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which bike?

phillyhphillyh Posts: 11
edited March 2009 in Commuting chat
Help, I can't make my mind up what bike to get! I'm after a hybrid with 700c wheels and have looked at Specialized crosstrails, Scott Sportsters, Claud Butler Urbans, Trek FX and Giant CRS ranges.
I'm expecting replies of "It's just personal preference, try them all and pick one." but has anyone got any particularly good or bad things to say about any of them? Or dare I say it...any other suggestions?
Budget around the £500 mark.
Thanks

Posts

  • il_principeil_principe Posts: 9,152
    phillyh wrote:
    Help, I can't make my mind up what bike to get! I'm after a hybrid with 700c wheels and have looked at Specialized crosstrails, Scott Sportsters, Claud Butler Urbans, Trek FX and Giant CRS ranges.
    I'm expecting replies of "It's just personal preference, try them all and pick one." but has anyone got any particularly good or bad things to say about any of them? Or dare I say it...any other suggestions?
    Budget around the £500 mark.
    Thanks

    Well they're all Hybrids and therefore SPAWN OF THE DEVIL. Guess that counts as a bad thing. :shock:

    If you don't want to try them then pick the lightest one. Many hybrids are made out of concrete and pig iron so it's best to save weight where you can. :lol:

    Seriously though - avoid whichever ones come with suspension. You probably won't need it and for the money the above bikes cost the suspension won't be much good anyway.
    2015 Canyon Aeroad CF SLX
    2020 Canyon Ultimate CF SLX
    2020 Canyon Inflite SL 7
    On the Strand
    Crown Stables
  • Philly, welcome.

    Jash, be nice. :lol:

    Philly, how far are you planning to go? Is it hilly? On road? Off road?
  • Thanks for the welcomes...Guess I'll be riding with the devil!

    It'll be a 10 mile road commute...occasionally! Flat as a pancake most of it, well that's Cambs for you. but I want to be able to do the odd trail and forest track here and there!
  • il_principeil_principe Posts: 9,152
    Have you though about cross bikes?

    Ideal for a combo of road and trail: http://www.roadcyclinguk.com/news/article/mps/uan/19
    2015 Canyon Aeroad CF SLX
    2020 Canyon Ultimate CF SLX
    2020 Canyon Inflite SL 7
    On the Strand
    Crown Stables
  • +1 on the cross bikes. A hybrid will be completely useless (I'm reliably informed) on a trail or track.

    Having lived in Cambridge for 5 years I know it's even flatter than London. Have you considered a single speed? I certainly used one when I was there.

    Pearson Cycles have the specialized tricross single speed on special... good for off-roading and a SS for city riding...

    http://www.pearsoncycles.co.uk/product/ ... CROSS_2009
  • Hmmm food for thought. Not sure I could cope with something quite so focussed, maybe if I was buying 2 bikes... Nah, I couldn't justify (or afford) it!
  • What do you mean by 'focussed'?

    I can see your point on the single speed, but a cyclocross bike is perfect if you're mostly on the road and occasionally doing some offroading.

    Why do you like the hybrid? I think they're a safe choice, but don't do anything particularly well. They're a bit rubbish offroad, and a bit less rubbish on road! A mountain bike is best for off road, but hopeless on road...
  • +1 on the cross bikes. A hybrid will be completely useless (I'm reliably informed) on a trail or track.

    Having lived in Cambridge for 5 years I know it's even flatter than London. Have you considered a single speed? I certainly used one when I was there.

    Pearson Cycles have the specialized tricross single speed on special... good for off-roading and a SS for city riding...

    http://www.pearsoncycles.co.uk/product/ ... CROSS_2009

    +1. I started with Spesh bikes and they were excellent.
  • I have a scott speedster s30 fb 2008 hybrid which is towards the road end of the hybrid spectrum i guess. With hindsight I would have looked at the cross bikes but I have done about 1500 miles on mine since i got it last year and quite happy with it. I hadn't cycled for about 25 years and wasn't sure about jumping straight to a road bike.

    Next bike purchase will be a road bike and i'll keep the hybrid for winter
    FCN 8

    Scott Speedster S30 FB hybrid
  • biondinobiondino Posts: 5,990
    +1 on the cross bikes. A hybrid will be completely useless (I'm reliably informed) on a trail or track.

    Agreed. If the track you're talking about is, say a gravel or packed earth canal path, then a hybrid is fine. Anything that can remotely be classed as "off road" a hybrid will fail completely. A cross bike works both on road and off because it's a) light enough and sporty enough for the off-road concessions (mainly the knobblier tyres) to detract little from your road experience, but the same off road concessions make dirt track and trails very doable - and on a much lighter bike into the bargain.

    Your concerns are understandable, but the popul;arity of hybrids is mostly based on people's lack of knowledge or fear of anything that sounds a bit extreme. For pootling around on urban roads, a hybrid can be fine, but it's not much of a leisure bike for road rides, it's useless off-road, and more than anything there will almost always be a better alternative if you do research, know what you want it for and are able to go for test rides.
  • akcc05akcc05 Posts: 336
    Have you looked at the Specialized Sirrus? The 09 Sirrus has really slack geometry which is pretty much good for nothing...
    but if you can find a 08 Sirrus (cheaper too), it's a gem, it comes standard with 28c (skinny-ish) road tyres but has the clearance for fatter cross tyres if you want to turn it into a flat bar cross bike (also flip the stem). It also has the usual racks and mubguard eyelets so it's a bit of an SUV in cycling sense.
  • MrChuckMrChuck Posts: 1,663
    I have a Trek 7500 FX (few years old now) and have been very happy with it, although it is a bit heavy. I think people are a bit hard on hybrids on here, and although biondino makes a good point about them being the safe option for a lot of people I wouldn't write them off if you can find a nice light one.

    That said, if I was buying now I'd probably look at a crosser.
  • MrChuck wrote:
    ... I think people are a bit hard on hybrids on here, and although biondino makes a good point about them being the safe option for a lot of people I wouldn't write them off if you can find a nice light one.

    That said, if I was buying now I'd probably look at a crosser....

    I think the reason why people are hard on hybrids here is as you say and as others say above - they're the choice which you make because you're ill informed, or looking for a safe option.

    It's really just a matter of time before you get rid of it and buy something better, or realise you'd have bought something different if you could have the chance again.

    We're trying to get people past this first step onto something that does what they want it to well, and save you regretting your choice when you realise it was not ideal!!

    A lot of the people on here have learnt this lesson the more expensive way!
  • Just to make things even more complicated, for £500 you could get a tourer like the Dawes Horizon or Ridgeback Voyage, or an Audax bike like ones from Ribble or Dawes.
  • I like the look of those urban hybrid things...such as the Boardman hybrids. Yes, they're flat barred. Yes, they would be useless offroad. However, they're lightweight, equipped with disc brakes and I think I'd enjoy riding one around town.....until it got stolen for looking too bling. I have no reason to buy one, but would like to buy one. Have I made sense here?!

    Could be worth considering....there's hybrids and there's hybrids.
  • rally200rally200 Posts: 646
    I have a CRS - it's OK, but just OK , thats about as good as hybrids get. I bought it not really knowing whatI wanted but, thinking I would use it on lightoff-road trails as part of my commute. I now think a hybrid is probably one of the least flexible types of bike - you can commute on a road bike or a MTB but can't realistically use the hybrid for anything other than v.short commutes. I've since bought a road bike, but still use the CRS for wet weather commuting, or load carrying - which is nice as I don't have to sully the road bike with racks or mudguards. I'd go along with most opinion on here & suggest a crossbike if yoou want one bike to do everything.

    Even though you're in te flatlands,the fixed upright position of a hybrid could make your 10 mile commute a bit of grind in a headwind/
  • I have a kona dew de-lux which I ride on the country roads around here as I find the more upright position ( than a road bike ) more comfortable & I like to take in the scenery, but I wouldn't go off road with it as the forks are rigid & the tyres too narrow.

    For offroad I have my Giant Terrago
    ' From the sharks in the penthouse,
    to the rats in the basement,
    its not that far '
  • akcc05akcc05 Posts: 336
    I am actutally quite fond of my XT/Tiagra/105 flat bar Sirrus, even more so than my SS and my Ultegra equiped road bike. I think that's because I spend more time commuting on it than I do on my other bikes. It seems more relaxed and I get this sense of adventure as I listen to the sound of the tyres rolling on smooth tarmac. I even like to listen to the sound of the cup and cone front hub spinning when I wash/relube my Sirrus after wet rides/commutes.

    So, although a lot of us on here regret the purchase of a hybrid, some people will find hybirds more lovable. That said, I have never had a cross bike.
  • MrChuckMrChuck Posts: 1,663
    MrChuck wrote:
    ... I think people are a bit hard on hybrids on here, and although biondino makes a good point about them being the safe option for a lot of people I wouldn't write them off if you can find a nice light one.

    That said, if I was buying now I'd probably look at a crosser....

    I think the reason why people are hard on hybrids here is as you say and as others say above - they're the choice which you make because you're ill informed, or looking for a safe option.

    It's really just a matter of time before you get rid of it and buy something better, or realise you'd have bought something different if you could have the chance again.

    We're trying to get people past this first step onto something that does what they want it to well, and save you regretting your choice when you realise it was not ideal!!

    A lot of the people on here have learnt this lesson the more expensive way!

    I don't know about ill-informed, but I guess there are other factors at play. When I got mine it was in the knowledge that a road bike would be added to the stable fairly soon, so it didn't matter too much that it wasn't the best for long rides (although I've done 50 miles on it with no problems). Also cross bikes weren't quite as mainstream as they are now so there wasn't much choice (for my budget).

    Still, I'd much rather do my commute and general getting around on my hybrid than either my road or mountain bike. So there. :P
  • I've just done this (but my budget was less).

    I bought a Specialized vita. Its miles better and faster than my old much more upright Ridgeback (it's also got gears that work which helps). I ride primarily on city roads, I also use a designated asphalted bike track and have delusions about cycling along the canal. So far the bike has been on road and it was great. Cobbles a bit bumpy but liveable with.

    I also wanted to trial a Giant FCR but the LBS which sells Giants insisted on trying to sell me a proper hybrid (CRS?) so I gave up trying to get out on one to try it.

    The other one to think about (which would give you lots of change) is the Revolution Courier Race. Only got 8 gears but it rides pretty well. I couldn't get a good fit on it though and the woman's one only comes with 26" wheels.
  • LysanderLysander Posts: 349
    jashburnham your Prince is beautiful! What sort of wheels do you fitted?
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