New bike: what is key, what’s silly?

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Chuckschreiner

Regular
Location
Los Angeles
Personally I don’t really care about wheels as long as they have enough spokes. Deep rims for example are to my eyes an abomination!

Shimano hoods are uncomfortable for me and I can’t brake confidently. All my bikes with gears have Sram. 3 have been built for me. Didn’t add anything to cost. It’s a US company so I’d be surprised if it adds to the build

This only goes for road bike brifters. Not flat bar controls
So you order a bike to spec? Not so much custom built from scratch but from a bike company thru a dealer to spec?
 

vickster

Legendary Member
So you order a bike to spec? Not so much custom built from scratch but from a bike company thru a dealer to spec?
I’ve done both with small companies that bespoke build from one of their framesets
I don’t have bikes from big companies like Trek anymore (partly as I like Sram and partly because I like something different and to support UK based companies)

One bike I sourced all the parts and a friend put it all together (I don’t have the skills, time nor interest to do myself)
 

raleighnut

Guru
Location
On 3 Wheels
I keep reading about obsolescence but am not sure what happens - certain types of components go out of fashion and can’t be replaced?
There's not much on a bike to go 'obsolete', certain 'high level' components will be upgraded and they might not be available but if you look lower down the levels that technology will be used and will often be more robust and reliable but a touch heavier whilst the high level is where the new tech comes into use (at a price)

I'd say 105 is at a comparable level of quality to where Dura-Ace was 5 years ago it's just not the latest 'bling'.
 

John_S

Über Member
Hi Chuckschreiner,

Being in the US it could be worth getting in contact with Breadwinner Cycles because they could talk to you, listen to your needs and hopefully recommend something to suit. Also a lot of their bikes (in my humble opinion but I appreciate that beauty is in the eye of the beholder) look absolutely fantastic!

https://breadwinnercycles.com

Also if you have the time and could get to it another place to go looking for a bike would be the North American Handmade Bicycle Show (NAHBS) because I'm sure that you could find a few bikes of interest there and even if you didn't find your perfect bike I'm sure that it would still be a good day out.

https://www.nahbs.com

Good luck finding the right bike for you!

John
 

vickster

Legendary Member
Hi Chuckschreiner,

Being in the US it could be worth getting in contact with Breadwinner Cycles because they could talk to you, listen to your needs and hopefully recommend something to suit. Also a lot of their bikes (in my humble opinion but I appreciate that beauty is in the eye of the beholder) look absolutely fantastic!

https://breadwinnercycles.com



John
Very handsome but might be a bit spendy for the OP at nearly $3k for just the frameset for a road/gravel bike. Will end up being a $5k plus bike with a decent spec
 
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Chuckschreiner

Regular
Location
Los Angeles
One thing I guess is obvious made more clear from reading peoples’ input - what that inflection point of value/price is a personal thing. My conclusion is try several bikes, price points, styles.

And @John_S there is ALWAYS that temptation- just a little nicer, just a little nicer and soon enough what started out as a $2500 thing ends up at $5-6k. Would love to custom create something but just seems like I’m not knowledgeable enough to know how to do that intelligently. But the nahbs sounds like it’d be total fun. I love looking at new bikes and I bet this show would have me drooling.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
One thing I guess is obvious made more clear from reading peoples’ input - what that inflection point of value/price is a personal thing. My conclusion is try several bikes, price points, styles.

And @John_S there is ALWAYS that temptation- just a little nicer, just a little nicer and soon enough what started out as a $2500 thing ends up at $5-6k. Would love to custom create something but just seems like I’m not knowledgeable enough to know how to do that intelligently. But the nahbs sounds like it’d be total fun. I love looking at new bikes and I bet this show would have me drooling.
Dallas isn’t THAT far from LA :biggrin:
 
OP
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Chuckschreiner

Regular
Location
Los Angeles
Personally I would not compromise on having a low enough bottom gear and a saddle that suits me. For me personally these are key to being comfortable and thus enjoying my riding.

After comfort for me it's practicality. I like to have a bit of extra gear and food with me on my rides so I have a rack, and I ride in all weathers so I use mudguards. But these are just things that enable me to enjoy riding.

Enjoyment is the thing. Your keys for enjoyment may be different to mine.
So far, saddle, overall geometry so I am the right amount of upright, and handlebars that mesh with my hands are the keys I am most aware of.

Your point about what I enjoy is right on target. What I like most is enough comfort to ride until I am really worked out, tired. Speed isn’t a big deal (unless I start riding with groups that push it). So keep wondering about aluminum vs carbon frame. The lighter carbon isn’t important but the vibration dampening might be.

Does carbon really dampen the road noticeably?
 

vickster

Legendary Member
So far, saddle, overall geometry so I am the right amount of upright, and handlebars that mesh with my hands are the keys I am most aware of.

Your point about what I enjoy is right on target. What I like most is enough comfort to ride until I am really worked out, tired. Speed isn’t a big deal (unless I start riding with groups that push it). So keep wondering about aluminum vs carbon frame. The lighter carbon isn’t important but the vibration dampening might be.

Does carbon really dampen the road noticeably?
No. Fatter tyres do that more. I’d get a carbon fork though just as it’ll be lighter

Now, if you want comfortable and springy, look at Titanium. There are several well known US brands like Litespeed and Lynskey
 
OP
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Chuckschreiner

Regular
Location
Los Angeles
No. Fatter tyres do that more. I’d get a carbon fork though just as it’ll be lighter

Now, if you want comfortable and springy, look at Titanium. There are several well known US brands like Litespeed and Lynskey
Hmmm. Maybe I’m going to get aluminum frame with all the trimmings. (Titanium seems very pricey but I know little about it specifically - was trying to research last night but zonked out. Walking 10 miles a day with pack for 5 days has its impact. 14 today (23 km)

Ok so another core question: assume fixed budget and that the frame geometry is same for both. Do you put money in frame and get lesser components (except seat remains priority regardless) or do you get aluminum frame and better components?

My instinct is aluminum frame, get quality everything else. Lots of ancillary stuff to biking (tools, clothes, etc)
 

MichaelW2

Veteran
Whenever I go on non cycling holidays I try to hire or borrow a bike for a ride or two. No matter how primitive or heavy the bike is, I always feel better after the ride.
At a big bike show many years ago I tried out about 30 city bikes around the indoor circuit. Most were smile inducing but the Pashley Princess was sublime.
 
Location
London
Spend the money on the frame, without getting suckered into exotica or something produced by an "artiste" would be my advice chuck. Many of the components will be consumables. And lots of pricey components offer little but gramsaving, in my opinion, and may well be less durable. A good frame will last you the rest of your life - if you get into this lark the componentry can be changed/tweaked later. Often at little cost. Ebay is your friend.

My opnion only but i would also go for steel. Aluminium isn't necessarily lighter, or at least in any meaningful way.
 
OP
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Chuckschreiner

Regular
Location
Los Angeles
Spend the money on the frame, without getting suckered into exotica or something produced by an "artiste" would be my advice chuck. Many of the components will be consumables. And lots of pricey components offer little but gramsaving, in my opinion, and may well be less durable. A good frame will last you the rest of your life - if you get into this lark the componentry can be changed/tweaked later. Often at little cost. Ebay is your friend.

My opnion only but i would also go for steel. Aluminium isn't necessarily lighter, or at least in any meaningful way.
I think the way I’ve seen bikes sold in L.A. is the more expensive the frame, the more expensive the rest of the bike. So partly I will be limited by what stores carry.

But looking at aluminum vs carbon, big dip in price and the weight is close. I didn’t look at steel because I assume these are lower end bikes and there is a difference in quality of the components (I had an inexpensive steel bike along the way).

But it seems to me that a good aluminum frame will be great value - IF I can find a bike that meets the key fit criteria, including wider tires.

I take your point about consumables and changing these over time. I also know I want the system to work well under stress. So I don’t know what’s solid and what’s ‘exotica.’

The other thing you mention that really strikes me is weight savings gets expensive when the delta in bike weight is less than a kg overall. My body weight will fluctuate that much (up and down) depending on how much bread I eat ! So light is good but lightest isn’t worth it to me.

PS: only one more day on our 7 day Camino walk. Today was 23 km. It is so much fun to do this with my wife. We are both tired, our feet are tired, but we will be sad when the walk ends. Walking thru rolling hills of varying kinds of forests is simply wonderful.
 
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