I am suffering from needing a new shiny shiny toy.
The old bike is over 20 years old and I ether need to spend money on it or replace it.
This raises the quandary how much do you spend on a 20 year old steel bike?
I also weigh over 100 Kg
For someone who has never really ridden off road and dose the majority of their riding on bitumen and formed dirt tracks a mountain bike seems to be overkill.
Are hybrids a reasonable compromise or the worst of both worlds?
My birthday is in about a month’s time and this would be the perfect excuse for something new and shiny.
I have an Avanti Blade 4, hard suspension, carbon forks. 700x23 Specialized Armadillo All Condition Tires. Just rolled over 17000km for the last two years. Indestructible. Handles metal roads with care. Hopeless in sand. I weigh 94kg down from 100kg. Took 3000k in March carrying 17kg luggage + up to extra 8kg water some days. If I was going to do more off bitumen my first step would be to change the tires... Andrew
I bought an Avanti Blade a couple of years ago. Worst bike I ever had. It was in the shop more than I rode it.
I'm 6'4" and weigh in at a not-chunky 115kg. Within a week of buying the Blade, I had popped a spoke. After 12-or-so spokes, the shop arranged for the wheel to be laced with some DC champions under warranty. Next they found the quick release axle was bent. This was replaced with a fixed axle. Then the hub (probably having been under stress from all of the above) karked it. New wheels under warranty was next. Spokes started breaking again. The rear wheel was once again laced with DC's but by this stage I had had enough and opted to spend some good money on a good bike.
I bought a Specialised Sirrus Pro and I have to say it is an amazing bike. Light. Strong. Comfortable. I've had it for a couple of months now (approx 700kms) and I've not had a single problem with it.
Reading Andrews post, it would seem that his Blade was one of the better models (I bought the cheapest). I think the moral of this story is : You get what you pay for. Best of luck.
That's a crap thing to have happen Jase. Mind you, I had a Sirrus before my Avanti, and the frame and both wheels collapsed! To be fair, I was T-boning a car at 40k! Andrew
I weigh over 100km, my 10 year old Mongoose hybrid with triple crank and suspension has served me well but a bit heavy in the hills. My Jamis hybrid twin crank is much lighter and is better up hills, but i would like to get a road bike as I'm starting to actually enjoy hills.
I'm going to print that comment about hills Clive, just in case you forget you said it one day ;)
My Kona Dew Plus has been brilliant as a hybrid. Handles sealed paths excellent, does some unsealed/gravel ok but at slower speeds, Rapid Fire shifters, Disc brakes, fixed suspension, Very comfortable bike. Costs me about $850 from Oxygen Cycles in Mclaren Vale. Can get it under $700 now online if you know your size.
If by hybrid you mean with front suspension, then they are ok for general use on bike paths, dirt roads etc. I still have my first one for trundling down the shop, however if you're doing more road riding you will soon get sick of the suspension bobbing and riding against the weight, also the sit up and beg position gets tiring into a head wind. I found a flat bar type bike with no suspension to be much better on the road and with tough tyres quite suitable for dirt roads but the sit up position is a pain into wind. For general use I now ride a steel framed light tourer with strong wheels and drop bars to get down into the wind, handles bitumen and dirt roads, bike paths pretty much anything really, it's hard work slogging up steep hills though.
Don't forget the 'flat bar road bikes' - a tamer version of the racer with flat bars, but generally lighter and sportier than the hybrid which is more your sit up and beg riding position. Mind you, these terms are really dodgy as they're applied by marketing divisions intent on sales rather with any logic a cyclist would use.
And what's wrong with your current ride? My Europa dates from the days of friction shifters and five speeds on the back, yet she's still serving me well, albeit in a different guise/role.
My missing Merida hybrid was in my opinion overkill for metro commuting, made heavier by a front suspension that was never needed. I tend to agree with the flow of the conversation here, flat bar roadie. Maybe something like the new Orbea Carpe's - a bit heavier, but plenty of rack mounts.
My 19yo Mongoose 700C hybrid is good. But on a bike this old, many things might need maintenance - wheel bearings, bottom bracket, headstem etc, Clusters and chains are consumables. Currently I have road wheels on the bike, put on it by my son (whose 13th birthday present it was) for commuting on the plains (along with a 53tooth single chainwheel, now replaced by a triple, as per original). I still have the original wheels, with tyres with good tread, but not knobbly, for dirt road use - change the quick-release wheels to suit what you're doing. While I can't use flat bars, flat bars were the setup for 18 1/2 years of the bike's life, and worked very well for my son. (BTW, I'm 105kg).
Recently rode up the Corkscrew on it, and down Montacute Rd at about 45-50, riding conservatively, as I was still getting used to the handling.
Give your bike a birthday present - a refurbishment.