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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 05-31-08, 05:50 PM   #1
albertinnyc
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Used bike for a 300# 6'3" newbie

First thanks to everyone for a great community and wealth of information. I spent the past several hours reading up the past few weeks of "New bikes for big guys" threads.

The info I think I learned was:
1. Most good bikes are satisfactory for my size.
2. If I want to spend a little extra, upgrade the wheels and tires.
3. Check the local used market for a cheap(er), used bike before investing big in a new one. (Then sell the used bike for nearly what I paid)

I'm having a tough time deciding between a road bike and a mountain bike, so I hope to go the used route, if I can find one. Right now, I expect to ride on local roads (very well paved) 95% of the time, and take it to a mountain maybe three times a year.

The other trouble I'm having is with sizing. With a used bike, there is no bike store associate to help me. Plus there are all kinds of different numbers (i.e. 24" vs. 57cm vs. 16/17/18", 19ers, etc.) Finding it hard to compare apples with apples. Which sort of makes me want to go to a lbs.

Either way, can't wait to get on a bike. Anybody riding in the Fairfield Co. / Westchester Co. area?

cheers,
Albert

Last edited by albertinnyc; 05-31-08 at 06:01 PM.
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Old 05-31-08, 06:11 PM   #2
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It sounds like a road bike might fit your profile the best. No shame in going to the LBS to get some help. That is what you pay extra for. You want to get a road bike that fits well.

Later in the summer you can shop around for a used mountain bike or pick one up from BikesDirect if you feel like riding some singletrack. They are easier to fit and work with.

You could think about a cyclocross bike that would allow you to ride both.
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Old 05-31-08, 07:09 PM   #3
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Do a search on sizing, you will find a lot of info out there on it. For me, my mountain bike is an 18 incher, while my road bike is more like 21 inch (54 cm).

+1 since you are talking pavement, might as well get a road bike. FWIW, I have set up my mountain bike (Craigs List find) as a back up road bike, with slicks. Kind of a neat bike, but not as practical as a pure road bike.

I am a big fan of the used market, both Craigs List if you are in a hurry, and the thrift store/garage sale route if you have more time (sometimes a lot more time) to find a bike. So I would probably get the first bike on C/L.

But if you are looking for personalized help, then go to a local shop and build a relationship with them. Recognize they have rent to pay, so expect to pay more for this service.
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Old 05-31-08, 07:10 PM   #4
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Here's what I got my stepdad. He's 6'4", 260 lbs, and has a 35" inseam. (Saddle is way low 'cause I rode it home from the shop. )



I found the Univega Maxima Sport frame on Craigslist. I'm not sure of the year, but it originally had 27" wheels. The guy I bought it from swore it was a 65 cm, but I measure it at 64. It had no wheels, and that was perfectly fine because I was going to have a set built. For the front wheel, I had them use a 105 hub, 36 spokes with a Mavic A119 rim. The shop had a 40 hole used tandem hub, so I had them use that along with a Mavic A719 rim for the rear. I got a pair of Schwalbe Marathons 32 mm wide for the tires. It needed new rear brakes because of the reach, but I left the rest alone. I figure he'll decide for himself how he wants the bike set up. I expect he'll put on a rack and possibly fenders. We'll see if he decides to go upright or not.

BTW, it's a total surprise. He and my mom are coming to Portland on Monday for my brother's wedding. He used to have a road bike but now believes he's "too big" and would break one. Thanks to the Clydes of BF, I knew better. I don't see him "breaking" this one. My mom's really excited - we went halves on the wheels.
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Old 05-31-08, 10:14 PM   #5
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Hey the A119 are a good wheel, I have a set on my hybrid, just be aware, they are soft and hard to true, I ended taking mine into the LBS to true and they even had a heck of a time getting them done. Good move using the A719 on the back, much better wheel.
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Old 05-31-08, 10:33 PM   #6
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Good to know and I'll pass that along. When my stepdad is done riding here, the shop wants me to take the wheels back for their post-build adjustment, so they'll at least be in good shape pre-Detroit area streets.
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Old 06-01-08, 04:02 AM   #7
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Keep in mind that 2.54CM = 1"
Depending on how "leggy" you are, you probably want something in the range of 21-23" or 54-60 CM as a rough guide. 2 different 54 CM bikes may feel very different. Road vs MB will be different.
I'd suggest getting a bike that allows you to raise the seat enough to fully extend your legs. You can always get a different stem if the reach is too unsatisfactory.
That's one of the reasons I suggest a used bike for the first one. It's a learning curve to figure out what size fits you best.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:28 PM   #8
albertinnyc
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How about these two

All, thanks for the advice. Since asking, I have found out there are apparently several good, somewhat technical trails to do around here, including one only 2 miles from my house. What a surprise.

Even considering, I agree that until I'm back at home in the saddle, a used road bike is probably my smartest first investment.

And so I wanted to ask if anyone would comment on the suitability of either of the following two candidates. The first is a cyclocross bike (thx v1k1ng1001 for the idea), while the latter is a pure road bike, 3 years older but CF frame. Price is roughly equal on these two. Thanks in advance!!

1) Specialized TriCross Sport (61cm Frame)

Frame: Specialized A1 premium aluminum
Fork: Specialized FACT carbon w/aluminum steerer, SpeedZertz inserts
Rims/Wheels: Alex ACE-19
Hubs: Specialized sealed
Spokes: 14-gauge stainless-steel
Tires: Specialized Borough CX, 700 x 32c
Crankset: FSA Vero
Chainwheel: 50/39/30
Front Derailleur: Shimano Sora
Rear Derailleur: Shimano Deore LX
Rear Cogs: Shimano HG-50, 9-speed: 11-34
Shifters: Shimano Tiagra STI
Handlebars: Specialized Comp, 31.8mm
Tape/Grips: Specialized Body Geometry Bar Phat, cork ribbon
Stem: Specialized Sport
Brake Levers: Shimano Tiagra w/Tektro bar-top
Brakes: Tektro Oryx cantilever
Saddle: Specialized Body Geometry Avatar
Seat Post: Specialized carbon

-- or --

2) Specialized Roubaix Elite (58cm Frame)

Frame: Specialized compact design, high modulus advanced carbon composite monocoque frame, advanced composite seat stays with Zertz inserts
Fork: Specialized Full Carbon Zertz, monocoque high modulus advanced composite legs, high modulus carbon threadless steerer
Headset: FSA Sealed Bearing Integrated
Stem: Specialized Comp, 31.8mm bar clamp, 4-position adjustable, 4-bolt, 100 mm
Handlebars: Specialized Zertz Roubaix, racing drop, 31.8mm diameter, 44cm wide, 14 cm drop
Front Brake: Shimano 105
Rear Brake: Shimano 105
Brake Levers: Shimano Ultegra, STI 9Spd
Front Derailleur: Shimano 105, 31.8mm clamp, bottom pull, (triple)
Rear Derailleur: Shimano Ultegra, long cage (triple)
Shift Levers: Shimano Ultegra, STI, flight deck compatible 9Spd
Cassette: Shimano 105, 9-speed, 12x25t
Chain: Shimano HG 73
Crankset: FSA SLK Carbon Mega EXO Triple, 175mm
Chainrings: CNC machined 7075/T6 chainrings, 52x42x30 (triple)
Rims: Alex ALX-295, 700c, alloy double wall, machined sidewalls
Front Hub: Alex ALX-295, 20 hole, sealed bearing, silver
Rear Hub: Alex ALX-295, 24 hole, sealed bearing freehub, silver
Spokes: Alex bladed stainless steel, alloy nipples
Tires: Bontrager race Lite HardCase
Saddle: Body Geometry Avatar, microfiber, hollow Cr-Mo rails, 143mm wide
Seat Post: Guizzo Carbon 27.2

[ EDIT: I suppose one thing to consider is which parts I would want to replace anyway, i.e. the Roubaix appears to come with only a 20 spoke wheel, and the Tricross appears to come with a 32. I believe I would have to replace the Roubaix wheels, while perhaps the Tricross wheels would support me? Same though with the crankshaft, though I have no idea to compare those. ]

cheers,
Albert.

Last edited by albertinnyc; 06-02-08 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 06-02-08, 05:41 PM   #9
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Either one will be a good bike. I'm a little concerned about the light wheels (low spoke count) on the Roubaix, though. All I can say is get the one you love after a ride.
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Old 06-02-08, 06:19 PM   #10
albertinnyc
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All I can say is get the one you love after a ride.
OK, now I get it. Most folks buy used locally, so you can test drive, right? That coincides with what I've seen on craigs list (i.e. free test ride). I could not find anything locally, but found these two across the country, and was going to have one of them shipped. But then no test drive. Maybe that's not such a good idea.
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Old 06-02-08, 06:31 PM   #11
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I think once you're comfortable on a bike, know your sizing, and can even wrench a tiny bit a cross-country purchase woudln't be a bad thing, but for your first ride try hard to get on the bike before buying. I ride a Specialized bike that should be on paper too big for me but because of my proportions it fits like a glove. I almost went the online route but for my first real fit, after reading here, realized nothing beats riding a bunch and getting the hang of things.
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