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  1. #1
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    New to cyclocross looking for some advice

    Hello ,

    Recently i bought an older redline conquest pro that needs a bit of work. Ive taken it out to myakka state park .. typical florida terrain grass trails, roots, rocks, hog holes, deer trails... Anyway when i go out riding normally i go as far as possible because i'm looking for wildlife.

    Is there anything i can do to have a bit more of a comfortable position while i'm riding these trails? I was thinking about a flat bar conversion because i'm used to mountain bikes but after talking to a guy at my LBS it seems like its going to cost a lot (200$+). What aluminum flat bars would you all recommend if i went with this? also some shifters that might work (bike has 2 sprockets in front/9 in rear).. 2 finger short break levers preferably.. I'm really not familiar with bike terms so i'm sorry if this might seem a bit confusing.

    I was also looking at those older Rock Shox Ruby suspension forks.. and was wondering if those would be worth buying to throw on the bike and ease up the ride a bit on the trails.. every time i hit rough dirt dug up by hogs my arms feel like i've been holding onto a jack hammer. I know these shocks are only 35mm of travel because they're made for the road.. but would they help at all or even fit? My tires are 700cx33 i think. i can upload pictures if needed. thanks so much!

  2. #2
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    How much difference is there between seat height and handlebar height? Are the bars lower than the seat when the bike is level, or are the bars higher than the seat. There are two ways to get more upright - move the bars higher, or move the bars closer to the seat. Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages. Getting the bars higher may be much less expensive than a conversion to flat bars.

    Maybe all you need is an "up-jutter" stem and maybe new cables to get the bars a little higher.

    A flat bar conversion will likely require new bars, new stem, shifters and cables. It will also have some effect on the handling of the bike.

    I'd try raising the bars first.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Kopsis's Avatar
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    Gotta admit, I'm a little confused. The Redline Conquest Pro is an alloy singlespeed Cyclocross frame with horizontal track dropouts and a carbon fork. There is no obvious way to even mount a rear derailleur.

    But in general, Cyclocross bikes are designed for Cyclocross. They're designed to be easy to carry and crazy fast on relatively well groomed surfaces (grass and hardpack). They beat you up bad when the course gets rough, but races max out at 60 min, so that's a price racers are willing to pay. If that's not what you're doing, you probably have the wrong bike.

    Trying to turn a CX bike into a mountain bike (which it sounds like is what you want) is not likely to produce a satisfactory result. The geometry is wrong for flat bars, and I'm not sure you could mount a suspension fork and even get it to work. It sounds like you'd be much better off just selling it and getting a hard-tail XC mountain bike.

    I love my CX bike, but if I'm going to do cross-country riding, I break out my old '87 Mongoose steel frame mountain bike. The added weight, low gearing, and big fat 2" wide tires make it slower, but I don't come home feeling like I've gone 10 rounds with a wild boar

  4. #4
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    You make it sound like you want to ride a mountain bike.

    The first sane thing you could do to make your bike more appropriate to the riding you're doing (aside from just HTFU and riding your bike as is) is to run larger tires at lower pressures. I don't know exactly how wide a tire you can run, but maybe something around 40mm could get you something closer to what you'd like. You could also run your handlebars a lot higher and ride primarily in the drops, possibly with a dirt drop style bar. I find rough terrain easier in the drops.

  5. #5
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    get a mountain bike. Trade this one in, there's lots of used mountain bikes out there and you might be able to get what you really want straight across. You're talking about adding suspension and rough trails and raising the bars. And you are not talking about racing CX. You have the wrong bike.

  6. #6
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    Gotta admit, I'm a little confused. The Redline Conquest Pro is an alloy singlespeed Cyclocross frame with horizontal track dropouts and a carbon fork. There is no obvious way to even mount a rear derailleur.
    stick a 3 speed IGH in there, apparently you arent Racing ..

  7. #7
    Team Water Andy_K's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kopsis View Post
    Gotta admit, I'm a little confused. The Redline Conquest Pro is an alloy singlespeed Cyclocross frame with horizontal track dropouts and a carbon fork. There is no obvious way to even mount a rear derailleur.
    Older Conquest Pros were geared.

    That said, a CX bike with a flat bar and front suspension sure sounds like a hardtail mountain bike with skinny tires.

    Cannondale made a cyclocross bike with a headshock for a while. A friend of mine had one for a while and said it was nice on trails.

  8. #8
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    Thanks guys,

    You know the bike did great until i got way out into the rougher stuff, And after thinking about it the past few days i'm going to pick up a full suspension mountain bike sometime for when i plan on going out far. You all are right a mountain bike is really what i was planning to get at first, but i came across this bike sitting outside a feed store and bought it for next to nothing.

    I decided to go against modifying this bike as it does what its intended to do very well.. I considered the flat bar mod because my shifters were shot, but now ill just replace them and ride this one on some of the more groomed biking trails.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Kopsis's Avatar
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    If you're going to hang on to the CX bike (sounds like you got a great deal, so why not), you should try your hand at some Cyclocross racing The FLCX series holds events all over the state and is really beginner friendly. We have some really talented riders in the series, but even an OS&P (old, slow, and poor) rider like me has a great time The season ends next weekend with the State Finals at Little Everglades Ranch in Dade City, but it will pick back up in the fall. Check out http://www.flcx.org or the Florida Cyclocross Facebook page for details.

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