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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 07-13-12, 11:15 AM   #1
bigtommy
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Which of these should i go for? First bike.

Hi looking for some advice on my first bike for commuting to work.

The route will be 80-90% trails/tracks off road and the distance travelled will be ten miles there and ten miles back. Iím looking for something quite fast on this surface and also reliable (within my price range)

I have picked out the following bikes so far, 2 hybrids and 2 cyclecross which are within my range, which of these would you recommend?

Giant Escape 2 (2012) http://www.allterraincycles.co.uk/product/125794.html

Norco CCX3 (2012) http://www.evanscycles.com/products/...-bike-ec031686

Specialized Sirrus (2011) http://www.leisurewheels.co.uk/produ...d=m9b0s18p8846

Revolution Cross (2012) http://www.edinburghbicycle.com/prod...ution-cross-12

Both Hybrids would be priced about the same whereas the cx bikes are around £100 more expensive. Would appreciate if you could consider costs as well in terms of the most 'bang for buck'

Cheers
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Old 07-13-12, 11:32 AM   #2
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Welcome to BF!
My vote would be for the Norco. It is much better equipped (Sora derailleurs, FSA chainset, for example). I am not familiar with the brakes, but for a very reasonable cost you could equip Avid BB7's if the stock units do not perform to your liking.
You could likely equip wider tires (tyres), given the nature of your ride - I'd expect a frame like that to accommodate at least 37-39mm, if not a little wider.

It is a very good idea (especially with this being your first big bike purchase) to ensure a proper fit.
Here are a few resources - take each with a pinch of salt, but they should give you a general idea of what size frame and overall geometry will suit your body best.

http://zinncycles.com/Zinn/index.php/archives/2141
http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za...LCULATOR_INTRO

General fit info: http://www.ebicycles.com/article/wha...do-i-need.html

Last edited by canyoneagle; 07-13-12 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 07-13-12, 11:43 AM   #3
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Have you ridden any of them yet? Are they all available through the same vendor? What's the return/exchange policy like? A 2D picture may look good on screen or in a paper catalogue, but it's your arse that will be riding and not your eyes.
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Old 07-13-12, 11:43 AM   #4
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+1 for the Norco.
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Old 07-13-12, 11:45 AM   #5
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Have you ridden any of them yet? Are they all available through the same vendor? What's the return/exchange policy like? A 2D picture may look good on screen or in a paper catalogue, but it's your arse that will be riding and not your eyes.
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Old 07-13-12, 11:47 AM   #6
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The Norco looks like an excellent choice, but the Escape is the better deal for the money...
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Old 07-13-12, 12:05 PM   #7
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Thanks for the welcome and quick replies guys.

Haven't tried any of them for size as ive just been researching whats good for the job within a tight budget but i take your point.

I could probably try out the two hybrids but not sure about the norco and rev.

The websites ive linked arent where i would be buying them. I just did a quick google.
Prices would be like this.

Giant 290
Sirrus 300
Rev 380
Norco 420

so within the 300-400 range really.

Value for what i get is important however if you believe the norco may outstrip them all in terms of performance id be inclined to favour that one.

I could also pick up a 2011 sirrus sport for 350 but not sure if theres any major benefit to the extra £50

any alternatives are welcome.
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Old 07-13-12, 12:07 PM   #8
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Note - prices are in GBP lol.
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Old 07-13-12, 12:51 PM   #9
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I'm still going to stick with the Norco. Great value for money IMO. It still edges out the Sirrus sport for spec (Sora vs Alivo). For about the same money, this looks to be quite a good value in a flat-bar hybrid. The 28mm tyres would be at the narrow side of the scale for your use, but can easily be replaced with 32-35mm.
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Old 07-13-12, 01:30 PM   #10
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I'm still going to stick with the Norco. Great value for money IMO. It still edges out the Sirrus sport for spec (Sora vs Alivo). For about the same money, this looks to be quite a good value in a flat-bar hybrid. The 28mm tyres would be at the narrow side of the scale for your use, but can easily be replaced with 32-35mm.
Thanks again. I had a lool at the raleigh and i think its just out of my price range. The Norco is pushing me outside of the 400. I need to draw a line somewhere or before i know it i'll be at 500 lol

So is the norco considerably better than the others listed?

Also any thoughts on the revolution? I know it isnt a massive manufacturer however it seems to get a great reputation around the UK. How would you say it compares? I really know very little about components.
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Old 07-13-12, 02:26 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by bigtommy View Post
Thanks again. I had a lool at the raleigh and i think its just out of my price range. The Norco is pushing me outside of the 400. I need to draw a line somewhere or before i know it i'll be at 500 lol

So is the norco considerably better than the others listed?

Also any thoughts on the revolution? I know it isnt a massive manufacturer however it seems to get a great reputation around the UK. How would you say it compares? I really know very little about components.

No. Component wise, the Norco has only a slight edge. However, when you factor the rack and fenders into the equation, suddenly the Escape begins to approach prominence.

Even if you have no need for rack or fenders, it would behoove you to purchase the Escape and remove them, if we're only considering components and price...

OTOH, suppose we all agree upon what we think the proper choice of your bicycle should be, but you fail to feel comfortable upon our choice when riding. Would you still buy the bike anyway?

It really boils down to your test ride of all these bikes after our little input.

Now go test riding before you pull the trigger!

Last edited by SlimRider; 07-13-12 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 07-13-12, 02:27 PM   #12
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There is a pretty steep price/quality curve (i.e. each additional 50-75 pounds gets you tangibly better quality) until you hit about 700-800 pounds, at which the curve tapers off, and the price "steps" become greater (100-200 quid per noteworthy increase in quality).
Sales often allow one to obtain a bike from 1-2 quality/price brackets higher, and I see the Norco as such a price/quality combination, bringing what looks to be the best value in the lot IMO.

The Revolution looks like a reasonable bike, to be sure, but is easily one full step down in quality in all areas. For example, the derailleurs (Acera, 2300) are near the bottom of Shimano's line and are 8-speed, whereas the Norco is equipped with the full Sora mid-level group in 9 speed format. Another example is the the spokes on the Revolution are listed as "steel" (not stainless), which tend to get dull and corrode over time, whereas the Norco has Stainless steel spokes. Both bikes have their fair share of in-house (non-branded) parts - handlebars, seatpost, stem - which is not uncommon at this price point.

Anyway, just a few thoughts.

As an option, here's one of similar quality to the Revolution cx that has slightly better spec, and includes mudguards and a rack.

Last edited by canyoneagle; 07-13-12 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 07-13-12, 02:49 PM   #13
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You mention that you'll be riding 20 miles r/t and that 80-90% of that is "trails/tracks off road". What kind of shape are these trails in? Are they like paved trails that motorized vehicles are not allowed to use or are these rock and root strewn cow paths? If it's an improved and smoother surface, any of the bikes should be up to the task. But if it's really rough, you may want to conside a 'Hardtail' mtb.

Also, what size frame are you looking for. I started to poke around the Evans site, but looks like they essentially act as a clearinghouse of sorts- NOS, limited size selection.
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Old 07-13-12, 05:22 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
No. Component wise, the Norco has only a slight edge. However, when you factor the rack and fenders into the equation, suddenly the Escape begins to approach prominence.

Even if you have no need for rack or fenders, it would behoove you to purchase the Escape and remove them, if we're only considering components and price...

OTOH, suppose we all agree upon what we think the proper choice of your bicycle should be, but you fail to feel comfortable upon our choice when riding. Would you still buy the bike anyway?

It really boils down to your test ride of all these bikes after our little input.

Now go test riding before you pull the trigger!
Cheers , i'll have a look around and see what i can try out. I guess i really just came on here to get some opinions on whether i'm looking at the right types of bike for the price and also to try and establish which of these might be the best for the job and value for money assuming each is a good fit.


Quote:
Originally Posted by canyoneagle View Post
There is a pretty steep price/quality curve (i.e. each additional 50-75 pounds gets you tangibly better quality) until you hit about 700-800 pounds, at which the curve tapers off, and the price "steps" become greater (100-200 quid per noteworthy increase in quality).
Sales often allow one to obtain a bike from 1-2 quality/price brackets higher, and I see the Norco as such a price/quality combination, bringing what looks to be the best value in the lot IMO.

The Revolution looks like a reasonable bike, to be sure, but is easily one full step down in quality in all areas. For example, the derailleurs (Acera, 2300) are near the bottom of Shimano's line and are 8-speed, whereas the Norco is equipped with the full Sora mid-level group in 9 speed format. Another example is the the spokes on the Revolution are listed as "steel" (not stainless), which tend to get dull and corrode over time, whereas the Norco has Stainless steel spokes. Both bikes have their fair share of in-house (non-branded) parts - handlebars, seatpost, stem - which is not uncommon at this price point.

Anyway, just a few thoughts.

As an option, here's one of similar quality to the Revolution cx that has slightly better spec, and includes mudguards and a rack.
Great information, these are things i don't know or think about which is why i'm here! I do quite like the look of the touring bike. I don't know much about a touring bike or it's purpose (i presume to tour). Would this be suited to trails/off road just as much as the others i listed? Also how would you expect this to perform in terms of speed/power against the others? A big consideration would be how much speed i can get out of the bike with little effort, my reason for this is that i often go to the gym before or after work to do some weight training therefore i wouldn't want to burn myself out however i still want to travel at a decent speed.

I do like the fact it comes with guards and a rack though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
You mention that you'll be riding 20 miles r/t and that 80-90% of that is "trails/tracks off road". What kind of shape are these trails in? Are they like paved trails that motorized vehicles are not allowed to use or are these rock and root strewn cow paths? If it's an improved and smoother surface, any of the bikes should be up to the task. But if it's really rough, you may want to conside a 'Hardtail' mtb.

Also, what size frame are you looking for. I started to poke around the Evans site, but looks like they essentially act as a clearinghouse of sorts- NOS, limited size selection.
It's basically a designated cycle track forming part of a national cycle route, it's mostly gravel surfaces and relatively flat across the entire disctance.

Yes the Evans site do seem to be clearing stuff out at the minutee. It was the Norco which caught my attention from here due to opportunity to get discount and cashback also bring the price to around £420. Trouble with the Norco is i'm not so sure it would be easy to find one of these nearby to try it out.

As for frame size, i'm not so sure yet, i've seen a few diferent sizing guides online however i've yet to have a look at canyoneagle's links that he kindly provided. This i guess is why it's definitely a good idea to try them out.
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