Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
635 Posts
bikewriter said:
Looking for a commuter/dirt road cross bike and the REI Novara Element looks good (meaning I'm cheap and the price of $1099 is not bad). Yeah, it has a steel fork, but REI has a 15% off sale soon.

Anyone ridden this? My local REI store does not stock them, but the geometry seems good for my tastes.

http://www.rei.com/online/store/Pro...roductId=47972898&parent_category_rn=40004203
Actually the fork is alum (still heavy though). Also, they run a little on the big side. I normally ride a 56 but on the Novara i would take the 54, short in the TT but a high standover. Mainly because of the traditional geometry (horiz TT). They claim its race ready but it would be better suited for a commuter in my opinion, not that you couldnt race it though. The disc brakes are a bit finicky to set up as well. I recomend shortening all housings (after you get your stem positioned where you want it) & re-taping them to the bars really good. I set up a lot of these & its the brakes that give me the biggest head ache. Other than that, they are nicely spec'd. Kind of heavy but hey, its a disc brake equipped cross bike for $1K. Another thing to consider is that this frame is disc brake only, no brake bosses so you're stuck with discs forever.

If you would like a lighter, racier bike, check out the K2 Enemy. No discs but for the same price as the Element you get a better spec'd bike thats race/commuter ready (& it handles much better in my opinion). Either way you'd be getting a cross bike & thats a good thing. :)

http://www.rei.com/product/47970691.htm#

DP
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,116 Posts
It seems there are a lot of cross bikes in that price range. I would be concerned with the gearing- are you sure you want a double (how dirty are you planning to get)?

You should be able to buy a Bianchi Volpe cheaper (even with the 15% discount).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
DPCX said:
Actually the fork is alum (still heavy though). Also, they run a little on the big side. I normally ride a 56 but on the Novara i would take the 54, short in the TT but a high standover. Mainly because of the traditional geometry (horiz TT). They claim its race ready but it would be better suited for a commuter in my opinion, not that you couldnt race it though. The disc brakes are a bit finicky to set up as well. I recomend shortening all housings (after you get your stem positioned where you want it) & re-taping them to the bars really good. I set up a lot of these & its the brakes that give me the biggest head ache. Other than that, they are nicely spec'd. Kind of heavy but hey, its a disc brake equipped cross bike for $1K. Another thing to consider is that this frame is disc brake only, no brake bosses so you're stuck with discs forever.

If you would like a lighter, racier bike, check out the K2 Enemy. No discs but for the same price as the Element you get a better spec'd bike thats race/commuter ready (& it handles much better in my opinion). Either way you'd be getting a cross bike & thats a good thing. :)

http://www.rei.com/product/47970691.htm#

DP

All great input! I did just find the K2 Enemy in my searches. Wow!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
jeremyb said:
why not go used? this is the cheapest route and you can get a better bike for less money.

although i do like the color of the element.

jeremy

The cross market around here is slim, and used is even slimmer. I'd like to test ride one, and with REI's return policy I can ride it for a week or two and get another size if I'm not 100% satisfied. Thanks for the ebay link!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
filtersweep said:
It seems there are a lot of cross bikes in that price range. I would be concerned with the gearing- are you sure you want a double (how dirty are you planning to get)?

You should be able to buy a Bianchi Volpe cheaper (even with the 15% discount).
My commute to work is mostly flat. I don't plan to get that dirty with this purchase. I'm no masochist but a 39/27 should be fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
117 Posts
rear spacing

Is the Novara Element rear wheel spacing 130mm or 135mm? As a disc only cross frame it would be nice if it were 135mm since this size hub seems more readily available in disc.

DPCX said:
Actually the fork is alum (still heavy though). Also, they run a little on the big side. I normally ride a 56 but on the Novara i would take the 54, short in the TT but a high standover. Mainly because of the traditional geometry (horiz TT). They claim its race ready but it would be better suited for a commuter in my opinion, not that you couldnt race it though. The disc brakes are a bit finicky to set up as well. I recomend shortening all housings (after you get your stem positioned where you want it) & re-taping them to the bars really good. I set up a lot of these & its the brakes that give me the biggest head ache. Other than that, they are nicely spec'd. Kind of heavy but hey, its a disc brake equipped cross bike for $1K. Another thing to consider is that this frame is disc brake only, no brake bosses so you're stuck with discs forever.

If you would like a lighter, racier bike, check out the K2 Enemy. No discs but for the same price as the Element you get a better spec'd bike thats race/commuter ready (& it handles much better in my opinion). Either way you'd be getting a cross bike & thats a good thing. :)

http://www.rei.com/product/47970691.htm#

DP
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top