Fifty Plus (50+) - Gift for Dad
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My dad has gotten into biking these past 2 years, and this Christmas I was thinking of getting him a proper bike. He's 6'6" and 300 pounds and just turned 51, not totally unfit, but not ready to climb everest either. The bike he is using now I think is putting unnecessary pressure on his knees and back due to it being not big enough and him not being able to extend his legs enough.
For his type of riding (<15 miles/day max) I assume he needs some sort of hyrbid as they call it???
Any recommendations or places to start would be greatly appreciated, by not only me but him as well.
I will take him to the bike shop to try out whatever just to be sure, I just assumed there are more bikes in the world than are represented in the bike shop... So I sought some perspectives
10-31-06, 09:00 PM
Try and do some research on your local bike shops. Go visit them, you'll get an idea what shop is best suited to your needs. Then trust them.
10-31-06, 09:06 PM
With his Extremely tall height, he needs a custom frame-set.
He needs to be measured for a proper sized frame and bars(Stem). Find a good bike fitter.
A quick search on E-bay by typing in the frame size,(25,26 inch) or (63cm on up)will reveal many bikes in his size. You can alway go with a custom builder like Waterford...
11-01-06, 04:35 AM
Several brands make hybrid bikes in xl or even xxl size frames. They might have to order one for you. Cannondale builds some and has a good warrenty. Hybrids can also be adjusted quite a bit for fit. How much is your budget? Do you anticipate him riding in rain or wet weather?
11-01-06, 12:24 PM
Have a riding partner that is 6'6" and around 240 lbs and gaining. For someone this size you do need a substantial bike- on strength and size. Unfortunately- that weight will also cause some problems on Parts failure. He may be unfit but the legs will be powerfull. Look for a Mountain bike in Large size. My mate has a Giant Boulder in a 23" frame. (And they do larger) Aluminium frame and the Model has been changed to something similar in the frame stakes- better components and a new name.
Although the frame on this is still going after 6 years- We did experience a few problems with the wheels- crankset and Bottom bracket. All of which were sorted out by giant under warranty. Theses components have been improved now.
So just a suggestion- Mountain bike such as the Giant Boulder- Upgrade the tyres to slicks and if possible get a rigid front fork version. Still expect to have a few problems but My mate does go Offroad so pushes his luck a bit. Looking for a picture of him on his bike but the only one is front on. I can assure you he is big but the bike fits.
A friend is about the same size and rides an XL (23") hybrid...has raised the seatpost a bit because of longer legs, but its a good fit.
You have a budget?...what does ride...road, trail,?
11-01-06, 05:36 PM
I sound somewhat similar to your Dad, being 6'5", 51 years old, and "un-thin" (240 lbs.) My bike is the old Raleigh road bike that I bought new in 1980, which then sat unused for many years. When I resumed biking a year or so ago, I found that the following were most critical to me, in terms of getting re-started with reasonable comfort:
- even with a 25" / 63cm frame, I needed a longer seat post to get enough leg extension. getting my bike set up for the best fit (especially leg angles, leg extension, etc.) was the most important item for both effort reduction and avoidance of things like knee pain.
- a decent seat with an "anatomical" cut-out (I forget the right word - peritonum????) - I think that having a little bit of padding/give to the seat is helpful, but I stuck to a seat that is still basically a road bike saddle in terms of shape (in my case a LeMond seat with leather top surface, cut-out, and a little bit of gel padding)
- even if you feel dumb at first wearing bike shorts, get a half-decent set that will povide some padding. If spandex is out, then you can still find MTB shorts that look more like running shorts.
- My bike has the top of the handlebars set a fair amount lower than the saddle, which I don't mind, but getting a flat-bar bike, or a "touring" road bike set-up with a higher bar height may make it a lot more comfortable.
- for a bit down the road, consider going to clipless pedals with decent shoes, although toe-clips should be fine at first.
My "old school" bike is pretty strong and handles my weight just fine (steel frame). For a new bike, a mountain, hybrid or "cyclecross" style may make more sense than a road bike. Or, get a touring bike, which in general will be set up for handling higher weight. If you live in an even slightly hilly area, make sure that you have a low enough gear, since extra weight is a huge handicap for climbing hills. Mountain and hybrid bikes of course have wider gear spreads, and lower gears, but some road-style touring bikes make use of mountain bike gear cassettes, derrailleurs, etc. At minimum, it is good to have a triple crank, even if you have a road cassette on the back.
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