Is 2018 the year proper race bikes with discs gain momentum?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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Enda Marron
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Location: Belfast

by Enda Marron

I watched todays stage of the Tour of the Basque Country. It finished with a narrow steep descent on a patchy wet road; all the big teams/brands were there; Specialised, Bianchi, Canyon et al .... with equally big brands/teams in the chasing group.
None chose disc brakes in conditions where the pro disc lobby would use to promote disc brakes.
I agree with calnago....the industry is trying to lead us down the $$$£££€€€ disc pathbut the fact remains that on a dangerous full on descent the pros did not chose discs, they opted for rim brakes and used them to good effect.
Trek will have riders on them Women pros will be told to use them but the Joe Dromboski You Tube says it all - I am told discs are better but I chose to use rims....
Finally why do Cannondale not have a TT bike

by Weenie


TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

Cannondale has the Super Slice. They even have the Super Slice Disc.

Again, I'm not sure why you think having the peloton on disc matters from a marketing standpoint when shops are already selling more disc road bikes than rim-brake road bikes. We know why disc isn't being adopted more quickly...wheel changes are slower. This is can be mitigated by 1) switching to tubeless and 2) performing bike swaps when feasible. Sep Vanmarcke had to swap bikes not once, but twice at Flanders and he wasn't even on disc.

The "disc is not an option" crowd is a really small subset.

pdlpsher1
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by pdlpsher1

TobinHatesYou wrote:It’s weird that people think discs are being thrust into the peloton when disc amounts to >87% of SRAM’s road brake sales. If anything, the bike brands have held back from completely forcing the issue. The consumer has by-and-large moved to disc already.
What’s driving that 87% number could be from gravel bike sales, which is the fastest growing segment at the moment. If we are talking only road bikes (as opposed to road groups) I bet it’s less than 50%.


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TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

pdlpsher1 wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:05 am

What’s driving that 87% number could be from gravel bike sales, which is the fastest growing segment at the moment. If we are talking only road bikes (as opposed to road groups) I bet it’s less than 50%.

I bet hybrid/fitness bikes are included too. Nevertheless it's 87% of complete bikes (minus MTB) sold with SRAM road brakes/groups. Except for a subset within the subset of "race bike" buyers, "road disc" has pretty much taken over. I think getting pros on disc bikes is good for optics, but for driving sales, it doesn't mean much. I don't think Calnago is going to switch to road disc just because pro adoption approaches 100% somewhere down the line. I don't think he considers switching unless he perceives the industry has completely abandoned rim-brake hardware advancement/development.

The brands have already categorized all of us and they fully understand the diminishing returns in pursuing certain types of customer.

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Lewn777
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by Lewn777

TobinHatesYou wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 12:31 am
Cannondale has the Super Slice. They even have the Super Slice Disc.

Again, I'm not sure why you think having the peloton on disc matters from a marketing standpoint when shops are already selling more disc road bikes than rim-brake road bikes. We know why disc isn't being adopted more quickly...wheel changes are slower. This is can be mitigated by 1) switching to tubeless and 2) performing bike swaps when feasible. Sep Vanmarcke had to swap bikes not once, but twice at Flanders and he wasn't even on disc.

The "disc is not an option" crowd is a really small subset.
I'm not sure why you think that this sales percentage stuff is so important. Most people have bikes already and there are loads of noobs buying whatever, MTBs, commuters and gravel bikes being sold. People on these forums are just talking about all-round/climbing descending high-end mountain road bikes - the kind of bike you ride on a sunny summer's day in the Alps, and the desired continuation of availability of rim brakes on those kind of bikes because rim brakes are lighter, simpler, work perfectly well and to many look better.

I just say this: Let the best man win. If tubeless is better, let it take over, if disk brakes are better, let them take the market. If 1x with a massive range cassette and a mega boost rear axle is better, fine. Let the cream rise to the top. Just manufacturers please don't use market spiel to convince people these marginal gains are more than they really are.

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wheelbuilder
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by wheelbuilder

Even though I disagree with almost everything Tobinhates you posts, I am am entrenched in the Norcal roadie scene, and can confirm that discs are being adopted a fast pace. Customers are asking for disc, and a lot of rim brake guys have switched over and ditched their high end rim brake bikes for disc. I don't like them, don't use them, and don't think they are necessary for road riding..........but they are very popular.

spdntrxi
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by spdntrxi

wheelbuilder wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:24 am
Even though I disagree with almost everything Tobinhates you posts, I am am entrenched in the Norcal roadie scene, and can confirm that discs are being adopted a fast pace. Customers are asking for disc, and a lot of rim brake guys have switched over and ditched their high end rim brake bikes for disc. I don't like them, don't use them, and don't think they are necessary for road riding..........but they are very popular.

and they all have beards too... you know I'm right. :mrgreen:

AW84
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by AW84

TobinHatesYou wrote:
Tue Apr 03, 2018 10:26 pm

It's most easily measured at the source, SRAM and Shimano. Shimano says disc sales overtook rim-brake sales late last year with the introduction of the new Shimano and Ultegra groups. SRAM says 87% of their OEM road group sales are disc.
Where I'm at, rim bikes still outnumber disc 50:1. I know that's only one sample, but I can't imagine that number flips to almost 9 out of every 10 road bikes in any locale. That said, I know a lot of folks are buying gravel bikes, which are widely classified as "road" and they're all disc, of course.

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wheelbuilder
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by wheelbuilder

spdntrxi wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:33 am
wheelbuilder wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:24 am
Even though I disagree with almost everything Tobinhates you posts, I am am entrenched in the Norcal roadie scene, and can confirm that discs are being adopted a fast pace. Customers are asking for disc, and a lot of rim brake guys have switched over and ditched their high end rim brake bikes for disc. I don't like them, don't use them, and don't think they are necessary for road riding..........but they are very popular.

and they all have beards too... you know I'm right. :mrgreen:
yup.

TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

spdntrxi wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 3:33 am

and they all have beards too... you know I'm right. :mrgreen:
It's sort of a sandwich. The fast old pensioners in PV, AV, SJBC, etc. are adopting disc. The middle-age bracket is hesitant. The <35 crowd is open to disc. It sort of makes sense from that standpoint because a lot of people don't start cycling as a hobby until their late 20s/early 30s, so they don't have a wall of spare rim-brake wheelsets. It's also significant that Specialized is in Morgan Hill with tendrils in Mike's Bikes (largest IBD in the US I think?) and Cognition Cyclery. They are a heavy influence on the NorCal scene, so whereas Trek outsells Specialized 2:1 in the US, Specialized probably outsells Trek 2:1 in the Bay Area.

TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

Lewn777 wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:53 am

I'm not sure why you think that this sales percentage stuff is so important. Most people have bikes already and there are loads of noobs buying whatever, MTBs, commuters and gravel bikes being sold. People on these forums are just talking about all-round/climbing descending high-end mountain road bikes - the kind of bike you ride on a sunny summer's day in the Alps, and the desired continuation of availability of rim brakes on those kind of bikes because rim brakes are lighter, simpler, work perfectly well and to many look better.

I just say this: Let the best man win. If tubeless is better, let it take over, if disk brakes are better, let them take the market. If 1x with a massive range cassette and a mega boost rear axle is better, fine. Let the cream rise to the top. Just manufacturers please don't use market spiel to convince people these marginal gains are more than they really are.
Market share is way, way more important than installed base. Anyone in business or advertising can attest to that. I think it's silly to assume certain buyers are "noobs" and others are "hardcore" for the purposes of arguing a point. It is not helpful when trying to remain as objective as possible. Neither you or I really have that kind of insight.

Here are my predictions:
- Road tubeless will not "take over," but it will be the intelligent choice for many cyclists. Even on climbs, most time losses from added weight will be made up because of fewer friction losses (air drag and rolling resistance.) As I've stated before, if I drop 300g from my system weight, I only gain 4 seconds up Old La Honda. If I subtract 2 watts in rolling resistance and half a watt in air drag, I already gain all that time back. All the while my tires are cheaper and more resilient when it comes to punctures.
- Disc brakes will take over that last segment of thoroughbred race bikes this year and dominate in 2019.
- 1x will be viable, but no it won't make significant inroads outside of gravel. Front derailleurs mostly work well. I'd consider it with 1x12 just because I want to go back to elliptical chainrings without having to deal the poor shifting combo of eTap+elliptical. Most likely though, I'll just wait for 1x14!
- Boost spacing in the rear. No strong opinions. I think it's one area where I really haven't noticed a need for improved bracing angles. I do think road BBs need to be 5mm wider already just to help resolve some extant chainline issues. If road goes to 12x148, then BBs need to grow proportionally.
Last edited by TobinHatesYou on Wed Apr 04, 2018 5:37 am, edited 2 times in total.

ome rodriguez
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by ome rodriguez

I think this thread will go on in years. Perhaps 2019, 2020, 2021?

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wheelbuilder
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by wheelbuilder

You are on a roll tonight Tobin! I am a fast, old pensioner, and I belong to PenVelo. You seem pretty clued in on the demographics of the bay area roadie scene. I will give you that.

spdntrxi
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by spdntrxi

wheelbuilder wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:06 am
You are on a roll tonight Tobin! I am a fast, old pensioner, and I belong to PenVelo. You seem pretty clued in on the demographics of the bay area roadie scene. I will give you that.
yes and I'm the hesitant middle ager with a wall of rim brakes ... :thumbup:

by Weenie


TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

wheelbuilder wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:06 am
You are on a roll tonight Tobin! I am a fast, old pensioner, and I belong to PenVelo. You seem pretty clued in on the demographics of the bay area roadie scene. I will give you that.
I also am in Pen Velo...occasionally do the 8 AM weekend rides, but honestly prefer to ride solo. Decently fast bunch considering PV members are probably oldest on average compared to the other Bay Area race teams. I’m leaving out recreational clubs like WW and FFW of course. Do you do those rides? Maybe we’ve actually chatted in person unknowingly.

Or maybe I just Googled all this information.

But yeah, if others keep the discussion civil, so do I. I just resent the insinuation that disc brake buyers are noobs and/or sheep.

E: BTW I dig the new custom PV colors Bell Z20...I already have a black and a yellow one, and may as well get one in club colors.

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