Review of the Kestrel Talon 2015
We are always on the look out for top value products and the 2015 Kestrel Talon Tri bike is no exception. Built from quality components and a brand you can trust, you would be mad to pass up the opportunity to own one of these awesome machines.
The 2015 Kestrel Talon Tri-Shimano 105 Carbon Fiber Bike is a new offering from Kestrel Bikes. This is a dual position road and triathlon bike designed for both the road warrior and avid triathlete.
What this means is you can transition from triathlon back to normal road use if you decide that the sport of Triathlon is not for you in the long run.
This will also save you quite a bit of money because some of the dedicated tri bikes cost substantially more than a normal road going bike.
The beauty of this bike is because of some of the superb features its like buying two bikes for the price of one.
Features of the 2015 Kestrel Talon
First up we will look at the frame. This is a full carbon frame made up of a blend of both 700k and 800k High Modulus Carbon Fiber. Have a look around and see if you can get a full carbon bike of this quality for the same sort of money and you will see the value of this bike straight away.
Design wise Kestrel followed on from the proven designs of previous models without swaying too much from the original A2 Wind Tunnel designed bike. This slick aero frame is designed with speed in mind. Another feature that you only see on high end bikes.
Next, we will take a look at the seat post and saddle setup. It comes with the awesome Kestrel tri post with adjustable rails and sliders.
This means you can move the saddle about to suit both normal road use and then adjust into a more aggressive angle for full aero triathlon use. This in itself is awesome. The saddle is by Oval concepts – the 300 Tri with Satin Rails – Oval Concepts are a brand that you will see all the time in Triathlon circles and a brand you can rely on.
This saddle is designed for triathlon racing and aero setups but suits perfectly if you want to just switch back to normal road use because of the adjustable slider on the seatpost.
2015 Talon Aerobar Setup
Next, we are going to look at the aero bar and handlebar setup. The new 2015 Tri bike from Kestrel comes complete with dedicated Oval Concepts clip on aero bars and a tri specific base bar.
This is perfect for both triathlon and road use.
The 11 speed FSA Metron bar end shifters coupled with the Shimano 105 gear setup provide a very smooth gear change.
Because of the quality of these components, they should remain hassle free and require very limited maintenance for quite a while. This is great when you are getting in triathlon because you might not yet have the skills to perform your own bike repairs.
Kestrel Talon Wheel setup
The 2015 Talon sports the Oval Concept 327’s.
These wheels make for a very comfortable ride quality with super-smooth sealed bearings. They are designed for both road and triathlon use with a 27mm deep rim and a 22mm wide setting, all tied into an Oval sealed cartridge.
The tires are the Vittoria Zaffiro Pro 700 x 23c Folding tires which will give you maximum grip and stability on the road.
This particular wheel setup is exactly what you need for both speed and safety on either triathlon race day or just out for a nice long ride on the road.
Main Features Recap
- The 2015 Kestrel Talon was designed in the A2 Wind Tunnel with aerodynamic tubing that gives the Kestrel Talon extraordinary speed on race day.
- The frame is made from a blend of 800K and 700K carbon fiber for the frame and fork which gives the bike the perfect combination of lightweight and stiffness.
- This is an awesome feature of the Kestrel – Dual-platform geometry for a stable ride with both road and triathlon configuration.
- Kestrel EMS Pro seatpost adjusts from 80 to 72 degree giving you the perfect set up for both road and triathlon use.
Here is an overview from Kestrel themselves on some of the features of the 2015 Talon range.
|Kestrel Talon Details
|Color(s)||Satin Black and Charcoal w/ Charcoal and Red|
|Sizes||48cm, 52cm, 55cm, 57cm, 60cm|
|Main frame||Blend of 700K & 800K High Modulus Carbon Fiber|
|Rear triangle||700K Carbon Fiber With Replaceable Derailleur Hanger|
|Fork||EMS Pro SL Aero, Full Carbon, 1 1/8″ – 1 1/4″Â
Tapered Alloy Steerer
|Wheelset||Oval Concepts 327 wheelset, 700c, 20/24H, cartridge bearing
|Tires||Vittoria Zaffiro Pro 700 x 23c Folding|
|Crankset||Oval Concepts 520 Alloy Compact 50/34T|
|Bottom bracket||Oval Concepts Integrated, External Bearings|
|Front derailleur||Shimano 105, Braze-on|
|Rear derailleur||Shimano 105, 11-sp|
|Shifters||FSA Metron bar end, 11 sp|
|Chain||KMC X11, 11-sp|
|Brake set||Tektro Dual Pivot|
|Brake levers||Oval Concepts 701|
|Headset||FSA Integrated, 1 1/8″ Top, 1 1/4″ Bottom with 15mm
|Handlebar||Oval Concepts 350 6061
Alloy Base Bar, Oval Concepts 750 Clip On Ergo Bend Extensions
|Stem||Oval Concepts 313 6061 3D-forged Alloy, 31.8mm +/- 6 degrees|
|Saddle||Oval Concepts 300 Tri w Satin Steel Rails|
|Seat post||Kestrel EMS Pro w/ Ritchey Clamp System|
|Accessories||Kestrel Suede Tape|
Kestrel Talon Frame Sizes
|Seat Tube, Center to Center||50.5||54.5||57.5||59.5||62.5|
|Top Tube, Center to Center||51||53.3||55.6||57||59.5|
|Seat Tube Angle||75.5°||74.5°||73.5°||73°||72.5°|
|Forward Seatpost Effective Angle||78.5°||77.5°||76.5°||76°||75.5°|
|Head Tube Angle||72.7°||73°||73.5°||73.5°||74°|
|Bottom Bracket Height||26.4||26.4||26.4||26.6||26.6|
|Bottom Bracket Drop||71||71||71||68||68|
|Stand Over Height, at Top Tube Center||74.2||76.5||79.1||81.2||83.9|
Thanks for taking the time to read this review. We had great success with the 2014 model of the Talon and are expecting similar if not better results with the 2015 model. If you have invested in one of these bikes then let us know. Feedback from our readers is critical to the success of this review.
If you are on the market for a new entry-level triathlon bike or looking for a dual-purpose road and triathlon bike then you can’t go wrong with the new Talon from Kestrel bikes.
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