Blitz Probe Cycling


“I don’t normally post pictures of bikes. I’m not sure why, I just never really have. I will make an exception in this case, because: ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
1.) It shows @howlingfauna in a rare moment of high altitude induced near collapse, and… ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
2.) I love this @rodeolabs Trail Donkey. This bike has changed the way I live as a bike rider. I actively seek out anything that isn’t pavement - dirt roads, trails, roads that only exist on a map, roads that might have once existed, but clearly haven’t in at least 50 years. Anything. Everything. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I can hardly contain @ashleygruber’s excitement when it comes to riding dirt now. She gets mad at me if we do too many road rides or ride too much pavement in general. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I’ve never ridden a bike that has changed my bike riding life as much as this has - the places I’ve ridden (and walked), the people I’ve met, the rides we’ve shared. It sounds silly, but I don’t know if I can give a bike higher praise than that. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I am NOT trying to sell the world on gravel bikes. They’re not for everyone. Mountain bikes are AMAZING, motos are pretty cool in the Colorado High Country, road bikes rock too. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
For me though, this is my jam. This is where I want to be in ten years - bye pavement, bye cars, bye angry people who entertain thoughts of killing me, bye people looking at their phones who don’t even know I’m there. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Hello, open road. Hello, tiny trail I probably should ride a mountain bike on. Hello, steep, brutally hard, but oddly satisfying climb. Hello, wild descent. Hello, new places. Hello, four wide on a road no one ever uses. Hello, fun. That’s why I ride. I ride because I want to go outside, hang out with friends, do something a bit silly, get super tired, and have a bunch of fun doing it.”


Today’s ride. (doesn’t include the ride to and from).


Well that made me feel lazy…


Oh you “■■■■■■” Ozzies, i have to tell you something very important!
I have finished the tour around your tiny little dropbear-infested island. Its been 21.500 km and 8 months from Gold Coast to Gold Coast.
You crazy people made my staying absolutely perfect and i have never experienced such hospitality and specially generosity anywhere else in the world and trust me i had cycled through more than 70 countries. Australia simply became my home and i had not a single bad experience!
The route was basically from Gold Coast - Brisbane - Atherton - Cooktown - Lakefield Park - Musgrave rh - Dixies - Normanton - Lawn Hill - Doomadgee - Hells Gate - Borroloolla - Roper Bar - Mataranka - Kakadu - Darwin - Lichfield - Katherine - Kanunurra - Fitzroy Crossing - Tunnel Creek - Derby - Broome - Karijini - Coral Bay - Perth - Munda Biddi - Albany - Esperance - ■■■■■■ Nullabor - Ayr penninsula - Port Augusta - Blinman and Mawson trail - Kangaroo island - Hamilton and Grampians - Melbourne - Tasmania - Mt. Hotham - Omeo - (Mt. Pinnibar ■■■■■■ hell!!!) - Thredbo - Canberra - Blue Mountains - Kempsey - Ebor - Casino and Gold Coast… with many crazy “shortcuts” and mantadory detours.
All these kms done selfpowered. Never used any public transport (except mantadory ferries) and i refused (and later cried) all lift offers.
So, thanx for all i had really good time and 3 flat tyres! :slight_smile:

(My favourite quote that i will remember forever will be from that corrugated deep sand hell nearby Roper bar when a car stopped and the guy said: “I am not gonna ask you why you do that but before you die drink this beer!”)


Anyone else here have a Polar V650 that won’t upload or sync anyone? Stopped uploading a few months ago. Threatens to sync and then tells me to F off.
Still works on the ride but annoying that I can’t log my rides, unimpressive as they are (30 treacle slow ks tops now I’ve got my teeth well and truly into my 7th decade).


So how’s this for a weekend?

Sat: FYXO Gravel Camp Rubicon - setup and do a few practice rides

Sat night - Milan San Remo

Sun: FYXO Gravel ride - packup
Sun arvo/evening: go to nearest pub/club - Bombers smash GWS



So, to borrow a phrase from Chef: I need to run my ■■■ around the block a few times. It’s fair to say I detest exercise. I also detest travelling to work. My theory is that I might as well kill two birds with one stone by combining the two.

Looking for a road bike and my budget is somewhere from $700 - $1000 (if an exceptional deal pops up). So, I guess maybe that’s “serious entry level” or something.

I think I’ve narrowed it down to a particular brand, Reid. They seem to have mixed reviews but from what I can see they are using gear that would pushes other brands well above my budget with equivalent kit fitted.

I’m looking at the Falco Sport: []or Falco Elite:, around $750 and $950 respectively.

The major difference as far as I can tell is the Shimano Tiagra 4700 on the Sport versus the 105 5800 on the Elite. Though, considering the last bike I owned was a $149 jobby from KMart, I may be hard pressed to notice the difference.

Can somebody please tell me what to buy? Happy to hear any other suggestions.

Thanks Blitz.


if you get something cheap and you like cycling you will want to upgrade it.
I have a shimano 105 cannondale Caad 10 which i use for triathlons and commutes cheaper end of the spectrum but does the job was around $1500 a few years ago. ANd have only spent extra $$ on wheels and clip on aero bars for triathlons
my first bike was just a bottom range le tour de france yellow Jersey bike form the US $200 + $100 shipping. It was a piece of ■■■■ heavy and i ended up upgrading the wheels, tyres,tubes seat post, and was changing the handlebars, but nor sure if it wort persisting with now.

what your suggesting sounds ok. but you could probably get a pretty good deal on a second hand bike if you know your size.
dont get something too cheap as you may end up with more problems, flat tyres etc.


A “road bike” might not even be the best option for you (but this does not mean “buy a hybrid” either - I hate those things).

How far are you going to ride on these exercise / commute excursions? Are there any hills involved? Do you need to carry anything? What bike paths are available around you or on your way to work and what is traffic like? What are local surfaces like - e.g. paved, bumpy, rubbish on the road? Have you ever ridden with drop bars before? Will you be riding solo or do you plan to join a group?



Yep, all things I have considered briefly.

So, in rough order:

It’s about a 10k ride each way. Relatively flat. Minimal requirements for carrying, a small light backback will do. Bike paths and reasonable bike lanes literally the whole way. (half of the ride is actually along the coast, it’s very pleasant). Traffic is quite light except for about a 1.5 K stretch on a moderately busy arterial road (but again, dedicated bike lane). Surfaces are good - very good. Haven’t ridden with drop bars since I was a teenager. Riding Solo.

My last bike was bog standard cheap “mountain bike” and I never found the upright nature of it comfortable at all, though granted with such a pile of crap it could have been a number of factors.


I don’t know what else is available in cheap new road bikes. However the cheaper Reid sport looks like a good option -

  1. I prefer grey colour to white.
  2. On the ride you describe you are only going to make 3 gear changes anyway, so Tiagra v 105 is largely irrelevant.
  3. Lowest ratio of 34 onto 32 will still get you up hills if you get lost and have to climb one.
  4. No hills and riding alone - so slightly more weight and lower tech spec is not going to be an issue, you don’t need to keep up with others.
  5. The biggest advantage of elite to me was the wheels and tyres, not the gears. But you could still do better. So keep $200 and upgrade wheels and tyres yourself.
  6. Reid/new bike service program is worth having if you can’t do your own mechanics, also stay away from 2nd hand till you learn to service bikes, change parts yourself.

Backpack - I hate them, uncomfortable and back gets sweaty which is not a good look for work. So I would prefer bike with lugs, drilled crown for racks which Reid don’t have. Alternatively you can pick up cheap bike packing bags from alixepress. If you can’t leave your bike somewhere safe at work racks are usually a better option, than frame or seat bags.
Wheels / tyres: For riding you will do I suggest wider rims and tyres. Also better puncture protection on the tyres. Running wider tyres, on slightly lower pressure, gives more stability, better handling and more comfort. So worth asking Reid what is widest tyre their bike will fit - good to be at least 28mm.
Pedals: Flats so you can’t clip in, but most bikes supplied without pedals so no biggie. Upgrade them yourself.
Brakes: Callipers not Discs. Discs are a lot safer particularly in city where anything can suddenly appear in front of you.

As an alternative - look at something like this.
I expect you will find them under a $1,000 as the season ends and shops want to get rid of stock.
Cons: It is steel - so probably 3kg heavier.
Pros: disk brakes!! wider rims, wider tyres, lots of lugs to attach racks and mudguards.

Just depends on whether you want a racing type road bike or a travelling type road bike.


Racks + pannier bag for me. And a comfortable bike with wide tyres. Anything to reduce the possibility of a flat.

If you like drop bars a “gravel bike” might fit the build, and they usually are set up to be able to take racks etc if you want them.


Thanks gents… some things to think about in there, for sure.

@Kay_Eff_See, The tyres in particular was something I had been thinking about but forgot to mention. I’ll definitely check the specs for how wide I can go.

The Oppy was actually one of the first ones I looked at, and while it may well be more what suits me, the Reid bikes just seem (on the surface) to give you more bank for buck than almost any other brand. As you say though, If I’m not going to ride in a way that uses that bang, then it’s somewhat irrelevant…

Though I do fear catching the cycling bug if I actually buy something half decent and then turning in to one of “you people”… :slight_smile:


If you become one of “you people” then it doesn’t really matter what you buy because you’ll have 3 bikes by Christmas. Road bike (read “not an ounce wasted”, all weather commuter (mud guards etc, possibly single speed) and pub bike (no one would possibly bother stealing that)


But back to the topic, does work have facilities for change/shower? That can change the equation. (Personally for commuting if you can eliminate the need to change you’re saving yourself a heap of hassle and having to carry stuff. But of course that’s not always practical.


They do. I’m thinking I’ll just store my professional threads here and wear cycling attire (within reason, as in my current shape in full lycra getup would resemble a condom stuffed with walnuts).


I preferred the Grey as well :slight_smile:

this polygon one isnt too bad for a entry level bike as well

I have a kathmandu Mirage 15L mountain bike back pack. which i use for my rides too from work.


I’ve been riding to work every day for 5 years I guess. I use a backpack, but can understand why people hate them. Panniers can be a pain too, so largely it’s a personal choice.
I figure your riding 10 km, it’s no more than 20-25m anyway.
Reid are fine, the bike you’ve selected is perfectly ok.
Tiagra has come a long way and is absolutely fine for your purpose.
If you can get 28mm tyres on it, you’ll be right.
Look to see if you can get mud guards on if you intend to ride when it’s a little wet. Although you can always use an ■■■-saver (I do on my road bike).


Eventually… I’m allowing a few breather stops initially. I’m about as fit as 2017 Franga at the moment.

Thanks all, some useful feedback here. I’m currently leaning toward the Falco sport but will keep researching hunting for a couple of days. I mean, I’d only be working otherwise.


I had my bike (Solomo) shipped over from China when l came back in January. Recently l went to put it back together for a little toodling around the local area, only to find it has been stolen, from a shed at the back of the house, where l am staying. All l have left are the pedals. Damn! It will be a while before l get another bike.


Might be overestimating it. Could easily be 45m or more I reckon allowing for all the variables. (30kph is a pretty high bar starting from scratch, especially with traffic lights involved)