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Trek SL5/6 vs Giant Revolt Advanced 0/1

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Trek SL5/6 vs Giant Revolt Advanced 0/1

Old 06-27-20, 03:37 PM
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Captain266
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Trek SL5/6 vs Giant Revolt Advanced 0/1

Title says it all. If you could pick between the Trek SL5 vs Giant Revolt Advanced 1 both with Shimano 105, OR the Trek SL6 vs Giant Revolt Advanced 0 both having Ultegra which would you go for? The prices are fairly similar and I am told the frames are both made at the same factory in Taiwan.
Trek has rear IsoSpeed I donít know if that is much of an advantage or not so maybe the Trek owners can chime in.
Also I have a Trek dealer in my town so possibly maintenance would be better.
Please let me know and thanks a lot.
Safe riding.
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Old 06-28-20, 07:15 AM
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Buy the shop, not the bike. Whichever shop you feel better in, I would go with them. The shop ideally would be convenient, they should treat you with respect, and give you confidence in their ability to stand behind what they sell you. Those quality differences are way more important than the differences in the bikes.

If all else is equal, then buy the one that you like the looks of better. Better to buy the one that speaks to your soul; you will want to ride it more.
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Old 06-28-20, 11:30 AM
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I was between the Checkpoint SL5, ALR5, and the Revolt Advanced 2. There are no bad choices here. The shop was a minor factor, though I did end up buy the Revolt at the local shop that sponsors my bike club, so while that wasn't the reason I bought it there, it's a nice plus.

I have a 2013 Trek Domane with Isospeed in the rear and it is wonderful. It works and definitely smooths out the road - for me the difference between the front and rear of the bike is pronounced. The Checkpoint felt very familiar - smooth and similar - though a tad slower. It is a handsome bike too. I liked it.

To me, the Revolt felt more playful. It is also very smooth. Instead of relying on a decoupler, it relies on a flexing seat post and handlebar, and it really works (the tires help a lot, of course). I've only recently noticed how good the handlebar is at smoothing the road, because it is much better at this in the drops than at the hood.

I test rode the aluminum Revolt and the Revolt Advanced 0 and bought the RA 2, because I didn't feel the need to go above 105. I've had some issues, mostly probably due to a sloppy built at the shop. The most notable is that the seat post slipped all the time to the point that the bike was unridable. Eventually a swap for a new post solved that issue. The other thing I'd say is that the wheels are HEAVY AF and really takes work to get them spinning. The RA 0 has carbon wheels for $1100 more - that is a good move. I'm replacing my stock wheels as soon as I can for lighter alloy ones and putting wide tires on the stock for days that are more single-track than gravel.

These are two excellent bikes. I bought the Giant in part because it is my #2 "road" bike. If it was buying a Swiss Army knife bike, it would be the Checkpoint. I think it would be better on the road with faster tires.
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Old 06-28-20, 05:11 PM
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jcg878 Thank you so much for your information. I kind of want a Swiss Army Knife of bikes like you said towards the end. I have a cheaper Jamis Moutain Bike it is a Trail X 650 that I have been riding on county roads and then some gravel and dirt trail and then back home on county roads. I want something with the feel and speed of a road bike but the versatility of a moutain bike/gravel bike.

So, if I am correct you are suggesting I get the Checkpoint over the Revolt?

Thanks
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Old 06-28-20, 08:09 PM
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I'm not really making a suggestion for you, just relaying my impressions of the two bikes. But reading what you are saying now, then my feeling is that the Checkpoint will fit that need a little better. I thought it was more like a road bike than can go off road than the Revolt is. When I ride the Revolt on the roads, I always feel very upright compared to my Domane, in part because the drops are flared and more shallow. But this judgment is coming from my 'road-first' perspective. Either bike will feel like a rocket to you compared to your MTB - they are both excellent.

Have you ridden both? You may find that one just 'clicks'.
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Old 06-28-20, 08:29 PM
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I havenít ridden either bike and all Iíve ever ridden is my Jamis MTB. I just started riding it in March a tiny bit. Then in May I started a little more. Then June 1st I just got bit by the bug and now Iím riding 10 miles of road 4-5 of gravel in the woods and 10 miles home. I sit in more of a road bike position and really feel like I need the drop bars.
Iím watching a lot of YouTube videos and learning a lot. This is why I thought Iíd ask the pros.
I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee and itís a beautiful place to ride. Iíll post pics when I get enough posts.
I want to get an advanced bike that Iíll have for years.
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Old 06-29-20, 08:00 AM
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If you can ride both, that's always good, as mentioned, sometimes a bike just feels right. I have no experience with the Checkpoint, but I'm very happy with my Revolt. It rides great on the road as well. I've done A+ group rides on it with no issues.

I'm a fan of Giant's warranty also, two years full crash replacement, which is nice when you know you're going to take it offroad and beat it up.
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Old 06-29-20, 08:05 AM
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No experience with the Giant, but I love IsoSpeed. As I age, I find comfort climbing the priority list.

I considered the Checkpoint as well. It's a great bike. I suggest riding both and getting what you prefer, because you'll be in the saddle. For me, I'm partial to Trek because my LBS sells them and I get great service there.

EDIT: The reason I did not go with the Checkpoint was I do more road riding (> 98%). If I did more gravel, I would own one.

Last edited by TobFromme; 06-29-20 at 08:10 AM.
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Old 06-29-20, 08:14 AM
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Roger Ramjet
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I own a 2019 Checkpoint SL5. I haven't ridden the Giant, but I can give a positive recommendation for the SL5. Ride and handling are excellent. I would note that I have the Schwalbe G-One 35mm tires, as opposed to the 40mm Bontrager GR1 tires the 2021 model now has. Plus, you will have the 30/46 crank instead of 34/50.
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Old 06-30-20, 09:35 PM
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jcg878
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Originally Posted by Captain266 View Post
I havenít ridden either bike and all Iíve ever ridden is my Jamis MTB. I just started riding it in March a tiny bit. Then in May I started a little more. Then June 1st I just got bit by the bug and now Iím riding 10 miles of road 4-5 of gravel in the woods and 10 miles home. I sit in more of a road bike position and really feel like I need the drop bars.
Iím watching a lot of YouTube videos and learning a lot. This is why I thought Iíd ask the pros.
I live in Chattanooga, Tennessee and itís a beautiful place to ride. Iíll post pics when I get enough posts.
I want to get an advanced bike that Iíll have for years.
I think you'll find enough of a difference in the feel of the bikes that you'll have a preference. You'll know what feels right.

You may want to go down a level from what you're looking to spend and see if a 105 level bike fits your needs as well. JMO, but I think it may be a bit of overkill for a first 'road-ish' bike. You might be better off saving some of the money that would go into the components and maybe consider a 2nd wheel set with road tires... or just get ready to go down the rabbit hole and purchase a road bike later

On the other hand, inventory at bike shops may push you one way or the other re: level of bike since there are shortages of stock.
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Old 06-30-20, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by TobFromme View Post
No experience with the Giant, but I love IsoSpeed. As I age, I find comfort climbing the priority list.

I considered the Checkpoint as well. It's a great bike. I suggest riding both and getting what you prefer, because you'll be in the saddle. For me, I'm partial to Trek because my LBS sells them and I get great service there.

EDIT: The reason I did not go with the Checkpoint was I do more road riding (> 98%). If I did more gravel, I would own one.
Having a first-gen Isospeed Trek Domane and a Giant Revolt, I have to say that I'm really impressed by how much flex the Revolt has. It has taught me that a lot of comfort can be created without something as engineered as Isospeed (though I love it also).

Last edited by jcg878; 07-01-20 at 06:05 AM.
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Old 06-30-20, 11:35 PM
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When I test rode the giant Revolt advanced I was able to hit some rumble strips on the side of the road.

It was so impressive, I turned around and hit them again like 10 different times. dropped seat stays? D-fuse seat post? Carbon bikes have came a seriously long way in building in compliance and comfort!
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Old 07-01-20, 05:48 AM
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Originally Posted by jcg878 View Post
Having a first-gen Isospeed Trek Domane and a Giant Revolt, I have to say that I'm really impressed by how much flex the Revolt has. It has taught me that a lot of comfort can be engineered without something as engineered as Isospeed (though I love it also).
That's great to hear. At first, I was very skeptical of IsoSpeed, but it works and works well enough that I feel comfortable for way longer than I used to.
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Old 07-02-20, 03:55 AM
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I want to thank everyone who has contributed to this thread. I've been really busy lately and haven't had the chance to reply to everyone. I'm 39 and just signed up for my last college class yesterday. After this class I will have successfully converted my AAS degree into a BAS all online. I've been riding my bike, going yo the gym znd studying along with working.

I like the Trek being more aero positioned and more like a cross between a road bike and mountain bike. I also like the idea of the IsoSpeed.

There is a Trek dealer here in town so I feel like I would have good support if there were any issues. I have brought my mountain bike to them and they even replaced the rear cassette for free when I brought it back the next day after they worked on it and told them it was a little sticky in shifting. The mechanic rode it around and then saw a tooth was chipped. He said we should have caught that. They replaced it on the spot. Then he rode it around some more and so did I.

So now the question? SL5 Shimano 105 or SL6 Shimano Ultegra?
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Old 07-02-20, 05:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Captain266 View Post
So now the question? SL5 Shimano 105 or SL6 Shimano Ultegra?
I personally wouldn't spend the extra money for Ultegra, unless there is some other content on the SL6 you want (color? ). I have 105 on several bikes, it shifts and brakes fabulously.

Congratulations on your degree.
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Old 07-02-20, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Roger Ramjet View Post
I personally wouldn't spend the extra money for Ultegra, unless there is some other content on the SL6 you want (color? ). I have 105 on several bikes, it shifts and brakes fabulously.

Congratulations on your degree.
Good luck with your final class! That's impressive that you're finishing a degree in your late 30s. I'm a professor and I'm always impressed with student who work academia into their already-full lives.

I also probably would not do this at the point where you're at. I don't think you'll notice a difference in the bikes except for the price tag, and if you're using it as a Swiss Army knife then I think you'd be better off using the money for a 2nd wheel set. Also, you should know that for 2021, Trek switched to the GRX group sets for the Checkpoint. I don't know much about the practical differences between them are except that one level approximates Ultegra, one 105, and one Tiagra. You may be limited by bike availability also, though I wonder if Trek's business model will help out here.
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Old 07-02-20, 12:14 PM
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I can comment on GRX. I have a 2021 ALR5, in addition to a 2019 ALR5. The GRX 600/810 on the 2021 ALR5 and SL5 is functionally equivalent to the 105 on the 2019, other than the chainring ratios changing from 34/50 to 30/46. Shifting and braking performance are the same, in my experience.
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Old 07-11-20, 03:37 PM
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FWIW, I thought I'd come back on here and say that I put carbon rims on my Revolt Advanced and holy crap, what a difference. This is only after one ride, but the bike is transformed - much quicker, more responsive, and fun. While riding, I ran into a friend who I ride with all the time who was on his Emonda and we rode together, and I was able to easily keep up (though pulling was still tougher than my road bike). That would have been a struggle with the stock rims.

I still think that of the two the Checkpoint is the better do-it-all road/gravel machine, but the Revolt is definitely improved in that category with better wheels like the Revolt Advanced 0 has. I was looking at inexpensive lighter aluminum rims for ~$400-500, but my shop called and one of their employees is selling his for $600 with tires (WTB Riddler 37s) so I didn't think I could pass it up. Now to really test out my marriage and get some for my road bike!
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Old 07-11-20, 03:55 PM
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The idea of 'buy the shop not the bike' is crazy to me. Buy the bike you like then take it to the shop you like.
Best of both worlds.

My wife's Synapse road bike is from my least favorite bike shop in our metro, but we bought it because it fit her best for the price and spec we would pay. I dont think I've been in the shop since.
to be fair, I work on our bikes, but if i didn't I would just take it to one of the two shops i do like and they would happily work on it since I'm paying them.

Limiting myself to only a few brands due to those being what a shop carries is an odd approach to me. Bike brands and models vary so much in geometey and spec...shouldn't fit come first?


OP- if you like the trek and its in the local shop, then all the better.
I have modern ultegra on a road bike and modern 105 on another road bike- I cant tell the difference. Both shift and brake perfectly.
My gravel bike is a mix of 105 and ultegra.
I would buy whichever model offered the widest range in gearing. Trek has been slow to recognize that a compact road crankset on a gravel bike isn't ideal for 85% of cyclists, but they finally changed for the 2021 model Checkpoints, i believe.
if both have the same gear range, go for color. Then go for lowest price(105).
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Old 07-12-20, 05:17 AM
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I just purchased the SL6 and will be taking delivery this week. I would have been happy with the SL5 but none to be had until November in my area. I believe the only differences in the two is groupset, wheelset, color and saddle. You won't be disappointed with either IMHO.
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Old 07-13-20, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by flacplnj View Post
I just purchased the SL6 and will be taking delivery this week. I would have been happy with the SL5 but none to be had until November in my area. I believe the only differences in the two is groupset, wheelset, color and saddle. You won't be disappointed with either IMHO.
Congrats! You have a great bike coming.
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