Parlee Z5SL, Cannondale Evo 'Black' or other?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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by mgordon

Mine was 12.5lbs dead with wheels, pedals, bottle cages, and a Bar Fly - after swapping the Enve parts for Easton controls. I concur with the diagnosis of "sick."

by Weenie

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by meolsen

I built my Z5 sl recently too; here it is.

Untitled by meolsen, on Flickr

parlee z5 Sl
Enve bar
Enve 110 stem
Praxis rings
SRAM 2012 FD, RD
SRAM Red Shifters, brakes
Selle saddle
provisional seatpost
Zipp 404 FC wheels, PT rear hub
15.8 lbs -- it's the wheels, I'm sure of it.

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by Bianchi10

cant wait to see picts of your evo! post em up!!!

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by Sparks


I am looking for some information on the following frames:

2013/4: Cannodale Supersix Evo Nano & Hi-Mod & The Parlee Z5 SLi

If anyone has been lucky enough to ride all three, then a comparison would be great!

I'm particularly interested in your thoughts on BB stiffness and how the frames feel under load when climbing
or sprinting I am aware there are other factors to consider in terms of the riders weight, wheels chainset etc. but
I am still interested in opinions.

I'm planning to build one of the following for early next year but I am undecided as yet. I will be able to test the Z5 SLi but
it's unlikely that I'll be able to try the SS EVO Nano. I currently ride a non Hi-Mod SS EVO which I really enjoy and Pinarello Dogma 65.1 which I like but not enough to keep so it is now for sale (frame only or with SR EPS installed - Size 56 PM if you're interested). Somewhere between the two would be great in terms of BB stiffness and comfort but no less than the SS EVO.

2013 Pinarello Dogma 65.1
2014 Cannodale SS Evo

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by LEC135

Not ridden all 3 but for what it's worth I had a Hi-Mod SS which I thought was an amazing bike and changed to a Z5 SL (expecting it to be very similar and worried it might be more comfortable but not as exciting). It blows the Cannondale away IMO.

I know friends who have ridden the Parlee and the EVO and said it was close (but the Z5SL edged it)

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by greentimgreen

Long time reader, first time contributor here. Really interested in this thread….

Currently about to push the button on either the Cannondale SS Evo Black Inc. or Parlee Z5SLi. The pros and cons as I see them are:

Cannondale – comparatively good value. Great components, but wheels are tubular which is an issue for me (historic issues with some C35’s – both loved and hated them) and the fit is quite aggressive for the rides I do – mostly 75-100milers, flat and hilly. Super light, so would help me on next year’s Marmotte!

Parlee – I would port over my Zipp 202 clinchers, and go for DA Di2, but even without wheels this would still cost around the same as the Cannondale. Endless good reviews for this frame, and there aren’t many around, but feels like I’ll get less for more money… And where do you even start on a custom paint job??!

I’m no expert, just looking to treat myself to a nice bike that’ll last for 5 years or so…any thoughts would be very gratefully received!
2014 Parlee Z-Zero DADi2 & ENVE (6.2kg)
2015 Colnago C60 RSWH Campag Chorus & Mavic SLR (c.7kg)

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by joshscott187

I have a Z5sli and have ridden the non high mod Evo. Fit wise they feel pretty similar between a 54cm evo and a medium short Z5sli. The group and wheels were not to the same spec on the evo but found it to be a great ride and a really easy switch from my own bike. Both not brutally stiff but easily stiff enough and comfort to ride all day. Im 82kgs and don't notice any power loss from the skinny chainstays as it was one on my main concerns coming from cervelos. Both bikes climb very well with the right kit and are well mannered whilst descending. I am considering a lower spec evo or caad 10 as a wet weather ride as they seem to be a good overlap.

I would buy the one that floats your boat the most... Evo black inc is a very nice frame but i think the Parlee has it on finishing and longevity. I really like the idea that in a few years you can ship it back for a checkup and respray. Can't really do that with big manufacturers.

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by audiojan

I have Parlee Z5 (not the SLi, that's my wife's bike), but that has now become my second bike… I bought a Neil Pryde Bura SL, only because I got a fantastic deal on it, it really light and it's electronic only (and I wanted to try Campy EPS, die hard Campy fan… what can I say?!). Long story short, the Bura SL is in most regards a better bike for me than the Z5. Super stable, yet responds to every single input, accelerates like crazy (used to be a sprinter when I raced, so I still pack a bit of a punch when I want to) and I've never had a bike descend better. The Z5 is a little more comfortable for really long rides (I'll pick the Bura for 3-4 hour rides, but longer rides than that, I'd pick the Z5, which has the "magic carpet ride" float feeling, unless it's hilly, then the Bura will come out to play!).

Overall, I'm so impressed with the Bura SL that I'm looking at a Nazare (aka Alize) to add to my stable.

Oh, forgot to add… without adding any WW parts (3T Ergonova Team bars, a ARX team stem, a pig of a seat post, although I guess the EE brakes are WW approved…), my Bura is just over 13lbs and that's with a Quarq power meter. My wife's Parlee Z5 SLi is lighter (although that's an XS/Tall, built with Super Record EPS, 3T Ergonova Ltd, MCFK seat post, Gravitas brakes, etc. etc. etc.) at just under 12lbs.
"Suddenly the thought struck me; my floor is someone elses ceiling" - Nils Ferlin

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by Cuki

I bought an Supersix Evo Black Inc. in March. Similar experience to the original poster JPJ from Adelaide with lots of mountains here in Austria, and to greentimgreen where I wanted to treat myself to a really nice bike that I can ride 150-200km a day for a few good years to come. Austria is a beautiful country to ride a bicycle of any kind.
 Weight was always key, as was a decent amount of comfort.

I have to say there are days where I do not want to get off this bike or come home. That I get angry that my girlfriend finishes work at 7pm, and she expects me to pick her up from work. I get really pissed off when I look out the window in the morning and it is raining.
It is testament to the bike that I feel this way. That I can ride 150km plus a day at my age (52). It does everything very, very well, and sometimes I chuckle to myself while riding that I find myself on a decently fast descent and that I didn't even realise I had been climbing beforehand.
At 56kg and coming from a marathon background, I’m hardly gifted with huge amounts of raw power, but again I smile to myself while riding that you can sometimes feel the bike jump forward as I pedal. It was one of the best investments I have ever made.
I’m in the process also of upgrading components on the bike. The ENVE products are great but there is a real possibility that I can get this bike below 5kg at some point. Seating area has been upgraded to AX-Phoenix and 2100 seatpost. New MCFK stem and Schmolke TLO bar are on their way as we speak. Next up will be a look at the new eebrake coming out very soon. Then the little things like cabling, bar tape etc.

The biggest issue I will have is finding a set of wheels that are better than the ENVE 3.4 that came with the bike. These were the first things I was going to change on the bike, but I have to say the wheels are amazing, and for one main reason, how they ride in winds at different angles. In Vienna and in many parts of Austria there is always a wind present. It comes off the mountains. Riding a bike that weighs 5.4kg and a rider being sometimes as low as 54kg, winds and deeper rims are a real pain in the backside for me. These are the best wheels I have come across and I am very reluctant to change them.

For the record, when I did my research for a new bike, I actually came across the weightweenies site, and the other bikes that really interested me were the Parlee and RCA. No Parlee dealers in tiny Austria, though it was very high on the agenda.
 The Black Inc. might be the closest thing to riding a Parlee without it being a Parlee.

greentimgreen, quite important, do check the colour scheme of the 2015 Black Inc. as opposed the 2013 and 2014 models. It is the same spec bike as 2014, but I prefer the smaller ‘dale’ logo on the older models. If you prefer the older colour scheme, you might get a good deal very soon?

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by greentimgreen

thanks all for the very useful responses. I'm glad I broke my silence and asked the question.

I agree with you Cuki on the small gold logos on the Cannondale, and the price has already dropped from £8500 to £7000 which is tempting enough. However I'm inspired by another post on the Weight Weenies site - a chap who has painted a glossy finish (grey/pink) Z5SLi and still come in at 6.0kgs. For me, the opportunity to have something unique to me (even if it might eventually be matte black with small decals a la the Cannondale!) probably wins out.

Final decision will be made this weekend, however if I go down the Parlee route the bike won't arrive till September as i'm waiting for the 'refreshed' Z5sli with more clearance for Zipp Firecrests / 25mm tyres - August is going to feel like a long month...
2014 Parlee Z-Zero DADi2 & ENVE (6.2kg)
2015 Colnago C60 RSWH Campag Chorus & Mavic SLR (c.7kg)

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by mythical

“I always find it amazing that a material can actually sell a product when it’s really the engineering that creates and dictates how well that material will behave or perform.” — Chuck Teixeira
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by Cuki

I think you are talking about Knoxxy's bike, which is a phenomenal and truly beautiful build. As is the SK Project Black, one of the best stealth bikes on the planet and one my personal favs on the forum. Both Z5SLi's are unique, understated and extremely classy.
And it is something that is quite special about Parlee's in general, that they stand out from the crowd without being so blatantly obvious. Beautiful bikes to look at and to ride.
It is important, you have to live with it, you have to want to ride it.
What ever you choose, and both are great choices, I hope you have the same experiences as I do. That you feel special, and that you don't want to come home.

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by kahoon

not the greatest pic, but my Z5 SLi is an absolute dream machine! never tried a cannondale, but i can't imagine anyone going wrong with this!


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by ChiZ01

I could never justify owning 2 high end race bike, so which one is the rain bike ^^

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by eric

@greentimgreen you don't need to use the cdale's wheels with the bike. You can make a deal with the LBS to sell you the bike minus wheels, or if they don't give you much for them, sell them yourself.

The problem with these halo bikes with good wheels is that serious riders already have good wheels.

Is the black inc. available as a frame+fork?

by Weenie

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