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Civia Hyland initial review

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Civia Hyland initial review

Old 03-08-10, 11:38 AM
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Civia Hyland initial review

Ok,so I was at a local shop this weekend,with absolutely no intention of buying another bike,when I look up and see a trio of Civias hanging in the rafters. I've looked them over before at this shop,and like most folks thought they were sweet,but lost interest after seeing the price. Well,the shop must really want to move them,because they had them marked $1000 off. They had one 56 left,so I figured what the heck,I'll do a test ride. 15min later I was hooked,and pulled out the plastic. I picked the bike up the next day,got fitted with a perfect length stem,and took the bike on a 20ish mile ride home to give it a shake down. Here's my initial review.

First the bad. The headlight sucks. It's like a pimple on a supermodel. Yeah,she's still hot,but there's a zit. For being seen,it works just fine,but the weak incandescent bulb isn't going to spotlight a trail. Plus it dies as soon as you come to a stop. Def gonna upgrade this. With all the other nice bits,you'd think they would've specced a decent light,or do like Raleigh on their Alley Way and just give you the hub and let you get your own light. The second thing is the trigger shifter. I've read maybe a dozen reviews of this bike,and noone said boo about it,so it's prolly just me,but I'm not loving it. It functions just like a regular Shimano derailleur trigger,but in reverse. The thumb lever upshifts,the finger trigger downshifts. Not that it's hard to remember,but it just doesn't feel right. I'm so used to blipping the trigger the rapidly change up that this thing weirds me out. Of course,I'm right handed and insist on wearing my mess bags on my right shoulder,so it's probably just me. Still a big improvement over a twist grip.

Now the good: everything else. The bike's weight is pretty good considering(digital fish scale says 29lbs 5oz),and it feels much lighter when riding. Handling is excellent,it turns quick without being twitchy(feels like a cross bike). Riding position is comfortable,the swept bar feels good without making the front wheelbarrow when standing up and climbing. Shifting is slick,brakes offer lots of feel and feedback,and the tires felt good in high speed turns. Gear range felt pretty good,although I may consider going up a tooth in the back. I do a monster hill almost every day(Sibley hospital to AU,for the locals) and there are times when I'm just not feeling all that up for it. The fenders were quiet,only rattling when I hit a decent bump,and they offer plenty of coverage;the front comes way down to the point that adding a mudflap would be a waste of time. Haven't checked them with a caliper,but I'd say you should be able to get 35's under them,maybe even some 35 cross knobbies or studs. The chain guard was also quiet,and I'm digging not having to rock a geek strap. Haven't used the rack yet,but looks set far enough back that heelstrike shouldn't be an issue. The overall impression I'm left with is that this is a slick high end machine.

I can understand the $2k+ MSRP,but just couldn't see dropping that kind of dosh when other brands have bikes that are 90% as nice for a whole lot less. But at the clearance price it comes in pretty close to or even cheaper than it's competition,only with nicer bits. I'd definitely recommend this bike for anyone who wants a commuter with some performance,esp if you can find one at a discount.



https://www.flickr.com/photos/2668435...7623450198375/
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