S-Works Tarmac SL 4 - My Impressions & Review.

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khdroberts
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Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:04 pm

by khdroberts

Here's my review:

http://veloveblog.posterous.com/specialized-s-works-tarmac-sl-4-full-review

I hope you all get something good from it.

Cheers.
Disclaimer:
This post may contain my opinion.
My opinion is just that - mine. My opinions are based on my experiences, not yours. Yes, I do have experience, I have thought this through and yes, that really is what I think.

darkblue08
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Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2011 12:56 pm

by darkblue08

Impressive review. You considered a lot of options. 2 bikes i didnt find was Scott and Trek. I just ended up with the Trek Madone 6.9SSL and Im very impressed with the comfort. But then again I only has my old alu bike for comparison. I was going for Scott Foil. Liked it on picture, hated it in real life.

by Weenie


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khdroberts
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Joined: Mon Dec 27, 2010 2:04 pm

by khdroberts

You're right! I probably should have covered Trek - their upper level Madones are exceptional bikes by all accounts; apparently they are incredibly comfortable. The cam seat post concept is certainly a very interesting idea in terms of increasing omfort at little apparent cost to overall stiffness. To be honest, I've never even ridden one. Which is most probably to my loss.

The Scott Foil, on the other hand, is something I did ride. I can't tell you how much (and how quickly) I hated that bike. I didn't include it because I felt that I'd already had a bit of a dig at Cervelo and didn't want to come off as overly negative.

I could write reams of reviews on the bikes I haven't liked!
Disclaimer:
This post may contain my opinion.
My opinion is just that - mine. My opinions are based on my experiences, not yours. Yes, I do have experience, I have thought this through and yes, that really is what I think.

tigoose
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Location: Mal Born, Oz.

by tigoose

Good report but what about pics...
Btw if there is some apologies as Im on my phone

mrslnd
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Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 2:14 pm

by mrslnd

I just picked up a S-Works Tarmac SL4, and am 6'6" as well. Fits me and feels good on the road.

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khdroberts
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by khdroberts

Pics to come - if the Melbourne weather ever decides to actually stop raining!
Disclaimer:
This post may contain my opinion.
My opinion is just that - mine. My opinions are based on my experiences, not yours. Yes, I do have experience, I have thought this through and yes, that really is what I think.

jsinclair
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Location: Sydney, Australia

by jsinclair

I think you should have bought the moots RSL!

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khdroberts
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by khdroberts

Well, the Moots is a very, very nice frame. It was no easy decision, let me tell you!

It really was a line-ball thing. I just felt they were two different tools for a similar outcome and at this point in my life the SL 4 was the tool I felt more comfortable with.

That's absolutely nothing against the Moots - you'll never hear anything but positives from me on that frame! In fact, while I've not had the pleasure of riding their mountain bike frames, I reckon that Moots entire road range is pretty damned special. And I'm looking forward to one day having one.

But not today.
Disclaimer:
This post may contain my opinion.
My opinion is just that - mine. My opinions are based on my experiences, not yours. Yes, I do have experience, I have thought this through and yes, that really is what I think.

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kgt
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Location: Athens, Greece

by kgt

What? I can't believe what you say about the fenomenalist: "In short, the Storck is an utter piece of crap and I couldn't wait to give it back." This is one of Tour's beloved frames mister! :smartass:

Just kidding... :)

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khdroberts
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by khdroberts

kgt:

Your Wilier Cento Uno is a bike that I've wanted for years - it's possibly one of the most beautiful bikes ever made!

And the Colnago Master X-Light would be at the top of my steel, lugged wish list.

You're one lucky person indeed!
Disclaimer:
This post may contain my opinion.
My opinion is just that - mine. My opinions are based on my experiences, not yours. Yes, I do have experience, I have thought this through and yes, that really is what I think.

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Roobay
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by Roobay

a well written and informative piece thanks for sharing :thumbup:
i like people... i just can't stand assholes

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kgt
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by kgt

khdroberts wrote:kgt: Your Wilier Cento Uno is a bike that I've wanted for years - it's possibly one of the most beautiful bikes ever made! And the Colnago Master X-Light would be at the top of my steel, lugged wish list. You're one lucky person indeed!


Thanks! I really appreciate reviews such us yours. I prefer them way more than other "scientific" and "objective" tests.

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Calnago
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by Calnago

I enjoyed reading your report as well. Is it possible to expand a bit on your Storck Fenomalist experience. I've looked at the geometry on these frames (especially the larger sizes) and end up asking "Why is the geometry so different than most other manufacturers frames of the same size?". Specifically, why a fork rake of only 38mm with a headtube angle of 73.5 degrees. Also, I agree about the short chainstays. I was just wondering if you had any better luck getting answers to some basic geometry questions than I have from either Storck or their distributors. The "answer" I've gotten is that "it's just one mans philosophy". Ok I get that, but I wanted to know a little bit about what drove him to that philosophy in the first place but have never received much enlightenment on the topic. They certainly look beefy so I was a bit surprised to read how your impression was that it was very flimsy.

Regardless, good points made and glad that your pleased with your choice.
Colnago C64 - The Naked Build; Colnago C60 - PR99; Trek Koppenberg - Where Emonda and Domane Meet;
Unlinked Builds (searchable): Colnago C59 - 5 Years Later; Trek Emonda SL Campagnolo SR; Special Colnago EPQ

poppiholla
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Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:18 pm

by poppiholla

Thanks for the review! I also ride an S-works Tarmac Sl4 in size 58. A great bike in combination with Sram Red and Fulcrum Racing speed XLR wheels or Fulcrum Racing 1 wheels (when it is raining here in the Netherlands).
Although I am not convinced about your opinion on the Storck (I also have a 7 year old Storck C1.1 which is completely flawless and great ride during the winter period) as a brand, I can say the the Tarmac is as you describe it. But I think it is very good in the corners because it feels so convident. I really love the power transfer of the bike. Every pedalstroke is speed.
When I was looking for a new bike I had to choose between the Sl4, Super Six Evo and the Cervelo R3 SL. Here in the Netherlands Cannondale cannot supply a super Six Evo frame. You have to buy the complete bike. When the Cannondale dealer has connections he can sell you a Evo frame but you will have to pay a lot more money for it. So no Cannondale for me although I like it a lot. I did not try Cervelo because I knew that I wanted the S-works as soon as I hold here in my hands. The big white S-works logo on the frame does it for me. :-) I like the Cervelo R3 SL frameset but I think that Cervelo is a bit overpriced and hyped. I also read a lot of frame problems (in the past).

By the way...Parlee and moots I very very rare in the Netherlands and not easy to buy if you want one. BMC is not my kind of bike. They look good and expensive but for me it is a hyped brand.

I really love the Italian brands although Pina is not my cup of tea. I like some Colnago's, Williers and Bianchi's but they are all overpriced, heavy and technically not top of the bill. They sure do look sexy and beautiful painted.

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kgt
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by kgt

poppiholla wrote:I really love the Italian brands although Pina is not my cup of tea. I like some Colnago's, Williers and Bianchi's but they are all overpriced, heavy and technically not top of the bill.(Not true. They are as advanced as any other top frame) They sure do look sexy and beautiful painted.

And ride great as well ! I suggest you to try some of them. You may never go back... :wink:

by Weenie


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