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Spare / second bike

the_urban_spacemanthe_urban_spaceman Posts: 58
edited December 2016 in Cyclocross
The mud over the last 2 weekends have finally taught me the benefit of the pits and those lucky sods with second bikes.

(Is that what you call them btw? Second bikes? Spare bikes?)

Anyway, this is something I would like to do next season - have another bike to hop onto when my rear mec snaps!

Question is do people tend to have a duplicate of their "main" bike, or just another that's set up as closely as possible?

Posts

  • Ideally you want them identical so that you don't favour one over another and therefore possibly compromise your race as you'd rather stay on your 'favourite'.....but that is in ideal world.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    As long as the riding position is the same, it doesn't really matter. Two identical bikes are great if you are a big spender (or a supported/sponsored rider), but most aren't...
  • VamPVamP Posts: 674
    It is very convenient if the frames AND groupset are the same. But if it is a problem, then just try to get close, both on geometry and on components. It makes life a lot easier especially at the breakage end of the season.

    It's another reason why going for top end bikes isn't a great idea for cross.

  • Question is do people tend to have a duplicate of their "main" bike, or just another that's set up as closely as possible?

    SIngle speed is probably the cheapest solution then... :wink:
  • Chris JamesChris James Posts: 1,040
    VamP wrote:
    It's another reason why going for top end bikes isn't a great idea for cross.

    I was bought a copy of Cycling Plus recently to read when my youngest son's appendix burst and he was in hospital. It was probably the November edition, and there was a cyclocross bike grouptest. I bored everyone by laughing at the reviews as they were mostly of bikes that were £3 - 5 and mostly ran clinchers. Apparently the X-Bow was too heavy to race, which must be news to a load of the youth riders in Yorkshire.

    I think the test was 'won' by the (very nice) Scott Addict CX, but you are into sponsored athlete territory to afford two of them.
  • All very interesting replies, thanks folks.

    Before the last few weekends I had been planning on upgrading my bike but this advice has made me consider instead saving my pennies to get a duplicate of the low-end bike (Boardman CX Team) I raced this season.

    With regards to cleaning the one in the pits is one of those blue mobi jet washers sufficient?
  • VamPVamP Posts: 674
    VamP wrote:
    It's another reason why going for top end bikes isn't a great idea for cross.

    I was bought a copy of Cycling Plus recently to read when my youngest son's appendix burst and he was in hospital. It was probably the November edition, and there was a cyclocross bike grouptest. I bored everyone by laughing at the reviews as they were mostly of bikes that were £3 - 5 and mostly ran clinchers. Apparently the X-Bow was too heavy to race, which must be news to a load of the youth riders in Yorkshire.

    I think the test was 'won' by the (very nice) Scott Addict CX, but you are into sponsored athlete territory to afford two of them.


    Wheras getting two Crocketts (say) with nice tubs could be accomplished for less than the cost of one Addict. It's a funny world.
  • kingrollokingrollo Posts: 3,147
    I disagree

    You would want a winter bike to take mudguards - you would want your best or race bike - not to take mudguards.

    Defy 2 makes a greate winter bike as it takes guards - and there always loads on ebay.
  • imposter2.0imposter2.0 Posts: 11,003
    kingrollo wrote:
    I disagree

    You would want a winter bike to take mudguards - you would want your best or race bike - not to take mudguards.

    Defy 2 makes a greate winter bike as it takes guards - and there always loads on ebay.

    Are you on the right forum?
  • VamPVamP Posts: 674
    Blue mobi jet washers. I've had three. Two broke, and I lost the last one at a race last season, and I am not replacing it, saving up for a petrol jobbie instead.

    They are not great quality wise, water pressure is variable, and even at best low, and things tend to go wrong with them. But there's not much else out there in that price range. Aqua2go ones that some outlets sell, are the same with different branding.
  • kingrollokingrollo Posts: 3,147
    Imposter wrote:
    kingrollo wrote:
    I disagree

    You would want a winter bike to take mudguards - you would want your best or race bike - not to take mudguards.

    Defy 2 makes a greate winter bike as it takes guards - and there always loads on ebay.

    Are you on the right forum?

    Yawn !

    :?
  • kingrollo wrote:
    Imposter wrote:
    kingrollo wrote:
    I disagree

    You would want a winter bike to take mudguards - you would want your best or race bike - not to take mudguards.

    Defy 2 makes a greate winter bike as it takes guards - and there always loads on ebay.

    Are you on the right forum?

    Yawn !

    :?
    He's only asking as this was a question about having a second CX bike in the pits for racing not having a winter road bike.
  • mikpemmikpem Posts: 139
    I have a spare and it's nothing like my main race bike but it is just that, a spare to get me through to the end of the race if I come into difficulty.

    It cost me £50 for the frame & forks (PX Uncle John with a little dent which has been stripped and resprayed), £20 for the brifters, £40 for the crankset, an old set of R500 wheels which still do the job and the rest is made of bits from previous upgrades to other bikes.

    I take the spare with me to every race, do a few warm up laps on it so that my race bike is clean for the race then leave it in the pits. I've not used it in a race yet although I nearly started on it yesterday after getting caught short warming up but a team mate brought it to the grid for me.

    It's this different:
    Race - Spare
    Carbon fork - Alloy fork
    2x11 gears - 1x10 gears with a Qring
    Canti brakes - V brakes
    Kenda tyres - Schwalbe tyres (I prefer the Schwalbe but they are a bit more worn)
  • tgotbtgotb Posts: 4,714
    As others have said, it's quite handy if your pit bike is similar spec to your "main" bike, because you won't be tempted to persevere on a clogging bike to avoid changing to something that you perceive to be inferior. For a given budget, much better to have two basic but similar bikes than to have a flashy one and a clunker. Similar bikes also mean you don't have to double up on spares, and simplifies maintenance. In particular, being unable to swap wheels between bikes is going to be a real pain, so they want to have the same braking system, same number/type of gears etc.

    Having two bikes gives you an opportunity to compare tyres. For instance, riding alternate laps on intermediates and muds will show you the real difference between them.

    It's amazing how good a job you can do in the pits with nothing more than a stick to scrape away the worst of the mud. Add a bucket of water and a dishwashing brush, and you can do a very good job indeed, in less time than it takes to ride a lap; this is generally all that's required if you're pitting for one rider in a typical league race. A petrol-powered washer gives you the ability to clean a bike much more quickly, within a minute or so, which is great if your rider is changing bikes every half lap, or if you're supporting several riders. Other than at National level, where the courses tend to get a lot more cut up, it's very rare that riders will want to do half-lap bike changes, so this may be overkill.

    A petrol-powered washer brings its own logistical issues; it uses a lot of water, so you're going to need a minimum of 30-40 litres per rider, probably more, and you may have to bring it all the way from home. This most likely means you're going to need a big car or a van to get everything to events, and probably some sort of trolley to lug everything to the pits. Wheely bins with hose attachments seem to be quite popular.

    My Mobi pressure washer died at the Nationals a couple of years ago. My pit man switched straight to the bucket and brush, had a fresh bike for me every lap, plus one half-lap change, and I wasn't even aware there'd been a problem until after the finish.
    Pannier, 120rpm.
  • mikpemmikpem Posts: 139
    As you see, I've not followed any of TGOTB's very good advice but I'm restricted by budget. One thing that is for sure though, if my decent bike is clogging up I won't think twice about changing to my spare as I'd rather break that. Being able to share parts would be handy but the cost involved in upgrading the spare to 11sp isn't really worth it for the level I'm at. I just don't want to travel to a race and have to stop after a lap because I've broken a bike (this happened a couple of times and is why I put the spare together)
  • Thanks everyone.

    Final question: how do I get my missus to give up her Sundays and her disgust with mud to stand in a pit for me ;)

    Happy Christmas!
  • mikpemmikpem Posts: 139
    If you work it out let me know.

    My dad did it once, I joined a club who said they were racing and supporting each other in the pits so that I could help someone in return for them helping me, but it turns out I'm the only person in the club over 12 who races :/
  • Chris JamesChris James Posts: 1,040
    mikpem wrote:
    One thing that is for sure though, if my decent bike is clogging up I won't think twice about changing to my spare as I'd rather break that.

    A man after my own heart!
  • tgotbtgotb Posts: 4,714
    Final question: how do I get my missus to give up her Sundays and her disgust with mud to stand in a pit for me ;)
    I won't write the answer to that on a public forum...

    For league events, try posting on the league forum/Facebook page, looking for a pit buddy in a different category/race. You pit for them, they pit for you, job done. Make new friends; doesn't matter one iota whether you're in the same club...
    Pannier, 120rpm.
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