General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Help with my first Bike

Reply

Old 08-10-18, 02:39 AM
  #1  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Help with my first Bike

Hello community,

i am a new cyclist and i would like to ask some suggestions about my new bike. I used to ride a cheap trekking / hybrid that did the job very well for what it was. Now i want to elevate thing a bit. I am looking for a bike around 800 euros give or take and sisnce i am not sure about sizes and fits i try to test any bike i find in local shops ( so online shopping is kinda out of the game). I will be using the bike for commute and casual riding in the city ( 2 hours tops per time). Where i live there are a lot of cobblestone roads and the bike lane is not always asphalt so i was thinking to diverge from a road bike, since i am also a big guy.

I have tried only fuji bikes since these are what the dealers had , plus some in-house brands.

I tried the Jari Steel 2.5 which was 850 and felt nice and comfy, also quite heavy. Also another gravel bike from a local store's brand which was 800 but having a tier or 2 higher components in the shimano grouptier and aluminium frame.

I also tried the Absolute 1.7 with aluminium frame and Shimano Altus and lighter that the latter. It came at 650 euros and felt like my previous bike concerning the stance, so it felt like home. The Absolute makes more sense in terms of value for money but i am concerned about the thin tires in the cobblestone and more importantly i am thinking about the Jari all the time. There was also the Absolute 2.1 at a lower end and the 1.3 with a carbon fork and Shimano Sora and a few kilos off at 900 euros.

I do not know if the Jari is worth the money for the specs, and i should be looking for hybrid bike for city riding. Please let me know what you think. Thanks a lot!
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 04:12 AM
  #2  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
I don't know the Absoulte, but I checked out the Yari line about a year ago .... I actually bought one, but then returned it for a Sportif, because I knew i would end up mostly on pavement and would need to buy a second set of wheels.

I would think if there is an Al Yari with CF forks and Sora it would be well suited to the type of riding you describe. Nice fat tires can take the pain out of bad pavement, and the bike looks tough enough to take the vibration. As I said, I have the Sportif, and have a couple friend with various Fuji road bikes, so I know they are made well.

If you could post links? I know the site won't let you yet, bt you can do "http://-xxx-www.--xxx-xxxbikename--xx--bikesite---xxx---model-number" kind of thing.

One thing---if you buy a bike you will likely be riding it for years. if you need to spend an extra hundred up front .... spread that over five or so years and suddenly it isn't a hundred euros, it is a few pennies each day to get a bike which you enjoy a lot more.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 05:12 AM
  #3  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Thanks for the fast reply.

The Jari line with Aluminium frames and quite more expensive above the 1K region. Even the 850 now feels like a bit of a stretch in the budget. I have requested from my bike to shop to check out the Jari 2.3 or even 2.1 if the have them and also anything from the sportif lineup but i am wating for them.

I am having trouble with the links but everything can be found under fuji bikes website.
Absolute 1.7 / 1.3
Jari Steel 2.5 / 2.3 / 2.1
Serious Grafix Black-Orange_earth 2018 (shop's own brand, good value)

All the above i have tried in person.

Cheers
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 05:46 AM
  #4  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
Thanks your Your quick response. i will look them over.

Yes, the Yari i was looking at was fairly expensive. But consider .... whether waiting a month and increasing the budget makes sense. Whatever you buy could be "Your Bike" for the next five years, and nothing is worse than thinking, "I wish I had got the XXX instead."

Well, actually ... what is worse it buying the parts to upgrade. I have done that and That is expensive.

I will check out those bikes. All i can really say is that I have a Fuji because ti was by far the best value per dollar, and everyone I have ever talked to who has one seems to agree. Not saying they are the best or anything, but if that is the brand you settle on, you won't be buying bad stuff.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 06:25 AM
  #5  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
Absolute; The 1.3 (Fuji Bikes | Absolute 1.3) has some features which, in my opinion make it Much better than the 1.7 (Fuji Bikes | Absolute 1.7).

First, hydro discs. Much stronger braking performance.

Flat-mount discs---this is now the standard. I guess it transfers the forces more directly to the fork and with less leverage.

Carbon fork---Really sucks up the bumps better. Not a shock absorber---but it mutes the vibrations, the buzzes and rattles which increase fatigue. Same fork I have on my Sportif.

Both have threaded bottom brackets. Octa-link is no longer manufactured. You might be advised to buy a spare now …. It should last 10,000 to 20,000 miles (depends a lot on how much rain-riding you do) and you could probably replace the bearings …. But because it is Shimano –proprietary, if you change the BB you would need to change the cranks.

The 1.7 has a square-taper BB …. Still plenty of them around and still a decent selection of cranks for them.

The 1.7 with its triple front ring is definitely geared for mud and gravel and steep, steep hills. I think the 50-34 with an 11-32 cassette should be plenty unless you plan to ride mostly on forest trails up mountains. Neither is bad in any way.

The big difference between the Absolute and the Sportif seems to be flat bars versus drop bars. I have extensive experience with both and prefer drop bars for anything over about 25 miles … but I did all my riding (car-free at the time, so I rode a lot every day) on a Bridgestone MB4 with a flat bar. It absolutely works.

If I were planning 50-mile rides I would add bar ends at least just to have a different posture available, and the width of the bar (you can cut it but cannot stretch it---but flat bars are cheap) and the angle of the sweep is important. If it fits you,.. nothing wrong with flat bars at all.

One thing about Performance Bikes---they often have “Double Points” and “Triple Points” weekends, when you can sign up as a “Team Performance” member for $30 for a year and get free points which can be traded for merchandise.

I got my $100 Sportif for $800 on a triple points weekend, and had $300 to put towards merchandise for the rest of the year.

Another thing about Performance Bikes---they sometimes have “Special” bikes which don’t show up on the Fuji website. My Sportif 1.0 LE was like that---different parts and pieces than any of the Fuji factory builds.

I think Performance has some specislty bikes built at the Fuji factory each season which they think will sell better than the regular Fuji models. Same frames, just different parts mixes and different prices.

Sometiems the regular models are better deals, sometime the Performance versions are. Worth watching.

One more thing about Performance …. You can test a bike, and then order something else. If you know your frame size but they don’t have exactly what you want you can mail order---also, if you buy a bike mail-order, they are Really good about taking it back.

You can bring it to your local performance shop, even if you bought it online, an d trade it in or get credit. Useful in case you get the wrong size or something.

You will want to make sure your local Performance store does that. It may vary.

Re: the Jaris----you are right---expensive and heavy. Really meant more for gravel and packed dirt, not so much for streets. (Fuji Bikes | Jari 2.1) (Fuji Bikes | Jari 2.5)

I would think that for most pavement, a bike with a carbon fork and 32-35-mm tires ought to be okay, even for bad pavement, and also for most gravel/dirt roads, so long as you weren’t riding MTB single-track. If you plan mostly to ride on pavement and well-groomed paths and trails, the Jari might be overkill.

I’d love one, but I know I wouldn’t use it much.

The Sportif 2.1 is pretty good (Fuji Bikes | Sportif 2.1) ----five pound lighter. It doesn’t have disc brakes, but I’d rather have good rim brakes than cheap mechanical discs. If you ride in the rain a lot $10 for some Swiss-stop or Kool-stop orange/black pads …. All the stopping you could want.

I would ask at the shop how wide a tire it could fit.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 06:58 AM
  #6  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Wow, what a detailed response. Thank so you much.

I unfortunately do not have a Performance shop remotely close where i live. My rides will be mainly/almost completely on road/pavement and cobblestone. I tested the Jari on such surfaces and felt quite robust and steady. It had a kind of certainty when riding.

Absolute felt nice but the drop handlebar are something i would like for my main bike. I have looking at them for a long time and doing heavy mods is not my style. I am not sure if that will be the deal breaker for Absolute, which seems to be a great all-round bike. I have requested Something from the Sportif line up at my local store so lets see how that happens.

I was directed to B'twin 540. I read a lot a good feedback for the back. I am a bit concerned since i haven't heard of the brand before. But the specs speak for themselves, especeially for the price (!!!), Carbon fork, shimano 105 and 9 kg for just 750 euros.

Do you have any opinions on the matter? Another concern is that this bike looks a bit fragile. I don't know if it can handle me cause i weigh around 95 kg.

Cheers
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:02 AM
  #7  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Quick follow - up. The winter i very heavy where i live.

How do road bikes/racing bike like the Triban 540 behave in the rain/snow compared to the Jari for example?

Thank you so much
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:12 AM
  #8  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
One thing about Performance Bikes---they often have “Double Points” and “Triple Points” weekends, when you can sign up as a “Team Performance” member for $30 for a year and get free points which can be traded for merchandise.
I'm guessing if he is talking prices in Euros, he lives nowhere near a Performance

Also, from my understanding, the same people that own Fuji own Performance/Nashbar

Originally Posted by MichalisLaz View Post
Quick follow - up. The winter i very heavy where i live.

How do road bikes/racing bike like the Triban 540 behave in the rain/snow compared to the Jari for example?

Thank you so much
If you're riding/commuting in snow regularly, I'd stay far away from road/race bikes. I'd suggest looking at studded tire availability in your location, and figure out what sizes they come in. That will tell you what your bike needs to accommodate regarding tires in the winter months.

As to your choices, if you haven't yet seen a Jari, know they come with a pretty flared handlebar. I personally like the style, but not everyone does.

Regarding your options, any of them will realistically suit your needs just fine. Some are a bit nicer than others, but pick the one that fits your budget and fits you the best, and go with it, there's not really a bad choice there.

I personally love the looks of that Serious Grafix, but thats just my aestetics opinion!

Last edited by jefnvk; 08-10-18 at 07:16 AM.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:16 AM
  #9  
Gresp15C
Senior Member
 
Gresp15C's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 2,058
Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 390 Post(s)
Originally Posted by MichalisLaz View Post
Quick follow - up. The winter i very heavy where i live.

How do road bikes/racing bike like the Triban 540 behave in the rain/snow compared to the Jari for example?

Thank you so much
If you want to ride during the winter, I suggest making sure a bike has enough space in the frame for snow tires and fenders. The three challenges during the winter are: 1) Ice and slippery conditions. 2) Road salt and the inconvenience of keeping your bike clean during cold weather. 3) Operating the controls of the bike (brakes and gears) with heavy gloves or mittens.

Consider a 2nd bike for winter use. It can be more utilitarian because you probably won't be taking as many 50 mile recreational rides in deep snow, unless you're crazy, in which case, get a 3rd bike.
Gresp15C is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:19 AM
  #10  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
That B’Twin 540 looks awesome. It has everything I would want. It can fit 32-mm tires, it has 105, triple-butted frame, CF fork, it is light—and it apparently has threaded, external bottom bracket like the Hollowtech II. Good deal.

I weigh Considerably more than you and I use some pretty spindly wheels without issue. As far as the frame goes … you can see the welds. They look quite good. I wouldn't worry about the frame breaking.

I read a whole bunch of B’Twin reviews too. Even discounting for hype, the parts spec and the numbers are great.

Seems this brand is new to Europe and the UK, coming out of France and trying to make a name for itself with a low-price, high-spec entry level bike. I have never ridden one, but it looks like a super value. It beats out all the Fujis … even my own beautiful Sportif 1.0.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:24 AM
  #11  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
Seems this brand is new to Europe and the UK, coming out of France and trying to make a name for itself with a low-price, high-spec entry level bike. I have never ridden one, but it looks like a super value. It beats out all the Fujis … even my own beautiful Sportif 1.0.
They were all over in France. They are the store brand from Decathlon, the closest US equivalent would be something like Dicks or the old Sports Authority, a big box sports retailer. Think current day Nishiki bikes, but equipped a bit better and priced closer to LBS price points.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:25 AM
  #12  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
As to your choices, if you haven't yet seen a Jari, know they come with a pretty flared handlebar. I personally like the style, but not everyone does.

Regarding your options, any of them will realistically suit your needs just fine. Some are a bit nicer than others, but pick the one that fits your budget and fits you the best, and go with it, there's not really a bad choice there.

I personally love the looks of that Serious Grafix, but thats just my aestetics opinion!
I tried the Jari at my local bike shop and felt very nice. It was a smaller frame (54, i am 185cm in height), but i am waiting for them to bring the 56 for a test drive.

About the Serious. It is an in-house brand. What do you guys whink of this? Is there a risk connected to that? Or even i will get good support for the shop since it's their product? Value for money seems nice, rides very well. Compare to the Jari, the latter felt for sure, like it new what it was.
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 07:45 AM
  #13  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Originally Posted by MichalisLaz View Post
About the Serious. It is an in-house brand. What do you guys whink of this? Is there a risk connected to that? Or even i will get good support for the shop since it's their product? Value for money seems nice, rides very well. Compare to the Jari, the latter felt for sure, like it new what it was.
I cant read German well enough to figure this out, but what is the frame and fork material? Other than knowing that, it looks spec'd pretty much the same as the Jari 2.1. Probably would be the best value of the bunch, as it is marked a couple hundred Euros off its MSRP.

I can't speak to the specific manufacturer or the retailer you are looking at, but my main bike is a "store brand" only sold through one outdoor chain retailer here in the US. No issues with it or the quality or the overall idea of the process. I don't think my wife's Specializeds are any better quality.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 08:48 AM
  #14  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
I couldn't find a good link for the Serious .... i got the same link focused only on the change in price over time. But hey .... Fuji is sort of performance Bike's "store brand." I have a Dawes, which I got from an online discount chain and rode from Los Angeles to Washington DC (well, I rode a couple other bikes too, but that bike got ridden every day, pretty much all day, for 42 days, maybe several thousand kilometers. I just took it to the hardware store to go shopping last night---great bike.

Basically, Every one knows how to make a good steel or aluminum bike frame, and everyone buys from the same pool of parts suppliers. The house-brand parts like the stems and seat posts are probably made in the millions in some factory in Shenzhen China and sold to two dozen different companies and badged to suit. If you have a German bike made by a German company .... I get the frame was built in China and sold by a Taiwanese company, and all the parts with the German store's logo were made there also to the same or almost identical specs and a million other parts and a hundred thousand other frames.

At some point, you set a budget, you pick the bikes that have the best parts within that budget, and you ride them all. if one of them really feels right to you .... yeah, there you go.

Two years from now, if you feel the need, you sell the bike for half what you paid, Pay another €700 on top of the €350 from the sale, and buy an even better bike which is better suited to your needs

Or … ten years from now you are riding that same bike and love it as much as the day you bought it.

You really cannot lose.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 09:08 AM
  #15  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Link: https://m.bruegelmann.de/serious-grafix-black-red-white-712483.html

Under the big yellow button, hit "Weitere Produktinformationen" then "Ausstattung". Should be able to figure out what is what from there.

Basically a 2x10 Tiagara, 46-30, 11-32, with Spyre disc brakes and 35mm Schwalbe GOne tires.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 10:13 AM
  #16  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
Thank [email protected]

I'd worry that a 46/30 crank would be too small for road-riding. Great for gravel, which is what the bike is designed for, but too low (IMO) for pavement. I have a 48-38-28x 14-34 on an old Cannondale and I spend all my time in the top two gears and the big ring---and it is often too slow (Rather, i cannot spin fast enough.) 46x11 is probably pretty close to 48x14. (Actually, if I did the math right ... not too bad?)

I still like the B'Twin better, personally ....
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 10:56 AM
  #17  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
I still like the B'Twin better, personally ....
For strictly road riding, I'd agree. Where I don't think it pans out is regularly commuting on cobblestone and dirt paths, while one CAN do it on 23s, it is hardly more ideal than a gravel or flat bar hybrid that can fit 40s ( and likely fenders) or better. Especially so, when tossing snow in.

The gearing on the Serious would run from 25-115 gear inches, which is more than enough top end for me at least. A cadence of 60 has you over 20mph, and 90 has you nearly at 31
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-18, 01:36 PM
  #18  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
For strictly road riding, I'd agree. Where I don't think it pans out is regularly commuting on cobblestone and dirt paths, while one CAN do it on 23s, it is hardly more ideal than a gravel or flat bar hybrid that can fit 40s ( and likely fenders) or better. Especially so, when tossing snow in.

The gearing on the Serious would run from 25-115 gear inches, which is more than enough top end for me at least. A cadence of 60 has you over 20mph, and 90 has you nearly at 31
I am certainly not going to argue snow-riding with you.

What sold me on B'Twin is that it can handle 32-mm tires (without fenders, though) I kind of figure anyone who Really wants to ride snow---not winter, but Snow ... will need 2.1 tires with metal studs ... I would buy a cheap rigid MTB .... though I don't know if they salt the roads in Germany.

Not sure I would be happy with the gearing ... but it isn't about me being happy. if the OP gets a good idea of what to expect, he can hopefully buy something that works for him.

Last edited by Maelochs; 08-11-18 at 04:22 AM.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 04:16 AM
  #19  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
For strictly road riding, I'd agree. Where I don't think it pans out is regularly commuting on cobblestone and dirt paths, while one CAN do it on 23s, it is hardly more ideal than a gravel or flat bar hybrid that can fit 40s ( and likely fenders) or better. Especially so, when tossing snow in.

The gearing on the Serious would run from 25-115 gear inches, which is more than enough top end for me at least. A cadence of 60 has you over 20mph, and 90 has you nearly at 31

Couldn't reply earlier due to forum rules. Not sure if i understand correctly but you say that in winter conditions the road bike will not make it, and on the other hand the gravel bike will be under performing for road usage?

Bottom line is, since winter is coming (pun intended), which bike- or bike type would be more suitable to do everything (of course not extreme snow etc. Who is the chameleon of the bunch?
Thanks a lot!
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 08:16 AM
  #20  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
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.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 09:50 AM
  #21  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Haha @Maelochs, I actually live closer to the equator than the north pole, and nowhere the Arctic Circle, but it feels like I'm there all winter, I do understand snow

Even for my 5" fat bike, I bought a set of studded tires for extra grip in winter. I wouldn't be riding around snow without something really wide or studded. I'm sure it can be done, but I don't particularly like crashing

Originally Posted by MichalisLaz View Post
Couldn't reply earlier due to forum rules. Not sure if i understand correctly but you say that in winter conditions the road bike will not make it, and on the other hand the gravel bike will be under performing for road usage?

Bottom line is, since winter is coming (pun intended), which bike- or bike type would be more suitable to do everything (of course not extreme snow etc. Who is the chameleon of the bunch?
Thanks a lot!
If you're truly planning on riding in winter, I couldn't recommend the road bike. I simply don't see road bikes out n the winter by me, I'd never attempt it. If the BTwin can actually fit 32s, it could fit the narrowest studded tires out there, but in MY opinion, for MY riding, there is far more upside to the gravel bike on the road than the road bike off the road. My gravel bike is my regular road bike, my skinny tire road bike sits in a corner and I probably should just sell it. To me, the gravel bike is the chameleon, that is why one is my regular bike.

That said, I should probably ask how much winter are we actually talking? Are your sidewalks and roads covered all winter, or do you get a couple centimeters here and there but its mostly clean? Do you regularly have ice on the paths (ice is where the studs really come into play)? In any case, with cobbles and dirt paths, wider tires are simply going to be more comfortable.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 09:58 AM
  #22  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
This is my "road" bike, in reality a gravel bike. Ive taken it 115km in a day (actually, the day that pic was taken), I dont feel there is much of a downside on the road for my uses. The only time I really ride my actual road bike is when I go to a park near me with a nice 10k circuit that I can crank out fast laps.




And my "winter bike", although if I only had one bike it'd be plush studded tires on my gravel bike for any winter needs. This was merely a present to myself for winter fun with my cashed out leftover vacation when I left my last job



Last edited by jefnvk; 08-11-18 at 10:10 AM.
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 10:00 AM
  #23  
jefnvk
Senior Member
 
jefnvk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Metro Detroit/AA
Posts: 7,419

Bikes: 2016 Novara Mazama

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3135 Post(s)
Also, a good overview on studded tires and winter riding: http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/studdedtires.php
jefnvk is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 03:44 PM
  #24  
MichalisLaz
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 12
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
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.
MichalisLaz is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-18, 05:14 PM
  #25  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 9,260

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 98 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4115 Post(s)
What it really comes down to is which bike you like better.

Everyone talks about weight, and components and all that ... but while some of my bikes are really light, the rest are pretty heavy. I have 9-speed Tiagra, 8-speed Alivio/Claris, 10-speed Tagra, 105, and Ultegra .... they all shift and stop.

When you are on a bike, which group set you have simply doesn't matter. Tune up what you have so it works,and ride. How much the bike weighs compared to some other bike doesn't matter. Sure a lighter bike will go up hills a few percent easier---which you probably won't even notice, because it is a few percent-- and it is easier to carry a lighter bike upstairs if you live on the second floor. otherwise, a few pounds don't much matter to how much you will enjoy riding.

Try a B'Twin in your size, adjusted to fit you. if you like it better than the Serious, buy it. if you like the Serious better, buy that. if you cannot make up your mind, get a used bike for $50 and shop around again next spring (though traditionally in the U.S. this is a good time to get end-of-season sales. On another hand, when manufacturers bring out the 2019 models, sometimes they will discount the 2018 models to clear shop floor space.)

Jefnvk would recommend one bike. I would recommend another---not because either is Better, but because we ride differently and look at riding differently. if it were me i would want Both bikes ... but I can't afford any more.

Once you have finally gotten a good test on the B'Twin, then it really is up to you. Which one, in your imagination, do you picture yourself riding? Which one do you think would be more fun?

Either will do the job equally as well as the other. neither is "better." Both are different. I cannot tell what will suit you, your personality ... you might get the Serious and never ride a single trail and love it ... or you might put fat tires on the B'Twin and go gravel-riding every weekend and twice during the week. So long as you Enjoy the time on the bike, then you bought the right bike.

But that is just my point of view and might not work for you.
Maelochs is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service