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  1. #1

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    Default Picking a bicycle?

    I'm 47 and just moved to a nice flat area. I rode the standard 10 speed 27" when I was 16. I'm looking for a good bicycle to ride around the nice flat areas of my developement. Who knows, maybe I'll start making the 15 mile trek everyday to work on nice paved flat roads. I'm in med to ok condition, certainly closer to the med condition. 180 pounds, not very athletic, not a lot of muscle built up. What do I want to get? Price is really not a big object although obviously I'd rather spend money on audio rather than a bike. $300 to $700 is certainly not a concern. I'm thinking super lightweight though. What do I want to look at???
    Thanks!
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  2. #2

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    Mongoose has some nice stuff that is cheap and you can find them in any Dick's Sporting Goods store. Means you can go in to the store and put your hands on one before you buy it. Something I highly recommend doing.
    You're just jealous 'cause the voices don't talk to you!

  3. #3

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    Check out hard tails for street, and specialized.
    Please. Please contact me a ben62670 @ yahoo.com. Make sure to include who you are, and you are from Polk so I don't delete your email. Also I am now physically unable to work on any projects. If you need help let these guys know. There are many people who will help if you let them know where you are.
    Thanks
    Ben

  4. #4

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    No suspensions to keep the weight down. Cannondale, Trek, Edwardo Bianchi and many other manufacturers will get you a good long lasting frame. Look for carbon fiber or aluminum frames. These to keep the weight down.

    As far as whether or not to choose a racing bike -vs- a mountain bike? Your choice. A mountain bike has a more comfortable stance. You can always replace the big knobby tires with road tires to reduce a considerable amount of weight. My Cannondale is a mountain bike that weighs in at 19 1/2 lbs [with road tires] which is pretty damned good. With a mountain bike, you may want to choose custom gears to make it more road hospitable but that's not something that's mandatory.

    A racing bike, or European bike as some call it is already road ready, a little bit harder to control in certain situations and has very little weight to begin with. Generally different tranny than that of a mountain bike, so top speeds can be pretty high right off the bat.

    Also, be careful. Biking can be as addictive as audio. There's just about as many tweaks available for the bikes as well. Oh, one more thing. Quick release rims for front and back rims, mandatory. ;)
    In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

    Have you ever thought that the best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction?

  5. #5

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    A few links to particular bikes would be super useful as I haven't looked at any particular one for over 30 years.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  6. #6

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    1st is to be realistic about what you plan to do.

    Are you the type of person to lose interest quick or are you the type of person that likes a challenge and likes to learn something ne and try to improve at it.

    If you end up losing interest and it just ends up being a dust collector than any bike from dicks sporting goods is fine.

    But if you get a nice bike it will be a pleasure to ride and you will tend to ride it more and it can really devolope into a whole healthy lifestyle.

    I have a friend that didn't start riding until he was fifty and now he is 65 and has 12 bicycles and is in better shape than most 40 year olds.

    For what you described I would suggest something like this..

    http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkM...18&language=US

    It is a bike that you could grow into. For starters you would probably want a higher handlebar and larger volume tires for comfort, but as your fitness grows you could lower the bars and go to a performance road tire and the bike would be aero and roll fast without haveing the commited position of a race bike. You could also mount a rack on it to go pick up a six pack and a pizza :)

  7. #7

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    madmax, I can't help with recent bikes. I have a 1994 Cannondale and an '04 Trek. Haven't looked at new bikes in a while because I will just rebuild the bikes around the frames to suit my tastes. Bikezappa and a few others may be able to help with that.

    Oh, more speeds = better [like a 21-28 speed]. :D
    In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

    Have you ever thought that the best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction?

  8. #8

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    Oh, one more VERY important thing. Learn about the fitting of a bike to your body. That can make or break the experience and to me is THE single most important factor in the purchase of a bike. Any reputable high end bike shop, regardless of whether you purchase there or not, should be able to give you the low-down on this. If you have any questions about this, feel free to ask and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.
    In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

    Have you ever thought that the best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction?

  9. #9

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    I tend to be really into something, get out of it for a short while but keep coming back year after year. In the past I've never been sad that I bought the correct combination of something I wanted. Most things collect a little dust from time to time but keep getting re-utilized. In the end it is usually a good thing I bought the proper combo to start with.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  10. #10

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    Damn, I keep remembering stuff. If you do get a European type bike, insist that the brakes include two types of braking levers. The ones for the cup of the handlebar and the ones for the top of the handlebar. Even if you have to degrade the quality of the brake lever to do so. This is for safety as well as convenience, unless you are comfortable doing long distances crunched over....which I am not.
    In search of accurate reproduction of music. Real sound is my reference and while perfection may not be attainable? If I chase it, I might just catch excellence.

    Have you ever thought that the best way to enjoy digital music reproduction is to never listen to good analogue reproduction?

  11. #11

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    I see the sirrus sport for sale between 600 to 800 but some say they are blue. According to the web site they are only available in white and silver. Always some confusion when looking at new things...
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  12. #12

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    Love my Haro.. Down-curved bar has saved my "friends" a time or two.

  13. #13

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    the colors are usually different for each level of parts for a given model.

    The bike one level below the one I posted doesn't have a carbon fork or seat stays.

    The bike one level above has nicer cranks and shifting components.

    The carbon bits are nice because they tame the road buzz making the bike more comfortable. On a 5 mile ride it is no big deal but you get 20+ and it is a nice feature and if you are over 35 years young and plan on riding more than 50 miles its almost mandatory.

    The components on the bike I posted will probably be fine for you. If you were planning on riding 3,000 miles a year or more I would suggest something better.

    I look for some other options.

  14. #14

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    Here is treks version.

    http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/2008/road/fx/75fx/

    It has nicer parts (cranks, derailleurs ) but you don't get the carbon bits on the frame.

    5 years ago I would have said you are better off with better parts an no carbon, but carbon has come a long way and I can't wait to see what the future has in store.

  15. #15

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    I will NOT be riding 3000 miles a year. This looks like a nice bike for what I need. Keep the info coming. I'd like to find something this summer. Where would I find one cheap?
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  16. #16

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    what area are you located?

  17. #17

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    Loveland/Fort Collins area of Colorado. Actually right next to those in a town called Johnstown.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  18. #18

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    I bought a $96 "Pacific" bike at Toys R us 5 years ago; aluminum frame, Shimano brakes and all the gears stuff. Changed the mountain tires for street tires and use it frequently just to exercise. Love it.
    _________________________________________________
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    Thank God for different opinions. Imagine the world if we all wanted the same woman

  19. #19

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    The Trek 7.5 FX seems to have some pretty great reviews. What size would a 6'2" 180 pound normal sized guy need?
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  20. #20

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    I would take the time to go get professionally fitted at a bike shop. Even if they don't have the exact model that you want, try to get fitted on a similar Trek (most bike shops will carry Trek). As someone who has ridden bikes too small in the past, trust me: its worth the extra time to get it right the first time.

  21. #21

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    Oh, and I have had a Trek (4300) for 6 years and am still riding it. They make nice, durable bikes.

  22. #22

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    I have been an avid mountain biker for over half my life (except the last year or two since my bike was stolen)
    I started in 95 with a Specialized Hard Rock. Saved up my babysitting money all summer to buy the thing. Nothing but problems with that bike. Two major accidents on it as well. Maybe it was just a run of bad luck, but I swore off Specialized after that.
    I then owned a '94 Hoo Koo E Koo that I got from my Dad. LOVED it. Then bought a green '98 Hoo Koo E Koo. Several years later, got an '06 Hoo Koo E Koo (finally with disc brakes!) Been a fan of the hardtails, and Fisher has treated me very well over the years.
    Afterall, Gary Fisher INVENTED mountain bikes. Give em a whirl. They're fantastic.
    Last edited by dane_peterson; 06-08-2008 at 09:06 PM.

  23. #23

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    Actually Butch Cassidy the sundance kid invented mountain biking.

    And specialized had the first production mtb, heck I think ross had the mt Tam before fisher had any production mtbs. You could get a Mt Tam in 84 or 85

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H39CxyNfNOM
    Last edited by mule; 06-08-2008 at 09:26 PM.

  24. #24

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    Heh. Fisher had mtn bikes rolling far before 84. C'mon man!

    http://www.engr.wisc.edu/wiscengr/issues/Apr01/mtb.html

  25. #25

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    Do you guys wear the helmets, special shoes, speedos and all that other happy crap? Not judging, just wondering.
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  26. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by madmax View Post
    Do you guys wear the helmets, special shoes, speedos and all that other happy crap? Not judging, just wondering.
    I used to only wear a helmet for cross country and dirt jumping/downhill and skip it on my road bike, but last year I got hit by a car so now I wear them all the time. You just never know.

    Shoes, I have about $750.00 in cycling shoes, you don't need that. It would be like using cardas cables on a boom box. If you were to really get involved in riding where you are spending hours on the bike or you get very strong it is a different story. Basically if you want to get every watt of power out of a 500 watt sprint, then yes carbon or magnesium soled shoe is going to make a difference.

    The deal with cycling shorts is the pad. If you wear cotton undies, as the material stretches and changes shape while you pedal the weave of the material opens and closes. While this is hapening and your legs and body are moveing the material basically grabs and pulls the hair out or breaks it off and just chafes the hell out of the skin, this combined with sweating and you get an infection that they call saddle sores. So the "chamois" in cycling shorts helps to prevent this. I have been lucky enough to avoid getting them but some people are more prone, I have had friends that had to go on antibiotics to get rid of them and they suffered for whole seasons with them. I personally wear Pearl Izumi or Giordana bibs, that way they don't have the elastic around the midsection like shorts and are held in place better for a better fit, But again if you are more comfortable you will tend to ride more. You might not want to go that way unless you get more comitted, I'm not sure what they cost because I get help with that stuff but they are probably $150, but I'm sure you could get plain shorts for $50 and you could also get assos bibs for probably around $200.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by dane_peterson View Post
    Heh. Fisher had mtn bikes rolling far before 84. C'mon man!

    http://www.engr.wisc.edu/wiscengr/issues/Apr01/mtb.html
    I said production, and my ex's dad had one of Mert Lawwills bikes that was built up in the same era, basically a beach cruiser with a road derailleur on the back it was cool and innovative for the time.

    But to say one guy "invented" mountain biking is really silly, its like saying columbus "found" america, injuns were here long before him and me and my brothers were ripping motorcycle trails on our stingrays in 73/74 and I'm sure we weren't the first.

  28. #28

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    I suppose this argument has been going on for 3 decades for a reason...
    I said "mountain bikes", not "mountain biking". But whatever. My point was only that I like Gary Fisher bikes!
    I never used shoes, but I wish I had. Really improves transfer of energy. Toeclips work too, but can be dangerous. I had a few times where I crashed unnecessarily because my toestraps were too tight and I couldn't get out of them in time. For trail riding, shoes are the way to go.
    As for a helmet, I always wore one.

  29. #29

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    madmax

    i have been riding/commuting to work for 40 years. all of the advice above is good except the handle bar break levers. these breaks are made very cheaply, are very difficult to adjust and are not needed.

    anyway find a locale bike shop near you, i like the mom and pop type, that has been in business for over ten years and tell them your interest and budget for a bike. if they have been operating for a while they will not screw you. they should fit you to the bike and offer a free tune up after a few months. if this is a problem walk out. also try to visit the shop after work, saturday mornings they could be very busy and not be able to talk much.

    the shop will want you to be happy, ride alot and buy more stuff.

    win win

    also get helmet, bike bag with spare tube, tire irons and pump. getting a flat sucks be prepared.

    have blast and remember beer tastes so much better after a ride.

  30. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by bikezappa View Post
    madmax

    i have been riding/commuting to work for 40 years. all of the advice above is good except the handle bar break levers. these breaks are made very cheaply, are very difficult to adjust and are not needed.
    +1000. Back when I used to road ride, I had a nice bike (ie not cheap) that had those handle bar levers. They were constantly coming loose, and one time when I was going around a rotary one of the levers just came completely undone and fell off, while I went sailing into a car in front of me. Luckily I wasn't going TOO fast and the car was stopped so I just jumped up and rode off, but I recommend staying away from those handlebar levers on a road bike. If your bike does have them, never rely on them.
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

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