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Test & Tuning Decathlon Bike:
Triban RC 120 Disc
French sports discounter Decathlon is known for its excellent value for money, but what you get for your money with the Triban RC 120 Disc - respect, that's awesome. Exactly € 499,99 are called for the chic blue racer with orange Triban lettering. Comparable bikes of other manufacturers cost gladly times the double. So maybe a cheater after all?
Anyone who has known Decathlon for some time probably knows that the entire cycling line, including clothing and accessories, is marketed under the B'Twin label. Or rather it was. Because everything has changed recently - from March 2019 there will be brand labels for every cycling sector. The Road Cycling segment, designed for comfort, long distance and everyday use, is covered by the Triban models. Road Racing, strongly competition-oriented, is covered by the brand label Van Rysel. In this respect it suits me, I am not a competition driver and therefore in good hands with the Triban brand. Nothing worse than a bike that doesn't fit your personal needs and abilities! The Triban 120 is actually a high-end Triban 100. A cyclist friend even called it the Triban 100 on steroids. The 100 has already proven in many tests that for € 259.99 you get a full-fledged racer with a range of uses from road to gravel to randonneur.
The Triban RC 120 Disc is based on the proven 6061 aluminium frame of the 100. Decathlon sells the Triban 100 in over 50 countries. That means really large quantities and in total millions of
kilometers of experience. Advantage: The 1830 g heavy frame is technically mature and Decathlon gives a lifetime warranty on it. By the way, this also applies to the stem, handlebar and fork. The
fork is undoubtedly the highlight of the RC 120 Disc. No shit, it is a carbon fork. It doesn't just look that way - everything is real. I particularly like the natural carbon design. For me it
also looks as if it is the same fork as used on the higher quality Decathlon bikes RC 500, RC 520 and RC 520 Gravel. That would be nice, wouldn't it? In addition to the high-tech fork, there are
mechanical disc brakes from Promax with 160 mm rotors and semi-metallic brake pads at the front and rear. Finished is the varnish concerning the optics! In front of you stands a bicycle dream in
noble navy blue and black and it definitely makes a good figure in the beer garden too.
With the favourable price, it is of course clear that there will be some compromises to be made somewhere. And so the Triban RC 120 Disc has a somewhat peculiar mix of components. The rear derailleur, front derailleur, cassette and brake/shift lever come from Taiwanese manufacturer Microshift, while Decathlon uses the Shimano Tourney A070 road bike crankset for the crank with double chainring.
By the way, the Decathlon bike comes with tubular tires, but the rims are already 'Tubeless Ready'. So you don't have to invest in new wheels. The standard tires are sporty profiled road tires
with a modern 28 mm width. Hell yea!
The standard pedals are, as I should say, very simple and don't really fit the bike. I think the pedals are mounted more for the sake of completeness. A Decathlon customer wants a 100% ready to ride bike. After all, the plastic pedals are nice and light.
Out of the Box and
Officially Decathlon sells the Triban RC 120 Disc as a road racing bike with which you 'make fast progress'. With its 2x8 gears it is also suitable for any track. And what does that mean in
concrete terms? I would like to take up again the new brand philosophy of Decathlon: Triban stands for comfort, long distance and everyday life. In this respect, you sit much more relaxed on this
bike than on a competition racing bike. The Triban is really pleasant to ride and yet somehow sporty. I feel ready to ride an attack at any time. That is real racing bike feeling what arises
I am 180 cm tall and have decided on the L frame. The size M was definitely too small for me. I would have had to ride with a lot of elevation and then there wouldn't have been much of the Triban comfort left. The RC 120 Disc moves forward wonderfully, the bike is very stiff and the cockpit is great. The optical value continues in haptics and function. A small drop of bitterness: Unfortunately, the employee in the Decathlon shop didn't check the gears and so there was chain rub in some gears on the front derailleur. When you pick up a bike at Decathlon, make sure everything works perfectly. For me it was unproblematic because I know my way around quite well, but especially if you are a beginner, everything should work perfectly.
Back to riding. The disc brakes are great, so are the tires. They have really good grip on the road and look great. Almost like a super bike tire that got too thin. The track keeping on fine, rolled gravel is also ok. At least as long as it's dry. Anyone like me who, motivated by the many positive tests of the Triban 100, intends to use the RC 120 Disc more on gravel should, however, put on other tires.
From Leisure Road Bike to Gravel Racer
My home is surrounded by woods. More precisely, there is a lot of forest and many gravel roads. And so it was obvious to make a few modifications to the bike. First I replaced the standard
platform pedals. Shimano M324 combination pedals are the better choice for me. How it is said, clipped-in and free! Click pedals are simply mandatory if you want to be sporty with the RC 120
Disc. I guess I'll change to PD-EH500 soon; they fit even better in style.
The 700x28 series tires have Protect+ puncture protection, but for extended gravel tours they are nothing. In a first step I changed to 700x35 hybrid tires. Quite consciously I have decided here for the Decathlon house brand. On the one hand they are very cheap, but on the other hand you can change them directly in the shop when you buy the bike and drive gravel without end right from the start. You can also easily convert one size bigger to 700x38. The 35er size goes just also on the road still very well and that was important to me. No Gravel Racer without a frame bag! For the longer tours I need space for tire kit, tools, power bars, keys, credit card and more. Also here you find the right equipment at Decathlon (Riverside 300). If more space is needed I also use the Hysenm saddlebag (Amazon). Not to be missed is the mobile phone mount for navigation. Here I made good experience with the Grefay PB03AC (Amazon).
There are, of course, thousands of options for retrofitting tires and accessories. For me personally, the Schwalbe G-One Allround and the WTB Riddler are further alternatives. Maybe even
The Decathlon Hybrid tires are going very well so far and I didn't have a flat tire yet. Just because they are cheap doesn't mean they are bad. Sure, they should be a bit lighter. The traction on gravel and light single trails is much better. On the road the tires are a good compromise for me.
The Triban RC 120 Disc from Decathlon is a great sports bike at a fair price. The bike is neither a cheapo, nor a cheater. For price-conscious leisure cyclists with sporting ambitions definitely
a very hot offer. The seating position is comfortable and anyone who wants to attack can get out of the saddle and really put the pedal to the metal. No speed is too high for the disc brakes,
they are easy to adjust and decelerate excellently.
The Microshift gearshift is also convincing. It is in no way inferior to the well-known Shimano and Sram products. An 11x34 rear sprocket set and a double chainring in the front with 50 and 34 teeth respectively results in 16 gears. Uphills welcome. Highlight is the carbon fork.
No wonder that shortly after the start of sales not all sizes are available anymore. I am really happy to have received a bike in size L for the 2019 season. The conversion to the trendy Gravel Racer is possible with very little effort. I strongly suspect that the French will soon bring a 120 Gravel and probably also a 'Limited' edition. No doubt, the RC 120 Disc has the potential for it.
Top Tuning Parts
Decathlon B'TWIN Trekking 9 Speed
Shimano Combination Pedals PD-M324
Decathlon Frame Bag Riverside 300
Triban Riderz Community
You also ride a Triban RC 120 Disc? Then share your experiences with me. Especially to tires and other tuning parts your information is always welcome. Because for
me, only really tested tires and parts make it on the list! Even if you have questions about the bike you are welcome to contact me.
By the way, under the hashtag #swtrbn120rc you can find all my posts about the Triban RC 120 Disc on Instagram.
The lists will be extended as new information becomes available. Articles in square brackets: [I mounted these parts on my Triban RC 120 Disc myself and/or have them in use].
List Gravel Tires (Testet by Users)
[Decathlon B'TWIN Trekking 1 Speed 700x35c '(625g/22TPI)]
Decathlon B'TWIN Trekking Speed 700x38c (680g)
Decathlon B'TWIN Trekking 9 Speed Protect Plus 700x38c (610g/60TPI)
Schwalbe CX Comp 700x35c (480g/50TPI)
Schwalbe CX Comp 700x38c (550g/50TPI)
Schwalbe Smart Sam 28x1.40 / 700x35c (475g/67TPI)
[Schwalbe Smart Sam 28x1.60 / 700x40c (555g/67TPI) => no problem at front; really close at rear (only 2 mm free space to horizontal frame tube)]
Hutchinson Overide 700x35 Hardskin (350g/127TPI)
Panaracer Gravelking SK 700x35c (380g)
List Recommended Tuning Parts
[Shimano Combination Pedals PD-M324]
Shimano Combination Pedals PD-EH500
[Decathlon Frame Bag Riverside 300]
[Phone Mount Grefay PB03AC]
[Decathlon Triban Bottle Holder 500 (schwarz)]
[Decathlon B'Twin Bottle 750 ml]
[XLC Skewer Set QR-L05]
[Antimi LED Bike Light Set (Front Light)]
[Decathlon Rear Light LED RL 500 USB 8326393]
[Decathlon Mudguard 8327786 (rear)]
[Decathlon Mudguard MTB 8327783 (Frame)]