jvjr9902 asked in SportsCycling · 1 decade ago


I am going to buy a new or used bike but cant decide between a road bike or cyclocross. Im not planning on joining any road bike club anytime soon so its going to be mainly riding by myself. I will mainly use it for going to the store or video place and also for weekend ride.Most of the time the roads here in California are being repaired so I will be encountering roads with potholes, humps, steel plates,gravel.Is a road bike suitable for this kind of road or a cyclocross would be better? I sold my mountain bike because I want a bike with more speed.Thanks for all your suggestions.

6 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I think you answered your own question already by describing road problems. Go with cyclocross bike and I am sure you will be happy.

    Road bikes are built very well now and very likely can withstand much more than you will throw at them, but having that extra piece of mind that your bike was designed to take a beating is a good thing.

    The tires that come stock with those bikes will be knobby but if you want more speed (less rolling resistance) change them to Armadillo from Specialized (puncture resistant tires, great product).

    Lastly, I encourage you to either get the bike from a local bike shop that can size you (sizing is complex in biking) or learn about sizing on your own and buy a used bike that fits you. Having a bike that fits you is very important, you can find sizing info here: http://www.sheldonbrown.com/frame-sizing.html

    Good luck,


    P.S. If you ever plan to ride in the rain, it is easier to install fenders on cyclocross bikes because they have more clearance.

    Source(s): Avid cyclist.
  • 4 years ago

    If you're just doing it for fun, your road bike should work adequately. What you need to do is change out the wheelset for something a little hardier, and put some cyclocross knobbies on your wheels (remember that they still have to fit in your frame, with a bit of clearance). Also a good idea is to exchange your dual- or single-pivot road brakes for some good, old-fashioned cantilever brakes; the cantis have a lot more clearance for mud and such. You may want to throw on a smaller crankset too. And finally, keep that bike clean; thoroughly wash it after every ride. Nothing breaks a bike faster than mud and grit riding around its frame and components. Pretty much the only difference between converted road bikes and dedicated CX bikes is the geometry; CX bikes have a bit more relaxed geometry, and a bit more clearance between the two sides of the fork and the two sides of the chain and seat stays.

  • 1 decade ago

    A standard road bike can deal pretty well with most road obstacles. You obviously don't want to crash into too many potholes on either a road bike or a cross bike. There aren't too many differences between the two styles -- the road bike will have a lower center of gravity and handle a bit quicker, but the controls are the same and your position will be similar. You can run fatter tires on a cross bike. I'd keep my eyes peeled for both and see what deals you find.

  • lftr67
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Cross bikes are not built for the road. They are built for a very specific kind of racing/riding with a lower bottom bracket and different geometry that translates into clunky, squirelly handling on the road.

    A road bike will do fine on even the worst paved roads and most can handle unpaved roads as well. The key elements are your wheels and tires. There are many high spoke count wheel sets out there that might weigh a little more but will withstand just about anything. Pair those with a set of Gatorskin tires or something similar and you'll be set.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • Chef
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    Go ride a few. There are plenty of people that use a cross bike for daily commuting and weekend rides. Some take racks (not many road bikes do) and all can handle a larger variety of tires than road bikes. Get what feels best to you.

  • 1 decade ago


Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.