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  1. #1
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    Large guy in need of a bike

    Hey Everybody-

    I used to love riding, but I haven't ridden in years. The last bike I had wasn't sufficient for my size and that was when I weighed way less than I do now. But, I've got to make a change. I'm 5'11 carrying a "svelt" 335lbs give or take. I'm on a super tight budget, especially considering, it's hard to justify an expense without a history showing I will actually use it. I did some research last night and saw suggestions for the Specialized Hard Rock, the Giant Sedona and some other more expensive bikes like the Kona Hoss.

    I'm not sure what size bike I need and I plan on going into my LBS to check things out and get some information from them, but i'm not sure if I can afford a new bike from them.
    I have found a few on Craigslist that might work, but I don't really know and would love any and all advice you all are willing to give. Whether it be about the bikes below or about a totally different route.

    Giant Rincon 21 sp, 19.5" for $175
    Specialized Hard Rock 21 sp, says is for persons 6' to 6'6" with a cross bar height of 34"- it's only $100
    Giant Escape 2, 700x32, 700c w/ lots of extras for $350

    Unfortunately, as I read through things I don't know what a lot of it means. Heck I'm not even sure when I'm supposed to shift and to what gear!

  2. #2
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention. I'm only 34 so the weight is a huge issue, but thankfully, I'm young enough I can still do something about it. I despise running and lately walking has been hurting my left knee and shin. Which I can only assume has to do with all the extra weight I'm carrying around.

  3. #3
    Carpe Velo Yo Spiff's Avatar
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    All of those are good bike store brands, but I don't know what component levels those bikes have. Can you post links to the CL ads?

    Offhand the Specialized sounds very good for $100. Probably not close to new at that price, but I've gotten some very nice older MTB's and hybrids fro peanuts. My own utility bike is a 25 year old Trek that I only have about $100 in.

    Added: Found the Specialized ad. Details are hard to tell from the tiny pics, but offhand it looks good and it has a good rep. Steel frame, non-suspended fork. The cantilever brakes suggest late 90's or earlier manufacture date. All good for your intended use. I'd say snag this one.

    The Giant Escape looks good and is newer, but especially since you are on a tight budget, the Specialized is still a better deal.

    The Giant Rincon looks good as well, and is reasonably priced. But I still think the Specialized is the deal of the day.
    Last edited by Yo Spiff; 03-14-12 at 10:38 AM.
    2000 Bianchi Veloce, '88 Schwinn Prologue, '88 Trek 900, '92 Trek T100, 2000 Rans Tailwind

  4. #4
    Perma-n00b Askel's Avatar
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    You might want to re-examine your budget.

    The bicycling lifestyle takes a fair amount of time and money.

    Deliberately limiting what you're willing to put into it will certainly not improve your odds of getting the most out of it.

    If you have the money, you need to make the commitment.

    If you don't, well- it'll probably be harder and more time consuming. But what isn't when you're broke?

  5. #5
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    That bike is probably going to be too big for you - his lingo is a little off but it sounds like the standover height is 34", which is probably more than your crotch will appreciate.

    I'd say keep looking, or even try fleabay. There are lots of bargains out there. Apparently people buy bikes that are wrong for them all the time and then don't ride them, go figure.

  6. #6
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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  7. #7
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    The specialized is too big. I'm 6'2" and wouldn't want it.

    Providing a link to the other bikes will go a long way to get responses.

    http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...st/9019/48871/ in a large may be a way to go.

  8. #8
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    Ok I see the links now... good job. The last two are worth a ride

  9. #9
    Carpe Velo Yo Spiff's Avatar
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    Since I am only 5'7" and ride a relatively small frame, I had no idea what was the right size for him. Thanks for the catch on that.
    2000 Bianchi Veloce, '88 Schwinn Prologue, '88 Trek 900, '92 Trek T100, 2000 Rans Tailwind

  10. #10
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    Dang... The $100 bike sounded really nice. I probably could have even convinced my wife at that price!

    Maybe I should have been more specific. My largeness is more of a thickness rather than height. Heck, I'm the exact weight I should be, if I was 8'6".

    Thanks for all of the responses so far.

  11. #11
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    Would one of you mind to explain (dumb down) why I wouldn't want the bike with the standover height of 34"?

  12. #12
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    You'll rack yourself. To know the maxium standover, In bare feet stand against a wall. Place good sized book as far up between your legs as it will go with it plumb against the wall. Measure that distance. That's the absolute max. The thickness of your shoes is the only thing protecting you from hurting yourself on a sudden dismount.

  13. #13
    A square going nowhere psalm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ccrow View Post
    Would one of you mind to explain (dumb down) why I wouldn't want the bike with the standover height of 34"?
    Basic rule of thumb is to have a few inches between the tube and your crotch, with both feel planted on the ground while you straddle that tube, not the seat. It varies depending on your body proportions. I have short legs for my height, so my clearance is a lot less then that.

    If it is in fact 34" from the tube to the ground, then your inseam would have to be around 36-37". Again it varies, and pants inseam vs cycling inseam aren't exactly the same thing.
    01:20:23:00
    05:23:59:00

  14. #14
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    In addition to the size issues, the ad for the Specialized says it needs tires/tubes. This would lead me to believe that it has been sitting still for a long time, so the odds are good that the chain and cables would need attention/ possibly replaced, too. Replacing all the "consumables" will tack on another $40 minimum, and that's if you do the work yourself. Just a thought.

    IMO, that Rincon seems like it would be a better fit, and it looks like it's in decent shape. I'd check it out and offer the guy $125-$150 for it.


    No matter what you get, for a used bike be prepared to spend money on: rim strips, tubes, tires, cables, chain. You may not need to, but I just mention that as food for thought.


    Don't forget a helmet and pump, too.

  15. #15
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    I went to both of my LBS last night and it was an interesting experiment. The first one, was concerned about my comfort and the longevity of the equipment. The volunteered that I needed double wall rims and nicer cassette. They had several options, but thought in the end, since I'm admittedly rough on things, the Giant Revel 1 with an upgraded seat would be a good fit. They did mention that in the used section there is a Specialized Hard Rock for 175, that's fairly old. It would be a starter bike, but didn't think it would be worth putting any money into and that it might last me a year, but wouldn't have the upgraded features I need.

    The other shop, was a nightmare, they wanted to know what I thought was cool. Knew nothing about double wall rims and only sold Trek, which none of the ones I tried did I find comfortable. Of course I was in jeans, so that is partially on me.

    I did find another bike that I'm curious about and would appreciate any of your thoughts.
    http://oklahoma.freecycleshopper.com... /> frame.html-It may not have all of the upgrades either, but at that price I may get to start riding sooner rather than later.

  16. #16
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    Ccrow: The link appears broken. If it's a Giant Sedona I have one. But I've modified it


  17. #17
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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  18. #18
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    I'm finding several "starter" bikes on clist. I say starter, because I can't afford a new bike and I really need to prove to myself I can/will stick with it. That being said if I make 6 mo's I should be able to afford and justify a new bike.

    So, most of what I finding doesn't have shocks, how important do any of you think that should be for a short term starter bike?

  19. #19
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    Hi!
    I am 434 pounds and just bought a Specialized Hard Rock and I could not be happier.

  20. #20
    Senior Member magohn's Avatar
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    I dunno. If youve only got $100, youve only got $100. Id go for the Spec for $100. Yes its big for you but it WILL get you out there and it WILL help you decide if you want to go any further with the sport / hobby. Perhaps the tires are usable for local rides.

    When I started back at biking in 2010, I was 320lbs and I am 6'0". I was extremely lucky that I was able to afford an all-carbon Spec Roubaix. I was a little silly because 2 friends that also started the hobby at the same time have long since "quit". They both have thousand dollar bikes sat at the back of the garage - it could have been me. I kept riding but thats not usually the norm. My point is , that if I were to do it again Id spend a couple of hundred $ on CL rather than roll the dice if Im to keep riding.

    Also, last year there was a 60cm Trek Fx .3 Disc on our local CL. Too big a bike for a 6'0" guy but I went to see it anyways. I wanted a "winter bike". The seller told me they bought the bike for their son and it was loaded with full fenders, racks, and less than 50 miles on it. I walked away with it for $300. Yes its on the big side but I LOVE that bike. Extremely comfortable, reliable and excellent gearing. Its a close call which of my bikes prefer but for the$, Im glad I went "too big for me".

    Go spend the $100 - it works - Im now in the 280's - slow but steady
    Last edited by magohn; 03-17-12 at 09:37 PM.

  21. #21
    Senior Member
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    One type of used bike source I never see mentioned here is a pawn shop. I bought a KHS folding bike that retailed for $300 for $60, and I haven't put a drop on change into it because it already had the white front light and rear red light (as required by state law) from the previous owner. This pawn store usually has a revolving inventory of 15-20 bikes of every make, model, and price range, although it helps that this particular store is located in a very bike-friendly city, and it is a college town. But it may be worth your while to give a couple of pawn shops in your area a call and see what they have.

  22. #22
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    Pawn shops, hmmm I.ll have to check them out this week. I've got a couple go CL bikes that have caught my eye, but I hadn't thought of trying there.

  23. #23
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    When I began several years ago I started with an old beach cruiser I bought 20 years before sitting in the garage for the past 16. I rode that for 9 months before I bought another bike. Just wanted to make sure I didn't spend a lot and then quit. My next bike was a Raleigh c500 ($550) that I rode the he** out of. Since Stillwater OK doesn't sound like it has huge hills, I'd suggest just getting a bike that looks like it has some big honkin wheels on it and ride it till they fall off. Once you start getting into it, you will have a better idea of what you want and time to save up. If you can find an old industrial bike like a Worksman it would be awesome. There is a guy around here Stephen H who had one and rode it for more than one would expect. You might PM him.
    Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.

  24. #24
    Member ccrow's Avatar
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    http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/bik/2907786190.html

    This may be the best deal I've found so far. Does this seem like a good option to anyone else for a starter bike?

    I'm trying to sell my guitar tonight to see if I can make enough money to get something to get me started.

  25. #25
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    Test ride it. If you like it, and it fits your budget, then that's a good option.

    On a used aluminum that's going for cheap, make sure you really give the frame a good eyeballing. You don't want to end up with something cracked or dented that WAS somebody else's problem.

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