Home

Beginner looking for my first road bike. I've cycled a bit before when i was young but i've never done road cycling. Looking for a bike to get into the sport and perhaps a bit of commuting.

 

Currently looking at two different bikes and can't decide. The Triban 520 comes with a carbon fork and shimano sora. I can get it at a local Decathlon store for 583 USD.

 

The Specialized Allez E5 comes with aluminium frame and shimano claris. It's currently on a 25% discount and retails at 656 USD.

 

The spec on the Triban definitely looks better, furthermore it's cheaper than the Specialized E5. But a lot of friends and forums have said that i should go for a better frame rather than a better groupset.

 

Would value any opinion! Thanks in advance!

11 comments

Avatar
trohos [36 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

Hi. 

If you thing to change the bike after a while, go for the cheaper. if you have on your mind to keep the frame and slowly upgrade components go for specy, the E5  is a very very good material + the geometry of the specy is more relaxed. Also check the weight and which of the two have better wheels.

Have in your mind that in this price range you don't get a race bike.

Avatar
kil0ran [362 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

520 is a good practical frame - space for mudguards and rack I believe. Just check its the whole Sora group from your store - often the manufacturers mix and match. For example, Decathlon often use their own brakes rather than Shimano one. Not necessarily a bad thing but useful if you want to compare the relative value of two bikes.

Spesh have a reputation for supplying heavy wheels that don't match the quality of the frame. If mudguards are important check that the frame will take them. 

Avatar
dottigirl [633 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

I'm no great fan of Specialized (though I have an alarming amount of their kit), but I note the Allez E5 does have a carbon fork too.

Not having used either of the current generation of Claris or Sora, I'd say there wasn't much between them, in practicalities at the beginner level.

Specialized Allez E5 current specs:

https://www.specialized.com/us/en/alleze5/106308

Interesting details:

Quote:

FORK Specialized FACT carbon, alloy crown/steerer

[BRAKES] Tektro, caliper, dual pivot, short reach

[OTHER GROUPSET] Shimano Claris 2400

CRANKSET Shimano Claris, 50/34T

CASSETTE Sunrace, 8-speed, 11-32t

CHAIN KMC Z7, 8-speed, w/ reusable MissingLink

BOTTOM BRACKET Shimano, Octalink spline

[WHEELS] AXIS Classic

[TYRES] Specialized Espoir Sport, 60TPI, wire bead, double BlackBelt protection, 700x25mm

Compared to the 520:

https://www.btwin.com/en/road-bikes/sport-road-bikes/20149-triban-520-ro...

Quote:

DRIVETRAIN Shimano SORA 
CRANKSET / CASSETTE Sunrace 9-speed 12x25 cassette.
Shimano Sora 50X39X30 chainset.

[note: bottom bracket not listed]
BRAKES Shimano long, dual-pivot callipers
WHEELS B'TWIN Sport wheels, 32 spokes. Aero 32 hub. 
TYRES Hutchinson Equinox 2 - 700 X 25

8-speed compact versus 9-speed triple crankset, and a 32 versus 25 largest sprocket. 

Is where you live relatively flat or hilly? 

Regarding the commute, do you have somewhere safe to lock the bike? If not, I assume the Spesh would be more of a thief magnet than the B'Twin.

Others know more about the components than me, so I'll let them expand...

Avatar
BarryBianchi [178 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

I'd go triban every time.  Higher spec groupset and more gearing, front and back rack mounts - more versatile all round, and it's cheaper.  And around here anyway, Decathlon seem to put their bikes together well, and have decent competent mechanics.  What's not to like?

Nothing wrong with Spesh - I have one - but the Triban is just far better bang for the buck here.

Avatar
Frank_Ma [4 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
trohos wrote:

Hi. 

If you thing to change the bike after a while, go for the cheaper. if you have on your mind to keep the frame and slowly upgrade components go for specy, the E5  is a very very good material + the geometry of the specy is more relaxed. Also check the weight and which of the two have better wheels.

Have in your mind that in this price range you don't get a race bike.

 

Thanks man! I probably won't be changing my bike anytime soon, just looking for a bike to get into road cycling.

Avatar
Frank_Ma [4 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
BarryBianchi wrote:

I'd go triban every time.  Higher spec groupset and more gearing, front and back rack mounts - more versatile all round, and it's cheaper.  And around here anyway, Decathlon seem to put their bikes together well, and have decent competent mechanics.  What's not to like?

Nothing wrong with Spesh - I have one - but the Triban is just far better bang for the buck here.

 

Thank you!!

 

The Triban does have better spec for a lower price, but I assumed that Specialized E5 would come with a better frame. A lot of my friends have told me to focus on getting a better frame rather than looking at the specs only.

 

To be honest i might go for the Triban simply because, as you said, it is more versatile and i can attach panniers to it. 

 

Also the discount on the Allez E5 looks like a pretty good deal and it might be a shame if i were to miss it.

Avatar
Frank_Ma [4 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
dottigirl wrote:

I'm no great fan of Specialized (though I have an alarming amount of their kit), but I note the Allez E5 does have a carbon fork too.

Not having used either of the current generation of Claris or Sora, I'd say there wasn't much between them, in practicalities at the beginner level.

Specialized Allez E5 current specs:

https://www.specialized.com/us/en/alleze5/106308

Interesting details:

Quote:

FORK Specialized FACT carbon, alloy crown/steerer

[BRAKES] Tektro, caliper, dual pivot, short reach

[OTHER GROUPSET] Shimano Claris 2400

CRANKSET Shimano Claris, 50/34T

CASSETTE Sunrace, 8-speed, 11-32t

CHAIN KMC Z7, 8-speed, w/ reusable MissingLink

BOTTOM BRACKET Shimano, Octalink spline

[WHEELS] AXIS Classic

[TYRES] Specialized Espoir Sport, 60TPI, wire bead, double BlackBelt protection, 700x25mm

Compared to the 520:

https://www.btwin.com/en/road-bikes/sport-road-bikes/20149-triban-520-ro...

Quote:

DRIVETRAIN Shimano SORA 
CRANKSET / CASSETTE Sunrace 9-speed 12x25 cassette.
Shimano Sora 50X39X30 chainset.

[note: bottom bracket not listed]
BRAKES Shimano long, dual-pivot callipers
WHEELS B'TWIN Sport wheels, 32 spokes. Aero 32 hub. 
TYRES Hutchinson Equinox 2 - 700 X 25

8-speed compact versus 9-speed triple crankset, and a 32 versus 25 largest sprocket. 

Is where you live relatively flat or hilly? 

Regarding the commute, do you have somewhere safe to lock the bike? If not, I assume the Spesh would be more of a thief magnet than the B'Twin.

Others know more about the components than me, so I'll let them expand...

 

Thank you for the input!!

 

I live in Singapore so it's mostly rather flat.  As for safety i will probably bring my bike back home when i'm not using it, and wouldn't leave it hanging around outside for too long.

Avatar
Frank_Ma [4 posts] 1 week ago
0 likes
kil0ran wrote:

520 is a good practical frame - space for mudguards and rack I believe. Just check its the whole Sora group from your store - often the manufacturers mix and match. For example, Decathlon often use their own brakes rather than Shimano one. Not necessarily a bad thing but useful if you want to compare the relative value of two bikes.

Spesh have a reputation for supplying heavy wheels that don't match the quality of the frame. If mudguards are important check that the frame will take them. 

Thank you!!

I don't think i will be attaching mudguards, but i do agree that 520 is more practical since you can attach a rack or panniers. 

 

Avatar
jterrier [104 posts] 1 week ago
2 likes

As it is a beginner bike and so you may find in a year that your taste changes anyway.... Go for the btwin. Every time. The argument for buying the specialized and upgrading it doesnt stand up as it will still only be a bargain basement specialized.

Avatar
don simon [1026 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

I'd agree with your mates and go for a better frame as components will be upgraded. Unfortunately it's a Specialized, I won't be riding it though.

It might still be a bargain basement bike after an upgrade, but as you get more into cycling its duties will change.

My bargain basement Ribble frame is now the singlespeed town bike, having previously lived life as replacement frame for the 1st bike, been relegated to winter bike and sat in the hall doing nothing. Even if you sell it, you'll get something for it.

You can, of course, upgrade the Decathlon jobbie too- which would be my choice simply based on brand.

Avatar
Roadie_john [55 posts] 1 week ago
1 like

Either will be fine. Go for the one that fits you best.