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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 07-07-10, 08:25 PM   #1
KatiezMom
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Newbie Athena looking for advice

I finally took the plunge and joined because I couldn't find the answer anywhere else and am sure someone here could help me.

I am 340 lbs and have decided its total crap to wait until I am lighter to buy a bike. My daughter loves biking, my husband likes biking and I used to like biking but then I let my weight decide that I couldn't do it anymore.

I want a cruiser type bike, I have actually fallen in love with an Electra Deluxe 3i with the step through frame. My question is, have you ever heard of a larger person riding one? From reading threw lots and lots of posts, I gather I should look into getting a custom back tire/rim. It has an alloy rims with 26 x 2.125 tires, should I go up to a large tire (26 x 3") Thoughts?

Thanks everyone
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Old 07-07-10, 08:30 PM   #2
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Go get it and ride.
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Old 07-07-10, 08:46 PM   #3
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Hi Katiesmom, and welcome to the forums. I'll second what 10 wheels says. If you like the bike, and it's comfortable for you to ride, you'll ride it more. Also, when you are ready for something sportier, you'll still have the comfort bike for other riding. I write the blog 10 wheels linked you to, and I'd suggest you read it from the beginning. I started this journey at 581 pounds, in a wheelchair, and on oxygen, and now am just at or under 200 pounds. I had a recent health setback, but before my heart incident, I was riding endurance rides at 150+ miles in a day.

My heart issue is from an apparent congenital S-A Node issue causing arrhythmia and incidents of atrial fibrillation, and is not related to previous weight issues, and if I hadn't been in the shape I was on the advent of the heart issue, I would have likely died from it. I'm on the way back though, and a huge part of both my survival and ongoing recovery is cycling.
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Old 07-07-10, 09:52 PM   #4
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Hello!

I don't know about wheel-building or anything like that, so I can't help there...But I agree that you should buy the bike that inspires you (if it fits)! But if you live someplace that isn't pretty flat, you might want to consider getting a bike (cruiser or otherwise) that has more than 3 speeds. If you like the internally geared hubs like the one on the 3i, there is a Nexus 9 that has wide enough gearing to take you up hills, although it will cost more. I haven't seen any 9-speed cruisers on Electra's site (I just glanced), but I thought I'd mention it anyway.
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Old 07-08-10, 12:03 AM   #5
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For a cruiser style bike, 340lbs is not a weight at which you need to consider custom wheels.

If you are truly concerned, take a look at the bike you are thinking of getting, check out the maker of the wheels, get the model/type, and contact them. They will be able to inform you of the max recommended weight, or you may even find it on their website. In any case I think you will find you are well within the limit.

As an example, I was 300lbs not so long ago. I am now down to 280lbs, but even so, I ride around on my cruiser, with my 120lb wife sitting on the padded rack at the back, for hour long rides. So that is 400-420lbs on a standard cruiser, and no problems at all.

To give you another comparison, even the wheels on this bike have a recommended max of about 330lbs, and this is obviously far from a cruiser!


Last edited by OiS; 07-08-10 at 12:17 AM.
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Old 07-08-10, 01:14 AM   #6
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For a cruiser style bike, 340lbs is not a weight at which you need to consider custom wheels.

If you are truly concerned, take a look at the bike you are thinking of getting, check out the maker of the wheels, get the model/type, and contact them. They will be able to inform you of the max recommended weight, or you may even find it on their website. In any case I think you will find you are well within the limit.

As an example, I was 300lbs not so long ago. I am now down to 280lbs, but even so, I ride around on my cruiser, with my 120lb wife sitting on the padded rack at the back, for hour long rides. So that is 400-420lbs on a standard cruiser, and no problems at all.

To give you another comparison, even the wheels on this bike have a recommended max of about 330lbs, and this is obviously far from a cruiser!

Thank you everyone for your replies, makes me feel so much better about the purchase (total coincidence but my LBS is having a 20% Electra cruisers sale....wooo hoo)

OiS, what kind of cruiser do you have if you don't mind me asking?
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Old 07-08-10, 03:24 AM   #7
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Hello!

I don't know about wheel-building or anything like that, so I can't help there...But I agree that you should buy the bike that inspires you (if it fits)! But if you live someplace that isn't pretty flat, you might want to consider getting a bike (cruiser or otherwise) that has more than 3 speeds. If you like the internally geared hubs like the one on the 3i, there is a Nexus 9 that has wide enough gearing to take you up hills, although it will cost more. I haven't seen any 9-speed cruisers on Electra's site (I just glanced), but I thought I'd mention it anyway.
There are two schools of thought.

1. Buy whatever kind of bike is going to motivate you to actually ride it at this point. If it be a beach cruiser, so be it.

2. Practicality says that a bike with numerous gears is going to allow you to do much more serious riding and rides of substantial length. Beach cruisers are very heavy bikes with large wheels and with only 3 gears you will most surely have trouble getting up hills at some point

Most people here will tell you that they have more than one bike. As you get started into cycling you find yourself wanting different bikes for different purposes. If the beach cruiser tickles your fancy, get it, but honestly, be prepared to buy much more of a road bike if your really looking to get into some riding.

Something like a Specialized Crossroads would sort of be the best of both worlds. It has a little bit of beach cruiser styling and setup with 21 speeds. This bike will let you grow into it a bit more and of course if 21 gears are daunting starting out, just put it in a easy gear and leave it there for a few rides and get comfortable.
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Old 07-08-10, 03:41 AM   #8
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Yeah, a 21-speed bike is really a 7-speed bike if you don't touch the front shifter.
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Old 07-08-10, 08:03 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by KatiezMom View Post
Thank you everyone for your replies, makes me feel so much better about the purchase (total coincidence but my LBS is having a 20% Electra cruisers sale....wooo hoo)

OiS, what kind of cruiser do you have if you don't mind me asking?
I have attached a couple of pics of my Trek Cruiser. It is fun to take down to ride along the park (with my wife being lazy and chauffered on the back!).

But, I have to say, I have other bikes, like my road bike I attached above, and a Giant MTB I also attach a pic of, so I have a selection. Why I mention this is that others are right to say it is better to have at least some gears if you are primarily on that one bike. My Cruiser has only one speed, it is fun, but wouldn't recommend it is an only bike.



and



and here is my MTB



Good luck with your bike purchase! Ultimately, purchase what appeals to you, if you like your bike, you will ride it more!

Oh! One more thing I wanted to say, 'cuz I see a lot of casual riders ignoring this basic principle - Keep your tyres pumped up to the MAX psi that is recommended for your tyre!! You don't need to check it every day, but check it (or get your husband to check it!) once a week, or at most every 2 weeks. By doing this, you avoid "pinch" flats which you can get from having a less than fully inflated tyre, AND it truly makes a bike easier to ride when its tyres are at max pressure!

Last edited by OiS; 07-08-10 at 08:11 AM. Reason: Tyre comment
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Old 07-08-10, 08:07 AM   #10
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Hi! I am a smaller Athena (5'7", 225 lb) and I have a Townie 21d, which replaced a trek 6 speed.
I would recommend something with more gears. Early on in your riding you will be glad you have
more gears. I am now doing 20 plus miles on the Townie and love it, but am looking at a road bike
for touring and possibly some sprint triathlons.

Good luck and good riding!
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Old 07-08-10, 05:17 PM   #11
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I have attached a couple of pics of my Trek Cruiser. It is fun to take down to ride along the park (with my wife being lazy and chauffered on the back!).

But, I have to say, I have other bikes, like my road bike I attached above, and a Giant MTB I also attach a pic of, so I have a selection. Why I mention this is that others are right to say it is better to have at least some gears if you are primarily on that one bike. My Cruiser has only one speed, it is fun, but wouldn't recommend it is an only bike.



and



and here is my MTB



Good luck with your bike purchase! Ultimately, purchase what appeals to you, if you like your bike, you will ride it more!

Oh! One more thing I wanted to say, 'cuz I see a lot of casual riders ignoring this basic principle - Keep your tyres pumped up to the MAX psi that is recommended for your tyre!! You don't need to check it every day, but check it (or get your husband to check it!) once a week, or at most every 2 weeks. By doing this, you avoid "pinch" flats which you can get from having a less than fully inflated tyre, AND it truly makes a bike easier to ride when its tyres are at max pressure!
I think that all riders need to know two things related to tires, first is how to keep tires properly inflated, second is how to fix a puncture or flat, I think the British term here is more accurate so I will continue to use it. This is an area where a lot of female riders tend to never learn, and it's to their own detriment, because the ability to fix a punctures adds a huge degree of freedom to your riding. Run into a puncture 10 miles from home, just fix it and ride on. Punctures can be dirty, if you don't want to get dirty, you can add a pair of plastic disposable gloves to your gear (like doctors gloves), then don the gloves before fixing the flat. Best way to fix a puncture is to remove the tube and put in a different one, this does not have to be a new one, tubes can be patched, and I patch them at home when I have several to do, I have 3 spares and they are all adorned with at least one patch.

Now back to the freedom aspect, being able to fix a puncture on the road means that your not having to walk a huge distance or call for a pickup. If you don't know how get someone to show you, the folks at the LBS (local bike shop) would be happy to, providing you don't ask at a time they are very busy, then practice a couple of times. You need 2 pumps, one a heavy duty floor pump (with a gauge) for at home, second a small pump or a CO2 inflator for on the bike. While the floor pump can be used with any bike in the house, you really want a separate on bike pump for each bike. Murphy's law of bicycling, you always get a flat when the pump in on the other bike. Modern mini pumps typically fit under a water bottle cage, using the same screws, some bikes (like my Raleigh which was made in 1975) don't look right with them though, they either need the old style long ones, or none at all, thinking about picking up a CO2 inflator for it, because that would fit inside a small seatbag along with levers and spare tube.
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Old 07-12-10, 01:27 PM   #12
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For a cruiser style bike, 340lbs is not a weight at which you need to consider custom wheels.

If you are truly concerned, take a look at the bike you are thinking of getting, check out the maker of the wheels, get the model/type, and contact them. They will be able to inform you of the max recommended weight, or you may even find it on their website. In any case I think you will find you are well within the limit.

As an example, I was 300lbs not so long ago. I am now down to 280lbs, but even so, I ride around on my cruiser, with my 120lb wife sitting on the padded rack at the back, for hour long rides. So that is 400-420lbs on a standard cruiser, and no problems at all.

To give you another comparison, even the wheels on this bike have a recommended max of about 330lbs, and this is obviously far from a cruiser!

Wait a damn second, you can't just slip in a pix of this beautiful bike and not tell us, or rather me, anything about it...details please...this is one sweet looking bike...I love the yellow/black combo
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Old 07-12-10, 02:00 PM   #13
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For a cruiser style bike, 340lbs is not a weight at which you need to consider custom wheels.
I hardly doubt that is the type of "custom wheel" she is talking about. She is more than likely talking about a stronger rim to handle her weight, handbuilt, more spokes, double wall etc etc.
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Old 07-12-10, 08:15 PM   #14
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I would suggest getting the higher gears, 21d. My wife went with a 7d and regrets it. You will quickly out gear a 3 speed. Also the townies with derailleurs have a extra piece of steel in which the derailleur attaches. Making adding it after market a pain in the seat.

Have much fun
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Old 07-15-10, 04:49 AM   #15
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Wait a damn second, you can't just slip in a pix of this beautiful bike and not tell us, or rather me, anything about it...details please...this is one sweet looking bike...I love the yellow/black combo
Hehehe, sorry about that!

Rather than hijack this thread though, I started a new one. You can check it out here:

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?662616-My-Story-and-my-NEW-bike!&p=11115594#post11115594
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Old 07-15-10, 05:20 AM   #16
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Katies mom has got it goin on ........ (I know the song goes stacies mom, but it stuck .. ok)

Sorry got the song stuck in my head. Buy what you love, whetever inspires you to get out there and ride. Also read and post on these forums, there is a wealth of knowledge on these forums.
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Old 07-15-10, 08:25 AM   #17
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KatiezMom, Get whatever bike that makes you feel like riding. Get a helmet also! If any issues arise they then can be dealt with.

Have fun.
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Old 07-15-10, 12:46 PM   #18
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Agreed, do whatever it takes to get you on the bike. Pretty colors, sleek lines or a basket for groceries. get what you like and make sure it fits. Fit is the most important item.
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Old 07-15-10, 05:45 PM   #19
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KatiezMom DOES have it goin' on, just chunkey monkey style but thats ok Thank you everyone for all the info, what a supportive group we have here. I ended up getting a Trek Calypso, the mens frame since I am 5'10. They balked a bit when i said that I wanted to add a basket to the front, stating its a mens frame so I just gave them the blank mom stare for a minute then they relented. Its been great, nothing broken and popped yet so I am a happy camper. I did ask them about getting custom wheels (I'm talking double walled with more spokes) and the guy at LBS said not to worry about it for some time. As I lose weight it won't be an issue anymore so why worry now (such a smart man).

Thanks everyone
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Old 07-15-10, 08:58 PM   #20
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KatiezMom DOES have it goin' on, just chunkey monkey style but thats ok Thank you everyone for all the info, what a supportive group we have here. I ended up getting a Trek Calypso, the mens frame since I am 5'10. They balked a bit when i said that I wanted to add a basket to the front, stating its a mens frame so I just gave them the blank mom stare for a minute then they relented. Its been great, nothing broken and popped yet so I am a happy camper. I did ask them about getting custom wheels (I'm talking double walled with more spokes) and the guy at LBS said not to worry about it for some time. As I lose weight it won't be an issue anymore so why worry now (such a smart man).

Thanks everyone
You forgot the one rule of posting in a forum about a new bicycle, YOU FORGOT THE PICTURES!!!!!
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Old 08-05-10, 06:06 AM   #21
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Just wondering how you are doing and how you are liking the bike. Would love to see a pic too.
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Old 08-05-10, 04:43 PM   #22
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Just wondering how you are doing and how you are liking the bike. Would love to see a pic too.
+1 on what NH Girl said. This whole thread is worthless witout pictures of the new bike
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