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Trek FX 7.4....Jamis Coda Comp.......Giant Escape

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Trek FX 7.4....Jamis Coda Comp.......Giant Escape

Old 06-04-14, 08:46 AM
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Daddy Wags
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Trek FX 7.4....Jamis Coda Comp.......Giant Escape

These are the 3 bikes I am looking at. I have gleaned a lot of info online....especially on this Hybrids forum.

I'm an old road biker, 71, who has been riding a street set up mountain bike for the past 15 years. I want a new bike and don't think I have to settle for a comfort bike just yet. I was thinking about a relaxed geometry road bike but this old body needs to not bend over quite as far. Also, when I'm really pooped at the crest of a hill, those hybrid shifters and brakes are "right there".

The advice I hear on this forum a lot is to buy the bike that feels and fits best. That is easier said than done. Where I live, up on Washington's Olympic Peninsula, there are not a lot of bike shops. And many of these shops don't carry the bikes I am interested in....or the model......or the size. SO, I thought I would ask for a little help from the folks here on this forum.

As you may have noted, my 3 bikes on the list all have carbon forks and I would prefer 32 spoke rims and 32 tires, which they all have.

I was able to ride a 7.3 FX which did not have the carbon forks and was way too small for me. The Giant dealer near by didn't have an Escape to ride but may get some in. A couple years ago I went to Seattle to try out some bikes at a Jamis dealer and rode a Coda Sport for 5 minutes in terrible traffic and it was too small

I would like to buy locally and we have a fine Trek dealer near, a not so able Giant dealer close, and no Jamis bike shop. I do plan to head out again in an attempt to ride these chosen bikes. I would say, as of now, I am leaning toward the Trek FX4....because of the dealer and this bike just appeals to me..

To be honest, now that I am older, comfort means way more to me than it did years ago. So, the most important question I have is whether the Jamis steel bike is way more comfortable to ride than the Trek in the opinions of those who have been aboard both.

And, lastly, to those older riders who transitioned from a road bike to a hybrid.....did you find it a positive experience?

Thanks.
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Old 06-04-14, 09:21 AM
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Speaking as an older cyclist as well, all I can say is that a standard road bike with interrupter brakes is just as comfortable as riding a hybrid, since you're mainly riding on the hoods anyways. That said, if you're not into racing, touring, or endurance riding, then a Performance hybrid should be just what the doctor ordered.

The three bikes that you're interested in are really great bikes! I therefore, applaud your impeccable taste in hybrids!

Ordinarily, I say go for the Coda, but if there's no Jamis dealer in the area, that would be just a big inconvenience for no good reason. The same could be said of the Escape, about an all too distant Giant dealer. Since you have a Trek dealer conveniently locate right there, close to your residence, then just deal with Trek! The FX is a wonderfully splendid series in hybrids, and IMO the 7.4FX is the best deal of the entire line-up!

Therefore, I say, go for it!
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Old 06-07-14, 01:07 AM
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With comfort being an increasingly popular factor for you, I wonder if the Iso-zone rear "suspension" feature of the Trek 7.5FX would be to your liking.
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Old 06-07-14, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
With comfort being an increasingly popular factor for you, I wonder if the Iso-zone rear "suspension" feature of the Trek 7.5FX would be to your liking.
I was thinking, just yesterday, that a move up to the 7.5 FX for the Iso-zone feature may be a good idea for a little more comfort. So, I called the Trek LBS and asked them. The guy on the phone was vague and I got the impression he really didn't know. In fact, he thought the only benefit of a carbon fork was lighter weight.

So, I ask the question here.......Would a move up from the 7.4 FX to the 7.5 FX, to get the Iso-zone feature, improve the bike's comfort? The LBS doesn't have a 7.5 in stock so I can't compare.
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Old 06-07-14, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Daddy Wags View Post
I was thinking, just yesterday, that a move up to the 7.5 FX for the Iso-zone feature may be a good idea for a little more comfort. So, I called the Trek LBS and asked them. The guy on the phone was vague and I got the impression he really didn't know. In fact, he thought the only benefit of a carbon fork was lighter weight.

So, I ask the question here.......Would a move up from the 7.4 FX to the 7.5 FX, to get the Iso-zone feature, improve the bike's comfort? The LBS doesn't have a 7.5 in stock so I can't compare.
You should perhaps pop into this thread(https://www.bikeforums.net/hybrid-bic...l#post16829693) as the poster 2702 had this to say about his 7.5FX when asked to compare it to his new Sirrus bike :
"In terms of comfort compared to my old Trek 7.5 FX its surprising close and pretty much close to even, the frame on the 7.5 FX is outstanding for absorbing road harshness but the Sirrus feels much faster."
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Old 06-07-14, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
You should perhaps pop into this thread(https://www.bikeforums.net/hybrid-bic...l#post16829693) as the poster 2702 had this to say about his 7.5FX when asked to compare it to his new Sirrus bike :
"In terms of comfort compared to my old Trek 7.5 FX its surprising close and pretty much close to even, the frame on the 7.5 FX is outstanding for absorbing road harshness but the Sirrus feels much faster."
Kind of surprising to me (in a good way) that the carbon-fork-only Trek 7.5 would be "pretty much close to even" in terms of comfort as the full carbon Sirrus.
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Old 06-07-14, 11:06 AM
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Why not just drive to Silverdale, Seattle, or take the ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria? I bet Port Townsend has some shops too.

i really miss the Olympic discovery trail, I wish there was something as nice and as long where I am now
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Old 06-07-14, 11:33 AM
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You can't go wrong with the Trek 7.5. I love mine and ride it a lot. I have been on some longer rides including a Century. It is definitely slower than my full out racing bike, but much more comfortable. The carbon fiber fork and ISO-stuff really work!

Plus your local shop is got to take care of it for. Your said yourself they re the best. Decision made!
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Old 06-07-14, 11:50 AM
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The Treks are hard to compare to other bikes, because in my experience, each model feels different from the last. I wouldn't recommend the 7.3 or below to anyone over the offerings from another company... in which case I'd push for the Jamis. But when you go higher up the scale, the quality of the Trek bikes goes up. My only reason for pushing steel over aluminum is if you plan to ride the things 60 miles on a regular basis... even then, I think the 7.5. with the isozone cancels out any advantage over the steel frame. I so go with the 7.5 and support the nearest shop, you'll probably be there a lot anyways and it's best that they remember you as that pain in the butt that they had to special order a 7.5 for.
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Old 06-07-14, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Sullalto View Post
Why not just drive to Silverdale, Seattle, or take the ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria? I bet Port Townsend has some shops too.

i really miss the Olympic discovery trail, I wish there was something as nice and as long where I am now
Shops are running low on inventory especially for the higher end stuff. Like the 7.7 FX only size 54 to be brought, all other sizes sold out.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Sullalo View Post
Why not just drive to Silverdale, Seattle, or take the ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria? I bet Port Townsend has some shops too.

i really miss the Olympic discovery trail, I wish there was something as nice and as long where I am now
Sullalto.....I live 10 miles east of Sequim, WA just off the Discovery Trail. My intended new bike will be used to ride that trail when I venture into Sequim. It is a great trail that is not used much east of Sequim and parts of the trail go along the water.

The Trek dealer I am using is in Port Townsend and it appears to be a fine shop but small. With the exception of the unhelpful guy I spoke to on the phone , the rest if the staff seems quite professional and helpful.

I may need to travel to another Trek dealer to see if I can locate a 7.5. The Port Townsend shop does have a 7.4 in my size that I will try next week. And I still have interest in the Giant Escape 0 if I can find one to ride. Just reading about the Escape in the brochure from Giant and here at Bike Forum, it appears to be a bike I should strongly consider along with the Trek.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:43 PM
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Other things being equal, I would take a close look at Giant and Jamis. That said, warranty support is I mportant.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:43 PM
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I live within a few hours from Sequim and have my FX 7.5 for sale. Its a 14 year one 17.5 frame.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:54 PM
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My original reason for selecting the FX 7.4 over the FX 7.5 was:

1. I preferred triple crank to the compact double.......I'm old and all my riding is up or down.

2. I preferred the 32 spoke wheels to the 24 hole wheels......I'm 6' 2", 230 lbs and will carry some weight on a rear rack once in a while.

3. I like the 700 x 32c tires over the 700 x 28c tires......OK, this is no big deal.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by 2702 View Post
I live within a few hours from Sequim and have my FX 7.5 for sale. Its a 14 year one 17.5 frame.
Darn....too small for me.
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Old 06-07-14, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Daddy Wags View Post
My original reason for selecting the FX 7.4 over the FX 7.5 was:

1. I preferred triple crank to the compact double.......I'm old and all my riding is up or down.

2. I preferred the 32 spoke wheels to the 24 hole wheels......I'm 6' 2", 230 lbs and will carry some weight on a rear rack once in a while.

3. I like the 700 x 32c tires over the 700 x 28c tires......OK, this is no big deal.
Really frustrating. In that case, try the 7.4 and see how it works for you.
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Old 06-07-14, 04:18 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
Other things being equal, I would take a close look at Giant and Jamis. That said, warranty support is I mportant.
Yes, that Giant Escape 0 is an intriguing bike to me.....it compares favorably with the Trek FX 7.4.

Then again, to move up to the Giant Escape RX (like the Trek 7.5) ....I'm dealing with the double crank and 24 hole wheels.

Incidently, I see you have a Salsa Casseroll. Some years back when I was shopping for a dropped bar steel bike, the Cassie was my favorite ride. Loved that bike. Some health issues prevented my from getting one.
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Old 06-07-14, 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
Other things being equal, I would take a close look at Giant and Jamis. That said, warranty support is I mportant.
Yes, that Giant Escape 0 is an intriguing bike to me.....it compares favorably with the Trek FX 7.4.

Then again, to move up to the Giant Escape RX (like the Trek 7.5) ....I'm dealing with the double crank and 24 hole wheels.

Incidently, I see you have a Salsa Casseroll. Some years back when I was shopping for a dropped bar steel bike, the Cassie was my favorite ride. Loved that bike. Some health issues prevented my from getting one.
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Old 06-07-14, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Daddy Wags View Post
My original reason for selecting the FX 7.4 over the FX 7.5 was:

1. I preferred triple crank to the compact double.......I'm old and all my riding is up or down.

2. I preferred the 32 spoke wheels to the 24 hole wheels......I'm 6' 2", 230 lbs and will carry some weight on a rear rack once in a while.

3. I like the 700 x 32c tires over the 700 x 28c tires......OK, this is no big deal.
All good reasons, I didn't realize those changes were made in the 7.5.

Too bad bike companies don't understand that this isn't what people actually want, it's what they think we want. If I wanted a 24 hole wheel, I'm certainly not going to buy a cheap bontrager one.
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Old 06-07-14, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by headloss View Post
All good reasons, I didn't realize those changes were made in the 7.5.

Too bad bike companies don't understand that this isn't what people actually want, it's what they think we want. If I wanted a 24 hole wheel, I'm certainly not going to buy a cheap bontrager one.
I was surprised when I started researching quality hybrid bikes that the better the bike quality the further they got from my intended use. Of course, if I was a young buck again, I might be more interested in the upgraded bikes as presented. But, I can't help feel there are others, like me, who desire top of line hybrids with triples, sturdy wheels, and less severe bars.
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Old 06-07-14, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Daddy Wags View Post
Yes, that Giant Escape 0 is an intriguing bike to me.....it compares favorably with the Trek FX 7.4.

Then again, to move up to the Giant Escape RX (like the Trek 7.5) ....I'm dealing with the double crank and 24 hole wheels.

Incidently, I see you have a Salsa Casseroll. Some years back when I was shopping for a dropped bar steel bike, the Cassie was my favorite ride. Loved that bike. Some health issues prevented my from getting one.
The Casserolll can be set up with flat bars. More expensive option than an off the shelf, but if you bought a Casseroll frame (a challenge, since it is discontinued), you could build it up exactly as you want, rather than as some marketing guru at Trek decided. Quality does not necessarily mean racy.

Last edited by MRT2; 06-07-14 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 06-07-14, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Daddy Wags View Post
I was surprised when I started researching quality hybrid bikes that the better the bike quality the further they got from my intended use. Of course, if I was a young buck again, I might be more interested in the upgraded bikes as presented. But, I can't help feel there are others, like me, who desire top of line hybrids with triples, sturdy wheels, and less severe bars.
It's all about marketing. 7.1, 7.2, 7.3... trying to appeal to college kids on a budget and first time casual riders. 7.5+, they are going for the first time triathlon, gym-rat, midlife crisis types that haven't yet warmed up to drop bars. It's a shame that they don't market towards average people.

I think that's changing a bit, at least... you see more bikes in general that have longer chain stays and room for wider tires. The "endurance geometry" has caught on with a road bike segment with relaxed angles and higher handlebar placement. Still, it always seems to be about shedding a few grams and "going fast."

Personally, I love riding a steel bike with 36 spoke touring tires and a triple crank... the bikes isn't what keeps me from riding faster. If it holds me back at all, it's getting from 0-20mph that I'm slow.

There's plenty to be said for building up your own bike, but then it gets unnecessarily expensive. Still, it wouldn't hurt to ask the shop what it would cost to get the 7.5 frame built up with the 7.4 components. They might be able to do a full part swap and find another buyer that wants the double with a different paint scheme.

Something like a Soma Double Cross would be a great hybrid build.
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Old 06-07-14, 08:17 PM
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Thanks to all you good folks for the feedback. It is time for me to quit talking and do some riding. I have several bikes to try next week and that should sort things out a bit. I'm going to force myself to ride a handful of bikes just for comparison's sake. I'll be sure to let you all know which bike I ended up with....but it may take a while.

I have read a lot of advice given prospective bike buyers on this web site, and the buyer doesn't come back on and tell everyone what bike he ended up buying. Kind of takes the fun out of it.
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Old 06-11-14, 06:48 AM
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I think you should ride all of them and see which you like best. I just bought an Escape 1 and I'm in the process of modding it. My partner has an FX 7.4 Disc. I did some test rides and for me, It was hard to tell any difference in the bikes. I suppose with more seat time and longer test rides, I'd be able to tell. And, perhaps if I were riding them all back to back in the same location I could tell. So, for me, it came down to....which color I liked best, LOL. I do think it is important for them to get the sizing right though. I'm only 5.6" on a good day and all the stars align, so pretty much any small frame will work. A difficult riding position can be handled by moving the seat and changing the stem. You can dial in the right position if you're willing to swap some parts out. I'll note that this process can be tedious for some because getting a stem with the right length, rise, and angle can be frustrating. Since I like to tinker, I don't mind it. But if you're not inclined to changed parts (and there is nothing wrong with that), then get the one that you feel most comfortable on.
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Old 06-11-14, 11:07 AM
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I went to the Giant store two days ago and road the Roam, Escape, and Anyroad bikes. About 15 minutes on each bike over smooth and rough pavement.

I enjoyed the Escape the most but had to ride a lesser model as they didn't have a carbon forked model.....the one I am interested in. I am off to try the Treks soon and make some comparisons.

It is not that easy a task to try out bikes and make comparisons. Many times it is hard to find specific models I am interested in. And if I do find the model I desire, they don't have my size. Also, the setups on the bikes may not be the best and areas to test the bikes may not be how you would normally ride the bike.

My point being is that a road test doesn't always yield a clear answer to which bike should I buy. That is why I find this Bike Forum of such value......it can point you in the right direction, clarify the small points, and give you feedback from those who have spent longer times on bikes I may be interested in.
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