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To upgrade or not upgrade, that's the question?

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To upgrade or not upgrade, that's the question?

Old 11-17-19, 06:20 AM
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sanch3z_77
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To upgrade or not upgrade, that's the question?

I currently ride a Boardman Team Carbon which I’ve owned from new since 2010, I’ve upgraded the brakes and run Zondas which was a massive improvement however I’m wondering as my bike in nearly 10 years old am I doing myself a disservice? The rest of the guys I cycle with are all on the latest gear...

I know ultimately the biggest gains come from your engine which is why I bought a Neo and train indoors 2-3 times a week but I still do a longer 3-4hrs spin at the weekend and want to be as efficient as possible.

I’m leaning towards building my own bike as I can utilise my Zondas and saddle, etc. but as my total budget is only £1000 – am I wasting my time?

I’m ok with some used parts (bar, stem, callipers) but think the frame and bulk of the G/S must be new. I'm happy to build this over the winter as i'll mostly be out on my mtb or the turbo so have time to source parts at the right price.

The Boardman has been a cracking bike and it’s really comfortable to ride but would I honestly feel an improvement with newer tech and a more aero set-up?

I’ve read a fair bit on discs vs callipers and I’m ok with callipers. I would like Di2 but know this is highly unlikely at this price point and the money is probably best used on the frame…

I appreciate this is really broad but would welcome opinions.
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Old 11-17-19, 07:11 AM
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So what I have read is you really like your bike, you have upgrade fever, and your riding partners have nicer stuff. None of those things warrants a change of equipment in my opinion. If your bike or parts are worn out, then upgrade, but to upgrade for the sake of an upgrade with your limited budget, then just don't do it. Keep saving your money, eventually you will have enough to purchase your next bike. Then you will have two bikes, your rain/backup bike and your super aero bike.
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Old 11-17-19, 08:21 AM
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'Upgrade fever' I like that one, isn't that the fuel of most upgrades? Who really 'needs' an upgrade after all??? But are partly right though in your assumption

I've worked through my suite of cycling gear and my road bike is the last thing to look at, partly because it's least used. I have a month or so off over xmas and wondered if it would be worthwhile searching around for bits to build a new bike. My reasoning was a 10 year old bike that only cost £750 new could be improved as tech has moved on considerably. Maybe not though?

I could up the budget but I have no interest in dropping £2-£3k on a road bike. Do I really need a bigger incremental jump to notice a difference?

Appreciate your honesty, it's very easy to get caught up in all of this.
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Old 11-17-19, 08:49 AM
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In my experience---wheels are a noticeable upgrade (as you noticed.) Beyond that, not so much. Almost all the benefit is the all-important placebo gain. If you are running 105 or above (or whatever the Campy or SRAM equivalent) then nothing you change is going to do much besides lightening your wallet.

The Most important thing is a comfortable bike. If you don't like riding you won't ride. if you are strained and contorted or overstretched, you can't make a big effort or ride a long distance. If you really like your bike, you have achieved Bike Nirvana. Anything beyond replacing for wear is money wasted.

I speak as one who has wasted a ton of money and actually learned the expensive lesson. Now my bikes are just "my bikes, which I ride" not projects, and having "the latest" doesn't interest me. It never gave reward commensurate with the cost.

Eventually you will be able to afford a nice aero disc bike ... and you will find that there is a six-percent increase in speed (detectable by computer only) and a slight increase in road vibration. The vibration is constant, the speed gains come only when you are riding fast. At lower speeds (sub 18 mph or so) the gains are so marginal as to be undetectable.

However, the new bike will have all the latest stuff, and it will be new and cool and fun and worth it.but if it doesn't happen for three years or more .... that new bike will just keep getting better, while your appreciation of the Boardman will just keep growing. Win/win.
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Old 11-17-19, 08:56 AM
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Your budget wouldn't even buy much of a frame improvement, let alone a bunch of new parts. A new Chorus 12 group could be had for your budget. Of course lower level groupsets would cost less.

Look for sales on leftover bikes from a year or two ago. The wheels won't be as good as the Zondas, so swap them over.

I've got a 2017 Colnago C-RS that I got real cheap as a 105 equipped bike last year. I sold all of the parts and built it up with 2020 Chorus 12 speed and Zondas for about $3000. These days, that's cheap.

I also have a 2004 LOOK KG461 that's got all new Chorus 12 and Zondas. It's not as stiff as the Colnago, but only weighs about 150 grams more. It makes a nice winter/trainer bike.
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Old 11-17-19, 08:59 AM
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First of all, if what you say about your bike is true I would stick with it. It sounds like you have a bike that you really like. Second, from my personal experience, smaller upgrades seem to be lost or forgotten about a lot sooner that one thinks. I have put in new bottom brackets thinking that this silky smooth model is going to really be the next big thing with my riding... and after about the 2nd ride I never give it a 2nd thought.

But, if there are some consumables like a RD that isn't shifting a crisp as a new one might, then a new RD might actually be warranted. With that said, maybe just go and do a maintenance rebuild i.e. cables and housing, new chain, lube everything.
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Old 11-17-19, 09:22 AM
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I am the last one to talk about "needing" up grades, guilty as charged, but I would suggest you go for a ride on a new bike of your choosing. That way you can see if your thinking is warranted or realize your much better off than you thought. Try not to jst go on feel but try to get some data to back up your experience. For me it has turned out to be me as I am the limiting factor in my performance not the bike. Good luck and let us know what your decision is.
Frank.
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Old 11-17-19, 11:00 AM
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I'm running SRAM Rival, my average over 50miles flat(ish) is 19-20mph so maybe aero would benefit the top end but comfort over a longer period means more efficiency so that's most important. Totally on-board with the placebo effect.
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Old 11-17-19, 11:02 AM
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yeah maybe you are right. In the UK I can get a full new 105 G/S for £350 which would leave £500-£600 on a frame, maybe ex-display in the sales get an RRP £1000 frame for that price...
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Old 11-17-19, 11:04 AM
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Two best upgrades:

- Zondas
- Retul bike fit

since the fit my cycling and improved significantly.

My bike could certainly do with some TLC and that's the plan over xmas if I chose to shelve the upgrade. New cables and outers really. Chain and cassette get changed periodically anyway.
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