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Azor (HWC) Opa v. Pashley Roadster Sovereign

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Azor (HWC) Opa v. Pashley Roadster Sovereign

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Old 06-23-08, 10:59 AM
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Valentin
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Azor (HWC) Opa v. Pashley Roadster Sovereign

Hi!
I am interested in a utility bike that I can use for commuting everyday particularly to work, but also to most other places around town. I don't want to get something like a bakfietsen - just a tank like bike with low maintenance, high reliability, upright position. I have narrowed it down to:

Azor (HWC) Opa http://clevercycles.com/store/?c=web...or+Opa+8+speed
Pashley Roadster Sovereign http://www.pashley.co.uk/products/ro...sovereign.html

Price is not so much an issue as is what I get for the price.

If anyone has had either bike or has an opinion about which offers more bang for the buck please let me know! Any advice is welcome...

I live in a flat, rolling hill area - no major hills, etc.

Valentin
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Old 06-23-08, 11:37 AM
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Hi,

I've been riding an Azor Transport for a little while. It is basically an Opa with a re-inforced frame for heavier loads (two top tubes) and a brazed on mount for a front rack.

The bike is a blast. It is HEAVY (heavier than my xtracycle) but it rides like a dream. I sometime feel that once rolling, you can go forever. The high-tensil steel frame, the sprung brook saddle and the big tyres make for a really cushy ride. The upright riding postion is truly life changing. It took a little while to get used to it. No weight on my hands (which I love -- I am a massage therapist, my hands can use a rest), upright back, I feel relaxed and even more aware of the surrounding world than before.

The bike feels very solid. The racks are massive. So big that the hooks of my Arkel panniers do not properly fit arond the tubing. I've mounted a baker's basket in the front. Great for quick grocery runs. I am considering mounting a dutch style set of panniers (clevercycles has them) at the back for more cargo capacity. I love the Axa defender lock (with the additional Axa chain).

I live in Seattle and ride up and down hills every day (I am carfree). I was worried about the weight of the bike on hills but not anymore. There is nothing this bike will not go up (including Queen Anne streets), it just takes a (little) bit longer. And really, that is very much in line with why I wanted to be carfree in the first place -- to increase my quality of life, not its speed

The real test is going to be the winter for me. I am sold on the concept of long fenders, full chain case, jacket protector, generator hub, internal gear hub -- low low maintenance. I am looking froward to dry(er) rides and a bicycle that will probably outlast me!

I would highly recommend the Azor. I don't know how it compares to the Pashley but would love to hear back from you if you have a chance to ride both.

HTH.
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Old 06-24-08, 03:10 AM
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Here is a blog from Chicago where someone is riding the Oma/Azor.

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Old 06-24-08, 06:36 AM
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Thanks!

Thanks for the link to the blog. I'll check that blog out. Looks interesting. The concept of the slow bike movement intrigues me.
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Old 06-24-08, 07:25 AM
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How the two compare - from what I can gather...

PASHLEY
Size: 20.5, 22.5, 24.5
Color: Birmingham Black
Frame: Traditional lugged and brazed
Fork: Tubular crown hand brazed
Gears: Sturmey Archer 5 speed hub
Wheels: 28 inch black rims
Handlebar: Chrome plated raised bar
Brakes: Sturmey Archer hub brakes
Pedal: Alloy with non-slip
Saddle: Black Brooks B33
Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Plus
Features: Mudguards, frame fit lock, coat guard
Chaincase: Full
Front Light: Hub driven dynamo headlamp
Rear Light: LED
Stand: Fold down rear wheel stand
Carrier: Steel Rear
Paint: Black paint
Price: 1399.99 aprox.

AZOR
Size: 57 (22.4), 61 (24), 65 (25.6)
Color: Black
Frame: Lugged / Brazed
Gears: Shimano Nexus 8-Speed
Wheel: 700c alloy rims [28 inch]
Handlebar: Stainless steel
Brakes: Shimano drum brakes
Pedal: Rubber block
Saddle: Brooks B67/S
Tires: Schwalbe Marathon Plus
Features: Steering stabilizer springs, mudguards, coat guard
Chaincase: Full
Front Light: Metal Lamp heads, Busch/Miller Halogen optics, chromed brass bell,
Rear Light: LED
Stand: Two legged center
Carrier: Rack w/ bungee
Paint: Black gloss powdercoat
Price: 1699.99 aprox.
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Old 07-28-08, 08:11 AM
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The Pashley has more the more efficient gear hub and better brakes. Otherwise, the bikes are pretty similar.
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Old 09-05-08, 08:53 AM
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the azor may hold up better if exposed to bad weather, as the handlebars and hardware are mostly stainless stell, as opposed to chromed steel like the pashley. also, not sure if the pashley frame is powder coated, but the azor's powder coated paint is quite durable. however, i've noticed that on some of the azors in my area, the painted accessories such as the racks and chain guards are rusting. i think the accessories are just third-party add-ons that most of the dutch frame manufacturers use to spec their bikes with.
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Old 09-19-08, 09:34 AM
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Ah, I had the same question. It's down to the Azor Transport or the Pashley Sovereign Roadster. Both are beautiful bikes, though the Transport is significantly more expensive.

The Pashley is so elegant though.
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Old 09-22-08, 01:19 PM
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Thanks for the information. I have finally decided which bike I'm going to buy. Now the challenge is finding a place that sells it!
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Old 09-22-08, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by doggo View Post
Ah, I had the same question. It's down to the Azor Transport or the Pashley Sovereign Roadster. Both are beautiful bikes, though the Transport is significantly more expensive.

The Pashley is so elegant though.
If you were to get the Transport, where would you get it?
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Old 09-22-08, 02:18 PM
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Have you considered a Redline R530?

http://www.redlinebicycles.com/adultbikes/R530.html
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Old 09-22-08, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Editz View Post
Have you considered a Redline R530?

http://www.redlinebicycles.com/adultbikes/R530.html
I have one...but wouldn't put in the same class as the Azor or the Pashley.

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Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 09-22-08, 07:00 PM
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It appears to have the basic Walmart-mountain-bike frame.
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Old 09-22-08, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
It appears to have the basic Walmart-mountain-bike frame.
Which one? If you mean the Redline? The frame is of better quality than what I have seen in WM recently and the components are much better. IIRC WM has only sold one IGH bike and it was a poorly executed 3 speed. Also WM only sells one size of bike and the Redline (and many other LBS type bikes) are available in multiple sizes.

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"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
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Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 09-22-08, 07:37 PM
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Clever Cycles in Portland...

Clever Cycles in Portland or Dutch Bikes Seattle both ship the Azor line. Both have great websites with plenty of accessories. Salud!! -- Z.

Last edited by Zeppole; 09-22-08 at 07:39 PM. Reason: Brainfart.
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Old 09-22-08, 07:59 PM
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I was mainly referring to the very low frame on the Redline, which is common on mountain bikes, but requires excessive seat extension for normal riding. Being available in various sizes would help a lot.

One thing also, I don't think the Sovereign is especially intended as a utility bike, just a generic riding bike. Don't know if that makes any difference on the strength or the doohickeys attached to it.
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Old 09-22-08, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by K6-III View Post
The Pashley has more the more efficient gear hub and better brakes. Otherwise, the bikes are pretty similar.
Bias Alert: I work at Clever Cycles.

If you're looking for a little to zero maintenance bicycle that can get groceries, haul around whatever, and be submersible--then get the Azor. If you'll occasionally carry groceries and you're not looking for the complete upright geometry--Pashly.

As what K6 said, they are similar but the Azor is in a world of it's own. It's definitely sturdier--being able to carry huge loads on the back rack, or the aftermarket Pick-up rack. Both rock.

The Pashley's I've seen (we carry them now) are an enamel paint. It's a wet paint process, like spray paint--but better.

The Azor's use powdercoating which is blasted on and it clings with static electricity which is then baked on in an oven. Infinately more durable.

My (biased) $.02
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Old 09-23-08, 03:25 AM
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Originally Posted by StephenH View Post
I was mainly referring to the very low frame on the Redline, which is common on mountain bikes, but requires excessive seat extension for normal riding. Being available in various sizes would help a lot.

One thing also, I don't think the Sovereign is especially intended as a utility bike, just a generic riding bike. Don't know if that makes any difference on the strength or the doohickeys attached to it.
Welcome to the new world of compact frame sizing! Even the high end bike companies are doing it. They use a sloping top tube to allow more people to ride a similar sized frame. Instead of making 8 or more frame sizes they now make 4. AFAIK WM carries one size, depending on the bike it will vary from 19" to 21". I ride 25.5" so no matter what I get, it most likely will have some extra seat post sticking out. I have a couple of WM MTB's that I hauled out of the trash for recycling purposes The welds are pretty crappy compared to the Redline.

Aaron

Here is a picture of my Redline it is the XL frame size. FWIW my seat top to pedal extension measurement is over 37"
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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
_krazygluon
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Old 02-13-10, 07:30 PM
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Why is it so many try to advise those looking at Pashley and similar cycles to look at such dissimilar ones, as this "Redline" above?

If a bicycle had a "Red line", I'd be suspicious and looking for an exhaust pipe. FWIW, that bicycle speaks about as much class as a 1993 Mazda Protege.

So called "compact frame geometry", even though "everyone's doing it", is CLEARLY not what the OP is after.

And yet, you're not alone sir, in your quest to dissuade us nonsensical lovers of LARGE, STRONG frames. Why is this so?

How frustrating.
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Old 02-15-10, 08:49 AM
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And the choice was...

...the Pashley Roadster Sovereign. I had debated between the Azor and the Pashley but decided to go with the Pashley. Both bikes had pros and cons but ultimately size was the deciding factor as the Pashley fit me better. I very much enjoy this bike and think I made the right choice for my purposes. Thanks to everyone on this thread who contributed to the discourse. My original post was June of 2008. I bought the bike in Jan/Feb of 2009 and have been riding it since.
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Old 02-19-10, 03:51 PM
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Pics or it didn't happen.
Valentin, where are you located, and where did you make your purchase?
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