2015 Search owner review- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    zep
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    2015 Search owner review

    My summary of the 2015 Norco Search Carbon Ultegra follows--seems there are few owner reviews of this model, so posting this to assist anyone considering the Search. Note that I have no personal experience with the Steel frame model, only the Carbon frame.

    I use this bike for both tarmac and gravel riding--almost all my area routes have both surfaces. Bought a 53cm Search, based on it's geometry chart Reach & Stack lengths--an excellent fit for me, at 67.5 (171.5cm) inches tall, with a 30.5 (77.5cm) inch inseam. Right off the showroom floor, the complete bike was 19.6 pounds. The stiffness-to-comfort balance of this bike I find to be very, very good. The Search seems to have about as stiff a BB as any bike I've ridden, but still does a great job of soaking up vibration. Zero torsional twist in the top tube or front end, detected. The Search feels both stiffer at the BB and yet more vibration-controlled than my custom Gunnar 'Hyper-X' steel frame, which I've owned since 2011 (recently sold).

    For comparison, I also own a Specialized Diverge Carbon bike, and the Search has much the same ride characteristics. The Diverge might be just a bit stiffer at the BB (when used with the same wheels), but that and a bit more of a vertically 'limber' TT on the Diverge are the two subtle differences. Also, the Diverge has a shorter chainstay, and perhaps feels slightly more agile, during a stand-up sprint. The ride characteristics of both bikes are really awesome. The Search feels more "normal" of the two...it rides like a good steel bike, just stiffer, lighter, with more vibration damping. With the same wheelset (Stan's Grail & Hutchinson Sector tires), the Search weighs 17.7 pounds--a small fraction less than the Diverge, also shod with the Grails.

    Very competent parts selection on the Search Ultegra, though the wheels are a bit heavy at 1860 grams (bare--no tire/tube/rim strips/rotor/cassette). Zero issues with the Shimano hydro disc brakes, but the resin pads wear somewhat quickly--great, otherwise. Stock tires are quite heavy at 480 grams each (wire bead). Didn't ride the Search with the stock wheels, as I owned a set of Stan's Grail wheels already. The Norco website lists the 2016 Search Ultegra wheels as DT R23, with Clement USH 35c tires--smart move.

    The Search will fit a set of full fenders and a 34mm wide (measured) tire. That's how mine is currently configured, as it is wet here, late in the year. Without fenders, 37-38mm wide tires should be no problem.

    Overall, quite impressed with the Search, and glad I bought it (on sale, too--yea). It does deliver on it's design spec, as a lively, endurance-style, road bike that can easily handle larger tires and gravel/dirt surfaces. There is a small bit of cable rattle, from the internal cables, but nothing extreme.

    Just my opinions, hope it may help someone searching for info....
    Last edited by zep; 11-17-2015 at 12:24 PM. Reason: added detail
    Get some miles in--we've got weather coming.

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    I am considering a Specialized Diverge carbon bike.
    What do you mean by "a bit more of a vertically 'limber' TT on the Diverge"?

    Do you mean to say the top tube is lower down compared with the Search?

  3. #3
    zep
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    Quote Originally Posted by borgey007 View Post
    I am considering a Specialized Diverge carbon bike.
    What do you mean by "a bit more of a vertically 'limber' TT on the Diverge"?

    Do you mean to say the top tube is lower down compared with the Search?
    Meaning the Diverge seems less stiff, in the vertical axis. Or, more absorbent to larger amplitude shock, than the Search. Only by a small degree.
    Get some miles in--we've got weather coming.

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    Ok, thanks!

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