CruX as only bike

I was thinking about getting a Tarmac or Allez, but I live in Philly and there are some great trails around me. I still want to go fast on the road, but I don’t race and I always just ride alone for the cardio so I’m fit on my motocross bike. Would I be happy with the CruX, assuming I ride 70 percent on the road and 30 on trails?


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Yes you’ll be on a bike.

Ok, my calculation is only slightly more complex than that. CX bikes are between 85 and 90% road bikes. The type of “trails” you’re talking about really makes a difference, but if you think you can take a crack at those trails on 33s, go for it. If you need more rubber, just throw on a little meatier tires. The one drawback I see, is that the Crux comes with 1x for the “attainable” bikes. 1x doesn’t hugely bother me in Flatlandia, but I’ve definitely noticed that a 40 front and 11 rear isn’t quite enough for a descent or two we do have… I’d be pissed to spin out every time I went down a hill you can probably find on your local rides…

The 1x takes versatility out of the CX bike, which, in my opinion (but not SRAM’s, apparently) is where CX bikes really should excel.

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So yeah, agreeing here. I have a Cruz and an allez, and the Crux is great. If anything it feels a little nicer on steep climbs than the allez. Buut… The stock gearing spins out pretty easily. I would say anything over about 30 and you can’t pedal. I’m in a mountainous area, and for that reason I’m on the allez for almost all my road rides. Super comfy/capable frame on the Crux though.

The biggest issue I see with the Crux or most other CX bikes is they usually are 1x drivetrain now. May work for some road riders, but the range or gear steps could be limiting vs a road 2x setup.


Well that’s good to hear it still is fast on pavement. My main concern was it just feeling slow. Second is the 1x. I don’t live in a super mountainous region and I don’t mind not bombing down hills. I guess 30 mph is a reasonable top speed to trade for being able to explore the trails around Philly. Do many people covert it to a 2x or go with a larger front sprocket?

Thanks for all the feedback!

Also, you could put some 28/32 gp5000tl on the tubeless wheels that come stock and I’d reckon feel just about as fast as any other bike on the road!

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Wouldn’t you want more a gravel bike like the Diverge? This would do well on gravel, single track and road, the geometry would be a bit more slack than a CX bike (less twitchy), would be a more laid back fit for comfort.

In my limited experience riding CX bikes (never a Crux) they do really well at slow speeds and tight corners for CX racing in conditions like grass, mud, dirt. They get out of their element on road and faster trails. Can they do it? Sure, but I think you have better options out there.

I have a Crux and Tarmac, the Crux is a great bike and I have almost the same position on both bikes, handbars are slightly higher on the Crux is the only difference. For a do it all bike, I’d probably go for the new Diverge, being able to run wider tires or 650B wheels and the downtube storage have me wanting that bike

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As long as you’re solo, it won’t be slow on the flats, unless you’re a >28mph kind of guy. Its the descents that would get to me in Philly. Imagine bombing out of Manny-skunk and not having the gearing to stay on top of it.


You’d be moderately more likely to get a 2x that way, but depending on the trails, the longer wheel base of the diverge might be a hindrance.

Good point - terrain matters! I live in the PNW where trails tend to lead to more MTB type riding (up, down and rocky), and I do not race CX.

It depends what speed you want to ride. The 40t sucks on the pavement. I use my Crux mostly on the road and put a 50t on it with 11-28 cassette and 28 conti 5000. Huge difference especially when out of the saddle. Just look at a gear calculator and you can see the rpm the 40t gets you. I’m getting a tarmac sl7 in a couple weeks so I can put the crux back to 40t for off-road riding again. It really depends what type of rider you are. If you love going super fast and like to ride with fast groups I wouldnt bother. Really no such thing as a do it all bike. Every bike is specific for certain things. They just all happen to roll so people take them anywhere but it doesn’t mean they should. Also I’m in Florida so no descents just coastal headwind and tailwind.

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Just get 2 bikes. The new sl7 Tarmac and the New epic. The trail will be comfy and fun and the roads will be smooth and fast.

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I wish! I ride motocross as well, and that ain’t cheap, so adding two bikes is a bit much. I’m leaning towards just getting a Tarmac and focusing on road. I’m just envious of those long dirt roads with no cars.

I think you will find the CX bike more than capable on pavement.

I’ve used my Focus Mares CX bike for everything the last few years. CX races, gravel, dirt trails, crits, fast group rides. It’s been absolutely fine.

Recently I came into a Trek Emonda. I just recently finished getting it built up. I have a forest preserve road here, that is actually used for practice crits in the spring. I use it for TR workouts outdoors. I was curious about the speed difference, so I compared average speeds during sweet spot intervals. At the same power, the Emonda was 0.5mph faster at 260 watts. I should also add the Emonda had aero shaped drop bars, and was on tubeless GP5000s, whearas the CX bike had tubes (latex). So I would say the difference between the bikes was just a couple tenths of a mph, if that. I wouldnnot be shocked if rolling resistance and bar shape comprised nearly the entire difference of 0.5 mph.


Originally we put the Schwable g one all round 35s on the bike so I could use it for road and dirt roads. But getting the dirt/mud all over drive train trashes your chain. I’m sure you know all about that So then it’s less efficient out on the road and you need to replace chains more often. The resistance from soft sand is a really good workout though. Maybe get a used giant TCX for fast dirt and the Tarmac for road. Anyways I tried the multi use thing and it just doesn’t work. And with your racing motocross your brain is wired to go faster so just get the right bike for the right application.

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We did a group ride and a guy on a TT bike jumped in while I was on my tcx. I got dropped. I was putting out 350w to go 25-26 mph to stay in the draft. My hr got to 185 and I said forget it. I would say normally this would be like 250w on the crux with 28s. And my buddy was doing 200w on an allez sprint. I only weigh 160. Up to 22mph any bike will work but after that all the marginal gains really do start to matter.

I too have a Crux and Tarmac. For general riding I could live with the Crux, with 28 or 32mm tubeless road tires it’s a joy to ride in almost all scenarios. I still use my Tarmac for hill rides and road races, but really wouldn’t hesitate to ride the Crux in either case.

If I had to pick one bike to keep it would be my Crux. I put an XD driver on the rear freehub to use the SRAM 10-42 cassette, and I switch between two chainrings depending on the gearing I want (38 for hills and chill riding, 42 for road-like gear ratios).


If you want to ride paved and unpaved roads, look for a gravel bike. With the emergence of gravel bikes, cross bikes have become more race specific. If you love riding muddy less-than singletrack through the woods and fields, go for a cross bike.

A lot depends on you as a rider too. You can ride nearly every bike on every terrain, but the style changes. Some people don’t mind ambling along on a full suss on the road. You can take a road bike on gravel and trails, but you need to be more careful and get off now and then. Cross riders will love the feel of their cross bikes on all terrain (I know, I’m one!), but pure road riders will moan about the lack of top speed.

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