Q: I’ve been riding a Bianchi 1885 for a year now, very happily, but am looking to see if I can get more out of it. I know that a new wheelset is the best start, but which ones? I’m on Ventos at the moment; would I notice a big change going up to, for example, Zondas? Or should I keep saving for wheels at the scarily expensive end of the spectrum?
I was also thinking of getting a carbon seatpost. The problem here is that the 1885 seat-tube has a diameter of 31.4mm, and most posts I’ve looked at are either 27.2mm or 31.6mm. Is there any difference in ride quality using a much smaller post with a shim? I’d be very grateful for any advice you could give me.
A: If you’re anywhere between light to average weight, the Campagnolo Zonda wheels will provide a saving of 209g on your old Ventos, and the Easton Ascent lls are a very worthwhile 345g lighter. The
With regards to the seat problem, a carbon seatpost will have the benefit of firstly shaving a little weight off your bike (providing it’s a quality carbon post and not one that’s merely carbon-clad aluminium). Look at posts by brands such as USE,
In use you may well get a bit more flex in the post (depending how much is exposed above the seat collar) which will be fine, perhaps even a little more comfy. On high-spec bikes Bianchi’s Selcof carbon posts are used. You could try Selcof’s distributors www.chickencycles.co.uk to see if they have any available. I had exactly the same problem with a carbon Bianchi mountain bike about a year ago and I sourced one from USE. Their Alien Cyclops carbon seatpost was available in 31.4mm in limited numbers for £75. At just 165g the head is tricky to fit at first, but has now seen over a year’s worth of mountain bike abuse and is still like new.
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