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Double the price, higher spec, only 600g difference?

annoyingtwitannoyingtwit Posts: 127
edited March 2016 in Road general
Just curious here, but I've just noticed the Verenti Technique bikes.

They are available at several different levels of specification. E.g. here's a version with the Claris groupset. http://www.wiggle.co.uk/verenti-technique-claris-2016/ for £340.

The 105 version is £637, nearly twice as much. As well as the groupset, it has better wheels, 'comfort stays' on the otherwise similarly specified frames, etc. http://www.wiggle.co.uk/verenti-techniq ... 60716204uk

I was curious to see how different the weight was between the two version. 9.2kg for the 105 festooned bike, 9.8kg for the Claris festooned bike. 600 grams difference. Is that a normal difference in weight between bikes of those prices, or is this less of a difference than would be expected? TBH, I would have expected just the groupsets to be more different in weight than that, let alone the wheels etc.

Posts

  • SMESME Posts: 389
    The 105 version has this groupset throughout - some manufacturers will go with a lower level chainset or brakes. I don't know about Shimano wheels except to say that it's a recognised brand so they should be OK (someone else will be along shortly with knowledge). So it seems a good spec bike for the price, just the frame looks bland... well, to me anyway.

    The Claris version, at this price, I would not have expected it to have carbon forks. When I was looking at sub £400 bikes those I looked at had ally forks the same as the frame, which would have made the bike slightly heavier. But then, as stated above, the brakes are Tektro (popular at this level), and the chainset doesn't stay with Shimano. I've had a bike for about a year that I use for commuting which is Claris equipped and it's done the job through all weathers with no problems.

    But yes, I would have expected the lower end model to have been a tad heavier too.
  • The bike that some people in my tri club recommend as a cheap starter with carbon forks is the B'Twin Triban 500 SE. That's even cheaper than the Verenti at £299, but is heavier at 10.6kg, though that's for a 57cm bike size, rather than 56cm. The B'Twin has a lot of 'self branded' stuff (for people outside the UK, B'Twin is a self- brand for a large sports chain store Decathlon) including brakes and wheels. http://www.decathlon.co.uk/triban-500-s ... 06187.html I'm not a bike expert, but unless there's something I'm not seeing the £340 Verenti looks to me to be even better value for money than the often lauded B'Twin. 9.2kg for the 105 Verenti versus 10.5kg for the B'Twin is more the weight difference that I would have expected given the price difference.

    While I ride older and now self-improved bikes, I was curious to read up about modern groupsets. I was surprised at how good the reviews of the Claris groupset are, e.g. http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/product- ... pset-33350 That review says that while there is a weight penalty, that they don't expect man people would notice the weight penalty of a Claris groupset versus say Tiagra or Sora. But, I expected more of a weight penalty for Claris versus 105. It is true that (as the article says) that the main compromise for Claris is that the system is 8 speed versus 11 speed for 105. And perhaps this is where some of the weight difference has been balanced - more sprockets in the cassette and possibly the rear wheel has to be more dished and therefore weight savings can't be made despite the higher level. This forum thread has some posts comparing Claris to Ultegra, and notes extra 'clunkiness' in the changes with the Claris groupset, but typically say this isn't a big deal. viewtopic.php?t=13015758

    The Sora version is only 100g heavier than the Claris version, but has the 'comfort seatstays' of the . The Tiagra version doesn't give a weight but presumably with a spec in between the Tiagra and 105 versions, the weight would be in that narrow range too.

    The Merlin PR7 was even cheaper than the B'Twin and also has carbon forks and more branded parts, including some Claris parts. https://www.merlincycles.com/merlin-per ... 73113.html However, it's 'out of stock', so this £289 price may be misleading. The weight at 10.4kg is also over 1kg heavier than the 105 equipped Verenti: more of a difference that helps justify the price difference.

    Could it be that the 9.8kg weight of the Claris Verenti is a typo? Other bikes in this price and spec range are consistently heavier.

    I should warn people that I'm not thinking of buying one of these bikes or groupsets. I was just curious about how much new bikes cost and what you get for your escalating amounts of money. The Vegence models with different groupsets allowed an interesting comparison, which had a much smaller weight difference than I expected.

    EDIT: Oh, the Verenti is a Wiggle house brand, as the B'Twin is a Decathlon house brand.http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/cate ... -15-49352/
  • onyourrightonyourright Posts: 509
    There is no practical difference in weight between Shimano groupsets except for the weight of the cranks and matched bottom bracket. Why would there be? They’re all functionally nearly identical.

    Note the ‘Claris’ bicycle you looked at does not have a Claris crank and bottom bracket but third-party items. This is typical to save costs. All bets are off on the weight of those things. They might actually be lighter but they might be heavier and they will certainly not work as well as Claris items.

    What’s more, the claimed weights of bicycles and components in this industry are largely made up or irrelevant/misleading (e.g. the weight of the lightest 54 cm model they could find in their first shipment from Taiwan, minus the weight of pedals, rounded down for good measure). This is why many of the slightly more reputable companies (e.g. Giant) no longer quote weights. They can’t compete with the liars.

    I wouldn’t use the claimed weights even as rough guides without corroborating evidence from another source. I would certainly not choose a bicycle based on Wiggle versus Decathlon claims that anyway only differ by not-enough-to-matter.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    The bike that some people in my tri club recommend as a cheap starter with carbon forks is the B'Twin Triban 500 SE.

    Your Tri club recommend that you get a triple? :shock:
    I would find a new club! (not that my experience of seeing tri club jersey wearing riders on sportives gives me much faith in any).

    Stay away from decathlon if weight is a big issue for you.
    It has junior levers I think too. Great if you have small hands and don't mind the unique way they change gear, but as your hands are not going to grow, your next bikes levers will be a wake up call.

    I would not get overly hung up about weight unless looking at greater price differences.
    Lighter the better though.

    Tribans are list price. A discounted bike which originally had a much higher list price should be better spec and probably lighter.
    People like Tribans because they are an easy purchase and it gives a lot of people 'instant expert' status.

    Don't repeat the mistake you made with track pumps, buy a decent bike first time around :wink:
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,166
    A triple might be advisable for some people. If the terrain is hilly or the person is er big boned.

    Some triathletes are eejits. As are some club riders. :-)


    I'd not really be analysing bikes so closely on weight - I think people overanalyse weight as it seems to be a great way to tell bikes apart - but as has been pointed out - they often bear no resemblance to reality. Find a bike you like the look of and ride it. Its usually the contact points that make a bike good or bad for you.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    A triple may well be advisable for some people, but this bike does not seem to be being recommended because it is a triple (or because it has small/odd levers), its been completely overlooked.

    Eejit tri club (jersey wearing) riders just stand out so much more than eejit club riders IMO.
  • Paul 8vPaul 8v Posts: 5,458
    The Btwin is a bit of a bargain despite the triple. As a starter bike recommendation I don't think it's a bad one at all.
  • Paul 8vPaul 8v Posts: 5,458
    I've got bikes with Claris and 105. The difference in shifting quality is quite noticeable but the Claris isn't bad stuff for the money. I would have expected more of a difference in weight between the two, especially considering the non series chainset but when I upgraded from 105 to Ultegra there was only a 200g difference and these bikes probably share a lot of the same finishing kit etc
  • Paul 8v wrote:
    The Btwin is a bit of a bargain despite the triple. As a starter bike recommendation I don't think it's a bad one at all.

    Agreed. I got back into road riding about 4 years ago on a B'Twin Triban 3 - which appears to be the same frameset & components as the 500SE, apart from the mechs & paintjob.

    Great bargain bike but the biggest problem was longevity of components - chainrings & cassette were made of cheese, rear rim cracked between the spoke holes just outside the warranty period & a Scottish winter wreaked havoc with everything else! I'm pretty censored about cleaning & maintenance so that was somewhat disappointing after only about 2500 miles, but I suppose only reflects the component quality of a £300 bike.

    I replaced the drivetrain with a mix of Tiagra & 10-speed 105, and wheels with RS11s, and over a subsequent 4500-odd miles have only needed to replace the chain - everything else still works like new.

    Apropos of nothing - is the OP the same Annoying Twit who posts on Basschat?
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    Paul 8v wrote:
    The Btwin is a bit of a bargain despite the triple. As a starter bike recommendation I don't think it's a bad one at all.

    Agreed. I got back into road riding about 4 years ago on a B'Twin Triban 3 - which appears to be the same frameset & components as the 500SE, apart from the mechs & paintjob.

    Great bargain bike but the biggest problem was longevity of components - chainrings & cassette were made of cheese, rear rim cracked between the spoke holes just outside the warranty period & a Scottish winter wreaked havoc with everything else! I'm pretty censored about cleaning & maintenance so that was somewhat disappointing after only about 2500 miles, but I suppose only reflects the component quality of a £300 bike.

    I replaced the drivetrain with a mix of Tiagra & 10-speed 105, and wheels with RS11s, and over a subsequent 4500-odd miles have only needed to replace the chain - everything else still works like new.

    The first two paragraphs seem to contradict each other to me?

    Personally I would have added the upgrade (was the new groupset a triple?) money to the original £300.
    Added a little more for all the time, hassle and missed out enjoyment, and bought a sale bike that did not need anything changing and probably a fair bit lighter/better than a modified T3.
  • The Triban 3s were also recommended until they lost their carbon forks in an 'update'.

    Club members will actually recommend bikes such as the Felt B12 or similar, then look all mystified that people such as myself don't want to spend thousands if they're going to be tootling around at the back anyhow. Though, more seriously, the typical advice is to do some triathlons on whatever bike you have, even a mountain bike, and only buy a proper bike when you know a bit more. I've done triathons on a single speed trekking bike and a 1970s ten speed. (note: old usage of 'ten speed') Recommendations to buy the Triban weren't given in the expectation that it would be an excellent bike, but that they are something with wheels and a seat that won't cost too much while you're learning the basics of cycling. I'll be doing my next tri on the 1970s ten (now twelve, but that's another story) speed again, I expect.

    I note that the Mekk Pinerolo SE 0.1 is available for £300 from Wiggle, has quite a few Claris groupset parts, and it has a double front chainring. I suspect that would be a good option for a beginning triathlete. I did at one time attempt to buy a second hand Triban 3. Given the experiences listed above, I'm now pleased that I didn't.

    Yes, I also post on Basschat.
  • Carbonator wrote:

    The first two paragraphs seem to contradict each other to me?

    Personally I would have added the upgrade (was the new groupset a triple?) money to the original £300.
    Added a little more for all the time, hassle and missed out enjoyment, and bought a sale bike that did not need anything changing and probably a fair bit lighter/better than a modified T3.

    I bought a cheap but well-reviewed entry-level road bike because I didn't know if I'd stick with it at the time, also cash was tight. I think the level of bike was quite suitable for me at that point - my first road bike (apart from borrowing a mate's old steel-frame Raleigh for a few months) in about 20 years.

    Like I said, I upgraded stuff through necessity as it broke/wore out, it was fairly gradual, I got decent deals on the parts & did the work myself, so what I ended up with was not too bad for the total outlay. These days it's a solid & reliable winter bike & I still enjoy riding it.

    Mix 'n' match groupset was 50/34 & 12-27. I was glad to be shot of the triple!

    @ AT - thought it was you! Jon/Bassassin on BC. :mrgreen:
  • @ AT - thought it was you! Jon/Bassassin on BC. :mrgreen:

    Hi Jon. I own a 1979 bicycle with hardware made in Japan (though, the bike itself was assembled in Londonderry) :)
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