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  1. #1
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    OT: Cyclocross bikes.. recommendations?

    Hey all... let me start by saying, I did try the search option and couldn't find any good advice, so I'm turning to my fellow front rangers. I'm considering a cyclocross bike and was looking for some good entry-level recommendations. Basically, I'm hoping to find a great deal or buy a used bike for about $500 (not sure that's even possible based on preliminary searches). Recommended bikes, brands, and any other advice is appreciated. Also sizing question: I'm 5'6.. would I be looking at a 52 or 54 cm bike? I sat on both at the bike shop but to be honest it was such a different positioning than mtb that they both felt a bit awkward and stretched out.

  2. #2
    !Vamos, flaco!
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    You should check out the cross forum on roadbikereview.com, lots of good folks there.

    In my opinion, cross bikes are really only ideal for racing cross. As a road bikes, there are various compromises in geometry etc. that make them not quite as good as a road or road touring bike. You can also get a road frame and roll on 28cc tires with standard road brakes, without having to get long reach brakes. You can then ride on pretty much any dirt road (you can do that with 23ccs as well). As a bike on dirt roads, the position will be a lot more agro than a mountain bike, or even xc mountain bike, but you won't really be able to hit trails, at least ones that are very tech. with skinny tires. For non-racing purposes and occasional dirt road rides, a 29er with skinnier tires is just as good.

    But if you want another bike, why not?
    "Fact is only what you believe; fact and fiction work as a team." Jack Johnson

  3. #3
    This is how it started...
    Reputation: sdsantacruzer's Avatar
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    I may have just what you are looking for.

    PM sent.
    Life is about the ride.

  4. #4
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    You'll actually want a 50cm. I'm 5'9" and ride a 54cm road bike, but had a 52cm cyclocross bike. I had a Tricross and really liked it. I swapped out the tire and rode it like a road bike quite a bit.

  5. #5
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    Pablo's advice raises this question: what do you want to use it for? A lot of people, myself included, use a cross bike as a do-all bike: a little cross racing, some mixed pavement/dirt rides, a little touring etc etc. That's how I use mine and my Gunnar Crosshairs is great for it. Soma, Surly, and Salsa also have pretty good offerings for a versatile bike. But you won't get them new for $500. Maybe used.

    If you'll lean more toward off-road usage, then a rigid 29er might be the way to go. And you can still do cross races with it (except UCI races if you have disc brakes..or have they changed that rule???).

    Good luck

  6. #6
    !Vamos, flaco!
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    Quote Originally Posted by llama
    And you can still do cross races with it (except UCI races if you have disc brakes..or have they changed that rule???).
    As far as I know, they haven't--which is ridiculous. But if someone's inquiring about a beginner cross bike on a local mountain bike forum, it's probably not gonna be an issue.
    "Fact is only what you believe; fact and fiction work as a team." Jack Johnson

  7. #7
    enlightened.
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    edenger - check your pms

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by athalliah
    edenger - check your pms
    I have PMS??? uh oh

    And yes Pabs is right... won't be racing it. Looking for something to build some base miles riding pavement/dirt roads when I can't make it to the trails (I'm in Denver), and ride some mellower single/double track.

  9. #9
    contains quinine
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    Quote Originally Posted by athalliah
    edenger - check your pms
    Blue & Yellow?
    Take the long cut, we'll get there eventually.

  10. #10
    rr
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    You should be able to find a nice used one for $500, look at the Redline's as well, not sure on size at your height but you do want to go one size down from a road bike if that helps, I'm on a 58cm at 6'2".

    On the brakes, discs are nice in the snow and muck especially compared to the canti's which were dismal after years of riding disc brakes and v-brakes before that. Try and get a frame with tabs so you can upgrade later, aftermarket forks are available with tabs as well if you don't get one. Also, I really enjoy 2nd brake levers on my bars for the trails so I don't have to be on the hoods or drops for braking, the more upright position helps as well.

  11. #11
    enlightened.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Debaser
    Blue & Yellow?
    Yup. The bike is a bit too small for me. I like it a lot, I'll buy another, just need something larger than a 53.


  12. #12
    Thread Terrorist
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    my neighbor races all the CX races in the area and has a ton of knowledge. IF you don't get info through the wisdom of peeps on here, PM me and I'll put you in contact with him.

    ...or just go to Scott Bristol's State Farm Insurance agency in Golden, and ask for him.

  13. #13
    HowtoOverthrowtheSystem
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    I had a LeMond Poprad when I lived in Colorado...broke/bent the seat stay doing a charity ride in Italy...chain snapped...freak accident. It was a sweet ride though. More like $800 but you can find some nice used ones.

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