TT-bike curious

I am curious to try a TT-bike for some time. Reasons: I think I may like the position (not sure :smile:), to me it looks asthestically pleasing and I like to ride long strechtes of uninterrupted road.

How did you get into it? Did you buy a cheap/older TT-bike?

I have aero bars for my gravel and trainer bike, but it‘s not the same. I asked around a bit if someone has an old TT-bike lying around, so far my friends replied only with jokes. :joy:

Also: How did you find roadways where one can safely ride a TT-bike? Where I live it‘s mostly city or hills. I do see TT-bikes here and there, but I wouldn‘t ride them everywhere I see them ridden (I do like to be ready to brake). I know some routes a bit farther away though.

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I first got into TTs with a road bike, then clip on’s on it, then I converted it to a TT bike with a TT cockpit, a Fast Forward ahead seat post and a disc cover and eventually once hooked I bought my self a TT frame and built it up.

If you are racing/ training to race its quite good, but for general riding I wouldn’t like it you can ride on the base bar in traffic but the forward position places a lot of weight on your hands. Being more forwards also doesn’t feel as secure/ visible in traffic. Whist I’m flexible and don’t mind the position when actually in the poles other folk complain about it.


I am currently trying to do same transformation. Already have ridden couple years with clip-on aerobars, feeling very relaxed, even in relatively strong cross-winds.

Only couple weeks with TT-bike (actually tri-bike with more storage – I am not racing, more into long-distance solo riding, 6-24h). It feels very different. On aerobars, it is more or less okay(ish), still long way to feel relaxed, though. But base bars are really inconvenient as @HLaB describes. Feeling somewhat nervous getting out/into city, hard to give hand signals or look around, bike becomes twitchy.


Are you planning on racing TTs or tris? If so, then look into one, but if not, don’t (unless it just makes you happy). It’s not the style of bike you’d want to just cruise around on.


It’s a good reason to buy a new bike. Bingo!!!’

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TT bikes are great but don’t really have a place outside of racing imho. Training in the position is important if you are going to be racing but going fast in the extensions on open roads has some risk. Not unmanageable but not sure I would choose to do it outside of the context of race prep


My tt bike is extremely comfortable on a closed course and unbearable in the real world.


I haven’t.

I train TT on the trainer only. You might be able to get out 05:00 on a Sunday for a few hours flat out loops on a straight main road.

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What is the issue with running clip ons with your road bike? Are you not able to get into a good TT position? With the right seat post and cockpit setup, it’s often possible to get very close to TT bike positioning. Unless you just don’t like your road bike set up that way, clip ons with the right setup should check 90% of the speed/position box and then you still have normal bars for navigating/stability when needed. If you don’t have electronic shifting with remote shifting on the aero bars, that kind of sucks, but very little downside other than that. Yeah, it’s not as “pro” looking riding clip ons vs. a real TT bike, but it will be plenty fast and likely more comfortable. My TT bike gathers dust unless I have a TT coming up. They are fun to ride fast, but the novelty wears off for me pretty quick for everyday riding/training. My gravel bike with clip ons is much more fun and safe if I want to spend time in aero position.

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There seems to be comprehensive consensus here. :sweat_smile:

I don‘t race and I like to feel safe, especially in the city and in other busy places. Being faster on long rides would be really nice, but there are other ways to achieve that. I will to go that route first. :slight_smile:

And looking good on a bike can be achieved in other ways too. :sweat_smile:

Thanks for all the answers!

I am a seasoned triathlete and have owned TT bikes for this reason alone. Before committing to a full TT bike, I went down the same learning curve that others suggested here. Clip on bars, zero/forward offset seat posts, etc. It is close, but still not like the magic feeling of a real TT bike for some reason. Nonetheless, submitting yourself to that feeling is valuable information to know before taking the plunge.
The TT position is not for everyone and is definitely not as comfortable as it looks even for very flexible and well fitted riders. I see a lot of people at races doing silly things to their TT setup to get a comfortable fit and subsequently undo all the advantages that a TT bike would have gained them. Make sure you’re not one of these people or else your investment is wasted.
I still use my road bike most of the time. The TT bike only comes out for solo rides on car-free roads, some indoor training, mileage before races to ensure the position feels good still, and races themselves.
Hope this helps…but it sounds like you were already decided.

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Part of the curiosity is that I started trying around with a „more forward“ position and kind of like it (for shorter rides, under 2-3h).

I have clip ons. They are sitting on my trainer, I haven‘t really used them outside. Sadly they don‘t fit my road bike (aero bars), I could convert my gravel to a road bike and put them there.

Still I don’t know enough safe routes to use them on at the moment.

Thanks for your answer. :slight_smile:

Personally, my TT position is the most comfortable position I have on any of my bikes…and I tested under .20 CdA.

In fact, when I did the HVTB program a few years ago, I set up my TT bike on the trainer because I knew it would be the most comfortable option for long hours on the trainer.

You don’t have to be flexible to have a good, low and comfortable TT position (I can barely get my hands past my knees, let alone down to my toes)…but you do need to properly rotate your hips. That is really the key.


Agreed on all points…“flexibility” was a poor choice of words. Hip rotation is definitely key. Any past shoulder injuries/impingement as well can really limit the ability to stay in the bars for long durations…which is really necessary to get the gains you paid for.
Thanks Power13.

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I’ve been doing tris for a few seasons now all on my old(ish) supersix evo. I’ve also done a few 100+km rides here and there.

I decided that i was going to get a Tri bike this season and started shopping in fall 2022… and i found a brand new one for a decent price, Argon 18 e117 with sram force rim brake. I got a proper fit from the shop, it somewhat specializes in triathlon (as it was the only shop with an inventory of different tri bikes in stock withinin probably 50km of the biggest city in canada)
It was $1k less than the disc version with an alright drivetrain.

I did a few rides on the trainer here and there, my training definitely wasn’t at the same level as previous years. First few times i took the bike out in spring it felt quite alien and it was hard to find a comfortable position. And then after maybe a month of going for a ride or 2 per week it clicked. I can now spend tons of time in aero position without feeling uncomfortable.

Now the gearing is different so that was another thing i had to get accustomed with… did one ride over 125km ish, and the one thing i gotta say, with my ISM saddle and the position, my general groin/butt area felt great after it, normally on the roadie (with my fizik arione saddle…which might be part of the problem) i would feel like a 2x4 was used to tenderize the area if i rode that type of distance.

Overall it pulls harder once im in TT position, but it’s DEFINITELY heavier than my roadie and feels more hmmm… “big” and awkward compared to my roadie. Whereas my road bike is light and nimble, the TT feels a bit twitchy in its handling but it feels like it wants you to push harder to reap the speed benefits.

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This is a common reaction to riding a TT bike…a lot of us have a very hard time doing “easy” rides on them. Ex-Pro triathlete Jordan Rapp finally got a road bike for training because being on his TT bike always made him want to push it.

I have experienced the same thing.


i feel like if i go easy power/easy pace on it im slow.
but man once you settle down into TT position and get into sweet spot/threshold territory…

it feels like UNLIMITED POWERRRR lol
so totally understand wanting to have another bike to calm down
going from compact to semi compact doesn’t help me either