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At the exhibition at the Excel in London the other week I saw some very slender young bikes. I went round lifting them up to test the weight. I found one was 5.2kg, this produced a chortle and a certain amount of envy and avarice to get a next generation bike for myself. However I foolishly did not make a note of the manufacturer. After going from a mountain bike to a Carrera, um 'metal' bike, to a Jamis Carbon 8.5kg, even lighter and more aero has to be better right?

Are we always talking in the £3k+ region for 5-6kg weights? I was thinking a graph of weight to RRP cost would identify best buys and look cool, but perhaps the internet has got there first before I do this. Can anyone suggest what this ultralight beauty might have been or similar weight bikes? And anyone comment on the stability of v. light bikes?

61 comments

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bendertherobot [1429 posts] 3 years ago
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The components on my Canyon add up to over 3k. Frame, FFWD carbon wheels, full SRAM Red.

It's 6.5kg or thereabouts.

Sub 6kg? I could probably shave 400g off with some hyper wheels. Another few hundred on bars etc. So, for about another £1k yes, I could get in the region of 6.

5.2kg? That's going to cost.

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robdaykin (not verified) [368 posts] 3 years ago
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Not by any chance this one was it?

http://www.robertscycles.com/robertsultralight.html

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dave atkinson [6301 posts] 3 years ago
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Leviathan [2599 posts] 3 years ago
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Neither of those. They look like specialist one offs. This was commercially available, along with a whole bunch of 6.5kg bikes.

I wonder could a lightweight bike be effected by a strong cross wind?

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russyparkin [570 posts] 3 years ago
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6.5 is easily obtainable, i even have done it with a caad10 and campag centaur mainly oh and super fancy wheels

below that though

oh 6kg doable for a lot of money on a 700 something frame

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ashfanman [128 posts] 3 years ago
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The Cannondale Supersix Evo Black Inc is 5.2kg.

It's also £7,500, mind.

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bashthebox [752 posts] 3 years ago
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A crosswind is unlikely to affect you - if I remember from the ride London/climbing thread you're about 90kg? A coupla kilos won't make much difference on your bike, not unless you're rocking deep deep rims.

A thought about cost - some of the better chinese imports seem to be around 1000g for frame and fork - that's knocking on the door of the lightest branded pro frames, I think, and all for about 400 quid. Team them with some ultralight chinese carbon wheels and you'll be on your way to something featherweight.... though, if you believe a lot of the talk, you'd be insane to ride it if you weigh more than 70kg.

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Simon E [3040 posts] 3 years ago
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Deep rims are more of an issue than bike weight in crosswinds. And anyway the bike's weight is dwarfed by the large wobbly thing balanced on top of the saddle.

But I'm getting a sense of Deja Vu, so the above is probably the 'wrong' answer.

Tejvan's Trek is now 5.7 kg but achieving it didn't come cheap. Here is Jack Pullar's 5.5 kg Cannondale he used for the 2012 National HC.

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Leviathan [2599 posts] 3 years ago
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Seems like all these are custom builds. I would be happy to build up a bike, perhaps except for the BB. Makes me wonder what it would cost to pick up parts individually and create ones own ultralight spec. Seems like no one here knows an off the shelf bike under 6.5kg for under £3k, back to mooning over the Canyon website.

@SimonE, You should know that there are no right and wrong answers, except when someone else tells you that you are wrong on a subjective matter; thats wrong.

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ashfanman [128 posts] 3 years ago
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bikeboy76 wrote:

Seems like all these are custom builds.

The Cannondale I listed isn't. It's 5.2kg stock. It's just very, very expensive. But you're not going to get a sub 6kg bike on the cheap.

EDIT: Oh, and Canyon's lightest bike is the Ultimate CF SLX 9.0 Team. That's 6.3kg and currently reduced to £4,900. The Ultimate CF SLX 7.0 is 6.85kg for around £2,500. Upgrade the wheels and you could get that pretty light for less than £3,000 all-in.

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bashthebox [752 posts] 3 years ago
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You could probably get down to 88kg for less than £3000  3

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Leviathan [2599 posts] 3 years ago
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bashthebox wrote:

You could probably get down to 88kg for less than £3000  3

Yes a personal trainer would whip me into shape, it works for those actors. However money spent on my bike PERMANENTLY reduces the weight.

I really like the Canyon CL SLX, but all the 7.0/8.0/9.0, EL/Pro etc are confusing. I get that there are better spec/lighter components on the more expensive bikes, but the difference is only about 400g for an extra 3 grand on the top of the range. And shouldn't a (quite) expensive bike already have decent wheels, better than I can buy for £500? Maybe some deep rims.  39

I think sawing off the drops is the easiest weight to drop, it looks good on that mountain goat, and I never use them, they seem so far away.

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Raleigh [1667 posts] 3 years ago
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stefv [216 posts] 3 years ago
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This book costs £8.79 and I went from £82kg --> £73kg. (It didn't cost me anything because I got it off my brother in law.)
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Paleo-Diet-Athletes-L-Cordain/dp/1594860890

I have to admit though, I would love to have a badboy like one of these someday and I'd probably have to come up with a pretty good excuse to get one too!  3

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bashthebox [752 posts] 3 years ago
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Hmm. I'm thinking, because of what you told us about your riding style, that an ultralight bike isn't for you. You're strong on the flat, right, and like to push a big old gear? Surely you want to go aero-framed and deep rims?

Put it this way. The only time you'll get any advantage of, say, a 6kg bike, is when you're accelerating, or going up a steep hill. On your current setup, your total weight is near as makes no difference 100kg. A saving of 2kg is a 2% difference in weight. And if you're mashing a gear that's too big anyway, that 2% won't be noticeable.

An aero bike though, you're making little % gains all over, and if you're mostly on the flat then you're getting a lot more out of your money.

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Simon E [3040 posts] 3 years ago
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bikeboy76 wrote:

Yes a personal trainer would whip me into shape, it works for those actors. However money spent on my bike PERMANENTLY reduces the weight.

You don't need a personal trainer, you only have to make decisions about your lifestyle. You know only too well that if you do regular exercise and eat sensibly then the weight comes off and stays off.

But if you think you can spend your way to lightness then you'll never be satisfied. 'Having' will never match 'doing'.

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bashthebox [752 posts] 3 years ago
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Also, at risk of sounding like a broken record - have a look at your riding style and be open to adapting it.
Turning a smaller gear at a higher cadence not only is more efficient, but it also causes your body to metabolise your fat far better. i.e. you're burning some fat instead of just glycogen.

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ilovemytinbred [161 posts] 3 years ago
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Buying shiny bikes is always a good idea though if you can afford it, a nice bike can be a lot of fun to ride.
Be under no illusion though, it will make no difference to your times/speed outside of proper race conditions, and even then for most of us actual performance gains are secondary to the equipment looking nice (and fitting, good handling etc.)

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Bedfordshire Clanger [345 posts] 3 years ago
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bikeboy76 wrote:

I really like the Canyon CL SLX, but all the 7.0/8.0/9.0, EL/Pro etc are confusing. I get that there are better spec/lighter components on the more expensive bikes, but the difference is only about 400g for an extra 3 grand on the top of the range. And shouldn't a (quite) expensive bike already have decent wheels?.

It's called the law of diminishing returns. You are right, 400g is what you get for £3k. Is it really worth it? You won't be able to buy new kit at a better price than Canyon can get it for. If you check the list price for all of the components for a new Canyon, you will find that they pretty much throw in the frame or free. You might be able to pick up something direct from China or second hand that fits the bill but you are still spending a lot of money for little in return in terms of weight saving.

There are many cheap alternatives to shelling out for that weight saving, you could take out one bidon rather than two, cull your spares or just take a big dump before you go out. I am pretty sure that the majority of people recommending personal weight loss are doing so because they have done it themselves and have kept it off by cycling. I know that I have despite being an inveterate desk bound boozer. You can do it too, ride through winter, commute by bike, get up early and enjoy the late summer dawn on two wheels while you still can. Set yourself a target, I dare you to ride 500 miles a month for the next year. No excuses, buy that SLX when you are 85kg and tell me how good it feels then.

Good luck

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Leviathan [2599 posts] 3 years ago
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BEDS, I was thinking of attempting a 'million month' before the end of the summer, ie. a thousand kilometers. I already keep a 30 day rolling total which peaked at 748km after London. 800km a month, that is definitely a sustained challenge in the winter when it gets dark. It is hard enough to find time right now. BASH; I would love some deep rims, I need £500 for some Planet X 60mm.
Funny how you always get a regular supply of positivity from certain characters here, meanwhile there is SIMON; you always like to read between the lines then spew forth your cod philosophies. Believe me it will take a long time for me to get the money for the next level of bike I want, so I am taking my time and asking all the questions I can. If you somehow think this is frivolous talk about fantastical bikes then you have missed the point yet again.

Simon E wrote:

You don't need a personal trainer, you only have to make decisions about your lifestyle. You know only too well that if you do regular exercise and eat sensibly then the weight comes off and stays off.

But if you think you can spend your way to lightness then you'll never be satisfied. 'Having' will never match 'doing'.

Did you really sit there typing that out and not think for one moment that it was a bit condescending? You may think your replies are very astute but in reality they are just always off topic.

As for the Paleo diet; that is a level of existence I we are NOT prepared to tolerate, to paraphrase The Architect.

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ilovemytinbred [161 posts] 3 years ago
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In fairness he just responded to a comment that implied saving weight on the bike is a better long term solution than losing a few pounds. Unless you are already very thin then that is crazy talk.

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Simon E [3040 posts] 3 years ago
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Still not listening then?

Ah well. Can't say I didn't try...

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700c [1127 posts] 3 years ago
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Bike Boy, think I'm like you - above average size, stronger on the flat, not so good on hills.

I also have a history of breaking bikes! Would love a superlight bike but daren't!

Also, a featherweight bike is no good if it's really flexible.

To that end, I've focused the equipment spend - and weight loss - where it matters most - wheels, and have gone for a slightly heavier, Ti frame for hopefully longevity and a bit of reassurance.

The aero wheels also play to my strengths by making the most of speed I can hold on the flat.

So, is 'lighter is better', answer is, it depends, IMO!

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Leviathan [2599 posts] 3 years ago
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@SimonE What exactly am I supposed to be listening to, you sanctimonious twerp? No one said buying lighter equipment was better than loosing weight, only easier. It would help if your posts actually had some factual content instead of aspiration drivel apropos of nothing.

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notfastenough [3722 posts] 3 years ago
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@Bikeboy76, I think it might have been in this month's issue of 'Cyclist' magazine that I read about frame repairs the other day. One of the things mentioned was a carbon fibre engineer who repairs frames, stated that the minimum weight for a properly viable frame was 850g (I think - you should probably check). That's probably assuming a 65kg whippet or some such in the saddle. I think for 100kg, an ultralight frame might not be viable anyway.

That said, check this out:
http://road.cc/content/review/85070-canyon-ultimate-cf-slx-90-sl
£3.7k, 6kg, 120kg weight limit. Purely race-focused in handling though, probably a bit twitchy unless you plan to race.

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ilovemytinbred [161 posts] 3 years ago
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It is amazing though dont you reckon, things do seem to be getting stronger for a given weight? There are a lot of trail mtbs that are really light these days and they have to deal with a lot of impact stuff too. Even cx frames are crazy light. 850g is amazing, and think some of the pro riders using these frames are not exactly super light and they can put out more power with one leg than most of us can do with two  1 I would imagine the main danger is crashing, if a thin bit of the frame takes a direct hit I bet you would end up with a broken frame although I have crashed my top end bike at a decent speed and I was suprised to see that I came off a lot worse than the frame.

I would only doubt a light frame if it was a show piece not in mass production, or a brand who did not have a proven track record.- assuming the manufacturer did not give a low rider weight limit,

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abudhabiChris [691 posts] 3 years ago
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You may have asked a specific question in your OP but it tends to be fairly common that people answer questions in their own way. If you don't like that, avoid the internet.

To save time, unless you lose weight and train better then the answer to every question about equipment now and in the future is this...

You could buy a bike made by NASA, held together by spider webs, with Lightweight tyres filled with helium gas and components made of meringue, and you would still suck.

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ilovemytinbred [161 posts] 3 years ago
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abudhabiChris wrote:

You could buy a bike made by NASA, held together by spider webs, with Lightweight tyres filled with helium gas and components made of meringue, and you would still suck.

Ok Im sold, where can I get this bike?

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mooleur [537 posts] 3 years ago
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Wyndymilla do a superlight frame for a pretty reasonable (for a custom/bespoke) price I think..

http://www.wyndymilla.com/latest-bikes/massive-attack-sl-superlight/

Although a couple folks have speculated to me about the truth of it being actually *that* light

Looks pretty sexy tbh. I would.

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700c [1127 posts] 3 years ago
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@AbudhabiChris, so you slag off the OP, but because you have prefaced your response with 'people answer questions in their own way if you don't like it avoid the internet', you think it's acceptable to do so?

Err no. It's called trolling

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