Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    BikeNewbie stark23x's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hamden, CT USA
    My Bikes
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Posts
    132
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Wanna start serious research on buying a bike in the off season

    I'm planning to buy a bike during the cold New England months, mainly because that's when I'll be able to save enough to make it worth looking, but also in hopes of getting a deal on older stock before the new season. My brain is mud at this point with options and models and too many choices. SO...I was thinking maybe if I laid out what I'm looking for, some of you kindly folk could point me toward possibilities?

    What I want:

    1. Steel. I'm 250 now, and will remain somewhere between 190 and 220 for the next few years. Steel is smoother. And stronger. I have no idea what abuse I may give a bike as I get stronger and faster, but I know I'm never going to care about a pound or three of frame weight. I'd prefer the strength. But if someone has a good argument why I'm crazy and aluminum would be just fine, I'm all ears.

    2. Some speed. I don't need a race-ready speed demon, but it would be nice if I could coax a little speed out of the bike without pushing myself to my absolute limits just to see 25MPH.

    3. Quality components. I'd say somewhere in the Deore-level would be about where I want to start. Not partial to Shimano over SRAM though. And as many gears as I can get, because I have no idea where or how I will be riding in say, 18 months.

    4. Places for all sorts of Fred gear. Racks, fenders, lights, what have you. Attachment points for all this stuff would be important.

    5. I tend to favor distance over speed, and my goal is to ride centuries (more than likely slow ones...at least in the next couple of years). So comfort would be a consideration, although I know that is mostly a matter of fit and adjustments.

    I don't know if I want a hybrid with road bars or 26" fat tires or maybe 700c wheels with flat bars...it's so freaking confounding now and I have talked myself into loving so many different bikes that if I were a rich man, I would have at least five brand new bikes right now.

    Models I have liked but are all aluminum:

    Trek FX 7.3
    Kona Dew Drop
    Jamis Ventura Comp
    Marin Venezia
    Marin Portofino

    Oh in case it's not obvious I am partial to red. That would be a huge bonus, if the perfect bike came in red.

    So...if you owned a shop and I came to you, to what would you steer me?
    JimK
    MadeofAwesome.net
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Eternal vigilance is the price of butter.

  2. #2
    member. heh. lambo_vt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Williamsburg, VA
    Posts
    1,631
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    There's really no need for steel. It's fine (my road bike is steel), but this frame material thing gets really blown out of proportion on BikeForums. Aluminum and carbon and titanium and who knows what else can be made plenty strong and can be made to ride plenty supple.

    That said, look at the Jamis Coda line; they seem like they meet all your requirements. If you're genuinely interested in comfort for long distances, I'd recommend drop bar touring bikes (Surly LHT, Jamis Aurora, Trek 520, etc).

    In fact if you're not absolutely (for some reason) set on flat bars, consider going with drop bars if you don't already have a bike with them. Yes, plenty of people seem to prefer flats and ride thousands of miles with them, but there's a reason so many cyclists doing long distance and racing use drop bars. And, there's a reason why most people posting threads complaining about wrist pain are riding flat bars...

  3. #3
    BikeNewbie stark23x's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hamden, CT USA
    My Bikes
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Posts
    132
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by lambo_vt View Post
    There's really no need for steel. It's fine (my road bike is steel), but this frame material thing gets really blown out of proportion on BikeForums. Aluminum and carbon and titanium and who knows what else can be made plenty strong and can be made to ride plenty supple.

    That said, look at the Jamis Coda line; they seem like they meet all your requirements. If you're genuinely interested in comfort for long distances, I'd recommend drop bar touring bikes (Surly LHT, Jamis Aurora, Trek 520, etc).
    I have liked the look of the Trek 520. Seems to have a lot going for it. I'd also love to see what price I could get on a 08 Jamis Coda Elite or Aurora. Good suggestions.

    Quote Originally Posted by lambo_vt View Post
    In fact if you're not absolutely (for some reason) set on flat bars, consider going with drop bars if you don't already have a bike with them. Yes, plenty of people seem to prefer flats and ride thousands of miles with them, but there's a reason so many cyclists doing long distance and racing use drop bars. And, there's a reason why most people posting threads complaining about wrist pain are riding flat bars...
    I am coming to that same conclusion myself. I think drops might be a smarter move for me for the long term.
    JimK
    MadeofAwesome.net
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Eternal vigilance is the price of butter.

  4. #4
    member. heh. lambo_vt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Williamsburg, VA
    Posts
    1,631
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by stark23x View Post
    I am coming to that same conclusion myself. I think drops might be a smarter move for me for the long term.
    Smart move

  5. #5
    Senior Member cod.peace's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    eastern Massachusetts
    My Bikes
    Rans V-Rex
    Posts
    999
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by stark23x View Post
    I have liked the look of the Trek 520. Seems to have a lot going for it. I'd also love to see what price I could get on a 08 Jamis Coda Elite or Aurora. Good suggestions. .
    The 520 is an excellent bike that's been produced without many changes for what, 25 years? (except for the newest one, I think they mucked with the frame geometry for '09). I owned one for a while last year and really liked it before upgrading to a recumbent.
    old steel Specialized Hardrock

  6. #6
    Senior Member snowman40's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    My Bikes
    Fuji
    Posts
    1,135
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    REI has some bikes that might fit....

    Here's a shiny red one......http://www.rei.com/product/775742

    I'd get this or the Trek Portland, although, the almost 1 grand more in cost for about the same seems puzzling to me....
    Quote Originally Posted by snowman40
    If you must speed up to pass me, you don't deserve to pass me
    Quote Originally Posted by abstractform20 View Post
    farts are greatly appreciated as long as the other riders are talented and experienced. at the precise moment of release, a vacuum is formed. this is the optimal time for the rider behind you to get as aero as possible and "ride the brown rhino". his face should be within 2-3mm of the anus to receive maximum benefit (reduced drag...duh, its in a vacuum). i have hit speeds of over 53mph in such conditions.

  7. #7
    member. heh. lambo_vt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Williamsburg, VA
    Posts
    1,631
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Also look at the Novara Randonee. Ugly as sin but a nice ride... I rode a 2008 and came this close to picking it up.

  8. #8
    just pedal donalson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Kemah, TX (greater Houston area)
    My Bikes
    Surly Disc Trucker, Klein stage comp, trek 560
    Posts
    902
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    no one has bothered to ask... what does your LBS(s) carry?

    also what kind of budget are you looking at?

    it realy sounds like you are looking for a touring bike... on the road drop bars are nice... flat bars don't give you much in the way of hand positions... and when you are on the bike for long distances you want options...

    as for steel vs alu... I prefer steel... but honestly your saddle choice makes MUCH more of a difference then your choice of material will...
    mtbr clyd moderator

  9. #9
    BikeNewbie stark23x's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hamden, CT USA
    My Bikes
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Posts
    132
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by donalson View Post
    no one has bothered to ask... what does your LBS(s) carry?

    also what kind of budget are you looking at?
    I can get access to Specialized, Giant, Marin, Jamis, Trek, Schwinn (the LBS level stuff), Fuji, Felt, Scott, Norco, Raleigh and Cannondale locally. Lotta LBS' within a 25 mile drive!

    Price? Probably hovering around $1000. I have a lot of the extras already, so this would be pretty much for the bike and possibly a saddle swap if needed.
    JimK
    MadeofAwesome.net
    2009 Giant Defy 3, 1983 Trek 850, 2008 Schwinn Sidewinder
    Eternal vigilance is the price of butter.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pinyon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Posts
    1,380
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I agree that you don't have to go the steel route. Frame geometry and how it is put together is much more important than what the frame is made out of. The most important thing is how it feels and fits when you test ride them. Test ride LOTS of bikes.

    If you are looking to save money, then look at bikes that did not sell like they thought they would. Every bike shop has such bikes. For instance, some people are still wary of Schwinn and Raleigh brands since they came back onto the market after a down-sizing or selling-off of the company, but the reviews from bike owners of their new bikes over the last 2-3 years has been great.

    Other advice includes not falling in love with one model or paint color, and it is better to spend an extra $100-$200 to buy a bike from a bike shop with a great reputation for repair and warranty, than to buy a cheaper bike from a place with a lesser reputation. Decent bike shops around here also offer stuff like free annual tune-ups and wheel truing, and further discounts on gear and such when you go into the shop. They also won't steer you towards a bike that does not fit, or suit your needs. They are more interested in your long-term business, than making a quick sale or getting rid of bikes that nobody wants.

    Good luck.


    My Bike Blog
    ------
    1987 Trek 1000 Aluminum
    1993 Cannondale M300
    2008 Specialized Allez Elite Compact

  11. #11
    Member ldeg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montreal
    My Bikes
    CAAD9 5
    Posts
    42
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Steel is a good choice, Jamis have great bikes, if you dont mind Alu minium frames, Cannondale probably maker the better ones out their... look at the Cannondale touring or Synapse 7 if you want something sportier (it comes in red too...)
    Try them it's the best way to figure it out, do it before the snow!!!!

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    2,013
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    1. Steel. Go with steel as there is no point paying extra to knock 5 lb or less off your frame when you weight 200+ wo gear.

    2. Some speed. It is not like cars, most of a bike's speed has to do with the rider. What you want is a bike that is comfortable and easy to maintain. You can have different wheels for different riding conditions. Much of 'speed' is just using high pressure road tires on a true wheel.

    Consider folding bikes as they are easier to transport and store.

    See what's on craigs list.
    2000 Montague CX, I do not recommend it, but still ride it.
    Strida 3, I recommend it for rides < 10mi wo steep hills.
    2006 Rowbike 720 Sport, I recommend it as an exercise bike.
    1996 Birdy, Recommend.
    Wieleder CARiBIKE (folding), decent frame.

  13. #13
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    The NC Mountains
    My Bikes
    Too many to list, all vintage
    Posts
    19,388
    Mentioned
    54 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Consider a used bike. I see mid grade or better steel bikes for sale around here for under $300, often $200 or less. Start watching Craigs List.

  14. #14
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Wilmington, DE
    My Bikes
    2008 Surly Long Haul Trucker, 1999 Jamis Exile
    Posts
    2,846
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It looks like you are leaning toward touring, sport-touring, oor perhaps cyclocross type bikes Stark23x. When I was shopping for a new bike (around September 08 to December 08) I started to run into some problems: 1) some types of bikes I was looking for were sold out. 2) Some bikes in my size range were also sold out.

    I would suggest you get an idea of what type of bike you may want and then go test ride as many as you can before the sizes or types become sold out. Also take notes on such things as; the type of bike ridden, where it is located, size, $$$, frame material, geometry, specs, overall feelings (comfy, smooth, fast, quick handling, etc.), or whatever else you feel is important.

    I did a similar thing using an excel spreadsheet. I was able to look at my notes later and re-testride some bikes I wanted to as well as cross other bikes off my list. I could also compare the specs or geometry or whatever else pretty quickly without having to go to each manufacturers website.

    My suggested bikes based on your post would be: Surly LHT or Crosscheck, Jamis Aurora, Trek 520, Bianchi Volpe, Cannondale T2, Specialized Tricross. I am not familiar with some of the other bikes or manufacturers so I won't comment on those.

    Good luck Stark23x

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •