Cervelo Caledonia 5 Recommended Weight Limit

Just bought a nice Caledonia 5 Rival eTap AXS bike and it’s my first experience with a proprietary D-shaped carbon seat post. I am a 93 KG rider and am wondering if I am too heavy for the wonderful carbon seat post and hidden set screw? If so, does anyone know of an aluminum option for this part of a otherwise wonderful bike? I may elect to go with the Caledonia that has an alloy seatpost and feel that might be the best option for my “geometry!”

Thanks for your responses in advance…
AEG in Seattle

I’d shoot Cervelo an email. Can’t imagine 93kg would even remotely be an issue based off the published weight limits of other brands that make similar bikes. Just make sure you’re using fiber grip as a good practice which you’d do regardless of weight. 93kg is fairly normal weight for an adult male in most western countries especially if you’re over 6’ tall and are muscular enough to open a jar of pickles.

To give some context an S-Works Crux with carbon components maxes out at a rider weight of 240lbs/109kg and can hold a 275lb/125kg rider if you swap out carbon bars, stem, and seatpost.

Alfred: Wow! Thanks for the information. I took this beauty for it’s inagural ride and the seat post kept slipping. I adjusted it and it continued to do so. Ended up finding out that it was cracked and if your assessment of wight limits is accurate, I wonder if the bike shop used any or enough the carbon fiber grip at all. Hmmm…I have to be diplomatic with the bike shop today…Ha Ha.

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I stand corrected, here [https://eriksbikeshop.vteximg.com.br/arquivos/Cervelo_Bike_Owners_Manual.pdf]

Is a link to the owners manual. Seems like a really weak limit compared to other brands.

Jesus…

Wow, that is a really low limit, and they don’t mention that on their website either.

I’m a similar weight to the OP and the bike shop didn’t mention anything about a weight limit when trying to sell me an Aspero.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the shop wasn’t aware of the limit, and sounds like they don’t do a great job of considering the needs of us larger cyclists (both height and weight).

Would Cervelo be able to deny a warranty claim for a cracked frame is the purchaser was under the limit but the bike shop had allowed larger people to test ride it?

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Wtf!
88kg rider limit… Selling a road bike with that limit screams “bad engineers” to me.

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Funny enough, I was helping a guy on a Canyon with his slipping seatpost. We took it out of the frame and found that there wasn’t any grip paste or grease at all.

Also, the seatpost kept slipping at the max specified torque of 8Nm, and at 1Nm beyond that. I knew that there would be a safety margin built in to the spec, but I wasn’t willing to go any higher, and the seatpost was still pretty loose. Tolerance issue?

I agree that 88 kg or 194 lbs seems low. That cuts out quite a few riders. OK, so maybe the regular Caledonia has a higher limit - but can we check?

They even sell a 61 cm frame size, and I imagine very few people tall enough for a bike that size are under 88 kg.

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Yes, that would seem to exclude many riders who would appreciate this bike.
We all can’t be Nario Quintana…

Does anyone know if the fiber grip compound needs to be replaced every time the post is adjusted or moved? THX!

That

is the document “bicycle user manual” this appendix is copied from.
And it says that those weight limits apply to all their current bikes.

I actually approve of Cervélo’s honesty. Although that note should of course be visible right in the product specs, so that no one could say: “But I didn’t download the owner’s manual before buying the bike, and the dealer did also not inform me that I might be too heavy for that bike.”

But which company does that? I don’t know many.

Which then leads to the wide-spread and dangerously wrong notion that any guy who considers himself within a “normal” range of body weight for his size might go and ride one of those bikes he has watched riders race in the TdF, somehow assuming that the higher the price of a bike the higher its quality and therefore strength of the frame and its components.

I actually have those talks with prospective customers who weigh considerably more than 100 kg a few times each year.

We don’t read many stories of catastrophic frame and fork failures and their dire consequences, do we? I know for certain that those events happen. There are officially authorized experts - authorized by jurisdictional administrations -, and I happen to personally know one of them, who don’t do anything else in their jobs than dealing with those events. But understandably the cycling media is not too interested to cover those cases. That hasn’t changed, and it probably won’t because they do of course have a vital interest in keeping their relations to the cycling industry intact.

So guys approaching 100 kg or maybe even weighing more, always look for info about weight limits before buying. And if you don’t find any, not even in owner’s manuals buried in the footprints of some manufacturer’s website, take that as a red light blinking at an alarming frequency.

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It seems like a rather low weight limit for all the sizes they have and that they have gravel bikes that its uniform across them all. Slightly wonder if its just the 100kg is where they stop testing. An article from bicycling.com seems to imply that cervelo believes an aspero would be fine for someone up to 285lbs with their carbon reserve wheels. Article is about trying to find a production bike for a larger rider and he ended up on a cervelo aspero. Bikes For Big and Tall Riders | Best Bikes

Not much credit for honesty though since they hide it in an appendix within the owners manual. Seems like a good way to get out of warranty claims. Trek lists the max weight on the product page and Spesh has a whole clearly titled document dedicated to the weight limitations of their bikes. This bike didn’t break because the rider is 11lbs over the max weight though. Likely assembly error or a defective seatpost.

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Isn’t that confusing? It appears that Matt Phillips from Bicycling.com had contacted Cervélo and they approved it for that rider’s weight despite what is written in the current OM on their website. What the …?

Part of why i wonder if they just stop testing there. They had the bike last year that finished the tour stage with the broken seat stay. Even though the pros are significantly lighter weight than average joes kinda think if it was a true weight cut off that the frame couldnt handle it wouldnt have been able to finish that stage from a full system perspective.

The Caledonia is marketed more towards “normal” riders than racers, so it should be what most riders gravitate towards. The Trek and Canyon endurance bikes are listed as having max weights of 125 and 120 kg respectively, although that includes the rider and the bike.

It’s fine if they want to engineer it for a lower weight limit to save weight or give more compliance, but they really should be more upfront about that. As I said earlier, an 88 kg person who needs a 61 cm frame is probably under the “normal” weight for their height.

Cervelo isn’t alone in not making the weight limits readily accessible. It is a valid point that heavier people should be verifying that the bike is suitable, but manufacturers need to make that information easily visible. I shouldn’t have to dig through the manual to determine if a bike I’m interested in is appropriate for me. Bike shops need to be aware of this as well, as they can find themselves in a rather uncomfortable position if a customer can’t get warranty coverage because they are too big for the bike the shop sold them.

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Completely agree. That’s how it should be done.

Responsable manufacturers will eventually get there even though that means they have to accept losing some prospective customers who will rather choose a product without a weight limit assuming that this one is strong enough for everyone.

I own a 61 cm 2018 Cervelo R3 with a Cervelo 27.2 carbon seatpost. I weigh 88 kg and am 190 cm. I bought the R3 new.

I had the same post slipping problem at first, but used carbon paste and that solved the issue. I’ve never added more paste in 5 years of riding it.

Mine is just one data point, but I’ve loved this bike and it’s stood up to my, um abuse. That is, being a bigger person.

good thing you refrained from any further applications of carbon paste after the initial one five years hence, the stuff is exceedingly rare.

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