Author Topic: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax  (Read 12529 times)

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Offline otomola

Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« on: February 28, 2009, 08:53:48 am »
I am considering a USA trip coast to coast. Original thought to use my carbon-fiber, Specialized Roubaix with a BOB trailer. The bike (2006 Model) is so comfortable that I would hate to have to buy a different bike to use. But, I am wondering about structural integrity. Will it be strong enough to pull a trailer? Has anyone toured with a carbon fiber bike or know of people's experiences?

I read in another post, by dlambert (September 08, 2007):

" I am REALLY glad I did not ride the Roubaix.  I am not certain the problem would have been the frame, the index shifters, the spoke pattern on the wheels, or some other aspect of the bike that makes it really fun to ride on day trips.  The problem would have been in the 2-ring cranks."

I have a triple on the bike already.

Thanks

Tom

Offline staehpj1

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2009, 09:32:00 am »
I do know some riders that happily tour on carbon fiber frames.  Which Roubaix do you have?  It looks like there are models with different gearing and spoke counts.  One of the higher spoke count models may have sturdy enough wheels, but none of them even the triple have low enough gearing for the mountains carrying a camping gear IMO.  Pack light and add a 24t chain ring and they might be OK.

If going with the Roubaix, I would pack light and use a light trailer like the Extrawheel Voyager.  It is much lighter than the BoB and uses a 700 wheel so the same spare tubes or tires work.  It also puts less of the weight on the bike's rear wheel.
http://www.extrawheel.com/przyczepkiextrawheel_en.php


Maybe use the Old Man Mountain rack on the front.
http://www.oldmanmountain.com/Pages/RackPages/FrontRacks.html
« Last Edit: February 28, 2009, 09:37:23 am by staehpj1 »

Offline otomola

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2009, 09:58:36 am »
Hi staehpj1 and thanks,

I found the specs on the bike. It is a 2005 Roubaix Comp Triple
http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?arc=2005&spid=21473

Chain rings are 52Ax42x30A. I replaced the freewheel, for doing Mount Washington, and it now has a 34T on the biggest cog, so instead of the original 30X25 it has 30X34. Able to stay seated all the way up that climb.

Wheels are Mavic Ksyrium Equipe 20 hole front, 24 hole rear.

I weigh 155 pounds - winter weight, will be about 150 pounds for trip. 

I'll check out the other trailer information.

Thanks

Tom

Offline staehpj1

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2009, 10:42:34 am »
Sounds like it could work OK.  Keep the load light if you can and don't add much weight on the bike with those wheels.  Since you are fairly light it helps.  You ought to be able to get below 30 pounds of gear if you watch your choices fairly carefully.  By all means stay below 40 for sure.

Good luck and have a great trip.

Offline whittierider

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2009, 03:10:45 pm »
If I were to worry about the touring strength of any part of modern CF (carbon fiber) road bikes, it would be the wheels, not the frame.  (You can definitely get great wheels built, but the stock ones often are not durable.)  I always do my research before buying anything more major than a box of cereal (maybe a slight exaggeration, but you get the point) and that includes my CF bike, which had to last a lot longer than my nice steel one did (and already has).  One thing I found was that there are quite a few 350-pounders on CF on the bike forums, and oodles of 240-pounders with tens of thousands of miles on their CF bikes, all without problems, in spite of crashes.  The things that make CF fail are different from what makes the metals fail, but in general, CF is a lot stronger and more durable than the metals.  Last August, our son, going 25mph on his CF Trek, T-boned a car that turned left in front of him without yielding.  He flew over the car and broke his collar bone and nose in the landing.  The force of the impact even deformed the front hub so it could not be re-used for a wheel re-build, and the dropouts were damaged; but according to Calfee's inspection and tests, there was no damage to the CF itself.  He has put a lot of miles on the same bike since then, but with several components replaced.  I would say just don't clamp to the CF itself; but clamping to the dropouts or to a metal seat post, I don't think you need to worry about anything.

Offline paddleboy17

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2009, 12:10:21 pm »
I would agree that the wheels sound like your weakest link.  Bob trailers used to use a special skewer, so I am not too worried about clamp force on a carbon fiber frame part.  That said, I think you should plan on some trial rides.

My very first tour was done with a Bob trailer.  At the time, I had two bikes: a short wheelbase racing road bike and a longer wheel base mountain bike.  I did some trial rides with booth bikes, and I found the handling with my road bike too twitchy.  I settled on the mountain bike.  I bought a light touring bike for my next tour.

Maybe someone can let you borrow a Bob trailer and let you try things out before you commit.
Danno

Offline johnsondasw

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2009, 10:27:03 pm »
I use a Roubaix for touring now with a 2 wheeled Burley Nomad trailer with the alternate hitch.  It's great because it's light and smooth.  I have yet to take any long tours with it, but intend to do so.  I agree, the wheels that came with it are the weak link--just last week I broke the flange on the rear hub where the spokes attach.  This was after about 9000 miles and 3.5 years of riding.  I replaced both front and rear tires at a cost of about $400.

I really like the combination of the CF bike with the nomad.

Happy touring!
May the wind be at your back!

Offline otomola

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2009, 01:08:10 pm »
Again, thanks to everyone for the feedback.

I think it would be wise to upgrade on the wheels. I have a set of wheels from another bike I could use. The front is a Ritchey Aero (28 spoke) and the rear is an old Mavic G40 (36 spoke.) I think they might be better to use, after having them serviced. Or simply buy a new set of wheels.

And for a trailer I like the Burly Nomad over the BOB based on what I have read. I like what appears to be increased stability. There is a dealer in town that carries the Nomad so I will check it out.

Tom


Offline DaveB

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2009, 11:53:28 am »
I replaced both front and rear tires at a cost of about $400.
I assume you replaced both wheels for that $400, not just the tires.

Offline johnsondasw

Re: Bike Question - Specialized Roubiax
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2009, 12:25:22 am »
Yup, sorry, I meant I replaced both wheels.  My mistake!  I don't spend that much on tires.
May the wind be at your back!