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Old 08-11-18, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
I didn't want to respond until jevnk did .... I live in a place where snow is not even a word, while he actually bought a bike just to ride in the snow. He lives in part of America well north of the Arctic Circle (almost.)

However, i did live in the North for a while ....

I think that if you really want to ride in the snow .... not just in the winter, but on streets covered with packed snow or snow over ice (happens when the sun hits the snow, the melt-water covers the pavement, and at night freezes into an ice layer under the snow---crashed on that enough to not try any more) Then you really need a rigid mountain bike with tires between 6 and 7 cm wide at least. Jefnvk uses (I think) 100-mm tires. And for ice and packed snow you need studded tires, which i don't think even come in road-bike widths.

Also, in the U.S. a lot of communities dump salt and/or sand on the roads in winter to accelerate melting or to provide traction. The salt eats everything metal and almost everything plastic---it is really corrosive, and the salt water gets all over everything and inside of everything---really wrecks a bike.

The sand is the same ---it gets inside all the mechanical bits and eats them away.

Most people who ride in really bad environments have a bike just for that. Cheap, simple, with fat tires.

If the roads are kept completely clear where you live, then the difference between a 32-mm tire and a 42-mm tire will be no difference. On snow .... you want the widest tire you can get. If you are riding through mud ... again, that eats up a bike over time. And again, you want the widest tire you can get.

The question is ... will 42 mm make that big a difference over 32 mm (the max the B'Twin can fit)? it really depends how much mud and snow you plan to ride through.

If I were still living up north, i would use a bike with 28-42 mm tires and stick to the cleared pavement as much as possible because packed snow and ice are slippery, and when riding though snow, you have no idea what is underneath there. Could be a branch, a curb, a huge pot hole, a giant break in the pavement .... so I would stay out of the snow and avoid the mud unless i was specifically out to have fun riding in mud. But I wouldn't use my regular commuter bike for that---to o risky. I'd buy a 50 or 100 crap bike and beat it up in the mud.

Jim_from_Boston commutes year-round in Massachusetts, which can have some serious snow. Check out his posts, He has a really nice CF commuting bike, and pretty good metal commuter for rain and bad weather, and an old, beat-up, rusty mountain bike for real snow.

In your case, with your budget and since you are considering an Al bike (no rust, but salt and silt will still hut it) you don't need a rain bike right away .... but for serious snow I don't know if any f the ones you are looking at will cut it.

Jefnvk thinks the gearing on the Serious would be okay for road riding, and the serious would be the best value for mud, cobbles, and road, which you describe as where you would ride. i trust him pretty much. I'd get the B'Twin, he'd get the Serious. I think either would work. Up to you to decide---do you lean more quick road bike or more all-around dirt-cobbles-pavement bike?

if you like riding dirt and gravel ... the Serious might be the best choice just because you would have more off-road options. If you plan to ride mostly groomed dirt trails and more pavement .....

Fact is, i don't want the responsibility of picking for you, in case you take my advice and regret it later.
Thank you for the so detailed analysis. It is clear now that a cheap bike to get it beat up in tough conditions is the way.

I tried today to B'twin 540 and while it was stunning the size wasn't right and nobody cared helping adjusting things. I saw it was very thin and smooth surfaced tires ( a sign of high slipperiness?)

I also retried the gravel Serious bike at another store and that was a much better experience since they had my size (56 cm frame ad i am 185 cm tall) and i had an employee always on my back adjusting everything.
I will have to go to another location for the B'twin 540 since it was so elegant and light. I couldn't just buy the gravel just yet when knowing that for the same price i can get something lighter with a higher tier of components.

But, the gravel feels like the way to go since it feels so sturdy and forgiving if i may. What is your input on the matter? Is a racing-road bike like the B'twin 540 "too dangerous" for me, a guy with no experience in road cycling, or it just a matter of time until i get used to it? Plus, it is a better value for the money.

And to answer the question, no the winter is not near enough to what i saw in picture for the roads. They are clear, but with salt and mud and kinda get icy.

Sorry for the long, jus trying to squeeze out some knowledge.
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