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Road v Mountain Bike?

bikerbartbikerbart Posts: 42
edited April 2011 in Road beginners
I've started doing a bit of road riding after starting mountain biking last year at the age of 50. I'm using a mountain bike with 26" wheels which I have put some road tyres on. A proper road bike has bigger wheels, thinner tyres & higher gears. Would this make a noticable difference to me? I can manage about 30 mile trips at the moment, hopefully this will improve the more I do

Posts

  • crakercraker Posts: 2,060
    Big gears are only any good if you can get up to the right speed to push them. Thin tires pumped up hard make a heck of a difference though, as does the lighter frame of a road bike. My 35 min road commute takes 45 on a MTB with slicks for example.

    If you want to go further then a road bike is definitely the way to go.
  • mattshropsmattshrops Posts: 1,158
    you will notice the difference. also as you go further this is even more noticeable 8)
    Death or Glory- Just another Story
  • danowatdanowat Posts: 2,877
    Will it make a difference?, hell yes.
  • Peddle Up!Peddle Up! Posts: 2,040
    Yep!
    Purveyor of "up" :)
  • Bikerbart, like you I'm erm.. old and was riding my MTB on the road all through winter, and basically getting nowhere fast. I borrowed a friend's road bike for an afternoon and we rode the same route as I would on my MTB. Th main difference being more reward for less perceived effort.

    A week later I was on a Specialized Roubaix.Who needs new kitchens anyway
    Live to ski
    Ski to live
  • mattshropsmattshrops Posts: 1,158
    Bikerbart, like you I'm erm.. old and was riding my MTB on the road all through winter, and basically getting nowhere fast. I borrowed a friend's road bike for an afternoon and we rode the same route as I would on my MTB. Th main difference being more reward for less perceived effort.

    A week later I was on a Specialized Roubaix.Who needs new kitchens anyway

    correct. when was the last time you heard of someone setting a new pb on a granite worktop. priorities thats the secret
    Death or Glory- Just another Story
  • lemoncurdlemoncurd Posts: 1,428
    It will make a difference but not as much as might think, my mountain bike with slicks is not really that much slower over 30 miles than my road bike and they are worlds apart in price / weight.

    http://www.bikeradar.com/news/article/mountain-biker-wins-road-race-on-his-hardtail-22736/
  • Buckled_RimsBuckled_Rims Posts: 1,648
    My old commute had an average round trip time of 61 minutes on my old MTB with slicks. My CX bike with 25mm tyres can do it in 58 minutes despite the fact I'm almost 2 stone lighter and much stronger then the MTB commuting days.

    The real difference comes in my pure road bike when I can easily do a 60 mile run on a Sunday morning. I'd be shattered doing 30 miles on the MTB.

    The biggest difference is in body position. A road bike has an efficient pedalling position, while the MTB is more like sitting slab upright.
    CAAD9
    Kona Jake the Snake
    Merlin Malt 4
  • Road bike.
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
  • twotyredtwotyred Posts: 822
    When I switched from a hardtail with slicks to a road bike I was an average 10% faster on my regular commute.
  • pawlopawlo Posts: 22
    I started cycling again 3 years ago on a mountainbike, I did 12 months before i realized I hadn't gone down a single dirt track, not one field no woods - in fact the only place the bike had been remotely off-road was the drive way to my house, sick of being over taken by roadies as well I got a Specialized Allez. I haven't missed the mountain bike one bit but it depends on where you do your cycling, if the woods dont come in to it then Its called a 'road bike' for a reason, they are simply better on the road.
  • DCowlingDCowling Posts: 769
    Hi
    I am 41 and just got back into cycling last year when I quit the ciggies and I started on a borrowed mountain bike and the furthest I got was a 50 but it was hard work, so I recently managed to get myself a roadbike , and the difference in effort required is amazing, especially as I was on a full suspension bike and I could feel my effort being wasted , as it was absorbed by the suspension. I can now do 30 with about 60% of the effort that was needed to do it on the MTB.
    I find the biggest difference is maintaining the rolling speed, on a mtb, even with slicks, you have to work that bit harder in comparrison to the skinny wheels on a road bike.
    Having said that, I still enjoy riding the mtb as it is a more relaxed riding position and if not for the bike I would have missed about 3 weeks riding in the snow, as it was I did not missed a single weekend. I do not ride competativley, it's more a enjoyment / exercise / fitness thing for me.
  • NavrigNavrig Posts: 1,352
    Depends what you want to do.

    Get fit with less time spent in the saddle?- stick with the MTB and put the knobblies back on.

    Travel further or soend longer in the saddle? - Get a road bike.

    At the age of 45 I was using my MTB on the road with knobblies but soon got board with the limityed road routes I could use. So I got a road bike and love it now.
  • DmakDmak Posts: 445
    Treat yourself. Get a machine that is designed for the job. You will love it!

    A touring bike would offer a fairly relaxed riding position. If you're feeling a bit racier and a bit more flush then maybe something like a Specialized Roubaix would be a good option. It's designed to soften harsh surfaces. Perfect for our abysmal roads and a mature body.

    To go the whole hog I recommend a professional fitting, not that I've had one yet but it's on the list. The bike gets fitted to you, some parts may need replacing but the end result is a more comfortable riding experience and a reduced likelihood of strain injuries.

    Buying new is not compulsory, there are tons good bikes for sale on websites like ebay and gumtree, keep a look out for bargains.

    The summer awaits, don't hang about! :D
  • bikerbartbikerbart Posts: 42
    Thanks to all for the advice. looks like I might have to raid the piggy bank again. Best nip round the flower shop before the wife gets home :wink:
  • I'd definitely go for a road bike as I've recently done the same. I work abroad week on, week off and on my working week (we work nights) there are a few of us who go out mountain biking together ( I thought Belgium was flat but its not!!).
    Anyway, I wanted a road bike for the week at home as there is nowhere close to ride off road and no-one to go with and in January I finally got one and the difference is massive.
    There is so little rolling resistance you know you're going a lot faster for a lot less effort. A lot of places have sales on if you buy new - I got a 2010 Cube off Chain Reaction for almost half price.
    I'm mid 40's and nowhere near being a good cyclist but I've seen improvement in the past 2 months and I'm loving it. Done 3 rides this week on the roads, 35Km, 50Km and 48Km so I think I'm hooked
    We don't stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing

    Giant VT 2
    Cube Aerial
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