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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
This is my first post, so... hello. I've done some road riding in the past, way back when I had an early 90s Eddy Merckx, but my main passions were MTBs and trials (the hoppy kind) riding.
Very sadly, I have been out of the world of biking for a long time, and want to get back into it in a semi-serious way (like riding an hour or two most days). I'm looking into bikes, and see the different components that are out there. I am familiar with the Shimano hierarchy, and know that 105 is respectable stuff that a lot of weekend warriors race on. I see that complete bikes with the Tiagra are hundreds of dollars cheaper than bikes with 105, and wanted to know if there is a big difference, and if that difference is worth the money. I do know that Tiagra is 10sp and 105 is 11sp, that honestly doesn't make much difference to me.
I'm curious about weight, functionality and durability differences between the groups.
Thanks for sharing your knowledge with me!
 

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Hi everyone,
This is my first post, so... hello. I've done some road riding in the past, way back when I had an early 90s Eddy Merckx, but my main passions were MTBs and trials (the hoppy kind) riding.
Very sadly, I have been out of the world of biking for a long time, and want to get back into it in a semi-serious way (like riding an hour or two most days). I'm looking into bikes, and see the different components that are out there. I am familiar with the Shimano hierarchy, and know that 105 is respectable stuff that a lot of weekend warriors race on. I see that complete bikes with the Tiagra are hundreds of dollars cheaper than bikes with 105, and wanted to know if there is a big difference, and if that difference is worth the money. I do know that Tiagra is 10sp and 105 is 11sp, that honestly doesn't make much difference to me.
I'm curious about weight, functionality and durability differences between the groups.
Thanks for sharing your knowledge with me!
The price differences you see are a combination of the cost of the components (all the components, not just the Shimano stuff) and the frame. Tiagra bikes have cheaper everything - frame, wheels, bar and stem, tires, and so on. New, out of the box, you might not sense much difference between Tiagra and 105, but it will show up over the longer term as durability comes into the picture. If you are going to ride a couple of hundred miles a week, definitely spring for the "105 bike" and all that that implies.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Kerry,
Thanks for the input, I have not looked at Tiagra stuff in person, but it's good to have some info on it.
The two bikes I am looking at now are both from Canyon, and the only difference between them is Tiagra vs 105 componentry. It's a 300gram, 400-dollar difference. Given that is the case, do you think it's worth the extra $$?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
In other words, Canyon is charging a mega premium for 105 componentry. The price difference of a complete Tiagra hydraulic group on eBay is 400 bucks, while 105 costs 650 there. Canyon adds another 400 bucks or so to the price of an otherwise identical bike, for components that cost 150 dollars more, pocketing 250 bucks for basically nothing. Wish I were Canyon!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Pretty sure. The site has a "compare" button that lets you put several bikes' spec sheets in a line up against each other. And the only difference I see is in the groupset. Everything else in the tables is the same.
 

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I have always considered Shimano components as 3 tiers:

Dura Ace: best
Ultegra: good
105: cheapest but works

Tiagra is yet a level below that.
I would go with 105 if you can swing it.
Generally $1 per gram of weight is considered worthwhile so you would be paying just slightly more than that. Of course 300 grams is not going to make a big difference in performance.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I have heard the one dollar per gram of savings figure, but isn't that for aftermarket stuff? One shouldn't have to pay the same money for that for OEM stuff. Well, if I were Canyon or whoever, I would also overcharge people for the same thing. That's how the world works.
I did some bargain hunting and saw that an NOS 105 5700 10sp cassette costs 40 bucks and weighs 100g less than Tiagra 4700.
Replacing the 4700 crank with NOS 5700 costs 110 dollars and saves 140g. A full-on modern 7000 crank (which will work I think, but be a bit "off" because of the narrower 11sp rings) saves fully 200g.
So it might be an option to get the Tiagra bike and then upgrade with one or both of these lighter parts. It's a bit wonky, but costs around 200 dollars less than the full 105 bike.
Probably I am going to test ride some bikes with 7000 and 4700 on them to see what differences I can feel.
 

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You did not identify which bikes you were looking at, but, I checked the Canyon website and found the Endurance AL Disc 7.0 with R7000 weighing 8.72kg on sale for $1599 (discounted $100). The Endurance AL Disc 6.0 with 4700 weighing 9.04kg for $1399. All other components were the same. Are these the bikes you were considering?

For $200 I'd choose the Endurance AL Disc 7.0 with R7000. You get an extra gear (tighter gearing), save 320 grams and will be cheaper to upgrade components in the future. Also, don't forget to add labor costs when upgrading (as per your post #8) unless you can do the work yourself.

Are you planning to do all your own maintenance? There are LBS who will not work on mail-order bikes, some charge a premium and some have no problem. Some LBS offer accessory discounts at the time of bike purchase and offer free 'REGULAR' tune-ups for life. Have you considered this?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yes, I was comparing those two bikes. I don't see the 100-dollar discount, maybe there is some kind of regional pricing?
For a two-hundred dollar difference, the rationale for getting the cheaper bikes does evaporate.
I can do some of the work myself, I have a chain whip and cassette lockring tool to put on the new cassette. I am not sure about the cranks, that is a possible sticking point because I don't know if 105 cranks (esp. new ones) are plug and play with a Tiagra bb.
That's logical that an LBS won't work on mail order bikes, if I were an LBS owner I would have the same policy. I just don't have that strong of a relationship with any LBS here.
I will do my due dilgence and see what aluminum 105 bikes from LBS here cost.
Thanks for the advice, it is appreciated. I have been out of the sport for a long time, unfortunately and am itching to get back in.
 

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Just a thought. You should also factor in resale value. If you ever decide to sell at some point, the resale value will be higher with the 105 vs Tiagra.
 

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You should immediately notice the difference when you shift the gears. 105 will be faster, and more crisp shifting. Don't get me wrong; Tiagra is a good groupset, but you're getting an extra gear with 105 (Tiagra has 10 speed vs 105 having 11), that will allow for the gears to be closer. that will mean smoother shifting too. IMO, it's worth it to go to 105. I ride Dura Ace on all of my bikes do to racing, but if I were to go for anything else, it would be 105. Ultegra is not a lower cost Dura Ace; It's a lighter version of 105 thanks to aluminum being used in some places where 105 uses steel. That's just how great 105 is.
 

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105 is the lowest I would consider going with Shimano. Ultegra is their best bang for the buck group. Don't go cheap trying to save a few hundred bucks and probably regret it later. You're talking some shoes and a couple of pairs of bib shorts here.

The big corner cut bike manufacturers make is wheels. I see a lot of $2500 bikes with cheapo Mavic Askium wheels on them at bike shops.
 

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105 is the lowest I would consider going with Shimano. Ultegra is their best bang for the buck group. Don't go cheap trying to save a few hundred bucks and probably regret it later. You're talking some shoes and a couple of pairs of bib shorts here.

The big corner cut bike manufacturers make is wheels. I see a lot of $2500 bikes with cheapo Mavic Askium wheels on them at bike shops.
I agree - 105 is well worth the extra over Tiagra. Lighter, looks better, lasts longer, even stays in adjustment for longer. It’s not even much more money - I’ve had Tiagra twice, and there won’t be a third time. It is fine as a leisure / recreational and touring group set, but it’s not a performance group set.
 

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In other words, Canyon is charging a mega premium for 105 componentry. The price difference of a complete Tiagra hydraulic group on eBay is 400 bucks, while 105 costs 650 there. Canyon adds another 400 bucks or so to the price of an otherwise identical bike, for components that cost 150 dollars more, pocketing 250 bucks for basically nothing. Wish I were Canyon!
Do those "complete groupsets" include crankset? Some bike brands sneak in a cheaper crankset while still calling the bike componentry Tiagra, 105, Ultegra, etc. In other words, if that Tiagra bike is that much cheaper, it may have a cheaper brand crankset like FSA.

And are you saying the wheels are exactly the same on the Tiagra vs. 105 bike? That can make a difference in cost.
 
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