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Buying advice

TreguardTreguard Posts: 27
edited August 2014 in Commuting general
Hi All

I've only recently just got back into cycling, but realise that the bike I currently have doesn't satisfy my needs. I'm basically currently using a 7 year old diamondback MTB which is fine on canal towpaths and some trails, but I find it (and mtbs in general) too low down to feels safe(r) on the road.

With joining SkyRide, I'm going to have to go on the roads at some point for pretty much all of the rides I've been looking at, so I've decided now is a time to look for a new bike. I'm ideally looking at £500 but can stretch to £600 and would like something that I can use on the roads, canal towpaths and some trails (30/30/40%). I've seen it mentioned that front suspension at this price range is usually a no go, but am I right in assuming that fork lockout would be completely unsuitable for off road? I would also be looking at the dutch specials (puncture proof) so I appreciate there's a little added weight there, but I'm not one for having the patience (or wanting to stop in dodgy city areas) to fix a puncture. I'm still a newb at changing gears, but would like a good range and certainly ones that change smoothly (the gears on the diamondback are more of a case where you have to go slightly passed the point where the gear changes, then let the switch settle back a bit). If the seat is comfy then great, although I appreciate I may change this at a later stage.

The only other thing is weight. I appreciate that the puncture proof tyres will add weight, but it would still be nice not to ride something that feels like I'm trying to pull a tank along. The other thing I would be unsure of is whether to go disc brakes or not (especially given that only 30% will be spent on the roads).

If I'm being unreasonable with my budget, please do let me know, but I would really appreciate any advice on a bike in this range. If I really have to, I'll use the new bike for canal towpaths and on the roads and keep with the diamondback for trails, but it really would make the missus happier if there was just the one bike (along with hers) in the front room.

Btw, I weight 14 1/2 st atm, lost 3 stone and planning on settling around 13 stone with some lean muscle. I tend to look gaunt if I go less than that.

I would rather not buy from Halfords and prefer to go to a local supplier in the Manchester area.

Thanks in advance :)


  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    Front suspension at this price point can be fine, if you need it.

    I'm really not sure what bike you want, to be decent properly off road it has to be a mountain bike, if off-road just means gravel paths then most bikes will do the job, but a cyclocross bike or rigid forked Hybrid will do the job.

    Have a look at the Voodoo Marasa Hybrid at Halfords, hydraulic disc brakes, big wheels, works quiet well on mild off road or fit some road tyres and it can be quite quick, my Cousin has one.

    Don't worry about punctures, my last set of tyres had one each in 3,750 miles on road.
  • TreguardTreguard Posts: 27

    Many thanks for the reply. I think I'll probably keep the diamondback for now as a mountain bike and instead look for something primarily for canals, roads and parks (so nothing too majorly off road). I'm guessing I'd have to go up to 32 tyres (not sure if that's right).

    Hmm have you had experience buying from Halfords? I noticed that they sell these which compare with boardman.

  • TreguardTreguard Posts: 27
    I went into the Evans store in Manchester the other day to have a look at a few rigid hybrids. The Pinnacle Lithium Five (£700) caught my eye but a little expensive (there's also £150 difference between the five and the four but unsure why) and also a Trek 7.4 FX (£605 in sale)

    Theres £95 difference in the price, but I have noticed a few people on this forum said that by buying an Evans own brand you get more for your money (plus I suppose perhaps its less likely to get nicked).

    Just wondered what you all thought to these two or if there's something similar and better at this price range?

    I have a few in mind:-

    Jamis Coda Elite 2014 ... 9#features

    Pinnacle Lithium 5 2014 ... 65#reviews

    Trek 7.4 FX Disc 2014 ... 66#answers

    Hoy Shizuokia 0.002 2014 ... RRWidgetID
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