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Which Bicycle?


Smudge.Smith
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Ok Chaps and chapesses, looking for some advice. I want a bike to compliment my running activity...not doing anything serious such as triathllons etc, just looking for something that I can commute to work on (30 mile round trip) and trips out using roads, national cycleways and occasional towpath type use. Also want to be able to stick it on the back of the car and take it away on holiday.

I'm looking at investing around £1000 and am currently impressed by the Chris Boardman range (particularly the Hybrid Perfomance Pro) which are getting great reviews...The down side to this is that i was looking to buy one via my employerss Cycle To Work scheme, but as Boardman are exclusive to Halfords (and my employer scheme doesn't deal with Halfords) then I either fork out the cash up front and get my dream bike or I let my employer convince me to buy an 'alternative brand' and take advantage of the tax break that comes with the scheme.

Any advice for an alternative or should I just fork out the cash and buy the one I want?

Cheers

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Ok Chaps and chapesses, looking for some advice. I want a bike to compliment my running activity...not doing anything serious such as triathllons etc, just looking for something that I can commute to work on (30 mile round trip) and trips out using roads, national cycleways and occasional towpath type use. Also want to be able to stick it on the back of the car and take it away on holiday.

I'm looking at investing around £1000 and am currently impressed by the Chris Boardman range (particularly the Hybrid Perfomance Pro) which are getting great reviews...The down side to this is that i was looking to buy one via my employerss Cycle To Work scheme, but as Boardman are exclusive to Halfords (and my employer scheme doesn't deal with Halfords) then I either fork out the cash up front and get my dream bike or I let my employer convince me to buy an 'alternative brand' and take advantage of the tax break that comes with the scheme.

Any advice for an alternative or should I just fork out the cash and buy the one I want?

Cheers

Get the Boardman, you wont regret it!

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According to my step-father, who has become a bit of a mountain-bike nut, the high end bikes that Decathlon sell are amazing value for money.

He was telling me a couple of days ago about a bike that's £1099 to buy from Decathlon, which has front forks that would set you back about £750 if you were to buy them on their own, just to give you an idea of the quality of the components.

Huge buying power of the company means they can put together fantastic bikes for a fraction of the price of most places.

http://www.decathlon.co.uk/rockrider-92-2011-id_8153766.html

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Judging by how you would utilise the bike, I'd strongly suggest a Cyclocross.. such as the Boardman Team CX Cyclocross. It'll handle the road far better due to the geometry/drop-bar position, equally, it won't have any issue with toepath use.

.. and if you did happen to do a little bit of 'mountain biking' on it, not a problem!

Edited by JamesK
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I would kill for a Boardman! Sadly, not much point having a nice bike where I live in London, as it just attracts the attention of thieves.

Plus, even if you have a beautiful light bike, once you have added the necessary D-lock(s), mudguards, panniers, lights etc, it weighs double... that's why I stick with my horrible old Ridgeback ermm.gif

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Thanks to everyone (all 4 of you) who replied. I have decided to fork out myself and go for the Boardman CX (Thanks JamesK for that). The cycle to work scheme doesn't offer that much in the way of saving when you work it all out, so am going for the one I want rather than buy something I may later regret for the sake of saving a few quid.

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I have a Cube CLS LTD Pro, absolutely fantastic commuter bike for £500 and is quite capable of doing some off road. :blink:

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  • 1 month later...

A vote against Boardman from me. Whilst they look like great value bikes (and the finishing kit available on them is very good for the price-point), the frames IMHO really aren't up to it - this is where money has been skimped.

Personally, for £1k, I would be looking at the Whyte range. British built and very good value for money. The frames alone can be stand-out both in terms of build-quality, durability and liveliness.

I have a Whyte 19C carbon hardtail, which I built up to a 21lb racing XC bike. The frame is beautifully crafted, taught and supremely lively.

I was so happy with the 19C, I ended up buying a Whyte Montpellier hybrid for commuting. Ok, so this is out of your price-range, but the models below it - Stirling & Cambridge use the same frame (which is a peach) and very good finishing kit, again for the price-point. The frame is so good that you would quite happily upgrade it when things wear out in the future.

The hard thing for me was finding a bike which had sufficient durability to cope with potholed roads, enough speed for the longer bits of the journey outside of London, and one with enough stability to filter and ability to brake hard when necessary. I had a Cannondale Badboy Ultra for a while, but the gearing was too short (off-road biased). So then I tried a GT racing bike, but too compromised for braking, filtering and being observant, but was quicker than the BadBoy.

I ride my Montpellier on a 25mile (each way) commute into Central London from Essex/Herts border and does high-speed a-road bashing, to urban filtering, traffic light sprints and pothole shrugging with equal aplomb. Best £1.5k I've ever spent on a bike (and I've had lots!).

If you need something more rugged, they have a C7 range which is more chunky-hybrid biased and a "Cross" range which is more proper Cyclocross bike.

Don't get me wrong - Boardman aren't bad bikes, it's just that they get a lot of profile through Halfords, whereas IMO Whyte bikes are better and have a smaller dealer network (although you can source through Evans which does Ride to Work too).

Edited by Spuffington
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