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Slowtwitch Forums: Triathlon Forum:
Convert roadie to tri, should I?

 

   


lars

Nov 24, 12 17:15

Post #1 of 14 (1505 views)
Convert roadie to tri, should I? Quote | Reply

Background: Did both IMAZ events in 2008 and am now training for IMAZ 2013. Since those 2008 events I've been riding roadies, a Diamondback Podium 5 and, formerly, a specialized allez. The November IMAZ was a last minute deal, back when NAS had local entries, and I ended up riding a road bike, but posted a much better time (probably since April '08 was hot, windy, and humid). So, I know I can ride well without a tri setup, but am more interested in training for a better time, and wouldn't want to cheat myself out of the time that may come from a tri-setup


My dilemma is this. I've got a full carbon frame road bike with 105 components, not to mention, I do enjoy the ride. Finding a tri-bike at a comparable weight might cost more than I'm looking to spend. Is the extra poundage (2-3ish?) that I would probably incur, given the amount I'm looking to spend, worth the gains that come from the aerodynamics of a Trek Equinox, Slice 5, P2, or something comparable (used to ride an Equinox)? What are your comments on replacing my current handlebars with a tri-setup, would that be as effective as switching to one of the aforementioned bikes?


As it stand right now, I think sub-11 in the 25-29 age group is a very attainable goal, if that matters.


Thanks


joroshiba

Nov 24, 12 17:18

Post #2 of 14 (1501 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

It is highly unlikely that the 2-3 lbs will hurt you more then the aerodynamics of a road bike would. This does largely depend on how aero the tri bike is of course. But most courses weight isn't severely impacting your performance.

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Jordan Oroshiba --- Roadie invading Triathlete space for knowledge access


Titanflexr

Nov 24, 12 17:45

Post #3 of 14 (1473 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

If you don't already have them, spend your $$ on clipon aero bars, aero wheels (deep-V front, rear disc or cover), and an aero helmet. An aero tri frame will be faster, but it's the icing on the cake.

You can duplicate a steep tri position on most roadies by moving the saddle forward (and a zero offset seat post if need be). I ride steep (78deg) and have the same position on my current race bike (Shiv Tri) that I did on my first racing bike in the 80's (a Cannondale with a roadie geometry).


__________________________________________________
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.


RaMRod

Nov 25, 12 0:10

Post #4 of 14 (1374 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I'm in the same situation except different ironman. I went to a local bike shop with tons of questions and with a little bit of online research, I bought a carbon road bike. The LBS owner also convinced me that owning a road bike vs. a TT bike is much more cost efficient and the roadie is much more versatile in that you can switch it to and from a TT setup to a road setup with little cost involved (Although he wasn't totally against a TT setup). A set of aero bars and a helmet should do. As long as the bike fitter knows what he is doing he can pretty much replicate the angles of the aero position on your road bike with the flip of the seat post and the addition of the aero bars. There is a pretty good article online about how much time you can actually save with the different setups: road bike with non-aero helmet, road bike with aero helmet, road bike with aero bars and aero helmet, TT bike with non-aero helmet and so on... Google TT vs. Road Bike time savings in ironman, it should come up on the first page or two. I can't justify spending another $2500 on a TT bike because I don't see the time savings worth that much. On the other hand if you have the money to spend and you want to better your times and give yourself every advantage to shave time off, then I would say go the full monty and get a TT. For me, in the meantime it's converting the roadie to tri and start training my donkey off! Good luck with everything and train hard!


lars

Nov 26, 12 12:00

Post #5 of 14 (1181 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [joroshiba] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I'm looking at Trek's and have found a local 2010 TTX for 1500, and a 2010 E7 (with a set of 2009 HED 3's) for 1800. What do you think about these two bikes and the price points? Looking through ebay it seems like I should be able to offer a lower price and at least get one seller to agree. The HED 3's are intriguing, but I like carbon.


audiojan

Nov 26, 12 12:18

Post #6 of 14 (1163 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

A road bike is simply not designed to be ridden with a forward weight distribution... full aero bar set up on a road bike is like makeup on a pig... just not a good idea. You're much better off using the bike for how it's designed to be ridden, maybe add a pair of shortie (aka ITU) aero bars if you would like (they will allow you to maintain your position on the bike, while still offering some aerodynamic advantages), and swap out the wheels for a pair of deep rims...
"Suddenly the thought struck me. My floor is someone elses ceiling"-Nils Ferlin


Rambler

Nov 26, 12 13:26

Post #7 of 14 (1121 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

What you describe was a "triathlon bike" for most people for many years. As noted if the seat is too far forward, it can cause handling issues but lots of people have done very well on converted road bikes.


razorbacksteve

Nov 26, 12 13:55

Post #8 of 14 (1100 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

As long as you're in the market, I've got a 2008 QR Seduza available in large. Don't know your size, but I'd be willing to ship it for, say $950? Let me know if it's of interest to you.

Even if it's not, those prices on the Treks look high to me, too.

Good luck,

-Stephen


tigerpaws

Nov 26, 12 14:12

Post #9 of 14 (1079 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Certainly can no prob. My 40K pr is on a road geo steel frame with a Seat Shifter. Doesn't handle as great, but it's not the end of the world unless you are just an idiot on the bike you will be fine. Guys and gals even won Kona on bikes set up like this at one point too....oh the horror!

That E7 with H3's smells tempting....maybe see about a few hundred off and then it's a no brainer for my $. $1,500 for a TTX. Meh I'd go $1,000 for a TTX but no more...one just went locally on my CraigsList for $1,000 with Hed Black Dog's and a VFlow. My price point might be skewed with that, but from what I have seen the TTX has taken a beating in the after market. Price out ebay too. Just checked and 12 TTX's, very high pricing and zero bids on any of them....not one. Even a frame/fork at $400 is bidless.

Good luck and enjoy bike shopping it's a hoot!


(This post was edited by tigerpaws on Nov 26, 12 14:25)


chutney

Nov 27, 12 10:20

Post #10 of 14 (981 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

LARS,
I'm looking at a Diamondback podium 5. I can get it a good deal on a 2012 model. I am new to all this, only 1 sprint (so far) and am riding a mid 80's cannondale. Is the podium 5 a good bike? I of course am looking for a good beginner bike not worried so much about weight etc. Any reason not to buy one?

Thanks, Chutney


lars

Nov 27, 12 10:30

Post #11 of 14 (962 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [chutney] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

I love my 2011 podium 5. I can't think of any reason not to pick one up. I think you would be hard pressed to find a better bang for your buck. Full carbon frames from current or recently past seasons for under 1500. Put it this way, if I wasn't in school, and did not need the money for a tri bike, I would not be parting with mine.

If you're interested, I'm about to list mine for $1300. No problems to note.


chutney

Nov 27, 12 10:35

Post #12 of 14 (953 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [lars] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

Lars,
Thanks for the reply. Did you have to change out any components on your bike or is that price for stock?


lars

Nov 27, 12 10:48

Post #13 of 14 (934 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [chutney] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

No major upgrades.


ep5436

Nov 27, 12 12:53

Post #14 of 14 (892 views)
Re: Convert roadie to tri, should I? [joroshiba] [In reply to] Quote | Reply

joroshiba wrote:
It is highly unlikely that the 2-3 lbs will hurt you more then the aerodynamics of a road bike would. This does largely depend on how aero the tri bike is of course. But most courses weight isn't severely impacting your performance.

+1

   
 
 
 



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