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  1. #1
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    2014 S3 Question: Long ride comfort?

    Just curious if the new S3 is harsh on the longer rides. I'm told that the improvements to the frame and influences from the R- series have made the S3 more tolerable/less harsh on the long rides (50+ miles). Any opinions out there?

    The S3 is on my short list for the next bike purchase. Debating between it and the Wilier Zero 9.

  2. #2
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    Depends on your size and what you find comfortable. I'm on the previous iteration of the S2 (the one without the R-series influenced seatstays). I'm a bigger guy (clyde) and I find it just about right for me for the short 'n quick as well as the long haul. Granted, I came off of an alu cross frame that I was using as my commuter and road ride...so I'm probably a bit biased to the stiffer side.

    That said, though, I see a lot of S series bikes here on Metric and Century rides as well as the long charity rides.

    If you're lighter or want more vertical compliance, then I think the new S3 will be quite nice. I would suggest you ride both before you choose one...both are good bikes and one will likely "speak" to you more than the other.
    So 8 times wasn't enough and I'm going back again:my participant page for the 2017 Alberta Ride to Conquer Cancer.

    12 Cervelo S2, 09 Knolly Delirium T, ?? Mercury Road Bike, signed '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX

  3. #3
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    Harsh on the longer rides? Long ride comfort? Adjust tire pressures and/or fit wider tires. There's a 1/2" of cushion available versus a few thousandths of an inch through frame compliance.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Harsh on the longer rides? Long ride comfort? Adjust tire pressures and/or fit wider tires. There's a 1/2" of cushion available versus a few thousandths of an inch through frame compliance.
    Mike T. makes a good point....tires and pressure will play a role as well.

    Although I agree you can find some additional comfort with tires (wider / lower pressure), there are limits to what will fit in an S-series frame. That said, though, a tubeless set-up would be that much more comfy ;)
    So 8 times wasn't enough and I'm going back again:my participant page for the 2017 Alberta Ride to Conquer Cancer.

    12 Cervelo S2, 09 Knolly Delirium T, ?? Mercury Road Bike, signed '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX

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    Ok, I'll take that as a yes with a recommendation on tire pressure. Good to know. I'm usually at 110 psi so I'm assuming a bit less than that for the longer rides?

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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    I'm usually at 110 psi so I'm assuming a bit less than that for the longer rides?
    IMO, if you need to be at 110psi then you need tires with more volume. We don't know your weight or tire width. If you are on 23mm tires, go to 25. If you are on 25, go to 28 - if the frame will take it. If you need 28 and the frame won't take it, you're on the wrong frame for you.

    Go to about 90psi and feel the difference.
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    Everything above, up to that blue line, is IMO IMO.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    Just curious if the new S3 is harsh on the longer rides. I'm told that the improvements to the frame and influences from the R- series have made the S3 more tolerable/less harsh on the long rides (50+ miles). Any opinions out there?

    The S3 is on my short list for the next bike purchase. Debating between it and the Wilier Zero 9.

    If you are worried about harsh ride why not research road bikes that target compliant rides? Many of the major bike manufacturers have lines that target this, Trek Domane, Specialized Roubaix, etc

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    I'm on a '14 s2. The long ride comfort is fine to me. A teamate is on an '14 s3 and says the ride is better than the previous design. He had atleast 2 of the previous s2 models.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    IMO, if you need to be at 110psi then you need tires with more volume. We don't know your weight or tire width. If you are on 23mm tires, go to 25. If you are on 25, go to 28 - if the frame will take it. If you need 28 and the frame won't take it, you're on the wrong frame for you.

    Go to about 90psi and feel the difference.
    Not always that easy, Mike. A lot of manufacturers are putting minimum pressures on their tires too. My current tires have a minimum pressure of 105 psi and a max of 120 psi. Finding the right tire and pressure combo certainly help, and if you can go lower pressure it will make the ride smoother.

    Vibration damping wise (which is another part of the comfort), I think Cervelo has done a decent job on the S-series bikes considering they are aero frames meant to be on the stiffer side for racing. Seppo is right too...there are bikes purpose built to be comfy on the long haul...but only Skhan007 can determine if one of them will meet his needs.
    So 8 times wasn't enough and I'm going back again:my participant page for the 2017 Alberta Ride to Conquer Cancer.

    12 Cervelo S2, 09 Knolly Delirium T, ?? Mercury Road Bike, signed '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by MercRidnMike View Post
    Not always that easy, Mike. A lot of manufacturers are putting minimum pressures on their tires too. My current tires have a minimum pressure of 105 psi.
    Is that more for idiot-proofing the tires? I can't imagine another reason for a minimum pressure rating.
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    Mike T's home wheelbuilding site - dedicated to providing Newby wheelbuilder's with motivation, information and resources.

    Everything above, up to that blue line, is IMO IMO.

  11. #11
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    My S2 is comfy for any length ride. I run tubeless at lower pressure than you would clinchers, not sure how much that contributes. I'd look to tires, bars, and saddle for any discomfort issues and forget about the frame.
    Sometimes you eat the bar, and sometimes, well, he eats you.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T. View Post
    Is that more for idiot-proofing the tires? I can't imagine another reason for a minimum pressure rating.
    Possibly in part...could also be to maintain a certain profile (for performance such as rolling resistance or grip) or protect the sidewalls (i.e. if the protective belt is limited).
    So 8 times wasn't enough and I'm going back again:my participant page for the 2017 Alberta Ride to Conquer Cancer.

    12 Cervelo S2, 09 Knolly Delirium T, ?? Mercury Road Bike, signed '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trek_5200 View Post
    If you are worried about harsh ride why not research road bikes that target compliant rides? Many of the major bike manufacturers have lines that target this, Trek Domane, Specialized Roubaix, etc
    True- I'm asking because I really like this particular bike on many levels. The long ride comfort was really my only question/reservation.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by skhan007 View Post
    True- I'm asking because I really like this particular bike on many levels. The long ride comfort was really my only question/reservation.
    Personally, I think it does well and there are ways to soften it up a bit if needed (i.e. tires and pressure). Ultimately, though, it'll come down to a test ride.
    So 8 times wasn't enough and I'm going back again:my participant page for the 2017 Alberta Ride to Conquer Cancer.

    12 Cervelo S2, 09 Knolly Delirium T, ?? Mercury Road Bike, signed '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX

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    Very good! I'm hoping to go to the LBS and test ride the S3 vs. the R3 this weekend!

    Quote Originally Posted by MercRidnMike View Post
    Personally, I think it does well and there are ways to soften it up a bit if needed (i.e. tires and pressure). Ultimately, though, it'll come down to a test ride.

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    I decided to take a long ride on my bike to the LBS, so I would arrive a bit warmed up with a little fatigue. Good suggestion on how to prep for this test ride. I checked out the S3 and the R3. The salesman told me that the R3 would be redundant of my Bianchi and in his opinion, I'd be better off with variety, hence his recommendation of the S3. I rode it for several miles on the local roads and it was a very nimble and fast ride. I did feel more road vibration through the seat post and saddle. The saddle was the only thing I didn't like about the bike. Other than that, it was a very nice bike. I'm glad I could test it out. I'm going to think about it quite a bit to make sure I'm good with making the purchase. I'm also tempted to consider the Di2 Ultegra option.

    2014 S3 Question: Long ride comfort?-cervelos3.jpg

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    How you like the S3?

    What about the S5? Is a harsher ride than the S5? I am debating between these two bikes....

    I have a chance to upgrade my bike and I am considering these two choices. I ride 4 -5 times a week, between 35-40mi, and the weekend is always a long ride (70-80mi). Understood that there are some compromises on an aero bike as far as comfort, but given that where I live is mostly flat (FL), I definitely want an aero ride (besides that I love these two bikes).

    I have heard comments that S5 could be a harsh ride, and that S3 is more comfortable for long distances. Also, I believe the S5 is 100gr heavier than S3 (which is not a big difference), but you are getting a more aero profile.

    I appreciate your thoughts as to which one will be a better choice. There is only $500 difference between the two models so I am torn. I have not seen a lot of info on the S3, as it was recently launched.

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