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Thread: N00b

  1. #1
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    N00b

    Hey guys.

    I'm looking at getting back into bicycling after a long time off (like 20 years). Last bike I had was a Motobecane Grand Tour (when they were still French bikes) from the 70's. Great bike.

    Anyways, things have changed in a big way in bicycling. There are more options to choose from than I could ever imagine way back when. Heck, what's so complicated about a frame, two wheels, a set of handlebars, some gears and a chain?

    Apparently quite a bit.

    Ah well. I've been poking around Craigslist (no joy, a few scams), ebay, this site (love the FAQ, perfect for this fat boy - skeerin' the heck out of 300 lbs). Stepping onto the scale at the doctor's office the other day scared the heck out of me. I'm a prime candidate for a heart attack in my 50's, and I'm 43 now. I'd like to get another 20 years if I can. Preferably 30 years. Ya know what I mean?

    I'm glad I found this forum. There are plenty of resources for skinny kids that road race carbon fiber speed bikes, but for painfully slow old guys? Not many.

    I've pretty much chucked the idea of buying used at this point. Right now I'm leaning towards a hybrid bike outfitted w/ baskets that I can use to peddle to the grocers, work and around town. I don't see myself riding for distances greater than 10-12 miles at a stretch for a while.

    Eventually (if I get into it and enjoy it as much as I used to like riding a bike when I was a kid) I might get a decent frame and build a good road bike. While that seems a bit expensive it sure looks less expensive than buying a nice one outright from a bike shop.

    I found a bike that looks interesting and I was wondering if anyone has any experience with the manufacturer? The bike is a Redline R510. If you check out the URL, it's the bike pictured in the lower right hand side of the frame. The bike shop wants $340 and they'll set it up for me. I don't know if that's a decent deal or not (quality of the components, etc).

    I've looked online and from what I can see Redline made its name in dirt bikes and has relatively recently expanded into street/hybrid bikes. There are plenty of good reviews of their bmx/motocross bikes, but I can't seem to find any reviews of their street/hybrid products.

    So I thought I'd ask in here.

    If y'all think I can do better for less than $400, I'm all ears.

    Anyways......great forum. I loved the "before & after" photo section. Y'all are enough to give a guy some hope, ya know?

  2. #2
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkippyX View Post
    Hey guys.

    I'm looking at getting back into bicycling after a long time off (like 20 years). Last bike I had was a Motobecane Grand Tour (when they were still French bikes) from the 70's. Great bike.

    Anyways, things have changed in a big way in bicycling. There are more options to choose from than I could ever imagine way back when. Heck, what's so complicated about a frame, two wheels, a set of handlebars, some gears and a chain?

    Apparently quite a bit.

    Ah well. I've been poking around Craigslist (no joy, a few scams), ebay, this site (love the FAQ, perfect for this fat boy - skeerin' the heck out of 300 lbs). Stepping onto the scale at the doctor's office the other day scared the heck out of me. I'm a prime candidate for a heart attack in my 50's, and I'm 43 now. I'd like to get another 20 years if I can. Preferably 30 years. Ya know what I mean?

    I'm glad I found this forum. There are plenty of resources for skinny kids that road race carbon fiber speed bikes, but for painfully slow old guys? Not many.

    I've pretty much chucked the idea of buying used at this point. Right now I'm leaning towards a hybrid bike outfitted w/ baskets that I can use to peddle to the grocers, work and around town. I don't see myself riding for distances greater than 10-12 miles at a stretch for a while.

    Eventually (if I get into it and enjoy it as much as I used to like riding a bike when I was a kid) I might get a decent frame and build a good road bike. While that seems a bit expensive it sure looks less expensive than buying a nice one outright from a bike shop.

    I found a bike that looks interesting and I was wondering if anyone has any experience with the manufacturer? The bike is a Redline R510. If you check out the URL, it's the bike pictured in the lower right hand side of the frame. The bike shop wants $340 and they'll set it up for me. I don't know if that's a decent deal or not (quality of the components, etc).

    I've looked online and from what I can see Redline made its name in dirt bikes and has relatively recently expanded into street/hybrid bikes. There are plenty of good reviews of their bmx/motocross bikes, but I can't seem to find any reviews of their street/hybrid products.

    So I thought I'd ask in here.

    If y'all think I can do better for less than $400, I'm all ears.

    Anyways......great forum. I loved the "before & after" photo section. Y'all are enough to give a guy some hope, ya know?
    Welcome!

    You might want to look at the Trek 7100. It's priced comparably, and I know it's good because a friend rides one. You will find a lot of bikes like the Redline model you are considering in the under 400 dollar range.

  3. #3
    Disgruntled grad student beingtxstate's Avatar
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    I agree with The Historian, there are tons of options at your price point.

    My two pick (no bais, as you can tell from my sig):

    Trek 7100
    Trek 7.2FX

    Both are good bikes, the 7.2FX might be a little more expensive that $400, but not by much. I use mine for everything, groceries, commuting, joy rides, intervals...it doesn't matter, this bike does it. I use a reak rack with two folding baskets and trekking bars to make the bike suitable for whatever tickles my fancy at the minute.

    Some other bikes that are popular around that price point:

    Jamis Coda
    Electra Townie
    Craiglist Specials...

    Good luck and welcome to the forums!
    1990 Trek 330
    2006 Trek 7.2FX
    2006 Trek 7.3FX (Wifey's Steed)

  4. #4
    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    If you are very serious about the weight loss and getting healthy, spend the money on a good bike from a LBS that you like. I bought a Jamis Ventura Sport because the other dealers were not much on me asking questions. I blew up the bottom bracket on the bike and they LBS got me a frame upgrade at no cost. I blew up the stock wheels in the first 500 miles and they upgrade me at no cost. OK, at no cost to me. What did they get out of it, a customer for life, and a lot of very good references.

    I think find an LBS first and then look at their brand selection. There are a lot of good bikes in the price range you are talking.

    Good luck with everything.
    2007 Jamis Ventura Comp
    2006 Jamis Explorer 2.0
    2000 Specialized Hardrock (bought used)
    Swim, Bike, Run and sounds like fun

  5. #5
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    SkippyX,

    WELCOME!

    Word of advice. Test Rides! Test Rides! Test Rides! This will do a few things for you. You will find out quickly what you like and dislike about a bicycle, the Shop and the salesperson in short order. Look for a bike that you WANT to ride, Look for a Shop that is willing to work WITH YOU, and a salesperson that understand your needs. It is a tall order to be sure.

    I wish you luck!
    A Mess of old bikes...
    92 Trek 970
    08 Gary Fisher Paragon

  6. #6
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forums, always nice to meet and greet and new member.

    I checked out the link you provided and it looks like you picked out a pretty nice bike. It should be very comfortable and a breeze to ride about on. The only thing I can think to suggest would be immediately ditching the suspension seat post. At your weight a front fork with a lock out (or at bare minimum the ability to adjust it really stiff) should be a priority. On the down stroke of your pedal the fork will bob which takes energy away from the down stroke which could be applied to forward momentum. The picture at the link you provided makes it difficult to tell if the fork has adjustment knobs on it.

    At 400 your right in the ball park for the Specialized Hardrock Sport which seems to be the official clyde ride around here. It is a mountain bike but is definatly rugged enough for even the largest clyde. If you wanted to stay around 400 in the comfort bike category then check out the Trek Navigator 2.0 or the Raleigh Venture 4.0. Any of these bikes would be great choices for you.

    Bau

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    Wow - thanks for the suggestions!

    I cruised around the forums looking at what folks had to say about the Treks and they seemed to be well-liked. So, I hopped in the truck and drove to The Bike Barn (LBS in Houston - small chain, really) and took a look at the 7.2 and the 7100. The lady I was dealing with suggested I take them out and ride them around the parking lot. I tried them both out.

    I wound up buying a 7100. It was $80 less expensive than the 7.2, $30 less expensive than Redline and I didn't scratch my head and say "who?" when I saw "Trek" on the side of the bike. Hard to go wrong there, from what I've heard at any rate. The 7100 seems to be more aimed at road riding than the R510 (skinnier tires). Looks to be a good commuter bike.

    Of course, I had to load up on accessories (bike lock, water bottle, kickstand, lights front & back), and I still came in well under that $400 mark I didn't want to go over.

    I'm well-pleased.

    OK - Now I'm off to bed. It's almost noon and I have to be up @ 6:00 p.m. to get ready for work (night shift).

    Thanks again! I really appreciate the assist!

  8. #8
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Forum, Skippy! Looks like the guys have already started helping you
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  9. #9
    Mega Clyde bigwies's Avatar
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    OK, here is my $0.02. I just started riding again in August after 25 years off a bike and have a Trek 7100. It is a very comfortable bike and is a good choice for the distances you are looking to ride. I weigh in at about 3300 and overall I really like my 7100. It is very comfortable on 5 to 15 mile rides and I have even done a few rides between 20 and 25 miles. No comfort issues to speak of, but I have had an issue with popping spokes on the rear wheel. My LBS has since upgraded that wheel to the wheelset used on the 7200 or 7.2 FX. I would spend the little bit of additional money now to have those wheels from the beginning. The only other big difference is a solid fork (7.2 FX) vs. a suspension fork (7100/7200).

    It is amazing how quickly you can build up your stamina if you get out there and ride. I did just over 1000 miles in 2007 on my 7100. I am planning some longer rides for 2008 for my 7100 and will probably add some bar ends for extra hand positions. If I keep it up, I am also looking at a road bike in the future. Probably a touring bike of some sort (Trek 520, Surly LHT or Jamis Aurora).

    Good luck.
    Big Wies

    Surly Long Haul Trucker
    Trek 7100

  10. #10
    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    You paid for a water bottle? Those things are usually free w/ the purchase of a bike. If not, tell 'em you want one or you'll walk. Afterall, it's got the LBS name on it so you're advertising for them. Anyways, make sure you get the bike set up for max comfort and ride it the same way you rode as a kid. Ride to your friends houses, the store, the park, trails, etc. And wear a helmet. I noticed that was missing from the list of accessories.
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  11. #11
    Disgruntled grad student beingtxstate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkippyX View Post
    Wow - thanks for the suggestions!

    I cruised around the forums looking at what folks had to say about the Treks and they seemed to be well-liked. So, I hopped in the truck and drove to The Bike Barn (LBS in Houston - small chain, really) and took a look at the 7.2 and the 7100. The lady I was dealing with suggested I take them out and ride them around the parking lot. I tried them both out.

    I wound up buying a 7100. It was $80 less expensive than the 7.2, $30 less expensive than Redline and I didn't scratch my head and say "who?" when I saw "Trek" on the side of the bike. Hard to go wrong there, from what I've heard at any rate. The 7100 seems to be more aimed at road riding than the R510 (skinnier tires). Looks to be a good commuter bike.

    Of course, I had to load up on accessories (bike lock, water bottle, kickstand, lights front & back), and I still came in well under that $400 mark I didn't want to go over.

    I'm well-pleased.

    OK - Now I'm off to bed. It's almost noon and I have to be up @ 6:00 p.m. to get ready for work (night shift).

    Thanks again! I really appreciate the assist!
    Congrats SkippyX! Now, your bike doesn't exist unless you post pics of it on here for us to admire (bike pron)

    Happy riding!
    1990 Trek 330
    2006 Trek 7.2FX
    2006 Trek 7.3FX (Wifey's Steed)

  12. #12
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Welcome to BF and to the Clyde forum. Looks like I'm to late to come preach the gospel of Raleigh hybrid bikes but it sounds like you already got set up with a quality ride. I have 4 bikes and I can honestly say that my hybrid (08' releigh detour deluxe, the cadilac of hybrids) is my favorite. You'll be amazed a how quickly you can build strength and stamina if you ride regularly and the hybrid offers comfort that those racier bikes can't touch. I'm sure you'll get many miles of enjoyment out of it.

    I know you just spent a lot of money on a bike but there are a few items that many new cyclists don't purchase that can really help you enjoy your bike more. I'm going to throw these out here and you can draw your own conclusions:

    Bike shorts. I know for us "big guys" the thought of wedging our butts into lycra pants and parading around the neighborhood is not a pretty one. Bike shorts can really add a level of comfort to your rides though. You can wear loose fitting shorts over the cycle shorts or you can get "MTB style" shorts that are baggy but offer the same benefits. Bike shorts are definatly something that ALL cyclists can benefit from, not just "hardcore" riders. (I order mine from Aerotech Designs but there is a list at the top of the clyde forum with links to other clyde-friendly cycle clothing producers)

    Air Pump. From your previous cycling experience I'm sure you are aware that bike tires need to be inflated often (about once a week for me). You may already own a pump but if not it is a worthwhile investment because propper tire pressure makes a world of difference in how long and how far you can ride.

    Helmet. As another forum member put it... "The neat thing about brain injuries is that they usually only happen once." Neat Fact: All helmets sold in the US have to pass the same safety standards so a $13 helmet from walmart is just as safe as a $200 helmet from your LBS.

  13. #13
    Mega Clyde bigwies's Avatar
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    +1 on bike shorts. I got mine from LL Bean and they look like regular shorts.
    +1 on the Pump. I have a floor pump for home and a mini pump on my bike. These can be ride-savers.
    +10 on a helmet. I rode w/o one for a while, but that was a big mistake. I don't ride anywhere w/o one now.
    Big Wies

    Surly Long Haul Trucker
    Trek 7100

  14. #14
    Senior Member JohnKScott's Avatar
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    Welcome & congrats on the new ride. Ride it a bunch. Before you know it you'll want a new bike. Or is that just me projecting?


  15. #15
    NadaKid wayne pattee's Avatar
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  16. #16
    Pants are for suckaz HandsomeRyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnKScott View Post
    Before you know it you'll want a new bike. Or is that just me projecting?
    No, you are correct. I joined a year ago and I'm @ 5 bikes and counting. The people here are not a good influence on my wallet.

  17. #17
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forums!!!

    Stick with us and we'll help you out however we can with bike modifications, accessories, clothing, riding tips, etc.


  18. #18
    Lanky Lass East Hill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ang1sgt View Post
    SkippyX,

    WELCOME!

    Word of advice. Test Rides! Test Rides! Test Rides! This will do a few things for you. You will find out quickly what you like and dislike about a bicycle, the Shop and the salesperson in short order. Look for a bike that you WANT to ride, Look for a Shop that is willing to work WITH YOU, and a salesperson that understand your needs. It is a tall order to be sure.

    I wish you luck!
    I don't think there's much more that needs to be added except:

    Before photos, so that we can compare for the eventual later photos.

    And,

    Welcome to BikeForums!

    East Hill
    ___________________________________________________
    TRY EMPATHY & HAVE LOVE IN YOUR HEART, PERHAPS I'LL SEE YOU ON THE ROAD...

  19. #19
    Vorsprung durch Technik epcolt's Avatar
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    Welcome, I have a Specialized Crossroads. Might be right for your needs.Comfortable and adjustable. I agree on riding as many bikes as you can.
    epcolt
    WV Trailrider
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  20. #20
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    Thanks for the welcome y'all!

    I took the bike out for a little ride today. Nothing dramatic. I just wanted to get out on it. It's been a long time since felt that warmth in the top of my thighs saying "um....stop....you're making us work, ya #$*#*."

    It's 43 degrees and a bit drizzly here today, so I sure wasn't going to be out on it for long. It's supposed to be rather nasty out for a few days yet. Ah well.

    I did enjoy it. The seat came loose, so now I've got to tighten it up a bit. No big deal, I think it just wasn't tightened down enough prior to leaving the store.

    All in all I'm well pleased with the bike. I've been driving some odd routes home from work, scouting out nice places around Houston to peddle around. I think I've spotted some likely locations.

    OK - I'm off - 'tis bedtime!

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