Forum home Commuter cycling forum Commuting chat

Buying a New Hybrid/Urban (Marin/Cannondale/Giant)

whiterhynowhiterhyno Posts: 5
edited July 2008 in Commuting chat
Hello,

I'm looking to buy a new hybrid/urban bike and would appreciate some advice.

I ride about 70/30 road to off and appreciate being able to ride in forests and pretty fast on road. I previously rode a Saracen mountain bike (no suspension, acera gears, good old school brakes).

The bikes I have been looking at are the following:


Cannondale Bad Boy 650 2008 (£549.99):
http://gb.cannondale.com/bikes/08/ce/model-8BRD.html

Marin Muirwood 29er 2008 (£474.99)
http://www.marin.co.uk/2008/bikedetail.php?ModNo=3815

Giant Escape M Zero 2008 (£399.99 which is already £100 off list)
http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-GB/bikes/lifestyle/2142/31767/


Each bike, I can probably get about £50-75 off the list as I will be buying 2.

I'm edging towards the Marin as it's pretty rigid, however the Giant has hydraulic brakes and the Cannondale seems a better bike. Otherwise, I'm a bit lost as to which has the better components.

Which do you reckon would be the best buy or should I be looking elsewhere?

Thanks in advance.

Posts

  • no-matesno-mates Posts: 31
    Hi Whiterhyno,

    I'm a complete noob, hadn't been on a bike for 15 years until five weeks ago when I bought a bad boy for my commute. I'm now hooked, did 20 miles yesterday and the same route in reverse today and I reckon its all down to the bike. I love it and mine's only the bog standard one. Great bike in my very limited opinion.
  • JMC39JMC39 Posts: 38
    I'm in a similar situation, however I think I am going for the Carerra Fury. One bike you may want to look at which is my other choice is the Gary Fisher Kaimai or Utopia, both road geared hybrids.
    FNC 13 - Nobbly MTB, Pannier, Normal clothes, and GPS!
  • meanwhilemeanwhile Posts: 392
    whiterhyno wrote:
    Hello,
    I'm edging towards the Marin as it's pretty rigid, however the Giant has hydraulic brakes and the Cannondale seems a better bike. Otherwise, I'm a bit lost as to which has the better components.
    .

    NEVER buy on components. That way you'll most often end up with the bike that has the worst frame.

    I can't see you'd want hydraulics on a commuter bike unless you have amazingly weak fingers; the Bad Boy has a love/hate rep. Buying blind I'd say the Marin is the safe bet - Marin generally design sane but excellent bikes with good all rounder ability, and the 29er format makes a lot of sense - but the best thing to do is ride them and buy the bike that suits you.
  • meanwhile wrote:
    NEVER buy on components. That way you'll most often end up with the bike that has the worst frame.

    I can't see you'd want hydraulics on a commuter bike unless you have amazingly weak fingers; the Bad Boy has a love/hate rep. Buying blind I'd say the Marin is the safe bet - Marin generally design sane but excellent bikes with good all rounder ability, and the 29er format makes a lot of sense - but the best thing to do is ride them and buy the bike that suits you.
    :D Thanks.

    Just for knowledge, could you run me through the difference in spec?

    The lifetime warranty of the Bad Boy frame is appealing as well as the price of the Giant, however the 29ers seem more versatile.

    Is Marin the better bike or just more suitable?
  • TheBoyBillyTheBoyBilly Posts: 749
    As meagain said, the Marin would seem at first glance the better option. You will always know a decent frame which was designed for purpose but would you really be able to tell the difference on the road between say a mid-range Shimano set-up and a slightly higher range one? I'm not so sure I could.
    But a good frame will have you set up nicely and help you stay in the saddle all day. That and a comfortable saddle.
    To disagree with three-fourths of the British public is one of the first requisites of sanity - Oscar Wilde
  • meanwhilemeanwhile Posts: 392
    whiterhyno wrote:
    meanwhile wrote:
    NEVER buy on components. That way you'll most often end up with the bike that has the worst frame.

    I can't see you'd want hydraulics on a commuter bike unless you have amazingly weak fingers; the Bad Boy has a love/hate rep. Buying blind I'd say the Marin is the safe bet - Marin generally design sane but excellent bikes with good all rounder ability, and the 29er format makes a lot of sense - but the best thing to do is ride them and buy the bike that suits you.
    :D Thanks.

    Just for knowledge, could you run me through the difference in spec?

    Item by item??? Life's too short. They're all reasonably specced bikes from ok to good bike makers, and the biggest difference in ride will come from the frame. Ride them, buy the one you like. Forget components, forget better worse - find "feels right". Don't forget that saddles, grips, tyres, even chain rings and gears can easily be changed by the store as part of the deal; try to concentrate on acceleration, cornering, balance, riding position, and smoothness of ride
    The lifetime warranty of the Bad Boy frame is appealing

    In practice, no. Few bikes die of the frame wearing out: this is C'dale countering an old perception that they build short lived frames, from when they pioneered aluminum bikes.

    Anyway, UK consumer law means that if your bikes within about 6 years of buying for no good reason, you can make the store replace it.
    as well as the price of the Giant, however the 29ers seem more versatile.

    Not really. Now that there are really excellent 26 inch road tyres the formats are about even. 26s can be much more agile, especially at low speeds. How much do you value a tight turning circle at 8mph? Depends on the traffic you ride and how you ride it.
    Is Marin the better bike or just more suitable?

    It's likely to be the safer buy-blind bet, not knowing your tastes and riding style, because that's the type of maker Marin is. C'dales are love/hate, especially the Bad Boy (which I'd probably opt for if given 30 seconds to decide with no test ride) and Giant doesn't have Marin's heritage of making really excellent bikes for decades. But what you should really do is test ride and find the one you like.
  • jethro924jethro924 Posts: 49
    Why buy 2?

    But one and spend more money on it!

    Spesh Tricross comes highly recommended in various posts
  • Once again, thanks for the advice.

    I'll see if I can test ride the bikes, although the Marin is looking the best option, considering the price. My old Saracen looks very similar to the one featured in this thread: http://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=31926&sid=763f2ac8e132cc4f4c66c78a996bd34e. And really I'm looking for a similar style bike, that performs better on road.

    One of the reason's it's between those 2 is because I really like the local shop. They're very helpful, but only stock Marin, Cannondale and GT. The Giant is from the other local.

    I'm buying two because one is for my friend. The Tricross looks amazing but £700 may be a bit out of our price range.
  • meanwhilemeanwhile Posts: 392
    whiterhyno wrote:
    Once again, thanks for the advice.

    I'll see if I can test ride the bikes, although the Marin is looking the best option, considering the price.

    I like it even more now that I've found that it's double butted cromo. A cromo Marin is guaranteed to be tough and comfortable.
    I'm buying two because one is for my friend. The Tricross looks amazing but £700 may be a bit out of our price range.

    If you do feel rich, definitely test ride it. Modern Specializeds tend to amazingly harsh rides. The Tricross also lacks disc brakes, which are a very useful safety feature for all weather commuters. Otherwise, a really interesting bike, although if I was spending that much I'd rather have a Cotic Roadrat, Charge Mixer, or Uncle John.
  • That Roadrat looks nice, as does the Charge.

    Test road a few Marin's and Cannondale yesterday and have opted for the Muirwood 29er.

    The geometry was a lot closer to what I prefer and the bigger wheels really seem to make a difference in speed. I didn't like the seat, handlebar grips or pedals but these are easily changed. Hopefully I'll be absolutely knackered tomorrow.
Sign In or Register to comment.