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Genesis Croix de Fer - Brilliant or bonkers?

Posted: 11 Nov 2008, 12:41pm
by woollee23
Hi all - your opinions please.

This seems to be one of those machines that falls into the ‘brilliant or bonkers’ category – the Genesis ‘Croix de Fer’. It’s so much of a hybrid that it doesn’t know what to be!

It could be a Tourer, but little if any room for mudguards, and the Carbon Fork reduces it’s load-lugging potential (i.e. no front panniers).

It could be Cyclocross bike, but the disc brakes would make it illegal to ride in ‘cross competitions.

It could be a full-on racer, but the frame is the ‘wrong’ material (Reynolds 520) and the wheels / tyres are too wide.

Nonetheless I think this is a beautiful looking machine and would love Santa to bring me one this year.


Posted: 11 Nov 2008, 12:45pm
by PW
If it had mudguards it would be brilliant as a commuter or tourer. With no clearance it's no good for either and it certainly wouldn't be competitive so what use is it?

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 8:59am
by pioneer
As CJ explained some weeks back, there are some in the cycle industry who are trying to convince us that cyclo-cross style bikes will be the next "big thing". The new,do everything bike. I suppose if you can make some compromises here and there,then yes, it could be an all rounder.

They've built the bikes,now all they've got to do is sell them to us.

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 9:17am
by Mick F ... 67c1b3dd24

I had to Google to see it in all it's technical glory.


It's neither fish nor fowl. Even if it had 'guards, I wouldn't want to tour with that saddle!

If I wanted to race/audax, the tyres are wrong - 35mm??!!! , also the frame.

I wouldn't recommend that bike for anyone, unless there was a huge discount coz they couldn't sell them. I'm of the era when you made your own bikes up from components rather than buy a complete bike - there's always something "wrong" with a bike from a shop. This is ALL wrong - or at least the combinations of the equipment are!

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 9:19am
by Graham O
When I saw this bike in C+ I thought it was my ideal, but if the mudguard clearance is limited, then it is a case of "nearly perfect, but no thanks". I'll stick with my home build Cotic Roadrat, when funds allow!

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 9:21am
by pigman
a "proper" cyclox bike is never going to be an all rounder, despite what they say. If it is, then its a compromise for the crossers, the road racers and the tourists. Thats because
1. A cross bike has racing geometry, certainly with the seat angle. I cant see any tourist wanting to sit on something with a 73-76 degree angle.
2. A cross bike has higher clearance and bottom bracket. A high centre of gravity's not what you really want when descending a mountain pass with rack and panniers front and aft.
3. Where are you going to hang those panniers. A proper crosser saves weight and aids cleaning by having no rack/mudguard braze-ons. Some dont even have bottle bosses.
4. Big clearances dont work for the road racer.

The current all round crossers on the market seem to be best suited as a road racer's winter bike.

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 9:32am
by pioneer
I agree with all of the above. But there will be some who get won over by the marketing hype.

Mick is right too. A heavily discounted one may be a bargain.Time will tell!

One of the saleman on the Genesis stand at Cycle' tried to tell me that thier Vapour model (another sort of cross style bike and a better general purpose bike than the Croix de Fer IMO), would in fact make a better tourer than thier own dedicated touring bikes. Absolute tosh.

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 11:37am
by Mick F
if the tyres were changed to 23mm, could you fit 'guards?

If so, and the saddle were changed, a reasonable commuting/everyday bike might emerge.

Posted: 12 Nov 2008, 12:47pm
by stewartpratt
I'm a believer in the cross-breeding of road/tourer/cross bikes. There's a Surly Cross Check in my garage and if I had to live with just one bike (one frameset, at least) for the rest of my life, that would almost certainly be it. It does everything more than adequately, except properly technical off-road of course.

Mind you, I'm never convinced by the combination of steel frame and carbon forks. Aesthetic reasons, mainly, but they just seem at odds with each other.

Thumbs up here, anyway. The more the merrier.

Posted: 13 Nov 2008, 9:39am
by ed_o_brain

Magnifying the picture, I can see mudguard eyes above the rear dropouts and behind the front dropouts.

Posted: 13 Nov 2008, 9:51am
by Si
It even appear to have crud catcher bolts!

Seems OK as a do it all to me, depending on price and weight. although I'd want to make sure that it would take racks without the disc calipers getting in the way.

My take on the do it all bike followed a slightly different approach. I used a Dawes Onedown frame (i.e. Sardar without the disc & low rider mounts) to create a 26" wheeled tourer/roughtstuff/expidition bike. It's bound to be heavier and slower than the cX approach but it can take monster fat knobblies for the of road bits and it can carry a lot more luggage, I'd also wager that it is a tad more comfortable. Not to mention cheaper.

However, if money were no object I would have gone for the Van Nic cX/tourer frame and a steel fork.

Posted: 13 Nov 2008, 10:05am
by reohn2
Thanks to Ed's link after having a gander it looks like a good winter bike to me,discs so no rim wear,steel frame :) ,well equiped,and it does appear to have m/guard clearances.
About the only thing i'm not too impressed with is the (so called power) fork,it looks pretty uncomfortable to me,I don't think thry sell that many at £999 either but at £799 maybe.

Oh and WHITE :shock: sorry :?

Edit:-I've just checked the specs and realised the fork is carbon not as it looked like in the pics and I thought steel,so I suppose it would be more coomfy,though I'm not convinced about discs on carbon forks(man tries not to become prejudiced but fear over rules)

Posted: 13 Nov 2008, 11:20am
by pioneer
The Kona Jake is another attempt at this sort of cross-over style and a lot cheaper too.

I've done the same as Si with an old steel ATB but if looking for a new (expensive!),do it all mount, would probably buy the bits and then build-up myself.

Re: Genesis Croix de Fer - Brilliant or bonkers?

Posted: 2 Mar 2009, 2:07pm
by james-o
I guess some here may be suprised if i said this has been our fastest-selling bike this year...

It's simply a steel 'cross bike that probably won't get raced (there are plenty of race bikes already out there) and the discs add to the useability in winter. I use mine for long road rides with bridleways and a bit of singletrack to keep the interest up on winter rides, and then add guards / 28c tyres for summer commutes.

It's one you either get, or not, and those that do seem to see something not many brands offer. We designed it 'cos it's the type of bike we ride ourselves )

Re: Genesis Croix de Fer - Brilliant or bonkers?

Posted: 2 Mar 2009, 2:13pm
by Si
It could be Cyclocross bike, but the disc brakes would make it illegal to ride in ‘cross competitions.

I could be wrong but I thought that it was only national level events that forbade discs - AFAIK local events are fine with them (ditto flat bars, or even using MTBs) ?