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Help with a newbie to cyclocross please

twonkstwonks Posts: 352
edited December 2013 in Cyclocross
As title really.

At 42 I've ridden bikes for over half my life but always fall back to the first love of mtb riding.

I have a hardtail and FS but find myself wanting to ride into work using canal paths and bridleways as well as a lap or so of Rutland water occasionally.

Not really interested in road riding unless part of an off road route, as I've had a few decent road bikes and never really got on with tarmac munching.

Both the mtbs are way OTT for this riding so I am looking at a CX beasty.

However at 240lb is the demand on a CX wheelset and tyres too much to be rattling around bridleways and rutted singletrack at 20mph+ (downhill at least ;o) )

If it is, what sort of bike should I be looking for. I fancy discs and hydraulic if possible, but ideally want it cheaper than £600 and don't mind s/hand.

Any thoughts about the general use of a CX bike against that say of a rigid mtb, and also comments on bikes to look out for would be much appreciated.


  • Cross bikes in general are built to be stronger to help with the rough treatment they get so rider weight shouldn't be an issue. If you're going second hand I wouldn't worry about wheel sets and just ride what you buy until it brakes. I'm also 42 and bought my cross bike second hand for £600 on eBay and have been racing it this winter and I have to say I love it. I too come from a mtb background (cross country mainly) but in the past few years had switched to the road and I was craving for the off road excitement and CX has it all for me. I can't help you with what bike as it really will just depend on what's out there. Good luck.
  • Find a nice second hand Giant TCX or Focus Mares or Spesh Crux. There are a lot of good bikes out there on sale. More so after the cross season ends in Feb.

    Don't worry about weight - I'm 80+kgs and at the speed I hit stuff when racing the force would be like someone double your size.

    Your bottle will run out long before you can hit and break something on a good cross bike from wear and tear. Be sure not to run your tyres under 50 or 60 psi. Else buy shares in a rubber company...
    When a cyclist has a disagreement with a car; it's not who's right, it's who's left.
  • durhamwaspdurhamwasp Posts: 1,244
    Ridley X-Bows are good value, and can usually be picked up 2nd hand for a bargain - Reports on Cingles du Mont Ventoux, Alpe D'Huez, Galibier, Izoard, Tourmalet, Paris-Roubaix Sportive & Tour of Flanders Sportive, Amstel Gold Xperience, Vosges, C2C, WOTR routes....
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    You'll struggle to find hydraulic discs on a CX bike, especially used as they're pretty new, so likely to be cable-actated. TRP HyRds are good - cable/disc hybrid. Disc wheels are likely to be built 32 hole, so strong rims and fit the widest tyres you can fit - 40mm Schwalbe Smart Sams are cheap and durable and ideal for mixed trail use.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
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