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  1. #1
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    Difference between 2011 Flash 29er 2+3 lefty

    Two options I'm kicking around for a bike next year are the Flash 29er Carbon 2+3. It looks like one pays approx $1400 more for the upgrade to the "2". I'm not to concerned about many of the "3" component grades except for the fork.

    I see the "3" has an alloy left with PBR

    The "2" has the carbon lefty with "90 mm, OPI, Solo Air"
    Is the alloy lefty not 90mm?
    What is OPI? Solo Air?

    Worth the upgrade in anyone's opinion?

    http://www.cannondale.com/usa/usaeng...-CARBON-29ER-3

    http://www.cannondale.com/usa/usaeng...-CARBON-29ER-2

  2. #2
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    The value of the Carbon 2 is unreal. Great parts on a bike that for the price. I would say that it is worth the upgrade for the carbon lefty. I just went from an aluminum lefty to a carbon lefty and I can really feel the difference in the weight between the two while riding.

    OPI is One Piece Integration. Cannondale uses OPI on that fork for both the clamps and the lower. The non OPI lower is two pieces put together, the OPI is one forged piece. The upper is the same concept. One forged piece instead of bonding the clamps to the upper.

    The upgrade to the carbon lefty is worth it, along with that upgrade you get a better wheelset. The wheelset is the most major upgrade other than the carbon lefty. Stan's rims are the way to go. They will come with standard rimtape and tubes, but if you set them up tubeless (they are designed to be run tubeless) you cut about 200g off the bike...free upgrade.

    I think you would be happier with the 29er 2 because its a better value for what you are paying. You are getting much better wheels, a better fork, and a much lighter crank, which are the 3 most common upgrades to new bikes.

    Remember, in many instances, you get what you pay for. Cycling is most definitely included.

  3. #3
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    Amillmtb- thank you for the excellent reply

    My thoughts on the upgrade to the "2" are as follows. For reference I am a 135lb Cat 1 XC racer.

    Stan's wheels- The Arch Rims are already a bit heavy for my liking and I have a pair or Crest's available. Wheelset would get swapped from either bike.

    SLK carbon crank- Yes, this would be a nice upgrade to have

    Carbon lefty- Someone told me the difference in weight in the 2011 models is only 80gms. Not a big deal unless the dampening system is significantly different? Any comments on the internals?

    Post and Bar upgrades- will be swapped out from either bike to a zero setback. I have a couple spare carbon bars lying around.

    SLX vs XT cassette- how much weight could that save really? Not seeing this as a big deal.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by uwprunner
    Amillmtb- thank you for the excellent reply

    My thoughts on the upgrade to the "2" are as follows. For reference I am a 135lb Cat 1 XC racer.

    Stan's wheels- The Arch Rims are already a bit heavy for my liking and I have a pair or Crest's available. Wheelset would get swapped from either bike.

    SLK carbon crank- Yes, this would be a nice upgrade to have

    Carbon lefty- Someone told me the difference in weight in the 2011 models is only 80gms. Not a big deal unless the dampening system is significantly different? Any comments on the internals?

    Post and Bar upgrades- will be swapped out from either bike to a zero setback. I have a couple spare carbon bars lying around.

    SLX vs XT cassette- how much weight could that save really? Not seeing this as a big deal.
    For you being a Cat 1 Racer, it sounds like your Crests would be better than Arches.

    Lefty:
    Speed Carbon w/ XLR - 1250g
    Speed Carbon w/ PBR - 1194g
    Speed w/ XLR - 1394g
    Speed w/PBR - 1334g

    Green is what is on the 2, and red is on the 3. Being a 29er does not really change a whole lot in the internals, so weight is similar. 200g difference is close to what I thought it was.

    XT cassette will just be a little lighter than the SLX.

  5. #5
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    I also just came across this link:

    I think there may be some typos in the "specs" section though.

    http://www.cannondale.com/usa/usaeng...ok/LEFTY-29er/

  6. #6
    BDT
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    What did you decided to do? I'm also trying to decide between the 2 and 3.

    Tough choice. The upgrade on the lefty (-140g), Crankset (-175g), the OPI are nice, but are they worth the $1400? I would also keep the post and brakes, but put a 160 on the front and light rotors.

    I would probably also replace the Arches with Crests (-140g) w a AC rear (-50g) , and keep my twist shift 2x9 (XO shifters - XTR cassette - XO rear D - ??g). Sell the take-off parts on ebay. Maybe break even!?

    Since I'm replacing so much the 3 might be a better option.

  7. #7
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    Flash 3-
    I agree with your comments about the wheels. Even the arches with the “2” are pretty heavy for XC racing, especially if you’re a light guy. So a wheel upgrade is probably in order either way. I really wish more manufacturers would spec tubeless ready wheels on higher end bikes. Certainly anything with a carbon frame.
    My thinking is the X-7 shifters are probably fine. I’m not sure how big of a difference a person would notice going to X-9. The X-7’s get great reviews.
    Since you are upgrading, it does sound like the “3” probably is a better bet.

    Question- where did you find the weights of the two lefty forks?

  8. #8
    BDT
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    http://www.bikerumor.com/2010/08/19/...rockshox-bits/

    I agree on the X-7s (+20g vs X9), but I just love twist shift too much to give it up. You get a little bit of weight savings (lighter + you only use 1/2 a grip). They save me on unfamiliar courses sometimes. Come around a blind corner with a punchy climb right after in the wrong gear, you can go from your 11 to your 36 with one quick twist.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by uwprunner
    Question- where did you find the weights of the two lefty forks?
    The claimed weights are all in the Cannondale Lefty/Headshok pages...

    DAN.GEROUS.NET : MOUNTAIN BIKING : CYCLOCROSS : ROAD :

  10. #10
    BDT
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    The Bike Rumor link weights I posted must be for the "speed" version.

    So the Carbon PBR is heavier than the PBR...

    Why?

  11. #11
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    I think the weights listed on that site may include the bar-mounted lockout for the carbon? I'm not sure about this. According the the 2011 cannondale catalog, the weight difference is between alloy and carbon is ~30 grams, with the carbon being lighter. I call that pretty much even, and frankly I think the one-piece aluminum one looks WAY cooler.

    For the OP, I was torn between the 2 and the 3 as well. I had discussed with my LBS the possibility of getting the 2, but wanted to upgrade saddle, cranks, and bar. Well, Cannondale somehow screwed up and shipped one of the 3s that my LBS had ordered as a floor model with Stan's Arch wheels. LBS said they weren't charged any more for it, so it was mine if I wanted. I put on XO cranks, an EC90 bar, Gobi saddle and got the Cannondale SAVE post after-market. I get a nice team discount at this shop, but I was still shocked that I got out the door, INCLUDING Eggbeater 2 pedals, Ergon grips, Stan's tape and valves, and a seatbag, and tax, for under $2800.

    The only downgrades relative to the 2 are alloy vs. carbon lefty (and as I said I prefer the alloy), rear hub, cassette, front deraileur and shifters. I saved enough to get a sweet 2nd wheelset and still come out ahead. Pics coming soon, but it's a great looking rig!

  12. #12
    BDT
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    DrewBird - That is a screamin' deal! Enjoy it.

  13. #13
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    In contrast to the webpage, these are the actual weights of the 2011 range


    MAX-140mm
    Lefty Max Carbon w/ XLR 1354g 2.99lb

    ULTRA-120mm
    Lefty Ultra Carbon w/ PBR 1259g 2.78lb
    Lefty Ultra w/ PBR 1391g 3.07lb

    SPEED-100mm
    Lefty Speed Carbon w/ XLR 1250g 2.76lb
    Lefty Speed Carbon w/ PBR 1194g 2.64lb
    Lefty Speed w/ XLR 1394g 3.08lb
    Lefty Speed w/ PBR 1334g 2.94lb

    29'ER-90mm
    Lefty 29'er Carbon w/ XLR 1332g 2.94lb
    Lefty 29'er Carbon w/ PBR 1274g 2.81lb
    Lefty 29'er w/ PBR 1408g 3.11lb

    The website has erroneous weights of the 29er Leftys. The 29er Carbon w/PBR is actually less than the 1333g on the site. The aluminum 29er w/PBR is actually heavier than the 1379g that is listed.

    The 29er Leftys as a group are heavier by 66g because they are now utilizing the Ultra 120 Lefty structure.

    The XLR remote adds an extra 56g

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by trauma-md
    ...
    ...The XLR remote adds an extra 56g
    Yes, but with the Sram XX is possible to install the command directly on the frame without the second clamp. So, the adds could be less than 56g...

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by cstdvd70e02
    Yes, but with the Sram XX is possible to install the command directly on the frame without the second clamp. So, the adds could be less than 56g...
    Yes, using the matchmaker will subtract a maybe few grams over mounting it separately

    Interestingly, the matchmaker as a whole adds a few grams to the brake shifter combo vs. mounting them separately.

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