New Bike/Frameset Choices - Undecided - Page 2
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  1. #26
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    The new Shimano Ultegra is actually pretty decent stuff now, but I too prefer the feel, operation and looks of the Campy components. Iíd have to get a killer deal on a full bike build to consider anything other than Chorus. But pressed, Iíd take Ultegra and probably be pretty satisfied.

  2. #27
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    Well, I wish you luck dealing with Litespeed. Hope you like it.

    As far as test riding a frame before buying it, the last time I did that was in the early 1990's.

  3. #28
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    I have to agree with always test riding an expensive bike before buying. If for some reason, you don't like the Litespeed or even if it's OK, but doesn't wow you enough to buy it, hey, you're only out $200, not $4,000-6,000.

    And your curiosity will be satisfied so you won't have anymore FOMO about it.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  4. #29
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    I cannot wrap my head around how so many people just buy a bike or frame based on blind faith and input from strangers, even if you deal with a really experienced and knowledgeable shop or bike fitter. Guess Iím the weirdo for wanting to actually test what Iím interested in buying before plunking down a large sum of cash. Of course, people buy cars without ever test driving them these days. Again, maybe Iím weird??

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post
    I cannot wrap my head around how so many people just buy a bike or frame based on blind faith and input from strangers, even if you deal with a really experienced and knowledgeable shop or bike fitter. Guess Iím the weirdo for wanting to actually test what Iím interested in buying before plunking down a large sum of cash. Of course, people buy cars without ever test driving them these days. Again, maybe Iím weird??
    Weird, no. I can't quite understand this either. Given I have bought used mountain bikes off eBay without a test ride, that's a few hundred dollars, not a few thousand. If it's a large purchase, I want to test ride it first.

    I wouldn't buy a car without a test drive either.

    At the end of the day, it doesn't matter as much that it got great reviews as much as it matters that you like it. Most people may love it, you may not.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post
    I cannot wrap my head around how so many people just buy a bike or frame based on blind faith and input from strangers, even if you deal with a really experienced and knowledgeable shop or bike fitter. Guess Iím the weirdo for wanting to actually test what Iím interested in buying before plunking down a large sum of cash. Of course, people buy cars without ever test driving them these days. Again, maybe Iím weird??
    Do you test ride a set of wheels before buying them?

    Do you read comments about a bike manufacturer on the web and conclude they suck?

    Do you ask for advice from a bunch of morons you don't know on RBR?

    Last bike frame I bought 2 years ago was a Colnago Arabesque. There's not a bike shop in this country that had one I could test ride. I wanted one and the lack of a test ride wasn't stopping me. I've currently got 4 bikes that I ride and two frame sets sitting around. I know what fits me. In the case of the Arabesque, I've owned steel bikes and know how they ride. Frankly, the worst riding bike I ever owned was that aluminum Cannondale I test rode in 1992.

    New Bike/Frameset Choices - Undecided-img_0204.jpgNew Bike/Frameset Choices - Undecided-img_0206-copy.jpg

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmf View Post
    Do you test ride a set of wheels before buying them?

    Do you read comments about a bike manufacturer on the web and conclude they suck?

    Do you ask for advice from a bunch of morons you don't know on RBR?

    Last bike frame I bought 2 years ago was a Colnago Arabesque. There's not a bike shop in this country that had one I could test ride. I wanted one and the lack of a test ride wasn't stopping me. I've currently got 4 bikes that I ride and two frame sets sitting around. I know what fits me. In the case of the Arabesque, I've owned steel bikes and know how they ride. Frankly, the worst riding bike I ever owned was that aluminum Cannondale I test rode in 1992.

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    A beautiful show piece, yes. But can you honestly say it rides nicer than any of your other bikes?
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  8. #33
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    Your point being?

    It definitely rides different from my carbon fiber and titanium bikes. Fairly similar to my other steel one, yet the geometry is slightly different. A bit more upright. I ride all of them. I don't really find any of them better than the rest, just different in subtle ways probably not apparent on a test ride.

    Yes, it was looks that attracted me. It's a handmade frame made by artisans. It's a dying thing in the bicycling world. I wanted a piece of it before it disappears.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmf View Post
    Your point being?

    It definitely rides different from my carbon fiber and titanium bikes. Fairly similar to my other steel one, yet the geometry is slightly different. A bit more upright. I ride all of them. I don't really find any of them better than the rest, just different in subtle ways probably not apparent on a test ride.

    Yes, it was looks that attracted me. It's a handmade frame made by artisans. It's a dying thing in the bicycling world. I wanted a piece of it before it disappears.
    OK then, you bought the bike for looks and to have a boutique brand, not because you were looking for a bike that gave you a ride quality missing in your other bikes. If so, a test ride probably wasn't necessary.

    Nothing wrong with that if that's your thing. But I'm guessing the OP wants to try a Ti bike because he is looking for a quality of the ride he can't find on other bikes. Not that I think he will find the "holy grail" so-to-say. But hey, as I said before, better to find out $200 later than $4,000+ later that it really wasn't that holy.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  10. #35
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    I guess some of us are above buying a frame because they think itís beautiful. Iíve owned a lot of bicycles in my life and frankly Iíve never found the holy grail. I donít think it exists.

    He will probably will be wowed by the test ride and weíll have Waspinator junior.

    I think it kinda sucks that Litespeed is charging him $200 to test ride their lowest end bike.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmf View Post
    I guess some of us are above buying a frame because they think itís beautiful. Iíve owned a lot of bicycles in my life and frankly Iíve never found the holy grail. I donít think it exists.

    He will probably will be wowed by the test ride and weíll have Waspinator junior.

    I think it kinda sucks that Litespeed is charging him $200 to test ride their lowest end bike.
    Is it Litespeed that is charging him, or is it the bike shop? I am guessing the bike shop needs to cover themselves for a bike they may have a hard time selling if he doesn't buy the bike. If he buys the bike, I'm guessing the $200 will be applied to the purchase. Am I wrong?

    If it really is $200 for a test ride on a bike already in stock, then yes, I agree it sucks.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Is it Litespeed that is charging him, or is it the bike shop? I am guessing the bike shop needs to cover themselves for a bike they may have a hard time selling if he doesn't buy the bike. If he buys the bike, I'm guessing the $200 will be applied to the purchase. Am I wrong?

    If it really is $200 for a test ride on a bike already in stock, then yes, I agree it sucks.
    I've been dealing directly with the Litespeed factory. They also have a showroom. They are not a bike shop, hence limited availability of complete bikes. They normally only assembly one when they get an order. I donít know why you guys see this as a ď$200 test ride.Ē If they are to be believed, Iím not out anything if I donít buy the bike. If I do, the $200 is applied to the price. There arenít any Litespeed dealers especially close to me, so this is my best option to test ride the bike. Having never experienced Ti, I didnít want to just go and order a frame site unseen. Fine if others are cool with this. Just my preference to experience at least a facsimile of what I may be paying significant money for.

    If if I like the Litespeed, I may order one. Or I may decide to pony up the cash for a Mosaic or a Moots. Iíd feel far more comfortable ordering one of those without a ride after at least riding a titanium bike and having some idea how it feels.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post
    I've been dealing directly with the Litespeed factory. They also have a showroom. They are not a bike shop, hence limited availability of complete bikes. They normally only assembly one when they get an order. I donít know why you guys see this as a ď$200 test ride.Ē If they are to be believed, Iím not out anything if I donít buy the bike. If I do, the $200 is applied to the price. There arenít any Litespeed dealers especially close to me, so this is my best option to test ride the bike. Having never experienced Ti, I didnít want to just go and order a frame site unseen. Fine if others are cool with this. Just my preference to experience at least a facsimile of what I may be paying significant money for.

    If if I like the Litespeed, I may order one. Or I may decide to pony up the cash for a Mosaic or a Moots. Iíd feel far more comfortable ordering one of those without a ride after at least riding a titanium bike and having some idea how it feels.
    OK, I misunderstood before.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  14. #39
    T K
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post

    I've read too many negative reviews on Lynskey's customer service to make me not even want to consider them. Avoid Litespeed? Which other brands do you recommend, then?
    Apparently you weren't here a couple years ago when everyone was hating on Litespeed and ABG for their crap bikes and horrendous customer service. There were some legendary threads on the subject. Hopefully Litespeed and ABG have got there sh!t together since.

  15. #40
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    On bikes, I'd go with the Bianchi every day - but that's just me.

    For Campy vs Shimano, I've always ridden Campag, but recently ended up on Ultegra DI2, so I now have a carbon frame with DI2 and a steel bike with Chorus. They both work really well, and I wouldn't have any qualms in taking one over the other. Shimano perhaps slightly easier to work on and get parts for?

    The one thing I would say though is that Shimano shifters are bigger and longer. You may have to adjust your stem if you ride with your hands right up against the shifters because it's a bit more of a stretch, and it's one area where I *much* prefer Campag, the shifters just sit in your hands that much better. For me anyway.

  16. #41
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    Iíd bet my left nut that the $200 only gets refunded if you buy the bike from them. All titanium bikes arenít the same. If you hate the T5 you might love a moots although I doubt youíd not like either. The problem with buying high end bikes is that itís rare youíll be able to test ride them. Bike shops canít afford to keep an inventory of high end bikes. Around here everyone has a Specialized s-works. I doubt anyone buys them after doing a test ride. Itís an $8000 bike. They donít have them on the floor. Good enough for Peter Sagan, good enough for me.

    I think you have to go through a lot of bikes to really appreciate the small differences. Look at the reviews in RBR. Everyone loves their bike. Can you find one review where someone says ĎI bought this bike and it sucksí?

    I commend the OP for looking beyond what the LBS is pushing. My Litespeed Ultimate is on itís second set of components. I bought the frame on a close out sale I saw in Velonews almost 20íyears who. No test ride and no regrets. Same with all my boutique frames. Titanium is kind of old school but thereís nothing wrong with that.

  17. #42
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    If you get the money back if you donít buy the bike, then why do they collect it in the first place? For your sake, I hope Iím wrong. Be careful. Even if you love it, I find a lot of bike manufacturers have really high prices on components. You can usually do better by yourself just buying the frame. And it wonít have Campy on it.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmf View Post
    If you get the money back if you donít buy the bike, then why do they collect it in the first place? For your sake, I hope Iím wrong. Be careful. Even if you love it, I find a lot of bike manufacturers have really high prices on components. You can usually do better by yourself just buying the frame. And it wonít have Campy on it.
    My intent is to buy the frame and fork only, then build it up the way I want. Campy components and decent wheels haven't been included with stock builds from most companies for a while now. Everything has cheap and heavy wheels and 105 or Ultegra.

    I don't get the feeling that Litespeed is out to screw me. That said, I may call my favorite local shop and see if they have anything in a Mosaic built up to check out. Mosaic and Moots are more desirable to me than Litespeed or Lynskey, but I'm not sure I want to spend upwards of $6k for a bike. I'd also consider something like an Erkisen or one of the other Ti builders in the US, but I'm certainly not going down that path, regardless of cost, without ever having ridden a Ti frame. The way I see it, the worst case scenario with Litespeed is I'm out $200 to know how a Ti bike feels. Worth the risk, IMO. If my LBS has a Mosaic to ride, I may not even have to go through with the Litespeed deal, but I probably still would anyway.

    I'm coming around to the idea of ordering something without having ridden the exact model I'd want to buy. It appears many, many people do this. I think if I can get a feel for Ti vs Carbon vs the AL bike I have now, I'd be much more inclined to work with a builder or shop over the phone/e-mail to get a fit dialed in and order a frameset.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by bing181 View Post
    On bikes, I'd go with the Bianchi every day - but that's just me.
    Have you owned/ridden a Ti bike? What are the reasons you'd pick the Bianchi (or any other carbon bike) over Ti?

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmf View Post
    If you get the money back if you donít buy the bike, then why do they collect it in the first place? For your sake, I hope Iím wrong. Be careful. Even if you love it, I find a lot of bike manufacturers have really high prices on components. You can usually do better by yourself just buying the frame. And it wonít have Campy on it.
    I'm guessing they want to cover themselves from getting the bike and then never seeing that customer again. So if he comes back to test ride the bike, he is obviously serious. Many aren't.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post
    Have you owned/ridden a Ti bike? What are the reasons you'd pick the Bianchi (or any other carbon bike) over Ti?
    Probably because he likes Bianchi, no other reason.
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by TnTA2 View Post
    I'm coming around to the idea of ordering something without having ridden the exact model I'd want to buy. It appears many, many people do this. I think if I can get a feel for Ti vs Carbon vs the AL bike I have now, I'd be much more inclined to work with a builder or shop over the phone/e-mail to get a fit dialed in and order a frameset.
    I still don't recommend buying a bike without test riding that particular model. Remember, just because Model X Ti bike rides great doesn't mean Model Y Ti bike will.

    I think you need to read these little words of wisdom about bike frame materials from the late Sheldon Brown:

    https://www.sheldonbrown.com/frame-materials.html
    "With bicycles in particular, you need to separate between what's merely true and what's important."-- DCGriz, RBR.

    ďStatistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital.Ē -- Aaron Levenstein



  23. #48
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    TnTA2, to ride one ti bike and assume that's how ti bikes feel is probably foolish. Just ask anyone who has ridden multiple ti bikes. I've owned many bikes made of carbon, aluminum and steel and have all been completely different. My old Caad 5 aluminum rode like a jackhammer. My new Colnago aluminum bike is smooth and enjoyable all day. My steel Bianchi was springy and lively, my steel Soma smoothie was smooth as hell but not springy at all.

  24. #49
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    If it's important to test ride a bike, it's probably more important to bring the same wheels with tires mounted for any test ride you do. Otherwise different tire wheel combos will have as much, or more, to do with ride characteristics than the frame.

    That said, there's also a lot to be learned about the ride by comparing geometry charts and tubing\material specs.

    I don't know when the last time I test rode a bike was. No shop that I knew had a DeRosa to try when I got mine, my Della Santa was ordered from Roland Della Santa and built for me, so no test ride, and the same for my Boulder All Road, ordered and built for me.

    The DeRosa and Della Santa share the same geometry traits, so while having subtle differences they pretty much share the same ride characteristics, and I enjoy both of them.
    The Boulder, on the other hand, is completely different(geometry and wheel size) and a test ride could have scared me away. A test ride would have only been enough to point out the differences, but owning and riding that bike gave me the time to really appreciate those differences, and it has become my favorite bike to ride.

    I guess what I'm saying is that while a test ride will point out gross differences you really won't know if it's going to be what you want till you spend some time riding it.
    Too old to ride plastic

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    I guess what I'm saying is that while a test ride will point out gross differences you really won't know if it's going to be what you want till you spend some time riding it.
    I couldn't have said it better myself. A 30 minute test ride doesn't tell much compared to sitting on the bike for a few months. Last time I did a test ride was 27 years ago. Every bike since then has been bought as a frame and built up with components I pick out. I get everything just like I want. No Tektro brakes, FSA cranks or Mavic Mysterium wheels. Unless I wanted a mid range off the shelf Trek, Specialized or Cannondale, there's no opportunity to take the bike for a test ride in my locality. And Trek, Specialized or Cannondale don't make anything I'm interested in riding.

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