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After some advice please, be gentle!

BoromedicBoromedic Posts: 96
edited June 2013 in Road buying advice
Hi there, sorry to bother you all with a long post on a topic that is all too frequent on here judging by all the posts I've found on the search engine!

I am a Mountain Biker currently and have long been discussing the merits of buying a Road Bike with my fellow MTB'ers who ride both to keep up my base fitness and also potentially use as a commuter once my workplace closes and moves 5 miles away from where I live. Fortunately for me my work place is going to commence a cycle2work scheme through Halfords in the next few weeks so at least I can gain some discount from that. My understanding of the scheme leads me to believe that as long as they can source a bike through one of the independent shops they deal with I can pretty much buy anything within the £1000 price tag (http://www.cycle2work.info/siteadvicecentrebrand#Store) check out point 3 on this info sheet.

I'm not picking your brains as to which actual bike to purchase as I understand the choices are vast, and individual experience counts for a lot, however some recommendations as to which kind of bike to purchase and the better ones in that range would be great. As I have absolutely no experience to draw on to make the choice.

There are loads of awesome, flat out road racing bikes out there but when I think of my requirements I'm not sure that would be the best purchase for me. Essentially I would be using the bike mostly for riding when the outside weather isn't at its best, winter training miles when the fields/trails/bridleways are too inaccessible, commuting in all weathers and occasionally some nice sunny miles when I can't be bothered to drive to the Peaks to get a decent off road ride in! I would potentially be considering touring at a later date also so maybe mudguard and pannier bosses might be a good idea?

With that in mind, am I best to get a Cyclocross bike, a hybrid, a tourer or a flat out road bike? My concern is that through various things I've read, buying a full carbon race style bike might not be the best wet weather option, and I'm looking to avoid lots of maintenance where possible. Is Carbon a better choice than Aluminium when riding through salty winter puddles? Hence the suggestion to maybe get a Cyclocross bike. Weight isn't a huge problem for me as my Ghost 29er MTB weighs in at 13kg so anything around the 9-10kg mark is a good saving for me.

My other option as I have a spare set of wheels for the Ghost is to spec them as road wheels (I'd need to buy new disc rotors for them and road tyres) and just use that, although heaving 13kg permanently around roads isn't my idea of fun!!

Some idea of bikes I'm considering:

Tifosi CK1 Cyclocross
Mekk Pinerolo AL1.5
Carrera Virago
Boardman Hybrid or Cyclocross
Kinesis TK2
Giant Defy 1 or 2 (thinking of whether mud guards are needed?)
Ribble Winter Trainer (Don't think I can get this on the Halfords scheme?)
Trek Domane 2

And so on and so on!

Thanks in advance for the advice guys much appreciated
"I should live in salt for leaving you, behind"

Ghost HTX Actinum 29er

Posts

  • declan1declan1 Posts: 2,470
    The Giant Defy is a great frame, so is the Domane and the Kinesis. Carbon melts when in contact with water ;)

    You can get mudguards for the Defy - Giant make ones specially for it.

    Road - Dolan Preffisio
    MTB - On-One Inbred

    I have no idea what's going on here.
  • BoromedicBoromedic Posts: 96
    declan1 wrote:
    The Giant Defy is a great frame, so is the Domane and the Kinesis. Carbon melts when in contact with water ;)

    You can get mudguards for the Defy - Giant make ones specially for it.

    Lol, I hope it doesn't!! Yeah a friend at work has a Defy 1 and loves it, so he's recommended it however he does zip outdoor winter mileage so was wondering how it would hold up in the bad weather ie: bearings etc.

    The biggest problem is deciding which type of bike to pick, the Kinesis and Tifosi are similar to each other as are the Defy and Domane but I appreciate any help. Thanks so much for chipping in mate :-)
    "I should live in salt for leaving you, behind"

    Ghost HTX Actinum 29er
  • declan1declan1 Posts: 2,470
    Bearings on any bike are going to take a beating in the winter. My dad rides his Giant TCR Composite 1 all year round and the water and grit of the winter does increase the wear of BBs and chains etc.

    The best thing to do is get the frame you like the most, and try to clean it as much as possible!

    Out of those I would personally either go for the Giant or the Trek - I would have to ride both to find which I preferred :)

    Road - Dolan Preffisio
    MTB - On-One Inbred

    I have no idea what's going on here.
  • BoromedicBoromedic Posts: 96
    declan1 wrote:
    Bearings on any bike are going to take a beating in the winter. My dad rides his Giant TCR Composite 1 all year round and the water and grit of the winter does increase the wear of BBs and chains etc.

    The best thing to do is get the frame you like the most, and try to clean it as much as possible!

    Out of those I would personally either go for the Giant or the Trek - I would have to ride both to find which I preferred :)

    Cheers dude, yeah I was going to head down to Pedal Power in Loughborough to see what they say and get fitted maybe. They stock Giant and Trek, I'm hoping to do the sale with them if I decide on one of them depending on if the Halfords scheme is transferable that is. Anyone know if thats the case?

    Ta :-)
    "I should live in salt for leaving you, behind"

    Ghost HTX Actinum 29er
  • MindermastMindermast Posts: 124
    Two weeks ago, I wouldn't have said cyclocross, but I got last week. Cyclocross bikes have wider tyres, different brakes and a lower gear ratio than "normal" racing bikes. Many frames even have fixtures for mudguards, which is a big advantage for the way to work. On some, you can even fit a rack.

    Last winter, I have used an old MTB for my way to work, and as soon as possible, switched back to my racing bike, because it rolls so much better on the road. On the cyclocross bike I hardly notice the difference to a racing bike, even with cross tyres.

    Apart from that, racing bikes also work in winter, just quite iffy on snow and the likes. No trouble with bearings or anything else, simply use a bit more oil and remove salty stuff - well, same procedure as with MTBs.
  • BoromedicBoromedic Posts: 96
    Mindermast wrote:
    Two weeks ago, I wouldn't have said cyclocross, but I got last week. Cyclocross bikes have wider tyres, different brakes and a lower gear ratio than "normal" racing bikes. Many frames even have fixtures for mudguards, which is a big advantage for the way to work. On some, you can even fit a rack.

    Last winter, I have used an old MTB for my way to work, and as soon as possible, switched back to my racing bike, because it rolls so much better on the road. On the cyclocross bike I hardly notice the difference to a racing bike, even with cross tyres.

    Apart from that, racing bikes also work in winter, just quite iffy on snow and the likes. No trouble with bearings or anything else, simply use a bit more oil and remove salty stuff - well, same procedure as with MTBs.

    Cheers for the information mate, there's so much choice out there!! I'm leaning towards the Giant but the Kinesis also sounds promising which would be a kind of mix of a road/cyclocross bike.

    Thanks!
    "I should live in salt for leaving you, behind"

    Ghost HTX Actinum 29er
  • BoromedicBoromedic Posts: 96
    Thanks for the help thus far guys, I've had a rethink and I'm now weighing up 2-3 different options I think and I'm going to do a separate post for feedback on the components they have.

    I'm leaning toward these:

    Tifosi CK7 with the Campagnolo Groupset (Veloce I think)
    Kinesis T2

    Maybe also the Tifosi CK1 based on mindermast's feedback above.

    Cheers!
    "I should live in salt for leaving you, behind"

    Ghost HTX Actinum 29er
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,425
    http://www.edinburghbicycle.com/product ... oss-pro-12

    Also Genesis do some interesting options - have a look at real cycles.
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
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