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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.

View Poll Results: Kona Jake or Bianchi Volpe?
Kona Jake 7 43.75%
Bianchi Volpe 9 56.25%
Voters: 16. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-20-12, 11:45 PM   #1
henry_b
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Kona Jake or Bianchi Volpe for city/trail riding?

I need a new bike to use for riding around city streets and off-road trails. I have been looking at cyclocross bikes because they seem to be very versatile and capable. I have narrowed it down to the Kona Jake and the Bianchi Volpe. I ride frequently, up and down a lot of hills, and in both wet and dry weather. Which bike should I buy?

Some obvious differences-
The Volpe has a steel frame... The Jake's is aluminum.
The Volpe has cantilever brakes... The Jake has disc brakes.
There are obviously other differences as well.

The Volpe- www.bianchiusa.com/bikes/road/steel/volpe/

The Jake- http://www.konaworld.com/bike.cfm?content=jake
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Old 11-21-12, 01:12 AM   #2
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I've got two Jakes (2008 & 2013), a Major Jake (2008) and a Muni Mula (1999) in my garage so my view might be a bit biased, but I voted for the Jake.

Really, I think they're both great bikes. I've got a couple of steel bikes, but I don't see the magic there -- or rather I don't see the lack in good aluminum.

I'd say ride them both and get whichever makes you happier.
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Old 11-21-12, 06:13 AM   #3
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I would recommend getting a used jake... you can probably find a really nice used one for close to half the price of that new one...
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Old 11-23-12, 03:17 PM   #4
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You could get a brand new 2011 Jake here in Columbus at Paradise Garage this weekend for <$800. I can't remember the exact price, but it's cheap. I'd still pay the difference and get the 2013, though.

Disclaimer: I own a 2010 Jake, and a 2008 Jake frame and fork which I have yet to build up. I also owned a 2005 JTS, which I should never have sold.
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Old 11-23-12, 03:51 PM   #5
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Flip a coin, both are fine.
disc brakes are good in the wet weather,
and dinged rims wont weaken braking

the rest is component picks, those can be changed.

Last edited by fietsbob; 11-23-12 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 11-23-12, 04:51 PM   #6
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Neither, get this.

http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...rip/crossrip/#
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Old 11-23-12, 05:08 PM   #7
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I have a 2012 Volpe that I use as an all-purpose city/commuting/schlepping bike. I really love it, bit many times I kick myself for not getting something with disc brakes, so if I could do it again, I'd probably get something else. This winter I think I may pick up a disc fork and convert the front to disc.
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Old 11-23-12, 06:51 PM   #8
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Any particular reason for that choice? It looks like a good bike, but Shimano 2300 is hardly Tiagra.
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Old 11-24-12, 07:28 AM   #9
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Any particular reason for that choice? It looks like a good bike, but Shimano 2300 is hardly Tiagra.
Cause I looked at one the other day and liked it. The Kona does look like a better bike, I'll have to see if anyone around here has one. Also I'm still a newb and don't know the difference from 2300 vs Tiagra. I know 24 is more that 10, so it must be better. lol
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Old 11-24-12, 07:47 AM   #10
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look at Surly
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Old 11-24-12, 09:21 AM   #11
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Cause I looked at one the other day and liked it. The Kona does look like a better bike, I'll have to see if anyone around here has one. Also I'm still a newb and don't know the difference from 2300 vs Tiagra. I know 24 is more that 10, so it must be better. lol
It's tough to find Konas in some places. They aren't as mainstream as Trek, but the Jake offers fantastic value if you can find one. And it you like it, of course. It not, then it's worth nothing. I really like Konas, though I've only ridden the Jake series. Trek makes nice bikes too, though.

I don't remember the entire order, but I think 2300 is two levels below Tiagra. Also, the new Tiagra is 10 speed, which is pretty cool, if you're into that.
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Old 12-14-12, 09:06 PM   #12
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I don't think you could make a bad choice with the Jake or Volpe. I would lean more towards the Volpe if you are looking for a more city/trail ride or the Jake if you think you might ever dabble in the cyclocross world. I also wonder if discs are really worth it in terms of dealing with flats (city bike? bound to happen) why not upgrade the brake pads with kool stops and enjoy the weight savings and less adjustments? I guess it all boils down to finding the one that feels good when you ride it. You can't make a bad choice here.
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Old 12-14-12, 11:41 PM   #13
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I don't think you could make a bad choice with the Jake or Volpe. I would lean more towards the Volpe if you are looking for a more city/trail ride or the Jake if you think you might ever dabble in the cyclocross world. I also wonder if discs are really worth it in terms of dealing with flats (city bike? bound to happen) why not upgrade the brake pads with kool stops and enjoy the weight savings and less adjustments? I guess it all boils down to finding the one that feels good when you ride it. You can't make a bad choice here.
Perfect response. For perspective, I have ridden over 38,000 miles in the last decade on 9 different road bikes of extreme cost differences. I still own 6 of the 9 road bikes I have acquired, including a $2 used Schwinn, a Moots Vamoots, a 2003 Volpe and an aluminum cross bike. For me, fit and ride quality are king and it is hard to beat the ride quality and versatility of the Volpe.
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Old 12-15-12, 03:15 PM   #14
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I also wonder if discs are really worth it in terms of dealing with flats
Disc brakes generally make it easier in my experience (exception is track ends with chainstay-mounted brake caliper).

@OP, if wet and snowy conditions are a factor, consider the JTS on that merit. Otherwise, see which is a better fit and enjoy the ride.
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Old 01-05-13, 04:43 AM   #15
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http://www.raleighusa.com/archive/2011-road/rx1-11/
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Old 01-08-13, 03:28 AM   #16
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I have a 2010 Kona JTS that I'm either going to sell it to build up my (new project) Major/Rad Jake, or Swap over the components, & sell the frameset.
Neither of my Kona have disc but they preform just as good(if not better when dialed in with proper pads) as my 2011 Opus Senteiro with discs.
The Opus is my commuter/trainer, & is a bit heavier than my Konas. The Kona is zippier on or off road, I can ride down stairs, & pretty much do anything with them.
My Opus is a better commuter with the discs, the added weight makes me feel safer around cars.
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