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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 01-23-09, 01:35 PM   #1
NebraskaRRT
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Attention Outlaw, Fantom Cross and Cyclo Owners

I am strongly considering the above for my next bike purchase. Just got into riding last year with a trek 7.5fx. If you own one of the above could you please tell me about your experience with it. Why you chose it over competition, what was the competition?, anything that you feel would be important to know. I dont believe i will be racing, just my normal 10-15mile commute to work, depending my route, and general exercise.

Thanks

Jason
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Old 01-23-09, 03:03 PM   #2
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i have the uno (different bike/frame) but i like it very muc, and i have seen lots of the fantom crosses and fantom cx bikes at the races...people seem to like them.

for commuting duty, personally i would go with the outlaw. i prefere disc brakes over rim brakes, much easier to work with i think
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Old 01-23-09, 06:16 PM   #3
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I have a Fantom CX.

The frame is the same between the Fantom CX the Fantom Cross, the Fantom Cross Pro, and the Cyclo.

It is actually a Fuji Cross Comp frame, even the build kit is very similar between the fantom cross (other than cockpit pieces).

The bike is very stiff, as far as the Fantom CX goes it isn't very light ( about 24 stock), but I think the versions with the carbon fork and better wheels would be lighter. The geometry is good, and so far offroad it has held up. I changed out the sora for 105 9 speed shifters I've had laying around, and with some ligher wheels and road tires it feels about 22 lbs.

I bought the F CX because I wanted a winter beater / commuter / crossbike / tourer to add to my quiver. I got it for $460 with the ebay live.com deal that was going on last month. The deal was better than any thing I could have gotten with my prodeal, so I'm quite happy with it.

The cockpit pieces are not the greatest across most of the line apart from the Pro, so if you are picky about those parts plan on upgrading.

es
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Old 01-23-09, 07:09 PM   #4
Tobias Greenich
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I've got a Yellow Fantom CX, I've owned it since the beginning of November.

First things first: Be VERY sure of your sizing before you order. It's not your first bike, so it might not be a problem if you had your Trek sized for you, you can carry that over. Be sure to try and dial it in to the particular frame, check around the cyclocross forums to find how you should choose one. I read bunches of threads on CX sizing and whatnot before I picked mine.

If you don't have a size, at the very least you should try the fit calculator at CompetitiveCyclist.

http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za...LCULATOR_INTRO

You should also be aware of where you are purchasing it from and how they work. I'll leave that out of this thread, but check around the forums so you know what you're purchasing, how the transaction will work, and what could happen if you have a problem.

I must mention, however, that you need to be secure in doing some of your own wrenching after you get it, or be willing to take it to a bike shop and pay for the final assembly.

As far as the bike itself goes, mine has been brilliant. I use it to commute 5 days a week, and I've done two cross races on it as well as singletrack. It's held up wonderfully, and aside from replacing the seat (Which I've still got to get around to doing) and pedals, as well as basic maintainance, it's pretty much good to go stock.

If you're comfortable with all of the above, by all means, go for it. It's a good deal, and a great bike.
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Old 01-23-09, 09:14 PM   #5
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I guess I should throw that Cross Pro in the mix as it would only be $100-200 more than the others. Part of me really would like disk brakes, but would the component upgrade be worth it to ditch the disks? I really dont know squat when it comes to components...I hear about 105 all the time...I am guessing as far as quality it goes....sora, tiagra, 105 and ultegra? I know its a noobish question

Jason
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Old 01-23-09, 11:27 PM   #6
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I guess I should throw that Cross Pro in the mix as it would only be $100-200 more than the others. Part of me really would like disk brakes, but would the component upgrade be worth it to ditch the disks? I really dont know squat when it comes to components...I hear about 105 all the time...I am guessing as far as quality it goes....sora, tiagra, 105 and ultegra? I know its a noobish question

Jason
I have a Moto' Fantom CX. From what I hear (and read), the only difference between those shifters are weight. If you're unsure of what size to get, go to a bike shop that carries Fuji 'cross bikes. The ones I go to always have at least one in stock. Anyways, those are the same frames as the Moto's. Take it for a test ride and determine what size you'll need.
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Old 01-23-09, 11:38 PM   #7
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I got the Cyclo. Out of the box I wasn't that into it, but swapping out the bars for skinnier, traditional bend ones, and the seatpost out for one with zero set-back improved things a lot.

The frame is good stuff. I use it for road rides, a little commuting (I prefer commuting on track bikes though so put that in your pipe and smoke it), off-road, and it will see road and cross races this season as well.

The wheelset is pretty crappy - straight gauge spokes, soft alloy nipples, Alex rims that went out of true a good 3 times in a month (though they seem to be holding up now that I gave them a good proper stress relieving), and Formula hubs. As soon as the sidewalls get worn too thin from braking, I'm going to handbuild some proper Open Pros up for it.

It's a great bike to buy as a base and put upgrades into IMO. Can't complain about the 105/Ultegra/FSA goodies that came on the bike.
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Old 01-25-09, 10:25 AM   #8
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I've got a grey Fantom CX and I couldn't be happier with it. I'm gonna recommend upgrading the pedals ASAP because the bike just comes with crappy toe straps. I just upgraded to Crank Bros Eggbeater SL's. That being said, it's an awesome bike that you can ride hard and put away wet. I was out riding once and I zipped past a couple of guys on their roadies and then took a turn onto some grass (you have to on this one corner otherwise you pretty much die in traffic) and I guarantee you these guys were like "what the hell is he doing, he's gonna kill his bike". Except it was great.

Furthermore,
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Old 01-25-09, 10:25 AM   #9
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I used to ride a Gary Fischer MTB and I must have added 7 or 8 mph to my average speed. It's a great bike. Light and zippy. I recommend it all the way. Five stars.
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Old 01-26-09, 10:12 AM   #10
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I really dont know squat when it comes to components...I hear about 105 all the time...I am guessing as far as quality it goes....sora, tiagra, 105 and ultegra? I know its a noobish question

Jason
2200, Sora, Tiagra, 105, Ultegra, Dura Ace.
Personally, I own 1 tiagra bike and 2 Dura Ace Bikes. For 95% of Cross/Commuting functions, Sora or Tiagra will be more than sufficient (I don't have any real experience with 2200). It is my opinion that the mid-lower end of the Shimano lineup are still very nice parts that benefit from trickle down technology.

I swapped my Dura Ace shifters out on my Major Jake for tiagra shifters and have no complaints. It just does not make sense to be running $400 shifters on a bike that is guarenteed to go down a few times a year. This is especially so when tiagra works so well.
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Old 01-26-09, 11:57 AM   #11
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So as far as long term value and upgrade potential is going with the Outlaw with, disc brakes, 105/tiagra with Tiagra shifters better then the Cross pro that is Ultegra throughout? Never had a disc on a bike, wasnt excited about how fast the brakes would fade on my trek 7.5fx.

My trek has Denore and tiagra with Denore shifters...so It will be an upgrade regardless.
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Old 01-26-09, 03:11 PM   #12
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i think the fantom pro is on sale now for 999...if you dont have a brake preference, id go with that one
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Old 01-26-09, 10:08 PM   #13
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I initially wasnt including the fantom pro cause it was 400 more or so but with it on sale its definitely in the mix. I think its down to the Pro and the Outlaw.
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Old 01-29-09, 11:21 AM   #14
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i think the fantom pro is on sale now for 999...if you dont have a brake preference, id go with that one
Go to sportymamabikes, you can get the Fantom Cross for 1/3rd the retail price. And frankly, the difference between the Cross and Cross pro is minimal.
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Old 01-29-09, 11:23 AM   #15
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I initially wasnt including the fantom pro cause it was 400 more or so but with it on sale its definitely in the mix. I think its down to the Pro and the Outlaw.
First of all, the pro and the cx are almost exactly the same. And you can get the cx for about $500 on sprtymamabikes.com.

Second of all, if you want a bike for cross, dont get disc brakes. They'll clog with mud. The high clearance cantilever brakes on the fantom are much better for mud clearing.
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Old 01-29-09, 12:28 PM   #16
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Second of all, if you want a bike for cross, dont get disc brakes. They'll clog with mud. The high clearance cantilever brakes on the fantom are much better for mud clearing.
Really? Seems like all the MTB guys use discs and don't have a problem stopping. You may get mud on built-up around the calipers, but the brakes seem to stay clean and work well. Is CX different for some reason?

If you're going to ride/commute in wet weather, I'd definitely recommend disc brakes. I'm surprised at just how poorly all of the rim brakes I've tried work in the wet...
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Old 01-29-09, 01:02 PM   #17
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First of all, the pro and the cx are almost exactly the same. And you can get the cx for about $500 on sprtymamabikes.com.

Second of all, if you want a bike for cross, dont get disc brakes. They'll clog with mud. The high clearance cantilever brakes on the fantom are much better for mud clearing.

is this post a joke? please say it is...if not, then to the OP, disregard this post

also, you do realize that sprtymama is bikesdirect's wife..right?
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Old 01-29-09, 10:16 PM   #18
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I knew that the two were essentially were working together, and thats fine. I could certainly see that people might run across them on ebay vs the bikesdirect site. Heck the only reason i found there site was from on this forum.

The main reason I have narrowed it down to the pro and outlaw is...1. the Pro is on sale for $999 so close to the other bikes i was considering,.outlaw, cross, windsor. 2. I doubt I will race, may like to in the future, but disc brakes sound nice. One thing that does concern me is with the outlaw is that the hubs are apparently at 130mm vs 135mm so my options for wheels if i would need it are slim to none. It seems like overall value is better with the pro.

Definitely seems like you get more bike for the money with the options as least comparing similar bikes.

Jason

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Old 01-30-09, 07:18 AM   #19
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I would love to get a disc version in ti, and build it as a rigid mountain bike. I've got three cx bikes, and another on the way in October, so my wife would literally murder me dead!

I can still live vicariously through others posts.
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Old 01-30-09, 11:31 PM   #20
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I've been meaning to update my thread on the Outlaw I got a month ago.

I'm liking the disc brakes on it a lot for the snow and slush. No fade, and plenty of control. The rotors do need to be wiped off with rubbing alcohol every once and a while though or they will start making noise.

The components on the Pro sound nice, so I can't say one way or the other which to get. I just 'had' to have the discs. I've been more than happy with the tiagra/105 mix, and the cost to replace in case of a slam is worth considering.

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Old 02-01-09, 03:22 PM   #21
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Actually, yeah. In cyclo youre getting on and off constantly to get over barriers. Plus, its like mud soup most times. Disc brake calipers will get clogged. If you look at cyclo bikes, the Salsa La Cruz is one of the few with disc brakes.
Very strange argument. I suppose most MTB riders with discs just avoid this 'mud soup' you speak of? They bring out their old canti brake MTB when it gets muddy? I have trouble imagining that. I also don't see how getting on and off your bike would clog calipers. Most CX bikes have cantis because of UCI regs, as far as I know.

In the limited experience I have with discs, they seem to keep their stopping power a lot better in conditions where cantis and Vs would be fading or virtually non-functioning. The only time I experienced performance problems with my BB5 discs was when the rear caliper was not aligned properly and after the bike had been sitting in freezing rain for 9 hours.

With the obvious performance advantages, I bet we'll be seeing more CX and road/touring bikes with discs over the next few years.
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Old 02-01-09, 11:10 PM   #22
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Actually, yeah. In cyclo youre getting on and off constantly to get over barriers. Plus, its like mud soup most times. Disc brake calipers will get clogged. If you look at cyclo bikes, the Salsa La Cruz is one of the few with disc brakes.
What does getting on or off the bike have to do with it? And have you personally every had disc brakes clogged with mud? I think you are talking out of your ass.
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Old 02-01-09, 11:23 PM   #23
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What does getting on or off the bike have to do with it? And have you personally every had disc brakes clogged with mud? I think you are talking out of your ass.
I agree. I've ridden downhill in what amounted to muddy streams for miles and miles and I've never had mud clogged disc brakes.
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Old 02-02-09, 06:49 AM   #24
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one of the biggest selling points of disc brakes is that it keeps the braking surface OUT of the mud, because the braking surface is so close to the hubs. unless you are riding through mud that is as deep as your hubs, which is impossible, you dont have to worry about clogging a disc brake with mud.

ive ridden my mtb through some SERIOUS mud, and never had a problem with my disc brakes
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Old 02-02-09, 07:12 AM   #25
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Actually, yeah. In cyclo youre getting on and off constantly to get over barriers. Plus, its like mud soup most times. Disc brake calipers will get clogged. If you look at cyclo bikes, the Salsa La Cruz is one of the few with disc brakes.
Disc brakes are the future of cyclocross. In ten years they'll be on every bike you see at a race. Needless to say, they work a lot better in all conditions. Truthfully, this isn't even an area of debate.
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