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Old 06-04-12, 01:31 PM   #1
Dilvish
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Question New Hybrid Advice Needed

I want to get a Hybrid bike for about $500-700. I'd be riding it on about 25% gravel, 25% dirt trails and 50% pavement. So I'd like something that is comfortable and good for distances of like 10-20 miles on pavement but can handle trails and gravel when needed, my driveway is about 1/2 mile of gravel so it'd be nice to ride up and down it. lol
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Old 06-04-12, 02:12 PM   #2
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Welcome To Bike Forums, Dilvish!

Got a couple questions for ya...

How tall are you?

Are you more concerned about speed or comfort?

TIA

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-05-12 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 06-04-12, 02:46 PM   #3
Dilvish
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Originally Posted by SlimRider View Post
Welcome To Bike Forums, Dilvish!

Got a couple questions for ya...

How tall are you?

Are you more comcerned with speed or comfort?

TIA
Thanks! I'm 6'2 174. I'd say comfort over speed, I want to be able to go whatever distance I want without feeling in pain afterwards because the handlebars were too low/high, the seat wasn't just right, etc. It's not a race (for me anyway), but at the same time I don't want to be on the pavement pedaling like a madman and going no where. lol
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Old 06-04-12, 03:06 PM   #4
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I'm sort of in the same boat myself, so I'll be watching this thread closely. I'm really leaning toward the Giant Roam, but also considering the Specialized Crosstrail.
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Old 06-04-12, 05:59 PM   #5
SlimRider
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Originally Posted by Dilvish View Post
Thanks! I'm 6'2 174. I'd say comfort over speed, I want to be able to go whatever distance I want without feeling in pain afterwards because the handlebars were too low/high, the seat wasn't just right, etc. It's not a race (for me anyway), but at the same time I don't want to be on the pavement pedaling like a madman and going no where. lol
Alright Dilvish!

I would recommend the following:

1) The Cannondale Quick CX ~ $725
www.cannondale.com/2012/bikes/recreation-urban/recreation/quick-cx/2012-quick-cx-4-21069

2) The Schwinn Sporterra Comp ~ $660
www.schwinnbikes.com/bikes/hybrid/2012-sporterra-comp-mens-14564

3) The Giant Roam 1 ~ $620 www.giantbicycles.com/en-us/bikes/model/roam.1/9024/48881/

MTN Bikes

4) The Marin Muirwoods 29er ~ $700
www.rei.com/product/825657/marin-muirwoods-29er-bike-2012

5) The Motobecane Fantom 29 Comp ~ $700
www.bikesdirect.com/products/motobecane/fantom29_comp_xii.htm

6) The Jamis Exile Sport ~ $700
www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/hardtails/exile/12_exilesport_bk.html

* For loose gravel, inches thick, MTN bikes will do much better. Since they're 29ers, once you pick up speed, it'll be easier to maintain it.

Good Luck!

PS.

If you don't have a bunch of loose gravel in your driveway and your dirt trails are mostly hard packed, then just ignore the mountain bikes, altogether. Of course, the Muirwood is known as an urban bike, more so than a MTB. I guess it's more like an urban assault bike.

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-04-12 at 10:43 PM.
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Old 06-04-12, 06:53 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Dilvish View Post
Thanks! I'm 6'2 174. I'd say comfort over speed, I want to be able to go whatever distance I want without feeling in pain afterwards because the handlebars were too low/high, the seat wasn't just right, etc. It's not a race (for me anyway), but at the same time I don't want to be on the pavement pedaling like a madman and going no where. lol
Humm, most MTB's have very low gearing so they'd "leave you pedaling like a madman", LOL, I recommend the following:

Jamis Allegro X series
Trek DS (dual sport) series
Specialized Crosstrail series

These are dual sports and can handle the "dirt" part of your equation but still do a decent job on road. Some suspension for the ruts but "trekking/hybrid gearing", 48/38/28 or 46/36/26 chainwheels with the 11-32 or 34 cassettes (rear cogs), make the climbing a bit easier and still get your heart pounding on the flat road too! JMHO, YMMV, test ride lots of what different brands are selling as "Dual Sports" or Cross Overs and I think you'll find the perfect bike for YOU! ENJOY.
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Old 06-05-12, 12:30 PM   #7
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Hey there Dilvish!

I'm an empiricist at heart. So let's begin by taking the Trek Mamba 29er and the Trek 8.5 Dual Sport for example...

Trek 8.5 Dual Sport

Crank: 48/36/26

Cassette: Sram PG - 950
11-32 (9 speed)



Trek Mamba

Crank: 44/32/22

Cassette: Shimano HG20-9
11-34 (9 speed)


Personally, when it comes to suspended forks, I say, if you're going to have one, have a good one. Dual Sports don't have quite the caliber of suspended forks that quality MTN bikes do. The gearing on Dual Sports is pretty close to what you have on 29er MTN bikes. Of course, the DS gets the slight nod, on having the higher ratio for speed. There's not much difference there. The difference enters the picture, when you begin to consider the tire width. However, with more width, come more mass. Since inertia is mass dependent, a wider tired MTB is going to be slower on the take off, than a not so wide tired Dual Sport. OTOH, once that mountain bike gets going on rough terrain, it will be easier to control it, due to the wider tires and the quality suspended fork, working in unison, together.

I say, don't believe me, until you test ride them both. Besides, you've just got to try a 29er sometime during this lifetime anyways. Try the Marin Muirwoods 29er first! Of course, you already know that REI has an awesome 100% satisfaction guarantee. Apparently, if you either keep your receipt, or become a member and things go south with your bike, say...six years from now, you'll be entitled to either an even exchange, or a full refund.

Immediately after you've test ridden the Muirwoods 29er, try the Trek Mamba, so that you'll be certain about the 29er experience. Then take written notes about the experience while still fresh in your mind. Finally, try the Trek 8.5 Dual Sport. Make certain that you ride them all on either loose gravel or rough terrain. That's just for the experiment!

During the riding experiment, make certain that you also ride over terrain that will be comparable to that of your own, or at least terrain that will approximate it. Return home. Sit down with a nice fresh pot of tea and reminisce while you savour the flavor. Assess your experience and determine the bicycle of your choice.

I have no personal stake in which type of bicycle that you purchase. I only care that you get any new bike you want and have fun with it!

Good Luck, my friend!

PS.

Just remember:

If it feels good on the Muirwoods, the Mamba might feel just a tad too good!

* The Muirwoods does not have a suspended fork and you really don't need one...

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-05-12 at 02:31 PM.
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