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Carrera Subway - Opinions please

jay-ninjajay-ninja Posts: 5
edited December 2017 in The workshop
Hi All, After a long lay-off I've decided to start commuting to work (based in Devon, so nice scenery and not too busy).

I'm pretty set on buying a Carrera Subway it's just a decision between the Subway 1 or 2. But to expand on my dilemma.....

The Subway 2 currently sells for £350 - and features hydraulic disc brakes.
http://www.halfords.com/cycling/bikes/hybrid-bikes/carrera-subway-2-hybrid-bike-18-20-22-frames

The Subway 1 currently on offer for £230 - mechanical disc brakes (and 24 gears as opposed to 27)
http://www.halfords.com/cycling/bikes/hybrid-bikes/carrera-subway-1-mens-hybrid-bike-18-20-22-frames

Now I figured I could buy the Subway 1 and upgrade the brakes (at around £40 for the brakes and £20 for the shifters) and my outlay would be £290 (plus I might make £20 back by selling the removed components on eBay).

I'm pretty handy with the spanners so the work doesn't phase me, Do you guys think I'm crazy, should I just go for the Subway 2?

I'm excited at getting back in the saddle - but expect lots more questions from me !!!

Posts

  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 24,298 Lives Here
    You'd have to change the brakes, shifters, derailleurs, cassette and chainset to do it properly. I wouldn't bother and I'm not shy of a bit of spannering.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    Do you really need a triple chainset for your commute ?
  • Veronese68 wrote:
    You'd have to change the brakes, shifters, derailleurs, cassette and chainset to do it properly. I wouldn't bother and I'm not shy of a bit of spannering.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    You'd have to change the brakes, shifters, derailleurs, cassette and chainset to do it properly. I wouldn't bother and I'm not shy of a bit of spannering.

    Ahh, that's interesting I hadn't realised that - but of course one has 24 gears the other 27 !!

    Fenix - I think the short answer is no I probably don't - But I really like the look of the Subway !

    I think it will be a Subway 2 then. Thanks guys.
  • oxomanoxoman Posts: 9,414
    Good solid commuting bike very underrated, get the hydraulic version and save yourself the work.
    Too many bikes according to Mrs O.
  • Veronese68 wrote:
    You'd have to change the brakes, shifters, derailleurs, cassette and chainset to do it properly. I wouldn't bother and I'm not shy of a bit of spannering.

    Something just occurred to me, if I’m buying new trigger shifters for 3 & 8 gears why would I need to change the running gear?


    Another question- I’m 5’ 7” with a 31” inside leg. Should I be looking at an 18” frame?
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,601
    You don't. If you stick with 8 speed you just need separate shifters. I think Veronese68 meant if you change to 9 speed.

    I would go sit on one. You seem to have long legs, so 18 would probably be ok. I wouldn't go bigger.

    I'm 5'10" ish, with 32 leg and generally manage on 18/19"/medium sizes.

    Depends what brakes you can get for that price though. Crappy hydraulics are crappy.
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  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 24,298 Lives Here
    cooldad wrote:
    You don't. If you stick with 8 speed you just need separate shifters. I think Veronese68 meant if you change to 9 speed.
    Yes, sorry. When he said changing the shifters I thought he meant to get to the 9 speed level rather than because of combined brakes and shifters.
  • Thanks for all your views - Very helpful.

    I have another, a friend of mine might buy my 18" Carrera Fury from me - he's 6" with a 32" inside leg - Do you guys think an 18" frame will be too small for him? It's just that getting him the bike to try is a bit of a mission due to distance apart.

    Thanks again folks.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    Too small, he's got shortish legs for his height so a longer body and will need a longer frame to suite.
  • If you've got a Carrera Fury i'd be half tempted to just put slicks on that and call it a day.
  • kirkeekirkee Posts: 369
    I am in Devon and I commute on a 26 wheel version Subway. I have made a few upgrades as they needed to be done like swapping out the brake and gear cables for quality ones and I fitted a deore mtb hollowtech crankset. I find the mechanical tektro disc brakes are good once you learn the adjustments. As far as having a triple, i use it every day as its hilly and if your laden with gear they make sense. Underated no frills commuter superbike for peanuts price!
    Caveat - I buy and ride cheap, however, I reserve the right to advise on expensive kit that I have never actually used and possibly never will
  • Surely mechanical disc brakes are better anyway for a daily workhorse bike. I can see the benefit of hydraulics off road but the simplicity of mechanical brakes and adjusting them is surely a positive for something in constant use. Especially with cheap hydraulic disc brakes too which can be more problematic.
  • Your taller mate might be able to grab one of the final 20" old Voodoo Marasa for £320 before BC discount, better spec than Subway.
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,601
    Surely mechanical disc brakes are better anyway for a daily workhorse bike. I can see the benefit of hydraulics off road but the simplicity of mechanical brakes and adjusting them is surely a positive for something in constant use. Especially with cheap hydraulic disc brakes too which can be more problematic.

    Hydraulic brakes are fit and forget. They might need a bleed once in a blue moon, otherwise change the pads and that's that.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

    London Calling on Facebook

    Parktools
  • cooldad wrote:
    Surely mechanical disc brakes are better anyway for a daily workhorse bike. I can see the benefit of hydraulics off road but the simplicity of mechanical brakes and adjusting them is surely a positive for something in constant use. Especially with cheap hydraulic disc brakes too which can be more problematic.

    Hydraulic brakes are fit and forget. They might need a bleed once in a blue moon, otherwise change the pads and that's that.

    That might be your experience but a huge number of hydraulic disc brakes can be problematic and bleeding isn't that easy when you have only very basic tools far from home, mechanical disc brakes are simple to adjust and keep working. Keeping a commuting bike simple pays dividands. The Subway is a workhorse, great quality frame, decent strong wheels can take a huge amount of abuse. If you go the hydraulic disc brake route you are creating a weak link in the bike's long time reliability. Mechannical disc brakes are so easy to work with, often takes seconds to make adjustments. Hydraulic disc brakes on the other hand can be more difficult and I've seen many bikes with pad rubbing and poorly setup. What can be one tiny tweak of a barrel adjuster can be a lot of head scratching with hydraulic brakes. The important thing at least is to know exactly what to do when you have brakes fail if you are confident any problems your hydraulic brakes will throw up away from home you can deal with then fair enough. Some models are more difficult to setup than others and more prone to problems.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    Mechanical are easier to fix with basic tools, but sorry, hydraulic really are so much more reliable, fit and forget.

    Bleeding is very rarely ever needed at all, the Formula on my MTB haven't been touched in 2 years and the cheap Clarks on my commuter have done 1200 miles with zero maintenance while the previous mechanical needed tweaking every month.
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,601
    I have some Magura hydraulic rim brakes on my Explosif that honestly haven't been touched in over a decade. Probably closer to 15 years. Except for new pads of course. Lots of pads.
    Being mineral oil helps. Although they even work filled with water.
    I don't do smileys.

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  • veronese68veronese68 Posts: 24,298 Lives Here
    Have to agree with CD and Rookie, hydraulics are much easier over time. Had BB7 on my cross bike and had to adjust them regularly, now I just change the pads when necessary.
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,601
    Only issues with hydraulics is normally unnecessary faffing.
    Don't spray chain lube on them. Bit of a hose now and then to remove crud.

    And the answer to every issue isn't bleed/cook pads in oven/use automotive brake cleaner.

    The answer is don't fiddle.
    I don't do smileys.

    There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda

    London Calling on Facebook

    Parktools
  • Well sounds like hydraulic brakes have improved somewhat. My experiences echo those of many others finding mechanical more reliable. Is hydraulic brake fade when they cook a thing of the past when braking hard down hills? I see many touring bikes still recommend and fit mechanical disc brakes. For me I would not dismiss the Carrera Subway 1 as an option because it has mechanical disc brakes.
  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    My second string MTB is using 2005 hydraulic brakes, been 100% reliable in the 8 years I’ve been using them.

    Boiling fluid is very difficult, you need a very big hill and to keep braking (rather than on and off) the more common issue is cooking the pads which of course would happen just the same on mechanical brakes.
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