Forum home Road cycling forum Road beginners

Do i go the whole way?

daveclowdaveclow Posts: 164
edited May 2009 in Road beginners
Hello, new member to the forum as of 25 mins ago, its great here!

Rowing is my sport - and have started competing this season, its alot of training! so i've decided to splash out on a bike as its a good cross-over sport for my rowing. i originally starting looking at hybrid bikes to commute to work on - its 9 mile each way. But the more i look the more i think that maybe i should go for it and get a proper racer!!! other than the commute i'd use it for bike rides with the mrs lol and some training over the summer.

i need some advice to help me decide whether or not to go racer or hybrid? are the racers quite unforgiving in comparison? much different to ride than a hybrid? ive only ever ridden a mountain bike.

ive had my eyes on a boardman hybrid for 500 nicker. Any decent racers available for the same money?

thanks

dave.
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Posts

  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,426
    I've got the Boardman Road Comp it's great. I come from a canoeing and MTB background and I bought it for commuting. It took a couple of days to get used the the road bike position but now I love it, it's fast and comfy even though the roads are shocking.

    I say go for the full fat racer if you're already thinking about it you'll end up buying one anyway! 8)

    For about £500 you've got the Boardman Road Comp, Specialized Allez, Giant Defy amongst others.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
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  • kingrollokingrollo Posts: 3,163
    Go all the way - you won't use the drops very often - but at least they are there - and the bikes look better to !
  • JGSJGS Posts: 180
    If you look out for road bikes with "comfort" or "relaxed" geometry you'll get the benifit of the higher speed of a road bike, but without the back breaking "full-on" race feeling.
  • daveclowdaveclow Posts: 164
    cheers guys, i think ill probably go full fat!

    my local outlet can get hold of a trek 1.5 triple for £595

    or a Claud butler Milano for £450

    i understant both of these prices are good as he gets them in to order. any recommendations for a beginner? albeit a keen one :) do you get bags more for the £150 extra???
  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,674
    daveclow wrote:
    cheers guys, i think ill probably go full fat!

    my local outlet can get hold of a trek 1.5 triple for £595

    or a Claud butler Milano for £450

    i understant both of these prices are good as he gets them in to order. any recommendations for a beginner? albeit a keen one :) do you get bags more for the £150 extra???

    Dave, you've got to watch out - you can always get more if you pay more, whether you're jumping from £400 to £500, £500 to £600, or £4000 to £5000. Before you know it you're spending twice what you first planned...
    But I have to say, as someone with a scientific background, I'd love to see any evidence at all showing clearly how much faster you go per £ extra spent. And yes, that is a challenge to anyone who can produce such evidence - even anecdotal evidence seems to be incredibly rare!
    I suspect that both those who sell expensive bikes, and those who buy them, wouldn't be that keen - how would you feel if you'd just spent thousands on a bike only to discover that it doesn't go any faster than something at a fraction of the price?
  • Stewie GriffinStewie Griffin Posts: 4,330
    Go for a compact* chainset rather than a triple. Unless of course you live in a particularly bumpy part of the World.

    Compact is a 50/34 set up on the front 2 rings rather than 53/39 that big boys use.

    Quick edit; I use a compact, as do I guess a large percentage of folk on here.
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    Definately a road bike.

    I had a hybrid for a year to commute on and recently got a proper road bike, and wished I had a year before.

    In terms of more expensive bikes being faster, then they are a little lighter, but how much effect this will have for me is questionable.

    I would say however that after trying a few bikes out before buying my current one, the more expensive ones definately seem to ride "nicer". Changes crisper ,more confortable and responsive ride. That could just be subjective though knowing I had a more expensive bike betwwn my legs. :lol:
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • HeadhuunterHeadhuunter Posts: 6,494
    Don't call them racers, it's road bike. Racer is oh so Raleigh from Halfords for Christmas from mum and dad a la 1977....
    Do not write below this line. Office use only.
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    bompington wrote:
    But I have to say, as someone with a scientific background, I'd love to see any evidence at all showing clearly how much faster you go per £ extra spent. And yes, that is a challenge to anyone who can produce such evidence - even anecdotal evidence seems to be incredibly rare!

    But this is what we used to do with hi-fi. For £500 or whatever you'd get something listenable, for twice the money it might be twice as good, but the laws of diminishing returns tells us that subsequent doublings of the outlay from say £2000 to £4000 wouldn't return a two-fold increase in the [subjective] quality. You just end up spending more for smaller & smaller improvements. Same with or bikes, and some of it at least is in the mind, knowing that the expensive kit must be better, so it is.

    Oddly, bikes fall into the same price bands as hi-fi used to, almost as if the marketing johnies have worked out the disposable income bands and what fits where. Fancy that.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I have a colleague with a £60k Hi-Fi. Probably sounds better to me than it does to him since he appears to be going deaf in one ear. Mind you, he'd be censored on a bike.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Odd you mention HiFi, I have a pretty high end Hifi and a similar penchant for bikes... I really notice the law of diminishing returns in both, that said, it's worth it to me. The Hifi was more than the bikes and cars combined. The bikes are worth more than both cars combined :O

    By the way, with the bike, my expensive one is faster uphill because it is 10lbs lighter.

    However, the main reason I have a fancy bike is for the tarty bling and comfort.

    That said, I've just been discussing my next build with the LBS. Hope the Mrs doesn't find out.

    I'd get a road bike rather than a hybrid by the way, to get back on topic.
  • Eau RougeEau Rouge Posts: 1,118
    I had the use of an aluminium bike that cost about £400 for the past few months, and for a few days I've got a borrowed uber-bike that would cost about 10 times that.

    The uber-bike isn't 10 times better, but is it better. It goes up any sort of rise in the road easier, the more of a hill the better the improvment. It's a lot smoother and more comfortable to ride, with the harsh road surface well and truely damped, yet it accelerates a lot better. It has an amazing ability to maintain momentum.
    It's still a bike though, and while I'm a little faster on it, it's not exactly night and day. I still need to power it, hills are easier, but they are still hills, etc

    So for 10 times the price you get a better bike, but as ChrisInBicester says, the laws of diminishing returns have definitely kicked in at that point.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    I think the sweet spot with bikes are those with good carbon frames and Ultegra / Rival (although I think that Rival is probably better than Ultegra) / Centaur level groups. About 1.5 - 2k basically for a full build.

    You have reasonable weight and great quality shifting without being too expensive.
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    +1 for the law of diminishing returns.

    The irony is that by the time I could afford a throughbred racing machine or an audiophile hi-fi my physique / ears were shot enough to not warrant that top level spend.

    How much maintenance is a carbon bike with Ultegra / Rival / Centaur gonna cost a year for a regular commuter?
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    I use one (Full Ultegra) for regular commuting, I haven't spent anything other than new innertubes / chain in the time.... No problems at all.
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    I use one (Full Ultegra) for regular commuting, I haven't spent anything other than new innertubes / chain in the time.... No problems at all.

    How long have you ridden it for - my road bike has full 105, so am interested in longevity of Shimano Groupsets.

    Managed to do 1 cassette and 2 chains in a year on my old Hybrid...
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • guillianoguilliano Posts: 5,495
    I'd opt for the road bike as well..... and not just cos I have one. The fact that you have a variety of comfortable hand positions is a big help if you are going out on training rides, and they allow you to stretch out more on climbs which makes hills easier. The only downside is that the law says you have to wear lycra
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Done about 8k miles in 14 months on it. (It's not my only bike...)

    Ridden in all weathers.

    Just remembered a cable change after it's second winter. Didn't really need it but I was changing frames...
  • REF123REF123 Posts: 13
    If you're on the fence w Hybrid on one side and Road Bike on the other I'd go for a CX bike.
    You can go anywhere on them in any weather, they're built like tanks, yet light, and the price is right.
    You've still got the drops when you need them and a second set of brakes up on the flat section.
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    Done about 8k miles in 14 months on it. (It's not my only bike...)

    Thanks v much for that. NapoleonD
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • nasahapleynasahapley Posts: 717
    blu3cat wrote:
    How much maintenance is a carbon bike with Ultegra / Rival / Centaur gonna cost a year for a regular commuter?

    I can second what ND said; I use my full carbon ultegra shod bike for all my riding in all weathers (it is my only bike), and in almost two years, including two winters, the bits that have needed changing are:

    Chain
    2 x tyres
    inner tubes
    2 x cables
    brake blocks

    so well under £100 worth, and really just stuff that you'd have to change on any bike anyway. Tbh if you come to the road forum and ask whether to get a road bike or anything else, the only answer you're going to get is 'road bike'! It is the right one though.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Tis a pleasure, it is still going very strong indeed!

    It still shifts brilliantly, in fact I have not noticed any decline in the performance of any of it.

    One day I may even change the brake blocks...
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    The only downside is that the law says you have to wear lycra

    nonsense baggies and road bikes work, sort of, honest......

    I think lycra is only mandatory if you are either stick thin or more than a little portly. :shock:
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Yeah - here is me in my Lampre team kit, I was 90kg at the time of the accident 6 weeks ago, I seem to have added a little round the middle with being off the bike but it still looks fine.























































    fatguyinspandex.jpg
  • weedy1weedy1 Posts: 143
    He'd still beat me up a hill
    lololololololololololololololololololololol
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    And here is the king of the Freds - The Lance Fanboy version -

    DiscoFredtext.jpg
  • blu3catblu3cat Posts: 1,016
    mmmmmmmm, lovely piccies. good job I ate much earlier.
    "Bed is for sleepy people.
    Let's get a kebab and go to a disco."

    FCN = 3 - 5
    Colnago World Cup 2
  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,674
    NapoleonD, you obviously don't cycle round here - my brake blocks last less than 1k...
  • daveclowdaveclow Posts: 164
    thanks very much, a fantastic response!!!! and forum.

    ive decided to go road!

    ill be a regular contributor and visitor to the site.


    Cheers!
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Well done there Dave, good man.

    Bompington, my 18.5 mile each way commute involves 3 roundabouts, 3 sets of lights and 1 junction. It is mosty country roads, work is on the very southern tip of Manc. I am a very lucky commuter indeed! Hence the lack of brake block replacement.
    Last time I needed heavy braking I just used my leg. Which in turn resulted in heavy breaking of said leg :(

    Dave, I look forward to seeing pics of your bike!
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