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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.

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Old 01-13-07, 05:59 PM   #1
illogic262
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Question....

I'm looking into getting a cross bike but can't really afford to own a road and cross specific bikes. So I'm wondering what would be the most versatile bike for my money, where I could just swap out the wheels depending out what type of riding I was doing? I haven't had time to look at my options yet, the bianchi axis any good for what I'm looking for?
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Old 01-13-07, 06:50 PM   #2
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What's your budget? Are you going to race? Train? Commute? The axis is a decent bike, but there are tons of other options. With more a little information, you can get better insights. I'll throw out the oblugatory Surly Crosscheck: a very versatile bike for a decent price.
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Old 01-13-07, 07:57 PM   #3
illogic262
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My budget is up to 1,200, so I'll probably be looking at used bikes. I doubt I'll be racing but if I get hooked its not out of the question. Mostly I'll be using it to get around and train, and to just have fun. Thanks for any advice btw.
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Old 01-14-07, 12:49 AM   #4
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I tried that with a Crosscheck. Even with road wheels on it, it wasn't quite fast enough for riding with other roadies. I'm not sure if this is a problem with all cyclocross bikes, and it might have been my particular setup, but the Crosscheck also didn't handle fast twisty downhills very well. It had a tendency to slide the rear wheel around corners. I now have a dedicated road bike (Cannondale System Six) and there is big difference in overall speed and downhill handling. On the other hand, the Crosscheck was surprisingly good on single track mountain bike trails. But if you want one bike to do everything, a cyclocross bike is a pretty good choice. The gearing on the Bianchi Axis is especially sweet for a do everything bike - most cyclocross bikes have too limited a gear range for anything but racing.
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Old 01-14-07, 09:55 AM   #5
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Cross bikes are truely versitile bikes, as long as the one you pick fits you (as with any bike). I've used my Crosscheck for literally all types of riding including communiting, road racing, mountain bike racing, touring, and everything in between. Mine was my primary road bike for 3 years. With that being said, remember the old adage; "jack of all trades, but master of none" would describe a cross bike. When I got my new road bike (Serotta CDA), there was NO comparison in handling, especially high speed decending, sprinting, and very long rides.

If what you're after is a commuter or a city bike, or if you're the type of rider that rides all the time, on any terrain, and can only afford one bike, a CX bike is for you. If you're only going to be using it on paved streets, or have any plans to do club rides, get a road bike. And yes, the Axis is a good CX bike for the money, as long as it fits you.
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Old 01-14-07, 09:09 PM   #6
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A good Cross bike would be very versatile and changing out the wheels would be a great option. I would look at one of the lighter steel bikes like Gunnar or Lemond Poprad both made with lighter steel tubesets. I have a road, cross, and mtb and each one is good in its own right. If I had to choose one bike it would be the cross. I am going to have couplings placed in the frame and will be using this as a travel bike. I will carry road and cross tires and have the most versatile bike to travel with.
eBay has had some great bikes for sale recently both Gunnar and Poprad. Don't worry about club rides with the Hammers and half wheelers you probably wouldn't enjoy riding with them anyhow. I bought my Torelli steel CX bike on eBay and swapped out from the Shimano to a Campy triple Daytona 9 spd group. I have a set of road and CX wheels. You don't need slicks you can ride with Continental 4000s on the road for performance wheels. I am having no trouble keeping up with my local riding pals.
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Old 01-15-07, 10:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deanster04
A good Cross bike would be very versatile and changing out the wheels would be a great option. I would look at one of the lighter steel bikes like Gunnar or Lemond Poprad both made with lighter steel tubesets. I have a road, cross, and mtb and each one is good in its own right. If I had to choose one bike it would be the cross. I am going to have couplings placed in the frame and will be using this as a travel bike. I will carry road and cross tires and have the most versatile bike to travel with.
eBay has had some great bikes for sale recently both Gunnar and Poprad. Don't worry about club rides with the Hammers and half wheelers you probably wouldn't enjoy riding with them anyhow. I bought my Torelli steel CX bike on eBay and swapped out from the Shimano to a Campy triple Daytona 9 spd group. I have a set of road and CX wheels. You don't need slicks you can ride with Continental 4000s on the road for performance wheels. I am having no trouble keeping up with my local riding pals.
Agree with all you say I was just wondering, where are you getting your couplers put in? I assume you'd be getting the S&S system. How much does the conversion cost?
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Old 01-16-07, 12:14 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Mtn Mike
Agree with all you say I was just wondering, where are you getting your couplers put in? I assume you'd be getting the S&S system. How much does the conversion cost?
I have been talking to a couple of bike builders here in Boulder on the feasibility and they say no problem. I have asked for a quote from both. the tubing is 1" and the couplers will be silver soldered in place. The bummer is the fact that I will need to get the bike repainted. I will probably put it off for 1 season. I am guessing $600 for the addition of the coupling itself. Coupler I think is in the neighborhood or $350 alone. If you have OS to tubing that requires TIG it may be more.
S&S has a great hard case as well.
If you have a good local or regional builder they could give you a quote for budget purposes.
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Old 01-19-07, 02:25 PM   #9
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The Raleigh rx1.0 is around $1100. That's the MSRP, but you can find them new for less. I have one and it's great. I picked it up after cross season ended and I sold my old Cannondale XR800. Stock, it's around 21 pounds, which is pretty average. I'm currently using it to ride on because I don't want to submit my road bike to the harsh realities of winter. It's certainly not as fast as my road bike, but it handles well. It's fitted with what you would expect for that price range, EXCEPT, the fork is an Easton 90 top of the line cross fork. I don't know how Raleigh made their price point with that fork, but I don't care.

By the time Cross season rolls around I'll have her trimmed down a little, and it'll be a great cross bike. Right now it's doing just fine on the road while I put down those base miles.
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Old 01-19-07, 03:58 PM   #10
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Trek XO1's are going for about what you have to spend, Ive raced mine, Toured on it Rode fast road club rides with and ride it at night with lights cant beat the bang for the buck.
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Old 01-19-07, 08:39 PM   #11
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If you already have a road bike you cold just get a cross frameset and have most of the parts moved over. Most decent sized shops have the x0-1 frameset for around $450. You can find a new cross check frame/fork for $300 on the web if you look hard.
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Old 01-21-07, 07:41 PM   #12
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maybe a Kona Jake......not the JTS.
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Old 01-22-07, 07:20 AM   #13
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Specialized Tricross. You can prolly pick up a used or closeout '06 Comp for less than $1200.
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Old 01-22-07, 10:12 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by illogic262
My budget is up to 1,200, so I'll probably be looking at used bikes. I doubt I'll be racing but if I get hooked its not out of the question. Mostly I'll be using it to get around and train, and to just have fun. Thanks for any advice btw.
A cross bike is great for all around riding. Put some cross tires on it and it will fly offroad and put street tires on it and you're riding with the group. A pure road racer is a wee bit faster and a mountain bike is make to climb in the saddle so a cross bike can be beaten by specific purpose bikes. But for training, recreation and just hanging out it's difficult to beat a cross bike.

Look into the Trek XO-1.
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