Critical Cycles Chatham Men’s 26″ Beach Cruiser Review
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If you are an occasional weekend rider and don’t want to spend a ton, then a beach cruiser bike is perfect for you.
Or more specifically, the Critical Cycles Chatham beach cruiser.
Why is it ideal for weekend riders?
Because it’s a sharp looking bike of great quality that comes at a budget-price.
In fact, it will be very difficult to find another beach cruiser of similar quality at such a low price.
But you already know all that.
What you want is a proper review of this bike. So, let’s get on with the review.
Critical Cycles Chatham Men's 26" Beach Cruiser Review
When it comes to cruiser bicycles, Westridge is a name you can trust blindly. Their unwavering loyalty to their customers and uncompromising mentality on quality is something that you can’t but admire. And the best thing is that they somehow manage to keep the price reasonable.
Available in three-speed options (single, three-, seven-), which allows you to pick the exact bike that suits your needs. The extra wide tires will make your ride effortless and bump-friendly. It features Promax Alloy V-brakes, which are one of the best in the market and will give you complete control over your bicycle.
I must warn you that the bike may make some people envy you since the bike looks absolutely gorgeous. If there was a beauty pageant for cruiser bikes, I bet this would have been the winner. Aside from looking super nice, it also very comfortable due to the softness of the seat.
You’ll also be getting a handmade steel frame so that it can absorb the shock better. Saying durable wouldn’t do justice to the frame as it’s basically unbreakable. Also, the bike is very lightweight compared to the others which makes it possible for you to ride long without getting tired.
The manufacturers have done a commendable job of designing the bicycle. Due to the sleek design, it looks very appealing to the eyes. The bike comes in several colors and no matter which one you choose, the paint is gorgeous.
The handlebar is wide enough to let you drive from an upright position. That way you won’t have to bend down during the ride. Since it doesn’t put your back through unnecessary strain, you can ride the cruiser bike even if you suffer from chronic back problems.
What makes the bike really special is that it features a hand-made steel frame. It shows that the manufacturers care about the people who spend their hard-earned money to purchase the bike. The steel frame is preferred by many over the aluminum ones due to the fact that it makes the ride much softer.
The fact that this one comes with three speed-options to choose from is a huge plus.
It makes the decision-making process a lot easier as you can get the exact number of gears you want.
The single speed bike is ideal for those who are going to ride on plain roads or beaches.
While the three-speed one offers a bit more than the single speed bike and but not as much as the seven-speed one.
The 7-speed Shimano Tourney derailleur is really good and able to hold well in hilly terrains. But don’t expect it to act like mountain bikes. Otherwise, you would be disappointed, simply because it isn’t one.
Though all the gears work really well, you may find it a bit difficult to get to the highest gear. In my opinion, that’s a very minor inconvenience and shouldn’t be given much importance.
If you like bikes that don’t weight much, then you can surely give this a try. This one weighs as little as 40 lbs, which is really light for a cruiser bike.
It’s important to know if the bike can carry you before making the purchase.
The specs from manufacturers state that the recommended weight is 220 pounds.
But that doesn’t mean that people who weigh more than the recommended pounds, won’t be able to ride the bike.
I’ve seen people saying that they are over 300 lbs and yet was able to ride the bike comfortably.
I don’t believe they could have made the assembly any easier except delivering a fully assembled bike.
Most of the works are already, done for you. You just have to take care of the tires, seat, and the handlebar. And what’s more, the required tools are included in the unit.
To help you further, they have uploaded an instruction manual on the internet which you can download from their official website.
As the entire setup process is simple and intuitive, I don’t expect it to take longer than half an hour.
What can I say about the Promax alloy V-brakes that hasn’t already been said?
They are one of the best out there. It’s highly responsive and puts you in complete control of the ride.
If you are likely to roam around the town a lot and need to brake often, then this bike is guaranteed to have your back and keep you safe.
The saddle is very wide and designed to make you feel as comfortable as possible.
Unlike other budget-friendly bikes, you won’t need to upgrade your seat for superior comfort.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do I need to assemble the bike?
Yes, I’m afraid so. But most of the parts arrive being already assembled. In addition, tools such as Allen wrenches and combination wrench come with the package to make installation easier.
2. Can I ride the bike on mild hilly terrains?
Yes, you can. But there’s a condition: you must get the 7-speed Shimano Tourney derailleur. The other two options aren’t well-equipped to take on hilly terrains mild or not.
3. How much weight can this bike hold?
Though the recommended weight by the manufacturers is 220 pounds, it can hold up to 350 lbs.
4. Does the unit come with reflectors?
Yes, they do. While a red reflector comes for the rear, the front wheel gets a while reflector. By the way, according to the US law, the manufacturers are obliged to give a full set of reflectors with the bike.
5. Can I ride this thing on a flat path with some gravel?
Light gravel shouldn’t be an issue. However, it’s not meant to be used on paths that are filled with gravel and dirt. So, it would be better if you stick to the only flat ground.
Good-looking, affordable, and durable.
These are the three words I’d use to describe the bike.
Are there better bikes out there?
Yes, but they will cost you 2-3 times more.
At this price range, it will be extremely difficult for you to find another bike that offers the same quality and features.
Let me know what you have decided in the comments section.