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LBS Advised Me Not To Buy A Giant Defy?

joshchapman4joshchapman4 Posts: 7
edited February 2013 in Road beginners
Recently, i've been looking to make the transition from MTB to a road bike. I phoned up my LBS and asked if they could get hold of one for me, and they firstly told me that they weighed considerably more than the Specialized Allez. Then, after I mentioned that I had no experience with road bikes, they asked how flexible I was and when I told them I found touching my toes difficult they suggested that I may not be comfortable with the riding position of a competitive road bike (such as the Defy and Allez) and suggested buying a Specialized Secteur.
I found this slightly disappointing, as i've looked at the Defy and Allez online and have heard great things about them. Could it really be the case that the posture of a competitive road bike would make them unsuitable for me until i've gotten used to something like the Secteur? If it makes any difference, i'm 17 years old and 5 foot 7.

Many thanks.
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  • You probably rang a Specialized dealer who doesn't do other makes of bikes.

    Mt LBS is such a place - if you don't want Specialized, then go elsewhere - everything is too much trouble even if its in the Madisons trade catalogue and they order every day ;)
  • elderoneelderone Posts: 1,410
    The defy is a great bike choice and will serve you well.Just make sure what ever bike you get fits you properly.Have a read around the forum,lots of info here.
    Oh and welcome.
    Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori
  • You probably rang a Specialized dealer who doesn't do other makes of bikes.

    Mt LBS is such a place - if you don't want Specialized, then go elsewhere - everything is too much trouble even if its in the Madisons trade catalogue and they order every day ;)

    Why wouldn't they have gone with his other choice of an Allez then?

    Sounds like the advice given was perfectly reasonable. Go for a more comfort or "sportive" geometry and enjoy your riding rather than trying to compromise your own flexibility and comfort for race geometry that won't actually suit what you're actually going to do with your riding.

    Of course that flies completely in the face of everyone's thinking because we all ride race bikes thinking it will make us Sir Brad or Fenton rather than a decent sportive frame because, in our mind, we'll be slower.
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • zx6manzx6man Posts: 1,092
    The defy's are "comfy" bikes though aren't they?
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    when I told them I found touching my toes difficult they suggested that I may not be comfortable with the riding position of a competitive road bike (such as the Defy and Allez) and suggested buying a Specialized Secteur.
    The Secteur is a more upright riding position that's true ...

    I can't touch my toes without bending my knees ... but I ride an Allez - and rode on a track bike in an even more aggressive position without issue.
    The bike you get also depends on the riding you're going to be doing ...


    You need to get yourself on a bike of the right size and give it a go - that way you'll know what it feels like ..
  • BozmanBozman Posts: 2,518
    zx6man wrote:
    The defy's are "comfy" bikes though aren't they?

    +1

    Sportive type bike, the TCR is the aggressive model.
  • Slowbike wrote:
    You need to get yourself on a bike of the right size and give it a go - that way you'll know what it feels like ..

    The most sensible post on here.

    Get yourself back to the shop, or better still a number of shops, and try a few bikes for size. Ideally take them for a reasonable ride. You'll soon figure out for yourself which works and which doesn't, for you!*

    *And you'd be ahead of most of the people on here, 'cos 90% of the bikes are bought because of the name and the perception that the owner has of them and their ability to enhance his own ability (or lack of!).
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • Thanks guys! My dilema is that I do want an agressive bike - if I wanted a comfortable ride i'd take my MTB out. So basically, I'm just concerned i'm able to ride the bike without it being 'painful', even if it is uncomfortable?
  • styxdstyxd Posts: 3,234
    I cant remember the last time I had to touch my toes whilst riding my bike.
  • I've owned 2 Defys - my current one is a perfect fit; my previous one was a size too big. I think my current Defy is a great bike (fit, build quality, value, looks) but I bet I would have been just as comfy if I had bought the Trek Domane I also tried out.

    The key thing I learned was to try a bike out - for as long as possible - before buying. Ultimately getting the fit right would have been time better spent for me on my first bike than focusing mainly on Giant vs Spec vs Trek etc. Can only think that the advice from your LBS is most likely down to the fact that they don't sell Giants. And if they seem more interested in selling you what they have in stock rather than getting you fitted correctly, you might want to try somewhere else.
  • nochekmatenochekmate Posts: 3,460
    If you cannot touch your toes at 17, then there's no hope for you - you need a zimmer frame rather than a Defy :shock:
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    Alihisgreat won't be happy about this one! :lol:
    Faster than a tent.......
  • nochekmate wrote:
    If you cannot touch your toes at 17, then there's no hope for you - you need a zimmer frame rather than a Defy :shock:

    Just to clarify, I do mean without bending my knees. :?
  • lotus49lotus49 Posts: 763
    I can touch my toes without bending my knees but I'm no spring chicken and I find my Defy 3 surprisingly comfortable.

    My perineum takes a bit of a pounding on rough surfaces but I don't believe any other bike would be any different. Apart from that I have no complaints about comfort despite not having spent a material amount of time on a bike for thirty years.

    I suspect the LBS has an ulterior motive in saying this. The Defy 3 is not an aggressive racing bike and if you want a decent road bike in that sort of price range, the Defy 3 or Allez are the most highly regarded.
  • dabberdabber Posts: 1,833
    I'm 65 and have a Defy 3 (2010) as my winter bike. Absolutely fine, very comfortable and more relaxed than my Wilier.
    “You may think that; I couldn’t possibly comment!”

    Wilier Cento Uno SR/Wilier Mortirolo/Specialized Roubaix Comp/Kona Hei Hei/Calibre Bossnut
  • lotus49 wrote:

    I suspect the LBS has an ulterior motive in saying this. The Defy 3 is not an aggressive racing bike and if you want a decent road bike in that sort of price range, the Defy 3 or Allez are the most highly regarded.

    Alongside the Boardman Team, Moda Rubato, Cube Attempt, KHS Flite, Felt Z95, Scott Speedster etc.etc.

    They just happen to get the most coverage because they are from the biggest manufacturers.
    Trail fun - Transition Bandit
    Road - Wilier Izoard Centaur/Cube Agree C62 Disc
    Allround - Cotic Solaris
  • The Allez Elite and Defy 3 (composite) were the last two on my short list before I finally went for the Defy.

    The difference was so marginal, I should think I'd have been equally happy with either, but I've been very pleased with the Defy, and it's not particularly racy.

    So I'd take the advice with a pinch of salt, really. Try them, see how you find them. And if they won't let you try them, go somewhere else.
    Is the gorilla tired yet?
  • smoggystevesmoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    Slowbike wrote:
    You need to get yourself on a bike of the right size and give it a go - that way you'll know what it feels like ..

    The most sensible post on here.

    Get yourself back to the shop, or better still a number of shops, and try a few bikes for size. Ideally take them for a reasonable ride. You'll soon figure out for yourself which works and which doesn't, for you!*

    *And you'd be ahead of most of the people on here, 'cos 90% of the bikes are bought because of the name and the perception that the owner has of them and their ability to enhance his own ability (or lack of!).

    +1

    No two people are the same. You need to sit on a bike and see how it fits to you. Not the other way around. I must say anyone telling you what bike you need over a phone without even looking at your build is either just trying to push a bike on you or are just plain dumb. Shop around as if you were looking at buying a car. Forget about branding and look at fit and feel. For your first bike you need to get something that will feel natural or an uncomfortable bike could either make you ache or cause injury and you wont enjoy riding it.
  • Giant Defy is an awesome bike, I own a Defy 2 and I am in love with it( I cant touch my toes either and I can not see the connection between this and cycling either). For a beginner road cyclist I reckon you can do a lot worse than Giant Defy .....just make sure you get the size right and have the bike set up properly .i.e fitted. But that is just my humble opinion.....
  • Slowbike wrote:
    You need to get yourself on a bike of the right size and give it a go - that way you'll know what it feels like ..

    The most sensible post on here.

    Get yourself back to the shop, or better still a number of shops, and try a few bikes for size. Ideally take them for a reasonable ride. You'll soon figure out for yourself which works and which doesn't, for you!*

    *And you'd be ahead of most of the people on here, 'cos 90% of the bikes are bought because of the name and the perception that the owner has of them and their ability to enhance his own ability (or lack of!).

    +1

    No two people are the same. You need to sit on a bike and see how it fits to you. Not the other way around. I must say anyone telling you what bike you need over a phone without even looking at your build is either just trying to push a bike on you or are just plain dumb. Shop around as if you were looking at buying a car. Forget about branding and look at fit and feel. For your first bike you need to get something that will feel natural or an uncomfortable bike could either make you ache or cause injury and you wont enjoy riding it.


    Listen to this guy! Very sensible advice!
  • Mikey41Mikey41 Posts: 690
    Thanks guys! My dilema is that I do want an agressive bike - if I wanted a comfortable ride i'd take my MTB out. So basically, I'm just concerned i'm able to ride the bike without it being 'painful', even if it is uncomfortable?
    Bear in mind that "comfortable" is a relative term. Road bikes have a much firmer ride than MTB's and are much more direct and responsive. A Defy or Allez are a couple of the more comfortable road bikes, but the ride is still firm, and the handling still responsive. A more aggressive bike such as the Giant TCR's will be even stiffer.

    If you are looking at getting into racing, then something like the TCR would be the one to go for, but if it's just leisure and Sportive riding, then the Defy or the Allez would be excellent. They aren't as popular and well regarded as they are by accident.

    The most important thing is that the bike fits you properly, so try out as many as you can to make sure. Not from that LBS though, it sounds like they just want to sell you what they have in stock rather than what you really want.
    Giant Defy 2 (2012)
    Giant Defy Advanced 2 (2013)
    Giant Revel 1 Ltd (2013)
    Strava
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    I have a defy and I'm very happy with it. I thought they had a reputation for having a more relaxed geometry. I'm no racing snake and its fine for this 60 year old codger and the sportives I do
  • I also have a defy and have put several thousand miles on on it - it's a comfy bike and certainly not what I'd call an agressive geometry. Its a really good bike though and I enjoy riding it. I'd say it's a good choice and if the LBS wont sell you one then find somewhere else that will.
  • alihisgreatalihisgreat Posts: 3,872
    Rolf F wrote:
    Alihisgreat won't be happy about this one! :lol:

    Correct!
    Recently, i've been looking to make the transition from MTB to a road bike. I phoned up my LBS and asked if they could get hold of one for me, and they firstly told me that they weighed considerably more than the Specialized Allez. Then, after I mentioned that I had no experience with road bikes, they asked how flexible I was and when I told them I found touching my toes difficult they suggested that I may not be comfortable with the riding position of a competitive road bike (such as the Defy and Allez) and suggested buying a Specialized Secteur.
    I found this slightly disappointing, as i've looked at the Defy and Allez online and have heard great things about them. Could it really be the case that the posture of a competitive road bike would make them unsuitable for me until i've gotten used to something like the Secteur? If it makes any difference, i'm 17 years old and 5 foot 7.

    Many thanks.

    If you're 17 you can't touch your toes because you don't stretch and work on your flexibility I presume? You should be able to dramatically improve your flexibility in a few weeks with a bit of effort.

    but LBS would potentially have been correct in recommending a Secteur if you really do have serious flexibility issues because it is more upright than the defy.. but for most people it shouldn't be a problem.

    and regardless of that your position on the bike will depend a lot on your body proportions and where you sit compared to the sizing of the bike

    eg here is my defy that I ride with a relatively aggressive position:
    1819af68575d11e2b4ee22000a1fbe6d_7.jpg

    But you could easily run it with all the spacers and gradually adjust to a more aggressive position.

    lotus49 wrote:
    I can touch my toes without bending my knees but I'm no spring chicken and I find my Defy 3 surprisingly comfortable.

    My perineum takes a bit of a pounding on rough surfaces but I don't believe any other bike would be any different. Apart from that I have no complaints about comfort despite not having spent a material amount of time on a bike for thirty years.

    I suspect the LBS has an ulterior motive in saying this. The Defy 3 is not an aggressive racing bike and if you want a decent road bike in that sort of price range, the Defy 3 or Allez are the most highly regarded.

    You may benefit from a different saddle and a bike fit?!

    My suggestion is not to sit on your perineum!
  • Thanks for all the help guys, this is my first thread on this forum and I surprised by how helpful everyone is! Whilst I don't currently have any plans to race or ride competitively, I do feel that because I may want to at some point in the future I should try to buy a bike versatile enough to be suitable for this. Also, I do race myself against the clock when cycling, with the primary aim of reducing my time so I feel that more agressive geometry is possibly necessary.
    On the other hand, the bike may also be used to commute to college, which is about 7.5 miles away from me so it should be appropriate for this. Any further advice with regards to the sort of 'geometry' (a relatively new term to me in this context) I should be looking at? Would the Defy or the TCR better suit these circumstances?

    Thanks Again!!!
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    Ok. Another bit of perspective - my Allez is fairly aggressive - but less so than race bikes - so it's already a compromise - it's more aggressive than my tricross though.

    I jumped back on my Allez tonight - just a turn around the block - and noticed the difference in position and firmness of feel compared to the tricross - cant wait for some better weather to get back out on it properly!
  • Mikey41Mikey41 Posts: 690
    Defy would be better to start with, especially for a college commute as you can mount a rack on it for pannier bags. Commuting on a road bike with a heavy backpack is not ideal.

    I "race" myself too if I'm honest using Strava. Got a PB on a segment today as it happens. I'm getting stronger and quicker, but I'm nowhere near the point where the bike is holding me back, and I doubt I ever will be. I would be no faster on a TCR. Give me Wiggos bike and I'd still be no faster :lol:

    Equally, a £300 Triban 3 would not make me any slower either.

    Putting it bluntly, any road bike, be it a Defy, Allez, Secteur, Trek 1.5, {insert other bike here}, is going to be a lot more aggressive to ride on the road than an MTB.
    Giant Defy 2 (2012)
    Giant Defy Advanced 2 (2013)
    Giant Revel 1 Ltd (2013)
    Strava
  • Thanks for all the help guys, this is my first thread on this forum and I surprised by how helpful everyone is! Whilst I don't currently have any plans to race or ride competitively, I do feel that because I may want to at some point in the future I should try to buy a bike versatile enough to be suitable for this. Also, I do race myself against the clock when cycling, with the primary aim of reducing my time so I feel that more agressive geometry is possibly necessary.
    On the other hand, the bike may also be used to commute to college, which is about 7.5 miles away from me so it should be appropriate for this. Any further advice with regards to the sort of 'geometry' (a relatively new term to me in this context) I should be looking at? Would the Defy or the TCR better suit these circumstances?

    Thanks Again!!!

    Just bought a Defy myself. Tried the TCR too and preferred the feel of the Defy (ie more upright, relaxed position) you can of course take the spacers out and jack up the seat a bit for a more aggressive position. I went for M/L but if you are between sizes the smaller size would give a more racy ride. I can wholeheartedly recommend Chris's bikes in Girton Cambs. He has been selling Giant for 15+ years so give him a call if unsure. He is an authority on Giant bike in particular. He also has a piece on his website about the difference between TCR/Defy and has ridden both extensively.
  • My LBS talked me into a Defy instead of a Felt F95 which I had wanted mostly on the basis of its glorious paint scheme. They saw the noob straight off and steered him away from the race geometry. The Defy was the correct advise. I also now appreciate their slight attempt to talk me out of the SPDs which I ignored - gota do it some time. I've fallen off 4 times in the last 6 weeks :evil:

    The only thing missing from the Defy is a soul.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    Trickle wrote:
    I've fallen off 4 times in the last 6 weeks :evil:
    Jeeze! Really?! How come?

    Last time I "fell off" was last summer when I came to a stop at the top of an incline waiting for a car to pass - it took a bit longer than I had allowed for and as I hadn't unclipped I fell over to the left into a bank ... the bank was at 45° so it wasn't much of a "fall" ...

    Perhaps I'm just not pushing it enough!
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