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Cyclocross and Gravelbiking (Recreational) This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

Entry level recommendation

Old 07-14-19, 05:47 AM
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El Gato27
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Entry level recommendation

Hello,

I ride mainly hike and bike trails, mostly paved, some packed dirt, some combos. About 15 miles rides. I have two different hybrids, one with 28 tires, and one with 38 tires, depending on which one I'm riding. Additionally I prefer drop bars due to different hand positions vs flat bars. Have been thinking of switching to a cyclocross bike. Would like recommendations for entry level cyclocross bikes. Strictly recreational riding.
Thank you.
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Old 07-14-19, 08:24 AM
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entry kona rove
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Old 07-14-19, 08:38 AM
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How about just converting your hybrid bikes with dropbars?
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Old 07-14-19, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by El Gato27 View Post
Hello,

I ride mainly hike and bike trails, mostly paved, some packed dirt, some combos. About 15 miles rides. I have two different hybrids, one with 28 tires, and one with 38 tires, depending on which one I'm riding. Additionally I prefer drop bars due to different hand positions vs flat bars. Have been thinking of switching to a cyclocross bike. Would like recommendations for entry level cyclocross bikes. Strictly recreational riding.
Thank you.
new or used?

Corporate discount gets you a Willard 3 for $1,299
TRP mech brakes and apex 1x, Entry but a bit better than some entry
https://www.raleighusa.com/willard3

you have Cannondale SORA Topstone coming in at $1049
https://www.cannondale.com/en/USA/Bi...ntid=undefined

Salsa Journeyman is pretty entry level. various builds from 700 to 650 1x to 2x (I'd skip the Shimano claris versions)
actually other than, having mount options for bikepacking they are falling short with sub par brakes, cheesy frame design , and QR axles
https://salsacycles.com/bikes/journe...eyman_sora_700

shop around local shops... my local shop has a 2017 CAADx tiagra for $950
link is just to show bike.
https://www.cannondale.com/en/Great%...a-faf65832dc30


however shop used bikes for deals, I just sold my 2014 Trek Crossrip which was taken care of and upgraded for $500
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Old 07-14-19, 11:09 PM
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With the exception of the thru axle, the Topstone and the Journeyman may as well be the same bike, at the Sora level.
I'd like to see Salsa upgrade the frame in 2020 to a thru axle setup.
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Old 07-15-19, 09:24 AM
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I am in the same boat. I have a hybrid - 2012 Specialized Sirrus. I was talking to my local bike shop and they suggested I look at the Marin Nicasio (I do not have enough posts to send the URL - sorry) . I am going to wait until the 2020s come out and see.
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Old 07-15-19, 10:31 AM
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I thought about converting my hybrids to drop bar hybrids. The cost was not cheap--drop bars, shifters, etc...

Thanks for the suggestions on the bikes. Will see what the LBSs have.
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Old 07-15-19, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by nesteel View Post
With the exception of the thru axle, the Topstone and the Journeyman may as well be the same bike, at the Sora level.
I'd like to see Salsa upgrade the frame in 2020 to a thru axle setup.
NOT even the same!

Cannondale brings years of Aluminum frame experience (cough ** CAAD ** cough) , and their SAVE tech to the AL Topstone.

Salsa had a generic frame made with no technology, and they left the bottom half of the down tube Un-welded (unfinished) at the BB to allow for the internal cable exiting the frame. This one design will make the bike a noodle , prone to vibrations, and also very inefficient in regards to power!
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Old 07-15-19, 11:17 AM
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There's Cannondale aluminum and then there's everyone else.
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Old 07-15-19, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
NOT even the same!

Cannondale brings years of Aluminum frame experience (cough ** CAAD ** cough) , and their SAVE tech to the AL Topstone.

Salsa had a generic frame made with no technology, and they left the bottom half of the down tube Un-welded (unfinished) at the BB to allow for the internal cable exiting the frame. This one design will make the bike a noodle , prone to vibrations, and also very inefficient in regards to power!
To say Salsa designed it with no technology is just disingenuous. Does Crackanfail bring experience to the table, surely. Can another entity develop a quality frame, certainly (see the previous Warbird Aluminum models)
. As the stiffness and ride quality on the Journeyman, I've noticed no noodly characteristics or buzziness for that matter, and power transfer has been just fine. That's on all surfaces; paved, dirt, gravel.
Our opinions are going to differ, and I'm certainly not saying the Topstone is not a quality ride at a nice price.
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Old 07-15-19, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by nesteel View Post
To say Salsa designed it with no technology is just disingenuous. Does Crackanfail bring experience to the table, surely. Can another entity develop a quality frame, certainly (see the previous Warbird Aluminum models)
. As the stiffness and ride quality on the Journeyman, I've noticed no noodly characteristics or buzziness for that matter, and power transfer has been just fine. You wouldn't, you have to pedal harder than you do. That's on all surfaces; paved, dirt, gravel.
Our opinions are going to differ, and I'm certainly not saying the Topstone is not a quality ride at a nice price.
My opinion aligns with 1,000's of riders that seek CAAD frames for crit racing.
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Old 07-16-19, 01:55 AM
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Originally Posted by nesteel View Post
To say Salsa designed it with no technology is just disingenuous. Does Crackanfail bring experience to the table, surely. Can another entity develop a quality frame, certainly (see the previous Warbird Aluminum models)
. As the stiffness and ride quality on the Journeyman, I've noticed no noodly characteristics or buzziness for that matter, and power transfer has been just fine. That's on all surfaces; paved, dirt, gravel.
Our opinions are going to differ, and I'm certainly not saying the Topstone is not a quality ride at a nice price.
Calling Cannondale crackandfail invalidates pretty much everything you say.

Especially when it comes to Salsa who can't even make a fork correctly.
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Old 07-16-19, 04:14 AM
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I haven't been in the market for a while, but the Fuji Yari seemed like a decent deal the last time I looked.
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Old 07-16-19, 06:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
My opinion aligns with 1,000's of riders that seek CAAD frames for crit racing.
1- So if I find thousands of posts by crit riders who have purchased Scott, Trek, Giant, etc bikes...does that mean all the frames from those brands frames are absurdly stiff in the BB joint too? Of course it doesnt, but thats what you are effectively trying to say here. Your Trek being a perfect example, of this, actually.
2- I think the minority of recreational gravel riders benefit from(much less need) a BB joint that is as stiff as a CAAD crit frame. If that were the case, there would basically not be any steel frames on the market.

Carry on. Ill bounce out of the thread now.
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Old 07-16-19, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
1- So if I find thousands of posts by crit riders who have purchased Scott, Trek, Giant, etc bikes...does that mean all the frames from those brands frames are absurdly stiff in the BB joint too? Of course it doesnt, but thats what you are effectively trying to say here. Your Trek being a perfect example, of this, actually.
you can find what ever you want to find, that won't change the fact of what the Cannondale CAAD reputation is. Even this Forum has the CULT of CAAD thread. 409 pages to be exact. Does any other manufacture of aluminum frames have such a following? NOPE!

CAAD is the Superior Aluminum frame, this is the reputation it has. It is what it is. cry about it, laugh about it, ignore it, or acknowledge it. You can't stop a reputation.


Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
2- I think the minority of recreational gravel riders benefit from(much less need) a BB joint that is as stiff as a CAAD crit frame. If that were the case, there would basically not be any steel frames on the market.

Carry on. Ill bounce out of the thread now.
Benefit/Need wasn't the argument. The argument was Journeyman and the Aluminum CAAD Topstone was the same bike at the Sora level, minus thru axle. NO they are NOT! that is not limited to stiff BB either. There are many reasons the CAAD frame is superior to the Salsa Journeyman. Your 'want/need' argument won't change any of that.
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Old 07-16-19, 07:14 AM
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Originally Posted by El Gato27 View Post
Hello,

I ride mainly hike and bike trails, mostly paved, some packed dirt, some combos. About 15 miles rides. I have two different hybrids, one with 28 tires, and one with 38 tires, depending on which one I'm riding. Additionally I prefer drop bars due to different hand positions vs flat bars. Have been thinking of switching to a cyclocross bike. Would like recommendations for entry level cyclocross bikes. Strictly recreational riding.
Thank you.
BTW shop around and ride many brands!

Fit will be your biggest enjoyment. BB drop/height numbers, and Reach #'s will be huge players in finding the bike you like to ride. Even a stand over will change how you feel about a bike Especially if you hit many stop lights etc.
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