San Francisco: Rapha Bike Hire

One of the main highlights of my trip to SF was having the opportunity to rent a Canyon Aeroad bike from RCC near the Marina District. In this post, I want to not only review my experience at Rapha, but to also provide some insight on the bike itself.

 

Rapha Cycle Club: SF

 

I wanted to stop by RCC the day before my bike hire pick-up was scheduled (to ensure everything was squared away, etc…) When I first walked in, I was surprised with how crowded it was. Then, I realized: the CX Nats races were playing on the TV! The layout of the store is very open and inviting, similar to the layout of the NYC club. Though in SF, there was a second floor where people can hang out, drink coffee, and eat pastries. There were also two large flat screens on either side of the store. I made sure to grab a complimentary coffee for RCC members on my way out.

 

Rapha Cycle Club SF

 

 

Rapha Bike Hire: Canyon Aeroad CF SLX

 

The following day I went to go pick up my Rapha Bike Hire! I was super excited and looking forward to experiencing this high end road bike. After signing in, I gave my ID and credit card over to the staff member (also handed over my clipless pedals – RCC bike hires don’t come with pedals). 10 minutes later, the bike was ready! Unfortunately, the weather was extremely rainy that day, so I loaded the bike up into the zipcar.

After getting back to the airbnb, I decided to take some pictures of the bike with the DSLR camera.The bike was full carbon with Dura Ace Di2. I didn’t have a scale to calculate the weight, but it was extremely light.  I opened to rent a medium sized frame, though I would have fit on a large as well. Getting the medium placed me in an even more aerodynamic position on this rocket! From saddle to the center of the bottom bracket, the distance was 76cm.

 

Rapha Bike Hire 1

 

Rapha Bike Hire 2

 

Rapha Bike Hire 3

 

Rapha Bike Hire 4

 

Rapha Bike Hire 6

 

Rapha Bike Hire 7

 

Rapha Bike Hire 8

 

Rapha Bike Hire 9

 

I had never ridden a Canyon frame before this and I have to say, I really liked the feel and handling of it. The carbon took care of the road chatter through some of the rougher SF streets. It did take some time for me to get used to a highly aerodynamic position, especially since I ride my Cannondale Caadx on a regular basis.

 

Dura Ace Di2:

In a word: wow. I wasn’t sure what to expect from Di2, since I’ve never had a bike with electronic shifting. At first, I had to get reacclimated with Shimano since I’ve been riding with SRAM components since 2015. On top of that, I quickly learned that the Di2 shifters don’t push in like mechanical Shimano shifters. To shift with Di2, you literally only have to lightly tap the shifter. There are two grooves, as you might expect to see on any other Shimano shifter. I recorded some quick footage showcasing how neat the electronic shifting is!

 

 

I will talk more about the ride experience in future posts recapping my SF adventure!

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