So I’ve been out and tried a couple of bikes. Decided I wanted to stick with something I’d actually had a chance to ride for a first purchase.
I sort of narrowed everything down to getting a cyclocross style bike. These seemed to have the requisite clearance for decent touring tyres, the mountings for mudguards, a reasonably upright riding positions, decent strong wheels and seem to hit the right price point for me. I did think about tourers but the prices seem to have headed skywards, and I’ve never been keen on bar end shifters.
I test road a couple of models of Specialized TriCross, but really didn’t rate the brakes at all. Though between riding the Sport and Comp models I came to the conclusion that I didn’t like Tiagra shifters, I just found it hard to hit the upshift button with my thumb from any hand position.
So in the end I’ve gone with a Pinnacle Expede 1.0 from Evans. I took it out for a test ride and it felt good, the position seemed to be good for me given the quick set up in the shop. I liked the breaks, most of the components seem to be 105. Plenty of clearance for tyres and mudguards. And as a bonus the 2010 model had £200 knocked off as well. Which helped cover some of the cost of shoes, SPDs, helmet and lights (amazing how all the extras add up).
Picked it all up tonight and pedalled it home through 5 o’clock Nottingham traffic. For the first time I’ve cycled in traffic in years it wasn’t too bad. I did wuss out of the roundabout at the top of Maid Marian way and walk it around the pavement. And I made a slight detour to indulge in a little Paris-Roubaix dreaming over the cobbles on Dryden Street.
Need to practice slow speed riding, just a little wobbly after a few years off and being back on skinnyish tyres.
Unfortunately the weather over the next couple of days doesn’t look wonderful so I may have to content myself with dreaming and running instead.