/ Cyclocross or road bike?
Hi Nick, I too live in Edinburgh and bought a Specialized Tricross on the Cycle to work scheme a few years ago. I use it to commute sometimes and the odd long run (have since bought a pure roadie for etape's e.t.c)I use(d) it to commute out to Livingston. the roads are awful and bigger tyres are great. I run Schwalbe marathon Plus's - 32's. They're bulletproof as a puncture on the A71 would be a right pain in the butt. The biggest thing I've noticed is that he CX chainsets seem to be less than roadie one's but the Tricross has a 50/39/30 so much better for road work than something nearer a mountain bike setup. Of the 2 bikes, the roadie actually looks a better spec with full Tiagra. You could always chuck on Conti GP4 Season tyres (25's) which seem to help greatly with the roads as they are.
At that price not much of an option - look for a carbon fork if you can as that'll take the worst of the road buzz away. You can start getting a carbon frame at just under a grand, but the groupset (gears and brakes to the uninitiated) and wheels will be pretty bottom end. Tricross is a nice bike but heavy - also have a look at the Boardman CX - that has a more "road" gearing yet has disc brakes and plenty of room for knobbliness when you want it.
Used to go to the Alba campus, but now we're in an office near SJH.
Hi Nick. Aluminium is cheap, that is about its only advantage. Perfectly good material for a budget crosser/do-it-all bike.
I've got a alu Kinesis crosser and am looking to sell the frame and fork. You are welcome to try it out whether or not you're considering buying, it fits me at 6'1". PM if you want a shot of it, I'm in Morningside.
If you are buying new, I'd advise disc brakes.
Crosser every time. Not much slower on the road and much more versatile. Look at Boardman and Cotic.
I've ruled out the Crossrip and Tricross (both heavy). There's the aforementioned Boardman and the Whyte King's Cross. A mate got a Cube Cross Race but I don't think it has mudguard eyelets. The standout for me was the Cannondale Caadx Tiagra. Almost road bike light. £950 but it didn't take much for the Lbs to offer 10% and the 2012 model is still kicking about at nearer 800.
Sadly mine might be on hold since the missus just found out she's going to have to reapply for her job :-(
I find cantilever breaks to be fine .
Got Avid Shorty`s and they stop my bike dead every time.
My *very limited* experience is that 700x25c is too skinny for commuting on potholed roads. If you get something with frame clearance for 700x32c you'll still be able to fit skinnier tyres on the rims if you want to.
the disc brake thing did not occur to me at bike purchase time.
Intrigues me rather now.
I got a Scott Addict CX (2013) ,which ,at 3 grand,is Scott`s top CX bike.
Intrigued now ,how the Addict CX had not evolved into having disc brakes
People always say "think about the frame" which is fair enough, but no one wants to spend 8 or 9 hundred quid then immediately start swapping out components!
This is all you need in your life Nick.
Mike, why did you go for the Cotic over the Croix de Fer? I'm assuming the CDF was discounted due to weight? Are you getting the carbon forks?
Iím keen for a steel crosser for my commute to work (50/50 on/off road) and am undecided. I really like the Croix de Fer but am put off by the weight, which pushes me towards the >X<.
In reply to the thread in general:
Brakes - When buying a mountain bike all the advice I got was don't touch mechanical discs, they're sh**e. Now, looking at cyclocross bikes, the advice is to get some Avid BB7s. Have mechanical discs come on that much? If I wait a year will hydraulics be available?
+1 for the Kinesis 5T. I like the look of the Genesis cross bikes but haven't any experience of them.
What are sold as "cyclocross" are often closer to the all-round bike of yesterday than out and out cx racers. They are pretty good at everything and unless you need the specificity of say a racer or an out and out tourer they are as much as you are likely to need. (until the bug bites of course!)
Whatever happened to the Planet X Kaffenbach? Saw a beautiful one on the Etape Caledonia.
Changing the tyres completely transforms the bike and makes it so versatile. If you only need a one trick pony a road bike will likely out perform a cyclocross by a very small margin.
My wife's mtb has BB5s and they seem to need constant adjustment, as well as never having the same stopping power or control of hydraulics. The BB7s are allegedly superior but for a cross bike I'd rather have hydraulics. Unfortunately we could be waiting years for this to happen unless you're willing to pay through the nose. I am more than happy for someone to point out a sub £1000 crosss bike with hydraulics though...
> Whatever happened to the Planet X Kaffenbach? Saw a beautiful one on the Etape Caledonia.
they still make them
BB7's seem the way to go. As I say, with a set of Sora 3500 levers you get the extra brake lever pull required to run MTB calipers which are much more efficient than the road versions. Hydraulic shifters are on the verge of coming out but currently they are bulky and a bit rustic. I think the technology is going to need a few years. If you are keen to go hydraulic you can go hybrid and buy either the Parabox system which is quite expensive or the Hope v-twin system at 250ish notes. They basically allow you to trive the calibers from a master cylinder mounted under your stem and driven by a cable from your levers. If I find the BB7's crap, then that's the way I'll go eventually. But in the meantime I can run secondhand BB7 mtb's with my sora shifters for not a vast amount of money - you can pick up calipers on fleabay for 40-50quid...
> My wife's mtb has BB5s and they seem to need constant adjustment, as well as never having the same stopping power or control of hydraulics.
That's exactly what I've found too, plus mine squeak - I wondered if my wheel has been bumped out of true, and that accounts for it, or whether somehow I've got a warp in the rotor.
Having just one side adjustable seems lame, you must have to bend the rotor to brake, which seems destined to cause issues.
> That's exactly what I've found too, plus mine squeak
And that too...
I tried the Genesis CDF but for 90 quid cheaper the Arkose has Tiagra rather than Sora, carbon forks whereas Genesis is metal forks, 20 gears rather than the Genesis's 18, and the Genesis doesn't have enough clearance to be compatible for mudguards for when I'm an old git and mud bothers me. Even with a pedal upgrade (Genesis comes with SPD, Arkose does not), it still saved money for a higher spec bike.
I recommend it!
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