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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 02-07-13, 10:37 AM   #1
tallteacher
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Pulling the trigger on a bike today

I am bucking conventional wisdom and ordering a bike without first riding it, biggest reason being I dont have the time to go to LA or the Bay Area to test ride a bike IF they had one in my size... Comparing my measurements to bikes the "good" bike shop sells, it was between Trek 2.1 in a 62, Synapse 5 Alloy in 61 or CAAD 10 in a 63....

Talking with the owner of the shop, who is a former racer of bicycles and road bikes, and what my riding experience is and what kinds of roads I will be riding on (crappy), we decided on the Synapse... 3 shoulder surgeries also helped in the equations...although he said the CAAD 10 was indeed worth the price difference, for a first bike and to make sure I like this (which I am pretty sure I will) , the synapse came out the winner...this time....

I know I know...bad me for not test riding both (or EITHER) but I am in a tricky spot and he could not order it without being stuck with it.... I am relying on their expertise and the treatment I have received in my many visits and questions of 2 particular employees in particular....the owner being one of them... I will also be getting 15% any accessory purchases I make

I will hopefully be the proud owner of a 2013 Synapse Alloy 5 in white by next week
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Old 02-07-13, 10:49 AM   #2
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Congratulations! I only rode this year's Allez for like 10 minutes in a size that was too big for me, and I rode last years in the right size, and then ended up going with ordering a properly sized 2013, just because I liked the shifters better. Since then I've absolutely grown to love it! I could see myself switching over to a carbon frame somewhere down the line, but my first few rides on the Allez were super twitchy, and I'm still not sure how stable I am on it.

I'm sure once you're on it and used to it's feature set you'll think it's the best money you've spent. I'm excited for you!
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Old 02-07-13, 11:45 AM   #3
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Yeah I decided that if down the line I need/want...mostly want..to upgrade...it will probably be to carbon.... I just didnt want to put all my money into a bike and not be able to get a computer, inflation kit, spare tube, pump, and shoes....

I am looking forward to getting on it
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Old 02-07-13, 12:26 PM   #4
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don't cheap out on shoes and bibs, these are the points that touch the bike the longest and NEED to be comfy and fitting well.

congrats on the cdale, can't wait for the pics!
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Old 02-07-13, 12:32 PM   #5
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Please don't pull the trigger. I know guns kill, people don't, but pulling the trigger sets the bullet in motion.

But enjoy the new bike, it will be great!
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Old 02-07-13, 12:54 PM   #6
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Congrats on your new bike. Don't over think it - plenty of people order bikes without a test ride and I'm sure you'll like it. They're nice bikes.
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Old 02-07-13, 02:38 PM   #7
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Congratulations! I know buying a bike sight unseen is daunting. I got my Madone without a test ride. Once fitted it was great. I trusted the fitter I worked with on bike sizing. That said, I didn't have much off the rack choice.
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Old 02-07-13, 06:06 PM   #8
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That is a nice machine, enjoy your new bike!
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Old 02-07-13, 06:45 PM   #9
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I was about to order a Koga Miyata World Traveller in 61 size.
The dealer said I could have a floor model in 58 for 1/3 off.
I'm in Victoria, the bike was in Calgary so I couldn't ride it.
All I could do is look at the specs on their web page.

I bought the bike. It has been great! I've got the seat and adjustable stem quite high for riding on pavement, buy when I've got a day of trails ahead of me, I lower them a little.

No regrets, No looking back.

Enjoy your new bike.
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Old 02-07-13, 07:26 PM   #10
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Don't regret it. A Synapse would be a fantastic first bike. You chose very well. No worries mate.

Mark Shuman
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Old 02-07-13, 08:14 PM   #11
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That's the bike I'm getting my daughter as soon as my motorcycle sells.
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Old 02-08-13, 05:46 AM   #12
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The Synapse Alloy 5 is a nice bike, especially at its price point. It's the one I got 2 seasons ago, after a bunch of comparative test rides.
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Old 02-08-13, 08:23 AM   #13
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The real question is going to be how well your LBS fits the bike to you once it comes in. I'd hope they wouldn't cut the fork until everything is locked down, and that they'd swap the stem as necessary to make sure it fits.

But I wrote "I'd hope" because not every bike shop will do those things.
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Old 02-08-13, 12:12 PM   #14
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From what I can see I think they will go through a good fitting once its in...I was told to schedule a fitting once its assembled rather than pick it up...I have also heard from a MTB friend that frequents there that they will make sure the bike fits before it leaves the shop..that is what I am banking on/expecting/hoping for... They said they will also make any adjustments after 100 miles with a free tune up if needed. I think they are too small of a shop to offer lifetime free tuneups but I am ok with that since the service I have gotten in the past on my wifes bike and my MTB has been excellent
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Old 02-08-13, 01:03 PM   #15
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I would say that lifetime free tuneups are non-existent, but I haven't been to every bike shop in the land. There may be some out there, but I've never seen them. All the shops I've frequented offer a free initial tuneup sometime after the customer gets a hundred or three miles on the bike. After that, you pay, which seems eminently reasonable to me.
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Old 02-08-13, 01:15 PM   #16
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Published bike size is THE most overrated measurement on a bike. Modern road bikes are all designed to be ridden with several inches of seatpost showing so whether you are on a 60 or a 63 is probably of little consequence. Now if you have strange proportions then the other elements can come into play but it's highly unlikely that the bike will be unrideable, it just may not be rideable to its greatest capabilities. How tall are you?

My personal preference would be to have a bike slightly undersized but that is because I ride with a lot of racers so an undersized bike is going to let me set it up with a lot of saddle to bar drop and better aerodynamics. for casual club riding i'd probably err in the other direction of being a bit on the larger side of things

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Old 02-08-13, 01:17 PM   #17
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I would say that lifetime free tuneups are non-existent, but I haven't been to every bike shop in the land. There may be some out there, but I've never seen them. All the shops I've frequented offer a free initial tuneup sometime after the customer gets a hundred or three miles on the bike. After that, you pay, which seems eminently reasonable to me.
Strongly disagree, every shop here in NYC offers them. The problem as I see it is what constitutes simple tuning and what constitutes repair worthy of charging the customer. there are definately some gray areas there.
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Old 02-08-13, 02:58 PM   #18
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I would say that lifetime free tuneups are non-existent, but I haven't been to every bike shop in the land. There may be some out there, but I've never seen them. All the shops I've frequented offer a free initial tuneup sometime after the customer gets a hundred or three miles on the bike. After that, you pay, which seems eminently reasonable to me.
My shop here in Mountain View CA offers it. And free wheel truing. If I want a more expensive service I just pay the delta. Which means that for $45 or so they'll take the drivetrain off and clean it in the ultrasonic cleaner. Oooh, shiny.
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Old 02-08-13, 03:43 PM   #19
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The big shop in bakersfield offers that but they are HUGE so maybe they make up for it since they often charge more for bikes and accessories to cover the cost of the tune ups...a co worker said peformance bike also give full life time tuneups if you are the original owner
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Old 02-09-13, 07:44 AM   #20
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Apparently I've only lived in The Land of the Stingy Bike Shops. I think a lot of it might be what constitutes a "tune-up." The free work I've seen offered is pretty much limited to checking that wheels are still true, bolts are still tight and taking up any slack cables.

My LBS defines their basic tune-up as: "adjusting and tuning gears and brakes, truing wheels, checking and adjusting hubs, headsets and bottom brackets, and degreasing and lubing chains and pivot points." They charge for it. If you guys' shops don't, by all means take advantage of the deal.
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Old 02-09-13, 10:35 AM   #21
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Apparently I've only lived in The Land of the Stingy Bike Shops. I think a lot of it might be what constitutes a "tune-up." The free work I've seen offered is pretty much limited to checking that wheels are still true, bolts are still tight and taking up any slack cables.
Yes, this is my experience: free lifetime service consists of putting air in the tires, a little lube on the chain, then trying to up-sell the owner of the bike on more expensive paid service, component upgrades, or whatever gear the shop happens to have on sale. Most of the shops around here offer it, because it's a great ruse to keep customers coming back into the shop...
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Old 02-09-13, 02:44 PM   #22
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Apparently I've only lived in The Land of the Stingy Bike Shops. I think a lot of it might be what constitutes a "tune-up." The free work I've seen offered is pretty much limited to checking that wheels are still true, bolts are still tight and taking up any slack cables.

My LBS defines their basic tune-up as: "adjusting and tuning gears and brakes, truing wheels, checking and adjusting hubs, headsets and bottom brackets, and degreasing and lubing chains and pivot points." They charge for it. If you guys' shops don't, by all means take advantage of the deal.
This is consistent with my experience in Minnesota.
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