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Hybrid vs Road Bike?

Discussion in 'Sports Arena' started by PermaChanged, 14 Apr 2010.

  1. PermaChanged

    Mobster

    Joined: 19 Jan 2006

    Posts: 4,121

    Hey people,

    I want to get myself a bike to cycle in to work Mon-Fri, only about 2 miles each way, but I'm stuck whether to look into a hybrid or a road bike. The one reason I don't fancy a road bike is I think I'll look a bit daft on one and whether or not they're going to be comfortable for someone my size? I'm 6ft4 and a big built 21stone, I want to cycle as part of a new lifestyle to lose weight.

    The benefit I see with a hybrid is the fact that they can have front suspension with lock outs for road riding as well as tyres which can be used on light trails without too many problems.

    I have a budget of around £500 and was looking at the Scott Sportster range. What would you recommend for someone of my build and with my requirements?

    Thanks,
    Jonny
     
  2. Jonny69

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 3 May 2004

    Posts: 17,674

    Location: Kapitalist Republik of Surrey

    At your weight (no offence meant) you might find a road bike (as in a racer) a bit painful to ride. The skinny tyres make a harsher ride but the rock hard saddle will really bite into you unless you switch to a comfier one. I'm only 10 stone and feel like I've been kicked up the butt by a horse after riding mine for any amount of time.

    Hybrid will sit you up a bit straighter, the tyres will soak up a few more of the bumps and you won't be huddled over the handlebars like a racer.

    Frames come in different sizes so sit on a few in the bike shop before you commit. Evans let you ride some of them too.
     
  3. [DOD]Asprilla

    Capodecina

    Joined: 10 Nov 2003

    Posts: 14,034

    Location: Surrey, by the river

    This question comes up all the time for new riders and there isn't a right or wrong answer.

    A hybrid is more approachable and they generally have a shorter reach (distance between saddle and handle bar) than a road bike. However, a lot of manufacturers use exactly the same frames for their road and hybrid bikes, simply changing the handlebars and levers.

    This shorter reach is more comfortable for short journeys; I use my hybrid when I do into town or to the station since it's generally less than 2 miles (mind that's also because it's a hack that looks like a complete shed and has flat pedals as opposed to clipless). However, for anything over, say, 5 miles in the saddle I'd choose a road bike.

    What I would suggest is that you don't spend too much on a first bike (mine was £70 second hand) and you find out if you enjoy cycling and exactly what you want to do; The last bike I bought form a shop when I first started biking again was a rubbish MTB in case I wanted to go off-road - i never go off-road and I don't have any intention of doing so.

    If you decide you want to start cycling further and need a different bike then you might want to look at a Cyclocross; it's a road frame, but generally prety relaxed geometry with room for fat off-road tyres. For roads and light off road suspension forks are overkill (IMHO).
     
  4. PermaChanged

    Mobster

    Joined: 19 Jan 2006

    Posts: 4,121

    None taken at all, it's self inflicted :p

    I think for starting up hybrid sounds better for me for the reasons you mentioned, perhaps when I become fitter and lighter a road bike would be an option, perhaps it will never be an option as I can't see myself being any lighter than 17/18st!

    I used to cycle everywhere up to the age of 17 when I started to drive, so I'm happy in the fact I'll enjoy cycling so I might as well jump in at the deep end with something of decent spec and comfortable to ride. Do you have any recommendations? Are the Scott Sportsters any good?
     
    Last edited: 14 Apr 2010
  5. [DOD]Asprilla

    Capodecina

    Joined: 10 Nov 2003

    Posts: 14,034

    Location: Surrey, by the river

    As I pointed out in another thread Lawrence Dallaglio just cycled from Rome to Edinburgh (via London, Cardiff and Dublin) on a carbon framed road bike; road frames car a lot tougher than non-cyclists give them credit for.
     
  6. clv101

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,812

    Location: Bristol

    In your position, I'd be tempted to buy a 2nd hand mountain bike (there are loads around) for under £100, and add some slick tyres to it. This will be a cheap and robust way to get going, after a few months you can sell it again recovering most of the value and buy something more fancy.

    I have a slick shod MTB for hacking around town and a carbon road bike for long rides and races.
     
  7. [DOD]Asprilla

    Capodecina

    Joined: 10 Nov 2003

    Posts: 14,034

    Location: Surrey, by the river

    They look alright to me. One of my mates bought one before Xmas, but I don't think that he's ridden it. Only thing that puzzles me is that the P5 and P6 appear to be the same price and I'm not familiar enough with the components to see the difference between them.
     
  8. PermaChanged

    Mobster

    Joined: 19 Jan 2006

    Posts: 4,121

    The P5 seems to have suspension, the P6 doesn't. The P55 has disc brakes where as the P5 has V brakes. The P4, the one I'm interested in, has suspension forks with lockouts and Shimano Deore derailleurs where the cheaper models have Acera derailleurs. After a bit of research seems the deores are smoother and more consitant than Aceras.
     
  9. oddjob62

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 8 Nov 2002

    Posts: 9,128

    Location: NW London

    Start saving now for the road bike you are going to want in 18 months time when you've shifted a bit of weight and started doing longer rides.

    My hybrid lasted about 6 months before i moved on.
     
  10. Jonny69

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 3 May 2004

    Posts: 17,674

    Location: Kapitalist Republik of Surrey

    Also check freecycle. I have three bikes all from freecycle; a shopper, a racer and a sort of hybrid. They are all good bikes. The shopper is for the 5 minute hop between the station and work, and it's easier to just grab, jump on/jump off and lock up than the other two that are better for the longer ride between home and the station.

    All three just needed a set of tyres and a bit of oil and they were good to go. The locks owe me more than the bikes do :D

    What was the point I was trying to make? Oh yeah: you can try a style of bike out and see if you get on with it without having to commit too much money.

    Selle san Remo saddles are nice and padded so you could stick one on a road bike. Higher range Selle saddles come in different widths to suit the rider. Might be worth looking into. Also don't forget you can swap parts around so if you don't get on with drop bars but you like skinny tyres you can put straight bars on with a soft gel saddle and have a sort of road hybrid cross hybrid thing ;)
     
  11. PermaChanged

    Mobster

    Joined: 19 Jan 2006

    Posts: 4,121

    Thanks for all the good advice, I'll have to pop down to one of the cycle shops to see what they have in / recommend.

    Thanks again,
    Jonny
     
  12. PhillyDee

    Capodecina

    Joined: 12 Feb 2007

    Posts: 14,114

    Location: South Shields

    I got myself a Giant CR-Zero and it is a great bike. I would however, like to do a bit of offroad, cycle paths, and the like, which I cannot do on that bike (Its really really painful!)

    Best thing I ever bought was some padded cycling shorts! (No, not the Lycra go faster ones!) So much better.