Novara Randonee Touring Bike

Best Price At

DESCRIPTION

Entry level touring bike. Reynolds 520 frame.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-7 of 7  
[Jun 15, 2011]
Sonny Garcia
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

In expensive
Smooth

Weakness:

I wish it had disc brakes

First it is not a 2007 it is 2010. Drop down needs to be updated.
Everything is standard off the shelf that came with the bike. Added Jand front rack and Serfa Saddle. Ortlieb front panniers, and Office Pannier. 34 RT to work.

[Jul 23, 2010]
Rob
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Comfortable ride. Able to carry weight. Easy to attach fenders. Set up for 3 water bottle holders. Cheaper then comparable bikes.

Weakness:

Wish brakes had more grab. Uncomfortable seat. Heavy (but this expected). Lower end components (also expected).

This is a great commuting and touring bike. I ride 45-46 miles RT 5 days a week and it does the job well. It has a comfortable riding position and provides a smooth ride. I can easily carry all of my clothes and lunch on this frame.

Similar Products Used:

Trek. Old steel frame road bike.

[Jun 05, 2010]
Lee
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

I hit a curb straight on...it was an "oh s***". Not a trace of damage! I weigh 185. I still can't believe it.

Weakness:

The brakes could be better. Need more grab.

I had a Novara Strada bike before this and it was just too much a race bike. I got the Randonee and love it. Heavy yes, and that's ok. This is a bike you feel at home on immediately. The steele frame and longer wheelbase make for a nice ride. More stable that the Strada.

[Jun 15, 2009]
Anonymous
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Basic, no nonsence components, wide gear range, excellent tires and a very sturdy rack (actually a bit overbuilt).

Weakness:

The paint is very easily scratched and the color choice is an ugly brown (2008 model). I found the stem to be too long for a touring bike and the frame size (120mm on a 54 cm frame) and I ride more stretched out and lower than most tourists.

The Randonee is a well thought out Touring bike that would also serve well for commuting. The paint is very easily scratched and the color choice is an ugly brown (2008 model). The stem is way too long for a touring bike and the frame size (120mm on a 54 cm frame, and I ride more stretched out and lower than most tourists.

Similar Products Used:

Trek 520 (2005 purchased used and resold due to poor gearing range.

[Oct 07, 2008]
Anonymous
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

The frame is very solid and the compontens are good. The rack is high quality also. Inertia Designs panniers are the best.

Weakness:

The paint is awful. It comes right off.

A great bike. I love it. I would buy another one.

Similar Products Used:

Specialized alley, but that is a road bike.

[Mar 19, 2008]
Anonymous
Recreational Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Steel
Designed as a touring bike.

Weakness:

Toe overlap and lower water bottle cage mount.

The Randonee is an excellent value for the dollar. Well designed with an exceptionally smooth ride. The wheels have held up great and the gearing is fine.

Similar Products Used:

Cannondale ST 1000

[Sep 19, 2007]
Anonymous
Commuter

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Great value if you get it on sale
Shimano canti brakes have very good stopping power
Lots of braze-ons for fenders and racks
3 water bottle mounts
Comes with beefy rear rack

Weakness:

Coffee brown color is boring
Stock saddle sucks
Heavy (but what else do you expect from a steel touring bike?)
Doesn't come with a kickstand

This review is for the 2007 Randonee. I do not use the bike for touring, I bought my Randonee to primarily use for commuting, weekend rides, and occassionally for towing my kid's bike trailer. I have had the bike six months now and have put about 1000 miles on it.

I used my spring 20% off coupon to buy the bike, at that price it is a very good value compared to equivalent bikes (Fuji Touring, Jamis Auroa, Bianchi Volpe). I test rode a Trek 520 and did not think it was worth the extra money versus the Randonee at 20% off retail. REI seems to put decent quality parts on their bikes in places many buyers don't think about, like headsets and bottom brackets (for example my Randonee came with a $60 FSA Orbit X headset).

I have not experienced any spoke problems with the rear wheel as mentioned in reviews of the 2001 Randonee. The stock wheels are 36h Tiagra hubs with Mavic A319 touring rims and straight gauge SS spokes painted black, those wheels are sturdy but heavy, and have stayed true.

The bike is a bit heavy, I have a 59cm frame and it weighs around 28-29lbs including the stock rack but without any other accessories. In full commuter mode with fenders, lights, and rack trunk, my bike weighs about 35lbs.

The Tiagra/Deore drivetrain shifts reliably but seems a little noisy at times. The Tiagra brifters have clear plastic windows with orange markers to indicate what gear you are in. At first I thought the gear indicators were pretty cheesy, but I'm really starting to appreciate them.

Overall I have been quite pleased with my Randonee. It has been a very reliable commuter and is still fun to ride on the weekends.

Similar Products Used:

91 Raleigh Olympian
Test rode a Trek 520

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