Old v/s Modern bikes

Discussion in 'General Cycling Discussions' started by johnnyb47, 3 Dec 2018.

  1. johnnyb47

    johnnyb47 Über Member

    Location:
    Wales
    Hi.
    Time for another pointless waffle :-) :-)
    As you may already know ,I got back into cycling a few years back after buying a cheap but very sentimental old 80s Peugeot steel bike. After putting many miles on it I decided to splash out and buy a modern Specialized bike. The Peugeot got hung on the wall for most of the summer whilst I got to grips with the specialized bike. It was nice to have the lightweight and modern gears of the specialized allez elite and have thoroughly enjoyed using it over the summer building up my fitness, and seeing new places on it. Before I bought it though, I genuinely thought my cycling would be transformed by it's lightweight frame and modern gearing, but in truth it wasn't that much of the leap I hoped for. As much as the pros there's also a few con's. I think comfort was the biggest draw back of the Specialized. Don't get me wrong , I can ride the specialized all day long, but the old Steel framed Peugeot really does feel so much plusher on a long ride. Also as for thinking my new bike would propel along the road at lightening speed didn't really materialise either. I would say I cycle maybe 1 mph faster on average on it overall. The last few days gone I've decided to use the Peugeot over the coming winter months purely because it's now got full mudguards fitted. I haven't used this bike for a good few months now ,and the last few rides I've done so far have really brought home how nice old school steel bikes really are. Gears are always perfectly lined up thanks to simple friction down tube shifters ,and that muted resonance you get through the springy frame. It weighs in quite heavy compared to the Specialized but I still averaged a respectable 17 mph avg tonight on it. If you've always had new modern type bikes I really recommend you try an old school 80s steel bike. I think you would be pleasantly surprised at how nice they feel and ride :-) :-)
    No doubt when the warmer dryer weather makes it's appearance again next year, the Specialized will be pressed back into service again.
    All the very best,
    Johnny.
     
  2. Drago

    Drago Guru

    Location:
    Poshamptonshire.
    :popcorn:
     
    BrumJim, Gravity Aided and dave r like this.
  3. galaxy

    galaxy Über Member

    I have old Dawes Galaxy. Always puts a smile on my face. I’m not out for apes these days so I’m happy plodding. Most map my rides on. Strava but that mostly for distance not for speed. Ride what you enjoy. My Boardman is also lovely to ride, just in a different way.
     
    johnnyb47 likes this.
  4. Drago

    Drago Guru

    Location:
    Poshamptonshire.
    The 531 Claud is my second oldest bike, being as its from 1983. I love my modern bikes too, but the Claud is my favourite. It's not better or worse, it's just it's sporty-yet-comfy-and-easy-going nature just suits me.

    My modern Felt is a very close second though, just because of the way it fits me perfectly and responds to rider input. The Claud isn't as sharp, but at my age now the comfort and laid back nature suit me a bit better these days.
     
    johnnyb47 likes this.
  5. Jody

    Jody Über legend of a forum GOD!

    You can't compare a steel framed road bike to a MTB. Have you taken the Peugeot to do some decent off road so you can give them a fair comparison?
     
  6. AndyRM

    AndyRM XOXO

    Location:
    Whitley Bay
    The Allez Elite isn't a MTB.
     
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  7. Jody

    Jody Über legend of a forum GOD!

    It's early doors. I have no idea how I read it as a Specialised MTB :blink: Apologies OP
     
    meta lon, galaxy, AndyRM and 3 others like this.
  8. "Niceness" in a bike takes many forms. The modernity or otherwise of the components can play a part but a lot is down to how the bike fits you and suits your type of riding.
     
  9. mjr

    mjr Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next

    I agree with the OP more or less. The biggest differences to speed seem to be made by aero position and tyres, not the frame material or even finer points of shape, at least not at amateur speeds.
     
    Illaveago and Dogtrousers like this.
  10. MichaelW2

    MichaelW2 Über Member

    The extra stiffness of modern aluminium frames is only an advantage if you apply enough force to overcome the stiffness of old school steel frames. For Just Riding Along that rarely happens so you end up with stiffness in excess of your needs. Obvs does not apply to powerful sprinters who do gain from modern increased stiffness.
     
    Blue Hills likes this.
  11. IanSmithCSE

    IanSmithCSE Senior Member

    Good morning,

    I certainly agree that older bikes can be great to ride, although I wouldn't want go back as far as the

    https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/bsa-tour-de-france.239856/

    BSA restoration thread.

    I had a similar bike as a youth, a Raleigh Shadow, same frame, brakes and wheels but 5 speed, this was during the period that Raleigh, BSA, Sun, Carlton etc were all just different paint jobs.

    For years I have avoided progress and mostly ride a 531 steel/downtube shifters era machine, but 6 months ago I was tempted by a lonely looking used full carbon/Di2 jobbie.

    I really wanted to see what I was missing, I now happily swap between the two, the lighter frame is a noticeable improvement but I am equally happy with the steel frame, but Di2 is a genuine, real upgrade, for me at least.

    The ease of changing gear for just a few seconds as I go down a dip and then back up again means that I ride faster but with less rests.

    Although I can't imagine it ever being Shimano's intention, changing onto the small chainring when approaching a busy roundabout and then changing back up even before leaving the roundabout is a real nice way to negotiate it without being knocked off by impatient cars. :-)

    The sad thing is that the only real improvement, for my type of riding, is the also the most expensive, carbon frames and steel frames are pretty much on par price wise. Clipless and toe clip pedal are also similar prices assuming you believe that clipless is an improvement. :-)

    Di2 requires at least Ultegra components, as there is no sign of Di2 105. :-(

    As a piece of useless info; a couple of years ago I put a new Ultegra front mech on the steel bike, when they introduced the long pivot arm, and it is a really fast change with downtube shifters and may be worth considering for your Peugoet if you use both chain rings often.

    Bye

    Ian
     
    Alan O, Pat "5mph" and johnnyb47 like this.
  12. Smokin Joe

    Smokin Joe Legendary Member

    Pretty irrelevant these days as steel frames are either cheap gas pipe specials or very expensive quality frames.
     
  13. Blue Hills

    Blue Hills Guru

    Location:
    London
    Don't know if true but the answer is to go second hand for that nice ride. Two of my fave frames cost £30 and £21. The impatient seller of the second was going to send it to the tip if I didn't take it off their hands.
     
  14. Globalti

    Globalti Legendary Member

    Interesting OP, I came back to road cycling when I found an abandoned carbon bike so my steel bike memories are 40 years away.
     
    Gravity Aided and johnnyb47 like this.
  15. Old steel frames can be had quite cheap, even 531, and still ride well. I have returned to all steel for my 26" tourer, a rather old Trek 950, a lugged MTB frame with quite similar geometry to the Trek 520, with 1 1/8 True Temper Cro-Moly tubing, double butted. I don't think Trek has taken that much trouble with a steel MTB since.
     
    Illaveago and Blue Hills like this.
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