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Thread: New to riding

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    New to riding

    Hello all. I havent rode a bike in about 10 years. Me and my wife want to get back into it and I found this awesome forum to get started from. I was always sketchy about riding a bike since ive put on a ton of LB's. I was very pleased to see a section here dedicated to bigger folks that like to ride. To be honest, I didnt think there were many out there. Im glad there is some like me that want to ride.

    So, I have NO clue on what kind of bike to get. After reading around on here im leaning towards a mountain bike. The main reason for that is about 3/4 of the time riding will be spent towing my 2 little kids behind me in a trailer. I will probably be doing some very minor off roading(without the trailer of course), but want the option to take off and "go" on the pavement when im by myself and put down some serious miles. Ive read that 2-3 hours a day on a mountain bike can be torture.

    Obviously i need something sturdy and that can hold me, I am 6'3"- 290LBS.

    I will probably be looking around on craigslist for a bike. I have NO idea on what kind of bike size I need. Can anyone tell me what to get for a guy that is 6'3"?

    Im not a hardcore rider(yet), just looking to get my feet wet.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    Welcome newbie db0723
    My wife and I just got back in cycling after 20 years and I found this forum about 2 months ago. Great bunch of folks hang out hereabouts. I'm just learning 2009 bikeology, but a number of intelligent and witty people will address your question. My initial reaction from what I've read is that there are options between road bike and mountain bike that will better suit your needs. Use the search function. You will find many responses to very similar questions.
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    SERENITY NOW!!! jyossarian's Avatar
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    At your height, I'd suggest a 29er hardtail. Go to the LBS, try every bike that catches your eye, come back here, use the search function to look up the ones you liked, then go back, ride again, ask questions and choose.
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    Lance rides a Trek. Buy a Trek.

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    Tilting with windmills txvintage's Avatar
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    Meh, don't get too caught up in teh first one and don't spend the kid's college fund on the first one either. Save all that for the second one, lol.

    Craig's List is a good plan, providing you have an idea about what you are looking for and what size you need. It won't matter how expensive or how economical a bike is if it doesn't fit. A $75 CL bike that fits will trump a 3K bike that doesn't.

    At 6'3" I wouold guess you're at least a 60cm size in a Roadie. I'm not too literate on moutain bikes so it would be better for me to defer to those know more about them.

    No matter what you buy, you will end up needing some accessories. I would use this as justification/rationalization to borrow some of your local bike shop's time and expertise. Make some visits and get a feel for the ones you have locally and ask questions. Maybe even test ride a couple if you're not taking time away from other customers who may be buying a bike. When you eventually get a bike, use them for your "stuff" supplier.

    What ever you end up with for your first one, you can count on getting the desire to either change or upgrade somewhere down the road. This is why I suggest doing some bargain hunting for the first one. CL is full of bikes folks bought, rode for a couple of weeks, and banished them to the hoks in the garage.

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    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    Okay let me get this straight...
    Quote Originally Posted by db0723 View Post
    • So, I have NO clue on what kind of bike to get.
    • about 3/4 of the time riding will be spent towing my 2 little kids behind me in a trailer.
    • I will probably be doing some very minor off roading (without the trailer of course),
    • want the option to take off and "go" on the pavement when im by myself and
    • put down some serious miles.
    • Ive read that 2-3 hours a day on a mountain bike can be torture.
    Exactly why do you want a mountain bike again...?

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    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard_Rides View Post
    Lance rides a Trek. Buy a Trek.

    Not a good answer in my opinion.
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    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    Go to multiple LBS's and tell them what you are wanting to do. Then go back to the store that treated you the best and get a bike in your budget that does what you need it to do, or at least what you think you need it to do.

    I am 6'3" and only a 33" inseam. I ride XL frames in mountain bike, or 21" depending on the manufacturer. I ride a 61cm road bike.
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  9. #9
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by flip18436572 View Post
    Not a good answer in my opinion.
    I think the poster was trying to be snarky.

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    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Look for something like this one.
    If you plan to ride many miles, you want a road bike.

    http://houston.craigslist.org/bik/1020077662.html
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by db0723 View Post
    Ive read that 2-3 hours a day on a mountain bike can be torture.
    Untrue - if the bike is the right size. A lot of people have done long rides on mountain bikes, myself included. You can find MRBs used on craigslist inexpensively. I'd stay away from suspension frames.

    If you want to buy new, you can check out the Trek Navigator. It's a popular bike, and a good starter bike. You can get last year's model for around $400 if you shop around. Historian, how is the Navigator for off-road?
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  12. #12
    Neil_B
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    Untrue - if the bike is the right size. A lot of people have done long rides on mountain bikes, myself included. You can find MRBs used on craigslist inexpensively. I'd stay away from suspension frames.

    If you want to buy new, you can check out the Trek Navigator. It's a popular bike, and a good starter bike. You can get last year's model for around $400 if you shop around. Historian, how is the Navigator for off-road?
    How off-road is the riding? It's an upright bike designed for gravel and cinder bike paths. That said, we both know an Athena who rode it on the GAP and C & O. It's a good bike, although it's heavier and slower than many others.

    I agree the poster is needlessly concerned about the comfort of mountain bikes.

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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard_Rides View Post
    Lance rides a Trek. Buy a Trek.
    The OP posted an honest question. Either help the guy out or just ignore it. This forum in particular is no place for such non sense.

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    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garysol1 View Post
    The OP posted an honest question. Either help the guy out or just ignore it. This forum in particular is no place for such non sense.
    Yes. Thus follows the humor. Richard isn't serious. We're walking, we're walking...
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    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    Yes. Thus follows the humor. Richard isn't serious.
    The OP is new here and does not know Richard or his humor. Humor only works when both sides get the joke. With that said.....Let's get back to helping the guy and sorry if I came off to strong.

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    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Well, Richard has 33% of a good response.

    Who cares what Lance rides.

    Trek makes very nice bikes with an excellent warrenty (if OP buys news)

    Richard neglected to mention which model to buy. This is where I'll step in The riding the OP described sounds like a great canidate for a Trek 7.3FX. It's hybrid bike combining the speed of a mountain bike with the controls and relative comfort of a mountain bike. It will handle light trails, and by light I mean some rails-to-trails...don't single track it. The beefy fork on the lower models in my opinion is better suited to the riding style OP mention vs the carbon forks on the higher models. They are geared well, able to take racks, look sharp, and priced moderatly well vs the competition. In addition OP can fit some cross tires on it as needed plus it will have better road manners than any mountain bike.

    Bau

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    You may find that a two-bike solution works much better than one bike. That's not unreasonable if you are going the used route. Fifteen-twenty year old hardtail mountain bikes are a very good place to start and are underpriced relative to other used bikes. You should be able to find a decent one for about $100. Back then the rims were built beefier than modern weight-weenie mt bikes. Also, the upright riding position works well for a Clyde just getting started.

    Ride the heck out of that for a few months and then look for a used road bike on Craigslist. A 1980s steel bike can be had for $150 or so. It should be much easier for you to get in a tuck position on the drop bars after you've been riding hard for half a year.

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    Triathlon in my future??? flip18436572's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
    I think the poster was trying to be snarky.

    With the Lance picture, I took it completely different.

    My bad.
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    Hey guys, Thanks alot for your help and suggestions. I was looking around on Craigslist and saw a wide variety. The reason I was asking what size bike a 6'3" guy should fit on was so I could narrow my search down a bit while looking on craigslist as I have no idea what to look for. So far i heard something like a XL for mountain bikes and 53-60 cm bike for roadbikes. Another suggestion I was looking for was which type of bike is better for lugging around a child trailer when im doing that part of the riding time.

    I am open to buying a "new" bike if its under the $500 range. I am also open to swapping tires/wheels when i want to "offroad" or "street" ride only.

    Thanks again guys, i'll keep checking back here .

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    Hello again, Was wondering if any of you can give me some opinions on this bike from craigslist. Is it good for the price and my size? Wanted to see what you guys think before I head over there for a test ride.

    http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sby/bik/1023221018.html


    Thanks again.

  21. #21
    Senior Member CACycling's Avatar
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    21" is in the ball park for your height. You said you were told XL for MTBs, this is good advice. 21" + is usaly considered XL But 53 - 60cm for a road bike is just wrong. I'd be surprised if you would be comfortable on anything smaler than 60cm and might need to go even larger.

    The asking priceon the bike you linked seems to be on the high side but you are in a market where that may be as good as you can expect. The only real negative is that at your weight, a suspension fork isn't going to do much but that could be swapped out for a rigid fork if you so desire.

    This will be great to start you out. It will help you get started getting in shape, it will make a good tow vehicle for your kids' trailer and will help you in figuring out what you want your next bike to be when you get the urge to start racking up some real miles. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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    Thank you. I suppose I could of bought a brand new bike for a few hundred more. I went ahead an got this one. When I went to look at it, and rode it, it felt really smooth. Gears changed smoothly and tires are new. Seat was a little hard, but that can be replaced easily. Maybe someone can recommend a seat for a big butt like mine?

    I will take your advice on swapping out the forks after I put some miles on it and see what I like and dislike.

    Again thanks everyone for your advice. I will keep you posted here.

  23. #23
    Senior Member CACycling's Avatar
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    Congratulations!
    Quote Originally Posted by db0723 View Post
    Seat was a little hard, but that can be replaced easily. Maybe someone can recommend a seat for a big butt like mine?
    It may seem counterintuitive, but a firm saddle is your butt's best friend. You want support. You want to sit ON the saddle. Too soft and you'll sink into it and it will put pressure on the soft tissue instead of your sit bones.

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    Ya know, ive heard that before. Thanks for reafirming it.

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