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  1. #26
    Senior Member Pinyon's Avatar
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    If you don't do a lot of your own repairs, then getting a bike from a decent bike shop is a good idea. Well...my favorite bike shop provides excellent service for all bike brands (REALLY fix it, always throw in something extra for free, give great advice about what to do next with problem parts that all brands have, etc.). The only difference between buying a bike with them or not, as far as repairs go, is that you get free spring tune-ups and wheel truing on bikes that you buy from them.

    I really think that you should test-ride lots of bikes. Do it over a couple of weekends, try to hit at least 3 bike shops and multiple brands and MULTIPLE bike styles (plush, relaxed, race, touring, etc.), and then make your decision. If you find a bike brand that you like that is out of your price range, then try to get the same model and size from a previous year on Ebay or Craigslist. You can save a lot of money that way.

    Most of the bike frames that are sold at BikesDirect.com are the same exact ones that are sold by big brands like Trek, Giant, Fuji, etc. The same factories in Asia make a majority of the bike frames sold by most big companies these days. At the bottom of a web page describing a bike model, they tell you what company the bike "fits like", which almost always means that it is the same frame that named company uses for their bikes (usually last-years' frame model for that company). I keep mentioning this, because that is how I would have gone if I did not have a decent older road bike of my own when I started back riding 4 years ago. The bikes that my friends bought through them have been just as reliable as the big brands, and much better than a x-mart bike. Just saying.

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  2. #27
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    Just wondering, have you tried out a cyclocross bike? I know you were asking about road bikes, but I thought that seeing as you already own a mountain bike and presumably like trail riding, you might a bike that performs quite capably on the road ( particularly if you're not looking to race ) yet handles nimbly enough to make singletrack riding a blast. They are built with sturdiness in mind but feel amazingly light after a mountain bike, and the geometry is a little more upright and less forward than a road racer, which I find more comfortable. The other major design bonus is the wide clearances, allowing for wide, even knobby tires ( I love my 700x40's for trails but use 700x28's for everyday street riding ). Have fun bike shopping, I always feel a bit jealous knowing somebody's out buying a bike, so make the most of the experience!
    "Bluegrass is the punk-rock of country!"

  3. #28
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    Don't buy bikesdirect - they cut corners. My 1st road bike - a Windsor Dover - was a nightmare.

  4. #29
    Day trip lover mr geeker's Avatar
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    Last edited by mr geeker; 05-30-09 at 03:42 AM.
    instant human: just add coffee
    trek 830 mountain track - dead

  5. #30
    just pedal donalson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spasticteapot View Post
    Don't buy bikesdirect - they cut corners. My 1st road bike - a Windsor Dover - was a nightmare.

    what corners where cut? you're one of the 1st i've seen who've actualy owned a BD bike who's not liked it... i've been considering purchasing from them
    mtbr clyd moderator

  6. #31
    Senior Member lutz's Avatar
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    I needed a touring bike fast (after my old one broke) about three years ago. The local shops only had touring bikes in ugly grandfatherly brown colors. So I ordered a blue windsor bike from bikesdirect. What I did receive was a purple bike with three deep scratches in the paint and other hallmarks of shoddy assembly. I still have the pictures.
    I might be peculiar, but I am not going to ride a purple bike.
    So the drama of contacting bikesdirect started; long time no answers by email an no way to talk to anybody on the telephone. Finally they accepted my return, which turned out to be expensive. Shipping a big bike by UPS for a private person is quite bit more expensive then it was for bikesdirect and of course bikesdirect also deducted their "free" shipping from the purchase price refund.
    Ordering from bikesdirect is a type of gambling - which becomes actually pretty obvious once you think about their practices.

  7. #32
    Senior Member
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    You can get a CAAD9-7 for around $850 and it is definately a frame that you can build up.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spasticteapot View Post
    Don't buy bikesdirect - they cut corners. My 1st road bike - a Windsor Dover - was a nightmare.
    I'd like to know what corners were cut that caused you woes also. All value-oriented road bikes have cost-cutting. Still, the BD bikes seem to still use better components in their cost-cutting than the big name companies. I know and have met a lot of people that own BD bikes. None of them were disappointed with their purchases. Many are knowledgeable riders as well. Heck, Discovery Bikes carries the same brands as BD and they are a brick and mortar shop.
    Last edited by terbennett; 06-01-09 at 02:55 PM.

  9. #34
    Senior Member lutz's Avatar
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    Have a look at post #31; this is an example of cutting corners. They even cut the telephone lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by terbennett View Post
    I'd like to know what corners were cut that caused you woes also. All value-oriented road bikes have cost-cutting. Still, the BD bikes seem to still use better components in their cost-cutting than the big name companies. I know and have met a lot of people that own BD bikes. None of them were disappointed with their purchases. Many are knowledgeable riders as well. Heck, Discovery Bikes carries the same brands as BD and they are a brick and mortar shop.

  10. #35
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    A Schwinn dealer can get you on a Schwinn Circuit for under $500.00. I didn't see any dealers in WV buy they are in bordering areas
    Whether you think you can, or think you can't, you're probably right

  11. #36
    Argh!someness Village Idiot's Avatar
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    Screw cheap. I went to talk to the guys at Hub City Sports, in Hagerstown, MD, (a plug for any one local to the area who's looking for a bike) about the Felt F85 they had on the floor three weeks ago. They sold it and they ended up not being able to find the availability sheets that one of the other guys that was out for the day usually takes care of. The person I was talking to about the bike said that they would have to wait until Monday to see if they could order one and they would call me then.

    Then the bigger guy that works there (6'1", 6'2"?), the one that seems like a shop manager or something came over and said that he had an '08 Felt F75 that would be a better bike over all. So after talking to him for a bit, he said he could call his sales manager and see if they could get a better price on it as well since it was a left over. I have an F75 waiting to be picked up in about two weeks when I get the money together.

    Now, the main reason I was there was a friend of mine wanted to start riding so he picked up a Trek. I think it's a 4300? The set it up and got evrything to go, and we headed out to the SUV to load up. I forgot to take my bike out of the back so we could fit his. I'm fourtunate that I did that. I had a flat that didn't deflate until after I packed it up. I rolled the dirty (I wasn't planning on having to take it into the shop) bike into the shop and they patched it up. While I was in there waiting, the big guy from earlier asked if I ever had it in for it's tune up after it's first use and I told him that it sat in my parent's garage for about 2 years before I ever took it out to ride. He still did the tune up, tightened the brake cables, adjust the derailuers, etc...

    So far, I've had nothing but awesome service from those guys, much better than the LBS in Martinsburg, WV where they didn't even acknowledge me entering the store.

    So I'm all set....except I got another flat after riding the same day I got it fixed and ended up having to walk back 4 miles on bike shoes with brass cleats...I may need a new pair of those soon...
    I suck at pedaling but man can I coast.

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Village Idiot View Post

    So far, I've had nothing but awesome service from those guys, much better than the LBS in Martinsburg, WV where they didn't even acknowledge me entering the store.
    1. Most LBSes suck. Going to a non-local LBS is often not worth the hassle.
    2. The prices are loco. The cheapest you can pay for a road bike is $500 locally, and in that case quite a lot of components - the derailleurs and crankset - are of suspect quality.
    3. That's at the *cheap* LBS in town that nobody should buy from, unless they're having sale. In which case you're buying the equivalent of an Internet bike at an Internet-bike price....except that you get a free tune-up.

  13. #38
    Tilting with windmills txvintage's Avatar
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    Sounds like you found a good LBS. There are a lot of reasons to maybe pay a bit more for a bike if it helps build a relationship with the right shop.

    Sounds like you found a bike you like and it helped outboth you and the shop since it's a left over. Be sure and post a ton of pics when you get it!

    EDIT: A note on Sora brifters. They work just fine but struggle a bit if you are heavier and trying to shift while climbing. You need to stop pedaling to shift up usually. As Bau pointed out, most folks don't like the thumb shift for down shifting, but if you have ever used Campy it feels very normal.
    Last edited by txvintage; 06-15-09 at 09:01 PM.

  14. #39
    Senior Member Zardhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Village Idiot View Post

    So far, I've had nothing but awesome service from those guys, much better than the LBS in Martinsburg, WV where they didn't even acknowledge me entering the store.
    If you're referring to the LBS (initialed EPBC) in martinsburg, i'm sorry you didnt have a better experience with them...i've dealt with them many times before....the owner has given me price breaks and great service(i and my gf have dealt with them for a year now) I have been toying with the idea of a road bike with them, and get the recommendation of a 29'er instead...but i think its because they've seen the wear n' tear on my trek, and think i'm too heavy for the road bikes they have (alot of carbon fiber, but they got some Fuji Roubaix, C'dale Caad9 aluminum framed rides that i would be more inclined to pedal on) Not Dissing them for that...but that maybe why you didnt get the acknowledgement from them...and i dont know how big a clyde you are...they've also been pretty busy lately...

    Last Saturday, I rode my commuter(Trek 7.2fx) 8 miles into town so that they could check out a rear wheel issue(broken spokes and out of true, and a worn bottom bracket thats been haunting me for quite a while)
    I asked for a loaner and got a vintage Schwinn Traveler III to tool around on for the next couple days till they got my Trek done.... I thought it was going to be a week till i would get my bike back, but on the very same day, no more than an hour from returning home on the Schwinn, I get a call from them telling me my bike was fixed and ready for pickup My bike is in perfect working order and i had a great, clank-free and smooth Monday commute because of the guys at Eastern Panhandle and their professional attention to this Clyde
    Last edited by Zardhex; 06-16-09 at 02:36 AM.
    2007 Trek 7.2FX
    1988 Nishiki Century

  15. #40
    VoodooChile zoste's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Village Idiot View Post
    ....except I got another flat after riding the same day I got it fixed and ended up having to walk back 4 miles on bike shoes with brass cleats...I may need a new pair of those soon...
    Instead of walking, learn how to repair flats...it is an absolute necessity, and really pretty easy once you've seen it done. I never leave home without a tool kit, a spare tube and a frame pump.
    Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand

  16. #41
    Argh!someness Village Idiot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zardhex View Post
    If you're referring to the LBS (initialed EPBC) in martinsburg, i'm sorry you didnt have a better experience with them...i've dealt with them many times before....the owner has given me price breaks and great service(i and my gf have dealt with them for a year now) I have been toying with the idea of a road bike with them, and get the recommendation of a 29'er instead...but i think its because they've seen the wear n' tear on my trek, and think i'm too heavy for the road bikes they have (alot of carbon fiber, but they got some Fuji Roubaix, C'dale Caad9 aluminum framed rides that i would be more inclined to pedal on) Not Dissing them for that...but that maybe why you didnt get the acknowledgement from them...and i dont know how big a clyde you are...they've also been pretty busy lately...

    Last Saturday, I rode my commuter(Trek 7.2fx) 8 miles into town so that they could check out a rear wheel issue(broken spokes and out of true, and a worn bottom bracket thats been haunting me for quite a while)
    I asked for a loaner and got a vintage Schwinn Traveler III to tool around on for the next couple days till they got my Trek done.... I thought it was going to be a week till i would get my bike back, but on the very same day, no more than an hour from returning home on the Schwinn, I get a call from them telling me my bike was fixed and ready for pickup My bike is in perfect working order and i had a great, clank-free and smooth Monday commute because of the guys at Eastern Panhandle and their professional attention to this Clyde
    Only 223 +/- right now. And that's not necessarily a good excuse. My parents love the place. They bought bikes there and think it's a great shop. My experience was not quite the same. Maybe my age and they thought I wasn't looking to spend money. I'm 27 and that's not really young in the grand scheme of things, but I'm their demographic right?

    I'm just glad they can help people though. That's the point of a shop right?

    I also had an awesome experience with Shepherdstown Pedal and Paddle last night. It was the first time I've ever delt with them. HCS replaced my tube from the second flat and when I tossed the wheel on I found out it was out of whack, almost enough to rub the frame (I has low clearance ). I took it to them at 6, went home about 1/4 of a mile away to change, picked it up and went riding. They didn't even charge me. Their main mechanic wasn't there and the guy that was straightened the best he could, which was good, but they said that since it wasn't really perfect that they wanted me to come back in and get it straight and they weren't going to charge me for it. Good guys there.

    Quote Originally Posted by zoste View Post
    Instead of walking, learn how to repair flats...it is an absolute necessity, and really pretty easy once you've seen it done. I never leave home without a tool kit, a spare tube and a frame pump.
    This is high on my list of important things to do. If I was 10-20 miles out with a flat, then that would be in the "call some one and beg like crazy for a ride" territory. I don't want to do that. I'd much rather ride home.
    I suck at pedaling but man can I coast.

  17. #42
    Senior Member Zardhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Village Idiot View Post
    Only 223 +/- right now. And that's not necessarily a good excuse. My parents love the place. They bought bikes there and think it's a great shop. My experience was not quite the same. Maybe my age and they thought I wasn't looking to spend money. I'm 27 and that's not really young in the grand scheme of things, but I'm their demographic right?

    I'm just glad they can help people though. That's the point of a shop right?

    I also had an awesome experience with Shepherdstown Pedal and Paddle last night. It was the first time I've ever delt with them. HCS replaced my tube from the second flat and when I tossed the wheel on I found out it was out of whack, almost enough to rub the frame (I has low clearance ). I took it to them at 6, went home about 1/4 of a mile away to change, picked it up and went riding. They didn't even charge me. Their main mechanic wasn't there and the guy that was straightened the best he could, which was good, but they said that since it wasn't really perfect that they wanted me to come back in and get it straight and they weren't going to charge me for it. Good guys there.



    This is high on my list of important things to do. If I was 10-20 miles out with a flat, then that would be in the "call some one and beg like crazy for a ride" territory. I don't want to do that. I'd much rather ride home.
    I'm 35 and weigh around 245 right now....i'll have to check out the shepherdstown place, sounds like another good shop....i guess you probably came into EP Bicycle when they were heavily bombarded with customers, and i'll admit i didnt buy my bike there (it was from winchester, va in a shop i will never deal with again, after a disappointing day getting my free tune-up from them (those guys gave me the snobby attitude)

    Yeah...definitely get the patch gear and pump, man....it's an embarrassing walk home when you got a flat and no way to fix it
    2007 Trek 7.2FX
    1988 Nishiki Century

  18. #43
    Argh!someness Village Idiot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zardhex View Post
    I'm 35 and weigh around 245 right now....i'll have to check out the shepherdstown place, sounds like another good shop....i guess you probably came into EP Bicycle when they were heavily bombarded with customers, and i'll admit i didnt buy my bike there (it was from winchester, va in a shop i will never deal with again, after a disappointing day getting my free tune-up from them (those guys gave me the snobby attitude)

    Yeah...definitely get the patch gear and pump, man....it's an embarrassing walk home when you got a flat and no way to fix it
    If you're interested, I'm trying to do a towpath ride every Tuesday that it's nice out. I joined a local group and posted up about it. It starts at 6PM and meets at about 5:45PM in the second lot on Canal Rd, which is the first right on 34 coming aross the bridge from Shepherd to Sharpsburg and then the second lot you come to, directly past the railroad bridge.

    I've been doing 20 miles at about 15mph or a little slower, but I'm willing to adjust for other participants if any show up.

    http://www.panhandlepedalers.com
    I suck at pedaling but man can I coast.

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