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  1. #1
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    New member advice please

    Hi all, new member here.
    I would like some advice please and thought this was the best place to ask.

    Iím 6 foot and weigh about 300lbs or as near as dam it.
    I would like to get a bike to help with getting my weight down as well as general fitness.

    I live in an area which has a few inclines, not hills as such, and am generally pretty healthy although obviously no athlete.

    I am looking for something that is rock solid (obviously) but have no idea as to what I actually want.
    Frame size, wheel size, tyres, gears, suspension, and of course which make.

    The maintenance side of it I can pick up as I go but donít have an all-round clue about anything else so without any advice I donít know what to look at etc.

    So I'm after specifics and any help.

    Many thanks.

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the forums. What type of riding do you plan on doing?
    It is not about the destination. It is about the journey getting there.
    Competitors work until they get it right, but champions work until they can't get it wrong.

  3. #3
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    Just around town and maybe a venture into the countryside when the weather gets better.
    Nothing over the top in terms of mileage, but thought I would replace the car when doing small trips of a few miles each way.

    I forgot to mention that I don't really have a bugget because as I'm serious about this I have set my goals on actually doing it, so if it cost more than I thought so be it.

  4. #4
    Senior Member c_m_shooter's Avatar
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    Start with an old rigid mountain bike. You should be able to pick one up for about $150 on Craigslist. Throw on some slick tires, ride it for awhile and see what you like and don't like about it, so you have an idea what you want when you go shopping for a new bike. You'll probably end up looking at hybrid bikes unless you want to do some serious mileage- then you would want a road bike. All the manufacturers make pretty comparable models, but if you want a good entry level new bike you will probably spend about $500.
    May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.
    May your mountains rise into and above the clouds. -Edward Abbey

  5. #5
    Neil_B
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    First, Mr. Morphy, while I'm pleased to meet you, I have to confess I'm surprised you are posting here. From your photo I'd not have taken you to be a Clydesdale:



    I suggest you get either a mountain bike or a hybrid, either second hand or new. Entry level for both kinds of bike are in the 250 to 500 range new, and much less second hand. Pick up a helmet, spare tubes, and a multitool.

    BTW, I love your 17.... Queen takes Bishop in your game against Paulsen:

    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1242884

  6. #6
    Banned. Mr. Beanz's Avatar
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    For God's sake, don't get a run of the mill one size fits all bike from Wallyworld or Target etc. Get a bike that fits. You are 6 feet tall so yo will need a 56-58 cm bike (roadbike) or a 19 inch mountain bike. Most new riders have no idea that bikes are actually sold by size unlike on the rack Wally bikes. Not that I wouldn't ride a Wally bike but the correct size is a huge difference in enjoyment and comfort!

  7. #7
    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    Know your size range and what a properly fitted bike feels like. Deals can be found on used bikes but a poor fitting bike is just a waste of good money. With a poor fitting bike you will not ride it.
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
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  8. #8
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    The Historian:
    My death in 1884 was very exaggerated and over the years I have put on a tremendous amount of weight basically because of my addiction to peanut butter and jelly sandwiches - like my good friend Elvis who currently lives next door.
    Thanks for the replies folks, and I guess this type of question has been asked a million times before, so pardon my ignorance.
    Currently there seems to be some good deals on Bikes from new, and although I’m not a stranger to riding (although it has been a long time away), I am ignorant of manufacturers names and everything else.
    Is there an idiots guide on here (link) where I can sift through some stuff and get some idea without asking to many basic questions?

  9. #9
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    Frame: Specialized A1 Premium Aluminium, fully butted, reinforced disc mount, forged dropouts with replaceable hanger, disc only Fork: SR Suntour SF8-XCT-V2, 80mm, One piece alloy lower, 28mm Hi-Ten stanchions Front Derailleur: Shimano Altus Rear Derailleur: SRAM X-4, mid cage Shifters: SRAM X-3, 7-speed trigger Chainset: SR SunTour, square taper spline Chainrings: 42t x 32t x 22t chainrings Bottom Bracket: Sealed cartridge, square taper Cassette: SRAM PG-730, 7-speed, 11-32t Chain: KMC Z7 with reusable Missing Link Pedals: Composite cage and body, 9/16" Front Brake: V brake, alloy linear pull, 1pc. pad Rear Brake: V brake, alloy linear pull, 1pc. pad Brake Levers: Alloy, linear pull Handlebars: Hi-Ten riser bar, 32mm rise, 640mm wide Stem: Forged alloy Headset: 1-1/8" threadless, loose ball Grips: Specialized Enduro, dual compound Kraton Rims: Alex Z-1000, 26", alloy, single wall, 32h Front Hub: Forged alloy, double sealed, steel QR, 32h Rear Hub: Forged alloy, double sealed, steel QR, cassette, 32h Spokes: stainless Front Tyre: Specialized Fast Trak LK Sport, 26x2.0" Rear Tyre: Specialized Fast Trak LK Sport, 26x2.0" Tubes: Schrader valve Saddle: Specialized XC Seatpost: Alloy two bolt, 12.5mm offset, micro adjust Seat Binder: Alloy QR, nylon washer Notes: Chain stay protector, reflectors, clear coat, owners manual Weight: Weight for Medium Version - 29lb 2oz / 13.2kg

    This is a Specialized bike 2010.

    Is this something near what I need?

  10. #10
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Looks like you're looking at a Hardrock. It's a good choice but you may find that the suspension fork is going to...suck. That's going to be a common ailment until you start wandering into the mid-range bikes.

    The hardrock is an excellent choice. There are many riders here who were much larger than you who started with the hardrock. For the type of riding and self confessed ignorance, I would really recommend you buy a new bike from a shop. First, you're going to get a proper fitting which is key to rider comfort. Second, buying a used bike is a real crap shoot, sure you can get a smoking deal from time to time, but unless you really know what you are looking at it's a huge gamble that might end up costing you more than a new bike.

    If you want to stick with Specialized, I would go with their Hybrid, the Sirrus, for your first bike. http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?spid=45858&eid=4356&menuItemId=9260 The sport model looks like a nice bang for your buck if you can swing the price. Personally I find an expensive bike to be a good motivator to get out and ride.

    Inner monologue to follow:

    "Hey bautieri, you paid XXXX for that bike. Go for a ride and get your monies worth out of it"

    "Ok brain, you win this battle"

  11. #11
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    I'd definately go to a bike shop and try a few different rides out. You mentioned that money isn't an object at the same time, many people new to the sport (myself included) may not fully realize just how expensive bikes can get.
    I got a giant rapid 3 flat bar road bike for $549 and so far love it. I'm 6'3" 250 (actually, already down to 242 after some good aggressive riding the past week!) I live in NYC so a mtn bike would be desireable for durability purposes because the roads are so bad but I needed light weight for carrying it upstairs and for speed since I use it to commute all over the city to train my clients.

    I looked around for used bikes but at 6'3" there was nothing remotely close to my frame size. I'm very glad that i went to the shop for my first bike purchase just to get reacquainted with all the new technology on bikes since I really haven't ridden a bike since I was a teen and even then I only had huffys! I'm looknig at getting a dedicated road bike and when I do that I may go the internet route because I'll feel comfortable wrenching them myself or even if I don't wrench them myself, the ongoing cost to my lbs to tune it and work on it will sort of be like financing the bike. I can get a better bike for less money upfront and spread out the maintenance costs as I go along as opposed to spending twice as much upfront but getting free service for as long as I own the bike.

  12. #12
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    Is there an idiots guide on here (link) where I can sift through some stuff and get some idea without asking to many basic questions?
    This is very old, but will help to get you oriented: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...tickies-linked. Scroll down to "Bikes and Riding" and "Bike Buying".

    In general, get an idea as to what kind of riding you want to do - it sounds like a hybrid or a mountain bike with slick (i.e., smooth) tires is your best bet.
    Tour Journals, Blog, ride pix

    I'm in the celtic folk fusion band Baroque and Hungry. "Mended", our new full-length studio album, is now available for download.

  13. #13
    A Mountaineering thing Hillbasher's Avatar
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    Nice link

  14. #14
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    I did read quite a lot of that link so thanks.
    The impression I’m getting is sort of a mix and match components. This frame, those forks, don’t get those gears, have the wheels changed, etc etc.
    Isn’t there such a thing as a make and model that is good enough right out the factory? I’m even confused now about which category I need. Touring, MB, Hybrid?

  15. #15
    Wookie Fred chewybrian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    I did read quite a lot of that link so thanks.
    The impression Iím getting is sort of a mix and match components. This frame, those forks, donít get those gears, have the wheels changed, etc etc.
    Isnít there such a thing as a make and model that is good enough right out the factory? Iím even confused now about which category I need. Touring, MB, Hybrid?
    It is a little tricky. On the mid-range bikes, they might cheap out on some components, like wheels. On the high end, things tend to get 'racing light', and maybe not so clyde friendly, like low spoke count wheels.

    Touring, mountain or hybrid would all work for now. After you've been at it for a while, you'll know what type of riding you enjoy, and then one of these (or something else) will be right, and you'll know it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    ...I forgot to mention that I don't really have a bugget because as I'm serious about this I have set my goals on actually doing it, so if it cost more than I thought so be it.
    Spending cash up front will not increase your commitment level. Commit to riding 5 or 6 times a week, and have fun with it. There's plenty of time to lay out the cash when you know what you're buying, and why, and you've proven to yourself you can stick with it.

    Quote Originally Posted by c_m_shooter View Post
    Start with an old rigid mountain bike. You should be able to pick one up for about $150 on Craigslist. Throw on some slick tires, ride it for awhile and see what you like and don't like about it, so you have an idea what you want when you go shopping for a new bike...
    ^^^Jackpot.
    Campione Del Mondo Immaginario

  16. #16
    Just Plain Slow PhotoJoe's Avatar
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    Been lurking for a while, but decided to jump in here. I agree whole-heatedly about riding several to see what's most comfortable. I'm 6'2" and 230. Back in 1998 or so, I bought a mountain bike. Wanted a Canondale in the worst way...just because...well....because. That's all. Rode it, but the lady at my LBS really encouraged (forced) me to ride a few others just to make sure I knew what I was doing. Rode a Specialized Rock Hopper A1FS and fell in love. So much more comfortable for me. It turns out the Canondale geometry stretched me out too much, but until I rode something else, I didn't realize it. I still ride that bike today.

    With that said, I regret buying that bike. I THOUGHT I would love mountain biking. Turns out....it's never touched the dirt. Should have bought a rode bike. Oh well. Doing my research now and will buy one soon. I miss riding with groups.

    Good luck in your decision. Be safe.

  17. #17
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    I agree with the mountain bike idea. Though I started riding my klein right around 300 mountain bikes are better for general purpose.

  18. #18
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    Been reading a lot and come to some conclusions - am I right?

    1. Road bikes are out. Period. I would have opted for one of these because I had one as a kid, but it looks like unless I have one built, or buy one and swap everything off it to make it a tank, my weight will crush it after a few miles?

    2. Hybrids are fine but again I need to change a few things right away?

    3. MBís are my best choice and upgrade as I go?

    I know some say to get a used bike and go from there, or buy cheap, but I cant get away from setting out a big budget in the first place or I will be disappointed.
    If things need to be swapped or have a bike upgraded at the start, then it looks like a really big budget needs to be in place already.
    I donít have a problem with any of that, but I donít want to overkill either.

  19. #19
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    Been reading a lot and come to some conclusions - am I right?

    1. Road bikes are out. Period. I would have opted for one of these because I had one as a kid, but it looks like unless I have one built, or buy one and swap everything off it to make it a tank, my weight will crush it after a few miles?


    Why are they out? Your weight won't even come close to crushing it. Avoid potholes, have the wheels tensioned and trued after 100 miles and even the stock wheels should last you quite awhile.

    2. Hybrids are fine but again I need to change a few things right away?


    Hybrids are fine and dandy. You shouldn't have to swap anything out right away if you follow the advice above. Keep the rubber side down and you’ll be alright.

    3. MB’s are my best choice and upgrade as I go?


    Yes and no. That really is debatable. A mountain bike is defiantly the most stout of all the choices you listed, however it is going to come with its own shortcomings. Mainly the stock suspension forks will do little for a larger rider. They will bob up and down as you pedal which robs your efficiency. This is corrected by forks that have a lock out. But if you're going to ride a locked out fork on the pavement...you're better off with a hybrid. It will be faster, even moreso if it's red! Now, once you buy the mountain bike you fall in love with, buy high psi slicks, and swap the fork for something more robust...well...you'll have spent quite a bit of money to get the mountain bike to act and ride like a hybrid. Unless you see yourself riding a significant amount of trails (that are more technical than a crushed limestone rail trail) you're probably going to be best off with a hybrid. Wheels can be built up, but to answer another question, the frames on a hybrid and a road bike will support your weight and then some with no problem whatsoever. So really you need to get to a shop and start test riding some bikes. Don't limit yourself to one grouping, go and buy what makes you feel best

    If you have a Kona dealer nearby check out the Hoss!

  20. #20
    Downtown Spanky Brown bautieri's Avatar
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    *Edit*

    Double post, if a mod is availible please feel free to remove.
    Last edited by bautieri; 04-01-10 at 05:33 AM. Reason: Double post awesomeness!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    Been reading a lot and come to some conclusions - am I right?

    1. Road bikes are out. Period. I would have opted for one of these because I had one as a kid, but it looks like unless I have one built, or buy one and swap everything off it to make it a tank, my weight will crush it after a few miles? Not at all, people were just saying that when you see a $5000 road bike it's going to have ultralight everything and specifically the way to lighten up wheels is to use fewer spokes but being heavier us clydes need to have higher spoke counts.

    2. Hybrids are fine but again I need to change a few things right away? a hybrid could be a good starter bike option.

    3. MB’s are my best choice and upgrade as I go?
    personally, unless I knew I was going to be doing SIGNIFICANT riding on dirt trails I'd shy away from the mountain bike.
    I know some say to get a used bike and go from there, or buy cheap, but I cant get away from setting out a big budget in the first place or I will be disappointed.
    If things need to be swapped or have a bike upgraded at the start, then it looks like a really big budget needs to be in place already.
    I don’t have a problem with any of that, but I don’t want to overkill either. Whatever you choose, you should be able to start out nicely equipped for under $1000. For me personally the accesories are where the costs started to add up, helmet, chain&lock, Pinhead security skewers, seatbag, etc Take decent care of your bike and you can easily sell it in a year or so to offset the cost of upgrading though it seems many here elect to go with multiple bikes for multiple purposes.
    My thoughts above in bold.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphy View Post
    Been reading a lot and come to some conclusions - am I right?

    1. Road bikes are out. Period. I would have opted for one of these because I had one as a kid, but it looks like unless I have one built, or buy one and swap everything off it to make it a tank, my weight will crush it after a few miles? Not at all, people were just saying that when you see a $5000 road bike it's going to have ultralight everything and specifically the way to lighten up wheels is to use fewer spokes but being heavier us clydes need to have higher spoke counts.

    2. Hybrids are fine but again I need to change a few things right away? a hybrid could be a good starter bike option.

    3. MBís are my best choice and upgrade as I go?
    personally, unless I knew I was going to be doing SIGNIFICANT riding on dirt trails I'd shy away from the mountain bike.
    I know some say to get a used bike and go from there, or buy cheap, but I cant get away from setting out a big budget in the first place or I will be disappointed.
    If things need to be swapped or have a bike upgraded at the start, then it looks like a really big budget needs to be in place already.
    I donít have a problem with any of that, but I donít want to overkill either. Whatever you choose, you should be able to start out nicely equipped for under $1000. For me personally the accesories are where the costs started to add up, helmet, chain&lock, Pinhead security skewers, seatbag, etc Take decent care of your bike and you can easily sell it in a year or so to offset the cost of upgrading though it seems many here elect to go with multiple bikes for multiple purposes.
    My thoughts above in bold.

  23. #23
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    Just phoned a few bike shops and told them my weight and they said:

    1. Hmm, well, I ďthinkĒ you should be fine on this one but its mainly trial and error!!! ???
    2. 300 Lbs you say? Well I ďthinkĒ you ďshouldĒ be ok on a Touring bike - Id go for something in the region of $2,000 to be sure your getting the bestÖ
    3. Yes we have Touring bikes, I cant remember how many spokes they have, and I think they are made of aluminium but not really sure.
    4. A top of the range MB is what you needÖÖ


    In all honesty I have come across this before because the ratio between those that are reasonably fit and those that are overweight is huge, so many shops donít come into contact with many Clydeís so cant answer anything specific to what we need.
    That said, I reckon the best bet is to tell ďthemĒ what I want from the outset so any suggestions above what has been said?

    Any off the shelf specific models? To be honest, I donít really care if itís a Touring or MB or anything.

    Bautieri.........HELP...Lol.

  24. #24
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    Morphy, tell us where you live, someone may be from your area with more specific help.
    My brother is 300lbs and recently got a giant defy and so far no issues (it's an entry level road bike) I'm a fit 250 lbs and ride my Giant Rapid (entry level flat bar road bike, kind of like a hybrid but faster) pretty hard with no major issues.

    As someone was saying earlier, cost goes up with better components that weigh less. They do provide an improvement in function but my rapid and it's r221 ez fire shifters and sora deraileur work just fine so i don't see why you would have to spend anywhere even close to $2000

  25. #25
    Senior Member DoubleTap's Avatar
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    Morphy,

    I agree with much of what's been said above, and I've been down this same road this year. My best advice to you is don't overthink it right now. In March 2009, after having lost about 40 pounds dieting and working out, I decided I wanted to start riding my bike. Without doing much research at all, I walked into a well-respected bike shop and asked them to help me. I walked out with a Trek 7.2FX and started commuting to work. That was at about 335 lbs., and I've not had a single weight related issue with the bike and the only change I made was to put slick tires on it so I could ride a little faster. Twenty pounds and probably 1000 miles later, I went and bought a road bike so I could ride with faster friends on the weekend and also do longer rides. That bike is a full carbon Orbea, and again after about 500 miles I've had no trouble with it.

    My advice would be to find you a decent bike from a LBS, start riding, and in 6 months you'll know a lot more about what you want and need. I've learned so much and become such a better cyclist in just a year, and these boards have been a big help, but the biggest piece of it was riding and learning from my experience and fellow riders.

    Good luck and go ride. I love it.

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