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  1. #1
    flatland
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    Cool Mercier Galaxy Tour review

    Last year I purchased a Mercier Galaxy Tour from BikesDirect. I am very pleased with my purchase. I wrote to BikesDirect with questions, and received very useful answers. I also like what they have in their FAQ.

    Others have mentioned problems with tubes that come with BikesDirect bikes. Both my original tubes blew out the first day. I haven't had another blowout, and no trouble with the stock tires.

    I modified my bike with upright moustache handlebars instead of the straight bars it came with. I dislike the "elbows-out" look of road riders using straight bars, and I think they give me palm paralysis, which had been a big problem for me on many different bikes. The brake cables are a little short for a full range of adjustment with the aftermarket handlebars. But my palms don't sting even after hours of riding, so I may be right about the advantage of slightly angled bars. Or maybe it is the curved carbon forks.

    The frame is semi-compact, meaning that one's toe will sometimes touch the front wheel, and it is hard to get saddlebags far enough back on a rack to avoid heels hitting. But it's not REALLY compact: one's toe touches only on the tightest, slowest turns. And I CAN get the saddlebags far enough back to miss my heels.

    The tilted top tube makes it a little clumsy to stand alongside the bike. It won't rest against your thigh as nicely as a standard "men's frame" with a horizontal top tube will. I thought having a dropped top tube would help me avoid getting hurt. It doesn't. It hits me just the same as a standard shape frame would. Perhaps I should have gotten a smaller size.

    Semi-compact also probably contributes to making this bike less stable than other hybrid and commuter bikes. I still can't ride it "no-hands". But I don't need to ride it no-hands, since my hands aren't stinging, and the quickness and responsiveness is a real joy. Just getting on this bike and riding away is a thrill. I love it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Mercier Galaxy Tour review-img-20120824-00127.jpg   Mercier Galaxy Tour review-img-20120824-00126.jpg  

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    If you can't ride it with no hands the compact design is not to blame. I own a compact design on a racing geometry, and I can ride it all day with no hands if I wanted to. Since the bike is new I would suspect the bikes trail to be not correct, this is a manufacture problem that will be inherent with those bikes and they won't correct it, it could be due to the fork, or the rear stays, or both. The only way to rule out the fork is to try a new one with a different rake, but since you don't have the need to ride with no hands it's not an issue so no need to bother.

    Congrats on your new bike and I hope you enjoy it for many years to come.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xk98yvozq1g
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvk63...eature=related
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=p92Stnnigjs
    "They don't do things that way anymore. This is the Age of Science Know-How, electronal marvels."

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Hi! Awesome review.

    I was wondering how it has fared in longer distanced rides. I'm planning to use this bike to commute to school which is approximately 2 miles one way and dip my feet into some cycling.

    Anyways, thanks for reading. Cheers.

  4. #4
    flatland
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    great but unusually touchy bike

    My typical leisure ride is 10-20 miles on the very flat, smooth Shining Sea Bikeway in Falmouth, MA. For that the bike is great. For a bumpy or gravelly road, for any dirt tracks or city curb-jumping, I'd suggest much fatter tires (which probably wouldn't fit this frame) and suspension (not cheap suspension, at least mid-range).

    Responding to my statement that I couldn't ride "no-hands", the previous poster, "Froze", suggests that the bike has an inherent problem with trail, the offset of the tire contact from the steering point. I bet Froze is right. I'd like to hear from other owners of the Mercier Galaxy Tour. I did see one in Manhattan the other day, but when I struck up a conversation, asking if he had purchased the bike from BikesDirect as I had, he said he had no idea, and turned away to talk with his buddies. Anyway, it may be that this "defect" is part of what makes the bike feel so fun to me. It also might explain the unusually low price. Still, most people getting a hybrid are expecting a more relaxed ride. This is not a relaxed ride. This is an exhilarating ride without being clipped into a racer. Which is just what I want.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kahn View Post
    Hi! Awesome review.

    I was wondering how it has fared in longer distanced rides. I'm planning to use this bike to commute to school which is approximately 2 miles one way and dip my feet into some cycling.

    Anyways, thanks for reading. Cheers.

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    I don't know if the trail issue (if that is indeed the problem, which I can of think it is though) is a defect, if the factory built it that way for a reason it would be interesting to find out why. I think a lot of times though in lower end bikes that are mass produced not a whole lot of engineering goes into them. My grandson has a WallyWorld bike his dad gave him (who understand nothing about bikes) and the bottom rear chain stay is flattened to a pancake from the bottom bracket to about 4 inches out then slowly squares, but the other side is square along it's entire length, it came from the factory like this! He hit a curb one day and the side that was flat as pancake bent, I bent it back, but I knew this would be weak spot on this bike. Fortunately he is rapidly growing out of the bike and next year he won't be able to ride it.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xk98yvozq1g
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvk63...eature=related
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=p92Stnnigjs
    "They don't do things that way anymore. This is the Age of Science Know-How, electronal marvels."

  6. #6
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    I had a mercier galaxy tour made from Reynolds steel and mostly had a sora drivetrain. I though it would be a decent all arounder for the money. Buying that bike for $500 might have been the most regrettable decision I have ever made with any moderately priced item. I live in the high Rockies, with 1000 to 2000 ft climbs and descents all over the place, with super tight hair pin turns. That bike could not take a turn at speed if it had to. It was super unstable at high speeds and felt like it was going to fall apart right under me.

    If I still lived in Buffalo, NY it prolly would have suited my needs a little better and I may have kept it. I have since picked up a Fuji Dynamic 10 from the 70s that is a rust bucket and I only paid $15 for it. Perfect for commuting, errands, bad weather cycling, and long casual rides when I don't feel like pulling out the other bikes, and handles just fine on tight descents. It is equipped with the same fenders and a similar rear rack, I just whole heatedly believe they don't test out the geometry of their bikes at BD. I said this in another post some time back, can't remember which one.

    All that being said, I couldn't ride my mercier no handed either, at least no more than a few seconds here and there. It is your bike and you're the only person that needs to like it. I can do extended climbs with no hands, slight turns, and mellow descents on my three bikes I own now.

    Anyways, you have the bike that is perfect for your needs now, have fun and ride the $hit out of it!

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Thanks for the detailed response! I'm getting the bike in two days. Can't wait!

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