Planet X London Road - Suitable for gravel paths/grass areas

Apologies in advance as this is noobie question.

I'm looking to get a casual bike for cycling with friends - 20 to 30 miles a time and very occasionally going out for a family bike ride with daughter. The terrain is a combination of road/tarmac paths, rougher/gravel paths and through parks over short grass (but not mud). Fair weather only - no mountain bike trails.

I was originally looking at gravel bikes and approached Planet X. My budget is less than £1000.

They come back and recommended their London Road - https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/CBPXLDNRDSA1/planet-x-london-road-sram-apex-1-disc-road-bike

Does this sound to you like it will tick all my boxes?

Are the tyres suitable for the terrain I mentioned above?

Can you recommend any pedals? I would like some that can be used with casual shoes 80% of the time but also clip on to shoes for the rest of the time.

Should I be going for this type of bike or a hybrid?

Lastly, I know colour is personal preference but would you go for the stealth black or zesty lime?

I think they recommended this as its below £1000 as if I look at their Gravel bikes that are all well over £1000.

Hope you can help.
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Comments

  • joeyhalloran
    joeyhalloran Posts: 1,080
    They list the max tyre size as 35mm which would be fine over tow paths, family rides and generally very 'light' offroad. For rougher gravel paths and longer rides where you'd want some extra cushioning of larger tyres this may seem a little small.

    I have had a Planet X London Road in the past and really enjoyed riding it offroad but there are lots more bikes in the 'gravel' space now.

    The Ribble CGR Al has space for 45mm tyres which would be a very comfortable ride on any offroad paths.

    You can get dual sided pedals like this

    https://www.wiggle.co.uk/shimano-m324-combination-pedals?lang=en&curr=GBP&dest=1&sku=4000000080&kpid=4000000080&utm_source=google&utm_term=&utm_campaign=Shopping+-+All+Products&utm_medium=base&gclid=EAIaIQobChMItpyz7LTp7wIVjKSyCh2alQfDEAQYBiABEgKKUvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

    from Shimano and a few other brands which should do both jobs, they are pretty heavy mind, though it doens't sound like you mind too much about that.
  • Thanks for replying. Any other recommendations to take a look at?

    Also would I need new tyres on the Planet X London road for basic off road/gravel paths?
  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,666
    I have an old cx bike that I use as a commuter, I also used to use it for what would now be gravel bike territory (gravel bikes didn't exist at the time as far as I know).

    On the commute I use 28mm slick tyres and there are a few short sections through parks, gravel paths and leaf covered paths. They cope fine but I have to take it easy on the leafy/slightly muddy bits.

    As a 'gravel bike' I have 32mm treaded tyres with light tread in the middle and bigger lugs on the sides (I forget the brand). They cope well with leafy/light mud tracks and are better on gravel paths at the expense of being slower on tarmac.

    I also have 'proper' off-road tyres for winter mud but they rarely see tarmac other than the couple of roads between my house and the woods.

    I would go with the slick tyres fitted to the bike and change them if you feel you need more grip off road. Even on 25mm slick tyres, the stuff you describe will be doable, just slower and a bit less comfortable.
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523
    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    I can't see the price/spec of the London Road so not sure what's comparable spec wise, but you mention a £1k budget so others to consider would be:

    Ribble CGR Al as already mentioned
    Vitus Substance
    Kona Rove
    Cannondale Topstone 4 (£1050)

    Some of these are more road oriented and some more off-road oriented, but probably all will do what you want.
  • singleton said:

    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    I can't see the price/spec of the London Road so not sure what's comparable spec wise, but you mention a £1k budget so others to consider would be:

    Ribble CGR Al as already mentioned
    Vitus Substance
    Kona Rove
    Cannondale Topstone 4 (£1050)

    Some of these are more road oriented and some more off-road oriented, but probably all will do what you want.

    Thanks.. Yeah looks like the London Road sold out overnight and isn't expected back till October! - snooze you lose as the saying goes...

    I'll take a look at the other recommendation you provided (thank you).. Just out of interest, which are more for off-road from those listed?
  • joeyhalloran
    joeyhalloran Posts: 1,080
    singleton said:

    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    No, they are ETRTO 622-37 which is 35c wide
  • Is a Bergamont 2021 Grandurance 4 a good bike and worth considering? My local bike store has one of these in stock at £989 but not familiar with the make..
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523
    edited April 2021

    singleton said:

    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    I can't see the price/spec of the London Road so not sure what's comparable spec wise, but you mention a £1k budget so others to consider would be:

    Ribble CGR Al as already mentioned
    Vitus Substance
    Kona Rove
    Cannondale Topstone 4 (£1050)

    Some of these are more road oriented and some more off-road oriented, but probably all will do what you want.

    Just out of interest, which are more for off-road from those listed?
    Tyre size is the biggest indicator.
    Bikes with e.g. 650x47 wheels and tyres will be more off-road oriented.
    Bikes with e.g. 700x35c wheels and tyres will be more road oriented.

    -Edit-
    For pedals, I use Shimano PD-EH500 Pedals and find them good. SPD one side and flats on the other.
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523
    edited April 2021

    singleton said:

    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    No, they are ETRTO 622-37 which is 35c wide
    Thanks, that's todays new learning.
    I always thought the 622 was the tyre diameter, and the other figure was the tyre width...
  • joeyhalloran
    joeyhalloran Posts: 1,080
    singleton said:

    singleton said:

    The challenge right now is availability of bikes and that limits your choice. The supplied tyres on the London Road are listed as 37mm width.

    No, they are ETRTO 622-37 which is 35c wide
    Thanks, that's todays new learning.
    I always thought the 622 was the tyre diameter, and the other figure was the tyre width...
    I'll be honoest, I did too until I saw on the PX website it had the ERTO is -37 but next to it "35c" so I looked it up.
  • Does anyone have any views on the Fuji Jari 2.1. Its a bit over my budget but may be able to stretch.. Or at the £1300 are there others I should be considering?
  • joe_totale-2
    joe_totale-2 Posts: 1,333
    At that price I'd want more than Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes.

    I'd wait for some Triban RC520's or Boardman ADV 8.9 to come back into stock. There's a gravel version of the Triban that would meet your needs and both bikes cost just under a grand.
  • At that price I'd want more than Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes.

    I'd wait for some Triban RC520's or Boardman ADV 8.9 to come back into stock. There's a gravel version of the Triban that would meet your needs and both bikes cost just under a grand.

    Are either of those likely to come back in to stock this year though as the shortage continues... :-(
  • joe_totale-2
    joe_totale-2 Posts: 1,333
    No idea, it'd be worth sending Decathlon or Halfords an email.
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523
    edited April 2021

    At that price I'd want more than Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes.

    It's really tough if you want a bike now. For one of the bigger brands, £1200 gets you Tiagra and basic mechanical discs - look at Cube Nuroad or Cross Race, Fuji Jari etc and they are similar spec.

    Ribble CGR Al gets you a similar spec for about £1k and looks like a good option.
    Cannondale topstone 4 is Microshift gears with mechanical disc for £1050.

    You mentioned the Fuji Jari - how about the Fuji Cross 1.3 which is reduced by £300. You get Apex 1x11, Mechanical discs - but the best ones TRP Spyre - and with 2% off from somewhere like Quidco, it will cost £1250 and it's available.
    I also think it looks really nice, but that's subjective.
  • singleton said:

    At that price I'd want more than Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes.

    It's really tough if you want a bike now. For one of the bigger brands, £1200 gets you Tiagra and basic mechanical discs - look at Cube Nuroad or Cross Race, Fuji Jari etc and they are similar spec.

    Ribble CGR Al gets you a similar spec for about £1k and looks like a good option.
    Cannondale topstone 4 is Microshift gears with mechanical disc for £1050.

    You mentioned the Fuji Jari - how about the Fuji Cross 1.3 which is reduced by £300. You get Apex 1x11, Mechanical discs - but the best ones TRP Spyre - and with 2% off from somewhere like Quidco, it will cost £1250 and it's available.
    I also think it looks really nice, but that's subjective.
    Hi, oh thanks for this - really helpful.

    I really like the look of the Fuji Cross 1.3 and assume by it being Cyclocross its similar to Gravel in that its fine for road use also?

    Where did you see it for that price and advertised with discount on Quidco?

    Would you see the Fuji Cross as one of the better options then given slightly increased budget?

    Thanks again.
  • joe_totale-2
    joe_totale-2 Posts: 1,333
    Instead of the Ribble CGR Al, how about the CX Al?

    https://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/ribble-cx-sram-apex-1x/

    £1,199 gets you Apex and hydraulic disc brakes.
    I have one to race CX on and it's good for that purpose as well as general off road riding. I have 38mm tyres on it right now and there's tons of room left, you could easily fit 40mm tyres in there which would be plenty big enough for the OP's intended purpose.

    Most importantly, it looks like all sizes aside from extra large are available.
  • Instead of the Ribble CGR Al, how about the CX Al?

    https://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/ribble-cx-sram-apex-1x/

    £1,199 gets you Apex and hydraulic disc brakes.
    I have one to race CX on and it's good for that purpose as well as general off road riding. I have 38mm tyres on it right now and there's tons of room left, you could easily fit 40mm tyres in there which would be plenty big enough for the OP's intended purpose.

    Most importantly, it looks like all sizes aside from extra large are available.

    Thanks, again looks like a really nice bike and I will put this on my short list.

    One question I do have as I seem to have moved over to Cyclocross instead of Gravel - but I am not really sure of the difference.. I understand Cyclocross is more for competition and shorter duration use unless I have got it wrong?

    Would a cyclocross bike still be suitable for road, paths, gravel paths and leisure riding etc?
  • nibnob21
    nibnob21 Posts: 207
    Generalisation incoming, but think of it like this in terms of aggressiveness of geometry:

    Road > Cyclocross > Gravel

    So a cyclocross is typically somewhere between a road bike and a gravel bike in terms of frame geometry. But both cyclocross and gravel bikes can be setup for road and gravel riding. Gravel bikes will typically have space for larger tyres but for the riding you're talking about a cyclocross should also give plenty of room for appropriate tyres.
  • So my shortlist seems to be the following:-

    Fuji Cross 1.3 - £1279
    Ribble CX - £1199
    Fuji Jari 2.1 - £1349

    Broadman ADV 8.9 - £1100 but not available to June/July :-(

    How does this look? I'm thinking the Cross 1.3 or Ribble CX ultimately.

    Any others I should be looking at for the money other than those already mentioned?
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523

    singleton said:

    At that price I'd want more than Tiagra and mechanical disc brakes.

    It's really tough if you want a bike now. For one of the bigger brands, £1200 gets you Tiagra and basic mechanical discs - look at Cube Nuroad or Cross Race, Fuji Jari etc and they are similar spec.

    Ribble CGR Al gets you a similar spec for about £1k and looks like a good option.
    Cannondale topstone 4 is Microshift gears with mechanical disc for £1050.

    You mentioned the Fuji Jari - how about the Fuji Cross 1.3 which is reduced by £300. You get Apex 1x11, Mechanical discs - but the best ones TRP Spyre - and with 2% off from somewhere like Quidco, it will cost £1250 and it's available.
    I also think it looks really nice, but that's subjective.
    Hi, oh thanks for this - really helpful.

    I really like the look of the Fuji Cross 1.3 and assume by it being Cyclocross its similar to Gravel in that its fine for road use also?

    Where did you see it for that price and advertised with discount on Quidco?

    Would you see the Fuji Cross as one of the better options then given slightly increased budget?

    Thanks again.
    Some questions have already been answered - CycloCross bikes were probably the original 'gravel' bikes but because they are used for racing, they need to fit the racing rules and are also designed for speed - so IMO they're ideal for road use.

    If you register for Quidco (or something else maybe) you can get an additional couple of precent off at Chain Reaction.

    Comparison between the 2 CX bikes:

    Ribble has hydro discs, and a broader 11-42 gear range. You can adjust the config if you want - just need to check availability.

    Fuji has TRP cable discs and a narrower, more road oriented 11-32 gear range.
  • With the comparison you have done then do I read it right that the Ribble is the better bike?
  • singleton
    singleton Posts: 2,523
    edited April 2021
    If it were my money, I'd probably lean towards the Ribble CX and upgrade the wheels for the extra £50 to the newer Mavic Allroad DCL 700C Wheelset.

    But it depends if they can get it to you in the timescale you need.
  • janwal
    janwal Posts: 489
    What size are you after? This large London road is on eBay. Says unused and built up with hydraulic Sram brakes.
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Planet-X-London-Road-SL-Gravel-Touring-Road-Commute-Bike-Apex-1x11-Hyd-Upgrade/274747037744?hash=item3ff8331830:g:NSsAAOSwFd9gasN6
  • janwal said:

    What size are you after? This large London road is on eBay. Says unused and built up with hydraulic Sram brakes.
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Planet-X-London-Road-SL-Gravel-Touring-Road-Commute-Bike-Apex-1x11-Hyd-Upgrade/274747037744?hash=item3ff8331830:g:NSsAAOSwFd9gasN6

    Thats a good buy, however unfortunately I would be looking for a small. Thanks for sharing the link though.
  • Medium frame ADV 8.9 is showing as available to order for collection next Monday ready built, with other frame sizes in the " bikes coming soon" section.

    Looked a bargain at £1k last summer before BC discount, still pretty good now at £1100 for GRX hydraulic disc brakes and in stock, must admit I didn't realise it was 31.6mm seatpost rather than 27.2mm (like the carbon ADV 9.0 which is out of stock) until last night.

    Anyone read the max tyre clearance with and without guards on these from a decent source?
    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo
  • joe_totale-2
    joe_totale-2 Posts: 1,333

    Medium frame ADV 8.9 is showing as available to order for collection next Monday ready built, with other frame sizes in the " bikes coming soon" section.

    Looked a bargain at £1k last summer before BC discount, still pretty good now at £1100 for GRX hydraulic disc brakes and in stock, must admit I didn't realise it was 31.6mm seatpost rather than 27.2mm (like the carbon ADV 9.0 which is out of stock) until last night.

    Anyone read the max tyre clearance with and without guards on these from a decent source?

    If it helps, Mrs Totale has popped mudguards over the stock 38mm tyres and there was plenty of room to do so, that's with a small frame.
  • Medium frame ADV 8.9 is showing as available to order for collection next Monday ready built, with other frame sizes in the " bikes coming soon" section.

    Looked a bargain at £1k last summer before BC discount, still pretty good now at £1100 for GRX hydraulic disc brakes and in stock, must admit I didn't realise it was 31.6mm seatpost rather than 27.2mm (like the carbon ADV 9.0 which is out of stock) until last night.

    Anyone read the max tyre clearance with and without guards on these from a decent source?


    Hi, I guess my worry is with the medium ADV 8.9 is that I am only 5' 6.5" with an inside leg of 75cm (approx 29") and that it would be too big and uncomfortable.

    If anyone feels to the contrary then please let me know as its good price and a good bike. The small is out of stock until July.
  • If it helps, Mrs Totale has popped mudguards over the stock 38mm tyres and there was plenty of room to do so, that's with a small frame.

    Missed your reply, thanks for that.

    Seems the marketing blurb weight for the ADV 8.9 is distorting the truth a bit more than normal for Halfords, in that the quoted 10.5Kg is for the small without pedals, the medium appears to be more like ~11.3Kg from the odd comment I've found around the web (seems a bit odd to me that this 2021 version still hasn't had a review at a "big" site yet).

    ~11.3Kg for the medium sounds quite portly to me, given I was able to run my Voodoo Wazoo fatbike with a heavy ~2.3Kg 29er wheelset and still weigh ~10.7Kg with a set of 38mm tyres fitted!
    This was after fitting a carbon fork; carbon bars; spare saddle (Spoon); foam grips.

    Is the weight in those wheels, or is the supplied finishing kit heavy too?

    The orange ADV 8.9 is now available again to collect next week in M and L (as is the S CXR 8.9 that might interest the OP), part of me is very tempted, but the finance director may go off her rocker at another bike and the discomfort I felt on my few South Downs rides so far this year may simply be down to a user excess "spare tyre" issue and not finding suitable tyre pressure for 32mm rubber... Plus I did like the specs of the ADV 9.0 that didn't stay in stock long a few months back!

    ================
    2020 Voodoo Marasa
    2017 Cube Attain GTC Pro Disc 2016
    2016 Voodoo Wazoo


  • The orange ADV 8.9 is now available again to collect next week in M and L (as is the S CXR 8.9 that might interest the OP), part of me is very tempted, but the finance director may go off her rocker at another bike and the discomfort I felt on my few South Downs rides so far this year may simply be down to a user excess "spare tyre" issue and not finding suitable tyre pressure for 32mm rubber... Plus I did like the specs of the ADV 9.0 that didn't stay in stock long a few months back!

    From your experiences would the ADV 8.9 in M be too big for a 5' 6" person with 29" inside leg? you can't get to try these bikes these days as they are all in a warehouse somewhere.