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Is it worth the extra money?

flamingredgirlflamingredgirl Posts: 4
edited October 2007 in Commuting chat
Sorry to be another newbie asking this question but I couldn't find a thread discussing budget in relation to hybrids as opposed to road bikes.

I'm currently riding a terrible bike, it's too small for me and I will be riding about 6 miles a day for work and university as well as the odd pleasure trip. I have been looking at hybrid bikes but I'm not sure how much difference I'll really notice between a bike which comes in at £300 with mud guards and a rack - a Ridgeback Comet ( ... _bike=TRUE) and a cheaper one where I could add the guards and rack myself, like this £126 apollo - ... yrn_60955#

I know people tend to frown on Halfords and I can see why but I am worried about spending more than I can really afford.


  • ash68ash68 Posts: 320
    Hi, i see the halfords model comes boxed and needs a certain amount of assembly. IMO you should take this into consideration when making your decision. Only you know if you can build the bike up or not. If it was me, I would seriously consider going to your local specialised bike shops and asking their advice and test riding some bikes. The more you try,t he more likely you will be to get what you want and as importantly get a bike that fits you correctly.Ask around your cycling mates where they take their bikes for repair/spare parts.You sometimes get better advice/service from smaller shops,r ather than big chains etc.if monies tight you want to make sure you spend it on the right bike for you.
  • Fab FoodieFab Foodie Posts: 5,155
    Hi Flamingredgirl

    I guess it depends how much cycling you will be doing.
    There are probably reaons why the Apollo is much cheaper (apart from being on special offer at the mo). The Ridgeback most likely has a better frame (weight/comfort/finish), better componants, better wheels and I'd wager the ridgeback will be a much nicer and fun ride and probably last longer.
    Also if you buy from a good cycle shop you are likely to get better advice, better fitting and better after sales service.
    Ridgeback have an excellent reputation, Apollo are on the whole cheap and occasionally cheerfull. At least your choices do not have suspension so that's a good start.

    Suggest test-riding them as a start.

    The pessimists of this world are rarely disappointed....
    Fab's TCR1
  • I really wouldn't go with the Apollo at all. This is not an anti halfords thing, just that they're pretty cheap and nasty.

    I have a Carrera Subway 2 (from Halfords) which is ideal for my 7 mile ride each way (nice and light, slimmish tyres and MTB style frame and bars). The Subway 1 costs around £200 I think and would be a great starter for you.
  • secretsamsecretsam Posts: 4,904
    Agree with poster about Apollos, but the Carrera bikes at Halfords look fine - the Subway 2 is on offer at about £250 at the moment and is well worth a look, I thought about one for my beloved (and me) as cheap decent wheels

    Other than that, get a bike savvy chum to look on e-bay

    It's just a hill. Get over it.
  • Unfortunately Halfords decided to up the price of the Subway 2 from £269 to £329. This happened 2 days before my Cycle2Work voucher arrived!!!!

    The Subway 1 is now £229. The main difference between the two models is the disc brakes, although the Subway 2 is a slightly lighter frame.
  • Hmm, could have sworn I replied.

    I went with the Ridgeback and I'm so glad I did - it's like gliding down the street. We went on a 20 mile bike ride on Sunday to celebrate.

    Thank you all so much for the advice.
  • I just bought an Apollo (my first bike at 27!). Even though I know pretty much nothing about bikes, I know it's censored . It feels cheap and heavy. It's a good work out but I'm going for something a little lighter when I start commuting I think.
  • might be worth trying decathalon, if you have store nearby?
    fwiw I use the LBS (local bike store) and i'd be very tempted to go "second user" if ur on a budget.

  • secretsamsecretsam Posts: 4,904
    Agree with last post, picked up a 2 yo Sirrus in good nick with extras (bottle cage, 'puter, saddle pack) for £200 on flea-bay in August. Should be even more bargains now as winter sets in and people give up riding... :lol:

    It's just a hill. Get over it.
  • redjediredjedi Posts: 44
    edited October 2007
    Good chioce in going for the Ridgeback over the Apollo.

    I started commuting about 4 months ago, and having not riden a bike in 10 years, thought I would go for a cheap bike to see if I enjoyed riding into work every day. Also my budget at the time only allowed me to spend about £150.

    I went for the Apollo Freedom (MTB) from my LBS. Only cost £129 plus I bought a few essentials. It was fine at the time, got me from A-B and back again and it got me hooked on cycling. After about 3 weeks I was already looking for my next bike. :D

    I was going to wait a bit longer but that is not an option anymore. The front brake on the Apollo has failed 3 times, which I fixed twice and then replaced with a cheap Shimano one after the 3 time. Now the bottom bracket is grinding.

    In short the Apollos are fine for kids to mess around on, or for short rides, but not built for a daily commute.

    I have now ordered my Cycle2Work voucher through Evens (which has been delayed because of the post strike :evil: ) and I have ordered a nice Bianchi hybrid in green to be delivered to my local Evans, can't wait.
  • Hmm, could have sworn I replied.

    I went with the Ridgeback and I'm so glad I did - it's like gliding down the street. We went on a 20 mile bike ride on Sunday to celebrate.

    Thank you all so much for the advice.

    Excellent choice. These are very popular bikes and from what i've seen of them you've spent your money very well
    Cycling - The pastime of spending large sums of money you don't really have on something you don't really need.
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