The good thing about a CX bike is that it's heavier than an equivalently specc'd roadbike. Bike economics 101 states that "you pay more for less" so a CX bike is going to be cheaper.
$800 will get you a race-ready CX bike if you shop around, which is more than adequate for your needs. I know FOR SURE that $1000 will. Redline, Kona, Surly and van Dessel are 4 smaller name CX bike manufacturers that I can think of that would likely suit your price point. And I'm sure all the big names have a CX bike in the $800-1000 range.
That said, I'm not sure that now is not the time to be hunting for a deal on CX bikes as the start of the season is only a couple of weeks away. But you never know...
Edited by: WONGERCHI at: 9/2/2010 (10:10)
In God we trust, all others bring data. - W. Edwards Demings
If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise. -P.Z. Pearce
Around how much does a good CX cost? Or a hybrid? The Trek hybrid I test rode was $450 but I wasn't sure if that was average or not.
I am willing to spend more money on a better bike, but when I look around again I don't want to sound like an idiot saying I don't want to spend more than, say, $800 on a CX if the average price is a lot higher.
Just had to weigh in here as I have a hybrid and have had one for something like 15 years. Really what you need to do is find a bike you love to ride. You can always get slicks. I rode my hybrid over 400 miles in the mountains of Colorado on Ride the Rockies. So you can do anything you set your mind to do!
Thanks for the response everyone! I had been wondering about a cyclocross bike, so I'm glad so many people mentioned them.
So If I get a cyclocross bike, I would be able to switch out the tires to something thinner for racing, right? I was reallly hoping to be able to make do with one bike at first, at least until I get the bug like everyone else, lol. If I race it would just be for the sake of competing. I'd rather finish later in the race but have a bike that suits my needs while not competing.
I'll echo the statement that you may end up needing two bikes down the road. My first one was a cyclocross (CX). Perfect for the rails-to-trail path that I started out riding, and also prepared me for the form and function of a road bike. Unlike a hybrid, which most people seem to outgrow as their primary bike very quickly, I kept my CX bike for 5 years before upgrading to the road bike, even doing my first triathlon with it.
But just like the others here, I got to the point when I wanted something faster. So then came the carbon fiber road bike. I kept the CX bike, added panniers, and still take that to the trail. And now, when I commute on my bike, that's the one I take.
I am not a fan of hybrids. They take away the best functions of a road bike (lightness, manueverability), and the best functions of the mountain bike (shock absorbing, durability), and use what's left for the hybrid. They seem to cost less, and there is a good reason for that. If you can do it, invest a little more money for something that will last you much longer.
Just my opinion. I know some folks here love their hybrids, and I'd never take that from them. So really, what you need to do is go to your LBS, and test a road bike, a hybrid, a mountain bike, a cyclocross, a comfort, and whatever else they have. Find what *you* love.
Fitness Minutes: (49,969) Posts: 8,566 9/1/10 7:33 A
A comfort bike is for the rider who enjoys cruising through the neighborhood leisurely. You can't get in a more upright position than in a comfort bike except for standing! It totally is not for any kind of competition!
Four years ago, I knew nothing about bikes and was riding my late mother's hybrid bike that was old and needing retirement. I was considering starting to train for a sprint triathlon but still also enjoyed riding on a long crushed limestone path near my house. After telling this to my LBS salesperson, he suggested a Bianchi Hybrid bike. Well, I loved the bike at first and did use it in the first two years of doing triathlons. But once I understood cycling more, I longed to have a road bike and wished I had bought that instead. Last February, that is what I did. I purchased my first road bike and LOVE it! BUT....I did keep my hybrid. It is not advisable to take a road bike on off road biking (though I occasionally see a lost soul doing so).
Check out cyclocross bikes. They keep you aerodynamic, are lighter in weight, but have a bit of a wider tire where you can go off road as well as on. Here's an article on such bikes and further down, you'll see a section on "Non racing use". I'm no expert on this kind of bike and don't own one. A few on here do, however and seem to like it.
Otherwise, like Ohiobluegrass said, you many need two different bikes. I've kept my hybrid for when I want to ride the paths. Now that the tri season is over for me, my road bike is resting while my hybrid is getting the workouts. :)
The Trek Navigator is a round the block 2-3 mile per day bike. You need to look at a Hybrid bike. They are built like road bike with flat handlebars and thinner tires. It's designed for trail riding or road. Down the road you will most likely find you will want a road bike. They will actually be more comfortable and faster. It's hard to believe but true. I started this year with a Hybrid and 2 months later purchased a road bike, because I just had the hunger to put on more and more miles on each night. I ride at least 25 miles 5 days a week and always one of those days 45-50 miles. I am happy that I have both bikes because there are times when I just want to cruise around the local park with my wife. The next most important thing is to test drive different bikes and make sure your LBS fits the bike to you..or you will not have a ride that is enjoyable. it is amazing the little tweaks in fit make a big difference in how the bike performs for you.
Fitness Minutes: (6,196) Posts: 174 9/1/10 12:37 A
If you really need on and off road bike, look at Surly bikes. I love my Surly Cross Check! Be honest though-a bike that can handle off road will never be competitive in road races! If you want an all around bike, look at Surly or other bikes like Trek, Specialized, etc.
If you really want to be competitive in road races, you need a road bike that is really, really light, efficient, etc. My Cross Check is none of those-I don't think a thing aobut weight-it is very durable and happy when I add panniers and expect it to haul a watermelon and more home from the farmer's market! My Cross Check is anything but fast, but it is efficient and WAY better than the mountain bike I rode last year! Figure out what your priorities are-speed vs. function. I'm sorry to say, but you might need different bikes for different parts of your life. Bikes that are fast are not really designed for function, and vice versa. Figure out what you want most now, and accept that you might want something a bit more specialized in the future.
Alright, another newbie "what bike do I get?" post. Sorry, guys.
I want a bike that I can ride both on and off-road (I live in a rural area so being able to ride on dirt roads is a must). I'm not interested in racing right away, but it's something I'd like to think about doing in a couple years--possibly duathlons but I doubt I'd do a tri.
The guy at my LBS suggested a comfort bike (Trek Navigator 2.0) for both my brother & me--he just needed something for commuting at college. I test rode it and while it felt nice, it seems like it's not really enough of a performance bike for me, especially since I'd like more of a fitness bike (I've lost 10 lbs and would like to lose around 15-20 more) than just a leisurely one.
So, was he right about the comfort bike? Or what would you suggest?
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