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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 08-14-09, 07:09 AM   #1
markdavid570
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New to the Forum...

Hello everyone. I'm new to the forums here. I've looked around before while trying to find some information, but I've only recently actually become a registered member. I posted in the "Introduction" forum and was recommended to come here with some questions. Here's my story...

After graduating college and gaining some weight (I'm 6'5 and currently weight about 265 lbs), I decided to start going for long walks and even try to run sometimes. I loved running even though I only ran a mile or two 4-5 times a week. I wasn't a "runner", but I just liked the feeling. I've had knee problems for most of my life and this made it worse and eventually I realized that I should probably stop. Now I've decided that I definitely need to do something to get into better shape and cycling seemed to be the best option. I live in central PA, so there is no shortage of long, paved, country roads.

I was torn between a hybrid or road bike for my first bike. I started leaning toward a road bike and tried a couple Cannondale CAAD 9s (58cm and 60 cm) and a Scott Speedster S30 (58cm). The smaller Cannondale felt too "cramped" and the larger one felt slightly too "aggressive" for me. The Scott felt great, but I wasn't ready to commit to it at that point. Then I found a dealer closer to where I live that came highly recommended. They sell Trek, Giant, and Masi bikes. I started considering hybrids again and when I was at this new store, I ended up leaving with a Giant FCR 2. At the time I felt like I'd have a better chance of getting more into cycling on a bike that I felt more comfortable on. I also figured since it was less money, that I'd get a better idea of what I wanted and if I'd get that into cycling before spending more money on a better bike.

After riding for about a month or so, I really love it. I'm not looking to race competitively...mostly I just want to get in shape, stay in shape, and have fun doing it. Now I'm to the point where I really think that I want an actual road bike. I like my Giant FCR, but I think I want something slightly more aggressive...but not the point like the CAAD 9. The upright position on my current bike makes it real easy to stop pedaling so much, and as a tall/big guy, I feel like I don't keep my spine as straight as I would on a road bike where I'd be bending more at the hips.

Anyway, the LBS that I go to and want to continue to support deals specifically with Trek, Giant, and Masi (although they don't keep Masi bikes in stock). My current thoughts on a new road bike are:

Giant TCR Alliance 1
Masi Scpeciale 105
Giant Defy
Trek 2.3

I have some thoughts on pros and cons of each bike, but all in all, I'm leaning toward the Giant TCR. I'm just nervous about the carbon parts of the frame...especially with my size and weight, and especially on the back end of the bike.

Anyone have any thoughts? I'll certainly be doing some more research on my own, but I wanted to introduce myself and see if anyone could give some initial advice.

Thanks!
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Old 08-14-09, 07:17 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum! OK, my best advice, since all your options are nice bikes:

Buy the bike that makes your heart race in lust. That's the bike you're going to ride. As to the carbon bits on the Giant? Don't sweat it. CF is used in building jet aircraft. I was a carbon skeptic until I researched it more, and it's actually, in most applications, stronger than steel. This is only accurate if the frame is not crash damaged, though.
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Old 08-14-09, 07:42 AM   #3
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Welcome, and your selection of bikes are nice.

Choose the one you are most comfortable. Also, besides the bikes geometry, take a good look at the wheel set on your bike of choice, (spoke count and diameter of spoke). The last thing you would want to experience is a spoke head popping, or rim damage while on any tire less than 28mm.

I am 6'4" and presently in the 259 - 262 lb range. I set my road bike to more a touring position with bars even with the saddle. I have purchased a newer road bike, but rebuilt a Chro-Moly Schwinn Super Sport for my purposes and have been most happy on tours. I also have a 2007 hybrid that is set for comfort, it is my cruiser and ride when out an about with the wife.
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Old 08-14-09, 07:49 AM   #4
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Greatings from south central Pennsyltucky (HBG area) and welcome to the forums!

I really don't think you could go wrong with any of those bikes you picked out. The defy's are pretty slick as is the the 2.3. Your best bet is going to be to ride each one and pick out the one that is the best combination of comfort, feel, and sex appeal.
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Old 08-14-09, 10:57 AM   #5
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Welcome to the Herd! I'm just gonna go ahead get the formality out of the way in that which ever of your list of possible nice bikes, we will require new bike pics! Happy hunting!
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Old 08-14-09, 12:21 PM   #6
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Welcome.

As was said above, find the bike you like to ride, for fit or form, and that's the bike you'll ride. Riding is the important part.
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Old 08-14-09, 05:30 PM   #7
markdavid570
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Thanks for the replies everyone! I'm planning to get through the rest of this season with my fitness bike and then move to a road bike for the spring. I'm sure I'll be asking more questions between now and then!
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Old 08-14-09, 05:44 PM   #8
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I would get the Masi because "steel is real" and I'm not a weight weenie. You can't go wrong though, they are all nice bikes.
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Old 08-14-09, 06:12 PM   #9
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Good steel is "weight weenie" friendly!

It's like trying on a wedding dress... you'll know the one once you try it out. Most important the bike has to fit. Get the best fit and components you can for the money. When you can spend alittle money on some good wheels and the bike will last you awhile.

Welcome to the group. This is a friendly passionate bunch of great people. Hope to see you post often!
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Old 08-14-09, 07:34 PM   #10
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Personally, I don't think I would have gotten addicted to cycling had I ended up with a hybrid.
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Old 08-14-09, 07:45 PM   #11
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Good steel is "weight weenie" friendly!

That's true! A while back I decided to head up late and drive support for a forum ride thru the mtns. Some dude with another gorup was bonking really bad. Being the sweet guy that I am, I offered him a ride to the village eventhough I had never met the guy.

I lifted his (I think) Ritchie steel bike to load it on my truck. Holy smokes it was light!. I had hard time believing it was steel.

He shook my hand, thanked me then said, "you are one sweet guy!".
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Old 08-14-09, 07:51 PM   #12
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Welcome. I'm your weight but shorter and I ride on a full carbon. Get the bike you want and ride the wheels off.
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Old 08-17-09, 09:50 AM   #13
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Thanks for all the advice everyone! I'm really torn, but I have a few months to decide what I want. I know I need to try some out, so I'll do that more when I get closer.

I'm really okay with my decision to start out on a hybrid. I feel like it was a good way to get started and determine whether I wanted to be on or off the road. With that being said...I want to be on the road!

The bikes I mentioned all have pros and cons to me, so I guess it's a matter of riding them (which will be tough to do with all of them, because most are not all stocked in my size). Then again, size might be an issue...I rode a Scott Speedster S30 (58 cm) that felt great, while a Cannondale CAAD9 6 in the same size felt cramped and uncomfortable. I've looked at the geometry, but I don't know that I can see where all the difference is.

Anyway, my options are Giant, Trek, and Masi...and as I said earlier, I want a road bike, not necessarily with a real aggressive geometry like the Cannondale. But with that, I'm not crazy about how the Giant Defy looks (yes...I guess looks are important to me). Good thing I have some time to figure it out!
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Old 08-17-09, 09:08 PM   #14
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Greetings and welcome from Kimberton! Incidentally, I'm probably passing through Lewisburg on Friday headed to Wellsboro. Care to meet for a short ride?
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Old 08-18-09, 07:02 AM   #15
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Greetings and welcome from Kimberton! Incidentally, I'm probably passing through Lewisburg on Friday headed to Wellsboro. Care to meet for a short ride?
Well, unfortunately (or fortunately...depending on how you look at it) I'll be working all day and hopefully getting out in the early evening.
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Old 08-18-09, 07:35 AM   #16
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Well, unfortunately (or fortunately...depending on how you look at it) I'll be working all day and hopefully getting out in the early evening.
Understood. I need to be near Wellsboro by then so I can set up camp. Sorry!
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