Giant Defy Composite 1 alternative?

Elfed
Elfed Posts: 459
edited February 2014 in Road buying advice
Hi guys, currently riding an aluminium Giant Defy with full 105 and wanting to buy my first carbon framed bike.

I've been looking at a Giant Defy Composite 1 with full 6800 except brakes, which when paid with cash can be had for a discounted £1400, rather than the full £1595 on 0% finance. For this price I could ask them to swap the brakes for the 6800, add 6800 pedals, Swisstop Green pads and folding Gatorskins and still come in under £1600, leaving future money for a good wheel upgrade and handing down the old wheels to the alloy Defy for winter training.

I know this is their base carbon frame and ideally I'd love something more exotic from a more exclusive brand, but for this price with a lifetime frame warranty and not needing to go the 0% route it's a bit hard to ignore, whereas other brands with 6800 come up for far more money, except Planet X, Ribble, Dolan, etc.

There's always the option of getting a better frame with the same spec 105 as I've already got, such as the Defy Advanced 2 which would probably be £1600, but then it wouldn't feel so much of an upgrade.

Any convincing arguments against?

Comments

  • dj58
    dj58 Posts: 2,221
    Depends on what your priority is, better carbon frame and lower groupset or base carbon frame and higher 11 speed groupset. Do you want a change from Giant or are you happy to stick to what you know? The cash deal you mention does seem like a good one. Whether you would notice the difference between the Comp 1 and the Advanced 2 is something only you can determine by test riding.

    As for the alternative makes of bike, is it possible for you to contact your local club and see what others are riding and ask their opinions?
  • gimpl
    gimpl Posts: 269
    See if you can get last years model which has the Ultegra brakes and better wheels too. Probably cheaper as well - I also prefer the colour.
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    edited February 2014
    DJ58 wrote:
    Depends on what your priority is, better carbon frame and lower groupset or base carbon frame and higher 11 speed groupset. Do you want a change from Giant or are you happy to stick to what you know? The cash deal you mention does seem like a good one. Whether you would notice the difference between the Comp 1 and the Advanced 2 is something only you can determine by test riding.

    As for the alternative makes of bike, is it possible for you to contact your local club and see what others are riding and ask their opinions?

    I've not ridden a carbon framed bike so not sure what the better Defy Advanced would offer over the Composite's frame. I know it'll be lighter but would I notice the other benefits having only ridden aluminium, such as both frame's different level of stiffness?

    As for the better groupset, yes, I'd definitely prefer 6800 over 105. 11 speed is what everything's tapering down to and I'm sure the next generation 105 will feature this, plus I've already got 10 speed 5700 on my current bike.

    I'm not fixed on Giant, but the Defy has served me well and as all three bikes share exactly the same geometry it would be pretty simple transferring measurements. I fancy the Trek Domane 4.7 but it's £2300, the lesser models don't come with the 6800 crankset, one of the reasons why I think the Defy Comp 1 for £1400 is a good deal.
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    Gimpl wrote:
    See if you can get last years model which has the Ultegra brakes and better wheels too. Probably cheaper as well - I also prefer the colour.

    Is this the 2013 Defy Comp 1 you're talking about? Better wheels but 6700, the 2014 has the lower grade wheels but 6800.
    If it's the Defy Advanced then I'm not sure, probably still wouldn't have 6800.
  • gimpl
    gimpl Posts: 269
    Elfed wrote:
    Gimpl wrote:
    See if you can get last years model which has the Ultegra brakes and better wheels too. Probably cheaper as well - I also prefer the colour.

    Is this the 2013 Defy Comp 1 you're talking about? Better wheels but 6700, the 2014 has the lower grade wheels but 6800.
    If it's the Defy Advanced then I'm not sure, probably still wouldn't have 6800.

    Yes it is the 2013 Composite 1 I was talking about - googled it and you might pick one up for around £1,100. That's quite a saving for better wheels and brakes - do you really need the extra gear ? I've got one and it is ace, can't say I have ever searched for another gear but I'm used to it. It's a bit like my first car that 'only' had four gears, my current car has eight ! Sure it's smoother but never really noticed it being lurchy in my old car, you just adapt your driving/riding style accordingly to smooth things out.
  • crankycrank
    crankycrank Posts: 1,830
    Elfed wrote:
    I've not ridden a carbon framed bike so not sure what the better Defy Advanced would offer over the Composite's frame. I know it'll be lighter but would I notice the other benefits having only ridden aluminium, such as both frame's different level of stiffness?
    Do yourself a big favour and get a test ride before you spent a load of money on something you may not even like. It's easy to get infatuated with all the new and exotic bike gear available but this doesn't always mean it will be better for you. You may even find you prefer what you have over something more expensive. I've seen far too many times people buying without riding first and being very disappointed after they have already plopped down the money.
  • dj58
    dj58 Posts: 2,221
    Elfed are you aware of this http://www.test-ride.co.uk/
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    Gimpl wrote:
    Elfed wrote:
    Gimpl wrote:
    See if you can get last years model which has the Ultegra brakes and better wheels too. Probably cheaper as well - I also prefer the colour.

    Is this the 2013 Defy Comp 1 you're talking about? Better wheels but 6700, the 2014 has the lower grade wheels but 6800.
    If it's the Defy Advanced then I'm not sure, probably still wouldn't have 6800.

    Yes it is the 2013 Composite 1 I was talking about - googled it and you might pick one up for around £1,100. That's quite a saving for better wheels and brakes - do you really need the extra gear ? I've got one and it is ace, can't say I have ever searched for another gear but I'm used to it. It's a bit like my first car that 'only' had four gears, my current car has eight ! Sure it's smoother but never really noticed it being lurchy in my old car, you just adapt your driving/riding style accordingly to smooth things out.

    Maybe I don't need that extra gear but it would be good to have the latest groupset, and from what I've read 6800 is supposed to be really good, an improvement on the already excellent 6700 even.

    As for your 8 speed car, sounds very nice, mine's only got 6 :(
    And no, I'd hate to go back to my 4 speed mk2 Ford Escort :D:D
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    DJ58 wrote:
    Elfed are you aware of this http://www.test-ride.co.uk/

    Thanks for that link, I had no idea such a thing existed, I'll look into it and see what's possible.

    As I'm 6'6" I need an xl frame and dealers don't usually have those sizes in stock, so a quick test ride isn't really possible. Maybe in more populated areas, but in this area there are only two bike shops, who for space issues only stock the more common sizes, which is totally understandable as 75% or more of riders would probably fall into this category.

    Another thought I've had is instead of buying a new bike, is buy a decent set of handmade wheels(too heavy for factory 100kg) and a Garmin 510 with HRM and cadence, which will be transferable to the future bike.
  • jewbs
    jewbs Posts: 139
    have a look at Pauls cycles web site, they are based in Dereham in Norfolk but they have a lot last year model bikes with very good discounted prices you may be able to pick up a better frame and specced bike for your budget.
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    jewbs wrote:
    have a look at Pauls cycles web site, they are based in Dereham in Norfolk but they have a lot last year model bikes with very good discounted prices you may be able to pick up a better frame and specced bike for your budget.

    Some good offers but not in my size, the Defy Comp 1 is still looking a very good deal for £1400 though.
  • gimpl
    gimpl Posts: 269
    You wont be disappointed. I'm 6'4" and 98kg on an XL and I love it. Can't wait to get back on it once the weather improves. Currently riding around on my Rapid with mudguards etc.
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    Gimpl wrote:
    You wont be disappointed. I'm 6'4" and 98kg on an XL and I love it. Can't wait to get back on it once the weather improves. Currently riding around on my Rapid with mudguards etc.

    Slightly off topic, what wheels do you ride, still on the factory fitted or upgrades>? Thanks.
  • gimpl
    gimpl Posts: 269
    Elfed wrote:
    Gimpl wrote:
    You wont be disappointed. I'm 6'4" and 98kg on an XL and I love it. Can't wait to get back on it once the weather improves. Currently riding around on my Rapid with mudguards etc.

    Slightly off topic, what wheels do you ride, still on the factory fitted or upgrades>? Thanks.

    Yes - still on the factory wheels. I'm on the P-SL1 wheel system which is better than the 2014 one but haven't experienced any problems yet although I don't do mega miles - maybe 2,000 last year. I have 2 relatives that also own the Comp 1, both slightly lighter than me (not much!) and they're both ok too on the original wheels although one has recently purchased some Wheelsmith wheels with a slightly higher spoke count and he does say they roll better - I'm not sure I'm good enough to notice. Currently on R501's on the wet weather Rapid and they seem ok too.
  • Elfed
    Elfed Posts: 459
    Gimpl wrote:
    Elfed wrote:
    Gimpl wrote:
    You wont be disappointed. I'm 6'4" and 98kg on an XL and I love it. Can't wait to get back on it once the weather improves. Currently riding around on my Rapid with mudguards etc.

    Slightly off topic, what wheels do you ride, still on the factory fitted or upgrades>? Thanks.

    Yes - still on the factory wheels. I'm on the P-SL1 wheel system which is better than the 2014 one but haven't experienced any problems yet although I don't do mega miles - maybe 2,000 last year. I have 2 relatives that also own the Comp 1, both slightly lighter than me (not much!) and they're both ok too on the original wheels although one has recently purchased some Wheelsmith wheels with a slightly higher spoke count and he does say they roll better - I'm not sure I'm good enough to notice. Currently on R501's on the wet weather Rapid and they seem ok too.

    Hi, thanks for that, strange how everyone seems to say don't buy factory wheels if you're over a certain weight but plenty of positive testimonials from heavy guys to counter act the argument.

    I'm still on the original SR2 wheels, which I'll use till something happens to them. They're currently on about 2750 miles and probably weigh the same as a small child, but, I doubt my ability will ever surpass these wheels, same as a lot of people so good for training!!