First time posting but I need your opinion on the differences between these two bikes. Will the Redline be able to handle single track and how does it stack up against the Cross Check? It's a lot cheaper and has disc brakes but has an aluminum frame, which I'm not a huge fan of. If you could some input about this especially how it would handle off road conditions it would be greatly appreciated.
Neither; the Redline Metro Sport isn't a cyclocross bike, just a cheap road bike with disc brakes. The Cross Check is a really heavy 4130 steel framed bike. Apples and Oranges. For $800, I would wait until Nashbar does a 20% off bikes and get this for $800: Blue Norcross: http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...2_555560_-1___
A well designed (hydroformed) aluminum bike frame will perform better that a cheap frame - be it steel, aluminum or carbon. I LOVE the CAAD9 cyclocross and road bikes, which fall into this category. That being said - I also love my Lemond Poprad Disc steel bike which has a much better steel tubeset (True Temper OX Platinum vs. standard 4130). See my pics here: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...=#post15378821
That being said, at least on the east coast, the average hipster cuclist seems to love the Surly Cross Check marketing though, so the used price is higher than I would expect. So if you decide to go that route it is easy to resell. Any LBS can order you a Surly from QBP: http://www.qbp.com/#brands.