Forum home Road cycling forum Road beginners

Very beginners question - Road/Triathlon bikes

Hidden HippoHidden Hippo Posts: 79
edited July 2012 in Road beginners
This will probably seem a very beginner question, but what is the difference between a TT bike and a Road bike?

I need to set myself a new challenge, and I've done a half marathon before, enjoy cycling and swimming is great exercise, so I'm thinking that a triathlon might be fun/a good challenge. However, my mountain bike definitely won't be suitable for it.

Thanks in advance.

Posts

  • siamonsiamon Posts: 274
    People do tri's on all sorts. MTB's, happy shoppers the lot. You will just be applauded for making it harder than it needs to be.
  • alihisgreatalihisgreat Posts: 3,872
    This will probably seem a very beginner question, but what is the difference between a TT bike and a Road bike?

    I need to set myself a new challenge, and I've done a half marathon before, enjoy cycling and swimming is great exercise, so I'm thinking that a triathlon might be fun/a good challenge. However, my mountain bike definitely won't be suitable for it.

    Thanks in advance.

    http://www.beginnertriathlete.com/cms/article-detail.asp?articleid=938
    http://www.bikesportmichigan.com/bikes/difference.shtml
    http://www.trinewbies.com/tno_cycling/tno_cyclearticle_02.asp
    http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/triathlete/triathlon-bike/qa-whats-the-difference-between-a-triathlon-bike-and-a-road-bike/6712.html

    Google is your friend.
  • MichaelWMichaelW Posts: 2,226
    Tri bikes are time trial road bikes for athletes who are not very good at cycling.
    Cyclists who grew up on a bike have adapted to the low riding position of a TT.
    Runners and swimmers cant just get low and remain efficient. To make the best use of their non-cycling muscles, they need a more open hip. Usually, when you open the hip, you raise the body and become less aero. Tri bikes permit an open hip and a flat back and achieve this by rotating the whole riding position forward about the bottom bracket, then supporting the rider's weight on aerobars. This requires a more stable steering geometry.
    Road TT and std stage bikes have their geometry limited by UCI regulations.
  • ThatBikeGuyThatBikeGuy Posts: 394
    If you're thinking of doing triathlons then just buy a road bike and put a pair of tri-bars on the front. As for the differences just google a tt bike and a road bike they generally do look a lot different barring the "aero" road bikes that are becoming more popular.
    Cannondale SS Evo Team
    Kona Jake CX
    Cervelo P5
  • Simon MastersonSimon Masterson Posts: 2,740
    Triathlon bikes tend to look similar, but they aren't the same as Time Trial bikes. I'll leave that for someone else to comment on.

    Time Trial bikes, particularly at their most advanced, are optimised for speed and nothing else; to start and not stop. No creature comforts whatsoever. A true single use bike.

    Road bikes on the other hand vary, but they are designed to be ridden in races. They are designed for agile, controllable handling, and varying degrees of rider comfort.

    The difference between the two for the real world cyclist is that for most mere mortals at least, a time trial bike (even a cheap one with alloy wheels) isn't a suitable bike for everyday use (and isn't allowed in many competitions), whereas even an out-and-out pro-level racer would be passable, if liable for theft. The lack of mudguards, fragile wheels, tubular tyres and very low rider position wouldn't make it ideal for bad weather commuting on Great British potholes, but it would still be better than a TT bike, IMHO.

    If you want a basic triathlon bike, I'm sure a road bike with aero extensions would be fine, and if you mount bottles and CO2 behind the saddle you'll look the part too. :P
  • nochekmatenochekmate Posts: 3,460
    Get yourself a Cervelo S1 with switchable seatpost position - superb all-rounder that doubles up equally well as a road bike & triathlon bike.
Sign In or Register to comment.