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14 Mile hilly commute

Velolong222Velolong222 Posts: 4
edited August 2014 in Commuting general
Hi All,

I have a 2004 claud butler roubaix. This started life as a triple and now has a compact chain ring. It is an alloy frame with carbon forks. It was pretty good in its day. However, I have just had a catastrophic chain off which has bent the chainring and the chain. Due to age and mileage it needs several new components in addition to the repair including saddle, gear selectors, calipers amongst other things and some new wheels. Thanks to a bike work scheme it may be cheaper to just get a new bike.

I use the bike to commute 14 miles (22km) each way to work through Devon and Somerset countryside. The ride has elevated gain of 486m so is very hilly, this is all done over three big climbs (there are no flat segments whatsoever) and I use lanes to avoid the dangerous A roads that are the alternative (I think the authorities have forgotten about the lanes because they are quite potholed). It takes about an hour on the road bike. However, it has no mud-guards, thin hard tyres and delicate wheels and quite high gearing.

My question to you lovely bike-radar folk is this....

Should I replace the road bike with a commuter for this type of commute?

I have a budget of about £600-£700. Obviously given the terrain a fixie is completely out of the question. I am very fit because of this commute, but would a flat barred and heavier bike slow me right down? Or would something with better gearing make up the time on the climbs as I don't want to significantly increase the commute time but could do with more comfort. Also, I like the idea of disks as it is wet here and I ride well into the autumn.

Would appreciate some advice and also some pointers on good bikes in this price bracket.




  • drlodgedrlodge Posts: 4,824
    Yeh a CX bike so you can ride 28 or 32 tyres and fit mudguards, or may be a road bike with good clearance.
    WyndyMilla Massive Attack | Rourke 953 | Condor Italia 531 Pro | Boardman CX Pro | DT Swiss RR440 Tubeless Wheels
    Find me on Strava
  • Have a look at the 2015 models coming out at the moment. You should be able to get a road or cx disc model in your price range - and they often have clearance for bigger tyres and mudguard mounts. It'll be a damn good upgrade
  • I have a hilly commute of a similar distance, with similarly rough roads. I use a Cube X Race cyclo cross bike fitted with 30mm road tyres and mudguards. It is pretty well suited to the task, apart from the canti brakes which are really poor. If I was buying a bike for commuting again I would be very interested in the Whyte RD7 range Disc brakes, mudguard mounts, clearance for larger tyres and not too heavy. They look like the perfect UK commuter bike - you might pick up the 2014 models at good discount at the moment too. Over budget, but the Canyon Infinite Al would also make a great commuter If you are going to spend 2hrs on the thing every week day, it really would be worth spending a bit more than £700 for better components and less weight.

  • Thanks all. I have been doing my research today and, as you are all suggesting, I came to the conclusion that a Cyclo Cross would be my best option.

    I do like the Whyte range. I found the 'Dorset' by looking through the reviews on here. It is over budget, so I am thinking of pushing the budget a little further to stretch to something a little better than i can get for £700. The giant revolt or the Trek 7.4 both look good.

    Thanks for the advice.
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