2021.01 – Bike Feature

2008 Specialized Roubaix S-Works SL

Back in 2018, I was looking to retire my 2006 Trek 5200 OCLV bike because of some issues and also the fact it was heavily used in riding, training, racing, and crashes. However a friend convinced me to get a replacement bike and ship my Trek to Italy and keep it there so I would always have a bike to ride when visiting my sister. It would be more than adequate for the amount of riding I would be doing while visiting the old continent, COVID not withstanding, usually in the order of ten to twelve days a year.

So I started canvassing eBay and other buy and sell forums, when I came across a 2008 Specialized Roubaix S-Works SL 54cm frame and fork. After some going back and fourth I took the plunge and made the purchase. I moved all the Shimano 105 5800 11 speed parts over to the new bike along with the wheels and carbon handlebars. I picked up a few more parts and with the help of my friend, we got the bike built up.

After my first ride, I was hooked. The bike was very comfortable and handled well. No it was not race snappy like my race bike (feature coming soon) nor as light, although still respectable at around seventeen pounds. The plush and confident riding characteristics enables me to go out and log long hours in the saddle and not feel beat up when I get home. This bike was built and named for The Hell of the North, the infamous Paris Roubaix race. If it can tame the cobbles, then, it can tame our terrible Long Island roads.

The Roubaix went into service sometime in May 2018, and the re-built Trek went to Italy with me that same month. As my primary bike, I have now logged over eleven thousand miles on it since day one. But not all was well. In the late summer of 2018, my honeymoon with the Roubaix was brought to a screeching halt. One evening in August while I was cleaning the Roubaix, I discovered a crack on the underside of the down tube. I was distraught. I had clay barred, polished, and waxed the frame when it had arrived, so I would have noticed the crack. For that reason, I do not blame the vendor for possibly misleading me. My feelings are that it was either a micro crack and it had finally expanded, or a new crack from some new event.

After some research, I contacted Ruckus Composites in Portland Oregon, and after some photos and back and fourth, I stripped the bike down and sent the frame out to them. The turn around was decent, If I recall it took about three weeks or less. They fixed the crack and repainted the underside of the down tube. I will admit that I did pay extra for the matching paint. The alternative would have been to just have a clear coat over the carbon. They only issue with the paint was that they could not match the graphics of the cobbles etched into the off white paint. I was not upset about this since the underside of the down tube is hardly ever seen.

I got the frame back with a few days to spare before my trip to Montreal and was able to build it all back and take it up to Canada for a few days. It has been over two years since the repair, and I can report that I have not had any issues.

Recently, I performed some new upgrades on the Roubaix. I decided I wanted electronic shifting and since Shimano does not yet make a wireless system, I had to turn to SRAM Red eTap 11 speed. For those who know me, I detest with a passion SRAM Double Tap. I would rather ride single speed in a 53×11 up an 18% grade than use Double Tap. But after testing a friend’s bike with the eTap setup, I was convinced that this would be a good choice. I got lucky because by the time I decided to make the purchase, I think I got the last 11 speed group-set left in the country. SRAM is now pushing their 12 speed setup and to switch overt to that would have been a huge headache and expense. The main reason why I wanted to go wireless is because the Roubaix does not have internal cable routing and as far as I am concerned, strapping Di2 cables with zip tied to the frame is a terrible look.

To sum up, I think I made a good purchase for my everyday riding/training bike. The comfort, the ride feel, and weight makes for a great bike. I also feel that I can still push hard when needed, and the bike responds. Finally, there is one thing that stands out to me the most on this particular setup: I can run a negative angle stem with it perched right on top of the headset for a beautiful slammed look.

So, as of today, the Roubaix sports the following:

  • Frame/Fork: Specialized Roubaix S-Works SL (possibly the Tom Boonen edition – unverified.)
  • Handlebars: Easton EC90 Carbon in 400mm width (vintage ~2010.)
  • Stem: Easton EA70 110mm 7 degrees.
  • Seat Post: Specialized with Zertz inserts.
  • Saddle: ISM Performance Narrow PN 1.1 – white.
  • Wheels: Fulcrum Racing 5 CX/LG.
  • Tyres: Specialized Roubaix Pro 700 x 23/25 – Specialized Roubaix Pro 700 x 23/25 Reflect (for winter.)
  • Tubes: Standard Presta butyl – usually 48mm valve stems.
  • Bottom Bracket: Shimano BBR60 BSA Bottom Bracket.
  • Crank: Shimano 105 5600 11 speed mid compact 52/36. Crank length: 170mm with a left side Stages power meter.
  • Pedals: Speedplay Zero stainless.
  • Cassette: Shimano 105 CS-R7000 11-32T.
  • Chain: Connex 11sO 11-speed chain, waxed in a slow cooker (more on this in a future post.)
  • Shifters: SRAM Red eTAP 11 speed.
  • Derailleurs: SRAM Red eTAP 11 speed, WiFly rear derailleur.
  • Brake Calipers: SRAM Force brake calipers
  • Brake Pads: Kool-Stop Dura2 dual compound Black/Salmon.
  • Brake Cables: Jagwire Road Pro Brake – white.
  • Bar Tape: Specialized S-Wrap HD Handlebar Tape – white.
  • Bottle Cages: Two Specialized Rib Cage II – Black.
  • Computer Mount: K-Edge Garmin Pro Combo Mount – blue.
  • Computer: Garmin Edge 810.
  • Sensors: Garmin Speed Sensor.

5 thoughts on “2021.01 – Bike Feature

  1. Hey Andrew where did you get those Roubaix Pro Tires? I use them also but can’t find any


    1. If I recall, the last order was directly from Specialized. You have to keep watching their site as their inventory seems to come and go. When I see them back in stock I usually order 2-4, due to the volume of riding I tend to go through tires a bit quicker then normal.


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