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Tri Bike

What do people feel about tri bikes? Do they make a huge difference. Right now I have a Giant Road Bike scr 3.0. I am thinking of investing in Jan in a tri bike. What do people think?


  • rpopper65rpopper65 Posts: 171
    They look really cool and when you ride one around people are more likely to know you do triathlons (or lots of time trialling).

    If you like being in an aero position for the duration of your rides and find it comfortable, if you get used to switching your position when you need to brake or shift (depending on what type of bars, shifters and brakes you have), and if you don't do any serious drafting or group riding, then it can be great. I bought a tri-bike last winter and I like it very much. A true triathlon-specific frame will also have less of a steep angle on the seat tube, which theoretically puts less strain on your legs when you are all tucked down and aerodynamic, which theoretically is better for you on the run section when you come off the bike. I haven't seen the dramatic improvements in times yet to say if it was worh it, overall.

    You could try an intermediate step and put some aero bars on your Giant and see how you like it.
  • ardkeenardkeen Posts: 152
    Thanks rpopper,

    I have the aerobars which I find good. I don't know if I can justify having a tri bike as I probably dont train enough, however I am contemplating an Ironman next year, depending on my time in the half ironman, in Kenmare, Co. Kerry in september.Is there a specific bike you could suggest?

  • rpopper65rpopper65 Posts: 171
    I have a Felt S32 (bought on eBay in the US at a very good price - I brought it back on the airplane with me on a family trip as checked luggage) which has an aluminum frame (some aerodynamic features, although maybe not the full tri-specific seat tube angle and all that, and not the aerodynamic cut-out for the rear wheel that you see on some of the higher-end frames like Cervelo) with some decent components (mixture of Shimano 105 and Ultegra), not a bad mid-level tri-bike. So far, it's the only tri-specific bike I've ridden for any period (had it since February), and it has proven to be very comfortable for the long rides on the weekends. Didn't take too long to get used to the new position.

    If you know a bit about bikes, know how to measure yourself for the correct size frame, have a good local cycling shop that can help you assemble and fit, and you want to buy something new or you have abit more money to spend, then www.planet-x-bikes.com seems like just about the best buy in the UK for really nice equipment at a very good price.

    But, it depends on your budget. Once you hit the triathlon-specific category of bicycles, it seems that you can spend as much as you want, up to and including about what you might pay for a new car (although a pretty small one perhaps).

    I'm a big fan of buying on eBay, but there should definitely be a huge "Buyer Beware" sign at the top of every page. I thought I had bought a really nice racing bike for $360 (I go to America to visit family a lot and thought it would be nice to have a bike to keep over there for my holiday visits) and it turned out to be a bit of a lemon. I think it was worth more than I paid - back in 1998.

    Anyway, you win some, you lose some. I have bought other bikes for friends and family on eBay that have all turned out to be good to very good bargains.
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