Hello. New to Singletrack. Sure this has been asked before but couldn't find similar threads in the 'search'.
I'm looking for a new bike for my commute to work. I currently ride a very old, mistreated, Raleigh with a heavy steel frame. Think it's a hybrid (which I gather is akin to swearing for some, sorry) but its finally giving out. The crank barely fits in the frame; and just the other day the gear cable, for the back 7 gears, snapped. I now do ten miles (there and back) five days a week, so want something that'll put the fun back into the commute, as well as make it a bit quicker, ideally.
I live in Cambridge, so the ride is very flat and, generally, on well maintained bike paths/pavements. Cycling friends say I should get a road bike but I feel a bit of a fraud. A bit like buying a dragster for your granny. I've looked at Mango bikes (on another thread) as I've been totally seduced by the visual appeal - and I know nothing about bikes. It should have wheels and brakes is about the sum of my knowledge.
Talked to a salesman in my local Giant shop who steeered me towards a Rapid: http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-gb/bikes/model/2013.giant.rapid.4/11834/56812/ - which is about my price point.
Have read about the 'Halfruads' Boardman's. I dont want drop handlebars, so looked at this, a hybrid (that word again!) http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_storeId_10001_catalogId_10151_productId_992052_langId_-1_categoryId_165534 Disc brakes are, I'm assuming, better? More expensive to maintain though? I've replaced a brake block before but that's about my DIY limit.
Read lots of recommendations of Decathlon's Tribans but my nearest Decathlon is a fair way away.
Anyone have any advice? Or own any of the above?
Thanks on advance.