Which Super Fast Road Frame???

Home Forum Bike Forum Which Super Fast Road Frame???

Viewing 45 posts - 1 through 45 (of 94 total)
  • Which Super Fast Road Frame???
  • Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    Use a neg rise stem on your Defy? A Defy vs TCR you really won’t notice any difference in speed just from the geometry, aero wheels would be a bigger (though still marginal) benefit and stick some clip-on tri-bars to get a more aero position (get ones where the extensions are below the clamp to help get a lower position, like Pro Missile Evos but something cheaper probably…).

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    A 10mm longer stem and swap a couple of stem spacers from under the stem to above it…

    That really is about all the difference between the Defy and TCR in geometry/fit. Great bikes, Giants “sportive” geometry is fortunately a little closer to their race geometry than many manufacturers though. Definitely don’t start spending loads without trying my above suggestion first.

    Besides, if you like that position, then you at least know should you upgrade in the future, you’ll be fine on a TCR or similar. And your Defy composite frame is a very good frame worthy of upgrading in the future anyway.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    I have no idea.

    I’m just posting to commend your use of the word ‘ Which’, rather than the grammatically incorrect & inexplicably popular ‘What’, often used in similar situations.

    TCRs are great. I’ve ridden one (few years ago, mind) and like any ‘race bike’, it was a bit lively but pretty planted too. Good handling machine.

    Anything marketed as a sportif/audax/etc bike will be pretty close to a full on race bike. The differences going to a racier bike are likely to be:
    Shorter head tube so you can get the bars lower
    Maybe longer top tube and stem to stretch you out more.
    Shorter chainstays, shorter wheelbase, maybe a little more agile.

    Of these things, only getting lower down, whilst remaining comfortable, will actually give you more speed. A race-oriented bike will be a little livelier, stiffer and maybe more manoeuvrable than your current ride but it won’t go any faster in a straight line. May make you smile though.

    If you really want to go faster, you’ll be wanting some blingy lightweight aero wheels. They’re magic 🙂

    Stevo210
    Member

    I’ll try and keep this brief…..
    Having ridden a Full Suss (Cannodale Rush) for a couple of years now I built up a lightweight On-One Whippet and still after 9 months can’t get my head around how fast that thing moves. The speed is very addictive and I can see this being the type of riding I like most…..fast.

    With this is mind I’m considering upgrading/changing my road bike (Giant Defy Composite) which has a sportif geometry to a more race orientated feel with speed at the forefront of the agenda rather than all day comfort.
    That being said I don’t want to limit the possibility of being on it all day so don’t want a TT bike or similar.

    Had looked at the Planet-X N2A as an option, but have had suggestions of sticking with Giant and going to a TCR frame.

    Any recommendations from experience??

    Stevo210
    Member

    A 10mm longer stem and swap a couple of stem spacers from under the stem to above it…

    Will definitely try this as its free.

    Is the Planet-X N2A frame ruled out as a no go then from everyone?

    Aero wheels really make a big difference, and what sort of depths are we talking 50mm? 100?

    Any links to tri-bars that are lower than the handle bars…do you mean something like these?
    http://www.wheelies.co.uk/Images/Products/58883.jpg

    TiRed
    Member

    I have a TCR0 (alloy) and a Defy Advanced SL. There is little to distinguish them when set up the same. What you probably noticed was an increase in steerer angle that quickens up the steering – or even shorter stem!

    Commuted on the TCR this morning, rode 100km on the Defy Monday. The change in frame material is a bigger factor than the geometry.

    Get a set of SLR-Aero wheels for the Defy. They are fantastic all round aero wheels that will add 0.5-1 mph to your speed. Remove any spacers and flip the stem (if you haven’t already) or change to a longer one for a longer lower reach.

    There is nothing “sportive” about the Defy geometry. It used to be known as race geometry a few years ago. There has been a trend to steeper head tube angles (73-73.5 degrees of late), but 72.5 is still race geometry.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    Aero wheels really make a big difference, and what sort of depths are we talking 50mm? 100?

    Aero wheels are the biggest fallacy around! Those telling you they make a big difference have either been seduced/conned themselves, or are trying to sell you some!

    They only make any real difference when your average speeds are well into the mid 20mph zone, and that’s average, not your cruising speed on the flat.

    Tests have been done on aero vs non aero, and typically even the best aero wheels will make only a very slight difference at 25mph. Much less difference than a skin suit, tri bars or an aero helmet for instance (all of which are banned for use in road racing anyway). If your average speeds are under 20mph, stick with a decent set of non aero wheels and you’ll be fine. Certainly don’t go spending money on aero wheels thinking they’ll make any difference at all!

    And regarding the Planet X… You own a Giant… Giant are the number 1 in Carbon Fibre bicycle design and manufacture by a margin. Planet X are a small UK company that design stuff in the UK and then get another factory to make it for them, and have had known issues with poor(er) quality carbon frames in the past (not necessarily the case now) and aren’t known for being the stiffest or the lightest frames… Am I making my point clear?

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    Oh and back on the aero wheels thing… Pro’s use them on flat stages cos every tiny little advantage helps, no matter how small. But get onto a remotely hilly stage, and they’re all on shallow rims.

    Anyone watch the short (mainly) uphill TT in the Giro last week? Was funny seeing all these guys on TT bikes, decked out with shallow section rims and huge cassettes! Waaaaay different to a normal TT bike setup, but then the winning time of Nibali equated to only about a 15mph average speed, and down at those speeds, shallow section lightweight wheels and a good range of gears are more important than aero and close ratio cassettes!

    trail_rat
    Member

    and Mboy ruins his marketing speach by becoming the one whos been seduced by the marketing man 😉

    Stevo210
    Member

    Am I making my point clear?

    You sound like my wife, always trying to get me to stop spending haha

    And regarding the Planet X… You own a Giant… Giant are the number 1 in Carbon Fibre bicycle design and manufacture by a margin.

    How little do I know!!? I bought the bike 15 months ago not knowing much at all about road bike and only based on great magazine and online reviews. Guess I landed lucky then with the frame. The wheels are definitely on the cards for an upgrade as Ive had endless issues with water and muck ingress in to the freehub and they aint the lightest wheels (Giants PSL-1)by DT Swiss Onyx hubs I think.

    Oh and back on the aero wheels thing… Pro’s use them on flat stages cos every tiny little advantage helps, no matter how small. But get onto a remotely hilly stage, and they’re all on shallow rims.

    Anyone watch the short (mainly) uphill TT in the Giro last week? Was funny seeing all these guys on TT bikes, decked out with shallow section rims and huge cassettes! Waaaaay different to a normal TT bike setup, but then the winning time of Nibali equated to only about a 15mph average speed, and down at those speeds, shallow section lightweight wheels and a good range of gears are more important than aero and close ratio cassettes! They still look damn good though 🙂

    mudshark
    Member

    mboy – would be nice to have some sort of evidence to back up your comments; or shall I just use you as a reference in future related discussions?

    TiRed
    Member

    True, but the swooshing sound makes you feel faster 😉 . The 0.5-1 mph is based on speeds above 18 mph. My Defy is faster than my TCR, but it’s almost certainly down to frame comfort, possibly position and perhaps only then, wheel choice.

    And the comments on Giant vs. Planet X are spot on. Giant are a CMO for most of the big name carbon frame suppliers.

    Stevo210
    Member

    My Defy is faster than my TCR, but it’s almost certainly down to frame comfort, possibly position and perhaps only then, wheel choice.

    what wheels do you have then? pics pics 🙂
    Out the box and only the addition of a Fizik saddle since.

    Rorschach
    Member

    poor(er) quality carbon frames in the past (not necessarily the case now) and aren’t known for being the stiffest or the lightest frames

    Had a ’12 TCR Sl Isp for my race bike.Sold that at the end of the season to make way for a new one.
    Bought a Planet X Rt57 as it was on offer for £350 and would do as a ‘not race bike but not winter bike-bike’
    Not bothered getting a new race bike as the Px is stiff enough,light enough,fits me better and handles great .And I don’t live in perpetual fear of dropping it because some numpty triathelete decides they fancy having a go at crit racing.
    It may well not be as ‘refined’ as my Tcr but then the Tcr costs 4 times as much (at rrp).
    I still fancy a Super6 evo though 😕
    As for which superfast frame…..most of the Elite riders bikes seem quite quick to me 😯

    clubber
    Member

    Anyone watch the short (mainly) uphill TT in the Giro last week? Was funny seeing all these guys on TT bikes, decked out with shallow section rims and huge cassettes!

    Most were on road bikes, some with aero bars (usually without elbow pads)…

    But your general point is right.

    To the OP, it really depends whether you want to be fast or feel fast.

    My old CX bike with road tyres on and the stem flipped was barely any slower than my proper racy road bike. The proper road bike always felt much faster though…

    I’d suggest trying out a more racy position (though you may need to work to it over time – drop the bars, fit a longer stem

    And don’t underestimate how much difference a good set of tyres (I always recommend Michelin Pro2/3/4s) can make to the feel and speed of a road bike.

    shermer75
    Member

    CMO? Collateralized Mortgage Obligation?

    Stevo210
    Member

    I’d suggest trying out a more racy position (though you may need to work to it over time – drop the bars, fit a longer stem

    Will drop the bars for sure, longer stem may be an issue as Ive longer legs than torso and even then Im 5’7″ on a children’s small frame.
    Any recommendations on clip on aero bars as Im keen to give them a go too.

    And don’t underestimate how much difference a good set of tyres (I always recommend Michelin Pro2/3/4s) can make to the feel and speed of a road bike.

    Although I said I hadnt changed anything, just come from Pro3’s which I liked now on a set of Ultremo’s which aint bad either.

    mudshark
    Member

    I made my Defy Advanced racier by changing the bars for a ones with slightly more forward / lower position when in the drops, tried a 10mm longer stem but took that off again as felt a bit too stretched.

    Stevo210
    Member

    oooofffff that looks really nice.

    Premier Icon mboy
    Subscriber

    mboy – would be nice to have some sort of evidence to back up your comments; or shall I just use you as a reference in future related discussions?

    I’m out and about and on my mobile at the mo, but I’ve linked to a scientific report giving evidence of everything I’ve stated regarding the (relative lack of) benefit of aero wheels before. I’ll try and find it again later and post the link again.

    Most were on road bikes, some with aero bars (usually without elbow pads)…

    Many were yeah. Some started off on TT bikes then swapped to road bikes as it got steeper! The TT in the tour of California (if anyone watched it) was more of the same madness, TT bikes with MTB cassettes and lightweight low section wheels!

    My old CX bike with road tyres on and the stem flipped was barely any slower than my proper racy road bike. The proper road bike always felt much faster though…

    There’s a big difference between “feels” faster and “is” faster, and this just proves it. A CX bike on road tyres is probably 99% as fast as a road bike with the same rider on board. Remember guys, feel is subjective, and everyone has a different opinion on feel, but the clocks don’t lie!

    As for which superfast frame…..most of the Elite riders bikes seem quite quick to me

    This is ultimately the point… It’s ALL about the rider, not the bike!

    I bought the bike 15 months ago not knowing much at all about road bike and only based on great magazine and online reviews. Guess I landed lucky then with the frame.

    You did your research… Some reviews can be biased, but if you read 5 different reviews on the same product, and 4 of them say its a superb bit of kit, chances are it will be superb. Less lucky, more informed I’d say.

    They still look damn good though

    Oh I’m not denying that! A nice set of deep section rims can really make a bike look amazing! And that is mainly why they sell so well to amateurs… No bad thing in itself of course, just buy a set expecting a huge performance gain and you’ll be disappointed.

    Premier Icon njee20
    Subscriber

    Tests have been done on aero vs non aero, and typically even the best aero wheels will make only a very slight difference at 25mph. Much less difference than a skin suit, tri bars or an aero helmet for instance (all of which are banned for use in road racing anyway). If your average speeds are under 20mph, stick with a decent set of non aero wheels and you’ll be fine. Certainly don’t go spending money on aero wheels thinking they’ll make any difference at all!

    Aero helmets and skinsuits aren’t banned for racing are they? Just need to comply to relevant standards, but as neither are as comfy as road alternatives they’re not that popular. Still see riders using deeps on rolling stages, and some do so on mountain stages. Must say when I swapped to some Aeolus 50mm deeps they were a lot faster on the flat and downhill, but a bit of a slog up hill. It is absolutely a perceivable and indeed measurable difference though, and doesn’t compromise comfort like all the other solutions.

    And regarding the Planet X… You own a Giant… Giant are the number 1 in Carbon Fibre bicycle design and manufacture by a margin.

    In what way? Serious question. They don’t do the lightest, or the winningest, they may produce the most, but Universal outsell Specialized by about 20:1 in the UK, I’d never correlate volume and quality!

    TiRed
    Member

    Oh, all right…

    Does that look too “sportive”?

    And I don’t live in perpetual fear of dropping it because some numpty triathelete decides they fancy having a go at crit racing

    Which was why I bought the used TCR

    They don’t do the lightest

    Err, they do. My Defy shown above is an 800g frame. It’s lighter than the TCR too and is the lightest frame that Giant make.

    EDIT: CMO = contract manufacturing organization. Giant make carbon frames for almost every major manufacturer. Many of the top line frames; Trek Domane, Cannondale Supersix Evo etc are made in house and in the US, but the vast majority of carbon frames are made in Taiwan, and many by Giant. Merida make (and own) half of Specialized, but Giant still supply some of their frames.

    Premier Icon njee20
    Subscriber

    Err, they do. My Defy shown above is an 800g frame. It’s lighter than the TCR too and is the lightest frame that Giant make.

    Ok, but the Cervelo R5Ca is lighter, as is the Trek Madone 7 series and the Cannondale Supersix Evo. Sure there are others too.

    It’s the lightest in their range, but not the lightest you can buy.

    TiRed
    Member

    OK within about 50g of lightest (depending on size, of course). Add in fork, headset and stem cap variance and I can just about live with the difference 😉

    It is a fantastic bike and feels like cheating, to be honest. The wheels are 1450g, rated as the best all-rounder aero at £1000, and were a £250 upgrade for this model. It seemed rude not too! My normal wheels are Ksyrium Elites, and as non-aero they also would be a good upgrade for the OP too.

    Premier Icon njee20
    Subscriber

    OK within about 50g of lightest (depending on size, of course). Add in fork, headset and stem cap variance and I can just about live with the difference

    It is a fantastic bike and feels like cheating, to be honest. The wheels are 1450g, rated as the best all-rounder aero at £1000, and were a £250 upgrade for this model. It seemed rude not too! My normal wheels are Ksyrium Elites, and as non-aero they also would be a good upgrade for the OP too.

    I’m not denying any of that (although actually there are several sub-700g frames kicking around, but that’s splitting hairs). Mboy said:

    Giant are the number 1 in Carbon Fibre bicycle design and manufacture by a margin.

    I’m just asking what metric is that by? Whilst they do fantastic bikes, and they are light, they are not the lightest, nor the most aero etc. Seems a bit perverse to claim they’re the best ‘by a margin’, no?

    It wasn’t a personal slur on your bike, you can stop being so defensive 😉

    TiRed
    Member

    OK not the lightest – that Cervelo (which is a brand not a manufacturer 😈 ) is fantastically light and expensive! I’ll raise you aero then 😉 the Giant Propel, which is really a squashed TCR with horizontal top tube. I considered one of these, but thought it wouldn’t offer much above the TCR (same geometry), and is more expensive. So I went with just the wheels instead. My other reason for a Giant, was that they sponsor our club and it matches my jersey 😳 .

    trail_rat
    Member

    dunno – the gumph mboy spouted earlier sounds suspiciously like the gumph i got fed at a trade show for a particular brand…..

    hook line and sinker.

    Premier Icon vinnyeh
    Subscriber

    I’ve noticed more than one person on here becoming an industry guru as soon as they land their first job in a bike shop….

    😆

    Oooh will keep an eye on this thread, I can’t stop thinking about new road wheels at the minute! Current thoughts are between Reynolds Assault/Chinese carbon/RS 80 C50’s. I’ve basically convinced myself I “need” deep section wheels despite being a climber….

    m1kea
    Member

    I’ve recently splashed for a TCR Advanced SL frame and have been thoroughly impressed with the ride qualities. Stiff and quick to accelerate and surprisingly comfortable on our kwality roads.

    I have over the years built up a literal shed load of old frames ranging from 531 steelies, a Pianrello alu, my old Ti TT frame and most recently, a just retired CF frame.

    A friend thinks his Defy is a little slack for racing but based on my experience, you’ll be pressed to notice a difference. As others have said, tweaking the geometry can make quite a lot of difference. Don’t discount in line seat posts where possible, as they bring you forward and sharpen the seat angle up.

    If you’re going to regularly ride over 19mph then aero wheels can and do make a difference imo. The trade off is more investment for what can at times be a difficult to discern improvement; – deep section wheels can be a real handful in high cross winds for example.

    However don’t forget the bling / smile to your face factor which is difficult to put a price on.

    I’d look at 30 – 60 mm deep CF wheels and treat them as a Sunday best / investment option. Tubs arguably give the best ride but certainly aren’t the easiest wheels to live with when it comes to cost and maintenance.

    clubber
    Member

    A friend thinks his Defy is a little slack for racing

    Reminds me of this:

    http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/bikes/road/product/review-boardman-team-carbon-12-45675

    Note the first comment is from someone know knows a bit about bikes 🙂

    There’s a bit of a myth about racing bikes needing to be super fast steering.

    amt27
    Member

    Scott Foil, end of

    TiRed
    Member

    And medium Boardman geometry is identical to the TCR. The SM looks more like the Defy! 72.5 – 73 degree head angle and 43 mm of offset is race handling. More than 73 degrees is approaching track. Twitchy, but tiring.

    mudshark
    Member

    Scott Foil, end of

    What? Comfort?

    clubber
    Member

    End of the world?

    m1kea
    Member

    clubber
    A friend thinks his Defy is a little slack for racing

    Reminds me of this:

    http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/bikes/road/product/review-boardman-team-carbon-12-45675

    Note the first comment is from someone know knows a bit about bikes

    There’s a bit of a myth about racing bikes needing to be super fast steering.

    I don’t doubt Mr B knows what he’s talking about but that doesn’t stop folk from having an opinion on what works for them.

    I looked at the Defy but based upon the geometries of my current bikes, and what I wanted from a ‘race’ frame, the TCR had a better geometry for me.

    I love spending money, especially other people’s, but if Steveo wants to keep the wallet in check, there’s possibly nothing to gain from changing frames.

    Premier Icon njee20
    Subscriber

    OK not the lightest – that Cervelo (which is a brand not a manufacturer ) is fantastically light and expensive! I’ll raise you aero then the Giant Propel, which is really a squashed TCR with horizontal top tube. I considered one of these, but thought it wouldn’t offer much above the TCR (same geometry), and is more expensive. So I went with just the wheels instead. My other reason for a Giant, was that they sponsor our club and it matches my jersey

    Again, wasn’t questioning your logic for buying a Giant, you don’t have to justify/defend it, was just disputing the claims they’re the best ‘by a margin’. IMO no brand is better than any other, it’s all personal.

    Scott Foil, end of

    So much so they’re reintroducing the Addict because it’s err ‘struggled’ a bit?

    You might need to do a power test and see what sort of wattage you are generating to get the optimum frame, then get some professional advice as to what they think will suit. It all depends what sort of average speed you are looking at attaining or whether you want something that can transfer short bursts of power best for sprinting though I guess its the former. Personally I’d look at Cipollini (big budget) or Dolan Ares (smaller budget) but I assume a lot will depend on your weight and power. Your height is an issue too if you are tall and have a broad chest increasing frontal area.

    Pros manage to spend 6-7 hours on “race” bikes so all day comfort is as much about spending time getting your contact points in the right position as it is about geometry. I’m surprised people managed to ride 45 miles around the New Forest before sloping top tubes, enormous headtubes and “sportive” geometry…

    brant
    Member

    the vast majority of carbon frames are made in Taiwan,

    they’re not.

    TiRed
    Member

    but if Steveo wants to keep the wallet in check, there’s possibly nothing to gain from changing frames.

    Don’t be silly, wallet in check? This is STW.

    I would agree that the incremental change to TCR geometry would be modest, unless he wants to drop the bars by up to 2cm (I have 2cm of spacers on my TCR). But the switch to a higher grade, lighter stiffer frame would be noticeable. Just not as noticeable as a really nice pair of wheels and a longer lower stem.

    EDIT: looking at the OP’s bike, I’d definitely flip the stem and lose at least 1.5cm of spacers. then go for a ride on the drops and see how it feels. My guess is that it will feel pretty racy already. Then go wheel hunting for something about 1400g and some nice race tyres. If the OP can’t go lower on the bars, then forget TCR, it won’t add anything.

    trail_rat
    Member

    aye making his current bike not fit him with a nice long stem would be excellent 😉

    Stevo210
    Member

    the vast majority of carbon frames are made in Taiwan,

    they’re not. Brant are you able to give any comparisons on the N2A vs my Giant Defy? stiffer, lighter, sharper, etc?

    Email in profile if you would like some cover.

    Thanks.

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    End of what? There’s certainly better aero frames out there than the Foil if that’s what you mean.

    TheDoctor
    Member

    the vast majority of carbon frames are made in Taiwan,
    they’re not.

    Trek, specialized, giant, cannondale, Merida, I’d say that’s a majority right there!

Viewing 45 posts - 1 through 45 (of 94 total)

The topic ‘Which Super Fast Road Frame???’ is closed to new replies.