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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i have a 2010 allez sport 49cm. im 5'8 with what the LBS called " crazy short legs".hahaha.
Anyways, i am 225lbs, and slowly but steadily decreasing. i've got an athletic build, although still about 30lbs overweight.

I've decided i want to upgrade in the near future, however im caught up as to whether i should buy a decent 4 to 5 hundred dollar wheelset with carbon bar,stem,seatpost and all or if i should just trade in my allez and buy a tarmac. The reason i listed my weight is because i know most carbon has a " weight limit."

i was also looking into the cervelo s1, it looks like a pretty legit bike which is light and comes with ultegra components.

My main concern is about carbon, i have no experience with it, and im kinda nervous about upgrading to it. any help advice or suggestions is greatly appreciated.
 

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carbon will make you salivate. it certainly did for me upgrading from my aluminum road bike from 2009 to 2010 LOOK carbon. It absorbed all those small road vibrations that would rattle your aluminum frame. my cousin rides a Tarmac from 2010 and he loves it. its racing Geo so it gives him a good reason to go fast. My carbon bike is relaxed geometry which allows me to be more comfortable after 50 miles.

go ride a high end aluminum bike, then go ride any carbon bike that works. You'll feel the material eating up the bumps immediately.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
i'll look into the carbon then, coming from an old schwinn bike to the allez i was amazed, so im figuring going from the allez to the tarmac should be the same feeling. do you think that being at 225 pounds will pose any threat to the carbon frame and seat post and all????
 

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nope, non at all. But focus on wheels. The wheel is what will take the biggest hit with weight. I weigh 150 so its not really a factor for me, but i'd go with something with a high spoke count and rims/spokes that are known to be strong. I know thats going to suck (high spoke count) because its going to weigh down the bike more, but its better than bending and truing wheels. Many LBS's will allow you to upgrade wheels out of the box, let us know what model ur getting and if u can do the upgrade.

Why the Tarmac though? It has a very aggressive race geometry. You gunna be doing races? How about the roubaix or the CD Synapse? (Or my LOOK 566?) All these have relaxed geometries that you can still go super fast on. (hit 45 on my last century)

@
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
im not hooked on the tarmac, im more less just debating on the CF bike, i have looked into the roubaix some. To be honest i've always been a specialized buyer, so i really havent looked around much.

Although im totally open for suggestions on a basic CF bike.
 

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carbon will make you salivate. it certainly did for me upgrading from my aluminum road bike from 2009 to 2010 LOOK carbon. It absorbed all those small road vibrations that would rattle your aluminum frame. my cousin rides a Tarmac from 2010 and he loves it. its racing Geo so it gives him a good reason to go fast. My carbon bike is relaxed geometry which allows me to be more comfortable after 50 miles.

go ride a high end aluminum bike, then go ride any carbon bike that works. You'll feel the material eating up the bumps immediately.
I have both or I should say I had both. Being unemployed, I had to sell my carbon bike. That Obama stimulus package didn't save my job nor is it creating any long term jobs in my field but that is a topic for a different time.

My aluminum bike (Abici) was $52-5300 fully built up vs $7000 for the carbon bike (Guerciotti). Yes, the carbon bike was quite a bit smoother than the Abici BUT it's not like the Abici will rattle your teeth out. My legs were just as tired after pedaling the Guerciotti for 4-5 hours as they are after 4-5 hours on the Abici. I really don't feel anymore beat when I'm on the Abici. There was just less road vibration and some of the sharp hits by broken pavement were smoother on the Guerciotti. The Guerciotti was also lighter: 16 lbs vs 17.7 for the Abici and that's with pedals ready to roll. In every other area of performance they are a virtual wash. There wasn't anything the Guerciotti did that the Abici can't.

Carbon is the material of choice nowadays. A couple of years from now it will be unobtainium and everybody will be telling you how great unobtainium is. There is one inescapable fact though; carbon will make you drool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
anyone have experience with cervelo????? they have the s1 which is aluminum and has ultegra components with inner-cable routing and all. Im kinda turning towards it, but i know i can get a carbon bike for the same price.... or i could just upgrade my wheelset considering there is absolutely nothing wrong with my allez.hahaha
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
i apologize if i referred to carbon as " upgrade" im just trying to get a little insight b/c im wondering if its worth the extra coin.
 

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jeeper006 said:
anyone have experience with cervelo????? they have the s1 which is aluminum and has ultegra components with inner-cable routing and all. Im kinda turning towards it, but i know i can get a carbon bike for the same price.... or i could just upgrade my wheelset considering there is absolutely nothing wrong with my allez.hahaha
Are you turning towards it because of the Ultegra and internal routing since it's also Alu? Nothing wrong with that, if we only bought bikes based on pure function, alot of bike companies would be out of business?

Anyway, I've had steel, full aluminum (including fork- that was a bone cruncher), alu frame-carbon fork, Ti and carbon. I prefer Ti above all else because I like the ride, the classic lines of relatively thin tubing and most of all not having to worry about it getting scratched and nicked up. However, (generalizing here) between carbon and Alu, for just casual riding around, carbon will be more comfy.

Check out the TREK line of carbon bikes too so at least you're not locked into one brand. And whatever you buy, make sure the shop really spends some time fitting you to the bike. That will do way more for you than internal cable routing.
 

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there's a great thread elsewhere about how wheel selection, tire width, and tire pressure will have a much greater impact on your comfort than the frame and fork.

Tread carefully with lightweight components. Consider the risk/benefit ratio - yes I've witnessed failures. I'm waiting on the trick parts til I lose a few more pounds. I'm treating it a a reward for making my weight loss goal.

A trick strong wheelset would be a 'transferable' component that could move to your new ride when you're ready to upgrade bikes.
The older Mavic Ksyrium SSC SL (2003?) are known as a Clydesdale-friendly wheelset, and are stiff and light.
My LBS ( additivecycles.com ) recommends HED C2 rims with White Industries MI5 and H3 hubs as a bombproof wheelset that will be more comfortable than the Mavics.

hope this helps.
 

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I have both and race both, and yes carbon can be smoother. However an aluminum bike with some nice tubular wheels mounted with 25’s will be just as nice if not better. There are a lot of fine aluminum bikes out there, and while the allure of carbon is strong it’s not always the best choice.
 

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Interesting thread. I just built up a Cervelo S1 (Force groupset, carbon bars, DT hubs and rims) and I think it rides smoother than my ti bike. And I'm pretty certain it is lighter as well. I might also add the S1 handles just brilliantly. Now that I think about it, maybe I'll head out for a ride tonight!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ti, give me some insight on the cervelo. for some reason im falling in love wth it. Its hard for me to pass up a CF tarmac, but something about the cervelo s1 is appealing to me.
 

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jeeper006 said:
Ti, give me some insight on the cervelo. for some reason im falling in love wth it. Its hard for me to pass up a CF tarmac, but something about the cervelo s1 is appealing to me.
Well, my purchase of the Cervelo falls squarely in the realm of impulse buying...I was able to pick up the older gray annodized frame at a discount. I never test rode the bike, etc. Just trusted my fitter. I then took my time building it up just as I wanted it. So I can't comment on the stock pre-built bikes but I sure like my model! It rides very smoothly, is responsive yet stable. (It loves descending steep, double camber hair pin turns!!). Understand that what I have put on the bike is a bit of an upgrade from the factory built bike. I also just happen to like the feel of a metal bike and I don't think that just deadening the road is always a great thing...if I did, I'd drive an Olds Delta 88!

I also wouldn't say anything to discourage you from the Tarmac if it speaks to you. I hear great things about it but have never rode one. (I DID try a Roubaix once and, while comfortable, I found the steering sluggish compared to my Merlin.)

I went with aluminum partly because I have a ti frame already and I just didn't think that the equivalent bike in carbon was going to make me $1500 - $2000 happier. OTOH, in the short time I have had the S1 (Soloist Team, really) I have been so impressed with the design that I wonder if I might like a Cervelo RS as my long distance, easier day bike (yes, Cervelo doesn't want me to think of the RS as a "comfort" bike...oh well). Wouldn't get rid of my S1 though!!

I understand why the Cervelo has your eye. It really is a pleasure to ride. I certainly understand why so many say it is a fantastic value. I have no regrets on the money spent.

Does that help?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
very much. i constantly hear how " dampening" carbon is, but im kind of nervous about damaging it. i dont wanna sound like someone who is a badass who bashes their bikes, i just ride mostly on backroads which are not smooth and half plenty potholes, and i do fall down once in a blue moon... thankfully only once in a blue moon... i just dont want to get a carbon bike and then always feel nervous to ride it. Or am i totally overreacting about the fragilness of carbon??????

also, i do feel every single bump on the allez, and i can definitely see how that can get frustrating after many miles.
 

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I'd try some 25c tires with a bit lower air pressure and go from there.

Carbon isn't some kind of magical shock absorber like some people would like you to think.
 

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AvantDale said:
I'd try some 25c tires with a bit lower air pressure and go from there.

Carbon isn't some kind of magical shock absorber like some people would like you to think.
+1! A pothole is a pothole. Hit it and you'll feel it. Carbon might help on long stretches of chip seal, etc. As for damaging carbon, I think the fragile carbon thing is a bit of internet drama. Crash any bike and you may or may not damage it. A replaceable der. hanger may give your frame a degree of insurance. I have heard of some carbon frames not having a replaceable hanger and that just doesn't sound like a good idea to me.
 

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I am a cervelo S1 owner. year and a half now. I tested it out before I bought and at the same time tested 2 comparable carbon bikes of top quality in the same price range. I love my S1. I didn't notice any diff. in the ride of the 3 bikes I tested. Now I only went on 10mile test rides but I was fitted on each before the rides so all things were equal other than the fact that 2 were carbon and the S1 alum. All 3 bikes were within 200 bucks in price. I have only put about 1600 miles on it so far but I do love it and I have done several 100k rides with it and I don't feel beat up in the least. Tired maybe but I am 52 years young and 250lbs. As far as wheels go, I have upgraded to dura ace carbon clinchers and have been assured that these would handle my weight with no problem. And that came straight from shimano. They have been on for 6 mos,. with no sign of issues at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
jaydub, throw in a pic or two of the cervelo if u dont mind. i cant seem to find too many on here
 
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