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  1. #1
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    Newbie Question on Crosstrail

    I'm kind of new to biking, and looking for a solid all round bike for some cruising, commuting and off-road action. I'm 6'2", 175 lbs. I'm somewhat committed to the Specialized Crosstrail line, including the "Expert" and "Pro" models. Really looking for versatility. I'd like input from anybody who owns a Crosstrail bike on how they like it, and what they use it for, and the level of off-road activity you trust it with. I understand that it's a compromise, and I know that there are a healthy number of bikers who don't like hybrids of any type, shape or color.

    Also, would a mountain bike 29'er of some flavor be a good compromise for cruising with road tires with a switch to mb tires for off-road.

    Thanks in advance to any of you smart guys or gals who can offer advice!

  2. #2
    POWERCRANK addict markhr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shred View Post
    ...Also, would a mountain bike 29'er of some flavor be a good compromise for cruising with road tires with a switch to mb tires for off-road...
    Absolutely, the 29" tyre diameter is effectively the same as 700c (29"=622etrto=700c) so you can have one bike to do almost everything with either a change of tyres or swapping out the wheels. It also prevents some of the clutter that owning bikes with multiple tyre sizes causes.
    shameless POWERCRANK plug
    Recommended reading for all cyclists - Cyclecraft - Effective Cycling
    Condor Cycles - quite possibly the best bike shop in London
    Don't run red lights, wear a helmet, use hand signals, get some cycle lights(front and rear) and, FFS, don't run red lights!

  3. #3
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    I have an Expert. On road it does pretty well. I swapped the stock tires for some 38mm Specialized Infinities because the stockers took a little oomph to get moving in stop/go traffic. The suspension can be locked out for climbing hills. Not the fastest bike out there,but does really well on torn up roads. Planet Bike Cascadia fenders go right on,and the rear disc won't get in the way of a rack. Haven't ridden it off road,but I think it would do ok on light trails. Biggest issues would be that the BB isn't as high as real MTB's,and the gearing isn't as low.

    If you're going to do technical off-road stuff,then get a MTB and use slicks on the street. Otherwise it should do fine for what you want.

    C'dale BBU('05 and '09)/Super Six/Hooligan8and 3,Kona Dew Deluxe,Novara Buzz/Safari,Surly Big Dummy,Marin Pt Reyes,Giant Defy 1,Schwinn DBX SuperSport/Qualifier,Brompton S6L,Dahon Speed Pro TT

  4. #4
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    Thanks dynaryder! I'm leaning toward the Expert..which is interesting since I am obviously not one. I rode the TriCross today as well, which is a solid all round bike, but not an off-roader by any stretch. Will probably go with the Expert in a 59c size. Aloha and thanks.

    Any other Crosstrailers out there have any input?

  5. #5
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    any update you can share

    Shred,
    I'm also looking at the Crosstrail (either Sport or Expert) for trail riding. I like the 700 wheels but am curious if they indeed roll faster than 26"ers. I'm debating front suspension but every time I think I'd be fine without it, I go ride my trail and experience all the dips and bumps that my current MTB absorbs and I find myself convinced I'm better off with the extra weight of the supsenison.

    I'm a 60% limestone trail and 40% paved bike trail rider so I've been looking at hybrids for quite some time. Lots of options so I'd appreciate any experiences you or others can share with the CrossTrail so far.

    thanks!

  6. #6
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    I have a Crosstrail Sport, and absolutely love it as a do everything bike.

    I ride primarily on MUPs, with a little local and "downtown" and some highway use. I do a 42 mile loop every day, plus errands later.

    I'm 62 years old, and can average 15 MPH on my loop, nonstop. It will ride right up a tree if you can get traction, and my top speed is 33.4MPH so far. And, my feet and legs haven't flown off my body yet, so I think it is capable of more, as soon as I am.

    I haven't taken it "off road," but, ride regularly on grass, gravel, and chipped MUPs. It does very well.

    I keep grocery panniers, and tail trunk, on it all the time, as it is also my errand bike.

    Soon, I will be replacing those Burrough XC Pro tires with something much more flat resistant, as I average a flat every other day. And, I find the OEM tires good rollers. I keep them at 85PSI.

    It really is a great bike, even though it is a hybrid. It is everything I wanted, and I came off a steel road bike.

    I think you will be very pleased.

    (edit) p.s. It sure rides nicer when the suspension isn't locked out, and is fine either way, though a little more twitchy when it is locked out. Also the majority of the MUPs around here are paved, very few chipped.



    Last edited by Wanderer; 08-18-08 at 02:42 PM. Reason: noted

  7. #7
    Senior Member JonathanGennick's Avatar
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    I rock a Crosstrail Pro as my errand-bike and around-town bike. I had some issues when I first bought it last year, but those pretty much went away once I got the fit nailed.

    Here are some things to like about the bike: Planet Bike fenders go right on--braze-ons are in the right position, and there is a chainstay bridge; The rear disk brake is positioned to allow for a standard (not disc-specific) rear rack; and there are separate braze ons to accommodate that rack; You can mount almost any width tire -- I swap between three sizes; The frame is mountain-bike tough--I have taken my bike on the hardest of our local trails, and the bike holds up;

    One thing I still do not like: Standover is minimal. With 29er tires, the top tube is right up against my crotch. Clearance is better with the stock tires, but is still not great.

    After getting past the standover issue, I've come to really like the bike. I've decided it's best use (for me) is as an errand-running bike. I have it set up for in-town riding, I have a rack on order, and panniers will come as I can afford them. (I am thinking of replacing the front fork with a rigid fork, since I generally take other bikes on trails. Haven't made up my mind on that point yet though).

  8. #8
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
    I (I am thinking of replacing the front fork with a rigid fork, since I generally take other bikes on trails. Haven't made up my mind on that point yet though).
    I have ridden mine with the suspension active, and locked out. While locking it out for a hard hill is nice, it rides much better with the suspension active, and, surprisingly, the steering is more "twitchy" when the suspension is locked out. The good news is, that twitchy or not, it goes where you point it.

    It really is a very nice "errand" and "grocery getter" (I usually haul two full paper grocery bags in the panniers, and two plastic ones draped over the top of my tail trunk, full of lite stuff, just resting on top of the paper bags - spent $70 there this morning) - with enuf tall gears to go reasonably fast.

    When I went looking, I was lookng for a do everything bike, and while not perfect as a fast bike, it does remarkably well in that regard.

  9. #9
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    I got a glimpse at the 2009 version of the Cross Trail this week. Specialized has re-branded these models. I saw their catalog and saw 4 models: Base (~$440), Sport (~$540), Elite (~$650) and Comp (~$960).

    Couple things I caught from the catalog:
    - The Base doesn't have a lockout fork, others do
    - Sport has Acera derailleurs while Elite has a new Deore model
    - Comp has disc brakes, others don't
    - The forks used in each model are similar to last year's models and quality goes up with the cost
    - Tireset seems to be the same across the models
    - Not that it matters but the color schemes weren't too flashy using black, coffee, copper, silver, etc. (which is a good thing)

    In any case, the Elite seemed to hit my sweet spot of price/value so I'm waiting until my LBS gets a couple models built so I can ride the 49 and 53cm tubes to compare. I haven't ridden a 29'er before so I don't know what size will be best for me (~5'11, 170 lbs). The top tube on the 49cm did come close to my crotch so I'm wondering if the 53 will be in the danger zone. I like larger frames though.

    Anybody else seen these yet? I think this is what I'm leaning towards for spending my meager bonus this year
    Last edited by Underworld; 08-21-08 at 12:12 PM.

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