New Rider Looking for Guidance

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puneet.kukreja
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 04:11 am

New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby puneet.kukreja » Wed Jan 23, 2013 04:29 am

Hi fellas,

I am new to riding and so obviously new to this forum. Did read a lot before buying my first bike almost 5 weeks ago and have not looked back. Here is what I bought:

Giant Composite 2 2013
SRAM Apex Compact Crankset 34/50
SRAM Apex PG 1050 Cassette 11/28 10-Speed
BB SRAM GXP, Press Fit

I have been doing about 100 KMs a week since I jumped on the bike. So kinda enjoying it. Now like everything new, I have been thinking about upgrades over the next few months to keep up with my riding buddies on better equipped road bikes. I know that fitness is key, but here is where I am looking for equipment advice. Considering I will not be changing this bike for a few years say about 3/4 years maybe 5 and am training for an 210 KM event in October what would the gurus recommend as changes in June. Remember JUNE.

Option 1:
Upgrade
SRAM APEX to SRAM FORCE CRANKSET 39/53
SRAM Force PG 1070 Cassette 11/25 10-Speed

Option 2:
SRAM APEX to SRAM FORCE CRANKSET 36/52
SRAM Force PG 1070 Cassette 11/26 10-Speed

Option 3:
SRAM APEX to SRAM FORCE CRANKSET 36/52
SRAM Force PG 1070 Cassette 11/25 10-Speed

OR

Option 4:
Keep existing SRAM APEX Crankset but Swap Chainrings to SRAM FORCE or RED with the above configurations
SRAM Force PG 1070 Cassette 11/25 10-Speed

Riding is mostly flat, almost no hills but do intend to do an occasional once a month or twice a month hill ride
Length: 11.0km
Average gradient: 3.9%
Elevation gain: 424m

Help will be much appreciated.

My thoughts Option 4 with 36/52 Chainrings as cash is not free flowing :D

Carbonator
Posts: 4012
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:04 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby Carbonator » Wed Jan 23, 2013 07:27 am

Hi PK,
I am not that knowledgeable on gear ratios or Sram, but just wondered why you want to change the components on such a new bike?
Seems odd to buy a compact and consider changing to a Double so soon. Is it more for ratios or Apex to Force?

How are you finding the current set up of crank/cassette ratios? Do you never use the lowest gears?
I would try some hilly rides before changing anything.
The event you mentioned must have some hills in it and I fear you (your possibly tired legs) will miss the low gears when tackling them.

Maybe money would be better spent on other upgrades.
Last edited by Carbonator on Wed Jan 23, 2013 09:15 am, edited 3 times in total.

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ugo.santalucia
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Joined: Thu Apr 17, 2008 10:39 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby ugo.santalucia » Wed Jan 23, 2013 08:25 am

There is no gain in "upgrading chainsets and cassettes", it's just marketing aimed to make you part from your cash. You already have a pretty large range of gear ratios, so stick to it and keep training. At this stage, maybe the only upgrade worth considering is getting a set of fast rolling tyres for better weather. Continental GP4000 are probably the best allround

nolight
Posts: 230
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 19:20 pm

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby nolight » Wed Jan 23, 2013 09:27 am

Option 5:

Start training already.


If you can't keep up with the buddies, it's you, not the bike. Upgrading to Duraace Di2 is not gonna help. No no. Bike is perfect, it has no fault.

Carbonator
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Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:04 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby Carbonator » Wed Jan 23, 2013 09:36 am

First thing I would upgrade is the wheels (I do have a wheel fetish though :D ) :wink:
It will make the biggest difference to the look of your bike, and the feel good factor + performance upgrade will be far better than changing the crank imo.

You could either sell you exsisting pair and swap the cassette/tyres over (it's easy to do yourself with a £5 tool, so no labour costs), or put a new (upgraded) cassette\tyres on them and keep old ones for winter\hilly rides.

Lots of offers around and its fun looking :wink:

ellj22
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 17:37 pm

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby ellj22 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 21:41 pm

Ride it till it dies then upgrade as you replace. I doubt you would notice much improvement if you upgrade at your current level and would be a waste of your cash.

Its also great to be riding faster than all your mates on a bike the fraction of the price and when you are fitter you will notice the change more. However a closer ratio cassette is nicer to ride as long as you have adequate gears to get you up the steepest stuff you will encounter.

But +1 on the wheels, a decent wheelset will make a far greater improvement to your performance than any other component.

puneet.kukreja
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 04:11 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby puneet.kukreja » Wed Jan 23, 2013 21:48 pm

Thank you everybody who has responded.

Option 5: Start Training is already underway, doing 100Kms a week and intend to take it up as the body adapts.

Regards changing components, I was thinking as mentioned in the post around the June timeframe, but just feel that the Front small ring does not help with speed output and feel like am always spinning in smaller cogs at the back to keep up. Hence the thought to change the chain rings in the front to a 52/36 combination.

Quite comfortable with the 11/28 Cassette, so just wanted to ascertain that when time comes to change the cassette should I go for an 11/26 or just keep 11/28 any performance gains and experience would be helpful.

Regards wheels, save the best one for last, I will be putting Reynolds Forty Six's in June so that is definitely on the cards. I have a wheel fetish too, it needs to look nice, nice things go faster, only kidding.

So in summary, keep training, get the wheels in June, then maybe think about changing chain rings to a 52/36.

Well the. I better get to it. Thanks everyone, anything else?

ellj22
Posts: 121
Joined: Fri Oct 26, 2012 17:37 pm

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby ellj22 » Wed Jan 23, 2013 22:14 pm

Wait until your riding 100+ hilly and windy miles in one ride. Then I would go back and asses your gearing as you will have a better idea of what the lowest gear you require is. from there you can better gauge what gearing will suit you best.

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Father Jack
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Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2005 14:43 pm

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby Father Jack » Wed Jan 23, 2013 22:17 pm

Put your wallet away and don't waste your money.
Say... That's a nice bike..
Trax T700 with Lew Racing Pro VT-1 ;-)

puneet.kukreja
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 04:11 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby puneet.kukreja » Wed Jan 23, 2013 22:27 pm

Thanks guys. Honest and unbiased opinion is much appreciated.

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ugo.santalucia
Posts: 18003
Joined: Thu Apr 17, 2008 10:39 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby ugo.santalucia » Thu Jan 24, 2013 08:19 am

puneet.kukreja wrote:Thank you everybody who has responded.

Option 5: Start Training is already underway, doing 100Kms a week and intend to take it up as the body adapts.

Regards changing components, I was thinking as mentioned in the post around the June timeframe, but just feel that the Front small ring does not help with speed output and feel like am always spinning in smaller cogs at the back to keep up. Hence the thought to change the chain rings in the front to a 52/36 combination.

Quite comfortable with the 11/28 Cassette, so just wanted to ascertain that when time comes to change the cassette should I go for an 11/26 or just keep 11/28 any performance gains and experience would be helpful.

Regards wheels, save the best one for last, I will be putting Reynolds Forty Six's in June so that is definitely on the cards. I have a wheel fetish too, it needs to look nice, nice things go faster, only kidding.

So in summary, keep training, get the wheels in June, then maybe think about changing chain rings to a 52/36.

Well the. I better get to it. Thanks everyone, anything else?


See, the problem is that you can fit all the gears you want, but it's the torque you need to keep up. You can change the gearbox to a Vauxhall Corsa and it still won't go any faster.

Carbonator
Posts: 4012
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:04 am

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby Carbonator » Thu Jan 24, 2013 09:42 am

What ride are you doing in October PK?
210k sounds a lot. Are you planning any 100 milers in your prep?
A good seat would be a worthwhile investment. Have spent overt 6 hours in mine (to cover a measly 52 miles :oops: (don't ask)) so I know it and my rearward contact point are on good terms ;-)


If anyone has got a Vauxhall Corsa that they want to go faster, I think you just spray the brake drums red :lol:

TheRealGuybrush
Posts: 123
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 20:40 pm

Re: New Rider Looking for Guidance

Postby TheRealGuybrush » Sat Jan 26, 2013 00:16 am

Hi PK,

I will echo what other members have said and advise you to stick to the Compact 34/50 chainset that you already have. If your doing long distance you'll be happier with the smaller rings. If speed really is an issue, you can change your cassette to a smaller one if you like. You will lose your biggest hill climbing gear but the taper of the cassette will be smoother.

You didn't mention if it was a Defy or a TCR that you got, but MOST bikes these days come with Compact chainsets due to the ever increasing number of speeds on the back. Even the TCR's come with compact chainsets until you get super high end.

Stick with Compact...


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