I bought my new road bike yesterday: details and photos!
My hunt for a road bike is finally over!
As a mountain biker who has not been on a road bike in more than 20 years, I had a lot of ground to cover before deciding on my bike of choice. This project has been enjoyable, but also sometimes difficult and confusing. The advice I received from people whose opinions I respect a great deal was, quite often, completely at odds! At first I found the contradictory advice confusing, but ultimately those varied opinions drove me to deeper amounts of research and benefited the outcome. To everyone who has taken the time to post or email me your advice and thoughts, my most sincere thanks. I feel I made a great choice, and you folks made me think long and hard about that choice.
I was very close to purchasing a bike from Bikes Direct, but near the end of the research process I had a change of heart. I detailed some of the reasons for that change in yesterday’s blog.
Lately I’ve been doing some urban assaults (road riding) on my mountain bike, and I’ve really enjoyed them. As most of you know, once I take in an interest in something I always go full-bore. I would have been foolish to not take that into consideration.
Originally my idea was to get a decent road bike simply for training, but in the back of my mind I sort of knew that the road bug would probably bite pretty hard. It took a few urban rides on my mountain bike to get me to admit that to myself, however!
I decided that if I purchased a low-end road bike I would probably be upgrading withing six months–ultimately costing me more money.
Pretty much about the time I made the choice to go with a higher end road bike, David’s World Cycle (which is where I bought my Fuel mountain bike) began an incredible blow-out on their brand new 2011 and 2012 bikes still in inventory. A big thanks to Paul Lewis for bring this sale to my attention.
The sale discounts were all very heavy, but one in particular was almost too good to be true: the 2011 Trek Madone 5.9. The 2011 model originally sold for $4,200 (the 2013 model sells for more than $5,000), and David’s World had discounted the bike down to an amazing $2,597.40–brand new, full factory warranty.
There were only four of these bikes available, and by the end of the first day there was just one left. The deal was just too good to pass up and, unless I acted quickly it would be gone forever. The Lake Mary location had the only remaining bike, and it was in my size. I called yesterday morning just before the shop opened to make sure the last bike was still there. It was. I purchased the bike online with the understanding that if it didn’t fit or I didn’t like it I would receive a full refund.
I drove down to the shop, which is conveniently located right on the Seminole-Wekiva bike trail. I took the bike for a nice long ride on the trail, and fell in love with it. I could not believe how light, stiff and agile the bike felt. No matter how hard I mashed the bike didn’t flex, and I felt like all the power I was generating translated to pure, unadulterated, glorious speed.
I’ve been told that riding a fine road bike is like driving a Ferrari. I’d have to agree.
The bike weighs (sans-pedals) just 16.4 pounds. It’s full carbon, and the groupset is a mix of top-of-the line Dura-Ace and Ultegra. The pedals I’ll be using (they are on the way) are Shimano Ultegra, which weigh just 314 grams.
The color of the bike would not have been my first choice, but it’s growing on me. The blue looks absolutely amazing in the sun. I’ll be replacing the saddle with a black one (still deciding on which), and will probably replace the white grip tape with black.
Here are a whole bunch of pictures I took yesterday (click to zoom), followed by complete specs on the bike.
Frame: Series TCT Carbon, E2, BB90, internal cable routing, DuoTrap compatible
Fork: Bontrager Race X Lite w/E2 aluminum steerer, carbon crown and legs
Wheels: Bontrager Race Lite
Tires: Bontrager R3, 700x23c
Shifters: Shimano Ultegra STI, 10 speed
Front Derailleur: Shimano Ultegra
Rear Derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace
Crank: Shimano Dura-Ace, 50/34
Cassette: Shimano Ultegra 11-28, 10 speed
Saddle: Bontrager Affinity 2, hollow chromoly rails
Seat Post: Bontrager Ride Tuned Carbon seatmast cap, 20mm offset
Handlebars: Bontrager Race Blade VR, 31.8mm
Stem: Bontrager Race X Lite, 7 degree, 31.8mm
Headset: Integrated, cartridge bearings, sealed, alloy, 1-1/8″ top, 1.5″ bottom
Brakeset: Shimano Ultegra brakes w/Shimano Ultegra STI levers
Components: Shimano Dura-Ace Lite