1st road bike – is 20yrs of mtb blurring my vision?
I’m buying my 1st road bike for a bit of winter and summer training – it’ll only be used on the road for 40-60mile rides and the occasional 80-100 mile ride.
I’ve up to a grand to spend (cycle2work) but every bike I’ve been drawn to has been a cyclocross bike, mainly because to my mtb biased eyes they look great but this is completely the wrong approach.
So what should I be looking for in a road bike? unfortunately getting a test ride will be very difficult (as its cycle2work).
I have a choice of the following brands:Posted 4 years ago
Kona, GT, Cannondale, Cube, Willier, Scott, Genesis, Orbea, Felt, Specialized, Giant, Charge, Whyte, Trek, Merida, Focus, Saracen, Moda, Raleigh, oh and Boardman….tomkertonMember
Snap, was presented with exactly the situation you describe when the cycle to work scheme opened up at my work! However I didn’t have your strength of mind and went with the easy option. I pick up my Cannondale CAADX (and a pair of GP 4 seasons to swap onto them) tomorrow!Posted 4 years ago
I got a road bike about 2 years ago, IMO mountain biking in great scenery is usually a better day out but going downhill at 50 mph is still a huge buzz 😀
At that price and above, most companies make a more ‘race orientated bike’ (Although still nowhere near as racey as a pro bike) and a more comfortable ‘sportive’ orientated bike. The difference being in the frame geometries. So for example Cannondale do the Caad 8 (race) and the Synapse (comfort).
Cannondale arguably still have some of the best (if not the best) alumminium frames. They hold their value very well too. (Check out the old Caad 9 frames on ebay, they still fetch high prices compared to competition). I think their geometry is spot on too. That’d be my choice although if you don’t mind having the Ford Focus of the bike world and want good value parts and frame for the price then a Boardman is good but they are a bit… boring.
Other are fine, nothing wrong with Giant – good for the money. Merida are a huge company but strangely not that well known over here, they actually make Specialized frames(!) Don’t bother with Whyte, Saracen or Charge.Posted 4 years ago
mmmmm, TBH will probably end up with the ‘boring’ option of the Boardman, i’d been speaking with colleagues and, although not impossible its difficult to get the ‘other’ brands – cant see the point in spending the extra £300 on the new carbon Team so will end up with the sport….
Which leads me on to my next question – will I get away with spending the remaining money on shoes, pedals, mudguards, and a £180 jacket? the guide lines say ‘reflective clothing’Posted 4 years ago
Using the ford focus analogy above isn’t it the case of that you won’t really go wrong with any of them. Whether it’s a dacia or a merc you’ll get from a to b. If you are not coming from the merc you wont know what you are missing.Posted 4 years ago
Who is your scheme with? Getting a test ride shouldn’t be a problem or do you have a small window to apply? One you get the voucher you’ll have a bit of time to spend it.
From the sound of it the scheme is the halfords one, when they first started you could get pretty much any brand but the last time my company used them it had to be from there stock.Posted 4 years ago
As long as the jacket had done element of reflective material you’ll be fine (you’ll probably be fine even if it hadn’t)
From the cyclesche website on allowed accessories (you might have trouble with shoes). Bear in mind it’s governed by HRMC rules not common sense.:
What safety equipment is allowed?
Allowable safety equipment includes:
Cycle helmetsPosted 4 years ago
Lights, including dynamo packs
Mirrors and mudguards to ensure riders visibility is not impaired
Cycle clips and dress guards
Panniers, luggage carriers and straps to allow luggage to be safely carried
Child safety seats
Locks and chains to ensure cycle can be safely secured
Pumps, puncture repair kits, cycle tool kits and tyre sealant to allow for minor repairs
Reflective clothing along with white front reflectors and spoke reflectorsandypaul99Member
+1 on Merida, seriously underrated bikes in my humble op, gping from a mtb to road i would definately go down the cyclocross route. One thing i found when out on my road bike is covering big miles, finding paths and bridleways i didnt know existed, and therfore dying to check them out, but with the road bike not having the tool for the job. Ive got a cross bike now and just finding i can explore more, just call it reconissence for the mtb 🙂Posted 4 years agodevashMember
Cannondale CAADX – perfect for commuting.
Unless you are planning on getting into racing a cyclocross-style frame is absolutely perfect for commuting.
The wider tyres / comfier geometry are perfect for our pothole-laden roads.
Picked up a Speccy Tricross 2 years ago and love it to bits but the CAADX is next on my list :0)Posted 4 years agoscaredypantsSubscriber
cross bikes allow bigger tyres and mudguards – both great for commuting
IME, riding a cross bike on anything but really smooth offroad tracks is a pain in the, well, everything so I’d say only buy a cross bike if you’re happy NOT trailriding on it (a 29er with 1.9 semi-slicks would be much nicer for that)
I suspect I’m in a minority round here but there you go – I’ll not ride my cross frame offroad again
(Edit: I did read the OP honest, but I think most people assume they’ll ride cx bikes offroad too)Posted 4 years agoheadpotdogMember
I got a Giant Defy 1 on cycle to work scheme about a month ago & am absolutely loving it. I’ve got absolutely no prior experience of road bikes until now, but it handles & climbs well goes as fast as my legs will take it & is comfy too. For a first road bike I can’t ask for more.Posted 4 years ago
Certainly the 105 and Mavic Askiums on the Boardman make it great for the money. Can’t really argue with that build for the money. The Boardman CXs are darn good for the money too but seem to be cracking a lot according to that other thread.
Getting it from Halfords, maybe you can join British Cycling for whatever it is (£18/20 something) and get a further 10% off, enabling you spend more on the jacket etc.Posted 4 years ago
riddoc – the cycle to work scheme is the cycle2work version – you can buy from the brands I listed above, phone them up, they order the bike (through the distributor I assume) and its delivered to your local halford’s for collection with the voucher. However I’ve heard that it does take more time and effort that just walking into a Halfords with the voucher.
If I go for a cheaper bike and accessories or go for a full 1k bike will be interesting – i’m pretty sure pedals shouldn’t be on there either, but it’d be pretty stupid if they weren’t as some bikes come without pedals. I will phone them up on Monday and see what’s possible, as I have some other questions – for example when the hire period is over do the accessories come under the 25% buy off option?
On other schemes, you could buy pretty much what you wanted – but there seem to be more restrictions on the Halfords / cycle2work scheme.Posted 4 years agomartymacSubscriber
i could be wrong here, but im sure some independent shops can take the cyclscheme vouchers, so you may not be tied to the listed brands.Posted 4 years ago
also, you may be riding this bike for a decade, thats a long time to ‘make do’ with something thats not quite right imo, take your time deciding.TiRedMember
Giant and Boardman are quite different, ride, geometry, comfort. Both superb value.
They aren’t that different. Boardman bikes “share” Giant TCR geometry. And TCR geometry is not that dissimilar to the TCR. (Half a degree head angle and a cm on top tube). When set up the same, you would not notice the difference between a Defy and a TCR.
I’d go for either the Defy or, if you must, a CAADX.Posted 4 years agodamascusMember
I’m a mountain biker that commutes to work. I run a cx bike as it takes mudguards, racks, wider Tyres and disc brakes.
If you are riding on your own or you are stronger than the people you ride with then go ahead and buy a cx bike. They are great and much more fun.
However, they are slower IMO then a road bike as they are heavier and have different geometry. They do make a great winter bike.
The best cx on the r2w scheme must be the planet x XLS.
There are a few road disc bikes coming out. Have a look at the canyon website.Posted 4 years ago
When halfords first started the cycle2work scheme I got a specilized tricross, as it was a special order you had to get the sizing right as I don’t think they accepted returns.
The second bike through the scheme was a Boardman and there was no problem with getting pedals and shoes. They had stopped doing special orders by that point.
I think more recently HRMC have been more restrictive as people were taking the piss.Posted 4 years ago
Just spoke to cycle2work apparently the 10% off scruff9252hrough British cycling should not be applied to c2w vouchers – im guessing its down to the compitence of the person putting it through the till.
Definitely going for the Dolan – thanks again to scruff for that spot as its not particularly well known – does mean I wont be getting any accessories though.Posted 4 years agofaustusSubscriber
Giants and Boardmans are probably great bikes, but very dull and every other bugger has one. I use a cx bike as a commuter/road bike (Pinnacle Arkose 3) and it does pretty well. It is heavier than a road bike and not as ‘sporty’, but is comfortable, adaptable, and most importantly has disc brakes. Better for commuting as you have a bigger choice of tyres and guards/racks..Posted 4 years agoahwilesSubscriber
with a C2W budget, i’d be looking at the specialized secteur disc.
don’t completely ignore your mtb senses, disc brakes are bloody brilliant, the sora groupset on the secteur is very under-rated.
(the biggest downside is that the crankset is a whopping 100grams heavier than 105)
there’s room for proper tyres and mudguards too.Posted 4 years agoIanWMember
Giant TCR composite 1099Posted 4 years ago
Giant Defy composite 1099 takes mudguards.
Spech Allez Race 1300
Kinesis tk3 1150 very versatile
Genesis equilibrium 1000 – 1300 as above
Cannondale caad8 105 1100? Takes mudguards.
Random bike on offer ie felts on wiggle with full carbon fork 1100
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