Hey all, my first post here. Took me a while to find this forum, but it seems like a good source of info.
I did a quick search for this and didn't find too much, so please forgive me if this is a common topic.
I'm looking at hybrids / comfort bikes / etc. in the under $500 range, and one LBS (See, I picked up the jargon already) carries Ralieighs among other brands like Trek and Gary Fisher.
My question is: Are Raleighs equivalent in quality to the other brands in this price range? It looks like they offer similar specs to bikes from Trek, Gary Fisher, Kona, Specialized, and Fuji. While I'm at it, how are Schwinns doing these days? Are they still mainly department store bikes?
Any input would be greatly appreciated. I already know that Chilidog thinks Raleighs are okay - his name came up the most when I did a search for Raleigh in this forum!
2004 Raleigh Talus, 2001 Motobecane Vent Noir (Custom build for heavy riders)
Most of this comes from a mountain bike owners perspective, but the part grades should help in figuring out if their quality is to your liking.
I just got my Raleigh Talus on saturday. Great bike, beautiful paint/artwork on the frame, good choice of parts to go with it, and at a good price. Current Raleighs can be compared to Diamondback as far as quality, since they are now both made by the same company (even their contact number was the same last I checked)....Think of it like Ford vs Mercury....both make the same thing, but they cater to a slightly different market group. Diamondback being usually the younger crowd, and Raleigh being usually the older crowd (I don't really fit this mold, being 24...but still I saw it and just had to have it ).
Raleigh is very fond of using shimano drivetrains, and has their own "avenir" brand of accessories, which you will most likely find on their bikes. The lower end models either have a SR Suntour or RST suspension fork, the mid end models usually either have a beefier SR Suntour or a Judy fork, and the higher end models usually sport Manitou forks.
As far as reliability, my Diamondback Outlook has served me well, and the only problems it had were my fault...for doing things like 1 foot drops (which I am fairly sure the bike did not appreciate). It had a Shimano Tourney drivetrain, aluminum wheels, a 6061 aluminum frame, and a 50mm SR Suntour suspension fork. For a $200 bike, that was a pretty good buy in my book. I put loads of miles on that bike, and it still runs nice...It was just easier to get a new bike than upgrade that one to be what I wanted. Right off the bat though I can tell you I liked the 6061 frame better, it jsut seemed to be a smoother ride.
Between Lecanto and Hernando Florida, 6 miles due west of the Withlacoochee Trail
I've had several since 1999 but have settled on my beloved 2001 Litespeed Tuscany and 2011 Felt Z4. :-)
Hi Dave and welcome to BF.
I have a Raleigh R600. Bought it in '99 when I got back into cycling. Great bike. Quality components (all Shimano 105). You won't go wrong and it should keep you happy until you fall in love with another bike.
Bike lust is a terrible ailment.
I have a Raleigh M60 that I have had for two years. It wouldn't have been one I would have chose but my daughter won it and owed me money so thats how I came to own it. Now having said that I could'nt be more please with it. I have taken it on two rides down the west coast and have never had any problems with it. Here is a picture with it from my most recent trip. Canada to Calif.