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Zack58

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Reply with quote  #1 
I am shopping for a new ride, but not finding much in my size (58cm+) and price range.  My local shop is working with me on a potential upgrade to some entry level bikes I am considering, and any advice from you guys would be hugely helpful. 

The shop carries the Kona line, but only the Rove and Rove DL are available in my size.  All the Roves have the same alum butted frame.

I am summarizing for brevity, but they'll upgrade either of these models as follows.

Full upgrade: Everything to Shimano 105 for $800 (includes parts, labor, tax). This would put the base Rove at $1650 and the Rove DL at $1900.  At this point the only salient difference between the two is that the Rove DL features TRP brakes vs Hayes on the Rove. Is that brake upgrade worth $250?

They'll also do an upgrade of the "essential" components which is everything except crankset and bottom bracket.  For this, the shop would charge $580 all-in.  So the question there is, is it worth $200+ to upgrade a Sora level crankset and a CH52 bottom bracket to 105 level?

Last question...none of these options have a carbon fork.  How important is that considering that some say the alloy frames can be kind of harsh?

Thanks all!  
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GOTA

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Reply with quote  #2 
It sounds about list price since moving from mechanical disc to hydraulic brakes is ecpensive.  I'm assuming this is the brand new 105 7000 series and not the current 5800 series? The current 5800 doesn't have hydraulic brakes or shifters.  They have non-series brakes and shifters that they substitute which aren't very popular.  With that said I have been riding them on my new bike for months now and they've been okay.  I personally wouldn't pay that much for the 5800 series but the 7000 series is brand new and is going to be expensive.

My advice would be to try the Sora for a year and then upgrade later if it doesn't do what you want it to.  It's not like Sora is bad.  It's just heavier and 9 speed instead of 11.  The shifting is fine for a non-race bike.  You'll be able to upgrade later for the same money in the future if you feel you need it.  It's not like this is some great price that you won't be able to get in the future.

I ordered the Kona Rove NRB DL last year and picked it up in February.  Kona does a very nice job with their aluminum frames.  This model comes with wide road+ 650b wheels.  The ride is just as smooth as my carbon endurance bike.plus the carbon fork.  It's been very noticeable on the climbs.

Kona's website is pretty good about letting you know what's available.  They have a buy now link and will ship to the store.  Make sure you explore all your options and don't feel you have to get the Rove or the Rove DL because that's what the store has in their inventory
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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #3 
Zack58 I have been riding gravel for over a year now. I have one bike that has the Spyre disk mechanical brakes and another bike that has I guess the Spyre hydraulic brakes. I not great on the downhill riding yet but can flat out tell you that there is a big difference in mechanical brakes and hydro brakes. I wouldn't buy another gravel bike that doesn't have hydro brakes as I just love them that much.

One thing to consider when buying a bike is overall weight. It costs a lot more to try and drop some weight than to have a bike that is lighter at the starting point. That is if you consider racing in the future or you want a bike that will climb better.

Good luck in whatever you buy
Zman

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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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Zack58

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Reply with quote  #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zurichman
Zack58 I have been riding gravel for over a year now. I have one bike that has the Spyre disk mechanical brakes and another bike that has I guess the Spyre hydraulic brakes. I not great on the downhill riding yet but can flat out tell you that there is a big difference in mechanical brakes and hydro brakes. I wouldn't buy another gravel bike that doesn't have hydro brakes as I just love them that much.

One thing to consider when buying a bike is overall weight. It costs a lot more to try and drop some weight than to have a bike that is lighter at the starting point. That is if you consider racing in the future or you want a bike that will climb better.

Good luck in whatever you buy
Zman


Thanks ZMan!  (BTW, I am known to occasionally go by that moniker as well.)

I finally pulled the trigger on a 2018 GT Grade Alloy.  Aluminum frame, 105 group set, hydro brakes... At under $1400, it was 600-800 less than the other bikes I was considering.  Plus, everything I've read from owners online suggest that the bike is well-loved.   I'll try to post some pics/reviews when I can. 
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NoCoGreg

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Reply with quote  #5 
Zack - just an FYI on carbon forks.  I replaced the steel fork on my Dean CX bike with a carbon Ritchey fork and yes thee was a big difference in the ride.  The Dean steel fork was definitely stiffer but also more harsh transmitting rough road vibration.  Replacing a fork is a relatively straight forward upgrade and one often can find last year's model on clearance.  

Congrats on the new bike,
Greg


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