Hi I was wondering what I should be shooting for in total bike weight . What does a good Cat 1 aim for i.e. under 20 or 18 lbs and what would it take to be competitive in my Cat 3/4 ambitions.
I think that the uci weight limit is 15lbs, I could be wrong. That being said checkout www.plusonelap.blogspot.com for some ideas on how to trim the fat off your rig or to help you make equipment choices...unless you have a bike from the eighties that weighs a million pounds just ride it and have fun.
If you're a really good runner, bring it down to about 10lbs. With enough carbon and Ti it's definitely possible. If you are better at pedaling the bike, keep the weight around 18lbs, that way your shit won't break and you'll be able to train everyday on the same bike you race on.
Bike fit and tire selection/pressure are far more important than bike weight in cyclocross. Get a bike that fits, get tires that work for your conditions, optimize your tire pressure - voila - you will blow by the guy that bought the lightest bike but doesn't have it dialed in.
Let's put it this way. You can race on the lightest, stiffest, most expensive bike and Sven Nys will ride a tricycle. Who would win? Find a bike that fits you and you feel comfortable on. For 99.9% of us, bike weight is irrelevant. A few extra pounds carrying a bike up a short hill is not going to make or break you. Power tests using two different bikes with a weight difference won't be any different if you are in the same shape. Train with a purpose and then race like hell. That is all you ever need know.
Now, if you are asking because you really don't know, then a decent geared bike will be in the neighborhood of 20 lbs. As you drop weight on the bike, you will also drop more cash. You change a part from aluminum to carbon - great, but why and how will it help you? Shimano 105 or Dura-Ace cassette? Pretty much the same except for some grams. Big difference in price. Focus more on getting good tires and dialing in the pressure. You can shave some grams and make your bike lighter or you can eat less, focus your training, feel better, and have money for beer after you race. Most importantly, have fun with it.
Thanks for all the replies. I agree it is often the rider and not the bike. On my road bike you spend lots of money to get some thing light and then immediately start hanging weight on it. In cyclo cross it doesn't seem like you would need to carry as much stuff with you. It's time to select my first cyclo bike and one of the parameters is weight and was just looking for feed back. Brakes kind of interest me right now as to the different design of center pull cyclo brakes and the extra brake levers. Seems this would be the perfect bike for early season dicey conditions rather than the slick tired road bike. thanks mitch
Don't get caught up in weight. More often than not, you will make durability v weight decisions in cross. Such examples are aluminium bars and seatpost over carbon, Ultegra v DA cassette or Force v Red cassette.
My bike weighed in at a bit above 18lbs and raced Elite level decently. Sure I could have made it lighter by getting some lighter parts or ditching the powermeter but I felt there was very little benefit.