The thing is that most TT/tri-specific bikes are now carbon by default, in fact it's almost harder to get an alu TT frame these days. And you cannot get a normal road bike set up quite as well for use with tri-bars; the frame geometry is different. Mind you, you have to get used to the riding position...Assuming flat courses aero beats weight. If you're not goin any longer than olympic then comfort is not really a consideration, so I would be looking at alu. Getting a good aero position is more important than the aero-ness of the bike, so make sure you get the sizing right, and learn to ride in a good aero position.
You just have to keep a constant eye on the Planet-X site - they often have limited time offers. I got my Stealth carbon TT frame for half what was already the sale price, and that was from just happening to check the website...I need to find out when Planet x sales are. He has seen a Trek Speed Concept 2.5 for a good price but reviews are mixed with regards to Apex gearing and specs, although frame seems to be very good. But we'd rather get the right bike for the right price than the wrong bike and spend more in upgrades....
OMG you lucky person!!You just have to keep a constant eye on the Planet-X site - they often have limited time offers. I got my Stealth carbon TT frame for half what was already the sale price, and that was from just happening to check the website...
This is good advice. I actually bought my frame on sale at the same time that I bought a complete second hand TT bike on Kijiji - crappy frame which was not my size but with top quality parts. I stripped the parts, and used them to build my bike around the new PX frame. Result: one mean Stealth machine, at a total cost of about $1000 CAN (or 650 GBP), which would have cost me at least double that all new.Has he not got another bike he could use as a donor and just build up TT frame? Presumably he'll be looking at aero wheels at some point too - again PX comes up trumps if you keep on top of the offers.
They were nothing but awesome with me and always have been. I'll admit I have heard of other experiences though.If you know exactly what you are doing, PX are good, good value for money!
If you need some assistance or require an opinion that is not one of indifference, then I am afraid I can NOT recommend them!
*Speaking only from my own experience
Similar to my issue with them, they would not commit to recommending a size or giving any opinion either way and basically saying "it's your choice". Which already knew, I just wanted an opinion and I had already spoken to them on the phone (twice, including that day) so they knew I was travelling over to them so it wasn't a surprise to them yet they seemed surprised to see me. They had the bike on a turbo and a member of staff assisting me and supposedly sizing me up but the assistant was completely indifferent. Needless to say they lost my business.BTW I've waited for 12 months for Planet-X to tell me what size bike I need, two visits to the shop, 4 phone calls and many emails - nothing.