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Hybrid Bicycles Where else would you go to discuss these fun, versatile bikes?

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Old 06-28-12, 11:06 PM   #1
drunky
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Hey new here looking for a little help! :)

Hi there!

I was looking for a hybrid to ride around town, do some fitness riding, pretty paved trails, basic riding. I thought hybrids were perfect for the wife and I to start riding but today I went into a local bike shop (we been to several test riding bikes) and the guy suggested I looked into a Specialized Hardrock 29er. He said I could put road tires on and I'll just be like hybrids but better because of the front suspension shocks, disc brakes, better gears and overall the same amount of money I'm paying for a hybrid but you get the versatility of a road and mountain when I want to. This opened a new idea since I did have an interest in some mountain riding but not for a while. My question is, is what he is talking about true? I mean I thought hybrids would still have some advantages over mountain bikes, such as stiffness, lighter, nimbleness, better suited for the road.

He told me the mountain bike on road tires will still be as fast as any hybrid bike and just as heavy if not lighter. He said hybrids are basically mountain bikes without the front shocks. I don't know if hes really just trying to get me to buy that particular mountain bike but I wanted some more information. Also its hard to compare weight between bikes as many manufactures does not list it. Any help would be great!

Bikes I've test rode so far:
Giant Escape
Trek 7.2
Cannondale Quick/Badboy
Specialized Trail
GT transeo
Raliegh Mesceo

Thanks!!
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Old 06-28-12, 11:17 PM   #2
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Well, hybrids come in all shapes and sizes, and looks like you've tried quite a few of them. There's hybrids closer to road bikes, like the Giant Rapid, and ones closer to mountain, like the Giant Escape you tried. You can find yourself a nice hybrid with that same front shock with a lockout feature (like the Trek DS 8.3 or higher), again giving you the best of both worlds. Hope you find your dream bike!
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Old 06-29-12, 12:06 AM   #3
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Welcome To Bike Forums, Drunky!

So what's the upper limit of your budget?

When do you plan to do some mountain biking?

What type of mountain biking do you plan to do?

TIA
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Old 06-29-12, 05:23 AM   #4
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I recommend buying a bike that meets your current needs out of the box.

For the type of riding you describe, a bike like the Escape seems like the right sort of thing to be looking at. The lack of suspension is an advantage of paved and well-maintained gravel trails.
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Old 07-01-12, 10:28 AM   #5
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29er is a mountain bike with large 700c wheels that rolls better over some terrain then the usual 26" wheel but is less agile on highly technical descents.
The main advantage is that big guys, riding big bikes, can have a proportional big wheel. The disadvantage is that small riders , riding small frame need to ride bodged geometries and cumbersome disproportionate wheels.
The differences between the Specialized 29er and Crosstrail hybrid are quite subtle. The hybrid has better location of rear disc brakes (for compatibility with rack and fenders), the 29er has cabling routed along the top tube rather than under the bottom bracket where (in MTB mode) it can pick up mud. The 29er has a sportier, lower stem for stability, the hybrid has a riser stem for more upright riding stance. The frames look almost identical but I can't check on the bottom bracket height which aids pedal clearance over rocks (when high) but makes mounts and dismounts harder for smaller riders.

For everyday road riding, suspension is not required. It adds weight, maintenance and is usually poorly adapted for using fenders.
Most hybrids have sufficient tyre clearance to take wide tyres, suitable for tracks and trails. For everyday riding, medium tyres (28-35mm) are more efficient but can still be used on trails.

Also, most people asking on this forum are
"Hey new here looking for a little help! "
Try and put some info into the question, eg
" hybrids vs 29er, which is best ?"
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Old 07-01-12, 05:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonathanGennick View Post
I recommend buying a bike that meets your current needs out of the box.

For the type of riding you describe, a bike like the Escape seems like the right sort of thing to be looking at. The lack of suspension is an advantage of paved and well-maintained gravel trails.
I agree with this sentiment. I think you'll end up with a bike that doesn't do anything particularly well if you try to find a bike that does everything. My recommendation is to buy a pair of nice hybrids, ride together. You do not need a suspension fork. If you dig riding and want to try mountain bike riding, get a mountain bike. I don't know where you live but around here there are TONS of mountain bikes on craigslist which makes them pretty inexpensive.
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Old 07-01-12, 06:23 PM   #7
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"Hybrids are mountain bikes without the shocks"? Hmph. Hopefully the one feeding such disinformation doesn't work at the only LBS in town...

The fact that you have a basic understanding of what type of bike will fit your needs, combined with the resources and attitude to buy from the LBS puts you ahead of the curve for a lot of the noobs of late.

What I've come to realize is perhaps the best piece of advice that I (or anyone else) can give someone just starting out is- shop for the LBS first, then allow them to work with you on model and proper fit.
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Old 07-01-12, 06:36 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by drunky View Post
My question is, is what he is talking about true? I mean I thought hybrids would still have some advantages over mountain bikes, such as stiffness, lighter, nimbleness, better suited for the road.

He told me the mountain bike on road tires will still be as fast as any hybrid bike and just as heavy if not lighter. He said hybrids are basically mountain bikes without the front shocks. I don't know if hes really just trying to get me to buy that particular mountain bike but I wanted some more information. Also its hard to compare weight between bikes as many manufactures does not list it. Any help would be great!
Is what he's saying true? Yes and no. You certainly can put slicks on a mountain bike for road use, and it may be almost as fast as the heavier hybrids. This might be a good option for you if you want to ride unpaved trails. But those shocks will certainly add weight, as does the build of the bike itself, and disc brakes add weight too. The bike will be way slower than a hybrid that's more road oriented.

My adult daughter rides a mountain bike, a Specialized Rockhopper, everywhere - including charity rides and triathlons . It's her only bike. As a former gymnast, she's very strong and muscular and actually likes the workout the heavier bike gives her. I look at it as too much work for the output. My hybrid is a more road oriented Cannondale Quick 3, which I bought when I decided that my bike with front shocks was just too slow. You've tried a few different types of hybrids there, some good choices, did any of them give you the kind of ride you were looking for?

And if you do decide to go with the mountain bike, I would suggest having your wife get the bike that she's most comfortable with.

Last edited by Bunnicula; 07-01-12 at 06:41 PM.
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Old 07-02-12, 08:14 AM   #9
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I am new to the biking scene, but if you are just riding on roads , trails, and well taken care of paths. I would go for more of an urban hybrid. According to your critieria of

Quote:
ride around town, do some fitness riding, pretty paved trails, basic riding.
These are the bicycles I would look at.

Specialized Sirrus (Sport,Elite ,Comp, Pro)
Giant Rapid 1 or 2 or 3
Trek FX 7.x ( I personally dont like, but most people like it )
Cannodale quick series
Fuji Absolute 1.0
Jamis Coda Elite

LBS around here all love specialized, and so do I. I personally recommend specialized bicycles, but its all about which one feels better.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:16 PM   #10
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Well, I don't have any experience with 29ers, but I had a quandary a couple of years ago between a hardtail or a hybrid. I've ridden a few of the Trek FX bikes and was really leaning that way but my daughter talked me into a Rockhopper so I could ride mountain bikes with her. Great bike, but I really wish I'd gotten the hybrid or a road bike. My daughter now rides horses in her spare time so I'm sitting here with a mountain bike riding mostly on local roads. It just feels heavy compared to the hybrids I've ridden and as soon as I free up some cash I'm getting something else. This mountain bike, even with slicks, doesn't feel anything like the hybrids I've ridden. Hope you're happy with whatever you decide!
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