Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Off the back.
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

I've been lurking/reading for quite some time now, but finally about to pull the trigger on my first non-mountain bike. I've got a 6" travel mountain ride that I love, but at 30lbs is just too porky and slow for me to commute on. Also I'm planning on doing some road events, not races, like the MS150 this summer and the big dual squish just isn't gonna cut it.

So I've been reading and searching for a good cyclocross bike. Why cyclocross? I think it gives me some added versatility over a straight road rocket. My commute crosses through dirt roads and smooth singletrack trails that I could hit (also can go straight paved roads), plus one of the training rides I do at lunch is a combination of gravel path/paved road/dirt road. So I think a CX bike fits my bill perfectly.

So the three bikes I've gravitated towards are the Felt F1x, the Lemond Poprad and the Specialized Tricross comp. I've ridden the Specialized, and I'm about to ride the Poprad tonight after work. I can't find any Felt dealers around that have a F1x (wrong time of year) for me to demo, but I'm working on it.

I've got some concerns in general, hoping some of you who have the knowledge can shed some light on:

1. Gearing - I live in Boulder, CO where the hills are long and can be quite steep. I'm very concerned about the 39/23 smallest combination on the Felt. I can get a new cassette or crank, but the dealer isn't willing to swap out the crankset for a compact crank. For non-racing type applications, what kind of gearing combinations do you guys run?

2. Weight - The Tricross Comp I rode weighed about 22lbs, which was considerably more than what I expected. I expected their to be a much bigger gap than 8lbs between my 6" dual squish and a cross bike. Is this weight reasonable for cross/road applications? I'm guessing the Lemond will be slightly heavier since it is similarly equipped and a steel frame.

I know the real decision is test rides and fit, but I'm hoping to leverage some of the information that some of you have undoubtely gathered in going through a similar process.

So am I on the right track? Also, if I throw on full slicks on one of these bikes will I be able to hang with buddies on road rides? I know that I'm not going to win road races on any of these bikes, I just want to be able to do some casual road rides with non-racing buddies that are on dedicated road bikes without suffering too much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
813 Posts
For hanging with road rides, youll need the gearing to do so 53/39. Id stick with the standard noncompact cranks and put a 12/27 in the rear. You should be able to ride any hill with 39/27 and stick with buddies with 53/12.

As far as weight, yea stock cross bike is going to typically come in at about 20-21 lbs. (Check my sig for some of the lightest cross bikes though.) And 8 lbs difference is alot, but you could get that down to 18 lbs for extra $$. You'll be faster on the roads also with the narrower tires and no shocks compared to your mtn rig.

if youre concerned with weight, a steel bike "might" not be the best option for you. but i dont want to start a war, so ill just say that yes steel weighs more than aluminum.

lastly, welcome to the club, let us know which you choose.

j
 

·
Off the back.
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
jeremyb said:
For hanging with road rides, youll need the gearing to do so 53/39. Id stick with the standard noncompact cranks and put a 12/27 in the rear. You should be able to ride any hill with 39/27 and stick with buddies with 53/12.

As far as weight, yea stock cross bike is going to typically come in at about 20-21 lbs. (Check my sig for some of the lightest cross bikes though.) And 8 lbs difference is alot, but you could get that down to 18 lbs for extra $$. You'll be faster on the roads also with the narrower tires and no shocks compared to your mtn rig.

if youre concerned with weight, a steel bike "might" not be the best option for you. but i dont want to start a war, so ill just say that yes steel weighs more than aluminum.

lastly, welcome to the club, let us know which you choose.

j
Duly noted, sounds like solid advice. I stumbled across your blog a week or two ago when I was starting my search.

An update:
I just did a demo ride of the Lemond Poprad, a bike which I expected to be a distant 3rd in my selection, and absolutely loved the feel of it. It felt like home to me where as the Specialized Tricross I rode earlier today really felt like I was fighting the positioning.

I've got a couple test rides left to do, and will probably go back and ride the Tricross again to make sure, but right now the Lemond is out front. I never expected I'd like the feel of the steel frame, but this one really felt great to me.
 

·
Kant phuckin sphell
Joined
·
650 Posts
I looked at all of those bikes before I built my Specialized CX bike for about the same price as those. I like mine better, though it took a little more time and my frame is used I think it is worth it. A lot of the parts on those store bikes are kinda of junky and do not look like they would hold up for long.
 

·
Not Banned
Joined
·
49,249 Posts
good work!

ride them all and choose the one that feels the best. Steel is gonna weigh more but will provide a slightly sweeter ride. Steel serves as suspension so what you gain in weight you will save in 'feel' and comfort. Choose the bike that fits you best and feels the best. This willserve you far better than a slight weight savings. careful, my squish bike sees lotsa dust as my cxer gets more trail use. It'll stoke you as trails you now find too easy on the fully will get real interesting again.enjoy
 

·
Off the back.
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
the bull said:
I looked at all of those bikes before I built my Specialized CX bike for about the same price as those. I like mine better, though it took a little more time and my frame is used I think it is worth it. A lot of the parts on those store bikes are kinda of junky and do not look like they would hold up for long.
Yeah I've looked at the build-up route. I agree there are some parts that are suspect on each of these, but I'm not opposed to riding it till it breaks and uprading.

The Felt F1x frame is pretty reasonably priced IMO, but even with the cheaper frame I found myself way above the prices I could get the other bikes for. Both shops are offering me significant discounts from the MSRP as CX racing season is quite some time away. I've always just bought frames and built up my mountain bike rides, but for this bike it just seems easier for me to buy a complete package, especially since I don't have a whole lot of experience with road parts in general.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,229 Posts
Any of the three is a decent bike, the Lemond will weigh more. Top tube length is critical and the component spec will likely be a deciding factor, look out for crummy wheels. ANyone should be willing to swap a 12-27 for no charge, a dealer that says no can go screw his or herself, for my money.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Just my $.02. I got a used Felt FX1 about one year ago and really love it. It was my first cross bike. I really wanted steel just for the ride quality, but I got a great deal on the Felt frame, so I thought I would give it a try. I did some races on it this last winter and really enjoyed it but I also ride it 1-2 days a week just for something different. Even though it's aluminum, it's a lot more comfortable ride than my aluminum road bike. I can ride some of the slower weekend groups rides and do just fine, even with 700x32 tires. I have a single ring up front and with a set of A.C. 420 wheels it weighs 18-19lbs. Haven't ridden the other two so I can't comment on them.
 

·
Off the back.
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The update:

Couldn't ever track down a Felt F1x for a test ride. I really like the look and component spec of the bike, but I just don't feel comfortable buying a bike that I've never gotten to ride.

So right now I'm about 95% sure I'm headed the Poprad route. I'd prefer a compact crankset (with external bottom bracket) and carbon fork, but it isn't really a deal breaker to me. Plus the I can pick up the Lemond about $300 cheaper than the F1x or Tricross Comp so I've got some upgrade dollars already built in.

Gonna do one last round of test rides to be sure. Thanks for all the help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
563 Posts
SenorBlanco said:
The update:

Couldn't ever track down a Felt F1x for a test ride. I really like the look and component spec of the bike, but I just don't feel comfortable buying a bike that I've never gotten to ride.

So right now I'm about 95% sure I'm headed the Poprad route. I'd prefer a compact crankset (with external bottom bracket) and carbon fork, but it isn't really a deal breaker to me. Plus the I can pick up the Lemond about $300 cheaper than the F1x or Tricross Comp so I've got some upgrade dollars already built in.

Gonna do one last round of test rides to be sure. Thanks for all the help.
I've been speaking to many cross riders and shop owners, and all of them told me a cross fork made out of carbon is the only way to go and not just from a weight standpoint. They said the comfort diff is amazine especially if you're on an aluminum or steel frame.

I had a road Orbea with a carbon rear seatstay and I felt it was mainly marketing and would not spend the $$$ again, but I'd never ride a road-ish bike without a carbon fork.

Is it me or does the Poprad carbon fork look like an old Wound Up??
 

·
Not Banned
Joined
·
49,249 Posts
yes the Trag cx fork looks alot like the wound up.

save some extra cash and get the canti version. use the $ you save for an extra wheelset.
 

·
Off the back.
Joined
·
102 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
bikewriter said:
I've been speaking to many cross riders and shop owners, and all of them told me a cross fork made out of carbon is the only way to go and not just from a weight standpoint. They said the comfort diff is amazine especially if you're on an aluminum or steel frame.
Interesting observation. I tested the Spec. Tri Cross (alum frame/carbon fork) and the Lemond felt much, much more compliant to me than the Specialized even though the Lemond has the alum. fork on it. I'm not crazy about the Bontrager carbon fork on the Poprad disc, so if I went the carbon fork route it would probably be an aftermarket fork anyway.

I'm still kicking tires, but I'll definitely take note of the carbon fork route and bounce it off some of the shops.
 
1 - 13 of 13 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