Help deciding... 2014 Tarmac Sport vs. Allez Expert

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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natefontaine
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:37 am

by natefontaine

Selling my CAAD9 and I am looking at these two bikes, but can't decide. What are your thoughts?

I'll be switching my SRM over from my other bike and I have zipp303 which are 10sp.

Tarmac Sport $2100 (Black w/yellow accents)
My first carbon bike, less money, match team kit, internal cables look cool, 10spd so I can keep my current wheels


Allez Expert $2400 (Black w/red accents)
Aluminum has been great, 11spd Ultegra, external cables are easy to work with, I'll have to sell my 303's and build a new set with 11sp.

Right now I am torn, I enjoy the aluminum but maybe the carbon would be more fun. To me I see little difference in the two bikes. Mostly being the change from 10sp to 11sp and the lower grouppo going with the Tarmac.

by Weenie


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53x12
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by 53x12

Are you set on getting a built bike? What about buying an Allez E5 OSBB for $880 plus 2013 SRAM Red 10 speed for $1300-1400. That way you get to keep your 10 speed Zipp wheels, still get a quality groupset and stay within your budget. It would stink to lose money on selling your perfectly good wheels to buy a new set or paying to get them converted to 11 speed if your year can be.

Another option if you are open to a use frame is a SL3? I routinely see framesets going for $700-900 range. So if you really want carbon you could go that route and still build it within your budget. If you are going to race the bike, aluminum might be the best bet.
"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

natefontaine
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:37 am

by natefontaine

This will be a race bike, the CAAD9 got me up to cat1 and I like aluminum. I thought about the allez E5 and grouppo but still would need bars and a saddle so add a couple hundred. Im leaning towards a complete bike... it will be ready qucker, I could also sell the crank off the complete bike and get a few $ back.

2tonGorilla
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by 2tonGorilla

natefontaine wrote:This will be a race bike, the CAAD9 got me up to cat1 and I like aluminum. I thought about the allez E5 and grouppo but still would need bars and a saddle so add a couple hundred. Im leaning towards a complete bike... it will be ready qucker, I could also sell the crank off the complete bike and get a few $ back.


A buddy of mine Rode the Smartweld Allez and said it rode better than his Non-S works Tarmac. Personally, I would go with the Allez myself. ALU in crash's you tend to worry less about a "fatal" crack and everything is going 11spd might as well get a jump on it now. I'd sell my 303's while people are still on 10spd for the majority. Get the best bang for your buck while the market has some demand. Or you can use this as an excuse to get a frameset in a sweet color like the black/multi-keyline :thumbup:

laxer29
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Joined: Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:20 pm

by laxer29

Couldnt you sell the 303 and get a fairly good wheelset with what you receive + a few bucks?

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53x12
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by 53x12

natefontaine wrote:This will be a race bike, the CAAD9 got me up to cat1 and I like aluminum. I thought about the allez E5 and grouppo but still would need bars and a saddle so add a couple hundred. Im leaning towards a complete bike... it will be ready qucker, I could also sell the crank off the complete bike and get a few $ back.


If you are going to spend $2400 on an Allez Expert you might as well buy the Allez E5 frameset for $880 then buy Shimano 6800 groupset for $800 and have plenty of money for the rest of the build. There shouldn't be too much of a time difference once you decide what build you want. Just ride your current bike until that point. Why pay Specialized the price difference just to get their crappy in house branded stuff on the bike for a price premium. Are the stock Fulcrum wheels, cockpit and FSA crank worth the extra $800 you would be paying for a complete build? I would hazard to say no. Don't forget you would pay tax on all of the $2400 vs paying tax only on the $880 as you can get the 6800 groupset tax free from several sources. Go the frameset route. Then you can pick exactly what saddle, stem, handlebars you want. Even seatpost if you don't want the stock seatpost.

I only recommended the '13 10 speed Red as I thought you would enjoy saving weight and having a better group for a similar price as the Expert is stock.
"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

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53x12
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by 53x12

laxer29 wrote:Couldnt you sell the 303 and get a fairly good wheelset with what you receive + a few bucks?


Depends what you mean by fairly good and what year/condition the OP's 303s are in. I have seen nice looking FC303 go for $1000-1000. I bought my brand new FC303 for $1300 when I did so earlier this year. Could you get a nice set of 11 speed wheelie for ~$1000? Sure. But not on the same level as FC303s. Even less so if they are the older 303s. Boyd/Flo wheels are nice for the money. But not the same as Zipps or a pair of Enve wheels.
"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

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53x12
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by 53x12

2tonGorilla wrote:everything is going 11spd might as well get a jump on it now.


Move to 11 speed is over rated imo. I would personally rock a solid set of 10 speed wheels that are still great wheels, buy a new 10 speed grouppo as places are trying to clear inventory and ride my new bike with a huge smile on my face. 11 speed isn't going to make a difference. Nothing but marketing and getting fools to upgrade their perfectly good bikes and wheels to the latest and greatest.
"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

Ahillock
Posts: 466
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:30 am

by Ahillock

Surprised no one else has asked you yet, but if you did so well on the CAAD9 and liked it, why not consider a CAAD10 that is even more of an improvement on a great racing machine?

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Maximilian
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by Maximilian

Or just keep the CAAD9 and swap out a bunch of parts and sell off what you don't want.
--Max.

yz387
Posts: 49
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 1:24 pm

by yz387

Don't forget about frame/wheel compatibility. I currently have a set of 303FC and a Tarmac. The two simply don't work together. Not sure what vintage 303s the OP has, but definitely something to consider.

natefontaine
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:37 am

by natefontaine

Thanks for the help, ended up getting the frameset and 6800 grouppo. I'm sure some will not like the fact that I'm bolting on my Hollowgram SRM, oh well, works for me. Also went with all the Pro Vibe 7s odds n' ends to get a nice matching bike. I sold the Zipps, they were from 2011 and were the hybrid toroidal, now waiting on the CAAD to sell. Then I can build up a set of race/training wheels. Turns out the Mavic Elites from 2011 are 11sp ready, so that is good. Hoping it will be under 7.5kg with a good wheelset. I helped a friend build up a 61cm Allez E5 and frame weighed 1350gm, fork was 450gm so almost the same weight as my old CAAD9 just larger, so I'm hopeful.

darwinx
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:25 pm

by darwinx

I've been hearing people say more gears are for fools ever since Dura-Ace went from 6 to 7 speeds. They were wrong then and you are wrong now. More gears mean more ranges to choose from and less jumps between ranges. So it's hardly imperative but it's not for fools either. That's just an ignorant thing to say.


53x12 wrote:
2tonGorilla wrote:everything is going 11spd might as well get a jump on it now.


Move to 11 speed is over rated imo. I would personally rock a solid set of 10 speed wheels that are still great wheels, buy a new 10 speed grouppo as places are trying to clear inventory and ride my new bike with a huge smile on my face. 11 speed isn't going to make a difference. Nothing but marketing and getting fools to upgrade their perfectly good bikes and wheels to the latest and greatest.



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53x12
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by 53x12

"I've been hearing people say more gears are for fools ever since Dura-Ace went from 6 to 7 speeds. They were wrong then and you are wrong now. More gears mean more ranges to choose from and less jumps between ranges. So it's hardly imperative but it's not for fools either. That's just an ignorant thing to say."

It isn't ignorant, it is my opinion which the last I checked was still ok for me to have and one that other cyclists also have. I have test ridden 11 speed and didn't notice gaining anything. Maybe jumping from 6 to 9 speed would be a difference rather than going from 10 to 11 speed. But how many of us even use all 20 or 22 gears on our bikes? I use ~6-8 gears of the 10 I have on my current bike. Going from 10 speed to 11 speed, that is just marketing and road bikers out of any group is more than willing to throw away perfectly good 10 speed groupsets and pay for that extra gear. Along with the tighter tolerances and thinner chains. Plus the issue of 11 speed complicating wheel dishing and potentially getting a structurally weaker rear wheel.

You would see a bigger jump in performance and enjoyment going with electronic groupset than jumping from 10 speed to 11 speed. Has been my opinion and will continue to be so. It is a 'forced' upgrade. Enhancing 10 speed wasn't going to make Shimano/SRAM/Campy any more money. Campy's move to 11 speed was unique and got them sales. S&S followed along.

I can see 11 speed use for MTB where you could run a 1x11 and get great use from that. But for road, really? We need to start petitioning S/S/C for 12 speeds. They are holding out on us. At least Tiso is giving us 12 gears. Good for them.

* What I really want is a internally geared hydraulic transmission. ;)
"Marginal gains are the only gains when all that's left to gain is in the margins."

natefontaine
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 3:37 am

by natefontaine

I went with the 11sp because I rode the piss out of the 7800 grouppo. I wouldn't say I threw it away, but gave it a new home with someone else who doesn't need precise shifting every time. I agree with 53x12 that if you have a grouppo that works why bother upgrading, unless that is what you want. For me I welcome the extra sproket. I love the straight block cassette, but the 21T can get a bit testy on 6-8% sustained grades. With the 11sp I can get an extra climbing gear, actually I could go for a 13sp. 11-12-13-14-15-16-17-18-19-21-23-25-27. One cassette to rule them all. Guess i'll have to wait for the tandem 145mm rear end to migrate over to our road bikes.

/thread

by Weenie


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