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Which should I go for?

GT Grade Carbon 105 - http://www.wiggle.co.uk/gt-grade-carbon-105-2017-adventure-road-bike/ 

  • Number of gears: 22
  • Front Axle Type: Maxle 15mm
  • Cable Routing: Internal & External Mix
  • Model Year: 2017
  • Frame: GT EnduRoad Carbon Frame and fork, Disc specific Triple Triangle with Tapered Headtube.
  • Fork Material: Carbon
  • Fork: GT full carbon fork with Tapered steerer and 15mm thru axle
  • Steerer: Tapered
  • Bottle Cage Mounts: Double
  • Front Derailleur Mount: Band On
  • Dropouts: Replaceable Rear Derailleur Hanger
  • Wheel Size: 700c (622)
  • Wheelset: formula hubs laced to Stans no tubes Radler rims
  • Groupset Manufacturer: Shimano
  • Brake Levers/Gear Shifters: Shimano 105
  • Front Derailleur: Shimano 105
  • Rear Derailleur: Shimano 105
  • Brake Type: Hydraulic Disc Brake
  • Brakes: Shimano RS505
  • Brake Callipers: Shimano RS505 Hydraulic Disc with Shimano Ice-Tech 160mm rotor
  • Chainset type: Compact
  • Chainset: Shimano 105
  • Chainring Size: 52 Tooth, 36 Tooth
  • Chain: KMC X11
  • Cassette: Shimano 11-speed, 11-32T
  • Cassette Range: 11-32 Tooth
  • Handlebars: GT Drop tune super light bars
  • Bar Tape/Grips: Cork
  • Stem: GT 3D forged alloy
  • Seat Post: GT Carbon
  • Saddle: Fizik Monte MG
  • Tyres: Clement Strada Ush 700x32c
  • Pedals: Supplied with basic flat pedals
  • Warranty: "Lifetime frame warranty, 12 month parts warranty"

 

Boardman Pro Carbon Mens Road Bike - 2017 https://www.cyclerepublic.com/boardman-pro-carbon-mens-road-bike-2017.html

  • Number of Gears 22
  • Frame C7 full carbon monocoque disc
  • Forks Full carbon with tapered steerer
  • Gear Shifters Shimano 105, 2x11 speed
  • Rear Mech Shimano 105, 11 speed
  • Front Mech Shimano 105, 2 speed
  • Chainset FSA Gossamer Pro, 52-36T
  • Cassette / Freewheel No
  • Chain KMC X11, 11 speed
  • Bottom Bracket FSA BB-PF30
  • Pedals Test Ride pedals with toe clips
  • Brake Type Hydraulic Disc Brakes
  • Front Brake Shimano BRR-S505 disc brake, 160mm rotor
  • Rear Brake Shimano BRR-S505 disc brake, 160mm rotor
  • Wheel Size 700c
  • Hubs Boardman
  • Rims Boardman aero profile, 28/32 hole
  • Tyre Size 700 x 25c
  • Tyres Vittoria Zaffiro Pro, Folding
  • Handlebars Boardman alloy drop bar, 51.5cm frame - 400mm wide / 53cm frame - 420mm wide / 55.5cm & 57.5cm - 440mm wide
  • Stem Boardman alloy, 31.8mm, 51.5cm frame - 90mm / 53cm frame - 100mm / 55.5cm frame - 110mm / 57.5cm frame - 120mm
  • Grips No
  • Headset FSA Orbit C-40 1-1/8" ACB top , 1.5" Industrial sealed bottom, Standard 15mm top cover
  • Saddle Prologo Nago Evo
  • Seatpost Boardman UD carbon, 31.6mm

 

Main purpose will be an 18 mile round trip daily commute to work.

Other considerations -

Want to go on rides with my son on his mtb, parks, trails, canal paths etc. Nothing too scary (hes 10).

I can get a further 15% off the Boardman.

 

I'm just starting out on my road bike adventure so I'd welcome so more experienced eyes looking over the specs and commenting on any differences or benefits? The grade seems to offer me more versatility but will be a tad more expensive and I'm wondering if the Boardman would be better for road riding the commute.

14 comments

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peted76 [1143 posts] 8 months ago
1 like

They are both good bikes. 

I'd say go with the Boardman, whack some 28mm's on for now and plan to put some better wheels (£200-£300) with some tubeless tyres on at a later date..  for less punctures and more offroad adventures.

 

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Canyon48 [1055 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

Both good and VERY little between them.

Personally, I'd go with the GT as it has a 105 crank and tubeless rims.

There really is very little separating them though! Which one do you think looks better, that might be the deciding factor  10

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ClubSmed [701 posts] 8 months ago
1 like

If the main purpose of the bike is the 18 mile commute would you not be better off going for a bike with mounts for a pannier rack? I would find an 18 mile commute with a rucksack very uncomfortable.

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alansmurphy [1869 posts] 8 months ago
4 likes

Neither, based on:

 

"I'm just starting out on my road bike adventure"

 

"Want to go on rides with my son on his mtb, parks, trails, canal paths etc."

 

Try this:

 

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/gt-grade-al-105-2017-adventure-road-bike/

 

I really don't think you need a full carbon bike and for the rigours of commuting and rough (off) roads the extra weight of the Alu with Carbon forks should be considered a bonus rather than a negative. I have a Cannondale at £1,800 full carbon with 105 as my 'best' bike and wanted a wet weather bike to add mud guards, have disc brakes etc. and can honestly say I was amazed at how close performance was between the two. It also means if you start becoming a lycra warrior in a few years time then you could relegate this to a winter/commute and go all out Carbon / Aero.

 

The only changes I'd consider on the GT are the tyres (though I am puncture free in 4 months), also the drops on the handlebars flay a little (quite wide at the bottom). If this is your first road bike it probably wont bother you at all, it's just a bit weird when you're used to a normal road bike.

 

If you're anywhere NW you're more than welcome to throw a leg over...

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kil0ran [1066 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

It depends on how important the off tarmac stuff is. You need decent clearance even for dry mud and the Grade is far more versatile than the Boardman. Boardman has racier handling which you don't want offroad where slacker head angle and longer wheelbase adds stability. I commuted last year on a bike with 32mm GravelKing SK tyres and they weren't significantly slower than 25mm GP 4Seasons - to the point I did Ride London on them. Quiet, fast rolling, planted handling, and they soaked up the bumps really well. Thing is you can always adapt a bike like the Grade for fast road use if you want (lighter wheels, slam the stem, skinnier tyres) but you can't go the end other way quite so easily, mainly because of clearance and geometry.

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CXR94Di2 [2198 posts] 8 months ago
3 likes

Any new bike that comes with "pressfit" bottom bracket, budget £80-100 to replace with either Hope, wheels manufacturing, Praxis works threaded Adaptor bottom bracket.

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Boatsie [230 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

Regardless of actual bike. Many years ago I bought a cheap road bike. Swapping the rear tire from the cheap 23 to a Kevlar 28 was my best savings. Tube costs etc... Zero punctures since and finally wearing through the front 23 I found a 28 on the front even more comfortable which translates to a higher trust level on front weight and hence more pounds of torque.

Keeping a little extra to skin the rear with a 28 might save yourself as a beginner/novice from rim wear and punctures.
I'm a big fan of size 28 tires. I've never had 1 puncture despite tree root paths, gutters, etc on my cheap wheel set.

My bad... 32s would be nice
Mate rides a 25 on his rear and he's quite happy. He avoids trails though.
I like the GT, I reckon the rear stays look sweet with their small triangle; seat post tube, toptube.
Looks like a fast commuter and with a 28 rear you get 2 front tyres

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mikeymustard [34 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes
alansmurphy wrote:

Neither, based on:

 

"I'm just starting out on my road bike adventure"

 

"Want to go on rides with my son on his mtb, parks, trails, canal paths etc."

 

Try this:

 

http://www.wiggle.co.uk/gt-grade-al-105-2017-adventure-road-bike/

 

I really don't think you need a full carbon bike .....

 

The only changes I'd consider on the GT are the tyres (though I am puncture free in 4 months), also the drops on the handlebars flay a little (quite wide at the bottom). If this is your first road bike it probably wont bother you at all, it's just a bit weird when you're used to a normal road bike.

 

If you're anywhere NW you're more than welcome to throw a leg over...

I agree, save yourself a few quid and go for the alu version.  By the time you've added guards and a rack/panniers (so much more comfy than 9 miles carrying a rucky) your not exactly down to racing weight!

The Clement are great tyres for commuting and a bit of off road, are the ones on the GT tubeless? If so, well worth running tubeless for commuting

 

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jterrier [210 posts] 8 months ago
1 like

I have a boardman and a carbon grade, oddly enough. Boardman bikes are nice; but the Grade is really quite special... Plus they are more sought after.

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jterrier [210 posts] 8 months ago
1 like

If you are near me (Berks/wilts border) you are welcome to take a look at my GT. It may even be for sale....

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mikeymustard [34 posts] 8 months ago
2 likes
jterrier wrote:

I have a boardman and a carbon grade, oddly enough. Boardman bikes are nice; but the Grade is really quite special... Plus they are more sought after.

jterrier wrote:

If you are near me (Berks/wilts border) you are welcome to take a look at my GT. It may even be for sale....

What a salesman! laugh

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John_S [66 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

Hi mart85,

 

With respect to your commute are you going to do it all year around in all weathers?  If so I'd recommend that you get yourself a bike that is capable of taking full size mudguards because it'll help to protect both you and the bike in winter.  Also how will you be carrying all of your stuff to work?  For example will you be using a rucksack?  Personally I hate wearing a rucksack when commuting especially in the summer when your back can get really sweaty (but maybe that's just me) and I find having a bag on my back really uncomfortable.  Therefore again I'd be looking at what mounts/ braze ons the frames that you're looking at have to make sure that you at least get something with a complete set of decent mounts so you have the option of fitting mudguards and racks.

 

I've not had time to look at the geometary of the two bikes but if the Boardman is a pure road machine then it might be a bit too aggressive with this being your first road bike and considering that you want to go off road.  I'd be considering bikes that are more the adventure/gravel/endurance/sportive (or whatever people are calling it these days) end of things rather than road/race machines becaue the geomatry will be more suited to off road and they're more likely to be able to take wider tyres.

 

I see that the Boardman comes with 25mm tyres and so I'm not sure how much clearance that frame has for wider tyres because for off road I'd want a minimum of 30s but ideally I'd want the ability to fit much wider if I could.  Some of the current adventure bracket bikes are now coming with 700c wheels for the road but the frame & geometary suited to taking 650b wheels and therefore much wider tyres for when you do go off road.

 

If you can I'd get along to your local bikes shops and see if they have any bikes that fit into the adventure/gravel typre bracket with frames capable of taking at least 32mm (or prefereably wider) to take account of your off road riding.  With this being your first road bike purchase I'd recommend trying as many as you can before you buy.  Also if you can buy from a LBS hopefully you'll be more likely to get help with setting it up & fit as well as support after buying with anything that needs adjusting etc. in terms of the set up.

 

Some of the types of bikes that might suit could sort of stradle the adventure, gravel, commuting, sportive, audax and even cyclocross brackets so you might be worth having a look through some of these lists for bikes and cross referening to see if appropriate bikes appeal to you.

http://road.cc/content/buyers-guide/217893-18-best-2018-gravel-adventure-bikes-—-super-versatile-bikes-are-home

 

http://road.cc/content/buyers-guide/230664-17-2018s-best-disc-brake-endurance-do-it-all-road-bikes

 

http://road.cc/content/feature/234024-roadcc-adventure-and-cyclocross-bike-year-2017-18

 

I'd take a look at British brand Fairlight.  They do two different frames, the Strael and the Faran, and the Faran could meet your needs.  Also they do proportional geometry offering two different versions of frame sizes to suit different body shapes/types and you can put your measurements into their website to get a guide to the bike frame size that you'd need.

http://road.cc/content/tech-news/210759-new-british-brand-fairlight-cycles-launches-two-steel-disc-equipped-road

 

https://fairlightcycles.com/faran/?v=79cba1185463

 

I really like the look of the Kona Roadhouse from this video:-

http://road.cc/content/feature/234835-six-best-steel-road-bikes-keeping-it-real-steel

http://road.cc/content/review/182237-kona-roadhouse

However unfortunately I think that since this review subsequent versions have gone up in price now.

But there is also the Kona Rove which inclides options of 650b wheel sizes.

http://road.cc/content/tech-news/227994-kona-goes-650b-2018-rove-adventure-bike-choice-steel-or-aluminium

 

Good luck finding the right bike for you.

John

 

 

 

 

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John_S [66 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

Following on from the above there is now a Kona Wheelhouse at a lower price point than the Roadhouse now that model has had a price increase.  Although the Wheelhouse has mehanical instead of hydraullic disc brakes.

http://www.konaworld.com/wheelhouse.cfm

The 2018 version is £1,800 but the 2017 version can be had for around £1,350 - £1,400

 

However if you've got enough cash you could consider treating yourself to a bike from Condor Cycles.   They have an adventure gravel bike called the Bivio :-

http://road.cc/content/tech-news/220170-condor-bivio-gravel-bike-bespoked

http://www.headsetpress.co.uk/condor-bivio-handmade-road-adventure/

https://roadcyclinguk.com/gear/condor-launch-bivio-gravel-steel-adventure-frame.html#BVfpOCEGyDi1FKsp.97

 

If you went for one normally they would be approximately £2,000 ish plus some depending on the spec of the build that you pick.

However at the moment Condor are currently selling this one for £1,450 if the 55cm frame size is right for you:-

https://www.condorcycles.com/products/condor-bivio-gravel-55cm-adventure-bike-2017-45

 

Happy hunting for your bike.

John

 

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Johnnyvee [150 posts] 8 months ago
0 likes

Personally I'd be inclined to go to a Halfords and try the nearest Boardman to the spec you're looking at that they have in and try any other bike shops nearby. You might not actually like either. Better to make an informed decision on your experiences and you'll ride it more.
If there's an Evans near you they will do test rides quite happily
If you've already done this please ignore.
Few years ago I was dead set on a cannondale CAADX. Tried it out - hated it.