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Road bike musings
#1
This may come to nothing, but I've been tempted with the idea of a road bike of late.  Given my back history I'd be looking for something designed with some comfort in mind so most likely a sportive bike.  I've taken a look online and in some shops and chatted about it, but to be honest it's not an area I know much about.  So my questions are...

*what should I be looking for in a bike of this type for around £1000 (give or take) eg. groupset, wheels
*I like the idea of carbon - should this be a dealbreaker and will I notice the difference from an alloy frame?
*I've heard different things about sizing - anything from 51 to 56cm frames for me (5ft8, 30 inch inside leg).  Seems like quite a range...
*more to the point, given my back history is it worth getting an online steal or investing more at a LBS and getting it properly fitted?
*how do this this and this look for value as a start point?
*any brands to look for / avoid?
*where is the best LBS local to Sevenoaks to get some advice and look at / test some bikes?

I like the idea of a longer ride on a road bike before I decide if its for me so a shop that does demos would be good

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!
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#2
Hardtail MTB FTW.
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#3
"sirromj" Wrote:Hardtail MTB FTW.

Thanks, already have one converted for road use and looking to take it up a level

Should say I'm looking to use this for road rides predominantly up to a couple of hours with the odd longer trip
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#4
With a back issue it makes sense to be measured/fitted.Don't right off alumium frames,Cycling Plus Feb 2014,the current issue,tests 4 ali frame bikes,each just over £1000.A Sportive bike is probably a good idea,will offer a more comfortable riding position.
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#5
I maybe bias but my genesis equilibrium is very very good, comfortable, fast, fun. Google some reviews and your get the same.

<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/road/sportive/equilibrium-10">http://www.genesisbikes.co.uk/bikes/roa ... librium-10</a><!-- m -->

Mine is a 56, you know how tall I am, 5'11 with about a 32 inside leg. Your welcome to take mine out, got some good road riding from my door.
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#6
Now is a great time to be buying due to the sales. I'd guess you'd be a size 54, but test riding extensively would be best. For groupo, aim for Shimano 105 or SRAM rival, though Tiagra and Apex are both fine too. At that price you will likely end up with entry level wheels, but both the Shimano and Mavic wheels that turn up on these bikes will do fine for recreational riding.  Regarding frame material, I too have read not to discount aluminum, but I really would aim for carbon due to the poor road surface we have. It's not just the potholes, but rather the constant buzz from the chip-seal.

For shops I like TBW in Sevenoaks, and the CycleUK in both Tonbridge and Maidstone.
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#7
I'm very interested in this thread. I'm 5ft9" with a lower back issue - made worse more often on the roadie. I need a bike to allow for my disproportions: with a nice short top tube but not so small that my high saddle looks ridiculous for my long legs!

With a new longer commute only a week away I am planning to upgrade my commuter in the new few months ready for the summer Smile
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#8
For £1000 I'd be looking very seriously at a Boardman roadie. Nice Frame with decent kit on it and plenty of scope to lighten it up/upgrade parts if you feel the need later on. For a test ride give Nigel a shout as I suspect his would fit you just fine.

For a smidge over your budget you can get full 105 brakes and groupset here
If you dont get on with it, should be quite easy to move on as well.

Be good to get you roadie'd up, another step closer to a Sketchy Road Race team!
2010 Canyon Aeroad 9.0 SL
2014 Specialized Epic Marathon
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#9
Road bikes are painful, not what you want for a bad back but that aside...I have a cheap boardman, one chain and a tyre in 1.5yrs, proper guard mounts which make riding in the 11 wet seasons a lot better. If getting one then join British Cycling for £25 or something as you get 10% off at Halfords. Due to the sales and discount I paid £550, 20 speed, wide ratio, full carbon fork inc steerer, brake cables integrated unlike most cheap ones which have them dangling out etc
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#10
I've not had a bad back on my steel frame in over 4000 miles.
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