Hotbunnycharlie wrote:I'm buying a bike on the cycle to work scheme and I'm torn between my love for the old school style of the Pashley, and the cheapness of the Raleigh.
I live in manchester, so it's pretty flat, except for a little hill outside of my house which I must climb up each day. So the five speed of the Pashley does make sense. On the other hand, I've heard that the Raleigh is light, so there are pros and cons.
What does everyone think? Is it worth spending more for a bike that you feel is durable, or, since I'm only just getting into cycling, should I just bite the bullet and get a cheaper raleigh to start me off?
thanks in advance folks!
It depends on what you are going to use the bike for. The Pashley Princess Sovereign is a superb version of the classic English Roadster-style of bicycle, usually referred to nowadays as a 'Dutch Bike' or a sit-up-and-beg bike. They are low maintenance (hub gears and full chaincase) bombproof and a lovely ride, albeit sedate. They are perfect for pootling around, and for short commutes of only a couple of miles. If this sounds like the usage you want out of a bike, then go for it. There is a reason why millions of Dutch cyclists
use this style of bike for comfortable urban commuting. See Copenhagen Cycle chic
on the web for further evidence.
However, you might be advised to get a second hand bike of the same style - for cheapness. I bought my wife a 1983 Raleigh Superbe for £80 on E-bay - equivalent to the Pashley Princess Classic.
As for the Raleigh Hybrid. It is a more adaptable type of bike. If you are tempted by more speed, and riding on bridleways, etc, then you are opening a huge can of worms, where the decision between which bike can be confusing or bewildering. The choice of hybrids on the market is extraordinary. You need to work out what might need from a bike. If you are just starting out, this, of course, can be guesswork. As the poster above hinted, dryly, most people who get the bug soon want something faster than they thought they'd need.
For my part, I commute a good distance on roads, and for that reason I needed a road bike with provision for racks and mudguards.