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Old 07-06-08, 05:31 PM   #1
okayndc
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K2 Astral 4.0 vs. Cannondale Quick 4

Okay, here's the deal. I test rode both at my local REI store and both bikes have similar specs but, the Cannondale had a more comfortable ride. I noticed on the K2 that most of the riding shock goes straight to the hands which makes the ride a bit uncomfortable. Also, the shifting was a little tricky because I had to click the shifters 2 to 3 times just to get it into the proper gear. I don't know why the K2 is priced higher than the Cannondale ($580 vs. $550) because to me, the bikes are very similar. The Cannondale Quick 4 (2009) is pretty new and reviews are hard to come by for both bikes. Anyone know anything about the two bikes? What is/was your experience?

Specs for both bikes:

K2 Astral 4.0
Price: $580

FRAME - BUTTED 7005 AL FLAT BAR, REFLEX ROAD TUBING
REAR SHOCK - N/A
FORK - ALUMINUM, TAPER-GAUGE BLADED UNICROWN WITH CR-MO STEERER
FRONT DERAILLEUR - SHIMANO R443
REAR DERAILLEUR - SHIMANO SORA
SHIFTERS - SHIMANO R-440 RAPIDFIRE PLUS
FREE WHEEL CASSETTE - SRAM PG-850 8 SPEED CASSETTE, 12-26T
CRANKSET - TRUVATIV ISOFLOW ROAD 3.0
BOTTOM BRACKET - SEALED CARTRIDGE
CHAIN - KMC Z72 WITH REUSABLE LINK
RIM - ALEX DA-16 DOUBLE-WALL
TIRES - KENDA KWICK ROLLER SPORT, 700 x 28c
BRAKES - TEKTRO RX-1 MINI LINEAR PULL
BRAKE LEVERS - TEKTRO ALLOY WITH REACH ADJUST
HEADSET - 1 1/8" THREADLESS
STEM - ALUMINUM, THREADLESS
HANDLEBAR - AL FLAT BAR, WITH ERGO AL BAR ENDS
GRIPS - ERGONOMIC DESIGN, TRIPLE-DENSITY
SEAT CLAMP - ALLOY, WITH ALLEN BOLT
SEAT POST - 6061-T6 AL, 2D FORGED HEAD, WITH MICRO-ADJUST
SADDLE - K2 FITNESS.ROAD, WITH GEL PADDING & REFLECTIVE REAR PANELS
PEDALS - RESIN BODY WITH AL REAR CAGE & TOE CLIPS
RINGS - 30/42/52
FRONT HUB - ALLOY, WITH QR
REAR HUB - ALLOY CASSETTE, WITH QR
SPOKES - 14 GA STAINLESS WITH BRASS NIPPLES

Cannondale Quick 4
Price: $550

Frame T6106 Aluminum
Fork Slice Ultra X All-Conditions Carbon blades
Crankset Shimano FC-M341, 48/38/28
Shifters SRAM X-5 Trigger
Brakes Tektro TK-B18 linear-pull
Brake levers Tektro 3-finger
Front derailleur Shimano Alivio
Rear derailleur SRAM X-5
Head set VP semi-integrated threadless
Bottom bracket TH cartridge
Rear cog Shimano CS-HG40, 11-32, 8-speed
Front hub Shimano HB-RM40
Rear hub Shimano FH-RM30
Rims Cannondale C3 w/machined sidewall
Tires CST Selecta w/Kevlar belt, 700x35
Stem Cannondale XC3
Handlebar Cannondale C3
Seat post Cannondale C4 Alloy
Saddle Selle San Marco Ischea
Pedals VP platform
Chain KMC Z72

Last edited by okayndc; 07-06-08 at 06:06 PM.
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Old 07-06-08, 06:43 PM   #2
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The K2 is going to ride a bit rougher on your wrists because it looks to be closer to the road bike end of the spectrum (as far as Hybrids go) with a more aero position. The C'dale looks like it would be slightly closer to the comfort end of the spectrum keeping you more upright with more weight on the saddle.

The K2 will likely be a bit more efficient and slightly faster at the expense of some immediate comfort (though it would likely be the more comfy bike over a longish ride).

What is the intended use of the bike? Distance? FWIW, the C'dale name will hold it's value better.

Make sure you are riding with your elbows slightly bent, as a shock absorber.

Last edited by tdister; 07-06-08 at 07:06 PM.
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Old 07-06-08, 07:00 PM   #3
okayndc
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I want to hit some of the long trails and get a good exercise. I want something that is light, fast, agile, sturdy, has good components, and most of all is comfortable. I'm leaning towards the Cannondale.
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Old 07-06-08, 07:46 PM   #4
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(nudging okayndc to a road bike; rei.com lists a Novara Divano for $800 and a C'dale Synapse 7 for $950... I've learned that I prefer drop bars for long distances, but that's still personal preference)



Back to these two bikes --

Forget about the shift quality you experienced on the K2. They were likely out of adjustment, and if you decided to buy it, the shop would take the extra time to tune them before letting you take it home.

The difference in ride quality may have been due to the tires more than anything else. The skinnier tires of the K2 would ride harsher -- but they're faster, too.

You'll have a wider gear range on the Cannondale with its 11-32 rear cassette.

I don't know who actually makes the wheels on the Cannondale, but I'm not good at comparing wheels anyway..

Hmm... I might go for the Cannondale. I'd want either pedals with toe clips or clipless pedals, though.
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Old 07-08-08, 09:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by okayndc View Post
I want to hit some of the long trails and get a good exercise. I want something that is light, fast, agile, sturdy, has good components, and most of all is comfortable. I'm leaning towards the Cannondale.
That looks like something I would write. I'm looking for the same things and I rode the Quick 5 the other day and liked it, but I'm still comparing other bikes.

I'm planning to compare the Quick 4 with a Trek 7.3FX this week and wish the shop had K2's also, but need to look around more. I like the fact that the Q4 comes with a carbon blades and I'd assume that will help absorb some shock and still be nice and light. I also know tire widths will affect the ride, but for me, I think 35cm would be a good width for the occasional off pavement rides, but still not slow the ride down too much overall. Who knows, I may need to have a couple types of tires on hand to swap out depending on where I'm riding.

Since I'm coming from an old road bike with toe clips, I think that or clipless pedals are going to be a must.

Are there any other comparable bikes that would also be worth investigating? I'd love to follow BarracksSi's nudging and upgrade to a better road bike, but my bad back doesn't like that idea as much.

BTW, I hope the handlebars on most hybrid fitness bikes can be modified with some kind of add-ons such that the long trips aren't too painful. Are 30-50 mile trips doable with these bikes?
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