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Thread: Upgrade vs N+1

  1. #1
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    Upgrade vs N+1

    Hello, new member looking for some advice.

    I currently have a 2017 Domane ALR 4 Disc, which I use as a daily commuter. I really like the fit of this bike, but it feels a bit heavy and sluggish.

    I also have a Giant Defy Advanced 1. I use this for long weekend rides, for pure enjoyment. This bike feels zippy and climbs well, but I'd kind of like to sell this and get a Domane SL 6 Disc. There are several reasons:
    1. I'd like hydraulic brakes, and this is mechanical
    2. I really enjoy the fit of my Domane ALR
    3. The extra plushness of the Domane is appealing for long rides
    4. I enjoy Treks aesthetics

    Now, I have a number of options. My first thought was to simply sell the Defy and buy the Domane SL 6 disc. This is option 1, but it feels kind of gluttonous.

    Option 2: use that money to instead upgrade the Defy. Less excited, but probably more cost efficient.

    Option 3: sell the Defy, and go nuts upgrading the Domane ALR 4, have one bike that I ride every where... commuting and weekend rides alike. I always though that it was the frame itself that was heavy, but looking at Treks site, the frame is really only about a half pound heavier than an SL disc frame set. So it's really all components. I could upgrade from tiagra to ultegra, get better wheels, swap out the handlebars etc, and really whittle down the weight. Sure, it's not carbon, but I think those upgrades would make it much nicer, and I'd be riding a good bike always, instead of having an OK bike for commuting and a nice bike for the weekend.

    I don't know... I'm torn. The SL 6 Disc is sexy, and for bad weather (I commute rain or shine, year round) it might be good to have a commuter and a "nice" bike, and to keep them seperate.

    I know the knee jerk is "N+1!!!", but in all honesty, what would you do? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Forever a Student
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    Sell.

    Buy.

    Unless you can adjust the fit accordingly and upgrade so that both bikes match fit identically.

    It's about the fit and comfort at the end of the day.

    Light or heavy, the fit and comfort should be priority.
    use a torque wrench

  3. #3
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    If your bike feels heavy and sluggish, it's likely the tire quality and/or size and/or geometry as it relates to handling not the weight.
    Getting another Domane that's lighter or making the current one lighter won't really change anything.

    Having a junky bike to abuse, put fenders, tough tires and wheels, and maybe a rack on for commuting in bad weather and a separate nice go-fast bike makes sense to me. Nothing you're thinking about makes any sense to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    If your bike feels heavy and sluggish, it's likely the tire quality and/or size and/or geometry as it relates to handling not the weight.
    I agree with this and would recommend trying a good set of supple tires before doing anything.
    Too old to ride plastic

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    Nothing you're thinking about makes any sense to me.
    :'(

    To clarify though, the handling isn't sluggish... accelerating feels sluggish to me. With the Defy (25c tires, to be fair) each pedal stroke feels like it propels me forward. With the ALR(32c), it feels less efficient. Would this come down entirely to tires? Would wheels be the next consideration?
    Last edited by bikesAreNice; 08-18-2017 at 08:16 AM. Reason: Missed a parenthesis

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikesAreNice View Post
    :'(

    To clarify though, the handling isn't sluggish... accelerating feels sluggish to me. With the Defy (25c tires, to be fair) each pedal stroke feels like it propels me forward. With the ALR(32c), it feels less efficient. Would this come down entirely to tires? Would wheels be the next consideration?
    Inexpensive test : put your 25mm tires on the Domane and see if it stills feels sluggish.

  7. #7
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    Only you know your budget and what you can afford. Get the most you can for your money. That being said, I think what's going to make you happiest/most excited is to sell the Defy and get the Domane. I agree with others that the weight of your bike is probably contributing to the sluggishness as is the fact that lots of alloy bikes don't exactly take off like a scalded cat. The SL6 will be lighter, but if you check the Trek forum, you will see it is still a fairly heavy bike. Despite this, everyone I have talked to and or read about their experience on the bike, love the Domane SL. They all say it rides like a lighter bike. However, if you really want to do something big and have it all, get the most affordable Domane SLR you can (complete bike or frameset). People have been able to build that bike roughly 16 lbs fairly easily.
    Every climb has its end, for verily with difficulty there is relief...

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    The stock Domane wheelset is a porker, as are most 32c tires. That's what makes it feel heavy. Upgrade the wheels and tires and it'll feel fast. Or replace the whole thing with the SL6 because that one already has light wheels. Sell the Giant either way. If there's no theft risk, I don't see the point in riding a 'beater' to work. You'll be doing the same maintenance either way.

  9. #9
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    without getting into specifics. i'm against adding to the steed unless the new bike serves a different purpose,i have a fold up commuter bike a road bike and a gravel bike. they're built with very different riding in mind. my sole duplication is a road bike purchased back in 2002 which i need to get rid of but somehow never do

    if an existing bike would be pretty much interchangeable with the new one i don't see the point.

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    when i switched from mavic to dura ace on my colnago the ride felt way more lively and quick. i won't pretend to be able to quantify it but i do enjoy how it makes the bike feel. climbs were more enjoyable almost immediately. my tire choice hasn't changed in almost two decades unless you count the manufacturer freshening up the line

  11. #11
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    ugh 2 Domane with disc? too redundant IMO

  12. #12
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    The IsoSpeed on the carbon Domane will work better than the aluminum one, so if you like the plushness of the AL2, you will love the SL6. I would buy the SL6, keeping the Defy 1 as a backup unless you have no room for it, need the money, or you feel that N+1 > D-1.
    Life is short... enjoy the ride.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexdi View Post
    The stock Domane wheelset is a porker, as are most 32c tires. That's what makes it feel heavy. Upgrade the wheels and tires and it'll feel fast.
    This! Those stock wheels weigh 2100 grams I'd bet, not to mention the tires. Put a set of 4000SII Continentals on there with 1500-1600 gram wheels on there and it will feel like a different bike.
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  14. #14
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    ^ Yup. Or see if you can test ride a wheelset from a local bike shop.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikesAreNice View Post
    :'(

    To clarify though, the handling isn't sluggish... accelerating feels sluggish to me. With the Defy (25c tires, to be fair) each pedal stroke feels like it propels me forward. With the ALR(32c), it feels less efficient. Would this come down entirely to tires? Would wheels be the next consideration?
    Read the word in your post that I have bolded. Now, read it again. This points to rotating weight or more specifically, rims and tires.

    That being said, slower acceleration may make you feel slower. However, once you are up to speed, you will not feel any difference, correct?

    So in the end, if you really need to feel faster, you need to reduce rotating weight. However, if you are expecting this to transform yourself into passing your buddies on hills that you couldn't pass them on before, you will be disappointed.

    The only way to become a faster rider is training.

    However, feel can be an important part of the bike experience and your enjoyment of the bike. And that is important too.

    In your case, it's very simple. You have bikes with 32c or 25c tires. Swap tires and see if the "sluggishness" follows the tires before you start spending $$$.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by MMsRepBike View Post
    Unless you can adjust the fit accordingly and upgrade so that both bikes match fit identically.

    It's about the fit and comfort at the end of the day.

    Light or heavy, the fit and comfort should be priority.
    This!
    “Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.” -- Aaron Levenstein

    "Beware of geeks bearing formulas."
    -- Warren Buffett

    "Education is what you get when you read the fine print. Experience is what you get when you don't. -- Pete Seeger



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