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Cube Aerium HPC Ultegra 2010 or Focus Izalco Chrono Shimano

Hey everyone. Have been researching Tri Bikes for a while now and am finding it difficult to get reviews on my shortlist. Would greatly appreciate some feedback or impressions on the following bikes.

Cube Aerium HPC Ultegra 2010 or Focus Izalco Chrono Shimano. Help!!!!

Need to make the choice as the availability of 2010 models is very scare.

Many thanks in Advance



  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Spec of Cube

    Frame: HPC Monocoque Aerodynamic Twin Mould Technology
    • Fork: Easton EC90 Aero CNT
    • Headset: FSA Orbit I Carbon
    • Stem: Syntace F109 Oversized
    • Handlebars: Syntace Stratos CX Carbon Oversized
    • Bar Extension: Syntace C3 Clip
    • Bar Tape: Cube Grip Control
    • Rear Derailleur: Shimano Ultegra RD 6700SS
    • Front Derailleur: Shimano Ultegra FD-6700F 2-speed, Braze
    • STI: RL970 TT Carbonlever, Shimano Dura Ace SL-BS79 Endshifter, 10-speed
    • Brakes: Shimano Ultegra BR-6700
    • Chainset: FSA SL-K Light Megaexo Carbon 53x39, Integrated BB
    • Cassette: Shimano Ultegra CS-6700 12-25, 10-speed
    • Chain: Shimano Ultegra CN-6700
    • Wheelset: CUBE HP Aero
    • Tyres: Schwalbe Ultremo R Kevlar 23x622
    • Tubes: Schwalbe RR light SV20
    • Rim Tape: Schwalbe 16-622
    • Pedals: None
    • Saddle: Fi'zi:k Arione Tri
    • Seatpost: Aero Carbonlight Drop
    • Seatclamp: Aero Carbonlight Drop
    • Weight: 7,80 kg
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Spec of Focus

    Izalco Chrono Shimano (Ultegra)2010
    Colour Carbon
    Frame Focus TT and Triathlon Carbon fibre
    Fork Focus carbon
    Rear Derailleur Shimano Ultegra
    Shifters/Triggers Shimano Dura-Ace
    Gearing Front 53/39, rear 11-25
    Chainset Shimano Ultegra
    Brakes Focus TT/SL by Prime
    Brake Levers Focus TT/SL by Prime
    Bars 3T Aerobar, Carbon
    Stem 3T Alloy, A-head
    Front Hub Focus clincher carbon
    Rear Hub Focus clincher carbon
    Rims Focus clincher carbon
    Wheelset Focus clincher carbon
    Tyres Continental Grand Prix Triathlon
    Saddle Fizik Arione TR12
    Seat Post Aero TT
  • Have you test ridden either?
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Yes I can see the dilemma.

    All I can say is that people speak very highly of Cube and having had a Focus myself I loved it, build quality, spec and performance were spot on.

    The wheels on the Focus look interesting, if they are half way decent then that might be a clincher if you excuse the pun as most bike reviews tend to contain the phrase ‘and add a decent set of wheels …’ looks like a 38F 50R or possibly 60R setup. If they are decent then that will save the £400 – 500 bill for a comparable set of wheels and if you do an upgrade will be quite easy to sell I would have thought or would make more than adequate training wheels.

  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    You have a keen eyes the rim depths are 35F and approx 50R with the bike coming in at 7.6kg. I have had a go on the Dura Ace version of the Cube but only up and down the car park. The components on the cube seem to be better but get the feeling the Focus frame has the advantage. I can get the Cube for around £2000 and the Focus for £2250 so its a tough one as your say. The Syntace C3 bars on the cube are really comfy, any experience of the 3T ones?? Also have you heard any feedback on the Focus brakes by prime. I don't think you would throw either of them out of bed .. lol.

    Thanks for the help so far.

    Im 186cm tall with a 88cm standover and weight approx 15 stone.
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Well I must say that I have an FSA chainset on two bikes - Gossamer - and like them very much.

    I have the MegaExo BB on one and on the other had a Dura Ace 7900 BB. I think the DA is the better BB but then again it is on a better lighter frame so not directly comparable. Some concerns have been raised about the Mega Exo BB but the counter is that the earlier ones were not properly installed or maintained. I have had no probs with it and a mate has the FSA SLK chainset with the Mega Exo BB on his Felt, is damn quick and has no complaints. Again my understanding is that you cannot swap out the BB on the SLK and need to use the Mega Exo but not 100% n that.

    IMHO with this kind of bike it is screaming for a half decent set of wheels; the Cube's don't seem to fit the bill hence my thoughts about the wheels. What are your intentions there? If you are definitely going for a different set then that is something to be ocnsidered.

    I would suggest you get some more info on the Focus wheelset, the spec says carbon clincher, aly brake strip? Is that a carbon fairing or a carbon rim with aly strip bonded on? If they weigh in at about 1500gm excluding skewers then I would equate them to something like Fuerte Bici's at about £450 Pro lItes are about £650 @ 1850gms (incl skewers I think) Shimano DAs are a grand at 1650gms incl skewers
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    I forgot to add, if at all possible get a test ride on both - difficult I know when there is a bragain to be had.

    Re sizing, these should keep you busy, but they are guides and deepnds on your torso, femur lenghts etc.



    http://www.trifuel.com/training/bike/de ... cycle-size

    Not followed this one through but you can select a tri bit calculator:
    http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za/CC ... ATOR_INTRO

    Hope that helps
  • Where can you get the cube from for £2000 ?
  • AtomicAtomic Posts: 126

    Can't comment on the Focus, but I've got a Cube Agree GTC race roadie and love it. In fact the bike is much faster than I am!!!!!!!

    And all Cube carbon frames come with a 5 years warranty.
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10

    They will do the cube bike for 2349 Euro including delivery if you email them.
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Its my first Tri bike, only really took up cycling seriously at the start of this year and then progressed onto Triathlons. Have done a few sprints and am aiming to do a half ironman next year. Currently riding a Giant Rapid 1. Next question is do I buy one of the two tri bikes or a good road bike??

    I know the wheels are important. Trouble is my budget is around 2K, so am I best going for the Focus then. Can only get the 2010 Cube from Germany now. Focus frame has 3 years warranty, Cube has 5!!

    Questions, questions.
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    I can only go off my experience, same event bike splits as follows:

    2006 1:04 MTB
    2007 0:54 Road bike
    2008 0:49 Focus alu tri bike
    2009 0:49 Focus alu tri bike
    2010 0:46 Cervelo PC carbon

    Reason I went for the Cervelo was not the speed factor, altough it is a tad quicker, but because I entered for the Outlaw and wanted the bump soaking comfort of the carbon frame.

    So to get to this point I went through 3 bikes, 4 if you include the MTB. If I was just sticking to Sprints then I could in no way justify the Cervelo frame but for going long it was worth it.

    Getting another road bike; have a particular shine to the PX with SRAM Red for £1099 http://www.planet-x-bikes.co.uk/i/q/CBP ... n-sram-red
    Groupset worth £800 on its own.and if you get under Cycle to Work scheme will cost you net £700 and you can even set one up if your employer doesn't have a scheme.

    But IMHO you already have a perfectly adequate road bike so why have 2? If you get another road bike you will have to adapt it as indeed many do and I am not knocking that after all the machine is the important thing. You are however aiming for HIM and if you are in it for the long haul then I would say get the carbon tri bike.

    Pros: You get a decent bike at a decent price, it is well specced, it will be more comfortable and hopefully faster over distance than an alu bike, the geometry is set up for triathlon, you will set off fresher and quicker on the run. You have a road bike already which will stand you in good stead for training so can reserve your A bike for racing prolonging the life of the bike and its components and will last you for some years.

    Cons: Not best suited for all round training, you spend £2k in a bike and ride it for a handful of races a year and training sessions, err think that's it.

    So if you decide to take the plunge which one?

    Frames- I just cannot offer an opinion on them - sorry. I know Cubists rate them highly as do Focusites, I loved my Focus. I would venture that for most of us either frame would be more than adequate and have no reason to suspect that either frame will not be anything other than well made and designed due to their pedigree – unless someone knows otherwise.
    Components - Both are well specced. The only thing that really stands out for me is the Focus wheelset. I really would like to know more about those, if they are rubbish then you will need to get decent wheels. The Cube’s are there just to wheel it out of the door, 26mm section? You are going to have to spend £350 up to get a decent set of wheels (30mm hand built aly from £350), the OE set are simply not an act of war.
    The Focus 36F 50R setup allows you to get some aero benefit but will still remain useable in strong crosswind. If they are half way decent that will save you a few bob or you could even sell them and get some carbon tubs – thoroughly recommend the PX R50s at £550 but then we are stretching the budget – sorry, it is triathlon. Again if they are rubbish you will have to shell out £350 to get anthing decent.

    Of the two I would go for the Focus purely because you will have to replace the wheels on the Cube and shell out £350 plus. The Focus wheelset I think will allow you to get some decent racing in and not break the bank. If you then upgrade in the future you will have a decent set of training wheels. But again I would say get more info on the Focus wheelset as I believe that may swing the balance either way.
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Right, making a decision before the wife beats me for looking at bikes every given hour of the day and you guys can get your lives back to lol.

    Well I managed 40.59 for the bike leg on my first sprint on my Giant Rapid 1, so Im looking forward to seeing what a carbon tri bike can do. The quickest time of the day was in the 33's and I thought I was moving.

    Well I have quizzed wiggle and have to say they have an excellent response time to queries. The wheels are an all carbon rim with carbon specific pads to suit. They don't have any details on weights however. So all in all its seems a great buy.

    They have a demo one which I have in writing is unmarked apart from some minor evidence of use on the tyres. They are doing this for £150 less at £2100. I bought my Giant through cyclescheme so this one is going on the card. So I am presently getting the card out and going to buy before I miss out.

    Thanks for all the assistance and the necessary reassurance. Will let you know how I get on.


  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Well I would say the Focus sounds the best. The whels are probably something like a generic Gigantex rim with Focus stickers on. but the pic seems to show an aly braking strip.

    If the brake strip is aly then you may want to look at some Kool Stop pads, if it is a carbon brake strip then Swiss Stop yellow.

    Whatever bike you will have a decent ride.

    Good luck
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Some more info on the focus wheels from wiggle

    The wheels are lightweight, very similar to Zipp 303 clincher wheels and approx. the same weight. The wheels have tyres and cassette fitted so I can't give you exact weights but approx 800g for the front and 950g for the rear (without tyres, tubes and cassette). The front is a radial spoke and the rear is a 2 cross spoke pattern

    My bike was shipped today. Hopefully have it Monday or Tuesday. Cant wait to get out on it, start racing some cars !!
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    Well all things being equal on the frame and componentry IMHO the wheelset on the Focus have swung it, they sound decent enough and will save you a few bob. The 36/50 set up provides an aero benefit but will be perfectly manageable in stiff crosswinds.

    The pic seems to show an aly brake strip but if it is all carbon would suggest you swap the pads for Swiss Stop yellows
    If aly strip then Kool Stops have a good reputation

    Sound like you have a good bargain there - good luck.
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    Its arrived, was beginning to wonder if there was anything in the box it was that light. Bike is absolutely stunning. Trying to get a torque wrench to get the handlebars on so I don' overtighten them with them being carbon. The rims are full carbon with carbon pads, no aly strip. One thing I did notice is that the rims are both the same depth, approx. 38mm. I emailed wiggle and they said if I sent the rear wheel back to them they would get Focus to replace it or they would give me a voucher for £50. Whats the thoughts. Will a 15mm deeper rim on the back make much of a difference?? £50 will go a long way to a new pair of shoes. Bit pissed at having to send the wheel back and not being able to use the bike. Would want the replacement first or give me one of another bike.

    Advice very much welcomed.

    Thanks Keith
  • kjm8kjm8 Posts: 10
    [attachment=0:w3is6046]DSC03196.jpg[/attachment:w3is6046]The machine itself
  • ZacniciZacnici Posts: 1,385
    My understanding is that the front wheel meets clean air so a deep section cleaves through it and minimises any turbulance for the rider and rest of the bike. The deeper the section the better the benefit, 38 to 50 - stiff crosswinds pose little if any problems; above 50 then you may have a bit of a battle if it is really breezy. A 38 front gives aero beenfit but minimal prob with crosswind.

    The rear wheel area is full of dirty air and a deeper section helps reduce the vortices and therby reduces low pressure drag and is less affected by crosswind so 50, 60 80 and 100 usually sported and then of course disc.

    Pros for keeping the 38: You get £50 to spend on shoes etc, you will still get some aero benefit, the 38 should be lighter and better for climbing.
    Cons: 38 may flex more than the 50, more aero from the 50.

    Either way you will have a decent set wheels but if it were me I would want the 50 rear. I think the weight saving would be minimal, it should be stiffer and be more aero beneficial - OK perhaps not a lot but worth having.

    I would make absolutely sure that unless you remove the cassette that the replacement has the same cassette.
    All carbon rim - swap out the brake pads for Swiss Stop yellows.
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