Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
reohn2
Posts: 34659
Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby reohn2 » 12 Nov 2015, 11:06am

Freddie
Start a polluted language thread in The tea shop if it bothers you so much,or form your own language police.
This thread's about someone asking advise about a bike that suits their particular needs.

TBH I find some people's need for perfection where there is no need,to be unwelcome and intrusive.
-----------------------------------------------------------
I cycle therefore I am.

PH
Posts: 7114
Joined: 21 Jan 2007, 12:31am
Location: Derby
Contact:

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby PH » 12 Nov 2015, 11:09am

Those suggesting that weight isn't an important consideration, should remember that the OP is a slim 5'4" who wishes to ride sportives with this bike. I'd suggest that weight is quite high on the list for her, far higher than it would be for me (6"3" and 105kg) with no intention to ride anything with sport in the description.

reohn2
Posts: 34659
Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby reohn2 » 12 Nov 2015, 11:14am

PH wrote:Those suggesting that weight isn't an important consideration, should remember that the OP is a slim 5'4" who wishes to ride sportives with this bike. I'd suggest that weight is quite high on the list for her, far higher than it would be for me (6"3" and 105kg) with no intention to ride anything with sport in the description.


I agree,but if you need a do-it-all bike some compromises are involved,but you have a valid point.
-----------------------------------------------------------
I cycle therefore I am.

User avatar
NUKe
Posts: 3617
Joined: 23 Apr 2007, 11:07pm
Location: Suffolk

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby NUKe » 12 Nov 2015, 11:24am

I have the CK7, but its the Campag veloce. It is a fantastic bike and ticks most if not all of your boxes, I use mine to commute all year round, Sunday Rides the occasional Audax. I have done 38000 miles on it in the last 5 years.

Minor criticism would be the standard wheels have too few spokes for heavy loading, so wouldn't be ideal as a heavy weight tourer, however as a light weight like yourself they should be fine . They are ok And I used the rear until it wore out, The front is still new and hung in the garage as I added a dynohub from day 1. Other things I have change are the saddle for a brooks and Bars and stem to a compact set and a shorter stem. but these are personal choices.

comes with mudguard and has rack mounting points rear only
Last edited by NUKe on 12 Nov 2015, 2:43pm, edited 1 time in total.
NUKe
_____________________________________

User avatar
horizon
Posts: 9210
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Cornwall

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby horizon » 12 Nov 2015, 11:28am

PH wrote:Those suggesting that weight isn't an important consideration, should remember that the OP is a slim 5'4" who wishes to ride sportives with this bike. I'd suggest that weight is quite high on the list for her, far higher than it would be for me (6"3" and 105kg) with no intention to ride anything with sport in the description.


If the bike works well for the OP in its other applications then it should be the right bike for her. My concern is that it is the sportive end of things that is skewing everything else. The race to the bottom on weight for competitive cycling means that the right bike for a sportive becomes useless for anything else. I certainly raised an eyebrow at some of the suggestions but I don't know enough - I keep well away from sportive-type events. There seem to be lots of rough surface/fast bikes coming onto the market (gravel grinders/cyclocross/commuters) but I don't know if people use these for sportives (I wouldn't have thought so except under the general heading of "people use all sorts of bikes for sportives" Hmm).

I would love to know what the OP finally chooses. What surprises me is that the OP did think that a do-it-all bike exists (think cargo bike on a time trial). You could say that a do-it-all bike does exist - a general, reasonably light bike that will carry luggage - but it isn't a bike that will actually do everything. My guess is that OP will take a long hard look at what she really wants to do most and buys a bike that reflects that. My money is on the road bike end of things.
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right leg. (G. M. Trevelyan)
PS I always wondered why the YHA HQ was called Trevelyan House. :)

Freddie
Posts: 2237
Joined: 12 Jan 2008, 12:01pm

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby Freddie » 12 Nov 2015, 11:29am

Reohn, I am no puritan, but 'go to' is the straw that broke the camel's back. I hear it more and more in the UK, see it in more and more newspapers. It means to go somewhere, not a preferred item. The rest I'm not too fussed about, but this I take a minor stand on. I won't mention it again, I'm just surprised so few people care about language these days. It is nothing personal, but a line should be drawn somewhere and for me 'go to' is it.

Sorry for being such a pedant, but maybe this is what the world today needs more of. I'm sure there are others that feel similarly, they are likely wise enough to keep their mouth shut about it though.

Back on topic...
horizon wrote:The Spa tourer is a cheap hybrid. It's £950 worth of everyday bike that after three years of commuting, touring and going to the shops has paid itself off and more. It could be stolen or lost once every five years and you would still be well ahead.
Still, I don't think many people would be happy to have £1000 worth of bike stolen every five years. It is a psychological blow, more so than a monetary one.

If you are leaving a bike outside for an extended period somewhere that you think it might get stolen, make sure it is as cheap as possible to do the job required of it and, even better, as unattractive as possible to potential thieves (no disk brakes, STI, fancy paintwork).

User avatar
horizon
Posts: 9210
Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 11:24am
Location: Cornwall

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby horizon » 12 Nov 2015, 11:40am

Freddie wrote:I don't think many people would be happy to have £1000 worth of bike stolen every five years. It is a psychological blow, more so than a monetary one.



It's not worth £1000 after five years but the older the bike is (and less valuable) the more attached you get to it ... :D

Back to the OP, I think I'm being too pessimistic about the bike choice. You can either approach it from the heavy end of things and go lighter (audax) or from the road bike end and stick on some mudguards. My guess is that the CK7 is ticking more boxes than the OP is letting on. :D
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right leg. (G. M. Trevelyan)
PS I always wondered why the YHA HQ was called Trevelyan House. :)

User avatar
simonineaston
Posts: 2303
Joined: 9 May 2007, 1:06pm
Location: Bristol - work in... Yate!

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby simonineaston » 12 Nov 2015, 11:55am

Stop Looking - everyone needs loads of different bikes...
for me it's:
* folder
* tourer
* commuter/shopper
* vanity-project
+ all-the-others-in-the-garden... so that's at least 4! :lol:
ttfn, Simon in Easton
(currently enjoying a Moulton TSR & a nano Brompton...)

keyboardmonkey
Posts: 568
Joined: 1 Dec 2009, 5:05pm
Location: Yorkshire

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby keyboardmonkey » 12 Nov 2015, 12:29pm

I am reminded that a while ago I read a thread about spoke count. As I recall a fairly light rider wanted a wheelset that some felt was unnecessarily strong for him and his type of cycling. The rider simply wanted peace of mind and was prepared to put up with heavier than necessary wheels to give that peace of mind. It seemed to annoy some people that the OP didn't want what others suggested.

Anyway, perhaps the OP will buy a bike with disc brakes that she doesn't care for, as advised.

Perhaps she will buy a heavier bike than her current one for her declared desire to zip along on Audax or sportive rides, as advised.

Perhaps she will persevere with a bike that is evidently too big for her, as advised.

The OP has also been advised to buy bikes significantly above her stated budget.

The OP has repeated that she doesn't have the room for more than one bike, and she has been advised to keep her current bike and buy another one as well.

Oh, and the OP should spend her hard-earned money on something so appalling to look at that no self-respecting thief would be tempted to steal it.

So, in addition to my own contribution about one of the bikes actually mentioned in her first post here is my own left field suggestion based on these things that we know:

a) stated budget of up to £1000
b) lingering uncertainty about disc brakes
c) the OP's size
d) requirement for a sprightly bike for Audax/sportive events
e) mudguard and rack mounts for (light???) touring

Going back to that T2 mentioned in the first post here are the thoughts I had a day or so ago:

1) Strip the current bike (I am assuming the current components are also in that decrepit state)
2) Buy a 48cm T2 frame £200-ish
3) Buy the following based on my 'Audax' bike build:

Chainset: Shimano 105 (5703) 170mm 50/39/30 - £87.99
External bottom bracket cartridge: Shimano 6800 - £11.99
STIs: Shimano 105 (5703) - £119.49
Front Mech: Shimano 105 (5703) - £21.99
Rear Mech: Shimano XT M772 - £32.99
Cassette: Shimano XT M771: 11/13/15/17/19/21/23/26/30/34 - £34.99
Chain: Shimano Ultegra 6600 £18.49
Brakes: Shimano BR650 £71.98
Oh, and a Jagwire inline adjuster.

(Let us leave aside for this thread discussions on external bottom bracket bearings. The above components are just a starting point. They can, of course, be replaced by others, but they are mostly designed to go together. Well, sort of...)

So, frame and bits around £600. Hmmm...

4) Reuse the 'finishing kit' etc. from the old bike if possible - handlebars, stem, seat post, saddle, wheelset, tyres.

5) If the OP or someone she trusts can't do the work for this then budget - what - £100 for someone else to strip and reassemble?

So around £700 for a bike that meets the requirements of a) to e) leaving money left over for some jazzy wheels and tyres for those sportive events.

Of course, the OP mentions the Cycle to Work scheme. Perhaps she doesn't presently have the cash to lay out £700+ all in one go.

So now I'm thinking that the easiest option is to buy, say, the stock T2 bike from a LBS under a Cycle to Work scheme and upgrade as and when funds allow (or have the LBS do some of the upgrades at point of sale up to the £1000 value?). I write 'upgrade' as although I would do a lightly laden tour on my T2 I wouldn't do any sort of touring without a triple chainset and at least a 32T sprocket at the back.

On the Tifosi, the £934.99 Veloce version ("Great-looking steed that will put the zip into your winter rides") has been reviewed alongside five 'winter training bikes' in the current - December 2015 - edition of Cycling Active and seems to have provision for mudguards and carrying rear panniers. It was the only bike in the group test to be awarded 10/10 and its nearest, more expensive, rivals were given only 8/10. Maybe worth a flick through in WH Smith.

With apologies for any Americanisms that may have crept in.

Have a nice day :smile:

User avatar
honesty
Posts: 2510
Joined: 16 Mar 2012, 3:33pm
Location: Somerset
Contact:

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby honesty » 12 Nov 2015, 2:05pm

I think what may be skewing the recommendations is the possibility of doing heavy loaded touring, it definitely skewed mine. If all that is going to be done is lightweight B&B style touring then an audax bike would be good as well. I rather like my Thorn audax, and the Spa audax is great as well. I have a touring triple on mine, which allows me to still have the higher gears when I'm unloaded, and a granny gear for when I'm carrying stuff.

Saying that though the Specialized Diverge (or the Dolce Evo) is a great bike and I really like the look of the carbon versions but I personally would say they are over geared for touring.

I guess it comes down to how often you are going to be using the bike and how often you will be touring.

swscotland bentrider
Posts: 190
Joined: 3 Aug 2008, 4:38pm

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby swscotland bentrider » 12 Nov 2015, 4:23pm

For the past six years all but one of my bikes have had discs. They have been flown, trained, ferried and packed in various cars. Not once have I had an issue with the discs. Its one of those issues that people imagine are common but in practice rarely happens. However during that time I have seen people retrieving their bikes, after flying, with wheels that are no longer true to the extent braking is difficult or impossible. Its not that one type is any more susceptible than the other. Damage happens occasionally and repair is always possible. :)

Bmblbzzz
Posts: 2608
Joined: 18 May 2012, 7:56pm
Location: From here to there.

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby Bmblbzzz » 12 Nov 2015, 5:13pm

Firstly, I no longer think that having one do-it-all bike is really a good idea for anyone who is keen on cycling, rather than simply using a bike as a means of transport to work, shops, etc. Not only because there are times when you want a faster bike and occasions when you prefer something with other capabilities, but also because if you have only one and it's out of service for a day or two – as it inevitably will be at some point – then you're stuffed, particularly if you rely on it to get to work.

That said, maybe have a look at the Genesis Croix de Fer, which looks as if it can most things apart from really rough off-roading and road racing (ok, and track racing!) and starts at an RRP of £850 with a cromo frame, and seems to draw only good comments from anyone who owns one; or the Surly Cross Check, which is very similar but has rim brakes rather than discs and inspires similar loyalty among its owners.

pwa
Posts: 9584
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby pwa » 12 Nov 2015, 5:25pm

Spa Audax, 50cm, with 105 Triple. Should cope with everything from touring (and gears to suit) to sportives. Compact chainsets with 34 teeth chainrings are not low enough for touring in hilly country. So bikes like the Croix de Fer would not be ideal.

keyboardmonkey
Posts: 568
Joined: 1 Dec 2009, 5:05pm
Location: Yorkshire

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby keyboardmonkey » 12 Nov 2015, 6:02pm

pwa wrote:Spa Audax, 50cm, with 105 Triple. Should cope with everything from touring (and gears to suit) to sportives. Compact chainsets with 34 teeth chainrings are not low enough for touring in hilly country. So bikes like the Croix de Fer would not be ideal.


(I previously flirted with the idea of the 52cm Titanium Spa Audax with 105 Triple as a n+1 for me before reality brought me back to earth. Perhaps I could save up for a frame-only option then strip all the upgrade kit off my T2, put it on the Ti Audax, and throw the old kit back on the T2 and push it further down the pecking order...)

Not sure - if it really matters - whether the 50cm has 26" wheels and I'm not sure either about the Tektro brakes, but I IMHO I would worry more about a do-it-all-bike being steel rather than aluminium. Hang on, I base it on the deterioration of the paintwork and rusting on my 531ST-framed bike. What with the daily hammer of the commute and being bashed about on ferries etc. I would worry about the long-term prospects of this one bike for the OP. But perhaps she would take better care of a steel bike than I did of mine :(

Anyway, I agree with pwa that the Spa Audax, with 105 Triple would tick a lot of the OP's boxes - remembering that 105 doesn't have the 'washing lines' of much of the cheaper Shimano group sets so wouldn't interfere with the bar bag the OP will have to get for those Audax rides :D

Oh, but do the owners of Spa Cycles play the Cycle to Work game?

Vorpal
Moderator
Posts: 16816
Joined: 19 Jan 2009, 3:34pm
Location: Not there ;)

Re: Buying advice - the elusive 'do-it-all' bike

Postby Vorpal » 12 Nov 2015, 8:26pm

The main problem, to my mind, of an Audax bike will be that it won't take winter tyres or wide touring tyres. If the OP doesn't want either of those, it's not a problem.

As for weight and sportives.... well, sportives vary hugely from leisure rides that people take on town bikes and hauling kids, but are called sportives to attract the people (fundraisers) who like to go around a do such things, to things that are races in all but name. Unles the OP wants to ride them competitively, weight won't make much difference.

IMO, having a bike the right size will make more difference than a few pounds.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom