Jamis Aurora Elite Touring Bike

DESCRIPTION

  • Full Carbon Composite Cross fork with mounts for low riders
  • Lighter, stronger Reynolds 631 air-hardened chromoly frame
  • Shimano Ultegra/105 30-speed drivetrain
  • SRAM 10 speed chain with PowerLock
  • Avid Shorty 4 cantilever brakes

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-8 of 8  
[Jun 06, 2014]
Gearguy

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Great price,rides good,looks good.

Weakness:

Great for light touring and casual riding not heavy touring

I bought this bike in 09 after I tore a patella tendon in my knee. I am 6'5 230 lbs and I have never had a bike fit me this well. I could not get a custom bike to fit me as good as this one does. It rides smooth, brakes are o.k. but not great. I replaced the seat with a brooks b 17, use brooks handlebar tape, and put woody's fenders on it. It looks great although a little heavy now but I ride for fun and to keep in shape, not race anyone. Overall this is a great bike that I will never sell or get rid of.

[Jul 19, 2012]
Dan Billsky
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Smooooooth ride on bad roads, great brakes.

Weakness:

For me, bars too low and gearing not low enough. Stock fenders are ugly, don't fit well, and my toes hit the front one when turning. Oh, and the seat post keeps slipping down.

I bought this bike in order to get back into bicycling after an extended absence, and have really enjoyed it so far. The roads around where I live are beat to snot, but the bike just floats over the worst of it. It's also very hilly around my neck of the suburbia, and have come to appreciate how strong and fade free the brakes are on the downhills.

On the long uphills, though, I find myself running out of gears to spin my not-yet-in-bicycling-condition self up without having to grind the pedals and constantly correct the steering due to how pitifully slow I'm going. Hopefully this situation will improve as my fitness is restored.

To make the bike more old-guy comfortable, I replaced the seat with a ubiquitous Brooks B-17 (which, despite the general consensus that it takes many hundreds of miles to break in, felt great to me from mile 1) and put on a taller bar stem.

After hitting my toes repeatedly on the front fender when I turn the bars (size 13 feet, mind you), I finally gave up and removed both fenders. Someday I'll replace them with some better looking, snugger-fitting fenders.

I've also had a problem with my seatpost slipping down around an inch every few miles, which is very irritating. I'm not sure if this happens because of a flaw somewhere in the design or because I weigh 225 pounds (but dropping!) and ride on bumpy roads. But I need to find a solution for this!

Sounds like I'm not happy with my bike, given all the complaints, but I so enjoy cruising around with it that I can't help give it no less than 5 stars overall.

[Dec 05, 2011]
Bob
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Higher quality 631 teel on main tubes
Sram Apex groupo
Price to value
Color coordinated rear rack and good looking
Nice metallic paint

Weakness:

Stock fenders and seat
Crank is FSA and not Sram Apex
Heavy

Excellent steel frame bike for the price. I bought the discounted 2011 model which is also the only year Jamis offered the Sram Apex groupo (except for the crank. Love the shifting and gear ratios though may change to the Gore cabling later. Bike rides smooth due to frame and 32mm tires. Very comfortable sitting position.

Similar Products Used:

Cannondale Synapse

[Oct 29, 2011]
ahren
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Reynolds 631 (all others use 520 or 4130)
Nice rack included
Disc brakes (don't look to good, but stop on a dime)
Solid wheels and tires
Nice seat post and handle bars

Weakness:

1)Tires max out at 35 without fenders, 32 with.
2)SRAM rival or 2012 model 105 triple does not offer a wide enough gear range.
3)Handlebars dont come up high enough.
4) Fenders are ugly and semi functional.

Best production almost "touring" bike under $2500. (Its not really a touring bike)
Sure you can get a co-motion or a Bruce Gordon but you'll pay the same price for just a frame and fork. That is the price you pay to support a cottage industry of passionate builders. And I plan on getting a US made bike as soon as my budget affords it. I don't really consider this bike a touring bike as the gear range is quite narrow and it wont take anything bigger than a 35c tire. But aside from that it's a great bike. Light and responsive. Handlebars could come up about 3-4 more inches to achieve comfortable riding position. I ride it everyday to work and occasional S24H tours. It serves my purposes quite well. I had to swap out the drive train for a sugino triple and XT derailleurs, w. dura ace bar end shifters.
I think this bike is an incredible value and will enjoy it, but can't wait till I can afford a USA made bike.

Similar Products Used:

Lugged steel cross bike
Countless carbon racing bikes
Bianchi Pista

[Jun 19, 2011]
Tim Wilkinson
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Ride
Price

The bike is a perfect fit for the multi-day touring ride or the commuting in the city streets. I'm a steel frame fan and couldn't ask for anything more. Great styling, smooth ride, quality components and a great price when stacked against its competitors.

[Oct 22, 2009]
Bill
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Smooth ride
Comfort
30 gears
and with a brooks seat pefection
Strong bike won't break down
On long rides its very comfortable and relatively fast..supports all types of riders and weight..

Weakness:

Heavy bike compared to carbon or alum
Not a named bike if thats important to you

The bike rides very smooth and steady. Great bike for long rides and good or bad roads. I bought the bike with the hope of long 3-5 hr rides which for me is a long ride. I wanted comfort and some good speed and this bike does it both.
I had the wheels rebuilt and put on a Brokks B 17 and you can't beat it. When I am club riding all the guys have more expensive racing type bikes and I can easily keep up with them or stay in front ...probably the engine driving the bike...

[Mar 20, 2009]
Ewan Robinson
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Versatile compromise between road and touring
Good bang for the buck (components)
Carbon fork makes for comfortable riding

Weakness:

Difficult to impossible to mount rack in rear eyelets
NOT full-on touring design (if that's what you're looking for)
Stock star nut insufficient to grab carbon steer tube
Some concern about durability of carbon fork under touring conditions

Overall I am fairly impressed with the Aurora Elite. It is one of the very few mid-range touring bikes available, and an impressive bang for the buck. That said, I've encountered several problems with the bike, and labeling it a touring bike is somewhat disingenuous.

I want to point out that the bike is not designed for full-on touring. It appears to repurpose Jamis's Nova cyclocross frame. The bike is a higher, more aggressive and more responsive than a touring-specific bike, but also less stable and forgiving.

Unfortunately, the repurposed frame creates a few problems. Most importantly, because the rear eyelets are brazed on to lugs that seem to have been added to the frame, they do not provide sufficient room for all rack types. There is simply not enough space between the eyelets and the seat stays to attach struts. There are work arounds. I haven't contacted Jamis about this.

Another unfortunate oversight is the threadless headset. The stock star nut seems to be aluminum and cannot grasp the carbon steer tube. I had to replace this with a carbon specific nut soon after I bought the bike.

I am impressed by, although a little nervous about, the low-rider rack mounts in the carbon front fork. The carbon fork makes for a very smooth ride. My hands really appreciate it after riding all day on a tour. I'm not sure, however, how well the carbon will hold up in the longterm under loaded touring conditions.

I have yet to take the Aurora Elite on an extended tour. So far, I've only used it for recreational road riding and weekend trips. On the whole, I think the bike represents a decent compromise between road performance and touring stability.

Similar Products Used:

Lotus Odyssey
Trek 520

[Mar 19, 2009]
johnny_bravo
Triathlete

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Steel frame
Ability to add racks
700x32 tires
Triple Crank
Handlebars -- I really like the Reynolds handlebar on this bike, particulary the way the drops are shaped. It creates a very comfortable hand position and makes riding in the drops a lot more enjoyable.

Weakness:

Brake adjustment -- in order to be able to remove the front tire on this bike you must have the tension on the brake cable very loose...much looser than I prefer to ride. This is easily addressed using the barrel adjuster, but it is a pain to have to make significant adjustments to my brakes every time I pull my tire off to use a fork-lock type mount for the bike.

Great Bike!

I bought my Aurora Elite (2009 model) specifically for commuting in Northern Virginia where you almost have to use a lot of bike paths on your daily route. These paths tend to be lumpy and you spend a lot of effort in slowing and then accelerating again at cross streets, so having a durable frame and the right gearing is important

I'd used my carbon Trek on the ride a few times, and felt like my fillings were going to rattle out. Plus, with a significant amount of hills on the route I wanted a triple crank rather than the compact double on my other bike.

Because of this I was looking for a touring bike that would smooth out the ride and give me the torque I needed to climb under load. The Aurora is perfect for this. The combination of the steel frame (which looks GREAT) and the 700x32 tires makes for a very comfortable ride and the triple crank is a big assett for climbing.

I love the bike. Perfect for long commutes (mine is about 18 miles one-way) and touring. If you are in the market for this type of bike, you owe it to yourself to at least check out the Aurora Elite.

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