Need some help. Was a big roadie in the mid 80s to early 90s, then work, kids, etc ... happened and no more riding. 2.5 years ago I started mtn biking with a friend, like it alot but don't get out enough on the trails to get into real shape. Riding the mtn bike on the road isn't working out (have disc brakes and swapping wheels is becoming a real pain) so I've decided to get a road bike. Plan is to ride 2-3 days during the week for 1hr or so, then do 1 weekend ride of 2-3 hrs. I'm 6' and weigh 220ish pounds. Plan to get back to sub 200 by summer (hopefully 185#).

I was mostly set on getting a 2005 allez comp triple (about $1700, with Ultegra components/Shimano R550 wheels), but walked into REI yesterday and they had a 2004 LS Siena (Ultegra components/Mavic Cosmos wheels) in my size at a pretty good price ($2500).

So my dilemna is should I stick with the allez or do people think the extra $800 is worth it for an Ti/Carbon frame with better (?) wheels. And if I'm going to go up to $2500, what other options do people suggest.

The Ti vs Al vs Steel debate is giving me a headache, I was leaning towards steel for the allez but after riding the Al/Carbon version frankly didn't notice a huge difference (I felt a difference just not a huge one, Al was a little snappier on acceleration, steel was a little smoother). But Ti is definitely sexy but I worry that at my weight the LS might be flexy.

I didn't ride the LS yet so this may be a moot question if it doesn't fit right.

My last bike (1983 Peugeot Course 12sp) I rode for over 10 years and expect to keep this one for as long as well (hopefully) so don't want to spend too little and end up spending way too much on upgrades (what happened with my mtn bike).

Need help



P.S. I figure in this forum I'll get alot of buy the LS posts but if anyone has ridden an Al/Carbon vs Ti/Carbon (or straight Ti), please give me your thoughts ...