Bike / Bicycle buying advice?

Found 22nd Jul 2010
I'm looking at getting a new bike, mainly for road use, but also for park paths/hills and to keep fit. Not a clue what brands are decent and dont want to be taken a ride by sales people (pun unintended!).

I'm looking for one under £250 but can stretch to £350 (MAX) if the extra £100 can be justified (ie. Bargain price, much better components etc).

I'm not really sure the best place to buy from, but I know Evans seem to have a lot within my price range. I'd buy one on ebay as i know i'd get more for my money but im not really confident in buying something used when I don't know much about the thing I'm buying.

I guess my main questions would be:
Type of bike? Would I need hybrid or road.. Are road bikes able to climb steep hills in parks (on tarmac/paths)? I dont think i'd be riding on grass or rough terrain. What's the main difference between hybrids and road bikes?

Brand: I've heard of Trek, Specialized, and Carrera being decent brands, but I don't really know of any others! Which brands should I stay away from and which should I look out for?

Components: for my budget which components would be best? In regards to brakes, disk or V? I've heard bikes around the £250 mark have decent quality v brakes, ones with disk brakes at that price tend to be cheap and nasty, Is this true?

All in all I think I'm looking for £250-350 Mens Hybrid/Road bike with a lightweight frame (32" inside leg I'm guessing 20" frame?)

I'd be really grateful of any good advice, tips, links etc!


  1. Misc
  2. Bike
  1. Misc
  2. Bike

Original Poster

What's bad about Halfords? They don't seem to have many for the price I want so i probably wouldn't be buying from there.

On evans the following bikes are in my budget. Some quite nice ones but i dont know a thing about them, just going off looks! Lol



I'd buy a Kona smoke from rutland cycles via ebay they are £199 delivered and Rutland are fantastic to deal with !!! as shown in the thread below!!

Your text here

you'll be fine in Halfords. I dont know what 'whatsthepoint' problem is, but you'll more than likely get excellent service and a better value bike than from most other places.
If you are going to be on hard surfaces, the carrera gryphon would be a good bike to look at. It has wide gearing for hills, plus it has a flatbar if you are unsure of a road bike dropbar.

Edited by: "shanecr" 22nd Jul 2010

I would have to agree that Halfords is terrible. I live in a small city, but they only have one mechanic, he only works 2 days a week. No-one else knows anything about the bikes. I bought a bike there last year, and they recalled one of the parts. It took them more than 2 weeks to change the rear suspension. I appreciate there was delivery time, but once it arrived I could have done it myself in an hour or 2. The bike then went on to break after about 2 months of ownership, through no fault of my own. They wanted me to pay them £25 and wait another week to fit an £8 part that should take 5 minutes to fit. They had it in stock, so I bought it and did it myself. Now steer clear of them unless I need an inner tube.

I also have had several problems with Halfords gearing and brakes. been in 3 times and still wont change into 1st gear of the shifter by your feet.

Original Poster


I'd buy a Kona smoke from rutland cycles via ebay they are £199 delivered … I'd buy a Kona smoke from rutland cycles via ebay they are £199 delivered and Rutland are fantastic to deal with !!! as shown in the thread below!!Your text here

Thanks for the link, will deffinately add it to my list. Do you know how this stacks up against other bikes around the £300 mark?

Well my general consensus is that hybrids dont offer the best value for money and better value can be had from making either a road bike more trail/park friendly by adding some slightly wider treaded tyres or fitting some narrower tyres on a hardtrail bike.
If your looking at a road bike that you will use on toe paths then there is only one good choice that drops into your price range and thats the Raleigh Airlite 100 HERE and just add some suitable tyres like 'Michelin World Tour'.

As for hardtrail bike there are loads to choose from. One's with lock out forks are useful for road use and again narrower tyres are useful if your doing lots of road cycling.

If a hybrid is the way you want to go and you dont want to look like a sunday afternoon cyclist then the Felt QX65 is a very stylish hybrid bike.
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