A Jim of All Trades

Posts Tagged ‘Slice

Cannondale Slice – My “New” Bike

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As mentioned in my previous post, I got a new bike! A member in my Tri Club got a new bike and sold me this – his old one – for a very cheap price. Though I’ve wanted to upgrade my Windsor, I wasn’t seriously shopping for a new bike, but I just couldn’t pass up this opportunity.

This is a Cannondale Slice 4. The previous owner told me he bought it in 2009 but looking around online I don’t think this color scheme was available until 2011, so maybe his memory is off by a year or two, or maybe my my online research skills aren’t the best. Either way, it doesn’t really matter much to me, the bike is a vast improvement over my old one.

(the Windsor, for reference, with my mismatched wheel set that’s now on the Slice)

The Windsor is aluminum, has a very basic shape and handle bars, more of a relaxed position, it’s a 9-speed, and just a very basic bike overall. I think I’ve done reasonably well with it and, if I’m going to be honest, it isn’t really limiting how well I’m performing, but for as seriously as I’m taking this “hobby” I’m justified in having a more capable ride.

The Cannondale is carbon, a 10-speed, quite a bit more aero, and just faster. I haven’t done a back to back comparison riding both of them, but I’ve been able to maintain higher speeds and have set quicker times over familiar routes than I was able to do with the Windsor. It also has return to center shifters, which I’m still adjusting to but like. Finally, I just like the way it looks! I don’t dislike the Windsor, it has a certain appeal to it, but I think the Slice looks cool, and in my opinion that’s important for enjoying a bike and getting the most out of it. It is old by today’s standards and quite dated, but I still like it and it’s a capable race machine for my purposes.

There are a few things about it that I’m adjusting to. It’s a bit smaller than the Windsor and I feel a little squished on it length wise. I have adjusted the front end out a bit, but if I go much more it adds too much tension to the cabling, so I’m taking time to adjust to it before making drastic changes. The crank arms are also a bit shorter (172.5mm vs. 175mm on the Windsor) and the chainrings are 150/134 vs 153/139 on the Cannondale, which has taken a little getting used to. My cadence tends to be a bit faster than I’m used to now. I’ve also found I am giving up a little speed going down hill, but on the level and going up hills the gearing and jumps between gears feel more comfortable and useful. I’m thinking about playing around with different chainrings to find what I’m most comfortable with, but will keep the bike like this for a while until I’m completely used to it. Overall I am comfortable on it and it is beginning to feel normal to me.

The first true test will be next weekend when I have my first race of the year. I want to be faster all around than I was last year but am hoping for a significant improvement on the bike leg due to the new bike and improved fitness. We will see. How it’s picture here is how I’ll race with it. I’ll use a Profile Design bottle between the arms and don’t need any other fluids for short sprint races (I do carry a bottle on the frame for training). The bag behind the saddle is small and not much of an aero penalty, I don’t think… there are better ways to carry your spares/tools, but for me this is convenient and good enough.

And, for now, I’m keeping the Windsor. I plan to use it as a trainer machine and for poor weather riding. I’m also contemplating putting road bars and shifters on it so I have a road bike instead of two tri bikes.

Well, thanks for reading! I’ll post a race report to share how the first one went.


Written by Jim

April 21, 2017 at 10:17 am