Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    19

    AR1 or FR1 Frameset?

    Hi All,

    I am in the market for a new frame to replace my 2011 F5 (Garmin Edition). I completely re-did my F5 and the only original piece left is the frame. Does anyone on this forum have any riding experience with the new FR? I searched google and the only reviews appear to be press releases from August. I am on the fence for a couple of reasons... (1) being that the FR is new and (2) that the AR will most likely be updated next year. Thanks for your help in advance!

    Happy riding!

    Ryan

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: SilverStar07's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    153
    I can't really tell from your post if are looking for feed back on the current AR or are just waiting on the redesign. You might have to wait awhile on user reviews on the new FR, at least in my area they haven't been showing up in stores yet, so I am pretty sure that is why there are no user reviews yet. I haven't ridden the FR but one of the guys that works at the LBS has and his early impression was if you liked the current F series you wouldn't be disappointed in the new FR. Granted his time on the FR was limited to a DEMO day provided by FELT.

    I have the current gen AR and if you would like some info on that I would be happy yo provide you with my impressions, now that I have a full season on it. Let me know.

    SS-
    2015 Felt AR3 upgraded to Ultegra 6870 Di2
    2011 Specialized Secteur Elite Apex -Just about how I want it
    2005 Iron Horse MK3 Expert - many years of trail duty and still my go to Mt. Bike.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    19
    Quote Originally Posted by SilverStar07 View Post
    I can't really tell from your post if are looking for feed back on the current AR or are just waiting on the redesign. You might have to wait awhile on user reviews on the new FR, at least in my area they haven't been showing up in stores yet, so I am pretty sure that is why there are no user reviews yet. I haven't ridden the FR but one of the guys that works at the LBS has and his early impression was if you liked the current F series you wouldn't be disappointed in the new FR. Granted his time on the FR was limited to a DEMO day provided by FELT.

    I have the current gen AR and if you would like some info on that I would be happy yo provide you with my impressions, now that I have a full season on it. Let me know.

    SS-
    Hi SS,

    Thanks for the reply and I am sorry that I wasn't clear in my post... I didn't realize the FRs haven't hit the stores yet. I was told directly from Felt that they were going to be available several weeks (2) after the release. So, I now understand why there are limited hits on Google. If you could, please give me some feedback on your experience/impressions with the current AR. I was going to pull the trigger on the AR1 last season, but it never happened due to injury.

    Thanks again!

    Ryan

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: SilverStar07's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    153
    No worries and the FR's may be hitting the stores elsewhere, just not here at my local Felt dealers. You will most likely see the lower end models first then the higher end ones should start to show up. Come to think of it I haven't seen the VR yet in stores, although I know there are a few here that have them.

    But back to the AR and I may not be the best person on how it compares to other carbon bikes as my other bike is a Specialized Secteur an Aluminum "Endurance" bike size 58 and my AR is a 56, so I am kinda comparing apples to oranges. I made the jump to the AR because I needed (wanted) a race bike for the few Triathlons I do a year and I just couldn't convince myself to buy a Tri/TT bike.

    I can say this though I have put 3x more miles on the AR than my other bike this year, granted some of those miles were me getting used to the new riding position and making fit adjustments. When I bought the AR I was planning on using it for races only but it is now my weekend bike and my other is going to be used for commuting and bad weather. The ride between the 2 bikes is different but not as much as I thought it would be which is why I am riding the AR more than I thought I would. The only time I notice the AR being "harsh" is over choppy pavement, like if there are a lot of root heaves sticking up. I think this has more to with the shorter wheel base, (the AR has a 3" shorter wheel base) and different wheels. My other bike has custom built wheels with a wider rim profile, good hubs and wider tires versus the factory wheels on the AR. I just swapped my good wheels over to the AR but need to switch tires as 25c GP4000's, (they measure close to 28 on the wider rims) wont fit on the rear of the AR. Which brings me to my only complaint on the bike is the rear end clearance and not being able to run crank based power meters with the stock Shimano rear brakes. The non-drive side crank arm is too close to the cable entry on the brakes.

    The bike is fast though mainly because I can get into a more Aero position, it also has quicker more responsive handling than my other bike, which is why I bought it. It might not be as drastic for someone coming from a "F" series as that is already has race geometry. It probably wont climb as well as the F series either as it's not a feather weight frame. Although for me it's not bad as it is only a little heavier than my Specialized which is 17.8lbs ready to ride and the AR is 18.2 lbs ready to ride. But by me switching wheels I will be losing about 1lb on the AR and I cant wait to see how that changes things. My custom wheels are roughly 1550g's so they aren't the lightest either, just a lot lighter than the factory wheels.

    Like my other bike I didn't focus on the weight weenie side of things as I upgrade parts. I more look at fit, function and durability then weight. I am no light weight, (race weight is ~205lb's) and I am a decent climber so I can put a lot of stress on parts. So my AR could probably lose some weight if I was lighter.

    Here is mine, it is a 2015 AR3:

    AR1 or FR1 Frameset?-bridge-over-pilchuck-river.jpg

    Hopefully my long winded post is helpful.

    SS-
    2015 Felt AR3 upgraded to Ultegra 6870 Di2
    2011 Specialized Secteur Elite Apex -Just about how I want it
    2005 Iron Horse MK3 Expert - many years of trail duty and still my go to Mt. Bike.

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    19
    Quote Originally Posted by SilverStar07 View Post
    No worries and the FR's may be hitting the stores elsewhere, just not here at my local Felt dealers. You will most likely see the lower end models first then the higher end ones should start to show up. Come to think of it I haven't seen the VR yet in stores, although I know there are a few here that have them.

    But back to the AR and I may not be the best person on how it compares to other carbon bikes as my other bike is a Specialized Secteur an Aluminum "Endurance" bike size 58 and my AR is a 56, so I am kinda comparing apples to oranges. I made the jump to the AR because I needed (wanted) a race bike for the few Triathlons I do a year and I just couldn't convince myself to buy a Tri/TT bike.

    I can say this though I have put 3x more miles on the AR than my other bike this year, granted some of those miles were me getting used to the new riding position and making fit adjustments. When I bought the AR I was planning on using it for races only but it is now my weekend bike and my other is going to be used for commuting and bad weather. The ride between the 2 bikes is different but not as much as I thought it would be which is why I am riding the AR more than I thought I would. The only time I notice the AR being "harsh" is over choppy pavement, like if there are a lot of root heaves sticking up. I think this has more to with the shorter wheel base, (the AR has a 3" shorter wheel base) and different wheels. My other bike has custom built wheels with a wider rim profile, good hubs and wider tires versus the factory wheels on the AR. I just swapped my good wheels over to the AR but need to switch tires as 25c GP4000's, (they measure close to 28 on the wider rims) wont fit on the rear of the AR. Which brings me to my only complaint on the bike is the rear end clearance and not being able to run crank based power meters with the stock Shimano rear brakes. The non-drive side crank arm is too close to the cable entry on the brakes.

    The bike is fast though mainly because I can get into a more Aero position, it also has quicker more responsive handling than my other bike, which is why I bought it. It might not be as drastic for someone coming from a "F" series as that is already has race geometry. It probably wont climb as well as the F series either as it's not a feather weight frame. Although for me it's not bad as it is only a little heavier than my Specialized which is 17.8lbs ready to ride and the AR is 18.2 lbs ready to ride. But by me switching wheels I will be losing about 1lb on the AR and I cant wait to see how that changes things. My custom wheels are roughly 1550g's so they aren't the lightest either, just a lot lighter than the factory wheels.

    Like my other bike I didn't focus on the weight weenie side of things as I upgrade parts. I more look at fit, function and durability then weight. I am no light weight, (race weight is ~205lb's) and I am a decent climber so I can put a lot of stress on parts. So my AR could probably lose some weight if I was lighter.

    Here is mine, it is a 2015 AR3:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	bridge over Pilchuck river.jpg 
Views:	71 
Size:	175.2 KB 
ID:	317499

    Hopefully my long winded post is helpful.

    SS-
    Thanks for the info. I have done a couple Olympic Tri's on my F-series and that is one of the reasons I was looking at the AR vs. a dedicated Tri/TT bike (I will be sleeping on the street if I have a 4th bike per my wife ;). Did you use your another roadie during your Tri's before the AR? If so, was there a big difference? I spend a majority of my time riding in the mountains/hills, as I live in SoCal... decisions... decisions...

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: SilverStar07's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    153
    I did use my other road bike during my first year of Tri racing and did pretty good on it on most courses. I live in the Seattle Metro area so like you nothing is flat which is why I was able to do alright on my other bike. The hills around here are also one of the factors in not buying Tri/TT Bike. However there are a couple of races near me that have semi-flat or flat courses, and those races pushed me into looking for a race bike. On these flat/semi-flat courses I was able to pull away from the majority of the riders on any sort of hill only to be caught by them on the flats. I was tucked as low as I could go on that bike and it just wasn't enough. It was something even my wife noticed and she doesn't ride or do any sort of racing, so that was the green light to start looking.

    Out of the 2 races I did last year only 1 was a race I had done before on my old bike and it is a pretty hilly course. My times between the 2 bikes is about the same on that course. I don't remember but I think they were within a minute of each other and last year the weather was a factor, it was cold and windy. I only did the 2 races last year because I was battling some medical issues, (still battling, but now know how to better manage it) and was shut down by my doctor halfway through my season so I didn't get to race on the flatter courses. I did however ride them on my own and found it took less effort to maintain speed on the flats. I have noticed on some of the rides I do regularly that there is a pretty big difference when the road is flat or pointed down, I am just faster even though I am not in as good of shape as the year before. Climbing with my other bike is a little better, just a little. I think that is just do to the gearing though, the AR has a 52/36 up front and my Specialized has a 50/34.

    I don't know if you have looked at the geometry of the AR closely but it is kind of unique in that if you flip the seat post around it changes the AR's numbers to that of a Triathlon bike, I thought I saw this on Felt's web site although I can't find it now. Similar to what BMC does with the Timemachine. So in theory if you were going to race a long flat course you could add clip-on bars flip the seat post around and have a Tri/TT bike. If you look on Felt web site it actually list the AR as both a Road Bike and a Triathlon Bike.

    SS-
    2015 Felt AR3 upgraded to Ultegra 6870 Di2
    2011 Specialized Secteur Elite Apex -Just about how I want it
    2005 Iron Horse MK3 Expert - many years of trail duty and still my go to Mt. Bike.

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Posts
    311
    I was in a very similar position as SilverStar07. My first road bike was a 2006 aluminum/carbon specialized roubaix that I purchased used on Craigslist. Over a couple years of riding that I gradually moved into a more aggressive position until I was slammed on it and still wanted to be more aggressive.

    I bought the AR1 frameset and built it up with mainly mechanical Ultegra. I did go with some weight weenie things where the price penalty wasn't too huge like jagwire links cabling, titanium skewers, carbon bottle cages, and some other items. My build came in around 16.75 pounds Which is about 1.5 pounds lighter than the Roubaix. You could certainly get under the UCI limit if you spent more on the groupset or went with some more exotic parts for some other parts.

    Aside from the lower front I am set up very similarly between the AR and Roubaix as far as touch points and don't notice a significant difference in comfort between the two. Also like SilverStar I use the AR for all my fair weather and long weekend rides with the Roubaix used for the trainer, commuting, and bad weather. Tire choice and pressure has a lot more to do with comfort than frame compliance. See this blog post for some more info: https://silca.cc/blogs/journal/part-...re-and-comfort

    The AR seatpost can be reversed giving a 78 degree seat tube angle when using the 25mm offset seatpost. That is similar to a lot of triathlon bikes and if you have some headset spacers left over or can swap to a more negative stem compared to your normal road position you should be able to get into a pretty respectable TT position compared to most road bikes.

    Here is a picture of mine in its most recent configuration. I just added the Flo60 wheels.


  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    98
    Which ever you choose, go with Textreme carbon. I had a 2011 F4. Last year I built up a 2016 F1. Shocked at the difference. It's worth the extra $.

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    19
    Thanks everyone for the feedback. I am going to wait for my LBS to get the FR in (test ride) before I pull the trigger between the FR1 and AR1 (frame only). I will post some pics and impressions once it's built and ridden.

    lachapr

  10. #10
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    1
    What did you go with in the end? Facing a similar dilemma...

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    19
    Quote Originally Posted by Muzza14 View Post
    What did you go with in the end? Facing a similar dilemma...
    Didn't pull the trigger. Holding out until the Fall when hopefully a new AR will be released.

    RL

Similar Threads

  1. 2011 FA Frameset vs 2012 FA Frameset
    By octave in forum Felt
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-15-2015, 09:41 AM
  2. 2014 F1 Frameset or 2015 F1 Frameset?
    By Racersir in forum Felt
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 04-07-2015, 09:57 AM
  3. Emonda SL frameset or Cervelo R3 frameset?
    By BigPoser in forum Trek
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 10-28-2014, 12:39 PM
  4. Emonda SL frameset or Cervelo R3 frameset, or Boardman SLS 9.8?
    By BigPoser in forum Bikes, Frames and Forks
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 10-22-2014, 09:38 AM
  5. 2012 Cannondale EVO frameset vs 2013 Cannondale EVO Frameset
    By scafats in forum Bikes, Frames and Forks
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 04-27-2013, 07:33 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •