Biking is not that common in Egypt among adults, but sure it's booming. That's why some experienced bikers decided to write this page. To save time and help promote the idea to a wider audience in the Club of SaharaSafaris and beyond.
My Beloved Orbea Dakar 2010... 2500 km old :)
One's budget to buy a new bicycle is important, but here we will outline the basics and leave you to decide.
- Prices: good bikes can start from from 1500LE all the way to 8000.
- Types:basically, there are four types of bikes, Mountain, Race, City, and Hybrid.A mountain bike is for mountains, a race is for race, a City is for city, and hybrid is for both. easy.. right? :)- A mountain is more durable, can resist wild terrains, have front only or front and real suspension, have wider tyres which means more greb of the terrin.
- A race is the one with ultra light/slim body, ultra thin rim and tyres. that means light weight and less resistance to the road, in common language, more speed. However, you'll feel every tiny winy pump or stone on the road in your mmm.... body!
- City bike is ,as the name emplies, for paved roads of a city. It's the one in between race and mountain, it's lighter than mountain, with no suspension and don't have the same straight handlebar like that of mountains'. It has stronger rim/body, and wider tyres than race. That means it's faster than mountain, stronger than race.
- A hybrid is something even more in between mountain and city. However, i can't find a clear definition for it. they have the same straight handlebar of mountain, and might have front suspension, but with tyres as thin as the roads'.
Sure you don't care for such theories... let's get practical :DIn Egypt, you have 3 kind of common activities, offroading at Wadi Degla, commuting in the city, and travelling.If you'll go off roading get a mountain, if you'll go commuting get a city, if you'll go travelling get a race! simple one.. huhIf you are not sure exactly what you'll be doing, or will be doing a mix of these, get a mountain.At least you can anytime change its tyres to more thin ones and get more speed, and change the tyres back when you'll go offroading. Anyways Cairo's roads are more like off roading.. right? :D
- Frames:The lighter the better, the acceptable quality at good prices will be made of aluminium alloy. some high end bikes are made of carbon, but i'm not sure if those are even available in Egypt :D
- Brakes:Two main types of brakes, rubber V brakes and disc brakes. V brakes are the old ones we had in our childhood bikes.
Disc brakes are like those of a car, a disc at the centre of the wheel, and pads holding the disc when breaks are applied. It's more reliable with muds. disc brakes can be triggered by wire or by oil (hydraulically)
- Suspension:Suspension makes a ride enjoyable, and is essential for offroading. a bike can have a front suspension (Hard tail bikes) or both fron and rear suspension (soft tail bikes) the front suspension is in the front fork, and the rear is usually beneath the seat.Suspension can be as simple as a spring piston, or can be oil piston (hydraulic), or air piston (pneumatic). This is the same order of prices and quality as well (cheaper to more expensive, and low quality to better quality)
The best type of suspensions are those that can be controlled on/off. Cause for some technical reasons, the suspension being on wastes some of your energy contracting and expanding the suspension.
Spring front suspension
- Gear box:The most important part of a bike, the part that goes all round and round with gears shifting up and down all the way. This is the part that can make your ride enjoyable or you'll finish your ride with curses and frustration!The best brand of Gear boxes is Shimano, it's used in most of the bikes actually, even bikes that have their own brands are using Shimano. Enough for you to know that it's a Japanese company :). Shimano has a bunch of gear boxes' models, which i'm not an expert of, so you'll have to do your own research comparing the models on the internet.
- What are the available brands in egypt?The info i have is mainly about the mountain ones. and the info i'll introduce might be old, or might change anytime, but by now you should have the basics to do your own market research.I'll talk first about my own bike, The Orbea Dakar. Orbea is brand, and Dakar is the model. Orbea is spanish designer company, and chinease made bikes, although they say that starting 2011 models, they are spain made. http://www.orbrea.com/This brand, and specially this model is booming in Egypt. I'll just let you know that back in 2010, the first model Dakar 2010 was introduced to Egypt at a price of 1500 LE. Dakar 2012 is now around 2700! also there are a couple of other Orbea models that penetrated the market that are better and more expensive than Dakar. Dakar is considered a low end brand of Orbea.
Orbea Dakar 2012
Gitane: it's a french brand, more expensive than Orbea, i think it's starting from 4000 L.E.
Peugeot: they use to be heavier than Gitane and Orbea, but i'm not sure about the new models. price wise, they are in between Orbea and Gitane.However, i believe Orbea has more number of models in the market, they have a couple of race bikes as well, the cheapest is the Aqua (around 5000LE). And actually they have better support and spare parts' availability
- Where to buy?There are two main sellers in Egypt, Abo El Goukh (Yes, it is the same one you bought your first bike from ;) ) and Bisceletta. Abo El Gouhk is Orbea's official seller in Egypt. they have a lot of branches, the main branch that is the official seller is the one at gomhorya st. near Ramsis Sq., they call it there "El Mo'assasa" and it's at second floor shop to the right if you coming from Ramsis. Another branch is the one directly in front of it, in a corridor off Gomhorya St. named "Goukho 2000" and the third is "Abo El Goukh Today" at Roshdy st. downtown. This one has even a couple of other brands, Tubro, Fomas. They look like they have good quality (light weight, shimano gearbox) and cheaper than orbea, but less known brands in the Egyptian market, anyways, i bought my Orbea when it was just in the market anybody ever heard of it. But what i did is that i searched the internet, and found they have their name in the international market. Goukh 2000 has a brand called Xtasy. http://www.xtasybike.com/en/index.shtml. It's designed in Germany and is around 1900LE