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Got a buyer for my current bike, which is the Fuji SL1 Pro, so I planned to make the jump to a another bike.

I have cycled for over a year now and now I wanted to try a better frame as I come to learn about the geometry, design and materials of the bike. I love to climb hills and do century rides over the weekend. On working days, I just do high cadence ride at night. My long term future plan is to build a classic frame design, much like the Colnago Master but titanium materials for my second bike.

Budget is a constraint for me, so I am only able pick among the 3 bikes below:

1. Colnago AC-R
- It follows the M10 frame geometry and design but it is not built in Italy and I am not sure if it does give a same feel as the M10. It has a nice groupset but terrible wheels. If I get this, I can look forward on upgrading the parts. Planned to swap the groupset for a Campagnolo Chorus too.

2. Pinarello Razha
- Always loved the shape of Pinarello's bike. Used to hate it but now I am very curious and would really like to try their technology on the frame. Among these 3, it comes with the worst groupset. Planning to get a Shimano Ultegra 6800 on this bike.

3. Canyon Ultimate AL 8.0
- According to their stats, this bike weights only 7.45kg for an alu frame. I also like their design, simple and it also comes with the best groupset among the 3. I won't be upgrading the Campagnolo Athena on this bike and the wheels are a-okay too. I am not sure on the re-sale value though.

So among these 3, which is the best deal and bike? Really appreciate the opinions and advice! Thanks!

19 comments

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Gkam84 [9068 posts] 1 year ago
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Not the Canyon, think of the "best deal" you need to think of servicing and parts in the future. After a couple of conversations lately about Canyon's. Bike shops are shying away or flat out refusing to do anything on them.

I've had a few servicing enquiries, I'm not very busy, but I am reluctant to take them. Lots of parts have to be bought straight from Canyon, like the bikes do, they come from Germany, but not in a speedy manner.

I guess its a bit different on a road bike, because most things are replaceable with off the shelve parts, not like on their MTB's

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themartincox [469 posts] 1 year ago
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Really, bike shops are refusing income because of where the bike was purchased? that's akin to an independent garage refusing to work on ANY car!

When the bigger firms (wiggles et al) are starting to look at servicing, why cut off your nose to spite your face?

business suicide!

To the OP, get your leg over on them if at all possible, thats undoubtedly the best way to find out.

I've really enjoyed the Canyon when I had it last year, comfy and responsive for many century rides  1

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Metjas [359 posts] 1 year ago
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I've had Canyon road bikes for years, expertly serviced by my LBS, no problems as most parts that may need replacing are indeed widely available, so I would not base your choice solely on that aspect.

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Gkam84 [9068 posts] 1 year ago
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themartincox wrote:

Really, bike shops are refusing income because of where the bike was purchased? that's akin to an independent garage refusing to work on ANY car!

Not because of where they were bought, but because of the hassle getting certain parts from Germany.

As for Wiggle going into servicing, the word going around, they will only be servicing certain brands that fit with their brands the currently stock  3

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daddyELVIS [654 posts] 1 year ago
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What parts exactly, on a Canyon road bike, do you need to import from Germany to service and maintain it?

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kenong [21 posts] 1 year ago
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Thanks for the input so far.

I've never ridden an alu bike before but looking at the technology today I do believe the Canyon bike would be a nice ride.

Bike testing will be almost impossible as I'm from Malaysia, the culture here is that lbs seldom allow customers to test ride the bike even if just outside their shop.

Anyway in comparison with the Canyon bike, I could also get the Colnago Strada-SL which would be the cheapest among all. Been reading about it as well but I felt it might become downgrade for me. Not sure if the Strada-SL can give me the Italian feel at all.

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Miles253 [198 posts] 1 year ago
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I've always thought you end up paying a premium for the brand, when looking at the 'Italian' brands. You often get sub standard equipment for the same if not more money. I would seriously consider Canyon. If worried about comfort, they do the VLCS 2.0 post which adds extra comfort at the rear

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matthewn5 [639 posts] 1 year ago
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+1 for the Canyon.

All the consumable parts (chain, sprockets, chainrings, der hanger) are readily available on Ebay/LBS/Wiggle etc.

Unless you prang it majorly you'll have no need to contact Canyon in Germany. And if you do destroy it, they'll give you 50% on a replacement! Try that with a budget Pinarello.

I have the Ultimate AL and it's the best bike I've ever had, and as comfy as my Bianchi Infinito on long rides.

And the guy at my LBS rides a Canyon, he knows a good bike when he sees one.

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mtbtomo [179 posts] 1 year ago
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Surely only the rear mech hanger on the Canyon is unique? And possibly the headset could be an odd size.

Apart from that I'm struggling along with everyone else to tell why a bike shop couldn't service a Canyon compared to any other brand?

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kenong [21 posts] 1 year ago
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If the Canyon is the better bet here, then between the Ultimate CF SL 7.0 and Ultimate AL 8.0, which one is the better bike?

CF SL 7.0
- Fully internal cable routing
- Carbon frame
- Low end groupset
- Low end Mavic wheels with 25mm tyre (?)
- Shimano mtb cassette (?)
- Been reading quite a few complaint about Canyon carbon frame having problem at the seat post when tightening the seat post

AL 8.0
- RD cable routing is external, below chain stay
- Alu frame
- 11s Campy "basic" group set
- Ksyrium Elite S wheels
- 12-27 cassette

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giobox [352 posts] 1 year ago
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themartincox wrote:

Really, bike shops are refusing income because of where the bike was purchased? that's akin to an independent garage refusing to work on ANY car!

When the bigger firms (wiggles et al) are starting to look at servicing, why cut off your nose to spite your face?

business suicide!

It's like asking to charge your ebook reader in a traditional bookshop - don't be surprised if the shop keeper isn't too impressed. At the end of the day you are asking an LBS to service a bike from a company hell bent on putting them out of business.

The independent garage comparison doesn't really work - they often don't have selling new stock as their primary means of income. Bike shops do; unlike cars, the maintenance side of the business is not a great source of income.

mtbtomo wrote:

Surely only the rear mech hanger on the Canyon is unique? And possibly the headset could be an odd size.

Apart from that I'm struggling along with everyone else to tell why a bike shop couldn't service a Canyon compared to any other brand?

More or less, however many of their road bikes use a 1 1/4" steerer tube, which can make changing stems, or fitting an aftermarket stem a bit of a pain. I think your choice is limited to a handful of Ritchey models in this size, as Canyon is more or less the only bike company using that diameter. same too for their "ilock" headsets.

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Charles_Hunter [135 posts] 1 year ago
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No lbs is going to refuse to put a new chain/cassette/cables on a canyon, and if they do, do they only service bikes that they personally sold, what about one you bought from eBay? They didn't sell that one either.

Go for the canyon, as you say it's ready out of the box you don't need to spend any more time or money getting it how you want it.

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Super Domestique [1596 posts] 1 year ago
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I was once told if you have a Pinarello itch you will have to scratch it.

The guy that said it worked for a store (at the time, he has left now) that stocked the 2 brands I was torn between, Spesh and Pina. My heart said Pina as I'd liked them since the day's of Indurain. My head said Spesh as I had an Allez so it was easy transition, similar set up, good warranty, etc. In the end the deal on the Spesh was better so I went for it.

A year later and I added a Pina to the fleet! The call got to strong and my heart won out.

Basically, what I'm trying to say is go with the one you really love. Wheels, components can be replaced, the frame is the heart of the bike. The look plays a role in rider / machine bonding process.

For me, with no offence to Canyon owners, it would be between the first two. The Canyon is like (imho) an Ikea bike. Nothing wrong it but nothing that will tug the heart strings either.

That might sound hypocritical as I bought a 'main stream' (albeit in rare colour) Spesh but then I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to buy again and a better Pina than I'd looked at before. Some might see that as an expensive mistake. I don't. I just love bikes!

Test ride and go with your heart would be my advice.

Keep us posted with what you decide.

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Nick T [913 posts] 1 year ago
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"1. Colnago AC-R
- It follows the M10 frame geometry and design but it is not built in Italy and I am not sure if it does give a same feel as the M10."

The M10 isn't built in Italy either, only the C series' and Master are.

Personally, I'd get the one that stirred some sort of emotional response. A bit of extra weight is barely noticeable, as is a groupset from the next rung up the ladder. Swinging your leg over a bike that gets you heart going and begs you to ride it, is priceless however.

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matthewn5 [639 posts] 1 year ago
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Canyon 1 1/4 stems are available from Ritchey, Giant and Syntace.

Never had difficulty finding one when I was experimenting with the right 'fit'.

That said, I agree with with those above who say 'get the bike you want'. Your heart won't be happy with a decision your head makes. And the heart has a way of getting its way, eventually.

Regarding the choice between ultimate cf sl and ultimat al slx, this review says that the AL is better:

"For an out-and-out race bike, the AL SLX is very hard to beat. Comparisons will be made between the alloy and carbon Canyons at the same price, but in all honesty we think this alloy bike is the superior ride. Both are sharp and responsive and above all exciting; the AL, however, somehow feels more evolved, balanced and dare we say it comfortable."

http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/category/bikes/road/product/review-ca...

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kenong [21 posts] 1 year ago
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Super Domestique wrote:

I was once told if you have a Pinarello itch you will have to scratch it.

The guy that said it worked for a store (at the time, he has left now) that stocked the 2 brands I was torn between, Spesh and Pina. My heart said Pina as I'd liked them since the day's of Indurain. My head said Spesh as I had an Allez so it was easy transition, similar set up, good warranty, etc. In the end the deal on the Spesh was better so I went for it.

A year later and I added a Pina to the fleet! The call got to strong and my heart won out.

Basically, what I'm trying to say is go with the one you really love. Wheels, components can be replaced, the frame is the heart of the bike. The look plays a role in rider / machine bonding process.

For me, with no offence to Canyon owners, it would be between the first two. The Canyon is like (imho) an Ikea bike. Nothing wrong it but nothing that will tug the heart strings either.

That might sound hypocritical as I bought a 'main stream' (albeit in rare colour) Spesh but then I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to buy again and a better Pina than I'd looked at before. Some might see that as an expensive mistake. I don't. I just love bikes!

Test ride and go with your heart would be my advice.

Keep us posted with what you decide.

Wow, that's exactly what I felt. The Pinarello is just too attractive for me to resist.

With my budget that I have, the only Pina's that I can look forward to are:

Pinarello Razha
Pinarello Razha K

Really love the design and geometry of the Razha but I have a gripe about the external cabling on the down tube. It goes all the way to the RD. It doesn't have that smooth look with the 2 cables running down there. Though, the finishing and colour choices for this bike is very striking.

For the Razha K, which is very new, I am not sure why Pinarello hasn't put it up on their website yet but with all internal cabling, I believe this is what they call "Think 2" tech on the bike. With the cables hidden, it looks very clean and smooth. BUT the slightly slanted top tube and the weak-looking seat stay is very disconcerting. Also, the bike doesn't come with a braze-on section for the FD. They claim this bike is for doing century rides, which is something I do on the weekends, so I am leaning a lot more on this bike but I really doesn't like the rear end of this one...

A friend said to me that I HAVE to make sacrifices somewhere, so......  102

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Super Domestique [1596 posts] 1 year ago
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I'm pleased you could see where I was coming from.

The seat stays on the K are like those on the DogmaK (which, iirc, took over from the Kobh) and are designed for a more comfy ride. It is the design used for the bikes at Paris - Roubaix for example.

Both a lovely bikes (IMHO) and for the riding you describe I'd be edging towards the K.

All the best with what you decide.

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kenong [21 posts] 1 year ago
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I'm hoping to test ride both of the Pinarello so that I can have an easier time to decide between either these 2.

Though I am having a very hard time to decide based on a few differences between these 2 model.

Razha has external cabling beneath the down tube and chain stay. I felt this lowered the bike's looks rating.

Razha K the seat stay is not as good looking as the Razha. Another thing that irks me is the FD which doesn't braze on the frame.

Not sure why but I felt Pinarello purposely make it this way for me to have a really hard time to decide!

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Super Domestique [1596 posts] 1 year ago
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Hopefully the test ride will clearly point you to one over the other.

Can you (at a later date) upgrade the Razha to DI2 therefore cables not an issue?*

*I'm not sure if that is possible but thought I'd ask.