Types of Bicycles

Why do we have so many varieties of bikes? So we can optimize the riding for you!

Road Racing Bikes

These bikes are built for speed. At the high end, they are the same bicycles used by pro tour teams. Prices start around $1500 for an aluminum frame and Shimano 105 componentry, and end up close to five digits for some of the pro models. These bikes usually have standard 39/53 chainrings and a short wheelbase with very quick handling.

Sport Road Bikes

These are mellower cousins of the road racing bikes. The angles are a little more relaxed, the tire clearance a little greater. Many carbon framed bikes are optimized for shock absorbance. The Raleigh men's version is named "Revenio", the women's is the "Capri". The Giant men's are the Defy series. The women's are the Avail series. The Advanced carbon fiber bikes are now coming with disc brakes. Most come with compact (34/50) cranksets. Entry level bikes are around $600, the upper end $8000.

Touring Bikes

Touring bikes have a long wheelbase, clearance for larger (at least 700x35) tires, and a triple crank with low gears. They are designed for hauling a load over long distances. Several companies offer frames that with divide in two parts with standard S&S couplers, allowing a bike to be taken on an airplane without paying outrageous fees.

Cyclocross Bikes

Cyclocross bikes were originally designed to race off road through the Belgian mud in the middle of the winter. These knobby tired road bikes actually make great commuter bikes, and with a bit of modification can serve well for touring.

Gravel Grinders

These are related to the cyclocross and touring bikes, 700x33 to 45 semi-knobby tires and wide ranging gears for those rides that are a mixture of pavement and dirt. Check out these Raeigh bikes:http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes-road-gravel-tamland, and these: http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes-road-gravel-willard

Hybrid and Comfort Bikes

These bikes are our entry level commuter bikes. Their defining charateristic is a very upright riding position. They have multi purpose tires, and will work reasonably well on dirt roads as well as on asphalt. Hybrids have a larger diameter thinner wheel and tire, similar to touring bikes. Comfort bikes have a fatter 26 inch semi smooth mountain bike tire.

Flat Bar Road Bikes

These bikes are a step up from hybrid bikes, much lighter and faster. They are actually similar to touring and cross bikes, but with flat bar controls. They can be used for touring, and make great commuting bikes when equiped with a rack and lights.

Entry Level Mountain Bikes

These bikes, from $300 to $500, are really multi purpose bikes. They work for commuting, and are OK for light mountain bike riding.

Mid-Range Mountain Bikes

At prices from $500 to $800, these are the minimum bike to get if you actually want to ride off road. They have lighter frames and much more durable parts.

High End Hardtail Mountain Bikes

These bikes are made for racing, They're light and fast and have no rear suspension.

Dual Suspension Mountain Bikes

These bikes start around $1400. They have front and rear shock absorbers. The technology has advanced tremendously. Designers have improved the bikes' efficiency so they pedal as well as a hardtail (a bike without rear suspension). They weigh a bit more, and cost a bit more than a hardtail.


These are a newer group of mountain bikes. They use a 700c road rim with a 2"+ tire, to give an outside wheel diameter of about 29 inches, hence the name "29er". The larger diameter wheel tends to roll more easily over obstacles. These may not be the bike of choice for smaller riders, but riders 6 ft+ love them.

Single Speed and Fixed Gear

We have single speed mountain bikes for the minimalist off-road crowd and fixed gear road bikes for track racers, winter training or purists. Some are incredibly light.

Youth Bikes

Bikes abound for younger riders. There are 12" wheeled bikes for the 3 to 5 year olds, 16" wheeled bikes for 4 to 7 year olds, 20" wheeled bikes for 6 to 9 year olds, and 24" wheeled bikes for 9 to 12 year olds.

Holly on her pink bike

BMX Bikes

Whether you are into BMX racing, dirt jumping, street riding, X-games style jumping or freestyle we have the bike for you. These bikes have their own sophisticated scene and are popular with enthusiasts from about 10 into full adulthood. While different frame sizes exist and can be important, ultimately it is all about exploring the high performance possibilities of a 20" wheel.