First trip to Evans tomorrow

gingernash Posts: 123
edited September 2010 in Road buying advice
Hello all,

Thanks for the responses to my post earlier in the week in relation to whether I should go for a £1000ish first bike.

I have decided to go with the majority of advice received and aim for something about £600ish. Number of factors:

- Have not used clipless before so likely to have a few accidents.

- Might not be able to carve enough time to ride as much as I would like.

- I live in Central London (but am looking to ride out and about on weekends) so don't really want a grand's worth of bike being lifted.

Have spent a while clicking through Evans' website (have decided to go to a proper shop to get advice and did not fancy running the gauntlet with Halfords) and have seen some nice bikes at the £600ish range, especially as they have a good sale on at the moment.

Likely to be Trek 1.2, Spec Allez, Spec Secteur or Cannondale CAAD 8.

Despite my clicking around, I cannot seem to work out what is the difference between the Allez and Secteur - can anyone give me quick answer?

Plus, I was advised earlier in the week to go for double side MTB clipless. Is it risky to go straight for SPD? Or can you get MTB SPD? (Apologies if I have got that all wrong!)


  • giant_man
    giant_man Posts: 6,878
    Don't get too excited mate, it's only a bike shop ......
  • Allez is the cheaper version of the Tarmac so it has more on an efficient 'racy' position. Secteur is the cheaper version of the Roubaix so a slightly more relaxed, upright riding position.

    Unless you have problems with your back I'd say go for the Allez.

    AS for the pedals, SPD is the double sided 'MTB' style pedal. SPD-SL is the single sided road pedal. You'd be fine with either but if commuting the SPDs might be better as the cleat is usually recessed into the sole of the shoe so a bit better if you need to get off and walk.

    Bear in mind that SPD and SPD-SL are Shimano terms that have kinda become used to describe all pedals (a bit like Hoover) so other brands use different terms.

    Invest in some better tires (ask if the shop will discount them if you buy at the same time as the bike) as Specialized stock ones aren't really up to commuting in London you'll get punctures. I'd recommend the Specialized Armadillo All Condition 700x23 or 25 (not much difference so whatever they have). They might be a little heavy and not necessarily give the best ride but their puncture resistance is among the best.

    And finally, Evans get a lot of bad press, mostly because they're a big company and as such there are always going to be some problems with customer service however this also means you don't have to feel bad about screwing them for whatever you can. You will get some kind of discount off the displayed price if you're persistent enough. Try for at least 10% off everything or failing that 10% of whatever you spend in free accessories.
  • You can also get a double sided pedal, which has SPD on one side, and a platform on the other - can be a help if you are not too confident, and can also be useful riding through town, to save clipping and unclipping all the time
  • I'm in a similar situation gingernash. Looking for a first road bike. I went to Evans in Milton Keynes recently and wasn't impressed. They only had a fraction of what was on the web site in stock. I was specifically interested in Specialised. They said they could order one in but that I'd have to pay a £50 deposit. Refundable if I didn't like the bike.
    The assistant was only marginally more knowledgeable than me.

    I left.

    Watch out for their 'discount' as well. I saw the same bike on other sites at exactly the same price.
  • Its fair enough to put a deposit down on a bike, its means your more likely to come back and look at it, and not just forget it if you find a different bike elsewhere

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