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What makes a good road bike?

Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
edited March 2011 in Road beginners
Hello all.

Due to the soaring fuel prices, I've been thinking of cycling to work.
I only have a MTB atm, and would like to keep it deadicated as a off-road XC.

So been swinging towards the idea of getting a road bike.

The commute is along a main A-Road, with the average speed of 50mph. So i don't want gearing thats going to make me a slow rider.

It's approx 10 miles there, and 10 miles back, so 20 miles in total.

Would like something that is going to be faster than my mountain bike, as I don't fancy the hour it'll take me to get into work on my MTB.

Any advice is welcome, but although I am ok atm MTB stuff, I'm still wet behind the ears with all this.

Thanks.
White Bikes, make the best bikes.

2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
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Posts

  • Berk BonebonceBerk Bonebonce Posts: 1,245
    1/ Full length mudguards. You will come to love these.
    2/ A rack and panniers, assuming you have to take stuff to and from work.
  • Peddle Up!Peddle Up! Posts: 2,040
    Decent hybrid? What's your budget?
    Purveyor of "up" :)
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    Not really sure on a budget tbh.
    As I'd like a deadicated road bike.

    As for carring stuff, I have a bag for that.
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • ValyValy Posts: 1,321
    Howdy,

    First of all - what kind of money are you looking to spend?

    Generally the lighter stiffer and more compliant the better. At about £400-£500 is the entry range. Will get you around certainly. It will also feel more nible that your MTB.

    How much faster it will be is difficult to say. It depends on how fit you are, whether you hgave slicks on your MTB and how upright you sit.
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    There are some superb details on 2010 model bikes at the moment. Type CAAD8 into google and press the "Shopping" sidebar and you'll see Cannondales from 449! 2011 model is about double that price I think. Same for things like Specialized Secteurs. At that sort of money even a good second hand bike doesn't seem so cheap.

    You can fit race blade style mudguards to any bike and it's well worth doing.
    http://www.strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • I'd get a nice road bike, not hybrid.
    Rucksacks are fine but a lot of people find they get uncomfortable after a while. Sweaty back no good.
    So maybe don't rule out the pannier idea?
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    I'd get a nice road bike, not hybrid.
    Rucksacks are fine but a lot of people find they get uncomfortable after a while. Sweaty back no good.
    So maybe don't rule out the pannier idea?

    Yeh thats what I'm aiming for, a nice decent road deadicated road bike.
    I've got a XC bike, so when I want to go off-road, I will and can :)

    As for the rucksack... all I need is my lunch...
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • edited March 2011
    Dog296, what road bike we can suggest depends on your budget, if you don't give us a scope we can't really point you in the right direction.

    Half decent entry level bikes start at ~£500
    (Numbered generic low end gearing/chainsets etc & might possibly squeeze in carbon forks if you are lucky.)

    Mid level is ~£1000
    (Higher named components, carbon forks/rear stays and more than capable of doing what you want and probably a lot more) - This is where I would say you may be best served for your needs and possible upgrades in how much you ride it.

    After £1500 you are looking at decent entry level carbon frames
    (Full carbon or Ti, higher end or mid level components and lighter than the previous above but possibly overkill for a commuter unless you get bitten by the bug and become more of a roadie.)

    Beyond 2 grand is well outside my area so I shall leave thatf or others to wade in, if required.

    Hope that helps get the ball rolling properly now. (:
  • R8JimBob88R8JimBob88 Posts: 285
    Ive been commuting on a 2010 Specialized Allez. £500 new but can be had for under £400 now, probably less second hand.

    Cracking bike 8)

    Just be aware that you will be soon converted into a full time roadie
    If you do what you have always done, you will get what you always got....
  • Mister WMister W Posts: 791
    The bike's gearing won't make you slow (or fast). It's your legs that do that.

    Are you intending to ride every day, in all weathers? If you are then full length mudguards are a good idea. Something low maintenance is also a good idea, unless you want to spend every weekend cleaning and maintaining it. However, few road bikes fall into that category. The lowest maintenance bike I own is a hybrid with disk brakes and hub gears. It's not cool or stylish but it's comfortable, quick enough and needs nothing more than the occasional drop of oil on the chain.
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    Well Sub £500 would be nice, cheaper the better tbh.
    But I want a decent one for that price.

    Full time roadie? I think not, I love XC far too much, I just wanted something else other than having to swap wheels and tyres on my GT to go road 5 times a week.

    I'd rather have a deadicated road bike for work, and my GT as a play toy at weekends.

    Seen some barracuda stuff around the web fairly, their stuff any good?
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • Sub 500, eBay and second hand then, mooch about and see what is around to be had, then post links here and see what peoples verdict is.
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    Seen some barracuda stuff around the web fairly, their stuff any good?

    Not the lightest bikes on the market, a bit basic. If you're spending under 500 that Cannondale CAAD8 I mentioned above or a Specialized Secteur / Allez would be my choice. They both have decent frames that are worth upgrading over time.
    http://www.strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • rakerake Posts: 3,204
    something with and aluminium frame, enough clearance for mudguards between frame and tyres, a lot of frames are quite tight and will hinder this. also look for a frame with eyelets to attach them. the next thing is wheels. id go for 32 spoke cross three to be upto the general pot holed reliable commute. you want reliability the order of the day, so dont look for very light weight (and very expensive) stuff. the speed difference of a few pounds is negligable in this capacity. tyres, for reliability again money well spent on decent tyres. not lightweight race tyres but good puncture resistance training/touring tyres. also 25mm rear and 23mm front gives a very good durable comfortable balannce, again you need the clearance for this when running mudguards. gearing, good value sora or tiagra would be my bet- reliable/works well and doesnt cost the earth. to give an idea my sora equipped bike 9 years old still works fine after thousands of miles. slightly wider chains of 8 or 9 speed are probable beneficial for every day use.
  • FenredFenred Posts: 428
    One that when you look at it.....You cant wait to ride it!!!
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    I really like the spesh Allez! Really really like tbh.
    Seen a few of the cannondale's about, seem good value!
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • Dog296 wrote:

    Full time roadie? I think not, I love XC far too much

    Ok we'll see what you say in a few months time :wink::D
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    Need to get a road bike first.

    Think I'm going to see what's around after may. I should have some pennies then.
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    Just had a look at pricing on Allezs myself out of curiosity. An awful lot of folk are still selling the 8 speed version, be sure to get the newer 9 speed as 8 speed is old technology now and you'll kick yourself later. I'm a Cannondale man myself but I must admit I prefer the look of the Allez to the CAAD8, it's a nice bike. That said I think you get more for your money and a better frame with the CAAD8. Frankly both are good, it's hard to go wrong.
    Full time roadie? I think not, I love XC far too much

    Care put your money where your mouth is? :twisted: Only joking.
    http://www.strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • furragfurrag Posts: 481
    A pair of tits on the handlebars.
  • Dog296Dog296 Posts: 84
    A pair of tits...
    There are plenty of tits behind the wheels of cars, I don't fancy any on my bike lol!

    Tbh, What I'll get will depend on price. But it'll either be a Allez or a CAAD8 :)
    White Bikes, make the best bikes.

    2011 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro!
  • meanredspidermeanredspider Posts: 12,337
    If you're only taking your lunch, a belt bag is a great compromise. I have an Innov-8 one from Wiggle that would easily swallow all but the greediest person's lunch and has side pockets for spare inners, tools etc - and keeps my back and shoulders entirely free. Once I've put it on, I'm really not aware of it. It doubles as a water carrier for your XC days.

    As for mud gurards, again, I steer a slightly different line from most. After experimenting with various full-size ones and being irritated by them, I just have a rear Zefal swan guards (similar to the crud catcher thing but designed for road bikes) that works brilliantly to keep my censored and back dry. The beauty of it is that it's removeable in 5 secs. This is especially helpful if I want to remove the wheels from my bike and sling it in the boot of my car (in fact I just rotate it forward for that). It attaches to the seat post so no need for mounting points or silly rubber bands to hold it in place.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • secretsqizzsecretsqizz Posts: 424
    Peddle Up! wrote:
    Decent hybrid? What's your budget?

    unbeliever... get out of the roadie section with you..
    you'll end up fatwahed
    My pen won't write on the screen
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    Good advice so far (I expect. Haven't read all the thread).

    I'd suggest you post a similar thread over in Commuting Chat - you'll get a lot of sage advice, and be told firmly not to bother with a hybrid. It's all or nothing over there. :)

    Try this for a kick-off.

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/viewtop ... t=12760848
  • rolf_frolf_f Posts: 16,015
    After £1500 you are looking at decent entry level carbon frames

    Make that £900 for decent entry level carbon framed bikes. Otherwise you dismiss Planet X and Ribble which really do deliver very good Carbon framed bikes from about that price level.
    Faster than a tent.......
  • crazy88crazy88 Posts: 560
    Don't worry mate, you'll be safe with your XC hobby. I commute to work on a road bike (with flat bars) and still prefer the mtb'ing...a lot more. Sure, it's fun going to work on the road bike, but it's still not the same fun as flying through the woods and over jumps etc.

    As for what to buy, i'll leave others to give advice there. However, I have never bothered with mud guards of any description. If it's raining I just slap the waterproof trousers on as I go to work, and on the way home I just get soaked, it's all the more fun.
    Out with the old, in with the new here.
  • paully617paully617 Posts: 139
    I am in exactly the same boat mate!!!
    I am now stuck between:
    Trek pilot 2.0 at 575,
    The cannondale caad 8 at 430
    And the bianchi via nerone sora.

    I normally ride xc/all mountain stuff and have never ridden a road bike. My work place is 18 miles each way so should be uber fit in no time!!!

    I have asked loads of roadies for their opinions and am still confused!

    Can anyone suggest a good one from my shortlist??
    Trek Remedy 9.8 2013
  • paully617
    Thats a good price on the Cannondale (if you can get hold of one)
    Nowt wrong with the other two, how much is the Via Nirone?
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
  • paully617paully617 Posts: 139
    About 550
    Trek Remedy 9.8 2013
  • paully617
    My personal opinion would be to get the caad8 and then save the money you have left for accessories.
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
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