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New bike advice

pfishukpfishuk Posts: 20
edited May 2016 in Road buying advice
Hi all, after some advice from seasoned riders

I'm looking for a first road bike, started back up riding a few months ago after a few years away with a hybrid for commuting, but in that short time have realised how much I missed being out on the road. I've started hitting 40 miles or so at weekends just for fun but its hard work on the flat bar I have (its a Roam 2).

So I started looking at proper road bikes, have tried a couple and life the Giant defy frames for fit. I have done as much sizing as I can and reckon I'm in the ball park for a 56cm frame, I've read all I can about gears, group sets etc. but don't think I could tell the difference between them all. I have had advice from 'serious' cyclists at work who all suggest going new - Ribble, Dolan, Planetx.

I have already used the C2W scheme for the hybrid so now have to stump up the cash myself, have managed to persuade the wife that's its a good idea, she's seeing the weight drop off so has gone for it.

Ive been looking at second hand stuff on Ebay around the £500 mark but could go a little higher for the right bike.

so here's the questions:
1. Would I notice the difference between Tiagra, 105 and ultegra?
2. Would it make a 'real' difference having 9,10 or even 11 gears in the rear? (I do use the third front gear on the hybrid for some hills)
3. Apart from the Defy is there anything else I should consider in that price range (new or second hand) I've heard about the Btwin 540se but not sure how it would compare to the giants.

cheers

Posts

  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    My ten bob's worth:

    1. Would I notice the difference between Tiagra, 105 and ultegra?

    Not really. The most important factor is having a GS that is setup correctly and well maintained. Ultegra is the 'nicest' but that won't help when you are slogging it up a 15% hill or whizzing down the other side.

    2. Would it make a 'real' difference having 9,10 or even 11 gears in the rear?

    Not really. I run 9 speed and was out on a club ride yesterday. The best climber was the best climber, the strongest rider on the front was exactly that... GS and the number of gears didn't play any part in that. More gears means that the block at the back should* be closer so, if you like to keep an even cadence, then this will help.
    *if you have a wide range cassette on 11 speed the gaps are bigger than a close ratio 9 speed.

    In general, I would prefer more gears than 9 but that usually means one also gets an obligatory 11t at the back, which I would get to use once on a ride, in a month with a R in.

    3. Apart from the Defy is there anything else I should consider in that price range (new or second hand) I've heard about the Btwin 540se but not sure how it would compare to the giants.

    Lot's of bikes in the £500 s/h range because of the popularity of £1k bikes in the C2W scheme. Spesh Allez is very popular (I have one) and they are good all rounders, keep their value which can be good and bad. Boardman's give great VFM, etc., etc. The biggest factor in a 'good' bike is one where the fit is right (both in terms of size and geo).
  • pfishukpfishuk Posts: 20
    Thanks for that, any help appreciated
  • dj58dj58 Posts: 2,193
    viewtopic.php?f=40042&t=13064736
    viewtopic.php?f=40042&t=13063171
    viewtopic.php?f=40042&t=13064397

    Also look at the Cannondale Synapse, Specialised Roubaix and Trek 1 Series bikes
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 10,462
    Have to agree with bobbinogs and DJ58,s links. Have look at last year's models as retailers try to shift them. Have look at paulscycles website for discounted bikes, loads to look at, they are a good company to deal with. Be wary with second hand if you are not bike, mechanically savvy as a few people will sell stuff that is fit for the bin or needs a lot of work. Before choosing any bike just make sure it fits you, no good buying a bike at a huge discount if it's miles to small or big for you. It happens to frequently unfortunately. Good luck in getting your next bike N+1.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • pfishukpfishuk Posts: 20
    Thanks for all of those

    Been to see a Specialzed Allez elite up for £500 on Ebay, nice but certain frame was a tad too small, definitely need a 56cm top tube.

    also had a look through Paulscycles, there is a defy 2 2015 for £499 - is that a good buy at that price?

    Also are Merlin's any good?

    https://www.merlincycles.com/merlin-ff1 ... a06ecabf62
  • dj58dj58 Posts: 2,193
    pfishuk wrote:
    Thanks for all of those

    also had a look through Paulscycles, there is a defy 2 2015 for £499 - is that a good buy at that price?

    Yes, if that is the best price you can find in the size you want.
  • Decathalon are doing the Triban 540 for £500 new just now, prob because the range is due a refresh. It's a very decent spec for the money.
    Carrera Subway 2015
    Boardman Hybrid Team 2014
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