Hybrid bikes - looking for advice



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Bengt-Olaf Schn

Guest
I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt path. However no real off-road riding.

I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700

Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.

Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
 
R

Rich Clark

Guest
"Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
> gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
path.
> However no real off-road riding.
>
> I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
> Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700

The more you ride, the more likely you'll be glad you bought a bike with drop handlebars, like the
Volpe or the T800/T2000. Just make sure the bike is set up with the steerer tube cut long enough so
the bars can be as high as you want them to be. Since choosing drop bars involves some different
hardware (shifters, brakes) that affects cost and future upgrade paths, it's a critical choice.

Aside from that, all those bikes (except I don't know anything about the Motobecane) are quality
products; the choice between drop bars and flat/riser bars is the one you should make first, IMO.
That'll eliminate several entries from your list.

After that you should focus on fit, which is the most important aspect of a bike's suitability.
And during the process of determining which bike fits you best, you will get a very good sense
of which local bike shop is the one you want to deal with -- and that's almost as important as
fit. Interestingly, the two issues interact: the best bike shop will turn out to be the one that
is willing to spend lots of time and attention on getting you properly fitted to the
perfectly-sized bike.

RichC
 
M

Mud Dog

Guest
Some quite different bikes here, I wont beat about the bush I sell both Cannondales and Treks, the
T2000 is an out and out Tourer, drop bars, STI controls with pretty much traditional touring
geometry i.e. not quite as stretched as a racer but much more head down than the Treks which are
much nearer to MTB style. The Treks will be considerably lighter than the "Dale" (IN UK spec at
least as some markets get suspension forks) and better in the city with the flat bars and upright
seating position, the Dale is an expedition horse or longer distance commuter. Both the Treks and
the Dale have frames hand made in the US. Hope this helps

"Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
> gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
path.
> However no real off-road riding.
>
> I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
> Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700
>
> Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
>
> Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
 
M

Mud Dog

Guest
Some quite different bikes here, I wont beat about the bush I sell both Cannondales and Treks, the
T2000 is an out and out Tourer, drop bars, STI controls with pretty much traditional touring
geometry i.e. not quite as stretched as a racer but much more head down than the Treks which are
much nearer to MTB style. The Treks will be considerably lighter than the "Dale" (IN UK spec at
least as some markets get suspension forks) and better in the city with the flat bars and upright
seating position, the Dale is an expedition horse or longer distance commuter. Both the Treks and
the Dale have frames hand made in the US. Hope this helps

"Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
> gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
path.
> However no real off-road riding.
>
> I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
> Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700
>
> Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
>
> Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
 
M

Mud Dog

Guest
Some quite different bikes here, I wont beat about the bush I sell both Cannondales and Treks, the
T2000 is an out and out Tourer, drop bars, STI controls with pretty much traditional touring
geometry i.e. not quite as stretched as a racer but much more head down than the Treks which are
much nearer to MTB style. The Treks will be considerably lighter than the "Dale" (IN UK spec at
least as some markets get suspension forks) and better in the city with the flat bars and upright
seating position, the Dale is an expedition horse or longer distance commuter. Both the Treks and
the Dale have frames hand made in the US. Hope this helps

"Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
> gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
path.
> However no real off-road riding.
>
> I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
> Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700
>
> Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
>
> Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
 
J

John Wiegley

Guest
>>>>> On Mon Jan 13, Rich writes:

> Aside from that, all those bikes (except I don't know anything about the Motobecane) are quality
> products; the choice between drop bars and flat/riser bars is the one you should make first,
> IMO. That'll eliminate several entries from your list.

Does having the drop bars make it a Cyclocross bike?

John
 
B

Bengt-Olaf Schn

Guest
Have you seen any differences in repair history or service between these bikes. I guess the weight
difference between the Treks and the Cannondale is mostly due to the frame material or are there
other differences to be aware of ?

"Mud Dog" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> Some quite different bikes here, I wont beat about the bush I sell both Cannondales and Treks, the
> T2000 is an out and out Tourer, drop bars, STI controls with pretty much traditional touring
> geometry i.e. not quite as stretched as a racer but much more head down than the Treks which are
> much nearer to MTB style. The Treks will be considerably lighter than the
"Dale"
> (IN UK spec at least as some markets get suspension forks) and better in
the
> city with the flat bars and upright seating position, the Dale is an expedition horse or longer
> distance commuter. Both the Treks and the Dale have frames hand made in the US. Hope this helps
>
>
>
> "Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]...
> > I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads
> > and gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
> path.
> > However no real off-road riding.
> >
> > I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
> > Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700
> >
> > Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
> >
> > Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
> >
>
 
R

Rich Clark

Guest
"John Wiegley" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
> >>>>> On Mon Jan 13, Rich writes:
>
> > Aside from that, all those bikes (except I don't know anything about the Motobecane) are quality
> > products; the choice between drop bars and flat/riser bars is the one you should make first,
> > IMO. That'll eliminate several entries from your list.
>
> Does having the drop bars make it a Cyclocross bike?

Not necessarily, although 'cross bikes usually do have drop bars. The
T2000/T800 are touring bikes, and the Volpe is closer to a touring bike than anything else.
Generally (very generally), a 'cross bike will have a higher bottom bracket for better ground
clearance, and a double crankset. But 'cross bikes can be made into excellent commuter/touring
bikes, depending on your needs.

If you're looking at the T-series C'dales and the Volpe (which is a great bike), the Trek 520, the
Fuji Touring, and the Novara Randonee should also be on your list. Also the Bruce Gordon BLT.

RichC
 
J

Jon Isaacs

Guest
>I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is for riding mostly on roads and
>gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt path. However no real off-road riding.
>

>I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and Sirrus
>Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700

>Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
>
>Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.

A couple of questions:

How much riding experience do you have, are your familiar with the differences between drop bars and
flat bars, STI shifters and MTB.Hybrid style shifters?

IF you are comfortable with drop bars and the roads are relatively smooth, the touring or cyclocross
style bikes like the T2000 and the Volpe could be good choices. But if the roads are rough and
filled with holes and you will bounce around quite a bit, then you might find the more upright
position of the Hybrid design gives you less vibration in your hands and a bit more control.

Another option to consider is a mountain bike fitted with appropriate gearing and narrower smooth
tires. The real advantage of a MTB over a Hybrid is that you can mount wider tires, I currently have
an older GT Zaskar setup with 1.75 inch wide road tires, it works quite nicely on gravel, even rough
dirt riding and yet performs reasonably well on the road. The ride is certainly smoother over rough
roads than a bike I have setup as a cyclo-cross bike.

Every year we travel to Arizona, New Mexico, Utah from California and car camp. Often I see cyclists
touring. Over New Years I talked to a fellow doing a 1000+ mile self supported tour, he was on a
basic mountain bike. I see this quite often, these bikes can be comfortable, efficient and reliable
on the road.

Without knowing the balance of your riding, it is difficult to advise, are you looking at 50%-50%
split between pavement and gravel/dirt? If that is the case I would suggest considering either the
hybrid or MTB, they work very nicely on the road.

The real issue with hybrids and road bikes when riding off the pavement is the fact that wide tires
are not available for them and even then the widest sizes often will not fit. If you think you may
want wide tires to provide a decent ride over those gravel roads, then consider a mountain bike.

I make the following comment:

Most often the biggest difference between two bikes is the dealer that sells them. Not only is setup
of the bike important, but the time the dealer takes to make sure you know what you are getting and
are happy with it.

So I suggest finding a dealer who seems to be helpful, knowledgeable and happy to take the time to
make sure you are comfortable with your purchase. A dealer who sells for less but just wants to sell
you a bike may be more expensive in the long run than the one that is concerned about you.

Jon Isaacs
 
M

Mud Dog

Guest
We sold I think only 1 of the Trek 7500's last year and none of the 7700's as opposed to at least 6
or 7 of the Cannondales, that is I think due to the type of bikes people in the Uk buy rather than
anything else, the hybrid market in the UK is very strong but not for high end types, we sell lots
of the 7200 and 7300 models for instance. The major weight savings are probably in the wheels, the
Treks have lightweight paired spoke tech wheels as opposed to well built touring style though I
would say the frames are lighter as well because of design rather than material. Ive not seen any
frame problems with either bikes "Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> Have you seen any differences in repair history or service between these bikes. I guess the weight
> difference between the Treks and the Cannondale is
mostly
> due to the frame material or are there other differences to be aware of ?
>
> "Mud Dog" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> news:[email protected]s-binary.blueyonder.co.uk...
> > Some quite different bikes here, I wont beat about the bush I sell both Cannondales and Treks,
> > the T2000 is an out and out Tourer, drop bars,
STI
> > controls with pretty much traditional touring geometry i.e. not quite as stretched as a racer
> > but much more head down than the Treks which are
much
> > nearer to MTB style. The Treks will be considerably lighter than the
> "Dale"
> > (IN UK spec at least as some markets get suspension forks) and better in
> the
> > city with the flat bars and upright seating position, the Dale is an expedition horse or longer
> > distance commuter. Both the Treks and the
Dale
> > have frames hand made in the US. Hope this helps
> >
> >
> >
> > "Bengt-Olaf Schneider" <[email protected]> wrote in message
> > news:[email protected]...
> > > I am shopping around for hybrid bike or cross-bikes. Planned use is
for
> > > riding mostly on roads and gravel roads, but also the occasional dirt
> > path.
> > > However no real off-road riding.
> > >
> > > I have been looking at the following bikes: Trek 7500+7700 Specialized Sequoia Exper and
> > > Sirrus Elite Motobecane Cafe Latte Cannondale T2000 Bianchi Volpe Raleigh C700
> > >
> > > Any advice/comments on the strenghts/weaknesses of these bikes.
> > >
> > > Thanks, Bengt-Olaf.
> > >
> > >
> >
>
 
R

Risto Varanka

Guest
Jon made a good comment, some additions. In '98 I bought a Nishiki hybrid, so this is based on my
experiences riding it. Nowadays I'm interested in recumbents, especially the road machines like
low racers.

Jon Isaacs <[email protected]> wrote:

: IF you are comfortable with drop bars and the roads are relatively smooth, the touring or
: cyclocross style bikes like the T2000 and the Volpe could be good choices.

As I mostly ride smooth, paved bike tracks/paths, I eventually came to the conclusion that I'd have
been better served by a touring bike with drop bars. Smoother rolling tires and the more aerodynamic
racing position would give you more speed.

Nowadays I look forward to owning (and riding :) multiple bikes, so I can have something even more
optimized towards road and other fast riding.

: But if the roads are rough and filled with holes and you will bounce around quite a bit, then you
: might find the more upright position of the Hybrid design gives you less vibration in your hands
: and a bit more control.

Can't you mount aero bars on flat handlebars? AFAIK they would give you the most aero position
available, which is widely used on triathlon and track bikes. Think I've seen them on a similar
hybrid as mine over here... maybe the optimum solution for some people? :)

: Another option to consider is a mountain bike fitted with appropriate gearing and narrower smooth
: tires. The real advantage of a MTB over a Hybrid is that you can mount wider tires, I currently
: have an older GT Zaskar setup with 1.75 inch wide road tires, it works quite nicely on gravel,
: even rough dirt riding and yet performs reasonably well on the road. The ride is certainly
: smoother over rough roads than a bike I have setup as a cyclo-cross bike.

I occasionally ride my hybrid on rougher paths, like gravel, lots of potholes, even forest trails.
This is slow and annoying, though the bike is ok on the better, smoother dirt/gravel roads. Frontal
suspension could help, but it's a speed disadvantage in a few ways :)

: Without knowing the balance of your riding, it is difficult to advise, are you looking at 50%-50%
: split between pavement and gravel/dirt? If that is the case I would suggest considering either the
: hybrid or MTB, they work very nicely on the road.

Yup it depends on the balance. Mine is well over 95% pavement, but my hybrid can survive the
occasional trip on rougher surfaces. A MTB would make riding in this kind of environment
comfortable.

--
Risto Varanka | http://www.helsinki.fi/~rvaranka/ varis at no spam please iki fi
 
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