Just starting out. Any help appreciated!

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by justincase04, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. justincase04

    justincase04 New Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I'm a poor college student who will be graduating in 3 months to become a poor high school math teacher :)

    My riding experience has been limited to riding around an old mountain bike I got from a friend.

    I took a cycling class in college and thoroughly enjoyed riding. I've made the decision to finally get a better bike. The problem is I can't find the right one let alone even know where to start. I've been cruising around the net for the last few days and can't stop thinking about what kind of bike to buy.

    Here is how long/far I currently ride:

    I want to ride bikes mainly for recreation/fitness

    I ride for 45-60 minutes 12-15 miles.

    I ride mainly on paved bike lanes. Occasionally there is mildy rough terrain I must maneuver through but nothing too serious.

    I don't know what bike I should get. I've been looking around and haven't come to a conclusion. People have said that hybrids are good/bad. I was looking at one below a road bike but don't even know the right name for it. road sport or commuter bike?

    Any suggestions would be nice. I don't mind spending the $ if I know its worth it. But then again I'm a poor school teacher :)
     
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  2. kspangler

    kspangler New Member

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    MY OPINION - I got back into cycling by buying a used road bike - a Diamondback Interval. It was a good all-around bike. It wasn't until I started riding 40 mile rides that I discovered the bike didn't really fit me. I'm assuming, by what you said, that you'll be doing much less riding then me. My opinion is that I'd buy a used bike. If you're not worried about the "name brand" and all you should be able to get one for $100.00. The Diamondback I got was $120.00 and it was two years old. It listed for $500 - 600. A steel frame would be the most reliable for you. If you're going to leave it outside in the weather, make sure you wax it good - otherwise it will rust. Make sure you buy a helmet too. Spend your money for a new one too. If you determine you really like cycling you should get involved in a bike club locally. You'll meet people who have bikes for sale and you might even get discounts to local bike stores. The clubers are good points of contact for a lot of topics too.

    Good luck.
     
  3. lugger

    lugger New Member

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    A used bike and cycling club is a good idea. (BTW, Kspangler, does waxing a steel frame really prevent rust? What kind of wax?)

    It sounds like, first, you are really debating which style of bike. After you choose the style, then you can decide which bike to get. There are two styles: Road bikes and Hybrids. Road bikes are the traditional old fashioned ten speed style with drop handlebars and often a straight top bar (between the seat and handlebar). A hybrid is a combination of a road bike and a mountain bike with flat handlebars and a sloping top tube. Road bikes are more efficient and some say hybrids are more comfortable. My own preference is for a road bike. A well fitting road bike is as comfortable as your favorite old shoes. I do not know anything about hybrid bikes, but I did ride one once and thought it would be fine for riding around the city.

    Steel is classic and it has a softer ride than aluminum. Only the cheapest hybrids are steel, and cheap steel. If you want an ok hybrid, I think it will have to be aluminum. Many knowledgable people like aluminum a lot. I'm sure you will get great advice about hybrids from other people.

    For a steel road bike, check out Fuji, Jamis, Trek and Bianchi. The Bianchi Volpe is an excellent all around bike. I think it may be the best of the high-mid level bunch for moderate and long rides. Even if you don't get one, it is a good high standard for comparisons. (My road bike is an old steel Trek, but they don't make it anymore. Too bad.)

    The best test would be to spend a day on a well-fitting hybrid and spend another day on a well-fitting road bike. Any chance of borrowing or renting? Just be sure both bikes are similar quality and they fit you. Then you could get a good idea of which style you prefer.
     
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