but the pricing you mention on the Sequoia sounds like the base bike, not the Elite. I think the base has some but not all 105. If that pricing is correct for an Elite that is way cheap. I paid $1250 for my 2005. Good luck to you and enjoy!
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Old 03-07-05, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by longoria
Is there a big difference between the 105 and the ultegra components for a beginner like me?
No.

The only justification I can find for going above 105 is if you are racing (or riding in some other extremely competetive events). Otherwise you're paying a lot of money to save a few grams and have an almost imperceptably quicker shift.

I think those are both excellent choices for someone in your situation. It's nice to see that you've considered your riding style and didn't go for a quick, sexy racing bike that would beat the crap out of your body on a century.
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