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I need some help. I am done with my '05 Al. Allez Elite. I want Carbon! Tired of feeling beat up after a long ride on these bumpy roads. I like everything about my Allez, except the Al., the weight, and the 105 (just want something nicer there, no other reason really.

All this leads me to this. Today I test rode a Madone 5.9. I am in no way interested in spending that $ on a bike, but it was the only thing local in my size, and is the same feel as the 5.2SL, which is the absolute max I am even going to consider spending on a bike. The ride was great, loved everything about the bike except the out the door price of $3,275.

I can get a NOS '05 Tarmac Comp for $1,660 out the door. How much less of a bike am I getting in the frame/ fork (ride quality & performance) for half the $? I realize the components are not aligned, but that is fine by me for now.

I guess it all boils down to if I will regret not spending the $ and getting the Madone. I will have a chance to demo the Tarmac as well, just not for another week as the dealer busy until then.

Please try to be impartial (I know this is a Spec. forum).

Thanks.
 

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I own the Comp but haven't ridden the Madone so this will not be impartial. All I can say is for the price you can get the Comp for grab it!
It's a great bike. This was my first carbon bike after years with Al. What an upgrade in ride feel. The Tarmac is stiff but it soaks up the road extremely well. You'll be happy with the Ultegra components. Once they're dialed in they're fantastic.
As I said above, you can't go wrong wih the Comp at that price.
With the xtra money you'd save on the Comp I would upgrade the wheels right off from the stock Alex wheelset. That's the only change I'd suggest making, other than saddle and such. But that's personal preference.
 

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Tarmac Madone

I've ridden my Tarmac for over a year now and am very happy with its ride. Being 6'3", 210#, the Tarmac is stiff enough through the bottom bracket, but compliant to enjoy the rough roads around my area.

One of my partners has settled into a Madone this year and I've gotten to ride it in different conditions. One time was off a mountain pass with frost heaves and chip seal.

They are both a good ride for the occasionally hard riding recreational rider like myself, but they have slightly different "feels" over the pavement. The Tarmac is a bit stiffer and you will notice some of the larger bumps come through the frame. I feel incredibly solid on fast, technical descents. Madone is not a dead feeling bike, it sprints very well. I didn't get that solid feeling from my bike when descending quick down a turny road, but well enough. Some of this may be due to it not being my frame and not being comfortable with its nuances.

Personally, I think the bikes are very similar to each other, besides the Tarmac being a semi-compact geometry. If you are not able to compare them side by side, Go with the Tarmac for the stiffer responsive ride. Or with the Madone for some decent stiffness, but a very smooth ride.

Good Luck
 

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I looked at both bikes recently and the one thing that really struck me with the Madone is its really a "Team" bike. Alot of Twrecks advertising goes into the fact its ridden by the Disco boys and formerly Lance. I ended up with an 06 Tarmac comp w/ full 105 10spd for like 1200 less then a Madone with Ultegra 10spd. IMO the 105 is amazing smooth. At a certain pt you have to ask yourself do you need a bike ridden in TdF or would you rather take that money you save and buy another bike, take a vacation, or just save it? When your out riding I dont think your ever going to say man I m so glad I got this over priced team bike. The Madone is a smooth bike all right, so is the Tarmac. Buy the Tarmac, save the money.
 

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Tarmac and Allez

Like you, I rode the 05 Allez Elite 3500 miles last year. In January, I decided to go Carbon so I could get it dialed in before the season. I struggled with the decision, but mine was all Specialized. It was either going to be the Tarmac or the Roubaix.

I bought the Tarmac Expert because of the Geometry, Identical to the Allez, and the Utlegra Complete Groupset right down to the cranks and brakes. Later I learned it was Bicycling Magazines top pick for 06 bikes.

You should be out the door for $2500. I just sold my Allex Elite for $800. so about a $1700 dollar up grade.

I have no regrets.

-DK
 

· Fat Man Pedaling
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Tarmac vs Roubaix

I have been reasing a lot of the comparisons here and would like to know more about what type of riding the people are posting are doing.

I am 250 pounds, 5' 10" (and hopefully will ride and eat my weight down, but it has been slow in coming, but let's stay on topic!).

I want to do centuries and maybe double centuries or 300km's. I also want more speed. I can manage a 40 mile ride at 16.5mph (a big effort) but would like to do a 17mph average with less effort. Terrain here is relatively flat but I also can get to hillier terrain in an hour by car. (ie, most of my riding is flat to rolling but I lust to be a hill climber, losing some weight should assist).

I want full carbon for about $2k - $2.5k. I expect to be able to upgrade wheels later if I lose more weight.

I am going to need more comfort than my bianchi imola offers. http://bianchiusa.com/04_imola.htmlhttp://bianchiusa.com/04_imola.html But of course want to go faster (and then faster still). Top tube is way too short for me. I also assume to get a bike fit to make sure the bike fits better than the bianchi. The bianchi is a great bike for someone else's body than my short legs and long torso. (Italian, last surviving cro-magnon man).

Suggestions or thoughts?

fat man pedaling

DaveK said:
Like you, I rode the 05 Allez Elite 3500 miles last year. In January, I decided to go Carbon so I could get it dialed in before the season. I struggled with the decision, but mine was all Specialized. It was either going to be the Tarmac or the Roubaix.

I bought the Tarmac Expert because of the Geometry, Identical to the Allez, and the Utlegra Complete Groupset right down to the cranks and brakes. Later I learned it was Bicycling Magazines top pick for 06 bikes.

You should be out the door for $2500. I just sold my Allex Elite for $800. so about a $1700 dollar up grade.

I have no regrets.

-DK
 

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trek's feel like wood

i'm a cannondale man myself, but when shopping for my latest ride i tried to take an impartial look at all the options. the trek was a very nice bike but felt wooden by comparison to the tarmac. in the end i liked the ride/personality of the all aluminum cannondale but the tarmac was a close second. i'd have gone with the tarmac before going to an all carbon cannondale.
 

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I owned a madone 5.9 and sold it. I purchased the tarmac pro (exact same frame as the comp) and love it. the main differance is the handeling (spec. alot quicker) and stiffness (spec alot stiffer). Specialized tarmac frame is alot stiffef cause the way it is made total transfer from peddal to wheel with no losses. handeling is great. only thing I dont like is the width of the top tube towards the rear. I have pretty muscular legs and i get alittle rub everyonce and awhile. I just look at as the bike love stroking my thigh. go specialized is my choice.
 
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