Newb but hopefully not too stupid question...


New Member
Hi everyone,
I’m new to road riding having lived all of my life in Dorset and grown up on a farm mountain bikes were always my choice until reaching 16 when I bought my first motorbike and swapped pedal for horse power.
Now nearly 20 years later I’ve ditched the motorbikes in favour of cycling again and for the past year and a bit myself and my partner have taken back to light mountain biking, 10-30 mile gentle dawdles occasionally longer distance.
We’ve really enjoyed getting back into it and now want to progress to road riding with a specific aim to build up in training and eventually ride Ventoux next September with my girlfriends 60 year old cycle mad father.
Now I don’t want to do the obvious newb thing of asking what bike do I buy but I do need a little steer between two specific bikes if anyone has a spare minute. So far I’ve done a lot of reading and a lot of looking and trying to understand specs and have finally got it down to a choice between two bikes and a dilemma.
My first hurdle was salesmen telling me repeatedly that road bikes don’t need a triple front ring. Sadly I do… some of the hills in Dorset are killers but nothing compared to an ascent of Ventoux on reasonably novice legs. Katie’s father’s first attempt to ride Ventoux a number of years ago was scuppered due to needing and not having the third ring and he strongly advised me to get a triple. I agree, I would far rather stand on the top and find out that I didn’t need it than to find half way up that I did and not be able to carry on. If I can keep moving forwards that’s all that matters to me.
Sadly money is limited, isn’t it always, so uber delicious carbon is not on the menu but I do have between 700- 900 budgeted to get something good. Most importantly I’m looking for a great frame and fork set to build on as needed.
After much reading I had pinned my hopes on the Giant Defy 3 with the Sora set up changed out to a triple. The defy frame and fork seem to only have good things written about them and my LBS offered to change it to a triple and only charge me £20 over the cost price for the change leaving me a with a total cost price of £720. I was happy…
Kate and her father are both intending to buy Bianchi via Nirone 7 Tiagras from the same shop and paying to have them converted to triples.
Now the spanner in the works is they then said they could do three Bianchis for £791 each plus the cost of the triple change which they are costing and getting back to me about tomorrow. £791 seemed like a heck of a good deal when the sticker price was £990.
My issue is from what I’ve read the Tiagra shifter has two model numbers one for a compact and one for a triple so I’m guessing that converting the Bianchi into a triple will require a new shifter and be far more expensive that the change on the Defy which has Sora shifters that already support a three ring set.
If that is the case my budget is really going to get hammered to go up to the Bianchi which I had initially ruled out as £990 was too much of a jump.
My question is… and my it took me a long time to get to it… Is the Bianchi worth the extra money on frame and fork quality or is the Giant as good but simply lacking the prestige of an Italian brand?
Which ever way I start to sway I immediately start to think I want the other bike after all. The Bianchi is beautiful but looks visually heavier for some reason, thicker tubes I guess. The giant is a great price, has really solid reviews and looks ok in a ‘alright it’s a Giant but it’s a good bike kinda way’.
I’m fully prepared to wait and find the extra money if honest advice stakes the bianchi as the better build, lower weight, better geometry for climbs/fast but not competitive riding but I don’t want to throw away a couple of hundred quid I could spend better elsewhere if all I’m getting is a name to drop.
Thanks very much for reading my drivel this far… I’d really appreciate any advice people can give! ;-)


Giant defy all the way for me - better frame and a more relaxed geometry for longer distance riding. I got a defy 4 wuth a triple upfront as i live in the valleys of south wales, lots of hills to climb you see.

But others might say something different.


Fast and careful!
First what gives you the best fit? I like the style of the bianchi like many ,but the defy fits me better ,and the set up is a better spec on mine ,it's also down to what you want it or ,defy is good for distance,as is less aggressive ,I bought a defy 3 advanced frame lately ,a few teething problems but well fast ,and afew centuries down beginning to feel the bike a bit more,not going to say about the triple ring that's down to you,I love hills!
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