Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 25 of 25
  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Fairly new to cycling, need some bike advice

    So i think I've gotten to the point where I've read so much, that I've confused myself.

    me: 250ish, 5'9, former powerlifter-turned-too-many-surgery-guy. Road BMX when I was younger, been awhile since I've really rode hard, but recently got back into it with a Trek 820 (yeah yeah I know) and remembered just how much I love being on a bike.

    What I'm looking for is (an upgrade from my Trek 820) that meets the following qualifications:

    1. Good road bike - I use it to commute 16+ miles to and from work (Sometimes only 1 way, I do taekwondo 3x per week), and about 14 of those 16.4 miles is on a paved road
    2. I did say "about 14 of 16.4" are paved. The other 2.4? Gravel, dirt, divots, mud, etc.
    3. Rugged. I'm a Clyde, and as a youth (yoot?) I did a good bit of BMXing so I have this tendency to not always avoid the divots or the rougher terrain
    4. I would like to do some off-roading with it, although I'm not real interested (nor talented enough) to do much in the way of downhill or really technical singletrack

    So I'm kinda torn between the cyclocross, touring and hybrid options. Now, from what I've read, a hybrid isn't the 'best of both worlds', it's more the worst of both worlds. With that in mind, I've gotten to the point where I've found a few bikes that seem to meet my criteria, but I don't know enough to compare them other than "ooh, pretty bike"

    so some of the bikes I think seem to fit what I'm looking for, but not sure what points of comparison to really focus on. I'm also not always sure how to tell the difference between road, cyclocross, touring, and mtnb, since it seems some of the bikes I picked out definitely blur some lines:

    Surly Ogre: Ogre | Bikes | Surly Bikes

    Salsa Fargo 3: Fargo 3 | Bikes | Salsa Cycles

    Kona Jake the Snake: KONA BIKES | 2015 BIKES | CYCLOCROSS | JAKE THE SNAKE

    Cannondale CAADX: CAADX Disc 5 105 - CAADX - Cyclocross - ROAD - BIKES - 2014

    Specialized Crux: Specialized Bicycle Components

    now, those are examples I've found that I like. I don't know a ton of bicycle types and I'm looking mainly at what I can buy in a LBS within a 2-3 hour drive of my house. I look at the Surly Ogre and the Fargo 3 and they look like mountain bikes yet are described as 'touring' bikes. I look at the Specialized and Cannondale and they look like straight road bikes to me. My eye is obviously untrained. I appreciate any help in really learning to focus on the differences, ESPECIALLY if you use riding specific terms and acronyms that I can google easily.

  2. #2
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Whittier, CA
    My Bikes
    Specialized Roubaix, Merlin Road, Bianchi Campione
    Posts
    7,698
    Mentioned
    34 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Well, the last 3 are more your classic cross bikes. I don't have one, so take anything I say with a grain of salt, but the chief differences are usually larger tires (knobby!), smaller cranks (road bikes generally have a 53 or 50 tooth large chainring, cross bikes usually have a 46 or so), disk brakes or cantilever style brakes for bigger rims & sloppy conditions and then the cables are generally run across the top tube to keep them out of the mud. A cross bike would be great for road riding or some light "terrain" riding, including gravel or dirt roads. The geometry is usually pretty similar to a road bike.

    The first two look like straight up hybrids to me.

    Pick one or two that suits your purpose, looks awesome and then go test ride it to make sure. Happy hunting!

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    109
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Jake the Snake - great bike. I wouldn't buy new, though... lots of great used bikes out there.

  4. #4
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    My Bikes
    2012 Salsa Casseroll, 1997 Bianchi Advantage, 1994 Trek 930.
    Posts
    2,020
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I would add the Salsa Vaya, Surly Cross Check, All City Space Horse and the Giant Any Road to your short list. Whether you ultimately choose something closer to a road bike, a cyclocross bike, a hybrid, or a light touring bike is really up to you and your riding style. (that said, now that you are a little older and plan to use your bike more for transport than recreation, you may want to consider a more conservative riding style than that favored in your BXX youth) Any of them will likely get the job done. A lot may depend on just how rough that last 2 miles of your commute are. Rough enough to need a mountain bike? Maybe post a picture or short video.
    Last edited by MRT2; 08-26-14 at 06:53 AM.

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    Well, the last 3 are more your classic cross bikes.... <snip>...Pick one or two that suits your purpose, looks awesome and then go test ride it to make sure. Happy hunting!
    hey, thanks a ton, great info!

    Quote Originally Posted by The B View Post
    Jake the Snake - great bike. I wouldn't buy new, though... lots of great used bikes out there.
    I had a LBS who treats me right, I'll probably still go to those guys and buy new to give them support (and to get the 10% military discount and great service assistance! )

    Quote Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
    I would add the Salsa Vaya, Surly Cross Check, All City Space Horse and the Giant Any Road to your short list. Whether you ultimately choose something closer to a road bike, a cyclocross bike, a hybrid, or a light touring bike is really up to you and your riding style. (that said, now that you are a little older and plan to use your bike more for transport than recreation, you may want to consider a more conservative riding style than that favored in your BXX youth) Any of them will likely get the job done. A lot may depend on just how rough that last 2 miles of your commute are. Rough enough to need a mountain bike? Maybe post a picture or short video.
    woof...ok, gotta admit, that Giant Anyroad and the Salsa Vaya made my nostrils flare...those are some schweet looking bikes. My brother is a huge Surly fan, but with the curved front forks and skinny tires, it looks more like a road bike to my (again, entirely untrained) eyes

    as for my riding style, it's already a lot more conservative, but I don't want to be worried that I'm going to break the thing if I hop a curb (if for no reason other than me being a bit of a klutz).

    i'll try to find a video that has similar style terrain. God bless youtube....

    hey everyone, thanks a ton for the replies!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,470
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    any of the bikes you listed
    as well as the suggestions from other posters
    will be perfectly fine
    none of them will snap if you hit a pothole too hard

    the one thing that you will have to put some thought into
    is wheels
    as the wheels take the most pounding of all the bike parts

    and even then
    all of the bikes will be perfectly ridable straight out of the shop
    with no extra attention paid to the wheels
    but after a month or two or six
    it is likely spokes will start popping
    and then it will be time to do something

    so my advice is
    find the bike on which you are most comfortable
    and
    if the wheels are less than 32 spoke
    have a set of 32 or 36 spoke wheels built
    and sell the low spoke count wheels
    or keep them as spares or something
    but if the wheels have 32 or more spokes
    get the lbs or a trusted wheelbuilder to hand tension and stress relieve them
    and keep an eye on them for the first few hundred miles

    also
    consider getting fatter tires
    tires are your first line of defence
    against road hazards
    fatter tires give more of a cushion between the sharp edge of a pothole
    and your rim
    and most or all of the bikes mentioned above
    can fit significantly fatter tires that what come stock

    and to put this in perspective
    i weigh 244 lbs
    according to the scale at the drs office this morning
    my commute is similar to yours
    but the proportions of dirt and ashphalt
    are inverted
    i have 5 km of bad paved roads
    then 8 km of gravel road
    and i comfortably ride a touring bike
    with 38mm wide tires
    and havent had a broken spoke in years

  7. #7
    Senior Member Jarrett2's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Waxahachie, TX
    My Bikes
    2014 Specialized Roubaix SL4 Elite - 2013 Specialized Secteur Expert Disc
    Posts
    418
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've only ridden the Crux out of that list and liked it a lot. But the Cannondale seems to give you more for the money than the Specialized. The 105 groupset on the Cannondale is much nicer than the Sora on the Specialized.

    I used to ride flat bar bikes but got to where I preferred the drop bars. So I sold my Trek DS 8.3 (looked like the first two) and basically turned one of my road bikes into a cross bike. I just like the drop bars and riding position more than the bars/position on the hybrids. Personal preference though.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Black wallnut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Ellensburg,WA
    My Bikes
    Schwinn Broadway, Specialized Secteur Sport(crashed) Spec. Roubaix Sport, Spec. Crux
    Posts
    1,534
    Mentioned
    8 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Differences in tires and chainsets has already been mentioned. Cross bikes also seem to come with stronger wheelsets.


    Mark

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Time & Space
    My Bikes
    3 good used ones
    Posts
    1,109
    Mentioned
    16 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hybrids are great for heavy guys riding bumpy roads or gravel. Mine is indestructible. My road bike, OTOH, needs a new rear wheel every 4-5 years, and I'm riding mostly on paved paths, seeing bumpy roads less than 5% of the time. 2000-3000 miles per year.

    The hybrid is still on its original wheels going on 15 years now. It's my winter and off-road short-cut bike. I also tow a trailer with it. So, it gets a tremendous amount of abuse.

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
    -the one thing that you will have to put some thought into is wheels as the wheels take the most pounding of all the bike parts

    -also consider getting fatter tires

    - i comfortably ride a touring bike with 38mm wide tires and havent had a broken spoke in years
    great stuff, thanks a ton! if I might ask, which type of bike is your touring bike, and do you have preferences for wheel/tire brands?

    Quote Originally Posted by baron von trail View Post
    The hybrid is still on its original wheels going on 15 years now. It's my winter and off-road short-cut bike. I also tow a trailer with it. So, it gets a tremendous amount of abuse.
    that's pretty impressive. what kind of bike is your hybrid?


    2 questions I have that haven't really been mentioned:

    1. frame type - if my I understand what I've been reading, a steel frame will be ideal for me because it is rugged, sturdy, but won't beat on my body as much as aluminum. Yes?

    2. forks - so some bikes have curved forks, some have straight forks. I assume that the curved forks are for far less rugged rides than the standard straight forks?

    i.e. for example:

    Surly Crosscheck (curved fork): Cross-Check | Bikes | Surly Bikes
    Giant Anyroad (far less curved): http://www.giant-bicycles.com/_gener...ad-1-Black.jpg
    Salsa Fargo 3 (straight, mtbk-like fork): Fargo 3 | Bikes | Salsa Cycles

    so is it a wise thing for me to shoot for the more "mountain bike-y" type fork of the Fargo 3, or am I overthinking this too much?

    once again, thanks a ton. SO glad I found this place!

  11. #11
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    My Bikes
    2012 Salsa Casseroll, 1997 Bianchi Advantage, 1994 Trek 930.
    Posts
    2,020
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    great stuff, thanks a ton! if I might ask, which type of bike is your touring bike, and do you have preferences for wheel/tire brands?



    that's pretty impressive. what kind of bike is your hybrid?


    2 questions I have that haven't really been mentioned:

    1. frame type - if my I understand what I've been reading, a steel frame will be ideal for me because it is rugged, sturdy, but won't beat on my body as much as aluminum. Yes?

    2. forks - so some bikes have curved forks, some have straight forks. I assume that the curved forks are for far less rugged rides than the standard straight forks?

    i.e. for example:

    Surly Crosscheck (curved fork): Cross-Check | Bikes | Surly Bikes
    Giant Anyroad (far less curved): http://www.giant-bicycles.com/_gener...ad-1-Black.jpg
    Salsa Fargo 3 (straight, mtbk-like fork): Fargo 3 | Bikes | Salsa Cycles

    so is it a wise thing for me to shoot for the more "mountain bike-y" type fork of the Fargo 3, or am I overthinking this too much?

    once again, thanks a ton. SO glad I found this place!
    not necessarily. A curved fork will lengthen the wheelbase slightly (therefore be slightly more stable) and will give a slightly more forgiving ride, other things being equal.

  12. #12
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
    not necessarily. A curved fork will lengthen the wheelbase slightly (therefore be slightly more stable) and will give a slightly more forgiving ride, other things being equal.
    wow, no kidding? Thanks, I had no idea. Always figured the curved fork meant a weaker fork than the straighter ones

  13. #13
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    My Bikes
    2012 Salsa Casseroll, 1997 Bianchi Advantage, 1994 Trek 930.
    Posts
    2,020
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    wow, no kidding? Thanks, I had no idea. Always figured the curved fork meant a weaker fork than the straighter ones
    My wife has a Peugeot touring bike with curved fork. Components are worn out but the fork is fine. She bought it in 1978.

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    61
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    hey, thanks a ton, great info!



    I had a LBS who treats me right, I'll probably still go to those guys and buy new to give them support (and to get the 10% military discount and great service assistance! )



    woof...ok, gotta admit, that Giant Anyroad and the Salsa Vaya made my nostrils flare...those are some schweet looking bikes.

    hey everyone, thanks a ton for the replies!

    I haven't bought my bike yet and still looking but i have test rode the Vaya 3 and the All City Space Horse and I can't tell you how much I was in love with the Vaya 3. It's so comfortable and very relaxed geometry. I have never ridden a bike with drop bars and can say I had no problem riding with my hands in any position. Now it didn't ride as fast or as snappy as the synaspe but I also didn't feel every bump in the road like like the synaspe. Just sitting on the idea of buying a 1500 bike...

  15. #15
    Senior Member Willbird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Very N and Very W Ohio Williams Co.
    My Bikes
    2001 Trek Multitrack 7200
    Posts
    385
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have a 2001 Trek 7200 Hybrid myself. The definition of "hybrid"......has maybe changed a little since it was made in 2001. It will run 700x38c tires (I have 700x35 specialized nimbus on it right now)...it is an aluminum frame with a steel non suspension fork. Stock it was 28/38/48 up front and 11-34 in the back. I swapped in a 12-26 cassette.

    If I was going to do more off road stuff I'd put the 11-34 back on probably...but it grinds gravel decent with the 12-26 :-).

    The wheels on those bikes are bombproof I think, I started riding it at 286 and am 236 now and have about 1200 miles on it since June 1 2014 and have not touched the wheels.

  16. #16
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Willbird View Post
    I have a 2001 Trek 7200 Hybrid myself....I started riding it at 286 and am 236 now and have about 1200 miles on it since June 1 2014 and have not touched the wheels.
    1200 miles in under 90 days? Nice pace!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Willbird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Very N and Very W Ohio Williams Co.
    My Bikes
    2001 Trek Multitrack 7200
    Posts
    385
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    1200 miles in under 90 days? Nice pace!
    Yea it has really been fun so far :-).

    I was walking at first for about a month but killed my right knee, runners knee probably. Built some aerobic base walking, did 10k walking a few times.....was down in the 13 minute miles. Adding in a little jogging, and some downhill, plus 6000 steps and lots of stairs at work probably set me up for the knee injury.

    Started riding June first.
    June 310.9 miles (goal was 200, revised to 300) Weighed 279.6 lbs
    July 521.5 miles, 100k one day 4th of july weekend
    August 379 so far, on track for 500+ but far more structure now.234.8 lbs today (-44.8 since being recycled)
    Probably will do another 100k day Labor day weekend, or 75mi depending on how it goes :-).

    I call getting into riding again "being recycled" because I have had two other "episodes" of cycling in my lifetime...this one I will try to make it a permanent part of "me" :-).

    May 1-2014 I weighed 304 lbs at the Dr. office, today 234.8. January 1 2015 I hope to be sub 200, by the end of April I am shooting for 160 :-). If it takes longer that will be AOK too :-)....but I am very goal oriented :-).

    Bill

  18. #18
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,470
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
    not necessarily. A curved fork will lengthen the wheelbase slightly (therefore be slightly more stable) ... other things being equal.
    not true at all

    all forks put the axle in front of the steering axis
    straight forks angle forward from the crown
    while curved forks are curved forward

    some forks have more foward offset
    called rake
    than others
    but you cant tell by the curve or lack of

    and a further raked fork does not result in a more stable ride
    quite the opposite
    a fork with more rake
    all other things being equal
    reduces a dimension called trail
    and less trail = less stable

    edit
    Quote Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
    not necessarily. A curved fork will ... give a slightly more forgiving ride, other things being equal.
    kind of true
    as the curved fork
    although it will have very similar rake to a straight fork
    will be very slightly longer
    and therefore very slightly less stiff
    Last edited by Wilfred Laurier; 08-27-14 at 06:50 AM.

  19. #19
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Willbird View Post
    May 1-2014 I weighed 304 lbs at the Dr. office, today 234.8. January 1 2015 I hope to be sub 200, by the end of April I am shooting for 160 :-). If it takes longer that will be AOK too :-)....but I am very goal oriented :-).
    that's great stuff Bill, great stuff!

    Quote Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
    a fork with more rake
    all other things being equal
    reduces a dimension called trail
    and less trail = less stable

    edit


    kind of true
    as the curved fork
    although it will have very similar rake to a straight fork
    will be very slightly longer
    and therefore very slightly less stiff
    oh goodness...smell something burning? that's my brain.

    Ok, so let me revisit...

    using these bikes PURELY as examples (looking *only* at the fork shapes)


    Fork has more prominent forward "rake" (?), wheel pronounced forward: Cross-Check | Bikes | Surly Bikes
    Fork has small forward "rake" (?), wheel slightly forward: Revolt 1 (2014) | Giant Bicycles | United States
    Fork is straight, front wheel inline: Salsa Vaya 3 - Freewheel Bike Shop - Minneapolis - Twin Cities - St. Paul

    again, ignoring construction, quality of the bikes themselves, components, etc, focusing purely on the "geometrical concept", the more prominent forward "rake" will provide a slightly more forgiving ride but be slightly less stable, while the straight fork will be a bit less forgiving but more stable?

    do I follow? Is this "stability on bouncy divots/gravel/dirt" or "stability on downhill road doing about 30 MPH"?

    also, anybody have feedback re: steel v. aluminum v. titanium v. carbon (ha! yeah right, carbon!)
    Titanium and carbon are probably out of my price range. I can't justify spending all that extra cash based purely on 'it's lighter!'. I'm a bit of a chubby, I could use the tougher workout from the heavier material, and frmo what i've read, steel will last as long, if not longer, than the other 3 and give the most forgiving ride.

    on a side note, I'm pretty happy. I made the 16.5 mile ride from home to work in 58 minutes, which is nearly 17 minutes faster than the first time I rode the exact same route 2 weeks ago. This was my 5th ride to work (ridden home 3 times too) so 8 rides later, I cut 17 minutes off my original 75 minute time. HA! On a Trek 820. It's quite obvious that bike is NOT designed to hold a 250-lber for 16+ miles in the saddle. Seat always ends up a good inch lower by the end of the ride, and I have CUH-RANKED the seatpost thing really tight. I have to use one of my gloves as padding against the quick-release and pound it with my other fist to get it to close fully.

    That, and I think the frame is a bit too small for me. I get the best seated power output by putting my butt WAY back in the saddle (almost behind it) instead of properly aligned in the saddle. ah well, it's my first bike in 20 years and I'm having fun with it. I knew I'd outgrow it, that's why I went cheap with the first bike.
    Last edited by sgtrobo; 08-27-14 at 07:36 AM.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    61
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    Seat always ends up a good inch lower by the end of the ride, and I have CUH-RANKED the seatpost thing really tight. I have to use one of my gloves as padding against the quick-release and pound it with my other fist to get it to close fully.
    I had this same problem on my bike. I would lock it as tight as possible and then by the end of the ride, it was at the bottom. I did find a solution. On my bike at least, there is the ability to tighten it more with a hex wrench. I found using the hex wrench makes it a lot tighter and now it doesn't go anywhere. Give it a try if you have the ability. Worked for me

  21. #21
    Senior Member MRT2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Wisconsin
    My Bikes
    2012 Salsa Casseroll, 1997 Bianchi Advantage, 1994 Trek 930.
    Posts
    2,020
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by salreus View Post
    I had this same problem on my bike. I would lock it as tight as possible and then by the end of the ride, it was at the bottom. I did find a solution. On my bike at least, there is the ability to tighten it more with a hex wrench. I found using the hex wrench makes it a lot tighter and now it doesn't go anywhere. Give it a try if you have the ability. Worked for me
    Or replace the QR with a non QR.

  22. #22
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    My Bikes
    Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB
    Posts
    5,036
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    I appreciate any help in really learning to focus on the differences, ESPECIALLY if you use riding specific terms and acronyms that I can google easily.
    It seems like people in this thread have given you quite a few facts and opinions, but nobody is really helping you make a decision on what to buy... So here's my take on the situation:

    If you're going to be riding regularly on dirt roads I would avoid road bikes with skinny tires and drop handlebars. The Cannondale Synapse and Specialized Secteur are good examples of this kind of bike. They can be ridden off-road, but the skinny tires (ex: 700c x 23mm) don't provide a whole lot of traction and stability when things get dirty. Also, the frames really aren't designed to handle big impacts from off-road obstacles.

    If you're going to be riding regularly on dirt roads, you should probably consider a bike with higher-volume tires. If the bike uses the 700c wheel size popular with road bikes, I would suggest using a 700c x 30mm or larger tire. For mountain bike wheels (26", 27.5" a.k.a 650B, 29" a.k.a. 29er) I would suggest a tire that's at least 1.75" wide.

    If you use high-volume tires, frame material almost doesn't matter. Yes, everybody says that aluminum bikes ride harshly. If you're using an aluminum frame, an aluminum fork, and a skinny 700x20 tire inflated to 120psi you will get a harsh ride. Larger tires inflated to a lower pressure will greatly reduce the harshness of the ride, since the tire will soak up more of the small bumps and road imperfections. My aluminum touring bike floats across the pavement on 700x35 tires inflated to 70psi and is nearly as comfortable as my mountain bike.

    Decide whether you want flat (mountain bike-style) or curved drop (road racing-style) handlebars. You may need to test-ride bikes of both types to make this determination! When riding on-road, I greatly prefer drop bars because they allow me to get into a more aerodynamic position and cheat the wind a bit. Off-road, I greatly prefer the more upright seating position and wide grip provided by flat, mountain bike-style handlebars. If the dirt roads you plan to ride are relatively flat, the handlebar shape and position might not make much difference. When descending sketchy dirt roads, however, I find the face down/butt up riding position offered by many drop bar bikes doesn't inspire much confidence.

    You also need to think about how much stuff you want to carry on the bike. If you're planning to commute on the bike and will need to attach racks and panniers, then you may want the longer, more stable wheelbase afforded by a road touring bike (Surly Long Haul Trucker, Soma Saga, Salsa Vaya, Trek 520) or an off-road/adventure touring bike (Surly Ogre, Salsa Fargo). If you won't need to carry much stuff attached to the bike then the shorter wheelbase and more nimble handling of a cyclocross bike (Specialized Cruz, Trek Crossrip, Cannondale CAADX) may appeal to you.

    Finally, if you plan to ride off-road in inclement weather (read: rain) I would strongly urge you to consider buying a bike that can use disc brakes. In my experience, disc brakes provide much more consistent stopping power in wet/muddy conditions than rim brakes.

  23. #23
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    My Bikes
    Cervelo RS, Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Pro, Schwinn Typhoon, Nashbar touring, custom steel MTB
    Posts
    5,036
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    It's quite obvious that bike is NOT designed to hold a 250-lber for 16+ miles in the saddle. Seat always ends up a good inch lower by the end of the ride, and I have CUH-RANKED the seatpost thing really tight. I have to use one of my gloves as padding against the quick-release and pound it with my other fist to get it to close fully.
    Congratulations! You're well on your way to breaking your seatpost quick release, the seatpost clamp, or the frame itself! If your seatpost won't stay in place, I would suggest applying some assembly paste rather than CUH-RANKING it down as tight as possible...

  24. #24
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    1,470
    Mentioned
    4 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by sgtrobo View Post
    that's great stuff Bill, great stuff!



    oh goodness...smell something burning? that's my brain.

    Ok, so let me revisit...

    using these bikes PURELY as examples (looking *only* at the fork shapes)


    Fork has more prominent forward "rake" (?), wheel pronounced forward: Cross-Check | Bikes | Surly Bikes
    Fork has small forward "rake" (?), wheel slightly forward: Revolt 1 (2014) | Giant Bicycles | United States
    Fork is straight, front wheel inline: Salsa Vaya 3 - Freewheel Bike Shop - Minneapolis - Twin Cities - St. Paul

    again, ignoring construction, quality of the bikes themselves, components, etc, focusing purely on the "geometrical concept", the more prominent forward "rake" will provide a slightly more forgiving ride but be slightly less stable, while the straight fork will be a bit less forgiving but more stable?

    do I follow? Is this "stability on bouncy divots/gravel/dirt" or "stability on downhill road doing about 30 MPH"?

    also, anybody have feedback re: steel v. aluminum v. titanium v. carbon (ha! yeah right, carbon!)
    Titanium and carbon are probably out of my price range. I can't justify spending all that extra cash based purely on 'it's lighter!'. I'm a bit of a chubby, I could use the tougher workout from the heavier material, and frmo what i've read, steel will last as long, if not longer, than the other 3 and give the most forgiving ride.
    no

    there is no way to tell merely from the shape of the fork legs
    as there are too many other variables

    as for differences in materials
    no
    there is no way to tell merely from the frame and fork material
    as there are too many other variables

    although
    the things you said about materials
    are oft repeated
    they are overgeneralizations
    and not really tru

    for instance
    steel can be desgned to be more flexible
    and this could potentially make a slightly more shock absorbing frame
    but
    this doesn't meant that they are
    and
    it is really only true with lighter frames
    and lightweight steel frames
    are probably less fatigue resistant
    than a similar weight aluminum frame

    edit
    ike I said
    there are a handful of oft repeated myths about frame materials
    but the fact of the matter is
    all the bikes you listed well be more than adequate
    in terms of strength
    and you get 50X more shock absorption from 700 x 35 tires than from any frame

    and as for overall quality of the bikes
    well
    almost all bikes are made by the same handful of contract manufacturers in asia
    and
    surly and salsa are actually the same company
    or actually branches of qbp in Minnesota
    with all frames made in asia
    possibly by giant
    who is one of the largest
    or the largest
    contract manufacturer of bicycles
    Last edited by Wilfred Laurier; 08-27-14 at 10:07 AM.

  25. #25
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    8
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by salreus View Post
    I had this same problem on my bike. I would lock it as tight as possible and then by the end of the ride, it was at the bottom. I did find a solution. On my bike at least, there is the ability to tighten it more with a hex wrench. I found using the hex wrench makes it a lot tighter and now it doesn't go anywhere. Give it a try if you have the ability. Worked for me
    yeah, I used a hex wrench.

    Quote Originally Posted by sstorkel View Post
    Congratulations! You're well on your way to breaking your seatpost quick release, the seatpost clamp, or the frame itself! If your seatpost won't stay in place, I would suggest applying some assembly paste rather than CUH-RANKING it down as tight as possible...
    oh my! Well then, thank you very much! I guess I'll hop over to my LBS pronto and pick some up, don't want breaking things.

    Quote Originally Posted by sstorkel View Post
    If you're going to be riding regularly on dirt roads, you should probably consider a bike with higher-volume tires. If the bike uses the 700c wheel size popular with road bikes, I would suggest using a 700c x 30mm or larger tire. For mountain bike wheels (26", 27.5" a.k.a 650B, 29" a.k.a. 29er) I would suggest a tire that's at least 1.75" wide. thanks, good info, makes sense

    If the dirt roads you plan to ride are relatively flat, the handlebar shape and position might not make much difference. When descending sketchy dirt roads, however, I find the face down/butt up riding position offered by many drop bar bikes doesn't inspire much confidence. agreed, but most of the dirt roads I'll be on with this bike will be not too problematic, just bumpy with divots and such, not so much downhill/offroad at all really

    If you're planning to commute on the bike and will need to attach racks and panniers, then you may want the longer, more stable wheelbase afforded by a road touring bike (Surly Long Haul Trucker, Soma Saga, Salsa Vaya, Trek 520) or an off-road/adventure touring bike (Surly Ogre, Salsa Fargo). If you won't need to carry much stuff attached to the bike then the shorter wheelbase and more nimble handling of a cyclocross bike (Specialized Cruz, Trek Crossrip, Cannondale CAADX) may appeal to you.now THIS is excellent info. I don't think I'll be so much 'hauling' per se, but I probably will go with the "racks/panniers" eventually, so it looks like a few of the sexy ones I mentioned (Vaya, Ogre, and Fargo) are really nifty for that.

    Finally, if you plan to ride off-road in inclement weather (read: rain) I would strongly urge you to consider buying a bike that can use disc brakes. In my experience, disc brakes provide much more consistent stopping power in wet/muddy conditions than rim brakes.my next bike *will* have disc brakes, that is a guarantee. That's one of the primary things I want to upgrade is disc brakes. It doesn't snow much here, but
    Quote Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
    there is no way to tell merely from the shape of the fork legs as there are too many other variables
    there is no way to tell merely from the frame and fork material as there are too many other variables

    almost all bikes are made by the same handful of contract manufacturers in asia
    surly and salsa are actually the same company or actually branches of qbp in Minnesota
    wow, no kidding? Incredible, never knew that. So Surly and Salsa are just branches of the same company? Wow. Interesting how I liked so many of each of their bikes.

    ok, so with some additional information, I'm starting to narrow things down.

    1. Ability to haul *some* stuff, but not a full on pack mule. I don't need to be able to use the bike to help my friend move, but touring-capable bikes have certain attachments that allow you to hook up racks and such, right? What do I look for specifically? For example, on the Ogre page: Ogre | Bikes | Surly Bikes it lists outright the different attachment possibilities. However, looking on Giant's website at their bikes, I can't find any bike that lists anything about 'touring' nor can I find any bike with specs that list attachments for stuff. I would assume Giant has some kind of bike with this capability, so perhaps I'm simply not looking for the right thing.


    2. I'd like the ability to attach fat(ter) tires (not necessarily "fatbike" tires), so I guess anything that is >= "26x2" or "700x30". Is it a bridge too far to get a bike that can accommodate big honkin' fat tires for inclement weather (I *will* be riding in the rain) as well as "skinnier" type tires for those times on the weekend when I just want to get on the road and log some miles to try to reduce this blubber I have accumulating around my waist? I'd like the capability to ride from Tacoma to Seattle and back, for example, and I assume that having big beasty tires might slow me down rather immensely on the road if I know it's a very mellow type of path as far as obstacles and such?


    anyway, I'm going to owe this forum a few kegs of beer once I finally make my purchase decision, so as always, thanks a million gents (And gals)
    ____________________________
    "A day on a bike is a good day"

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •