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Old 04-17-11, 07:53 PM   #1
Steward
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Sear's Free Spirit. & general newbie cycle advice?

Hi, Let me start off by saying that I have barely any knowledge of the biking world. I have owned a bike for around 5 hours. So please excuse me if i say something foolish.






I picked up this free spirit earlier today and road it home (about a mile and a half journey). I payed 100$ for it. Now i know this is a lot to pay for a Department store bike (i have done a bit of research since then). On the ride home it handled decently and i didn't die.

I would like to clean it up a bit and was hoping if some one could direct me to some resources.Like a guide on dismantling it and parts that i should replace first. Another problem i just thought off is i'm a pretty big guy, around 220lbs. Is there something i should do to reinforce it? I guess im just looking for a guide to a first bike/new riders. If any one could help me out i would really appreciate it.
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Old 04-17-11, 08:25 PM   #2
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Chalk this one up to a learning experience. That bike is so ugly you should shave its butt and ride it backwards. Seriously, though, it may just be heavy duty enough to support you until you can get something better.

How true are the wheels? Do they rub the brake pads periodically? Do they move up and down? That would be the first thing I would check.

How about the shifting? Can you get all gears?

How do the brakes work? It looks like it has chromed steel rims which are not as good for braking as aluminum alloy rims are.

It's a start. Once you get into cycling for a while, you may want to keep this as your beater bike. Free Spirits were not known for being top of the line, but they were pretty durable.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 04-17-11, 09:09 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Doohickie View Post
How true are the wheels? Do they rub the brake pads periodically? Do they move up and down? That would be the first thing I would check.

How about the shifting? Can you get all gears?

How do the brakes work? It looks like it has chromed steel rims which are not as good for braking as aluminum alloy rims are.
i didn't notice any of those troubles with the wheels.
As far as shifting goes i didn't do much but i will take it out tomorrow and see.
All the shifting i did was pretty smooth.
The front brake is really sensitive and powerful. the back break is pretty weak thoe it doesn't really squeeze the tire at all.
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Old 04-17-11, 09:59 PM   #4
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Sounds pretty normal, actually.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 04-17-11, 10:08 PM   #5
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Steward, You overpaid for a rather low end bike. It looks like a rebranded Huffy. That being said, it's probably sturdy as can be. Adjust the back brake (google or search here), flip the handlebars back to where they should be and start riding.
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Old 04-18-11, 05:12 AM   #6
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I know someone who rides one of those Free Spirit bikes almost every day. For over a year now.

If the wheels are true and the drivetrain isn't worn out, the bike might work fine for a long time.
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Old 04-18-11, 11:35 AM   #7
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I'd ride it as is (with the hanlde bars adjusted) and look to upgrade to a better bike, if you find you like riding a vintage road bike. I would not put addition $ into it.
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