Welcome to Cog Mag
Welcome to Cog Mag, your #1 source for biking and cycling needs. We are here to help you find all the best cycling gear, provide insightful tips, and offer expert reviews so you can get the most out of your peddling adventures. Whether you are a cycling race aficionado, hitting the mountain trails, or just riding your bike to work, we are here to share our knowledge and experience. Our expert reviews dig deep into the details of what makes cycling and biking gear perform to the highest of levels. Regardless of your biking preferences, we can help you make a well-informed and enjoyable purchase.
Roads are make for a much more uniform and predictable surface compared to trails lined with gravel or shifting dirt. Bike riding on the well-trodden roads is by far the most popular approach at cycling. With all our well maintained roads it’s pretty easy to understand why. Truthfully, road bikes go everywhere today. From the urban sprawl of our most heavily populated cities, to the small villages where motorized vehicles are more sparse than hen’s teeth, road bikes rule the day.
Thankfully road bikes are remarkably versatile machines, and there are a spectacular variety of designs to cover nearly every conceivable need. Whether you need a cheap commuter bike or just want a little exercise, as you might have guessed by the name, road bikes are not made for the trail. They won’t perform well off the road and they are not designed to. They are designed for speed, cornering, breaking and climbing hills. And the smoother the pavement, the better. This is the environment where road bikes shine.
Typical road bike designs have skinny tires, no suspension, a lightweight frame, and multiple gears. Prices range widely, but riders can find some of today’s best road bikes under 500 dollars and still get into truly exceptional performance that won’t break the bank. Quality road bikes typically feature two cogs on the front crank set while the rear cassette may feature up to 11 gears, for example. This combination would provide 22 gears and allow the rider to traverse a huge variety of slopes and control how difficult or easy the riding might be.
For all-around functional designs you might look at hybrid bike designs in order to capture a wider cross-over into the benefits of a mountain bike as well as road bike designs. Hybrids are a jack-of-all-trades design. On the pavement, a road bike will out perform a hybrid, but a hybrid will also outperform a mountain bike on uneven or rough pavement that a road bike won’t handle well. For mixed terrain and multi-disciplinary cycling, hybrids are excellent multi-faceted machines.
If you are looking at mountain biking, the variety of surfaces you could find yourself riding is almost infinite. Whether you are focusing on trail riding, downhill, racing, or a mix of everything, choosing the right mountain bike will make everything seem right in the world. There are a variety of designs and purposes, so whether you are looking for the best mountain bikes under 500 dollars, or somthing more specific like the best gravel bikes under 1000 dollars, attention to detail can make a big difference.
Mountain bikes all incorporate different designs and features that provide the rider a distinct advantages to tackle certain terrain. Transporting your bike to remote locations is likely going to require some type of bike carrier. You should look for a vehicle mounted bike carrier that makes loading and unloading easy. Most riders use a hitch bike rack which is super easy to remove from your vehicle when not in use.
For the everyday mountain biking adventure on solid trails and dirt roads, most riders will be all set up for success with nothing more than an affordable rigid frame design with no suspension at all. If you are into hard trail riding, or dirt jump bikes, you’ll absolutely need a reputable set of mountain bike wheels if you want your ride to last long term. Mountain bike suspension systems soften the ride, but they also redirect energy into shock movement rather than forward momentum. In other words, whether front or rear suspension, energy loss is intrinsic to their design, which becomes particularly noticeable on paved surfaces or uphill climbing.
For many modern bikes suspension is becoming unnecessary. To say something like this was heresy all but 10 years ago, but new frame geometry has really changed mountain bikes as we know them. Rigid frame mountain bikes are low maintenance and simple machines, but you still get what you pay for. For newcomers, finding the best beginner mountain bike within your budget will probably take priority. With that said, trail bikes with suspension still have a lot of appeal for some riders, and mountain bike front suspension is the most common.
The most popular mountain bikes that provide for a wide range of versatility are trail bikes. Trail bikes are designed to handle long trail rides through a variety of terrains, including some fairly unruly downhill riding. By way of contrast, mountain bikes for racing are more commonly known as cross-country mountain bikes, and they will either have very efficient suspensions or none at all.
On the other extreme, racing downhill mountain bikes are going to rely heavily on suspension systems. Forward momentum is fairly easy to regain given the downhill slope, so more involved suspensions are welcome when taking large jumps and fighting to maintain straight lines. Serious downhill racing bikes take incredible abuse, and probably won’t appeal to those looking for the best mountain bikes under 500 bucks. But low budget mountain bikes won’t stand the test of time in this genre, nor will they be safe.
In many parts of the world, E-bikes have been wildly popular for decades. The rest of the world stands to benefit greatly from from well-vetted electric bike technology that is now readily available with a proven track record. Electric bikes provide you with an “assist” with an electric motor that generates additional force with every turn of the pedals. Electric bikes are wildly popular among commuters and casual joy-riders alike. After all, a little help with those long hill climbs is a welcome reprieve whether you are making a grocery run, or going sight-seeing with a son or daughter in their child’s bike seat.
Prices vary widely, but for those in the market for the best electric bike under 1000 dollars, there is a good selection of bikes that will perform quite nicely if you do your homework. If you prefer to store you electric bike indoors, or have limited storage space, then most riders find it very worthwhile to consider a folding electric bike to minimize storage space concerns. Folding bikes are also much easier to keep safe from theft due to their easy indoor storage.
E-bikes are available in a wide variety of sizes and performance capability. You’ll find everything from fat-tire models with sleek design aesthetics, to utilitarian cargo bikes ready to haul bigger loads or have a child ride along. Before you jump right in, sorting out some of the finer details will go a long way toward helping you find the right electric bike for you.
Most e-bike owners are either going to focus on street riding or riding the trails, but there are also classes of e-bike worth understanding. In the US a Class 1 E-bike has no throttle and only offers pedal-assist. Class 2 provides throttle assist with a maximum speed topping out at 20 mph. The bikes in class 3 are also pedal assist only with no throttle, but this class offers a maximum speed of up to 28 mph.
For those in the modern sustainability vein of thought, e-bikes have a huge leg up when considering traffic congestion and emissions. In fact electric bicycles are even more sustainable than electric cars. In many large cities, shipping and food delivery services are finding electric bikes are much faster than being at the mercy of heavy traffic, which can easily be avoided. Whenever you decide a bit of exercise is in order, it’s a simple as shutting off the motor!
With busy schedules and crowded cities, anyone looking for a simple exercise solution should look no further than an exercise bike. Given that you have some available space to use a bike in your home, setting up an exercise bike avoids all the hassle of traveling to the gym, or braving the weather and traffic outdoors.
If you are pursuing are more healthy lifestyle through good exercise and diet, don’t forget that includes good mental health. Reducing stress is super important, and poor financial management is one of the biggest stress producers today. With that in mind, working within your budget is very important.
Although it isn’t everything, anyone who has been cycling for any given time will tell you to find and invest in the right gear for YOU! Not all bikes, accessories, and gear are created equal. There are so many personalizations you can make towards your cycling experience, and it can easily become confusing and overwhelming for beginners to know what they need in order to hit the ground running.
That is why our team members here at CogMag.com have put together their carefully crafted picks for all their favorite cycling gear. It is our hope that we can help remove all the non-essentials from this process and help you get riding as soon as possible!