The right road frame for a big guy!?

DonDaddyD
DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
edited January 2009 in Commuting chat
Ok

Firstly, can anyone confirm the difference in shape and riding characteristics between a compact road bike frame (like a Giant SCR/Defy) and a standard road bike frame (like some other bike)?

Secondly, are there any road bike geometries that are better suited to a wide big guy in the region of 14 - 15 stone?
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Comments

  • gtvlusso
    gtvlusso Posts: 5,112
    Hi DDD,

    Compact frames are better for sprinting! Basically, as the top tube is lower you can move the bike under you more and the handling is usually sharper.

    Normal frames are more comfy and usually not as stiff as compact, slightly slower handling.

    I am 13 stone and I am on a 55.5cm Boardman Team alloy frame - super stiff and semi-compact geometry - I would probably worry more about what the wheels can take, in terms of load (not calling you a fatty!) and would probably avoid Carbon frames (I find that it is like riding a plastic bottle!)

    Compact also handles sharply - the dynamics are built for close querter racing and sprint finishing.

    Why not go for good, old fashioned steel?! Or Semi-Compact Alloy?!
  • greg66_tri_v2.0
    greg66_tri_v2.0 Posts: 7,172
    edited January 2009
    Compact vs standard: Compact (and semi-compacts) have a sloping top tube. Standard have a horizontal top tube.

    Because the slope lowers the junction between the top tube and the seat tube, the seat tube/seat stay junction comes down as well. This reduces the size of the rear triangle. Smaller triangle (all other things being equal) = harder to deform.

    A stiff rear triangle means less of your energy gets wasted twisting the frame out of shape and more of it goes to moving the bike. (The other "key" areas for stiffness are around the bottom bracket - you don't want a bike frame that swings underneath you with each pedal stroke - and the head tube - you don't want something with a mushy response in the corners).

    None of which seemed to stop Armstrong winning seven Tours on standard geometry. But plainly he's not putting out the sort of awesome power levels that are bread and butter for an SCR'er :wink:

    Handling is more to do with stiffness of the frame and the length of the wheelbase. More stiff = pretty obvious. Short wheelbase = quicker responses/more twitchy, depending on your POV.

    Ride quality is a different ball game. It's possible to make generalisations about most materials, except CF. CF can be engineered in the layup and tube geometries to give a plush Cadillac ride to a harsh Impreza ride and anything in between.

    What should you get?

    I'd say something stiff. As a larger rider you should be able to put out decent power levels more often (remember, its power:weight that the speedo cares about), and so you're going to put a reasonable amount of force through the frame. Focus, Storck are two makers of stiff frames that immediately come to mind (basically, a lot of German bike stuff is bloody stiff - funny that). Ditto Cervelo, Cannondale, top end Looks, Pinarello, even Giants. And then there's the custom stuff (Parlee, Crumpton etc) that can be made as stiff as you want it.

    Bear in mind, however, that stiffness can come with a price (above the £ price). If you want a comfortable ride, you want something that stiff in the directions you're applying pressure to, but is soft "up-down" - ie soaks up some road vibration. Otherwise you're going to find out which are your loose fillings.

    So given what you're looking for - basically a race-level road bike, I'd suggest looking second hand. Six months ago with the USD lower, this would have been a good deal...
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  • Jamey
    Jamey Posts: 2,152
    Greg66 is my new favourite explainer.

    Thanks Greg.
  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Greg66 wrote:
    I'd say something stiff. As a larger rider you should be able to put out decent power levels more often (remember, its power:weight that the speedo cares about), and so you're going to put a reasonable amount of force through the frame. Focus, Storck are two makers of stiff frames that immediately come to mind (basically, a lot of German bike stuff is bloody stiff - funny that). Ditto Cervelo, Cannondale, top end Looks, Pinarello, even Giants. And then there's the custom stuff (Parlee, Crumpton etc) that can be made as stiff as you want it.

    Bear in mind, however, that stiffness can come with a price (above the £ price). If you want a comfortable ride, you want something that stiff in the directions you're applying pressure to, but is soft "up-down" - ie soaks up some road vibration. Otherwise you're going to find out which are your loose fillings.

    Thanks for the explanation Greg. Cannondale and their solid stiff bottom bracket has caught my curiousity.

    My bike feels like my bike before the previous one did. The back of the bike fels like a dead weight at times and no amount of power would get the bike up to speed.

    I may need to change my pedal technique though, spinning instead of mashing....

    As for softening the ride, my Bonty XXXlite carbon seat post absorbs a hell of a lot of road vibration, only other improvement to the SCR would be to make the front end more stable and sure footed (how would I do that?)

    (I'm split between two worlds, upgrading my SCR getting it to feel the way I want it to and purchasing a new bike with that feel already built in).
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • DonDaddyD wrote:
    (I'm split between two worlds, upgrading my SCR getting it to feel the way I want it to and purchasing a new bike with that feel already built in).

    You're not really. It's just that you haven't yet realised that you've got to the Two Bikes Moment: one for commuting and one for non-commuting rides (or, as I prefer, one for the wet and one for the dry). Come on, do try to keep up!

    Once you realise you're at the Two Bikes Moment, you'll be a lot happier and less anxious. Your path will be clear.

    [You could try a new fork on your SCR, but I'm not quite clear what the problem is with the front end, so I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good upgrade].
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  • Clever Pun
    Clever Pun Posts: 6,778
    I'm 95-97kilos that's about 15.8 in old money and I've never had a problem*

    * except the one time I destroyed the bottom bracket housing by setting off at speed, but that's power not weight
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  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Greg66 wrote:
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    (I'm split between two worlds, upgrading my SCR getting it to feel the way I want it to and purchasing a new bike with that feel already built in).

    You're not really. It's just that you haven't yet realised that you've got to the Two Bikes Moment: one for commuting and one for non-commuting rides (or, as I prefer, one for the wet and one for the dry). Come on, do try to keep up!

    Once you realise you're at the Two Bikes Moment, you'll be a lot happier and less anxious. Your path will be clear.

    [You could try a new fork on your SCR, but I'm not quite clear what the problem is with the front end, so I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good upgrade].

    It's not so much as I think you're right. I know you're right and I've been trying to justify it to myself for a stupidly long while. - It's not even the cost implication, its that I'll have to go back on a lot of what I've said about needless expense, greed and the state of the economy. But damn it! I want a bike for Sundays!

    Anyway,
    - Compact Road Frame (small stiff/strong rear triangle) is in fact better for my large frame. You are probably right sprinting (briefly) is what I love about the SCR.

    - The deadwieght may be me. Other types of riding (not sprinting) make the back end feel heavy, this may be me or my pedal technique not being fluid at certain speeds.

    Front end: When I got the bike, accessing the drops made going up hills noticably easy compared to the bikes I had before - stand up on the bike, all the wieght to the front, pedal mash, pedal mash. However the spacers made the handlebars higher than I'd like and my raised large chest acted as a sail in heavy wind. I droped the bars a couple of spacers and speed on flats were 'king' but now I've lost the ability to climb as I can't access the drops as easily - too strecthed out.

    What the above means is that what I've gained in straight line speed, along with hill climbing I feel like I've lost a certain amount of control and stability at the front.
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • Clever Pun
    Clever Pun Posts: 6,778
    Greg66 wrote:
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    (I'm split between two worlds, upgrading my SCR getting it to feel the way I want it to and purchasing a new bike with that feel already built in).

    You're not really. It's just that you haven't yet realised that you've got to the Two Bikes Moment: one for commuting and one for non-commuting rides (or, as I prefer, one for the wet and one for the dry). Come on, do try to keep up!

    Once you realise you're at the Two Bikes Moment, you'll be a lot happier and less anxious. Your path will be clear.

    [You could try a new fork on your SCR, but I'm not quite clear what the problem is with the front end, so I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good upgrade].

    plus if you have 2 bikes and one can't be ridden it doesn't ruin your day... it's an investment you can't afford to miss
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  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Clever Pun wrote:
    I'm 95-97kilos that's about 15.8 in old money and I've never had a problem*

    * except the one time I destroyed the bottom bracket housing by setting off at speed, but that's power not weight

    You're nearly 16stone :shock: You don't look it! what are you the Hulk and all that mass is deposited in a suspension of belife until you get angry?

    What bike were you on when you destroyed the bottom bracket.

    *Note to self* Must destroy bottom bracket as a symbol of my absolute power! *Note to self*
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • Clever Pun
    Clever Pun Posts: 6,778
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    Clever Pun wrote:
    I'm 95-97kilos that's about 15.8 in old money and I've never had a problem*

    * except the one time I destroyed the bottom bracket housing by setting off at speed, but that's power not weight

    You're nearly 16stone :shock: You don't look it! what are you the Hulk and all that mass is deposited in a suspension of belife until you get angry?

    What bike were you on when you destroyed the bottom bracket.

    *Note to self* Must destroy bottom bracket as a symbol of my absolute power! *Note to self*

    I was sitting down talking to you... :lol: I have an upper body and do weights twice a week...before I started cycling I was up at 17 1/2 st beers got in the way of the gym and my genetics loves the pie :cry:

    it was a condor squadra frame... luckily it was under warranty otherwise that would have been fricking expensive journey.

    oh... don't make me angry, but beer soothes the savage beast.
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  • biondino
    biondino Posts: 5,990
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    Greg66 wrote:
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    (I'm split between two worlds, upgrading my SCR getting it to feel the way I want it to and purchasing a new bike with that feel already built in).

    You're not really. It's just that you haven't yet realised that you've got to the Two Bikes Moment: one for commuting and one for non-commuting rides (or, as I prefer, one for the wet and one for the dry). Come on, do try to keep up!

    Once you realise you're at the Two Bikes Moment, you'll be a lot happier and less anxious. Your path will be clear.

    [You could try a new fork on your SCR, but I'm not quite clear what the problem is with the front end, so I'm not sure that would necessarily be a good upgrade].

    It's not so much as I think you're right. I know you're right and I've been trying to justify it to myself for a stupidly long while. - It's not even the cost implication, its that I'll have to go back on a lot of what I've said about needless expense, greed and the state of the economy. But damn it! I want a bike for Sundays!

    Anyway,
    - Compact Road Frame (small stiff/strong rear triangle) is in fact better for my large frame. You are probably right sprinting (briefly) is what I love about the SCR.

    - The deadwieght may be me. Other types of riding (not sprinting) make the back end feel heavy, this may be me or my pedal technique not being fluid at certain speeds.

    Front end: When I got the bike, accessing the drops made going up hills noticably easy compared to the bikes I had before - stand up on the bike, all the wieght to the front, pedal mash, pedal mash. However the spacers made the handlebars higher than I'd like and my raised large chest acted as a sail in heavy wind. I droped the bars a couple of spacers and speed on flats were 'king' but now I've lost the ability to climb as I can't access the drops as easily - too strecthed out.

    What the above means is that what I've gained in straight line speed, along with hill climbing I feel like I've lost a certain amount of control and stability at the front.


    DDD - have you ridden a faster bike where the back end hasn't felt "dead"? I worry you're translating a frustration in power transfer into some fault in the bike when actually, that's how all bikes feel. If you have 15 stone sitting on the back wheel then clearly it's not going to move as easily as you'd like, but that's you and (crash diet withstanding) you can't assume changes to the bike will sort that out.

    Personally I feel I have scarily little control standing up on the drops - I feel much more stable and like I can apply much more power on the hoods. So perhaps it's just getting used to it? And on hills, it's less important to be aerodynamic as you'll be going a lot slower so it's much less of an issue.
  • DDD: climbs on the hoods, not the drops (like what Blondie just said :D ).

    As for the "dead weight" issue, try riding with your weight right on the nose of the saddle. If all your weight's over the rear wheel, it's going to drive the rear wheel into the road. Pull it more into the middle of the bike, and you spread it more evenly. See if that sorts the problem. If it does, a solution is to bring the saddle forward on the rails (or lose some fcuking weight!).

    And make sure your pressures are 90-100psi. A squashy back tire is like running on sand.
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  • redddraggon
    redddraggon Posts: 10,862
    gtvlusso wrote:
    Normal frames are more comfy and usually not as stiff as compact, slightly slower handling.

    ...

    Compact also handles sharply - the dynamics are built for close querter racing and sprint finishing.

    I'm afraid you look a bit confused. Whether or not the frame is compact/sloping or traditional, it does not alter the important handling characteristics of the bike. The handling is all down to wheelbase and ST/HT angles.

    You are right about stiffness, but it is negligible. But handling is nothing to do with whether it's compact or not.
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  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Biondino, because the headtube is quite long the drops are higher. When I had the handlebars at their highest climbing hills while holding the drops forcing my weight forward (shifting the bike side to side) was easier than holding the hoods which were then too high. This affected speed (regardless of holding the hoods or drops) on flats as the position meant a lot of wind in the chest - also didn't give the 'faux' race-like riding position I craved.

    I dropped the handle bars a few spacers.

    This now means that the hoods are the most accessible part of the handlebars [for me]. However the bike has lost some of it's hill climbing ability because of this (pushing all my weight on the hoods isn't the same as doing so on the drops - different centre of gravity) though riding the bike on the hoods is preferable in this position overall. However the bike doesn't feel as stable on the hoods as I'd like.

    Greg, I'm not fat. I notice the dead weight feeling when I'm most forward 'on the nose' of the bike. I'm not getting the return on effort that I should (as in the past), on this bike. Ironically when I'm sat on the seat, spinning/sprinting I don't notice that feeling as much. It really doesn't feel right though, that's why I'm making an issue of it.
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • Clever Pun
    Clever Pun Posts: 6,778
    DDD's Mum wrote:
    Leave him alone Greg66, he's big boned
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  • Clever Pun wrote:
    DDD's Mum wrote:
    Leave him alone Greg66, he's big boned

    :D:D:D
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  • Sewinman
    Sewinman Posts: 2,131
    Does it really make a huge amount of difference? I mean all this technical stuff? I have a Trek 1.2 which is very basic, entry level road bike...but I think I would give the bike the huge benefit of doubt over me when apportioning blame for my slow riding. I am pretty sure I can improve my riding performance by large %s simply by doing sh*t loads of miles and losing some timber, compared to the %s I would get from spending a load of money buying a new bike.

    I mean my Trek 1.2 is probably miles lighter than bikes that people have historically climbed Ventoux on, or won the TDF... so tools, workmen etc
  • biondino
    biondino Posts: 5,990
    Hmm, DDD, could it actually be the front end which is being deadened - i.e. made less nippy and responsive - by you putting more weight on it? Either way, I think I'm baffled.
    DDD wrote:
    (pushing all my weight on the hoods isn't the same as doing so on the drops - different centre of gravity)

    Again, I suspect this is simply a matter of getting used to it. If anything, the lower position of the drops could mean that they are taking more of your bodyweight giving you less weight with which to power the pedals. Clearly this isn't happening to you. Once again, I don't have an answer other than standing on the hoods will quickly become second nature.
  • itboffin
    itboffin Posts: 20,062
    DDD sorry if I missed it already but when you bought the bike did they do any kind of fitting or make recommendations as to which sort of bike would suit your style/frame etc.?

    When I bought my Trek the LBS did nothing and I mean nothing to help me chose the right frame, in fact I'm pretty certain they only wanted to shift a stock item.

    Trek insist on only selling through dealers to ensure customer get a fitted fully set up to ride bike, pah!

    I've learnt my lesson next time I'm going to a specialist LBS like the good shop in Newbury, have you considered returning to the shop where you purchased your bike from and explaining your issues.
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  • Bassjunkieuk
    Bassjunkieuk Posts: 4,232
    Very interesting thread especially as I can't say I haven't also looked longingly at all the slightly more (and seriously more) expensive road bikes in each shop I find!
    As I have the slightly older model then your (DDD) bike I can offer some input I believe.
    For me I'm still learning how to best handle the bike through fast corners as I don't feel confident getting a proper lean on, I feel more comfortable turning left then right but sometimes just nail the corners and yes I do find the high speed handling a bit touchy!

    As for hill climbing I've never tried (that I can remember) using the drops, instead either using the hoods (my normal position) or the flat's either side of the stem, which I find easier for steeper/longer climbs as I feel it opens my chest a lot and allows me to breathe easier. I find the hoods are quite useful if I'm going to get out of the saddle and "dance" the bike up a climb (as such around London!) and will normally switch up a few gears when I do this as I can get a bit more force down then.

    When I first got the bike I took it out with the handlebars at the highest point, got 10 yards up the road and turned around to drop em. Once I was lower I felt much better and have left them there since.

    So to sum up really I'm happy enough with my bike as is, in fact the new wheels/tyres have made it feel a lot more responsive and faster then it was before and even then I wasn't un-happy with the performance I was getting out of it. I guess until I ride a "better" bike I'm not really going to understand the mechanics of stiff BB/rear triangle and frame flex as I can't really tell if I'm getting any on this one! I'd agree with ITB tho, that a bike fitting service would probably be your best bet, I think Dever offer such a service if you want to go back to them for your next steed?
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  • jonginge
    jonginge Posts: 5,945
    As for hill climbing I've never tried (that I can remember) using the drops, instead either using the hoods (my normal position) or the flat's either side of the stem, which I find easier for steeper/longer climbs as I feel it opens my chest a lot and allows me to breathe easier. I find the hoods are quite useful if I'm going to get out of the saddle and "dance" the bike up a climb (as such around London!) and will normally switch up a few gears when I do this as I can get a bit more force down then.
    +1
    Maybe we should start calling DDD il pirata? Or maybe the Cobra ;)
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  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Clever Pun wrote:
    DDD's Mum wrote:
    Leave him alone Greg66, he's big boned

    :evil:
    Sewinman wrote:
    Does it really make a huge amount of difference? I mean all this technical stuff? I have a Trek 1.2 which is very basic, entry level road bike...but I think I would give the bike the huge benefit of doubt over me when apportioning blame for my slow riding.

    Yes the technical stuff does make a huge difference to how well you can ride a bike.

    Yes it also comes down to the person on the bike.

    Both instances are correct. If I had a stiffer, lighter, more responsive, better fitting bike with a solid bottom bracket (mine is now making a clicking sound only when I ride the thing...) I'd get up hills quicker. If I was 2 stone lighter, remembered my breathing, improved my pedal technique, spun instead of mashed and MTFU. I'd have got up the hill.
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    biondino wrote:
    Hmm, DDD, could it actually be the front end which is being deadened - i.e. made less nippy and responsive - by you putting more weight on it? Either way, I think I'm baffled.
    DDD wrote:
    (pushing all my weight on the hoods isn't the same as doing so on the drops - different centre of gravity)

    Again, I suspect this is simply a matter of getting used to it. If anything, the lower position of the drops could mean that they are taking more of your bodyweight giving you less weight with which to power the pedals. Clearly this isn't happening to you. Once again, I don't have an answer other than standing on the hoods will quickly become second nature.

    In their upmost postion i.e. all the spacers under the handlebars the drops are actually quite high on the bike. The SCR doesn't have a really aggressive riding position no matter how the internet photos look. What I'm trying to explain may only be specific to me and the union between my bodyshape and the bike. But with the handlebars in that position using the drops on Denmark Hill (from Herne Hill Train Station towards Denmark Hill) was far easier than riding on the hoods. Doing it that way was also the first time I got up the hill with noticably less difficulty. I also tried this out on several other hills and it was the same. Sorry I can't explain it any clearer.
    DDD sorry if I missed it already but when you bought the bike did they do any kind of fitting or make recommendations as to which sort of bike would suit your style/frame etc.?

    No. But I trust DeVer, they do want to shift bikes but are arguably one of the most reputable top notch bike stores in South London. When I bought the SCR3 I sat on it and at £350 (down from £450 - £500) it really was a case of that will do (I was in a rush - on my lunch break at work). I don't think its that poorly fitted though if at all.

    Next bike I buy (now that I know what I'm looking for) I'm taking it on a proper test ride...
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • There's a lot of 'if' in there DDD!

    If I was built like Victoria Pendleton instead of Victoria Wood I'd be a lot faster up hills.

    I reckon you just want a new bike to put on your new wheels... in which case go for it! Use the SCR for commuting and buy a weekend Wilier!

    You know you want to... :twisted:
  • jonginge
    jonginge Posts: 5,945
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    Next bike I buy (now that I know what I'm looking for) I'm taking it on a proper test ride...
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  • A little knowledge is dangerous!

    DDD as far as I can gather your a commuter and stay in London (what hills???). I think you 'fessed up recently that you dont do weekend riding, I also gather you dont race!

    You seem to be talking like your on the pro tour and your having a discussion with your team manager about an under performing bike! They only thing you should be worrying about it fit. If it doesnt fit, sell it and get a new one. If it does fit, you are going to have to live with the short comings of the bike you can buy within your budget and just try and get the very best you can. Test ride as many as possible.

    What I do suspect though is that this is all pish and you will end up splashing out on a top of the range bike regardless! See what those Fulcrums have started!
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  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    As I have the slightly older model then your (DDD) bike I can offer some input I believe.

    My bike is 2 sizes larger than yours, you have a medium, then there is Medium/Large (which I would have bought if they had it) and Large the one that I have. Aside from that and the paint work we have the same frame.
    For me I'm still learning how to best handle the bike through fast corners as I don't feel confident getting a proper lean on, I feel more comfortable turning left then right but sometimes just nail the corners and yes I do find the high speed handling a bit touchy!

    I've been riding bikes since before I was 10, sure not as high a pedigree as others but I've had some insane 'off's' going low into fast corners so I feel comfortable in saying this: As fantastic as the SCR is I have no great faith in its ability to lean into a fast corner. My Giant Escape M2 (though completely different bike) was more sure footed in corners even when the pedal use to clip the road...
    As for hill climbing I've never tried (that I can remember) using the drops, instead either using the hoods (my normal position) or the flat's either side of the stem, which I find easier for steeper/longer climbs as I feel it opens my chest a lot and allows me to breathe easier.

    You once said that you found the riding position of the SCR too high with all the spacers under the handle bars and promptly lowered the bars (remember I was complaining about the high position at freewheel). I'm talking about using the drops up a hill with all the spacers under the handlebars. With the handlebars at their highest the they really aren't drops intended to get you low and streamlined. Standing up on them in that position they take a lot of weight going forward.
    I find the hoods are quite useful if I'm going to get out of the saddle and "dance" the bike up a climb (as such around London!) and will normally switch up a few gears when I do this as I can get a bit more force down then.

    I do this too! I do like the way the bike dances, that's one feature Iove the frame allows you to get over the bike and swing...
    When I first got the bike I took it out with the handlebars at the highest point, got 10 yards up the road and turned around to drop em. Once I was lower I felt much better and have left them there since.

    See above. It took me longer to find a good handlebar position - I'm not truly satisfied with the position now but its the overal best of what I could find.
    I'd agree with ITB tho, that a bike fitting service would probably be your best bet, I think Dever offer such a service if you want to go back to them for your next steed?

    I'm thinking either Cyclopolis for a Cannondale or Condor for my next bike.

    Don't get me wrong I love my bike, it does the commuting job well. I am also aware of my short comings when it comes to cycling. I'm slower than you and not as skillful as Greg, but there are shortcomings from my bike that I notice. Also if not to improve this bike, addressing these issue, making clear what issues are down to me and what are the bike will give me a greater body of knowledge when I purchase my next bike.
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    A little knowledge is dangerous!

    DDD as far as I can gather your a commuter and stay in London (what hills???).
    All hills and distance is relative to the individual. If my imagination tells me I'm the next Lance Armstong and the reality of pain justifies the decent I'm climbing then I'm a superstar pro racer waiting to be discovered. :P
    I think you 'fessed up recently that you dont do weekend riding, I also gather you dont race!

    I do ride on weekends. I've always ridden on weekends when I could. I just didn't go and do Surrey Hills or Richmond Park like others. I haven't ridden on a weekend for a while because I have been exceptionally busy, what with moving house, christmas and the like. Just to make that clear for all.
    You seem to be talking like your on the pro tour and your having a discussion with your team manager about an under performing bike! They only thing you should be worrying about it fit. If it doesnt fit, sell it and get a new one. If it does fit, you are going to have to live with the short comings of the bike you can buy within your budget and just try and get the very best you can. Test ride as many as possible.

    What I do suspect though is that this is all pish and you will end up splashing out on a top of the range bike regardless! See what those Fulcrums have started!

    You see those boy racers with crap driving ability and modified cars that are no faster than the standard versions. Well that's me with a bike!

    I realise that I could shut up and just ride my bike.

    But I like talking and understanding bikes, I like playing with my bike and I like riding my bike. I like spending money on it and upgrading it. The cost of everything car related means I'll never be a petrol head and to be honest I never was. Even before I was 12 and tried to convert my mountain bike into a BMX (and failed) I've enjoyed cycling. There were days I'd go to Evans in Croydon waiting for a 109 bus, imagining what it would be like to ride whatever bike caught my eye that week.

    Now that I've got a modest disposable income and time I can truly sink myself into this nearly all consuming hobby (the other hobbies are comic accumilation and HiFi).

    Understanding my bike and its short comings - even though I am clearly no racer - is just interesting to me.

    Yes I will end up splashing cash on a new bike (if I had it my way I'd upgrade the SCR to 105 components, carbon wraped handlebars and stem as well as buy a new bike).

    Its silly I know and I know my hill issues are mostly down to me. But this is still knowledge I'd like to have. It's my passion after all.
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    edited January 2009
    There's a lot of 'if' in there DDD!

    If I was built like Victoria Pendleton instead of Victoria Wood I'd be a lot faster up hills.

    I reckon you just want a new bike to put on your new wheels... in which case go for it! Use the SCR for commuting and buy a weekend Wilier!

    You know you want to... :twisted:

    Its already a done deal. The only thing stopping me is that in my heart I know I'm not good enough for a Wilier Izoard....
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • Fair play to you DDD. I hope you find the bike that statisfies in all departments (And you can afford it when you do!!)

    :D
    Cannondale F500
    Peugeot Fixed Gear
    Specialized Hardrock
    Baordman Team Carbon
    Haro Freestyler Sport 1984
    Coming Soon...Canyon Nerve AM 7.0