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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 10-21-07, 09:49 PM   #1
icebike
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Bike recommendations for 350lbs Clyde

Hello, I used to be a Clyde (240, now 170), I only wish I had known about this forum when I started. Anyway, my brother, who is in the mid 300lbs range would love to get into riding but is afraid that any bike buys will fall apart under him. I don't really have experience with it, since at 240lbs I just bought a quality bike and had no problems with it. Any proven bike combinations/recommendations?
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Old 10-21-07, 10:04 PM   #2
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What type of bike is he looking to buy? The Specialized Hardrock seems like a popular rig around these pars.
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Old 10-21-07, 10:14 PM   #3
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What type of bike is he looking to buy? The Specialized Hardrock seems like a popular rig around these pars.
Something for road (but not commuting) and light park trails. He's not too picky, just really afraid of it collapsing or constant tire deflation.
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Old 10-21-07, 10:22 PM   #4
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A big second on the Hardrock. It's a versatile bike and can be roaderized easily
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Old 10-21-07, 10:42 PM   #5
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icebike,

I am around 425lbs and have been riding my Giant Sedona DX (2005 model) and it has held up exceptionally well.

I'm not sure if he feels the way I did, but I was afraid to go in to my LBS (local bike shop) for the longest time, fearing that they would be rude or unfriendly due to my size. I found the exact opposite to be true Also, may I suggest he visit the Aero Tech Designs website and purchase a pair of their "Pro Bike Shorts". They come in sizes up to 5XL and are extremely comfortable. It made riding so much more enjoyable for me.
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Old 10-22-07, 06:38 AM   #6
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I am 408 lbs, and purchased a Hard Rock about 5 weeks ago. I love it. I made a saddle madification to it to fit my robust butt, but that was it. I ride it every day to work (3/4 mile one way) and rode a total of 18 miles last week. It was very reasonably priced. I love it.
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Old 10-22-07, 08:15 AM   #7
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I am close to the same size as your bother (currently 332 lbs) and bought a 2007 Trek 7100 from my LBS this August. The staff at my LBS was very helpful and informative. They were able to recommend multiple options and let me test ride any bike I was interested in. I chose a hybrid because I knew I would be riding mainly roads during my commute into Boston (9.5 miles each way) and I like the upright posture for riding in traffic (not so great in the wind). It is also good for weekend and evening rides with my family. I am not into mountain biking or trail riding.

I have over 500 miles on it so far and am very happy w/ my purchase. I ride mainly roads and bike paths, some smooth, some very rough. I have only had one problem so far. I popped a spoke on one of my commutes home from Boston. That was probably my fault for not watching the road close enough. I was able to make it home with out any further issues and my LBS fixed the problem in about 20 minutes. I haven't had any issues since.

I find the bike quite comfortable for the riding I do and it has been a great experience so far. The best advice I can give, is go to your LBS and test ride any bike that you find interesting. Buy the one that fits him best and then get out and ride. If I had to do it over again, I probably would by the Trek 7200 which has double walled rims, but that is looking through the rear view mirror. The only other thing you might want to consider is either upgrading your rear wheel or having the stock wheel hand rebuilt.

Good Luck and get out there and ride.
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Old 10-22-07, 09:43 AM   #8
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You guys are all awesome. Thanks for the help. I think he is probably anxious about walking into an LBS and people making fun of him, but after showing him your experience I think he will be much happier.
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Old 10-22-07, 10:19 AM   #9
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I started at about 374 on a Trek Navigator 300. A great reliable bike and comfortable to ride. I have since dropped down to low 300s and ride a road bike, but I still have and occasionally ride the bike.

Before making any decisions, he should test ride all suggested that he's interested in to pick the one that is most comfortable.

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Old 10-26-07, 09:35 AM   #10
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He probably should look at a bike with a rigid fork, and no suspension with the seatpost. With a steel frame, that will be a tank. Hardrock is good - that's what I started with. But I had a lot of trouble with the stock fork bottoming out when I was at my heaviest. I replaced the fork, but in hindsight, I would have been fine with putting a rigid fork on it.

With the hardrock, the stock wheels held me fine - I did check the tire pressure before every ride and pumped to the max though. I ditched the tires pretty quickly since they are too nobby for my tastes.

The Trek FX series I believe has rigid forks. Something like a 7.3FX might be right on the money if he wants more of a hybrid bike. He'd just have to swap out the seatpost for a rigid one. I chose the Kona Dew over the FX. It fit me better, and cost less, and the components are good enough. Rigid fork, rigid seatpost - no issues.
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Old 10-26-07, 10:50 AM   #11
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I am 330 and ride a Sedona DX (2003 model) and have 3K miles on it. Max I weighed while riding was 365.

Total maintenance other than adjustments and lubing have been to fix a couple of flats, and replace 1 spoke... I also just replaced the chain last week.

Modifications over the past few years have been to go to semi slick tires. After a couple of years, I went to a rigid fork. I enjoy the ride much better now.

I still have the suspension seat post, but after about a year I tightened the suspension portion of it so it is really not a suspension post any more. I would replace the post, but frankly the few ounces don't matte much to me at this point.

It has been very dependable and I would suggest a similar model from any of the major bike store brands. Given my preferences now, I would opt for a 700c model with wide tires (such as the Giant Cypress) stick with the models that have 36 spoke wheels. Any model with a rigid fork would be a plus as well... although most of those are the lower end for some reason. I wish they would have the option of a Giant Cypress DX or LX level with a rigid fork instead of the cheap suspension fork.
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Old 10-26-07, 07:05 PM   #12
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I started out at 375 and road a 2003 Trek 7300 down to 295 lbs where I currently reside. The only issue I had with my bike were the wheels. They were low end wheels and I kept popping spokes. The bike itself has had no issues. Make sure you address the wheels, he will need strong wheels.
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Old 10-26-07, 08:26 PM   #13
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Specialized hardrock is a safe bet. Trade out the mountain tires for some slicks and your brother will be good to go.
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Old 10-26-07, 08:43 PM   #14
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Thanks people, that really helps. Just from looking online he likes the Hardrock the best. However, we'll go and test ride several of your suggestions, and find the one that works best for him.
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Old 10-27-07, 12:19 AM   #15
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A week or so ago there was a post about a guy that I thought was a clyde riding an epic tour on a Novara Safari. These look like they would be a good clyde bike. You would have to get over the Mad-Max-meets-Desert-Storm look of the bike though...

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Old 10-27-07, 07:04 AM   #16
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I would have to go with the above poster.

A touring bike seems to be the perfect choice. It would allow your bro to have a roadbike that can take wider tires and allow him to ride the limestone MUPs. In time, it would probably also allow for some lite singletrack, along the lines of a cyclocross bike (the frames are similar in most cases b/w cyclocross and touring models). And there's always the touring/commuting utility of a touring bike (especially the Surly Long Haul Trucker).

The Safarri would be an excellent choice, though it's basically a touring mountain bike.
The Jamis Aurora (I just picked up one, will post pics soon), and Surly Long Haul Trucker would be road bikes that can do it all. Personally, I'd go with one of those (Aurora or LHT) and have a nice set of strong wheels made.

Seems to me your bro would be happier with a touring bike and nice set of strong built wheels than he would a mountain bike if he's looking to ride on the road. A touring bike will be a bit more expensive, but really, there is no bike out there that's more versatile and seems to do most things very well (I really don't think 3-4 lbs in bike weight will make much of a difference for anyone in the clyde category, especially one who's not at the low end).

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Old 10-27-07, 07:08 AM   #17
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I would have to go with the above poster.

A touring bike seems to be the perfect choice. It would allow your bro to have a roadbike that can take wider tires and allow him to ride the limestone MUPs...

A touring bike will be a bit more expensive, but really, there is no bike out there that's more versatile and seems to do most things very well...
My thoughts exactly, Cheif. It seems like a pretty good deal as well - REI lists this beast at about $850 as I recall. If you can find a pre-built Long Haul Trucker, those tend to be very good deals as well. Don't know about the Jamis, but I've liked the few I have seen around here.
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