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Old 04-02-14, 07:31 AM   #1
IndianaRecRider 
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So, is it a road bike or a hybrid?

So yesterday I went out "window shopping" for a new bike. The Diamondback Edgewood I've been riding, while being a nice bike, has always been too big for me so I've been wanting to get something more my size, so with my tax return arriving soon, I decided to start looking. Went to quite a few shops and stores yesterday just "to look." Had no intention of actually buying anything, but we all know how that works out, don't we? LOL.

So anyways, my last stop was Performance Bike. I have to admit, the sales guy was the friendliest and most knowledgeable of all the people I talked with. Told him what I was looking for (a comfort hybrid bike) and he showed me the selection they had. After seeing bike after bike after bike with front suspension (not only at PB but pretty much at every stop), which I really don't need/like, I asked if they had anything without a suspension fork. He said they did and showed me some different bikes over by the road bikes. I test rode three of them around the parking lot...a Fuji Absolute 1.4, another Absolute, but this time a 2.0 and also a GT Tachyon. Liked all three and even though I wasn't going to make a purchase, somehow that Absolute 1.4 found its way into my car and coming home with me. Performance Bike is a great place. They threw in a free water bottle and cage, and also an adjustable stem, for an even more upright position.

Well, after I got home I decided to go on their website to read reviews of the bike, but couldn't find it listed under the hybrid category. Doing a search for it, I found it under the "flat bar road bikes" category. So right then and there I'm thinking "what the heck?? I just bought a road bike??" I'm tellin' ya now, my fat, 240 pound @$$ is not going to look good on a road bike. LOL. However, reading here on the forums, I have seen it mentioned as a hybrid bicycle, due to the fact it has the flat handlebars along with more of a hybrid geometry.

So, I said all of that to ask this.....technically, is the Absolute 1.4 a true road bike or can it truly be thought of as a hybrid? Not that it matters either way, I suppose. I'm pretty sure I'm going to enjoy riding it no matter what category it falls under. It's just that my curious, meticulous mind needs clarification. LOL.

Anyway, thanks for letting me go "on and on." I'll post a pic of it set up in my trainer if anyone is interested.

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Old 04-02-14, 07:53 AM   #2
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It is basically a hybrid, but a road hybrid. So the riding position is a little lower than the bolt upright geometry of a comfort hybrid. Gearing is still pretty much mountain gearing, so I wouldn't worry about getting up a steep hill. But don't worry as you have plenty of tall gears for hammering in the flats.

But the Fuji is better suited for longer rides than a comfort hybrid. Lighter, more aerodynamic, thinner tires. IMO that is a good thing. If your legs can handle it, you can comfortably ride 50 or 60 mile rides on the Fuji. (You can probably do more, actually) Looks like a nice bike and, IMO a far better choice if you plan to ride mostly on pavement. Specs look very good for the price. Now get out and ride it.
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Old 04-02-14, 08:11 AM   #3
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I've owned a Raleigh Hybrid about a decade ago, and my next bike was a "road bike" with flat bars. MRT is correct, it is about riding position, and thinner lighter wheels. Better for long distances, not as much fun on gravel oor dirt paths.
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Old 04-02-14, 08:17 AM   #4
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Since it has flat handlebars, I'd call it a performance hybrid.
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Old 04-02-14, 09:44 AM   #5
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Hard to categorize hybrids these days. I don't know how they started out, but it seems to me there is 3 main categories and I would describe them as Comfort, Fitness, and Dual Sport.

Comfort obviously would be of the sit-upright variant. Dual Sport are the ones like the Specialized Crosstrail and Trek DS series with front suspension forks with more of an off-road tire. The fitness hybrids are like my new bike, the Giant Escape and like the Fuji Absolute that you bought.

That's just my newbie take on the hybrid selections.
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Old 04-02-14, 10:19 AM   #6
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Labels don't matter - but for what it's worth - its a bike meant for pavement riding, with mountain bike handlebars, mountain bike drivetrain and mountain bike brakes. It can take thicker tires than a road bike, but thinner than a mountain bike. In other words, a hybrid
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Old 04-02-14, 10:33 AM   #7
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What does it matter what to call it? Just ride it and enjoy it if you like it. If you need a label, that performance hybrid suggested above sounds about right.
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Old 04-02-14, 02:17 PM   #8
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One of my bikes is a Opus Cappricio. It has flat bars, 700-28c tires, compact crank, SRAM Apex front deraullier(road), SRAM X-7 rear deraullier(MTN), carbon fork, and aluminium frame. The manufacturer calls it "Urban Performance". The guys in my cycle group call it a hybrid. I don't know what it is either but it is quickly becoming my favorite!
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Old 04-02-14, 02:30 PM   #9
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Hybrid is a marketing BUZZ word!
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Old 04-02-14, 06:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndianaRecRider View Post
I'm pretty sure I'm going to enjoy riding it.
Isn't that the only thing that matters?
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Old 04-02-14, 10:04 PM   #11
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Isn't that the only thing that matters?
Yep, pretty much.

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Old 04-02-14, 10:06 PM   #12
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Thanks to everyone who chimed in. I appreciate the feedback.

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Old 04-03-14, 01:51 AM   #13
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An F2 Hybrid.
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Old 04-03-14, 06:51 AM   #14
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Fuji's lineup is on their web site. The 2.0 is either out, or it was made for Performance.

Check out the 2.1 and its MSRP

Fuji Bikes | LIFESTYLE | PAVEMENT - FITNESS | ABSOLUTE 2.1
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Old 04-05-14, 03:23 PM   #15
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Most likely that bike came from my store in Orland Park. I'll say what my thoughts are on that bike but I also agree..if it works for you, you can call it whatever you want!

Fuji makes the 2.0/3.0 LE as a bike for us. The 1.X and 2.X are made for the bike industry as a whole. The Absolute line and its similiar rack neighbor, the Diamondback Insight are our most popular bikes. I think that they make the most sense for the vast majority of the riders out there. No front shock, carbon fork for most and thin tires (down to road sizes for some) make pavement a breeze. I always pull out this type of bike when someone is looking for anything that will encourage exercise without breaking the bank while also allowing a quick to a friends house without gearing up.

I always say that there is always someone faster than you and always someone slower. You shouldn't care what you look like... I've seen much larger than 240 on road bikes all dressed up in spandex. In fact, they are called Clydesdales and they are a passionate group of riders across all types of bikes. Don't sweat such things.

I'm glad you like it and I'm sure that with more days like today, you'll be out and about on it. For the record, we call that type of bike a flat bar road bike..I agree that hybrid is almost a marketing term and is used with so many different types of bikes it's really not applicable anymore. For what it is worth, I consider a hybrid something with a front shock and thinner than mtn tires. If more folks would get over the fear of smaller tires, the biking world would be a better place..!

Enjoy your new bike!

Dave
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Old 04-05-14, 04:27 PM   #16
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'Hybrid' is a marketing buzz word!
other bike markets like in parts of Europe they use 'Cross' bike to mean the same sort of combination ...

so... classical breeding like breeding Dogs , or genetic manipulation like Monsanto or making phosphorescent Cats.
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Old 04-05-14, 06:48 PM   #17
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i think hybrid bikes were first aggressively marketed as such in the late 80s or early 90s
the name originally meant a hybrid
or cross
between a lightweight fragile and uncomfortable road racing bike
and an upright robust and slow mountain bike

before that time bikes that were not specifically for neither rough dirt nor for smooth roads were just called bikes

by the late 90s hybrids had developed a bad reputation
as most were neither light and fast enough for performance road cycling
nor suitable for aggressive off road riding
most of them had crappy suspension forks and seatposts
and cheap fat tires that were heavy and slow rolling

so around ten or fifteen years ago
some companies started calling their lightweight performance oriented hybrids flat bar road bikes
so consumers wouldnt associate them with the comfort oriented hybrids that dominated the market

at the other end of the spectrum
most companies started selling mountain bikes with the same 700c size wheels as hybrids
and called them 29ers
referencing the approximately 29 inch diameter of the fat tires

in reality
if a bike fits you well
you can make it suitable for any type of riding
by simply changing the tires

a 29er with narrow high pressure tires will ride like a flat bar road bike with a suspension fork
and a flat bar road bike with fat off road tires will handle trails like a fully rigid 29er
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Old 04-05-14, 07:42 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Most likely that bike came from my store in Orland Park. I'll say what my thoughts are on that bike but I also agree..if it works for you, you can call it whatever you want!

Fuji makes the 2.0/3.0 LE as a bike for us. The 1.X and 2.X are made for the bike industry as a whole. The Absolute line and its similiar rack neighbor, the Diamondback Insight are our most popular bikes. I think that they make the most sense for the vast majority of the riders out there. No front shock, carbon fork for most and thin tires (down to road sizes for some) make pavement a breeze. I always pull out this type of bike when someone is looking for anything that will encourage exercise without breaking the bank while also allowing a quick to a friends house without gearing up.

I always say that there is always someone faster than you and always someone slower. You shouldn't care what you look like... I've seen much larger than 240 on road bikes all dressed up in spandex. In fact, they are called Clydesdales and they are a passionate group of riders across all types of bikes. Don't sweat such things.

I'm glad you like it and I'm sure that with more days like today, you'll be out and about on it. For the record, we call that type of bike a flat bar road bike..I agree that hybrid is almost a marketing term and is used with so many different types of bikes it's really not applicable anymore. For what it is worth, I consider a hybrid something with a front shock and thinner than mtn tires. If more folks would get over the fear of smaller tires, the biking world would be a better place..!

Enjoy your new bike!

Dave
Yes, I did get it in Orland. Great staff. They were very patient with all my questions and gave me "time to think" when I couldn't make up my mind. No pressure to choose one bike over the others. Being able to take three different models out for a test spin sure helped.

I'm slowly getting used to it. Since I haven't been on a bike since December, it's slow going, but I know that if I keep at it, I'll be doing 20 and 30 milers pretty quick.

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