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Old 08-04-13, 08:29 PM   #1
bassicgroove
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Looking for a first 'real' bike.. Specialized Tricross?

Hello everyone, I'm a newbie here, looks like a great place to get some expert advice. I'm a 23 year old male from NY, and soon I'll be moving to the SF Bay area. I've had a few bikes in the past that I've used to get around, but now I'm ready to step up into something more serious.

I've been shopping around and I've fallen on the Specialized Tricross as a good option. I'm looking for a bike that I can use in the city for commuting, something I can put packs on the back and haul some stuff, and a bike that I won't have to worry about when I hit some rough terrain (gravel, dirt roads, etc.). I'm also looking for a bike that will be comfortable on a respectable touring trip (I have a dream to go from SF to Seattle to see my sister). I've been looking for a bike with a steel frame, but I can't really find one a good fit, and I'm willing to go with the aluminum frame of the tricross (I've tried other aluminum road bikes that are way too stiff for me). It also seems like these bikes are a good deal as they usually have Shimano Tiagra components, I just found one with 105.

I'm about 6', 180 pounds, and I don't need the bike to be feather-light. I've been looking on ebay at the tricross and it usually lands around $700 for a well-used bike, which is right in my price range. I also like that they come in black, as I'll probably wind up living in Oakland and I could probably count on my fingers how many minutes it would take to get a bright red road bike stolen in that area. I hope I haven't left anything out, I'd appreciate some advice on bikes that I could find used in the $500-$700 price range that could suit the needs of a commuter with touring aspirations and a penchant for running off the beaten path. Thanks!
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Old 08-10-13, 05:08 PM   #2
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Hello

Good luck Bassic.
I live just South of Oakland and I just picked up a specialized Tricross today. Big upgrade from what I had.
I hope your move goes well, and your able to grab one of these gems.
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Old 08-10-13, 05:24 PM   #3
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I've been riding a tricross for a couple of years now. I bought it as a bike for use on the roads that would also cope with some lightish offroad use. I wanted something faster than the MTB but that I could also take on gravel towpaths and across fields etc, but without the full-on flexibility of the MTB.

Over the last two years I've slowly tweaked the tricross to be more of a fast road machine and less of a go-anywhere machine, but so far haven't bought an all-out road bike simply because I like the option to put fatter tyres on the bike and take it off-road if the urge takes me (which it does, once in a while). I've lowered the handlebars, put narrower tyres on it (trading 32mm Marathon Plus for 25mm Durano Plus), and generally fiddled with it to focus on speed and endurance. The overwhelming majority of my riding these days is on roads but sometimes I'll take a shortcut along a gravel path or across a field. There's also the chance that my future will include a move that would make me very thankful for the freedom to put 38mm tyres on it and tank around a lot of gravel tracks and stuff.

The bike is pretty rugged, I've taken it over rough paths and gravel and stuff, loaded with panniers and my 250lb bulk. I broke one spoke and cracked the rear rim when I hit a pothole on a fast descent with panniers. Aside from that it's barely missed a beat in 6000+ miles of riding.
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Old 08-10-13, 06:28 PM   #4
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I've had I think about 6 of them over the years. I really like them. It should be perfect for what you're wanting to use it for. My favorite was a 2006 Tricross Comp model. Front and rear rack mounts and good components.
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Old 08-10-13, 08:42 PM   #5
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Great, thanks for the advice guys, looks like my bike. I'm all over craigslist and ebay
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Old 08-10-13, 09:06 PM   #6
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They do have a steel version

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bik...ss-and-reviews

They look like a great versatile bike, no matter what frame.
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Old 08-11-13, 01:15 AM   #7
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Great, thanks for the advice guys, looks like my bike. I'm all over craigslist and ebay
Be careful when looking at them - there's the regular tricross and also a bike sometimes called the singlecross (it's a tricross in single-speed configuration). That's fine if you're looking for a single speed bike, but I wasn't and nearly got myself stuck with one before I realised why it was surprisingly cheap.
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Old 08-11-13, 12:02 PM   #8
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Be careful when looking at them - there's the regular tricross and also a bike sometimes called the singlecross (it's a tricross in single-speed configuration).
Yeah I've seen the single speed ones, not what I'm looking for.
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Old 08-11-13, 12:06 PM   #9
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They do have a steel version

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bik...ss-and-reviews

They look like a great versatile bike, no matter what frame.
Thanks for the tip. From what I can tell, they just started making it, which would mean I wouldn't be able to find a used one (unfortunately I max out at around $700-$800).
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Old 08-11-13, 12:12 PM   #10
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The Salsa Vaya 3 looks pretty similar. Not saying it is better, but if you are looking on the used market, another option to consider.
http://salsacycles.com/bikes/vaya_3/
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Old 08-11-13, 12:14 PM   #11
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Cross bikes are a great one bike do it all bike. There have got to be steel cross bikes out there that fit you. The surly cross check comes in 9 different sizes and fits your budget. Soma makes a number of different steel cross frames. One possible problem with a cross bike as a touring bike is that the chain stays are a bit short. A longish rack (some are longer than others) will help here as well as picking bags that are not too wide.
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Old 08-11-13, 09:50 PM   #12
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I live about an hour and a half from the bay area. I don't go there often but my son will be attending UC Berkeley this fall and we've made several trips lately. My entertainment is to pay very close attention to the bikes people use to get around. For the most part, they are all beaters. And I mean beaters! I'd bet money they all have much better bicycles in the safe confines of their home that they bring out for recreational, fitness and touring, but not for transportation. And there are those that have what appear to be beaters, but if you look closely, they are actually pretty nice bikes. I recommend you wait on any new purchases. Wait till you get here. Get a feel for the environment and talk to a few locals; then decide. We have plenty of bike shops and the used market is probably better than it should be ... if you get my drift ;>(

Matt

Quote:
Originally Posted by bassicgroove View Post
Hello everyone, I'm a newbie here, looks like a great place to get some expert advice. I'm a 23 year old male from NY, and soon I'll be moving to the SF Bay area. I've had a few bikes in the past that I've used to get around, but now I'm ready to step up into something more serious.

I've been shopping around and I've fallen on the Specialized Tricross as a good option. I'm looking for a bike that I can use in the city for commuting, something I can put packs on the back and haul some stuff, and a bike that I won't have to worry about when I hit some rough terrain (gravel, dirt roads, etc.). I'm also looking for a bike that will be comfortable on a respectable touring trip (I have a dream to go from SF to Seattle to see my sister). I've been looking for a bike with a steel frame, but I can't really find one a good fit, and I'm willing to go with the aluminum frame of the tricross (I've tried other aluminum road bikes that are way too stiff for me). It also seems like these bikes are a good deal as they usually have Shimano Tiagra components, I just found one with 105.

I'm about 6', 180 pounds, and I don't need the bike to be feather-light. I've been looking on ebay at the tricross and it usually lands around $700 for a well-used bike, which is right in my price range. I also like that they come in black, as I'll probably wind up living in Oakland and I could probably count on my fingers how many minutes it would take to get a bright red road bike stolen in that area. I hope I haven't left anything out, I'd appreciate some advice on bikes that I could find used in the $500-$700 price range that could suit the needs of a commuter with touring aspirations and a penchant for running off the beaten path. Thanks!
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