Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Agent009
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Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:21 am

Hey everyone

In the market for a cyclocross bike. Ideally under $1000 but would extend to $1500 if I need to.

I want something for fitness and to commute. 95% will be riding on roads/pavements but I would like something robust that can handle gravel/dirt (hence looking at cyclocross). I will NOT be racing. I want something fast yet robust...happy to sacrifice a little bit of speed for reliability if need be.

So many different models/brands and it's a bit overwhelming. Out of these two URL's, is there something that stands out:

https://www.bicyclesuperstore.com.au/bi ... ravel.html
https://www.reidcycles.com.au/bikes/all ... bikes.html

Also, what size tyres would you recommend?

Thanks everyone!

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Tue Jul 24, 2018 1:40 pm

Maybe a Marin Gestalt :
Image

Has Tiagra 2x10, room for 35mm rubber and TRP Spyre discs (mechanical).

Or a Polygon Bend :
Image

which ups the kit to Shimano 105 and hydraulic Shimano discs (better)

These two, and others are at : https://www.bicyclesonline.com.au/cyclo-cross-gravel-bikes/

Would consider an appropriate 32mm tyre to be a minimum, but more like 35mm Schwalbes as a good compromise between tarmac and light gravel etc usage.
Mmm, SunTour

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 3:42 pm

Thanks mate.

Would both of the above bikes be a big step up for the Reid Granite 2.0?

https://www.reidcycles.com.au/granite.html

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bychosis
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby bychosis » Tue Jul 24, 2018 3:50 pm

Would you be better off with a gravel grinder? I've heard that cyclocross bike tend to be aggressive in geometry and the handling may not suit general riding like commuting or longer rides.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Tue Jul 24, 2018 4:05 pm

Agent009 wrote:Thanks mate.

Would both of the above bikes be a big step up for the Reid Granite 2.0?


I think both would be an incremental step up in terms of frame quality, however Reid have made some nice strides in terms of overall quality. If the budget can stretch a bit further, there's also a Kona Jake the Snake. Good mix of components, Shimano hydraulic discs, well finished frames.

Image

Where are you located ? There may be run-out stuff floating around where you are..found a Kona Jake the Snake dropped to $1989 here :https://www.bikeexchange.com.au/a/cyclocross-bikes/kona/vic/fitzroy/jake-the-snake/103140560
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familyguy
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby familyguy » Tue Jul 24, 2018 4:27 pm

bychosis wrote:Would you be better off with a gravel grinder? I've heard that cyclocross bike tend to be aggressive in geometry and the handling may not suit general riding like commuting or longer rides.


A worthy question. I had an aluminium CX bike which I commuted on, went ok, but the high BB meant it was very tall on the road. It was only as aggressive as my roadie geo once on, though being taller because of the relative BB height meant I had to slide off the seat at every stop, I coudn't just toe-down and keep upright. I moved that frame on and waited a while, just using my roadies, until a Fuji Tread popped up. Much more comfortable, if a little slower, for commuting and longer rides.

As always, YMMV.

Jim

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:11 pm

10speedsemiracer wrote:
Agent009 wrote:Thanks mate.
Where are you located ? There may be run-out stuff floating around where you are..found a Kona Jake the Snake dropped to $1989 here :https://www.bikeexchange.com.au/a/cyclocross-bikes/kona/vic/fitzroy/jake-the-snake/103140560


Thanks but $1500 is already pushing what I want to spend. Really can't justify going to $2000+

I'll check out gravel grinders too....bit confusing as there seems to be a lot of crossovers between GG's and CX's.

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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 8:45 am

After spending last night doing A LOT of reading, I think I’ve changed my mind from a cyclocross bike to an Adventure bike.

At the end of the day, they have a lot of crossover and are quite similar anyway. It looks like CX is more targeted for racing and Adventure for “having fun”.

Given I’ll be a more casual rider, Adventure will probably suit me better. It also helps that a budget of $1500 can get me a whole lot more in Adventure (vs CX).

So I did more reading and I think I’ve narrowed it down to Giant Roam Disc 0 or 1 or Giant Toughroad.

My first question:

Giant Toughroad comes in a GX model that has dropbars. Do you think dropbars would suit me or should I just go flatbar in the non-GX model?

Has anyone compared Roam Disc with Toughroad – thoughts?

Thanks again.

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Defy The Odds
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Defy The Odds » Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:37 am

Agent009 wrote:After spending last night doing A LOT of reading, I think I’ve changed my mind from a cyclocross bike to an Adventure bike.

At the end of the day, they have a lot of crossover and are quite similar anyway. It looks like CX is more targeted for racing and Adventure for “having fun”.

Given I’ll be a more casual rider, Adventure will probably suit me better. It also helps that a budget of $1500 can get me a whole lot more in Adventure (vs CX).

So I did more reading and I think I’ve narrowed it down to Giant Roam Disc 0 or 1 or Giant Toughroad.

My first question:

Giant Toughroad comes in a GX model that has dropbars. Do you think dropbars would suit me or should I just go flatbar in the non-GX model?

Has anyone compared Roam Disc with Toughroad – thoughts?

Thanks again.


G'day mate,

Refer to my reply in my review of the Toughroad. It comes in the GX2 model which I believe is a 2x setup but otherwise all very similar to the top spec GX0.

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/toughroad-slr-gx-2

I think this kind of bike would suit you better. Its low to the ground compared to a CX bike, a little more relaxed geometry (although you can make it slightly more aggressive by slamming the stem as I have) and mounting optiona a plenty


Edit: drop bars offer far more choice in terms of hand placement. Refer to my reply for a comparison of the two.

Goodluck and enjoy :)

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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:38 am

Defy The Odds - thanks very much mate, glad I'm on the right track.

I just read you great review of the Toughroad GX0....was very insightful.

The GX0 is simply out of my price bracket, so for me, it comes down to:

Toughroad GX2 (with dropbars) vs Roam Disc 0 vs Roam Disc 1 vs Roam Disc 2

(the above are in order of most expensive to least expensive).

Is there a reason why I should go the Toughroad over the Roam series?

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bychosis
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby bychosis » Wed Jul 25, 2018 12:36 pm

Check the geometry difference between the two. It may be that the roam is designed to be more relaxed than the tough road. (I haven’t checked). Does the roam come with suspension? It isn’t necessary.

I rode a roam a couple of times before replacing the frame. It seemed quite uoright and relaxed. I bought the roam for parts as it had a damaged frame.
bychosis (bahy-koh-sis): A mental disorder of delusions indicating impaired contact with a reality of no bicycles.

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MichaelB
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby MichaelB » Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:11 pm

Hiya,

I'm currently riding a Reid Granite 3.0 as part of a review for BNA.

Done about 500km of road riding so far, and stuck on the CX tyres that came with it (Conti Cyclocross Race 35c) and about to start doing some off roading on the way home tonight, with a more concerted effort over the weekend.

The Granite 3 at $1600 is pretty good, and the only thing that I think is missing are mounting points for proper fenders (more about commuting than anything else), but other than that, it's been pretty good.

The 32c Conti UltraSport tyres that come on it are fine and work pretty well.

The Granite 2 is now $700 and that's pretty cheap. AFAIK, it's the same frame as the Granite 3, and it's been pretty stiff and responsive and I'm 6' and 95kg.

I wouldn't consider it an aggressive position at all.

Any questions, just ask

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:58 pm

Thanks everyone. I've narrowed it down to these three bikes.

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/compa ... 300-gc@298

Spoken to stores and the prices would be:

Giant Roam Disc 0 (2018 model) $1099
Giant Roam Disc 1 (2018 model) $899
Giant Roam Disc 1 (2019 model) $1150

What do you think?

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MichaelB
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby MichaelB » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:17 pm

Personally, I would get a cheap bike with front suspension. Their either heavy and/or don't work well. Also, wouldn't class then as 'CX' bikes, rather more like a cheap hardtail MTB.

Mind you, if that is what you want, fine.

Better going for a better rigid frame bike.

Those presented are all flat bars - don't want a drop bar bike ? You state in the OP, you want something 'fast' - I wouldn't class any of these in that category. They'll be a fair bit heavier than the likes of the Polygon, Kona or Reid

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:25 pm

Agent009 wrote:Thanks everyone. I've narrowed it down to these three bikes.

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/compa ... 300-gc@298

Spoken to stores and the prices would be:

Giant Roam Disc 0 (2018 model) $1099
Giant Roam Disc 1 (2018 model) $899
Giant Roam Disc 1 (2019 model) $1150

What do you think?


Don't think you'll need front suspension....a Toughroad would be a better option than the Roam.

Could even consider the Giant AnyRoad for $1299 (am sure could be found cheaper), which is a slightly more economical version :

Image

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/anyroad-2
Mmm, SunTour

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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:47 pm

Thanks guys.

MichaelB - I would like something fast but have no interest in racing. I thought the adventure bikes from giant would be fast enough for me.

In regards to dropbar, I've never owned a bike with these before. Can you just hold these like a normal flatbar when you dont want to go fast?

I thought the Roam series may have been the one for me....now I'm second guessing myself after your comments.

Based on the specs of these three toughroads, which one stands out as being the best buy:

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/compa ... 402-gc@406

Thanks so much guys for helping. I really appreciate it!!!

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Wed Jul 25, 2018 4:49 pm

Of those, the SLR GX2 (imo), the SLR1 is a close 2nd however (like the rack for commuting, see if they can put one on a GX2 for you)..
Mmm, SunTour

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:21 pm

Thanks 10speed.

Think I may be getting closer to finding the right one for me now. Thanks so much for everyone who has replied....bikes have changed so much (especially categories) since I last rode with any anger, very overwhelming trying to look through all the models and find the right one.

10speed - ok you picked the gx 2 in my last post. What about gx 2 vs SLR 0 (see below):

https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/compa ... 406-gc@401

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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 10:58 am

Any feedback on the two bikes in my above link?

Hoping to purchase one this weekend.

Thanks :)

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:14 am

The SLR0 is a slightly higher spec but it gets subjective. I personally don't like Tektro stuff, but have only messed around with Thektro hydraulic brakes on two bikes that were both flipped (both Merida) and I found the braking to be a bit too much like an on/off switch. I think the GX2 would do the job nicely. I think it would be worth your while to test ride each and determine whether you prefer the feel of the Giant braking system or the Tektro, and Shimano vs SRAM.
Whichever you purchase (both are good) make sure you have the initial service done on time, for everything to be re-torqued and re-tuned. This will go a long way towards ensuring you enjoy the experience...and also invest in a good floor pump like :
Image
like this Topeak Joe Blow as an example (I like these because of the nozzle design).
Mmm, SunTour

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:33 am

10speedsemiracer wrote:The SLR0 is a slightly higher spec but it gets subjective. I personally don't like Tektro stuff, but have only messed around with Thektro hydraulic brakes on two bikes that were both flipped (both Merida) and I found the braking to be a bit too much like an on/off switch. I think the GX2 would do the job nicely. I think it would be worth your while to test ride each and determine whether you prefer the feel of the Giant braking system or the Tektro, and Shimano vs SRAM.


Thanks mate.

I think for me it's going to come down to flat bar vs dropbar (I've never owned a dropbar bike before).

I like the SLR0 has 1x11 drivetrain....I want to keep things simple as possible and less things to go wrong. Plus that's more than enough gears for me.

I'll check the brakes as well.

My only other question around the SLR0 is the size of the tyres. They are 50mm which is probably too big for 95% on road?? Do you think they would swap to 38's or 40's (still tubeless) for no extra cost? Do you think that's smart?

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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:42 am

The tyres were my other concern, and I think that say a 38 or 42mm may be preferable, although 50mm will be comfy. Am not a huge SRAM fan, but also haven't had much to do with their stuff. I think a test ride is in order, but at the price of the SLR0 the other option is a Kona JakeTheSnake which I found a few entries back. Same price, but better brakes and Ultegra 10sp running on 33mm tyres (which I would swap for maybe 35mm or even 38mm Schwalbe Marathon Racer) :

Image
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 11:59 am

Thanks mate. I didn't ignore your recommendation for Kona Jake the Snake earlier. As I'm in QLD, we have no retailers. I really want to buy from a store (not online). This rules the Kona out.

I think I need to go into a store and see what dropbars are like....as I said, I've never owned a bike with dropbars before. If I like the dropbars, I'll then look at the Toughroad SLR GX 0 and GX 2.

I see the GX 0 can be had for $1999 online and the GX 2 for $1349....so I'll use these prices as bargaining power.

If I don't like the dropbar, the SLR 0 will be my only choice. I'll get them to switch to 38 or 42mm tyres...just hoping this doesn't impact the price. The SLR 0 can be had for $1779 online.

So, in summary:

Giant Toughroad SLR GX 0 $1999 (dropbar)
Giant Toughroad SLR 0 $1779 (flatbar. would need to have tyres changed for no extra charge)
Giant Toughraod SLR GX 2 $1349 (dropbar)

That's my plan at this point in time...I'm sure it will change before the weekend lol.

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10speedsemiracer
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby 10speedsemiracer » Thu Jul 26, 2018 12:18 pm

Ah, did not know your location. There are some benefits to buying in-store. Test ride, handle the merch, haggle. Whilst you may or may not be able to do much on sticker price, you may be able to haggle some lights/floor pump/a rack into the deal...
The good thing re the Giant brand is the Warranty experience. Have heard consistently good things from the few people who have had issues with their bike.
Mmm, SunTour

Agent009
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Re: Help me choose my Cyclocross bike

Postby Agent009 » Thu Jul 26, 2018 5:09 pm

Well I finished work early today and went to a Giant superstore and looked at a few bikes. Didn't take any for test rides but I sat on a few and tried the dropbars.

Firstly, dropbars were not as comfortable for me. Whilst I will want to go fast at times, I would sacrifice some speed for comfort. I imagine it would be a bit more stressful with the dropbars and probably not as stable (at least for me who has never used them before). Plus the brake levers seemed more difficult to access. Most times I ride I won't be going further than 10 or 20 kilometres, so dropbars probably not really required for my use.

So, really I am eyeing off two bikes now...both of which I saw today.

Toughroad SLR 0 (can get it for around $1800)
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/toughroad-slr-0

Roam 1 Disc (can get it for around $1150)
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/roam-1-disc-2019

Roam 0 Disc (can get it for around $1400)
https://www.giant-bicycles.com/au/roam-0-disc-2019

With the Roam's, they were better than I expected. The sales staff reckons they will be plenty fast enough for my requirements. I do like the colours of both the Roam 0 and 1 (from a visual perspective) and even though it has front suspension, I like how you can lock the forks to hinder the dampening (I didn't realise you could do this). They are heavier than the Toughroad at around 13kg.

The Toughroad did seem more "premium". I like how it has a 1x11 drivetrain. The SRAM Shifters looked the goods and I researched the Tektro Slate T4 brakes and they get great reviews (not like some other Tektro's). It came in at around 10kg I believe.

In order of preference:

Toughroad SLR 0
Disc 0
Disc 1

But I annoyingly forgot to ask them if they can switch the 50mm tyres on the Toughroad to 38 or 42mm for no extra cost....I'll ring up tomorrow. I'm hoping they will.

So that's where I'm at for now....hopefully will make a decision before the weekend :)

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