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  1. #1
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    Cannondale Synaspe

    LBS has a leftover Cannondale Carbon Synaspe 5.
    I am currently commuting on my Rush 1.
    15 miles each way, 10 miles Rails to Trails (6 miles hard packed crushed gravel).

    Anyone commute on a bike similar to this?
    Being carbon, I will not be able to mount racks or anything. Anyone have a recomendation on bicyling backpacks.

  2. #2
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    Isn't the Synapse a full on road bike?

    I commute about 14 miles. I tried it on a Rush 4 with street tires. 1/2 street, 1/2 rail-trail. It was fine. Just a little slower than on my Specialized Roubaix. But what got me was the mtn bike bar position for extended pedaling. My hands/fingers started to go numb. The drop bars with newer style hoods really are very comfortable for extended pedaling in the saddle.

    I currently commute on a Lemond Poprad. A bit more comfy than my Roubaix for road bumps. Great stopping power with BB7 disc brakes. And lots of clearance to run full fenders.

    I just give up pounding up hills but rather slowly climb them. Also, I have greater wind drag with the full fenders so I ease off on the top end.

    I get to work about 5 min or so slower. So 55 minutes instead of 49. I can live with that.

    I didn't like subjecting my nice CF bike to all the road grit in the wet. Plus, I could only run clip on fenders. And then trying to stop after descending 600' with wet, gritted up, rim brakes is pretty scary.
    Just get out and ride!

  3. #3
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    6 miles of crushed gravel on 23 or 25mm tires is doable, but it's incredibly irritating. Probably still a little better than doing the whole commute on a full-suspension bike, but I think I'd choose a more touring-oriented bike that let me run a little more tire. With the speed limit on the rest of the rails-to-trails, it won't be a big deal to carry a little extra tire the rest of the time. IMO, it's better to have a little bit too much tire for the five road miles than an annoyingly small tire for the six gravel miles.

    Can you link to which Synapse, exactly, you're thinking about? Cannondale's 2010 archive doesn't list them by number - only by component group, and while 2011's Synapses are numbered, that doesn't sound like it's what you're considering. Looks like for '11, it's a somewhat different bike.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by WVU RUSH
    LBS has a leftover Cannondale Carbon Synaspe 5.
    I am currently commuting on my Rush 1.
    15 miles each way, 10 miles Rails to Trails (6 miles hard packed crushed gravel).

    Anyone commute on a bike similar to this?
    Being carbon, I will not be able to mount racks or anything. Anyone have a recomendation on bicyling backpacks.
    I have a Six Carbon Five and the crushed rail trail in Morgantown is not bad on it, and the synapse is said to be a more relaxed bike. Here is the thought that crossed my mind as I debated going out and doing a short ride tonight. I started thinking towards later in the year, and I am pretty sure that there is no way I could fit even a modest studded tire on this thing. You being a commuter I would be pretty concerned about that, mainly the black ice or the frozen runoff spots that seem to pop up.

    How often do you need the racks on the bike? I would let that be my deciding factor. If you really need racks then skip it. If you are looking for a faster commute bike that can also get you out on some of the group rides go for it.

    A good resource. http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/studdedtires.asp

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the reponses.

    1.) It has the shimano 105 group
    2.) I am going to test ride the bike on the gravel trail tomorrow morning and see how it does.
    3.) I do not require racks, because my roomate works in the same building and can carry my stuff to work for me.
    4.) Being my first year of commuting via bicycle, I will not be venturing out when the trail is covered in snow/ice. If I get hooked, (which I probably will) I will buy a dedicated commuter next season.
    5.) I do eventually want to the local road rides.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by WVU RUSH
    3.) I do not require racks, because my roomate works in the same building and can carry my stuff to work for me.
    LOL. I see this arrangement lasting about two weeks.

    You don't necessarily need a rack if you're not giving up your car, though. You can drive in on Monday and leave things, then drive in on Friday and take them home. Just don't rely on someone else taking care of your problems for you.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by WVU RUSH
    Thanks for the reponses.

    1.) It has the shimano 105 group
    2.) I am going to test ride the bike on the gravel trail tomorrow morning and see how it does.
    3.) I do not require racks, because my roomate works in the same building and can carry my stuff to work for me.
    4.) Being my first year of commuting via bicycle, I will not be venturing out when the trail is covered in snow/ice. If I get hooked, (which I probably will) I will buy a dedicated commuter next season.
    5.) I do eventually want to the local road rides.

    My six has the 105 it has been a great group.

    I think you’ll like it, let us know what you decide. If you decide to do some group rides let me know, I try to do the Sunday morning rides that start at the courthouse every week.

  8. #8
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    LBS let me 'borrow' the Synaspe for the weekend.
    Did a short town ride (8mi) and a quick ride on the rail trail. (15 mi)

    Very fast.

    Ride was suprisingly smooth, even on the roughest parts of rail trail.

    Gearing was to 'tall' for me in the city, so LBS is switching current crank to Shimano 105 compact crank for me.

    I will post again after I get new crank, and a few commutes on it.

  9. #9
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    I've used my alloy synapse for commuting at times. The most direct round trip is 3.5 miles, but when I take this bike I am usually at 20-30 miles. No rack yet. Use fanny pack and get my clothes to work some other way. It is a fun bike! Cushy and responsive. This thing smokes on the downhills, so stable. My commuter now is a Monocog 29er with studded tires. Want to build a 26" wheeled single speed for bombing around town, commuting, and hitting the skate park.

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