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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 04-19-17, 10:25 AM   #1
Evildeadedd
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I could use advice if you have time

Greetings all. I have spent the past few weeks mulling over the idea of getting a bike. I have finally decided to do it, but I have a few problems I could use a hand addressing.

First I am male 6'0" and round about 300lbs currently. So I need a bike that's not going to crumple if I hit a bump. Which leads into the next problem.

My budget for getting started is only about 200-300. I don't like spending money on stuff I don't "need", but I am working a side job later this month that pays that. Because of that I can justify spending the cash.

Three, it needs to be suitable to both dirt/gravel and paved roads. Leaving from my house, I have at least 2.5 miles of dirt before I hit pavement. The roads are fairly well maintained, but they are still dirt, and can get a little gnarly after a couple days rain.

Taking my wants/needs into consideration, I have been thinking a hybrid style bike would be the best fit. I have looked at a couple LBS, but by the time I factor in a helmet, I'm looking at close to 500 out the door, that's just too much for me. Which brings me to the point of this post. If you made it this far, gold star. I do tend to ramble on.

I have been scouring the central/northern Michigan Craigslist. Hoping to find a good fit. Trouble is, the more I look, the more I realize I have no idea what I am doing. I have seen quite a few bikes that fit my budget/needs, but I have no idea if they are worth the asking price. It doesn't help that companies use the same name/color multiple years, so I don't even know how to tell a bikes age. Seems to me riding a bike as a kid was so simple. Am I just over complicating this, or is biking like everything else in life? The older I get the more confusing it is.

Any help or advice y'all have is much appreciated. Thanks for reading my novella. Enjoy your day.
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Old 04-19-17, 10:45 AM   #2
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I would suggest looking at a used hard tail type of bike. Think others can recommend specific types to be on look out for on Craig's list and other for sale sites. You can get something in your budget. Good luck
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Old 04-19-17, 01:38 PM   #3
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Used Hard Tail (no suspension) Mtn bike is a good starting place (put street tires on it). Another option is a early 80's road bike, they generally have enough room to put bigger tire on them....

Craigslist or if the is a Bike Co-op close
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Old 04-19-17, 03:07 PM   #4
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Good advice above; not sure I can add much. $200-300 is very attainable. Go used even if you can afford new. Your tastes & your idea of what you want/need will change after a few miles "back in the saddle" and you can always switch up to a new or newer bike down the road. You'll kick yourself if you wind up reselling your first bike six months from now and learn then that it depreciated by half simply by rolling it out the LBS door.

Any half-reputable-make MTB will safely haul your weight. I second the hard-tail suggestion (e.g. no "suspension" features.) I put Schwalbe Marathons on mine-- street tires, but perfectly capable on hardpan / light gravel-- and the difference in rolling resistance, compared to the original "knobby" tires, is night and day. Old and heavy is fine for the frame. Wheels need to be strong but MTB wheels tend towards "overbuilt" to begin with and most modern 32- or 36-spoke wheels will do ya just fine. "Ugly" is also fine. "Compromised by rust" isn't fine. I would not pay more than $200 for a starter bike, but that's completely arbitrary and is based on the numbers/bikes I see in the Philadelphia area, which is saturated but pricey.

The cardio benefits and "calorie burn" from cycling isn't much different than running (with the caveat that i despise running but enjoy cycling, and can ride for FAR longer periods than I could ever run.) If that's true for you also, you'll soon be in a position where the bike's ability to support you isn't an important concern as the pounds drop off. Then you'll simply have to figure out how YOU can support the two-wheeled addiction.
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Old 04-19-17, 03:21 PM   #5
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Used Hard Tail from Craigslist is also what I would recommend for the situation you describe. Don't worry about your weight, mountain bikes are made tough, they're up for it.

Post some links that look interesting to you, we love to look at pictures of bikes and give our opinions! We'll do our best to help steer you to a bike that will get you started.

Good thing about buying a CL bike, once you're ready to upgrade, you can probably sell it on for the same price -- free rental!
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Old 04-19-17, 04:32 PM   #6
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Hey fellow Michigander!

Not sure what part of Northern Mi you are from (it could help people search for you!). But here is a specialized in Mt. Pleasant that is the style you want to look for.

https://centralmich.craigslist.org/bik/6079584182.html
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Old 04-19-17, 06:07 PM   #7
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Thanks for the advice all. I definitely wanted to stay away from suspension, so you're preaching to the choir there. I didn't think about putting less knobby tires on an mtb, I guess that basically a hybrid in a nut shell.

I am about a half hour north of mount pleasant. So the central mi Craigslist is my closest one, but there usually not much on it, so I expanded to the northern mi one.

I looked at that hardrock, it was one of the ones I was unsure was a good deal or not. I know nothing about deprecation in bikes, and I have only been able to figure out the year of a couple. I will get on there and pick a few out and see what y'all think. Thanks again.
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Old 04-19-17, 06:47 PM   #8
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I'd add to look for a 29'er mountain bike if possible, as 29" is essentially the same wheel as a 700c road wheel, opening you up to a much broader range of tires. A hardtail 29'er with some 700x45 semi-slick tires will handle most any road condition you might encounter.
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Old 04-20-17, 08:45 AM   #9
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You can check https://www.bicyclebluebook.com/ to help determine value. Don't take it as gospel but it is helpful and also includes the original MSRP for reference.
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Old 04-20-17, 09:03 AM   #10
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Talking with the owner of the hardrock ATM. It really looks like my best bet that's not 100 mikes away. Plus I found a post on the forums where someone did one almost just like it up with drop bars and commuter accessories. Their bike looked great.

Hope to go check it out tomorrow or Sat, hopefully it in decent working order. Feverishly watching YouTube videos on how to check over a used bike, wish me luck.
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Old 04-20-17, 09:28 AM   #11
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I did try the blue book site. My trouble with it is it wants more info that I can give. I can't figure out the years on most of the bikes I looked at, because they make the same model/color multiple years. Add to it that some people post pics they took with a baked potato, so color is iffy to begin with.
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Old 04-20-17, 10:04 AM   #12
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A key thing to remember is fit, if the frame is too big or too small you will never enjoy the ride. I am not so great with Mtn Bike sizing

also do you know bike mechanics? or are handy and willing to learn? that may make difference in bike you choose

here are a couple of possibilities varying ranges and styles..... again size important

Jamis commuter.....

https://centralmich.craigslist.org/bik/6044125233.html


used bike store

https://centralmich.craigslist.org/bid/6075080728.html
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Old 04-20-17, 02:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evildeadedd View Post
Thanks for the advice all. I definitely wanted to stay away from suspension, so you're preaching to the choir there. I didn't think about putting less knobby tires on an mtb, I guess that basically a hybrid in a nut shell.

I am about a half hour north of mount pleasant. So the central mi Craigslist is my closest one, but there usually not much on it, so I expanded to the northern mi one.

I looked at that hardrock, it was one of the ones I was unsure was a good deal or not. I know nothing about deprecation in bikes, and I have only been able to figure out the year of a couple. I will get on there and pick a few out and see what y'all think. Thanks again.

also search the lansing craigslist...i've seen a few nice bikes on there
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Old 04-21-17, 02:06 AM   #14
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Well looks like the hardrock going to be a bust. 17 inch frame is no good for longer arms. Back to searching.

I just wish I was in a better market area. There is nothing within 30 miles of me, and the other CL areas around me cover huge distances. Lansing for example is 90 miles away from me, and the Lansing CL has bikes that are 30 to 40 miles south of Lansing. Unless I am getting an amazing deal, I don't want to drive 120 miles one way just to look at a bike I might not even buy. Or worse yet and far more likely, buying a bike I don't really want because I drove so far to look at it. Just have to be patient, that's never been my strong suit.

As far as wrenching on a bike. I do most of the routine maintenance on my vehicles(oil, brakes, plugs, ect.) So while certainly not a mechanic by any stretch, I do plan on learning to do as much as I can myself. My primary concern is buying a money pit, because while I am trying to learn as much as possible, I am still a novice. Learning what's worth the cost/hassle replacing is going to take time.
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Old 04-21-17, 09:37 AM   #15
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You'd be surprised what can be accomplished by switching out stems.

I had a hardtail in a size that was called 19" that my (nearly-same-height) wife felt ridiculously stretched out on. But when I swapped in a 60mm stem instead of the 110 for her to try, she loved it, and claimed it for her own -- which is fine, because I bought a new bike for myself, the same bike sized 21", and I just swapped out the stem and it fits me fine.

For that hardrock, how long was the stem that was on there? If it's not already over 100mm, you might be able to get where you want with a longer stem.
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Old 04-22-17, 10:33 PM   #16
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What are the thoughts on this

nmi.craigslist.org/bik/6080338212.
Html

The blue book on it only listed at about 100, and I assume I would need to put a new wheel on the rear. So what he asking is not a good deal to me, but I have no idea how much work/money goes into a new rear wheel. I'm just not having much luck around here.

There are a metric ton of women's/shorties/x-mart bikes. Huffys,roadmasters, Schwinn. Lots of road bikes too, which would not work well on dirt roads. I just need to keep looking.
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Old 04-22-17, 10:35 PM   #17
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10 post rule stops me from posting actual links. Good for stopping spam, pain in my keister for legit questions.
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Old 04-23-17, 08:12 PM   #18
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then just post a few more post to get you over 10
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Old 04-24-17, 06:25 AM   #19
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I guess they leave you little choice.
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Old 04-24-17, 06:26 AM   #20
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Although this seems kinda close to spam.
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Old 04-24-17, 06:27 AM   #21
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This should be the last one I believe.
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Old 04-25-17, 03:41 PM   #22
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from you NMI craigs list

$500 so over budget, but would be something you could ride for a while

Specialized Tricross Disc Gravel/Cyclocross Bike - $500 (Bellaire)
https://nmi.craigslist.org/bik/6103814346.html



this would work with a little TLC if you didn't want the drops you could swap out the bar and brake levers pretty cheaply (VO Left Bank Handlebar - Handlebars - Components and VO City Bike Levers)

Men's Schwinn LeTour Bike - $100 (CADILLAC)

https://nmi.craigslist.org/bik/6063598805.html



Specialized Allez old school Bike for Sale - $150 (Traverse city)

https://nmi.craigslist.org/bik/6073710812.html

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Old 04-26-17, 02:48 AM   #23
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https://saginaw.craigslist.org/bik/6075284084.html

http://saginaw.craigslist.org/bik/6057419122.html

https://nmi.craigslist.org/bik/6097168466.html

Those are all road bikes. I would guess based on age
That they are steel framed, and the given stand over height sounds pretty good. My question with them would be, how would go into making them fit for gravel roads? Just tires and tubes, Or would I need whole new wheels?

What about
https://saginaw.craigslist.org/bik/6092784618.html

Or
https://saginaw.craigslist.org/bik/6095469286.html

And finally

http:////saginaw.craigslist.org/bik/6055468583.html

The 850 being a true MTB, means it would probably need more road appropriate
Tires and at 200 just for the bike would be at the edge of my budget. It just looks like a really nice bike.

Last edited by Evildeadedd; 04-26-17 at 03:02 AM.
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Old 04-26-17, 03:09 AM   #24
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Also with the vintage Schwinn's, I recall reading or seeing a video talking about Schwinn using a proprietary tire. I think it was in regards to a breeze or another of their cruiser styles. Not sure about their road bikes.
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Old 04-26-17, 03:59 AM   #25
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I had a Trek 520 many years ago. It was a comfortable bike to ride. If the 520 fits, I would go with that. You would had more hand positions available. If you find yourself challenged by cycling and want to start riding longer distances, the bike would be able to it. Make sure the bike fits, if you haven't already researched it, you should. I am 6'1'' and usually ride 58s.
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