I’ve Rekindled my love of an Old Flame – Serotta CSI

My Custom Steel Serotta CSI aka Sarah with Shimano Dura-Ace 7800

Yes it’s true an old flame has come back into the picture.  Sarah, my custom steel Serotta CSI, has recently piqued my interest again.  Earlier in the week I made the decision to sell Sasha, my Cervelo Soloist SL.  I wondered which bike I would ride if I sold Sasha.  After only a little thinking I decided to get Sarah back on the road.  I took my SRM 7900 wireless power meter crankset along with the Power Control 7 head unit off of Sasha and installed it on Sarah.  Sarah is equipped with a full 7800 Dura-Ace group.  And honestly, I am a bigger fan of 7800 than I am of 7900.  I wasn’t all that impressed with the mechanical 7900 Dura-Ace offering from Shimano.  Hence, I just skipped mechanical 7900 Dura-Ace and went right to the electronic Dura-Ace Di2 group which was on Felicia then Sasha and is now on hold waiting for a new bike.

I’ve done two rides on Sarah and I’m in love again  Her “steel is real” ride has no comparison.  I was even thinking today as I was riding that I might sell Rebecca, a Cervelo R3-SL.  Wednesday  I rode through Santiago Canyon.  Thursday I was in San Diego.  I rode from Encinitas to Ramona and back through Rancho Santa Fe.  I chose to climb through Highland Valley Rd on the way out to Ramona because I wanted the challenge of the steep ramps along with scarce traffic.  I was curious how Sarah, a steel frame, would compare to my super uber carbon frames on the 10-14% pitches found on Highland Valley Rd.  By the way, it is one of San Diego’s best kept secret roads 😉  Weather was almost perfect- just a little headwind to whine about 😉  Sarah performed beautifully!  So now I am spending more time with Sarah and enjoy the “steel is real experience”.

7 thoughts on “I’ve Rekindled my love of an Old Flame – Serotta CSI

  1. Nice meeting you today, George. I hate to say it, but the picture does not show how beautiful your Serotta really is. The groupo on this bike with that coloring is just about perfect and I’m also a big fan of steel bikes. Out of all the bikes in the shop that was the first one that really caught my eye.

    • Mike,

      Thank you for reading my blog. Also I want to thank you for introducing yourself to me at the shop.

      Sarah is a beauty. She rides as good as she looks too! 😉 Maybe we’ll see you on the road sometime.


  2. Chris,

    Thank you for reading my blog. I will be prepared for any and all comments disparaging steel — such as “steelis so heavy” hmm…I weighed a few carbon bikes in the store the other day and my 12 year old steel frame weighed the same and in some cases weighed LESS!


  3. George, how do you feel about titanium frames vs. steel? (especially for rando rides) I tried out a Litespeed Ultimate once and it seemed like it climbed better than my carbon Specialized Ruby elite. I’m also trying to figure out a good bike to travel with – I don’t think Ruby is the one. Thanks.

    • Debra,

      Thank you for reading my blog. How did you come across it anyway?

      I think Titanium bikes are fine. I LOVE steel and would prefer to ride steel. I have done lots of rando rides on Sarah. The Litespeed Ultimate is a fairly stiff bike and I wouldn’t recommend it for rando rides. A 3/2 blend Ti bike is softer and more compliant. The Litespeed Ultimate is 6/4 blend which is stiffer and not as compliant. I rode Ultimate for a few weeks and I will tell you I would rather ride a steel bike for randos than a 6/4 blend bike. It’s interesting that you thought it climbed better than your Ruby. The Ti bike will travel really well. But I should tell you that IF you pack a carbon bike properly it will be safe. You may consider a Ritchey steel breakaway. They ride great! They fold and pack into a suitcase. I think you can still avoid the oversize charge as well.


      • George, I came across your link among the SD Randos, when I was a wanna be randonneur. Now I have done a few rando rides with the PCH group. Thanks for the advice. I am leaning towards the Surly Travelers Check, I think the geometry will fit me better than the Breakaway. Do you have any experience with it?

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