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  1. #1
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    Raleigh C200 '05?

    Hi there. I'm in the market for a new bike...I currently ride a P.O.S. Toys R Us MTB...(this one, if you're really curious). I've been doing shorter (10-20 miles) rides on roads around town lately, but I intend to go longer, and possibly start commuting. I've been looking at the '05 Raleigh C200, and I had some questions.

    First, the disc brakes. I like the idea, and I know they offer better performance in mud/rain, but is it really going to be that tangible a difference?

    Second, aside from the brakes, does the C400 really offer much advantage over the C40 or C30? Can someone explain the advantages to me?

    Third, can anyone recommend a comparable cross/hybrid in another brand? My spending limit hovers around the $400 mark, but if I can get quality for less, so much the better. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    I wouldn't bother with disc brakes unless you plan on riding in rain and mud often. That's about the only real performance difference over the C40. Compare it to the Specialized Crossroads, Trek 7200, Giant Sedona, and Cannondale Road Warrior.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  3. #3
    sarcasm meter: jerk mode santiago's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironcladlou
    Hi there. I'm in the market for a new bike...I currently ride a P.O.S. Toys R Us MTB...(this one, if you're really curious). I've been doing shorter (10-20 miles) rides on roads around town lately, but I intend to go longer, and possibly start commuting. I've been looking at the '05 Raleigh C200, and I had some questions.

    First, the disc brakes. I like the idea, and I know they offer better performance in mud/rain, but is it really going to be that tangible a difference?

    Second, aside from the brakes, does the C400 really offer much advantage over the C40 or C30? Can someone explain the advantages to me?

    Third, can anyone recommend a comparable cross/hybrid in another brand? My spending limit hovers around the $400 mark, but if I can get quality for less, so much the better. Thanks.

    I can't speak with respect to cross/hybrid bikes but I recently went through the process of looking for a hardtail MTB in the $500 price range. What I found is that bikes at that price point that had disk brakes, tended to skimp out on other stuff such as derailleurs and front suspension. I suspect at the $400 price point you will find the same.

    You basically are buying the gimic of a disk brakes at that price point and losing out on the rest of the stuff. It's not till you get to a higher price point that all of the stuff starts balancing out. Therefore, look for a bike in that price point with V-brakes and you'll end up ahead.
    First Class Jerk

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironcladlou
    Hi there. I'm in the market for a new bike...I currently ride a P.O.S. Toys R Us MTB...(this one, if you're really curious). I've been doing shorter (10-20 miles) rides on roads around town lately, but I intend to go longer, and possibly start commuting. I've been looking at the '05 Raleigh C200, and I had some questions.

    First, the disc brakes. I like the idea, and I know they offer better performance in mud/rain, but is it really going to be that tangible a difference?

    Second, aside from the brakes, does the C400 really offer much advantage over the C40 or C30? Can someone explain the advantages to me?

    Third, can anyone recommend a comparable cross/hybrid in another brand? My spending limit hovers around the $400 mark, but if I can get quality for less, so much the better. Thanks.

    I purchased a 2005 C200 and have great things to say about it. The advantage of disc brakes is that all else being equal, the wear on your rims is avoided. Also, consider that you can get better braking in wet weather. The disc brakes used are Hayes HMX-2, which are a notch above entry level.

    You get better componentry with the C200 than with the C40. You get one or two steps up in the Shimano component hierarchy. Thus far, the derailers have shifted very nicely. Finally you get Rapid Fire shifters instead of grip shifters. Don't know which you would prefer, but the moment I started using the Rapid Fire shifters, there was no going back to grip shifters (which is on the bike I bought a while ago from Wally's Mart).

    The cost for the C200 in MA was $460, inclusive of all taxes. From looking around elsewhere on the 'net, that was about the right price to pay.

    I'll leave you with one last thought. Its less important what brand of bike you buy these days, because within each brand you will get similar levels of quality (e.g. you can get the same Shimano Alivio componentry from Specialized or Trek lines). For all we know most of these brands are made by the same few big houses in Taiwan or China. Find a bicycle shop you like, and then consider buying the brand they carry.

  5. #5
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    Wow. Well thought-out advice on an Internet forum? I never thought I'd see the day...

    So the need for a new bike has become more pressing. Sunday, I was heading out for a ride on the Toys R Us monster, and at the corner about 20 feet from my house, due mostly to the terrible brakes on the thing, I went over the handlebars and out into the street. Surprisingly, this was the first time I bailed on that bike. I was fine, aside from some road rash on my hands and arms, but the bike is toast. The sprocket where the crank is (no idea on terminology) got bent. Don't ask me how. When I got back to the house, I took a hammer to the thing and managed to realign it...kinda. But it makes this horrible dying squeak when I pedal, so I'm damn sure not riding that thing any farther than the train station.

    The practical upshot of all this is that I went back to the bike shop yesterday, and tested the C200 and the C40. I did like the C200, but the difference between the two (especially in the braking area) was pretty much imperceptible to me, and certainly not enough to justify the $100+ price difference. I decided to go with the C40, and once we priced it out with all the accessories (front and rear lights, front fender, rear rack, pump, lock, water bottle and cage, and an extra-large helmet for my huge noggin), it came out to $460. Not a bad deal, if I do say so myself. Barring any financial emergencies, I'll be picking the bike up a week from Friday.

    Thanks so much for the advice, guys. You've been very helpful in the decision-making process. Oh, and jvenugop...did you happen to buy your bike from Sirois in North Attleboro?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironcladlou
    Wow. Well thought-out advice on an Internet forum? I never thought I'd see the day...

    So the need for a new bike has become more pressing. Sunday, I was heading out for a ride on the Toys R Us monster, and at the corner about 20 feet from my house, due mostly to the terrible brakes on the thing, I went over the handlebars and out into the street. Surprisingly, this was the first time I bailed on that bike. I was fine, aside from some road rash on my hands and arms, but the bike is toast. The sprocket where the crank is (no idea on terminology) got bent. Don't ask me how. When I got back to the house, I took a hammer to the thing and managed to realign it...kinda. But it makes this horrible dying squeak when I pedal, so I'm damn sure not riding that thing any farther than the train station.

    The practical upshot of all this is that I went back to the bike shop yesterday, and tested the C200 and the C40. I did like the C200, but the difference between the two (especially in the braking area) was pretty much imperceptible to me, and certainly not enough to justify the $100+ price difference. I decided to go with the C40, and once we priced it out with all the accessories (front and rear lights, front fender, rear rack, pump, lock, water bottle and cage, and an extra-large helmet for my huge noggin), it came out to $460. Not a bad deal, if I do say so myself. Barring any financial emergencies, I'll be picking the bike up a week from Friday.

    Thanks so much for the advice, guys. You've been very helpful in the decision-making process. Oh, and jvenugop...did you happen to buy your bike from Sirois in North Attleboro?

    That's exactly where I got it from. Not much experience with the store, but so far so good. One thing that concerned me with them was that they greased the chain with a very goopy lube instead of using a chain lube. Don't know if that's how the factory sent it, but I plan to take it up with them when I go to get a tune up. On the positive side, they seem to have tuned the derailers well.

  7. #7
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    Heh, well hey neighbor. Yeah, Sirois has treated me decently so far. I took my POS in for a flat this weekend. We'll see how decent they can be when I try to buy a bike for my girlfriend, though.

    So you know any good road rides in the area? I'm in Mansfield.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironcladlou
    Heh, well hey neighbor. Yeah, Sirois has treated me decently so far. I took my POS in for a flat this weekend. We'll see how decent they can be when I try to buy a bike for my girlfriend, though.
    So you know any good road rides in the area? I'm in Mansfield.
    I just drive around my neighborhood and in Cumberland RI next door. Thus far, have been confined to the back roads. In my opinion, I will have "arrived" when I can cycle flawlessly on Rte 1.

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