Audax Specific Bikes

Discussion in 'Audax, Brevet and Randonnee' started by pkeenan, 17 Aug 2012.

  1. pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    I have been saving up toward buying a new road bike. My intention was to get a carbon frame, something like the Boardman Team Carbon.
    However, I'm planning on doing more audax riding in the near future, with a view to doing the LEL 2013. I've been undecided about which of my two bikes I would do this with, and still remain so.

    My general question is - what do audax riders (of all experiences) feel are the essential features of their bikes that make them audax specific?
     
  2. Noodley

    Noodley Guest

    My preference:
    The 'geomerty' of the bike ( I found a road bike was okay upto and including 300k rides, but anything beyoand that and I preferred 'audax/touring geometry - I do not know the technical bits) needs to be comfortable for long rides
    Triple chain ring (50-39-30)
    Large cassette (13-29 or likewise)
    Gel wrap on handlebars
    Bombproof wheels (heavy clumpers not required but they need to be able to withstand some considerable degree of punishment)
    A saddle that you are comfortable with (ignore anyone telling you that you 'must' buy a brookes)
    Mudguards (for your own comfort, minimising cleaning/damage of expensive bits, and so you don't splash people behind you or piss off cafe owners with your wet arse)
    Cannae think of anything else specific just now, but may later...
     
    pkeenan and mcshroom like this.
  3. mcshroom

    mcshroom Bionic Subsonic

    Location:
    Egremont, Cumbria
    Pretty much what he said ^^^ :smile:

    You'll get lots of suggestions for frame materials etc, but the most important thing is a bike that is comfortable. I'd also add room for 25-28mm tyres under the mudguards, and possibly a dynamo hub for longer night rides but not much else.
     
    pkeenan likes this.
  4. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    This is helpful, thank you both.
    The point you make about the dynamo is one I'm 'umming and ahhing' about.

    I have one coupled with a top-notch light on my Thorn, and can't stand the thought of doing something like LEL without it. But I'm not sure I would want to use my Thorn for a 1400km audax, as it's fairly heavy...
     
  5. mcshroom

    mcshroom Bionic Subsonic

    Location:
    Egremont, Cumbria
    What sort of wheel have you got on the Thorn? If it's a 700c then it should be easily transferable to the audax bike, with light when needed. so you could save the expense of a new wheel. Bit trickier with 26" though.
     
  6. Noodley

    Noodley Guest

    I never bothered with a dynamo, but would probably look into it when if I decide to do longer rides again.
     
  7. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    It's 26". I had considered taking the light and dynamo from my Thorn and putting them on the Spesh for LEL, though my Thorn wheels are so well built (3500 miles, still true) it seems a bit silly to go taking them apart.

    I think my issue is, I'm wondering whether it'd be worth buying an audax specific bike (long distance endurance riding is what I do best). Just been looking through possibilities, but ultimately not sure what I want.
     
  8. Noodley

    Noodley Guest

    I got an e-mail tonight frpm edinburgh bike cooperative and they have some decent looking offers on bikes - the sale starts tomorrow. You might be abler to pick up a bargain :becool:

    edit- the sale prices are now showing on their website
     
  9. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    Just checked that out - thanks for the heads up!
    It's not in the sale, but they have an attractively priced Revolution Audax there...
     
  10. Noodley

    Noodley Guest

    It shows as being in the sale now, at £500...maybe they are updating in segments, as the website seems to be unavailable every so often. Not sure about the gearing tho - compact gearing rather than triple.
     
    pkeenan likes this.
  11. StuAff

    StuAff Silencing his legs regularly

    Location:
    Portsmouth
    Another +1 for Noodley's comments. I've done up to 173 miles on my Viner (full carbon roadie, more sportive than full race geometry), including a couple of 200K audaxes, more than up to the job, but I'd agree that something with mudguards, wider tyre clearance, etc would be sensible. Apart from the already mentioned options, you might want to look at the various urban CX models around these days. Drops, big tyre clearances, usually mounts for racks and full guards, more often than not disc brakes as well. My Trek Portland is in this category, proved superb for covering long distances in all weathers. It's discontinued, sadly, but Trek have got a new model, the Crossrip, in much the same vein, though a lower spec. Planet X have the full carbon Dirty Disco on offer at the moment, but no rack or mudguard mounts on that. Also Boardman CX, Genesis Croix de Fer, Cotic X, and others.
     
    pkeenan likes this.
  12. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    @Noodley - Yes. Having said that, I could just swap the Sora triple chain set I have on my Allez to this, etc...
    A plan is hatching.

    Though I'm wondering about just telling my LBS what I'm after, and seeing if they can build up something to my 'spec'...
     
  13. mcshroom

    mcshroom Bionic Subsonic

    Location:
    Egremont, Cumbria
    We had a chat about that bike a month ago over on YACF. The general consensus seemed to be it was a decent bike, but a few concerns about the weight (12.3kg) and the compact gearing.

    My theory on the gearing would be that lowering it to 1:1 (I have a 28-28 on my current audax bike) wouldn't be that difficult requiring just a new cassette and mtb rear mech, so it wouldn't necessarily worry me too much.
     
    pkeenan likes this.
  14. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    Lots of suggestions there, thanks! Will look into them all :smile:
     
  15. OP
    OP
    pkeenan

    pkeenan Senior Member

    Location:
    Glasgow
    My past few posts have gone up simultaneously with other peoples - so apologies for what looks like a discontinuous stream of posts on my part!

    @mcshroom - I hear what you say about the compact gearing. I'm not so sure about the 1:1 gearing though - probably just because I haven't tried it. Might see if I can, though - sounds interesting. Thanks :smile:
     
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