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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 07-17-12, 07:14 PM   #1
azforme
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Making first CX purchase soon, have narrowed it down but looking for advice/recommend

I am looking for a cyclocross bike that rides similar to a road bike but is durable enough to go on pretty easy loose dirt trails on a daily basis. I think my high end budget is $1500. I'll ride 25 miles daily around 4 times/week. Below are the models I've looked at and would appreciate opinions on these or others which may be worth looking at. Thanks in advance:

Salsa Casserole or Vaya
All City Space Horse
Bianchi Volpe
Specialized Tricross
GT GTR CX Cross Pro
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Old 07-17-12, 09:30 PM   #2
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I am looking for a cyclocross bike that rides similar to a road bike but is durable enough to go on pretty easy loose dirt trails on a daily basis.
Have you considered a road bike? Seriously, bikes are more durable than many people seem to think and if tire size/tread isn't an issue for you then a road bike might really do. If you want/need knobby tires, of course, then a CX bike is a good direction. The best way to decide is to go out and ride a few. None of the bikes you listed strikes me as not being up to the task. I could pick my favorite from the list, but there's no reason to think that would be the one you'd like the best.
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Old 07-18-12, 03:53 AM   #3
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I would ask yourself two questions to help narrow down the choices.

What tire size do I need?

Do I want disc or cantilever brakes?

Road-racing bikes fit tires in the 700x23 to 700x25 range. Any off-road travel would need to be on well maintained crushed limestone that is firm and dry.

Sport road bikes can fit tires in the 700x28 to 700x32 range. This is wide enough for easier trails in good condition.

Cyclocross bikes can fit tires in the 700x35 to 700x40 range, depending on model. This allows for off road travel in wet or sandy conditions.



Disc brakes are ideal if wet pavement or muddy travel is a regular part of your cycling. Cantilever brakes work very well when dry, but lose some performance when wet. Disc brakes will add a little weight and will add cost.
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Old 07-18-12, 08:23 AM   #4
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Dual Sport bikes are made to be ready to fit racks and mudguards,
and the 700c35 wide tire is adding to versatility.

So many people come to the Cross thread actually not needing a competition
Cyclo Cross bike.. they remain stripped down , not even a waterbottle mount
is needed, as the races are laps, for 45 minutes.. hour max..

OP all those available for test rides, locally?
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Old 07-18-12, 10:43 AM   #5
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In the same boat

I'm considering purchasing a Redline Conquest Pro, 2011 model. I've test ridden a TriCross and liked it however I have a friend who has the Conquest Pro and loves it. It's light weight and has good geometry compared to some competitors. Hope you enjoy the search for a good bike!
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Old 07-18-12, 11:14 AM   #6
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Jump on that '11 Conquest Pro while you have the chance. I got one earlier this year, and haven't regretted a single thing about it.
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Old 07-20-12, 12:47 PM   #7
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All are available except GT GTR from Performance Bike. They'll order one into the store if I want. My only question with the GT is the quality of the bike. Is it really a bike that comes with the quality of the original price of $2,500? If so, I'd have them bring it in because the 2011 model is now $1,300. My impression of GT is that it's a ok but not great manufacturer. If it's really more of a $1,300 bike with an overinflated original price, then I'm not overly interested. Thougths?
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Old 07-20-12, 01:01 PM   #8
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AS far as 'Quality', Its a spongy term.. Read the Frame warrantee ,
how long do they stand behind the materials and workmanship
used by their manufacturing Sub-Contractor?

Trek Its Lifetime of the original Owner , Names of QBP's branded frames . 3 years
components ,are made by some one else, separate coverage, usually a year.

shops assembly and after the sale backup, is local Mgmnt choice.

Lots of reputations of brands were formed decades ago ,
then the name, and its Rep, was sold off as a Commodity.
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Old 07-20-12, 01:48 PM   #9
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I don't see anything obviously wrong with the GT. The value comes mostly from the components. I would expect that the frame is solid, but not innovative.
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Old 07-20-12, 02:18 PM   #10
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Who, in your opinion, would you say has the most innovative?
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Old 07-20-12, 02:23 PM   #11
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Is a road bike really going to hold up on mostly bike paths consisting of loose dirt and small to mid sized pebbles?
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Old 07-20-12, 03:32 PM   #12
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Who, in your opinion, would you say has the most innovative?
That's hard to say. I wouldn't describe any of the frames you listed as innovative. That's OK though. What I meant with the GT, and this applies to most bikes you'd get from Performance, is that they will just take a standard design and farm it out to a reliable manufacturer in Taiwan to keep costs down. Some of the big name companies are constantly refining things on their frames to reduce weight by a few grams or increase stiffness by a few percent or whatever. The results are great, but you pay a lot for a fairly marginal improvement. As long as you're talking about aluminum or steel frames, where the manufacturing process is well-known and scales easily, the cost-cutting production methods tend to produce bikes that 99% of consumers would be happy with. Carbon frames are a slightly different story, but just by going to carbon you're already paying a premium for marginal gains.

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Is a road bike really going to hold up on mostly bike paths consisting of loose dirt and small to mid sized pebbles?
The bike is definitely up to it. The only question is whether or not you are happy with the feel of the ride. What Barretscv posted about tire size is spot on.
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Old 07-20-12, 07:06 PM   #13
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Check out the raliegh furley/roper.
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Old 07-20-12, 09:05 PM   #14
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Based on recommendations, much appreciated by the way, I am going to look at a few road bikes with bigger tires.
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