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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 11-14-08, 07:21 AM   #1
TechKnowGN
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Can I do better than this?

I have a LBS with a Kona Dew 08, out the door for $400 (including tax). I put it on hold last night with a small deposit (so I dont miss out on the last one), and I have 7 days to decide.

What I'm wanting is to have my Christmas dollar go as far as it can. Can I find a decent Hybrid for less than this? Considerably less ($300ish?). Im not a bike snob, so I just want good, not great. Even average will work, as this isn't going to be my last bike. I am a bike snob in training though, so the idea of staying away from Schwinn is appealling.
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Old 11-14-08, 07:30 AM   #2
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I have a LBS with a Kona Dew 08, out the door for $400 (including tax). I put it on hold last night with a small deposit (so I dont miss out on the last one), and I have 7 days to decide.

What I'm wanting is to have my Christmas dollar go as far as it can. Can I find a decent Hybrid for less than this? Considerably less ($300ish?). Im not a bike snob, so I just want good, not great. Even average will work, as this isn't going to be my last bike. I am a bike snob in training though, so the idea of staying away from Schwinn is appealling.
I suppose Trek and Specialized are also on the 'ignore' list? I've heard a bike snob call Treks "the Toyota Corolla of bicycles", whatever that means.

Why don't you consider the Kona "great?" If the bike does what you need it to do when you ask it to do it, it's great.

That said, that's a good price for a hybrid.
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Old 11-14-08, 07:32 AM   #3
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It's not a bad price......so, we come to the crux of the question:

Does it call out your name and say "Buy me"? You need to fall in lust with your bike, you know.
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Old 11-14-08, 07:41 AM   #4
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Kona is quality bike. They are less marketed than a Trek or Specialized, but in my opinion that makes them even more cool from a uniqueness point of view.

Gotta love the model names too.

Your price point of $400 is probably close enough in ball park that time invested to find a better deal is probably going to reach a point of diminshing returns if shopping new. Since it is a left over it should be discounted unless your market is one where bikes fly off of the floor as soon as they hit the LBS. Do you know what the MSRP on the 08 Dew was?
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Old 11-14-08, 07:53 AM   #5
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I suppose Trek and Specialized are also on the 'ignore' list? I've heard a bike snob call Treks "the Toyota Corolla of bicycles", whatever that means.
Something that does the job just fine and runs forever?
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Old 11-14-08, 07:54 AM   #6
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Something that does the job just fine and runs forever?
My thoughts exactly.
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Old 11-14-08, 08:08 AM   #7
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Specialized and Treks are not off my lists, I just assumed with Trek at the local Trek store Id be paying the more for the same amount of bike or paying ther same for less bike.

To me, Schwinn is the Hyundai of bikes. Trek has a fantastic brand name at least to me (like say a Cadillac or that range), and Specialized is somewhere in between. (Which may again point to my experience level).

While I havent been to every LBS in town, I havent seen a lot of specialized. The local Performance Bike carries GT but I don't know what to think of them, as I have no experience. The same LBS that has the Kona has some Giants (Sequoia, Boulder, etc.) but doesn't seem to have any Hybrids in that range.

Can I get a similar Trek or something like that for less?

Also I watch Craigslist daily, but its been a no mans land for bikes of that ilk for my size.

TX - The price seems to be about 10 % off of what they had on it retail.

Tom - Somewhat yes, but I know that a similar bike for a lower price will make me drool even harder, and I have 7 days to find one!

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Old 11-14-08, 08:54 AM   #8
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I'd definitely shop around, but the Dew is a nice ride. I was very happy with my Trek FX, for what it's worth, but I never could stop thinking about what I always should have bought - a Surly LHT. The FX was a very nice ride, though, did many long rides and enjoyed it quite a bit. Heck, at times I even find myself almost missing the thing. Strange, I know, but that's what you get.

I'd suggest trying one out. I know The Historian is a big fan of his as well.
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Old 11-14-08, 09:06 AM   #9
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My thoughts exactly.
Heh. I own a Matrix and love it.
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Old 11-14-08, 09:15 AM   #10
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Specialized and Treks are not off my lists, I just assumed with Trek at the local Trek store Id be paying the more for the same amount of bike or paying ther same for less bike.
I wouldn't assume that, just as I wouldn't assume that the price over the internet or at a big chain store will be less than the independent LBS. I've experienced otherwise. I mean, you seem to want to wrassle $400 for a good new bike (which seems like a good price to me) down to $300, so if you're gonna look around...look around.

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To me, Schwinn is the Hyundai of bikes.
Someone posted once, in this or another forum, about how the "Schwinn" name is associated with more than one manufacturer with quite a range of quality, so "Schwinn" doesn't mean anything specific quality-wise.

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Can I get a similar Trek or something like that for less?
Maybe. Maybe not. I guess my point would be, as a n00b, how much do you really have to strain at getting the very "best" bicycle for the least amount of money? I put "best" in quotes for two reasons: 1)it's all relative to the use to which you will put it -- what's "best" for one use is not "best" for another -- and 2)as a n00b, there are a lot of nuances of what makes one bike "better" than another that you will not appreciate. Furthermore, when you're talking nuance, you're also talking personal preference: you could select a bike based on a more experienced rider's judgment of what's "better", only to find when you get to that point in your riding that the stuff they care about is of no matter to you.

Bottom line, while you don't want to just throw $400 away on the wrong bike, don't spend too much time trying to figure out things that you don't really have the data or experience to figure out at this point. Don't agonize over the "best" bike; there are a number of options that are plenty good enough, so find one of those at a price you're comfortable paying, buy it, and start riding.
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Old 11-14-08, 09:18 AM   #11
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My thoughts are that the LBS makes more of a difference than the bike "Brand" name. I own Jamis brand, because that was the best bike shop for me to deal with in the Omaha/Council Bluffs area. The quality of service means a lot to me. The bike frames might be different in geometry, but as long as you get a bike that will fit you, I could care less what it says on the frame. I have friends that own Trek, and other brands, but we don't care what each other has for a name on the frame.

Good luck with your purchase and go with what you feel is best.
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Old 11-14-08, 09:33 AM   #12
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Yeah I wanted to take long term service into account, but we're moving next year for Grad School, and I don't know where yet. Wont possibly until 2/1/09. Dont want to wait that long to buy.
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Old 11-14-08, 10:43 AM   #13
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My thoughts are that the LBS makes more of a difference than the bike "Brand" name. I own Jamis brand, because that was the best bike shop for me to deal with in the Omaha/Council Bluffs area. The quality of service means a lot to me. The bike frames might be different in geometry, but as long as you get a bike that will fit you, I could care less what it says on the frame. I have friends that own Trek, and other brands, but we don't care what each other has for a name on the frame.

Good luck with your purchase and go with what you feel is best.
+1 on choosing a good LBS.

A little story to back this thought up......when I was looking for my first bike, I went to the three bike shops in C'dale. One is a high end shop that carries alot of the roadie/weight weener stuff. They prices are the same as the MSRP. They are a good shop and very helpful. They carry Raleigh's and I wish I bought the Passage 4.0 there, but I didn't. The second bike shop was the mountain bike store. Again, they were great folks and very helpful. Prices were a little bit better than MSRP and they had alot of bikes to choose from. The third shop was just a bike shop. They didn't specialize in anything, if they did I guess it was just regular folks or newbies. I asked several questions, they answered them, and I rode bikes for several days. I finally asked them what is the "real" differance between all of the bikes I've been riding, bith there and at different shops. The owner took me over to a big book. It had several makers and models, all under $600. And about 90% of the frames could be traced back to two factories in China.

If you take a close look, most of the hybrids (which I like BTW, and seem to be in the minority), in your price range, are made the same as any other. Hell, most have the same frame! Its the componets that makes the the differance in the ride and the price.

So, try and choose a decent LBS. Go with their "brand" in your price range. I would get the best drive train and BB that I could afford. I would skip disc brakes and add ons like racks what nots, if price was a concern. You can add them on later, if you feel like it. You might pay a little more later, but its an instant savings.

As for Schwinn, they come out of the same factories as TREK and others in the same price range. Schwinn is putting out some nice bikes, in the $1000 range, just like other brands.

I would ride any hybrid in your price range and have. I had a GT Nomad. The only reason I don't have it is because I didn't look a to make sure it could take a back rack. For the $375 OTD price I paid for it, it did a great job and I finished every ride I ever started with it.

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Old 11-14-08, 10:45 AM   #14
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As for the Dew. Its a nice bike. I rode a Dew Plus a few weeks back and really liked it. But, it was from the high end shop and the price was a bit high. But the price you quoted is decent, based on the prices around here.

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Old 11-14-08, 12:20 PM   #15
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I didnt know the frames were all coming from the same factories. Is there some way to trace this to know whos getting the same frames? I recognize that I may be buying slightly cheaper components but I've learned in my time at the co-op how easy it is to replace the components later.
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Old 11-14-08, 01:05 PM   #16
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Something that does the job just fine and runs forever?

This makes me laugh because I have both a Toyota Corolla and a Specialized Mid 90's Rock Hopper bike
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Old 11-14-08, 01:14 PM   #17
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Konas are great. I ended up with one because it came from an LBS i like, they had the other bike i wanted to test ride and they let me take it for a half-day.

Biggest issue is the LBS and fit. Fit is absolutely critical. The best bike for you is one you like riding, and one that fits.

Konas are a little different, a little counter-culture and tend to be a little less expensive for the same component level than the big 3 (giant, specialized, trek). They also tend to have some interesting innovations, design choices made, etc. Around here at least, they also tend to not stay around very long. I had a tough time finding the one I wanted and ended up working the phones.

At a decent price from a good shop -- if it fits -- I wouldn't hesitate.
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Old 11-14-08, 01:32 PM   #18
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Hmm, 10% off retail. They may not have their frist run of 09 bikes in yet. Other wise I would think the mark down might be a bit more, depending on markets.

The point about Kona offering better components for the price level vs other manufacturers was something I meant to bring up earlier. They are a lot Like Felt in that the bang for the buck is usaully pretty good.
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Old 11-14-08, 02:01 PM   #19
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Is there someplace other than coming here and saying "is the Shimano XXy242 Super Deraileur better than the Shamino XXt242 Super Derailer?" where I can know by looking if my components are on the same level?
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Old 11-14-08, 02:21 PM   #20
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I have a Schwinn Circuit that cost me over $500.00. It has been flawless in 1,500+ miles. fwiw.
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Old 11-14-08, 02:24 PM   #21
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Hmm, 10% off retail. They may not have their frist run of 09 bikes in yet. Other wise I would think the mark down might be a bit more, depending on markets.

The point about Kona offering better components for the price level vs other manufacturers was something I meant to bring up earlier. They are a lot Like Felt in that the bang for the buck is usaully pretty good.
They have a mix of the 08 and 09 bikes. Not too many of the 09 Konas in yet, no. And no Smoke which is a bit closer to what I have now in my MTB, but wanted to give it a ride anyways.

Im stopping in to the Trek Store and Performance (theyre like .2 miles from each other) after work and seeing what theyve got thats comparable but perhaps a bit cheaper.
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Old 11-14-08, 02:28 PM   #22
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Here is a link for bike components ratings http://circlecitybicycles.com/bikecomp.htm

You won't do any better. Run now, buy the bike, and don't look back.
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Old 11-14-08, 02:46 PM   #23
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Here's one if it is yoru size. Asking 5 offer 4 and you have similar bike with better components and a little less granny gear. http://columbus.craigslist.org/bik/914600871.html
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Old 11-14-08, 03:13 PM   #24
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Speaking as a Schwinn owner, they're not all X-mart bikes. They have a nice line of "select" bikes sold only at bike shops. They have dealers on North High st. and one on Riverside dr.
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Old 11-14-08, 05:55 PM   #25
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So I found an 08 Fuji Absolute 4.0 for $250 brand new. Assuming I'm ok with upgrading components over time, what do we think about this frame? I know the components arent amazing, but they'll work to start and I get access to quality used components from time to time with the bike co-op.

http://www.fujibikes.com/LifeStyle/R...bsolute40.aspx
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