Forum home Road cycling forum Cyclocross

Cyclocross Bike Advice

hucko003hucko003 Posts: 28
edited January 2016 in Cyclocross
Hello All,

I'd be very grateful for some advice. I'm looking at getting into cyclocross with plans of doing some CX sportives and probably some racing as well so need a bike that can do everything. My budget is around the £2,000 mark but can go over if the bike is worth it. In terms of frame, I would imagine aluminium would be the best to go for as I can beat it around a bit more than carbon and I'm apprehensive of falling off. I do own a carbon-framed road bike so know the difference carbon makes - if any of you think carbon would be a better option then please let me know. In terms of groupset, I really like the idea of SRAM's new 1x but would perhaps need to play around with ratios a little bit to tune into my riding. I could potentially put an 11/36 cassette on. I would be willing to consider Shimano as well and I have Shimano on my road bikes. Also do thru-axles make a big difference or are standard QR's still ok?

Specialized Crux E5 X1

The best bike at the moment looks like the Specialized Crux E5 X1

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/specialized/crux-x1-2016-cyclocross-... (link is external)

It has a SRAM Rival 1 groupset and is aluminium and looks pretty neat. It does use QR skewers though.

Fuji Cross

This also looks like a good bike, but frame wise probably not as good the Specialized. It has a Force CX1 groupset which is an upgrade. However, I've heard bad reviews of Fuji's in-house brand, Oval's wheels.

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/fuji/cross-11-2016-cyclocross-bike-e... (link is external)

Norco Threshold

Stepping up to a carbon frame now, but it's 'mid-modulus', so is aluminium better here? This does use thru-axles though and spec is pretty good.

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/norco/threshold-rival-1-2016-cyclocr... (link is external)

Trek Boone

I own a Trek road bike and know they are very good, so perhaps the Trek is the best option with the IsoSpeed decoupler as a sort-of suspension and a 600-series OCLV carbon frame. This is over-budget though - do I need this as a first CX bike or is it overkill? I would also look at upgrading the FSA chainset and wheels here again as the Bontrager wheels that came stock on my road bike are shocking. It is also a Shimano groupset. Trek is also one of the best brands when it comes to warranties.

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/trek/boone-5-disc-2016-cyclocross-bi... (link is external)

Trek also do some cantilever options in both their Boone and aluminium Crockett range - any thoughts?

I'd be really grateful for some advice and would be interested to hear what you think which bike would be most suitable. Thanks in advance.

Posts

  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,674
    +1 to that. I've recently bought one (mechanical not hydraulic version as in the link) for winter commuting, and, although I don't race CX or anything, I've found that it's rapidly replaced my MTB for off-road riding. It feels incredibly tough, I love the 1X gears (mine has a 42 chainring as it's mainly intended for road use) and so far has managed to go pretty much anywhere I can go on the MTB.

    Next stage is to consider the shortcut over the Sidlaws on my commute. That's it running from south to north to the west of Auchterhouse Hill...
  • With work, the bike has to be bought at Evans so the Planet X is sadly out of the picture
  • VamPVamP Posts: 674
    Most things are an overkill for cross. We have a multiple world champion in our club and he races on 20 year old Columbus frames. He does use good tubs though.

    So think in terms of how easy it will be to change wheels (mid race in the pits, or between bikes, if you do decide to get two identical frames - which is where the real winning advantage is at this end of the season). I'd forget thru axles on those grounds alone.

    Your thoughts on aluminium frames are quite correct. Couple of hundred grams is what carbon saves you, which is about 100 yards of riding through a bog. I am not scared of carbon for cross, my bikes are carbon, but it's not a massive advantage either way. Good aluminium is better than censored carbon. CAADX or Kinesis are great alu frames. In fact, the new Kinesis CX Race is the same weight as my carbon frames, and these build up to 7kg in race weight.

    Geometry is more important, compatibility of components and cost of spares more important still. Cross is tough on kit.

    I expect the Boone is lovely, but it's an elite level race frame, and wouldn't be my choice for a do it all bike. A Pro6 would be so much more what you want. Or a CAADX.

    I don't much like Specialized by I expect the Crux will be okay.

    As for factory fitted wheels, these are usually the crappiest component on any build, Bontrager make really good wheels too, as do most manufacturers. But the low spec stuff fitted to meet a price point will generally disappoint. In any case, you will want something specific to race on, and more than one option too. So get the 105 CAADX, and spend your other grand on upgrades.

    Race bikes are usually very different to off the shelf spec anyway. Although Raleigh sell their cross bike in a totally race ready spec - it is over 3k though.
  • devhadsdevhads Posts: 236
    The Trek Crockett aluminium frame is very light, lighter than a lot of cheaper carbon frames, 1250g in large and comes with a sub 400g fork. The canti 7 has just been reduced at Evans to £1250 from £1600. Sram Force CX1, and good canti brakes. The wheels aren't up to much but you'd have plenty of money for upgrades.

    Some very good racers on these this year, in the leagues I race in. It has holes for bottle cages too so can be used as a do it all bike. It was designed with Katie Compton in mind and as such is quite aggressive.
  • You should be able to get something really good for £2000. Ridley X-Night 50 is one I would look at.
  • VamPVamP Posts: 674
    The Trek Crockett aluminium frame is very light, lighter than a lot of cheaper carbon frames, 1250g in large and comes with a sub 400g fork. The canti 7 has just been reduced at Evans to £1250 from £1600. Sram Force CX1, and good canti brakes. The wheels aren't up to much but you'd have plenty of money for upgrades.

    Some very good racers on these this year, in the leagues I race in. It has holes for bottle cages too so can be used as a do it all bike. It was designed with Katie Compton in mind and as such is quite aggressive.

    Good shout. Add that to the Cannondale and Kinesis shortlist.
  • bobleybobley Posts: 60
    I'm going to go against the grain and say I love my new Crux after selling my Planet X. Slighter slacker than the PX. My lad loves his Crux too (and gets much better race results than me).

    I'd have a dabble on a Diverge if I was buying an all round bike.
  • I'm going to go against the grain and say I love my new Crux after selling my Planet X. Slighter slacker than the PX. My lad loves his Crux too (and gets much better race results than me).

    I'd have a dabble on a Diverge if I was buying an all round bike.

    Which CruX do you have? Looks like my frontrunner at the moment
  • bobleybobley Posts: 60
    I was going to get the E5 X1 as littluns E5 Elite (2012) is a lightweight beastie but I got smitten by last years carbon model in orange which Freeborn were advertising but when I rang up they were out of stock and offered me the current Pro frameset (slime green with orangey red bits) with 15% off and I proceeded to build it up with Sram Force X1 and adapted my old wheels to the new 12mm standard axles. In hindsight I should've bought the X1 as the E5 frames are excellent and barely weigh any more than the carbon models, also the E5s dont have the silly axles.
Sign In or Register to comment.