Thursday, October 8, 2009

get looow

I like this picture of Cadel's new ride (thanks Graham):

I like it because of the stem. Specifically, the stem angle. I like it because the stem is angled downward, which means that Mr. Evans likes to get low. Really low. The way it seems a bike racer should be riding his (or her) bike.

That's how I set up my bikes, anyway. Though I admit that this is due in part to what seems to be a manufactures' trend toward increasing the length of head tubes. My 58 cm Tarmac SL2, for instance, has what I would consider to be a ridiculously tall head tube (205 mm; compare that to the 170 mm head tube on a 56 cm frame). This requires an awkward compromise in my riding position--having to stretch out more horizontally, with a longer stem, to get my shoulders as low as they would be on my other bike, a Giant TCR, which has a shorter stem and a less aggressive stem angle. (I'd actually really like to try a size 56 Tarmac. My thinking is the front end would fit much better, but I'd be showing so much seat post that it might look a bit ridiculous.)

I say "awkward compromise," because I think I do prefer the TCR's geometry. It feels more...natural. Though my position on the Tarmac isn't exactly awkward. It feels good enough. Even after four or five hours in the saddle. (The relationship between bottom bracket and saddle position is the same on both bikes--I measure this stuff rather obsessively. The difference in position really comes down to where my hands are, which effects elbow and shoulder angle, but (hopefully) not my back.)

Anyway, I like to see Cadel dealing with a similar problem, even if on his bike if the head tube was much smaller it would nearly disappear.


In other (completely unrelated) news, I think this is interesting.


UtRider said...

My back hurts just looking at that bike. I'm impressed you can still get low.

goat said...

I can get low, but not _that_ low. Given how small Evans is, the position he's riding there really is pretty impressive.