Too many choices - which new bike ?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Vedz1B
Posts: 9
Joined: 10 Sep 2019, 6:43pm

Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Vedz1B » 10 Sep 2019, 7:17pm

Hi everyone (I'm new here, will you show me around?)
I'm currently looking at getting a new bike and god there are so many choices :shock:
I'm 43 and my back is giving me jip so that's more or less ruled out a low handlebar/racing position.
I want something I can just jump on and go the shops but that I can also use to roam around a bit (50/60 miles max).
Do I need disc brakes, hydraulics, loads of gears, etc...?
I don't want something too simple because I also want to have some fun riding it. Not too expensive because I'll be gutted if I get it nicked or scratch it. I also want a nice upright position.
I've looked a few models that I like
Thoughts :
TREK FX (with or without disc brakes) > Seems like a good fit for my needs, although a bit chunky
GIANT ESCAPE > A bit chunky aswell and a bit expensive for what it is
ORBEA CARPE > Also seems good but only has 7 gears which might be a pain if I'm doing a bit of a longer ride
GENESIS CROIX DE FER (Flat Handlebars) > Super cool, nice and slim but possible overkill and expensive. Definitely something I wouldn't be happy leaving locked up outside for any length of time.
I'd love a bit of input and your thoughts to help me make my mind up
Thanks a million
Dave

pwa
Posts: 10045
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby pwa » 10 Sep 2019, 7:41pm

Just to start you off, a really sensible choice might be this.

https://www.spacycles.co.uk/m1b0s21p396 ... ar-9-Speed

Great general purpose spec. Not disc brakes, but do you know how to maintain disc brakes?

On similar lines there is this,

https://www.oxfordbikeworks.co.uk/model-1e

Vedz1B
Posts: 9
Joined: 10 Sep 2019, 6:43pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Vedz1B » 10 Sep 2019, 8:16pm

Thanks. Are those not more like Touring bikes?

gbnz
Posts: 1551
Joined: 13 Sep 2008, 10:38am

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby gbnz » 10 Sep 2019, 8:46pm

Vedz1B wrote:
TREK FX (with or without disc brakes) > Seems like a good fit for my needs, although a bit chunky
GIANT ESCAPE > A bit chunky aswell and a bit expensive for what it is

Dave


Something like the bikes you've outlined above would be seem suitable, that said if they seem a bit chunky have a look at the same brands "flat bar road bikes" (NB. Essentially a road "racing" bike with flat handlebars I.e. Giant Rapid)

I found a flat bar road bike superb for commuting, general rides and the odd short tour I.e. a couple of hundred miles over to the Lakes / round the Dales et al. Light, fast, perfectly possible to fit most with pannier racks, mud guards, easier gears if desired or leave as a lightweight machine

slowster
Posts: 871
Joined: 7 Jul 2017, 10:37am

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby slowster » 10 Sep 2019, 9:07pm

Vedz1B wrote:Are those not more like Touring bikes?

Put it this way, are the bikes you've mentioned not more like Touring bikes, just with higher gears, without mudguards and without a rack? And if you are going for 50 or 60 mile pleasure rides, you might appreciate having lower gears when you come to a very steep or long hill, or when you are absolutely shattered, and you will appreciate mudguards if it starts to rain, and if the weather does change while you are out a bag on a rack allows you to take waterproofs with you and add or remove layers when you want.

Or you could just buy a hybrid, and pay extra for mudguards and a rack, and after few months post again on this forum asking how to fit lower gears.

pwa
Posts: 10045
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby pwa » 10 Sep 2019, 9:24pm

Vedz1B wrote:Thanks. Are those not more like Touring bikes?

They are touring bikes, which sounds roughly what you need. Do you want nice low gears that will get you up a fairly steep hill near the end of a 30 mile ride? Those bikes will do that. Most won't, but those will. It isn't the number of gears a bike has that will allow you to keep pedalling when going up a steep hill, it is the size of the smallest front cog compared to the size of the largest rear cog. Few bikes give you a really low gear, but these do.

The Trek FX on your list seems to have a good low gear. The Giant Escape doesn't have quite as low a bottom gear. That difference could matter to you on a hilly ride. It is something to watch out for.The Orbea doesn't have a decent low gear and from memory the Croix de Fer doesn't do very low gears.

But whatever you go for, make sure you try before you buy to ensure a good fit.

Jamesh
Posts: 571
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Jamesh » 10 Sep 2019, 9:46pm

Carrera and Boardman are good value bikes.

Vitus from wiggle and pinnacle from Evans are good value.

Planet X and Ribble may do hybrids too.

Big name brands are good but at a price premium.

Cheers James

Vedz1B
Posts: 9
Joined: 10 Sep 2019, 6:43pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Vedz1B » 10 Sep 2019, 10:40pm

slowster wrote:
Vedz1B wrote:Are those not more like Touring bikes?

Or you could just buy a hybrid, and pay extra for mudguards and a rack, and after few months post again on this forum asking how to fit lower gears.

I might just do that but i don’t think i’ll be asking you for any advice.

Brucey
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Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Brucey » 10 Sep 2019, 11:40pm

Vedz1B wrote:…..I'm 43 and my back is giving me jip so that's more or less ruled out a low handlebar/racing position. ...


by which you mean "I've decided to buy something with flat handlebars"...?


FWIW there are plenty of bikes that can be/are set up with dropped handlebars such that the tops/hoods are as high as you might find with flat bars. The idea of dropped bars is not that you automatically have to contort yourself into an uncomfortable position (although there are plenty of faux-racers in which you do) it is more that you have more choices about the riding position. That usually equals more comfort, not less; my idea of bike riding hell is to be stuck in one position, and many flat bar setups do exactly that.

If your back hurts when you cycle it is worth asking yourself a few questions eg

- is your core strength adequate? If not maybe some other exercises might be worthwhile
- is your riding position good? If in doubt get someone else to review it.
- are you using the gears correctly? It isn't at all unusual for less well practiced riders to want to 'mash' the pedals in a very high gear. This is rarely the best way, and very commonly causes all kinds of problems, back pain being one of them.
- are your legs the same length as one another? If not you may not notice when walking/sitting normally, but cycling (without appropriate adaptations) may force the spine into a different (side to side) curvature and this most often results in terrible back pain.

My advice to folk that are thinking of buying a new bike (because they are hoping that the new one will be more comfortable) is usually that they need to understand what riding position they really need. Within limits you can experiment with such variations in position without spending a fortune, using almost any bike. Having got comfy, you can buy a new bike, safe in the knowledge that you can easily set the bike up the way you need it to be. Buying bikes on a whim, looks alone and/ or on the basis of a short test ride is almost like playing Russian roulette by comparison.

FWIW it is comparatively easy to make the gearing on a bike higher, but making it lower is rather difficult. Requests for the former are mainly the province of folk riding small-wheeled bikes (which have naturally lower gears because of the small wheels, all things being equal) and people that have not actually ridden very far yet; request for lower gears are by comparison much more common, and it is a less easy problem to address. Given that most bikes have at least twice as many gears as are actually needed for most leisure riding, there is little downside to buying a bike with gears that at first seem unnecessarily low at the bottom end.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

pwa
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Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby pwa » 11 Sep 2019, 6:50am

Just to clarify, a flat bar tourer and a hybrid with lower gears can turn out to be more or less the same thing with a different label. So don't worry about the name.

djnotts
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Location: Nottingham

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby djnotts » 11 Sep 2019, 8:25am

FWIW, I have had my Trek FX longer than I have ever kept any bike - maybe a dozen others have come and gone in those 5 years! And it has been one of Trek's best and longest lived models! Mine has been much modified over time but the basics remain a functional and easy riding bike. Flat bars and generous clearances allow easy adaptation to mtb gearing if necessary.

Vedz1B
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Joined: 10 Sep 2019, 6:43pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Vedz1B » 11 Sep 2019, 9:08am

djnotts wrote:FWIW, I have had my Trek FX longer than I have ever kept any bike - maybe a dozen others have come and gone in those 5 years! And it has been one of Trek's best and longest lived models! Mine has been much modified over time but the basics remain a functional and easy riding bike. Flat bars and generous clearances allow easy adaptation to mtb gearing if necessary.

I think that the TREK is the sensible choice. The Croix de Fer is amazing but expensive and slow from what i hear.
Which TREK would you recommend between the FX 1 Disc or FX 2 Disc? One difference that struck me between the two is the handlebar shape and length +4cm on the FX2. Am I right in think that the shorter the handlebar, the more upright the position?

https://www.trekbikes.com/gb/en_GB/bikes/hybrid-bikes/fitness-bikes/fx/fx-2-disc/p/27991/?colorCode=bluedark

https://www.trekbikes.com/gb/en_GB/bikes/hybrid-bikes/fitness-bikes/fx/fx-1-disc/p/27987/?colorCode=greydark

Vorpal
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Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby Vorpal » 11 Sep 2019, 10:05am

I strongly recommend going and riding them. Not just around the car park, but far enough to decide if you will be comfortable.

As for touring bikes, they may be your ideal choice. They are designed for a more upright position, and can easily carry your shopping, and still be comfortable for a 60 mile ride. My most comfortable bike is a touring bike.

A second hand bike will get you better value for money than a new one. If you donæt feel comfortable evaluating a second hand bike for yourself, try one of the bike recycling centres for a refurbished second hand bike? https://www.cyclinguk.org/recycling-centres
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

simonhill
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Location: Essex

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby simonhill » 11 Sep 2019, 10:46am

For me the first question should have been to ask the OP for a bit more information.

What bike(s) has he had or have; experience of his riding so far; experience of working on bikes; where he wants to ride (Lake District or Norfolk); max budget; etc.

Nonetheless, water under the bridge now.

That Spa tourer looks good and I ride a similar bike as my do everything bike, but at nearly a grand is that too much for the OP. I see the most expensive Trek FX is under £500 - a big difference.

reohn2
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Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Too many choices - which new bike ?

Postby reohn2 » 11 Sep 2019, 11:03am

Vedz1B wrote:........ The Croix de Fer is amazing but expensive and slow from what i hear. .......

The only thing that makes a bike fast or slow is the rider.
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I cycle therefore I am.