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Weight Obsession

ianwilliamsianwilliams Posts: 257
edited April 2013 in Road buying advice
This is probably going over old ground somewhat, but seeing the weight and spec of the bikes at RVV was fascinating.

Both Cancellara and Roelandt's were coming in 7.5-8kg, and Boonen's Tarmac from a couple of years' previous was similar.

As someone still reading and learning his way through cycling, I thought it was a wonderful countermeasure to the obsession with weight you see everywhere.
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  • goonzgoonz Posts: 3,106
    Only because there are UCI weight limitations means the bikes can't be less than 7.5kg I believe.

    Check out an article on here in General about a guy with a bike weighing under 4kg!
    Scott Speedster S20 Roadie for Speed
    Specialized Hardrock MTB for Lumps
    Specialized Langster SS for Ease
    Cinelli Mash Bolt Fixed for Pain
    n+1 is well and truly on track
    Strava http://app.strava.com/athletes/1608875
  • tomisitttomisitt Posts: 257
    The UCI weight limit is 6.8kg, but I guess on tough and relatively flat races like the cobbled classics then riders want robust rather than light.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    The bikes with the hidden motors always weigh more.
  • ianwilliamsianwilliams Posts: 257
    I just find it a very humbling reminder that the work is done in the gym and the roads rather than with the wallet!
  • goonzgoonz Posts: 3,106
    Well those guys could beat us all on cheap dual suspension mtbs from tesco even if we had the latest lightest carbon fibre bikes!
    Scott Speedster S20 Roadie for Speed
    Specialized Hardrock MTB for Lumps
    Specialized Langster SS for Ease
    Cinelli Mash Bolt Fixed for Pain
    n+1 is well and truly on track
    Strava http://app.strava.com/athletes/1608875
  • GabboGabbo Posts: 864
    Also the difference in weight loss has diminishing returns. People will now mock me for this, but studies have refuted claims that weight loss from components of the bike makes much of a difference.

    I use to have Cosmic Carbone SLE wheels on my bike, but I managed better hill times with my stock DT Axis which weighed a good 3-400 g more. I put this down to better stiffness. They certainly felt stiffer, with which my better hill times were consistent with.

    I genuinely don't think it makes that much of a difference. Of course, an 8kg bike and a 6kg bike would, but with this obsession with weight, it tends to be a matter of shaving a few grams here and there. Check out the guys at weight weenies. Shows the measures they'll go to in order to make their bike as light as possible.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,969
    I just find it a very humbling reminder that the work is done in the gym and the roads rather than with the wallet!

    Not sure about the gym bit....
  • nochekmatenochekmate Posts: 3,460
    goonz wrote:
    Well those guys could beat us all on cheap dual suspension mtbs from tesco even if we had the latest lightest carbon fibre bikes!

    Speak for yourself. Even at the age of nearly 50, I'd be happy to take up the challenge of a 10 mile TT event with them on that basis - cannot see even the pros averaging 25mph+ on a Tescos MTB.
  • I just find it a very humbling reminder that the work is done in the gym and the roads rather than with the wallet!

    Don't buy uprgades, ride up grades
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • Wirral_paulWirral_paul Posts: 2,476
    And we should all buy cheap 1.2L cars because they are perfectly capable of being driven at the speed limit and so are pretty much as quick as a Porsche in the real world.

    Why is it that so many seem to think people shouldnt buy a nice bike if they have the spare cash? Is it just those who cant afford it who rattle on about not buying fancy gear?? I think most are intelligent enough to know that several £k isnt going to see them winning the TdF this year - but ask on here because they want to spend some cash on the hobby they love! Personally, i dont need any more justification than that. Am i alone there?

    Lets just change the Road Buying forum to give a default reply to every question. "Triban 3 / Giant Defy" and "Mavic Askium / Shimano R500" should just about cover the lot i guess :D
  • Am i alone there?

    No 8)
    "You really think you can burn off sugar with exercise?" downhill paul
  • smoggystevesmoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    When racing on cobbles the extra weight brings extra stability. If you have a very light bike bouncing around underneath you its harder to the power down. You could waste more energy just trying to keep the thing under control than having a lighter bike would benefit you.

    For anyone that watched the race, the pile up that happened on the hill where people were literally wheel spinning on the cobbles. Any lighter i doubt they could even get up it. I know its only a bike but you need weight to help bring grip. Kind of like downforce on a race car.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,969
    And we should all buy cheap 1.2L cars because they are perfectly capable of being driven at the speed limit and so are pretty much as quick as a Porsche in the real world.

    Why is it that so many seem to think people shouldnt buy a nice bike if they have the spare cash? Is it just those who cant afford it who rattle on about not buying fancy gear?? I think most are intelligent enough to know that several £k isnt going to see them winning the TdF this year - but ask on here because they want to spend some cash on the hobby they love! Personally, i dont need any more justification than that. Am i alone there?

    Lets just change the Road Buying forum to give a default reply to every question. "Triban 3 / Giant Defy" and "Mavic Askium / Shimano R500" should just about cover the lot i guess :D

    And the award for 'over-reaction of the week' goes to.....
  • HoopdriverHoopdriver Posts: 2,023
    Imposter wrote:
    And we should all buy cheap 1.2L cars because they are perfectly capable of being driven at the speed limit and so are pretty much as quick as a Porsche in the real world.

    Why is it that so many seem to think people shouldnt buy a nice bike if they have the spare cash? Is it just those who cant afford it who rattle on about not buying fancy gear?? I think most are intelligent enough to know that several £k isnt going to see them winning the TdF this year - but ask on here because they want to spend some cash on the hobby they love! Personally, i dont need any more justification than that. Am i alone there?

    Lets just change the Road Buying forum to give a default reply to every question. "Triban 3 / Giant Defy" and "Mavic Askium / Shimano R500" should just about cover the lot i guess :D

    And the award for 'over-reaction of the week' goes to.....
    +1 on that.

    Get real, guy
  • ianwilliamsianwilliams Posts: 257
    Hoopdriver wrote:
    Imposter wrote:

    And the award for 'over-reaction of the week' goes to.....
    +1 on that.

    Get real, guy

    Yeah. I was talking about weight, not money.
  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    Reduce weight on a bike for that reason alone. I do it not to make me faster as I don't think it does much but becuase I like trying out new bits of kit and seeing what works. I have been happy with alot of the lighter kit I have bought or modified simply because it has it works and looks great.

    There is some maths you can do to show what difference weight makes and it naff all in reality on the flat on the hills it does make some difference. Climbing a 3% gradient at 20 kph say on a 9 kg bike (me 81 kg) will show 211W bt on a 7 kg bike 206W are required. So weight loss is of limited benefit and can only be worth it if you do drop alot of weight. Changing a couple of things on a tight budget and sheeding 500g will achiev nothing. A bigger spend to shed 2kg or more will yeild some marginal gains. Train more is the answer.

    But hey I am a weight weenie and have even manchined out a braze mech adatapter to shave 8g of one of my road bikes and use very flexy KCNC CB1 brakes. So go drop that weight but be nder no illusions about how little it will do.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • FransJacquesFransJacques Posts: 2,148
    The point has been made several times that the UCI weight limit hasn't really prevented lighter individual components, we still have 670 gram frames, but instead it's allowed set ups such as aero rims, aero frames, electric shifting, power meters, stiffer componens etc. to be used without a major competitive disadvantage.

    If all riders cared about was just weight they'd be on GEL 280s with 20 17 gauge spokes but clealy they have other priorities. Power and aero are big ones at the moment...

    I love the fact that a 1200+ gram so-called 'low modulus' frame can still be ridden in anger to a podium place. For their faults, Lotto are such a cool team - more Belgian and gritty than the pretty-boy spoiled brats over at OPL.

    Ok, this went from a "fat bikes are people too" to a Lotto love fest. Even with the yellow on the shoulder they have the best design on the road.
    When a cyclist has a disagreement with a car; it's not who's right, it's who's left.
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,425
    I agree with the earlier observations that heavier bikes can handle better on difficult surfaces & also descending to some extent. Not on the climbs though!
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
  • t4tomot4tomo Posts: 2,643
    I could shed the whole UCI bike weight limit with ease and still be a tad overweight.

    However I like Pies and beer so i'm happy for my cyccle journeys to take marginally longer.

    I don't get the weight weenie illness. I mean 8g shed of a mech adapter ?WTF? - just have a shave it would be quicker and have same effect weight wise and make you look less liek a vagrant :D
    Bianchi Infinito CV
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  • cyclecliniccycleclinic Posts: 6,865
    I did it because I wanted too, to see how light a cheap braxe on adapter could be, no other reason. I probably won't do it again. However my illness is no were near as bad as folk on weight weenies who go to extreme lengths.
    http://www.thecycleclinic.co.uk -wheel building and other stuff.
  • ianwilliamsianwilliams Posts: 257
    Yeah, I get that side of it. I've spent thousands on guitars and their details - such as the specific battery brand used in a single FX pedal - to get things right for me. I don't think anyone in the crowd would ever notice the difference in tone, but it was what inspired me. And so it played its role.

    No substitute for learning the instrument, of course. And where I am at with cycling it is worth reminding myself of that!
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 27,707
    This is probably going over old ground somewhat, but seeing the weight and spec of the bikes at RVV was fascinating.

    Both Cancellara and Roelandt's were coming in 7.5-8kg, and Boonen's Tarmac from a couple of years' previous was similar.

    As someone still reading and learning his way through cycling, I thought it was a wonderful countermeasure to the obsession with weight you see everywhere.

    You only really need a very light bike if you are going full on an alpine stage or a hill climb. The races Cancellara wins don't require sub 7kg bikes. You can lose a race for a failure, but you can't win it because your bike weighs 1 kg less... A no brainer.
    The obsession for extralight equipment is typical of lardy mamils
  • BozmanBozman Posts: 2,518
    I've been using my Izalco all winter which is the grand total of 1.75Ibs heavier than my Look, I can notice a major difference in the ride, especially on the hills but I'm going for stiffness rather than the weight.
    Previously I had a weightier winter bike and that was hell and I couldn't wait to get back on the lighter bike, now that's not much of an issue and times on all routes are virtually identical, but the ride isn't as pleasurable.
  • oceheboceheb Posts: 124
    Comparing the new carbon bike to my old alu spesh aliez, the acceleration is a big difference (not sure if I need this), climbing is better a bit, overall riding experience a more enjoyable, not sure its comparable to the price difference.
    ______________________
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  • Bike weight isn't everything. I've been riding a Carrera TDF for the past couple of years and whilst its no slim jim I found that with the right gearing (and putting the miles in) the weight isn't too much of an issue. My mate rides a Forme Plateau ,which is probably a couple of kgs lighter, with a standard double (and 12-25cassette) and he struggles to keep up on hills (and this isn't down to fitness, we are around the same level). Plus with a heavier bike you descend a little bit quicker and you'll end up fitter for it to.
  • My current Venge is 4.9kg and it helps through the constant hills of Devon and Cornwall my Allez is about 10Kg :D so during the winter i do the work and build everything up (winter training)
  • Essex ManEssex Man Posts: 283
    I wonder how many of us notice the difference between carrying 2 full water bottles and not
  • bigpiklebigpikle Posts: 1,690
    Heavy bikes don't help training - they just make you go slower. Just because the bike might weigh 2kg more you don't suddenly produce more power from your legs when you ride it to compensate. Going up hills your power to weight is worse so you go slower - it's no magic training ingredient as you'll produce exactly the same power when you jump on your light bike so will see marginal improvements.

    It might be you work harder to keep up with your mates on their lighter bikes, but that's because you are working harder that you might see improvement. Work just as hard on a light bike and you'll see the exact same improvements as you'd get on your heavy bike...
    Your Past is Not Your Potential...
  • carrockcarrock Posts: 1,103
    My current Venge is 4.9kg )

    :shock:

    Are you sure?
  • Bigpikle wrote:
    Heavy bikes don't help training - they just make you go slower. Just because the bike might weigh 2kg more you don't suddenly produce more power from your legs when you ride it to compensate. Going up hills your power to weight is worse so you go slower - it's no magic training ingredient as you'll produce exactly the same power when you jump on your light bike so will see marginal improvements.

    It might be you work harder to keep up with your mates on their lighter bikes, but that's because you are working harder that you might see improvement. Work just as hard on a light bike and you'll see the exact same improvements as you'd get on your heavy bike...

    I'd say a heavy bike (whatever that means) helps with training/fitness if you then ride a lighter bike for an event or over the summer months, no? I'll find out in the next few weeks as I've just upgraded my bike to a Defy 1 (which is quite a bit lighter and stiffer than my TDF). I guess also, as others have mentioned, that stiffness will also be a factor.

    I wouldn't say I work too much harder because if anything my set-up makes its slighty easier. I used to run a standard double and 12-26, the switch to a compact (whilst keeping the same cassette) made a difference. And that was my main point really. The bike might weigh around 12kgs but with the right gearing (and with putting in quality miles rather than bashing out as many as possible) the weight shouldn't be too much of a negative factor

    Anyway, I think the point of the OP was the whole obsession with shaving grams not kgs.
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