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What Bike?


CaptivePhotons 18 1.7k 2 England
25 Jul 2011 8:01PM

Quote:Just mentioned this to the husband, seeing as he's a bike man. He suggested a mountain bike, but one which you're able to stiffen the suspension.
Also, were you aware of the 'ride to work' scheme? You are able to buy one bike a year and all the accessories you need tax free. Evans support this scheme.



Thanks Julie. I will be purchasing on the scheme but not with Evans.
cambirder 17 7.2k England
25 Jul 2011 8:14PM

Quote:He suggested a mountain bike, but one which you're able to stiffen the suspension


For the OPs requirements suspension is not required, it will either increase the cost of the bike or come fitted with inferior components to a similar priced non-sus bike.
bainsybike 11 337 United Kingdom
25 Jul 2011 8:25PM
I agree with cambirder - avoid suspension unless you're spending >1.5K. How much off-road will you be doing? If the answer is hardly any, I'd go for a touring bike. Otherwise, get an off-roader and an extra pair of tyres - non-knobbly and as narrow and light as possible, for use on the road. They make a big difference. Try and get a pair with a built-in Kevlar belt or similar, for puncture resistance. You'll find a lot of broken glass and such if you commute regularly.
CaptivePhotons 18 1.7k 2 England
25 Jul 2011 8:33PM
Thanks all for the comments thus far.

At the moment I'm erring toward this one: Giant Tourer. I will not be doing much 'off road' and what I will do will most likely be confined to well trodden paths/tracks.
scottishphototours 17 2.6k 2
25 Jul 2011 8:48PM
Was a long time user of Marin mountain bikes until recently, so I'd plump for anything by Marin at that price range though I believe that Giant get a good name for value these days, and Specialized were always great bikes too.

Here's two I like - Marin and Specialized

Re suspension - cheap suspension is much harder work to ride than it looks - and sometimes quite uncomfortable - all to do with the poor springs not keeping the back end stable enough and so you lose energy. I'd go for a hardtail with a half-decent front suspension unit and disc brakes.

Good call about the tyres too - for commuting, a Kevlar belted tyre suitable for tow-paths would be ideal. You don't need Bontrager full mud tyres...

Andy
(who now spends too much time sitting at computers and not enough time on his bike..)
Andy_Cundell 10 1.1k 5 England
25 Jul 2011 8:49PM
Whatever bike you decide on, I will tell you this................get yourself some of these. I used to get punctures every week and that included all the gatorskins, armadillo and every kevlar tyre on the market. I popped these on and no puncture in 18 months................... I also bought some of these just for good measure.

Andy
cambirder 17 7.2k England
25 Jul 2011 8:57PM
I would avoid that bike do to its cheap suspension fork. You don't need it and at some point in the not too distant future it will start to fail.
nickp 16 491 Scotland
25 Jul 2011 9:43PM
Not much off-road? You definitely don't need suspension. If you do any amount of riding (and if you plan to commute as much as you say) then you need to think about the weight of the bike you get, over and above the initial "comfort" features.

The thing about "road bikes" or cyclo cross machines is they are ergonomically better than cheap hybrids. The position just feels so much better on a roadbike, and you'll be able to pedal far more efficiently.

All those comfort features will in the end start to feel like lead weights. The comfy saddle will, over a few miles, start to chafe, the suspension will just soak up energy and those mudguards, racks and lights will make the thing feel slow and heavy. And eventually you'll start to hate it.

Net result you'll either move to a lighter road bike (dropped or straight bars) or give up riding it. I'd bite the bullet straight off.

How do I know? I went through the same process 4 years ago and after buying the hybrid ended up getting a relatively inexpensive road bike complete with narrow saddle, dropped bars etc etc. Best thing I ever did. I wouldn't take it on really rough tracks but a cyclo cross bike as suggested above would be no problem for occasional use. The hybrid is now relegated to being the shopping only bike.

You could always nip over to the cyclechat forum and ask the same question.
cambirder 17 7.2k England
25 Jul 2011 9:55PM

Quote:mudguards, racks and lights will make the thing feel slow and heavy


Those items don't add much weight (especially good ones) and IMO are essential for all year round commuting, but I would agree with you about everything else.
MrGoatsmilk 13 1.5k England
25 Jul 2011 9:56PM
I use a GT Aggressor 1 for a 10 mile round trip most days for work. I have kevlar lined road tyres which make cycling on the roads much easier even with the hills I encounter each day, front suspension irons out the lumps and holes in the roads which for road use is set to hard. Easy to swap tyres over for a blast over Cannock Chase, the road tyres are fine for canal towpaths and the like. The more I cycle the easier it gets. The bike has lasted around 6 years so far and has done quite a few miles and has even been in the sea.
CaptivePhotons 18 1.7k 2 England
25 Jul 2011 10:14PM

Quote:those mudguards, racks and lights will make the thing feel slow and heavy


Although for my needs they are essential.
nickp 16 491 Scotland
25 Jul 2011 10:20PM

Quote:mudguards, racks and lights will make the thing feel slow and heavy

Those items don't add much weight (especially good ones) and IMO are essential for all year round commuting, but I would agree with you about everything else.



You're right of course. In the picture they looked like the cast iron mudguards that were on my gran's old but classy Raleigh, complete with enclosed chain case. The wheels however are another story. And the reason why the saddle has that spring underneath it? Well the geometry of the bike with loads of your weight fully over the saddle will make it CRASH down into the potholes. A well balanced road bike doesn't do that (quite so badlySmile).
justin c 17 5.1k 36 England
25 Jul 2011 10:21PM
I wouldn't get overly concerned about weight. Keeping the weight down is important if you plan on racing, but weight for such a short commute isn't really a concern in the slightest. You notice it up hills and whilst accelerating but for anything else it's not really an issue. I use a road bike, a decent mountain bike and an old cheap and cheerful steel-framed mountain bike that I use for touring. The latter is over 15 years old, very heavy in comparison to a better quality modern machine but it's as comfortable as an old, favourite armchair. I went out last week and did a 106 mile ride on it, carrying panniers, a rack and three bottles of water and the weight wasn't an issue in the slightest.

Pretty much any half decent bike will be fine for your intended use. I'd go along with the advice above and make sure you use slicks or semi-slicks on the road and either spd pedals or toe clips. Straight bars or drops will be down to personal preference. Both are great, but bar ends are a very welcome addition on straight bars. A comfortable saddle is important. I can recommend a Brooks B17, as will the vast majority of other cycle tourers.
Whatever bike you get learn to keep it well maintained yourself. There's nothing better than a fast, smooth running bike with slick, instant gear changes and effective brakes.
CaptivePhotons 18 1.7k 2 England
25 Jul 2011 10:37PM
Following the welcome advice given already, I'm now thinking this one, Dawes Geneva. It a bit more expensive than I intended to spend but I will not have to pay out for mudguards, rack or lights. The suspension is gone, only has seven gears but I have had bikes in the past with far more than that and they were superfluous to my needs.

I can't just have the road bike/tourer as I need it for other purposes, so I will have to compromise as best I can.
Andy_Cundell 10 1.1k 5 England
26 Jul 2011 8:12AM
Nice choice! Many happy miles! Wink

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