Two Spoke Forums banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Some background. I am 50 years old. I have been riding a Cannondale 3.0 Aluminum frame for the last 20 years. I have been put in the position of considering a new ride. I have never experienced a carbon frame so I am at a loss as to what to expect. Most LBS's have tried to direct me toward a the comfort models. I am considering a Cannondale Synapse, Look 566, or Cervelo RS. The Cannondale's have the lead since that is what I have been riding for so long and their price is better then the previously mentioned. From my perspective the leader is the Super Six since I am coming off one of the most stiffest racing frame known to man.

My question is who here rides any model I have mentioned here and your thoughts?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,198 Posts
My closest experience with any of those was my Look 595. I had to get rid of that bike because I just couldn't get comfortable on it. I'm only 33 (I can still say "only", right?), but my hamstrings and lower back just aren't that flexible. The main problem I had with the Look, and other models I tried as I was looking to get more comfortable, was the seat to handlebar drop. I finally settled on the Specialized Roubaix SL2 S-Works. It's still a super light, super fast frame, but it has a longer head tube allowing me to run less drop.

You're obviously looking to drop some serious cash. And the fact that you rode the Cannondale so long means you're probably looking to ride the next bike for several years as well. I recommend finding someone who will do a professional fitting for you, then basing your next frame decision mostly on which one would fit you best. Most people seem to do the opposite. They buy a frame, then try to get it to fit them.

What I did, and what I highly recommend if you can find it in your area (I drove 2.5 hours to have it done, but it was more than worth it, IMO), is to find a Serotta dealer in your area with a fit cycle. Since Serotta does full customs, they have a fit cycle where every aspect can be adjusted. They put you on there (it was about a 2 hr process for me) and tweak everything from crank arm length to stem height/angle/length to top tube length until you are riding comfortably. Then, they'll give you these numbers so you know what fits you best. They even first measured my flexibility to get a starting point.

Best of luck. Be sure to show us that new ride when you get it.
 

·
Total noob (& forum admin)
Joined
·
12,350 Posts
If you've been riding the 3.0 for twenty years, you're made out of tougher stuff than I am. The sprintability of that frame was awesome, but other than that, the stiffness was just too much for me. Anything you replace it with is going to be a lot more comfortable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies. My concern with the comfort models is being able to feel the vertical compliance and translating that feeling as being out of control. I don't race. I rarely get up off my saddle. I have had girls go by me before. I have read one review detailing problems with Sram Rival on the comfort models. Don't know how true that really is. One LBS fellow said that he could wow someone who's bike is a five year old carbon bike with the new one's today. He looked at me and said given what you have been riding for so long your head will probably explode.
 

·
Total noob (& forum admin)
Joined
·
12,350 Posts
He looked at me and said given what you have been riding for so long your head will probably explode.
I don't doubt that. Well, not that your head will explode, but you will certainly be pleased with the ride quality of a new bike. What does interest me is why someone who kept the same bike for twenty years would want a carbon fiber bike to replace it with. I wouldn't buy a carbon bike expecting it to be around for anywhere near that long. If it was my money, I'd be looking at a nice steel frame. Just my two cents. Go test ride as many bikes as you can.
 

·
GiddyUp
Joined
·
337 Posts
I have the Look 566 and I can say that it is a very nice bike! Based on what you've told me I think it would be perfect for your riding preferences. This bike is perfectly fine for riding a century or beyond and it is also right at home if you want to join the local club ride and sprint it out with the hammerheads on the front of the pack. This bike is not the stiffest bike and it's certainly not a noodler, not even close. It's plenty stiff, takes off when you need it and is very comfortable. I also have the SRAM Rival on my bike and it is perfectly fine. Any groupset will only be as good as the mechanic that tuned it up for you. If adjusted right there really are no flaws with Rival.

I will say though if you are a large rider this might not be the bike for you. Like 6foot2 225+. anyone else should have great luck with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,223 Posts
Getting passed by a girl isn't necessarily a negative. A girl in my LBS did the Hotter than Hell 100 in 5 hours and 20 mins, and fixed a flat during the ride. Still I am going to make another suggestion. Before you buy, if comfort is your goal try a recumbent or semi recumbent. Not as easy to find bike stores that carry them, and some of them are major expensive but my semi recumbent was only a few hundred bucks Its a very different ride and not for everyone. I found out I loved it.
 

·
American Expatriate
Joined
·
248 Posts
I just bought a 2011 Synapse (alloy) yesterday but, due to this Canadian winter, have yet to ride it. I did thoroughly loved the test ride. I am the same age as you and this is my first Cannondale and I expect to be extremely pleased. I have been riding aluminum for years as well but have never felt the need to switch over to carbon.

Cheers,

Brian J.
 

·
spin... spin.. spin
Joined
·
1,613 Posts
Thanks for the replies. My concern with the comfort models is being able to feel the vertical compliance and translating that feeling as being out of control. I don't race. I rarely get up off my saddle. I have had girls go by me before. I have read one review detailing problems with Sram Rival on the comfort models. Don't know how true that really is. One LBS fellow said that he could wow someone who's bike is a five year old carbon bike with the new one's today. He looked at me and said given what you have been riding for so long your head will probably explode.
ouch about the girls statement.... i feel wimpy just hearing how weak we are;)
seriously though, i think any of those bikes will make you happy.
i road a Cervelo RS for a while but got a new ride that was a better fit for me (size not geo or ride). the Cervelo is a race bike regardless of what the LBS says... an awesome ride but they offer nothing that does not have race geo. it will be stiff, corner and climb like a champion, but most likely be not as comfy for long hauls as the other two. like all velos it is stiff and racy. i would steer clear of it over the other two if you don't want a true compact race fit. i loved it but push myself hard and love getting out of the saddle to climb a couple thousand feet.
i ride all Campagnolo Record but Sram Rival is good stuff. my dad's bike is a pinarello carbon prince decked with rival... looks good works good and seems to wear well. i ride campy because i have little hands and the double-tap is tough for me. if they made a set-up for girls i would go Sram Rival.(unless i could afford Red)
Go with the Look if you want my opinion.... but the Cannondale is a nice ride as well.
 

·
American Expatriate
Joined
·
248 Posts
Haven't seen you around in a while, Brian. Welcome back!
Thanks Brian...it has been very busy at work for me, and at home. I plan on being more active now that things are cooling down.

Cheers,

Brian J.
 

·
Yesterday tired old man, Today retired old man
Joined
·
4,311 Posts
The outher day I went for 2 - 10 mile rides the first on my Fuji aluminum frame carbon fork Absolute 1.0, Then on my Jamis steel frame and fork Aurora Elite same 10 mile loop. I am sure glade I got the steel frame bike, the ride was so much better on the steel frame bike, I did not feel every crack in the road or the vibration from the ruff surface. That is the first time I road one right after the outher, and my avg spd was only a fue tenths slower on the steel bike. Some day I might get a carbon bike, but I am not sure it will ride as good as steel.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
717 Posts
I really can't tell the difference between my carbon or steel bike in ride "smoothness". For me where the carbon bike is better is in the bottom bracket stiffness and of course weight savings. Remember, not a carbon is the same.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
ouch about the girls statement.... i feel wimpy just hearing how weak we are;)
seriously though, i think any of those bikes will make you happy.
i road a Cervelo RS for a while but got a new ride that was a better fit for me (size not geo or ride). the Cervelo is a race bike regardless of what the LBS says... an awesome ride but they offer nothing that does not have race geo. it will be stiff, corner and climb like a champion, but most likely be not as comfy for long hauls as the other two. like all velos it is stiff and racy. i would steer clear of it over the other two if you don't want a true compact race fit. i loved it but push myself hard and love getting out of the saddle to climb a couple thousand feet.
i ride all Campagnolo Record but Sram Rival is good stuff. my dad's bike is a pinarello carbon prince decked with rival... looks good works good and seems to wear well. i ride campy because i have little hands and the double-tap is tough for me. if they made a set-up for girls i would go Sram Rival.(unless i could afford Red)
Go with the Look if you want my opinion.... but the Cannondale is a nice ride as well.
Absolutely no offense meant. The girl that passed me was very strong, and quite a bit younger I suspect. I would love to have an all Campagnolo bike. I just don't want to pay for it.
 

·
spin... spin.. spin
Joined
·
1,613 Posts
Absolutely no offense meant. The girl that passed me was very strong, and quite a bit younger I suspect. I would love to have an all Campagnolo bike. I just don't want to pay for it.
none taken, i was just messin' plus a lot of us girls are pretty wimpy. ;) i think the Sram stuff is just as good as Campy, much more affordable and honestly really nice looking. plus parts are available everywhere. if i did not have tiny hands i would switch to all Sram.... by the way all my mountain bikes have Sram group-sets. i am not a huge shimano fan... but Sram is as good as Campy if not better. just the double tap is tough with tiny paws like mine. let us know what bike you pick all three you are thinking about are awesome rides. :D
 

·
Total noob (& forum admin)
Joined
·
12,350 Posts
Girls that take spin classes and have a decent mileage base can be strong riders. I recall riding with my brother one afternoon, and this girl about twenty went whipping by on an old steel MTB. We had been moving at a leisurely pace, catching up on family and work, but she made us look like we were siting still.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
717 Posts
My wife, 51 years young and a tri-athlete can out ride ALOT of guys. It's just male pride that keep me ahead of her most times BUT she will drop me like a brick on long climbs. No such thing as "the weaker sex' in our house, and that's ok with me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,223 Posts
There is one woman in her 20s at my LBS. Her routine ride is 60 miles. The last century she told me about she did in 5 hours and 20 minutes. To me that seems fast enough but its more impressive when you find out that she had to fix a flat on the ride. More impressive still was that it was the Hotter than Hell 100. Now will a top flight male cyclist out ride a top flight female? Nature says yes, but lots of very good female athletes will excel and beat an awful lot of guys. I wonder how many guys here could do the Hotter than Hell 100 in 5:20 with a flat? I know I couldn't without a motor of some kind.

Who would race April Lawyer? I know I would though I wouldn't exactly call it a race. Anyone ever been lapped on a downhill event? You know what? I wouldn't even care.
 

·
GiddyUp
Joined
·
337 Posts
none taken, i was just messin' plus a lot of us girls are pretty wimpy. ;) i think the Sram stuff is just as good as Campy, much more affordable and honestly really nice looking. plus parts are available everywhere. if i did not have tiny hands i would switch to all Sram.... by the way all my mountain bikes have Sram group-sets. i am not a huge shimano fan... but Sram is as good as Campy if not better. just the double tap is tough with tiny paws like mine. let us know what bike you pick all three you are thinking about are awesome rides. :D

did you know that SRAM has reach adjust for the brake lever and the shifters. You can draw them in to fit your hands reach. I had to figure it out for myself because when I asked the LBS to dial in my shifters he (shop owner) looked at me like you can't do that... he said he'd look around for a shim or something to maybe draw them in. Its actually as simple as peeling back your hoods and using an allen wrench.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top