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  1. #1
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    New Clydesdale from Boston

    Hi all, my name is Tim and I am about to buy my first road bike. I'm a bigger guy at about 300 pounds but my weight is headed in the right direction. I see road cycling as an opportunity for some excellent outdoor cardio and also potentially a new social outlet.

    The bike I'm planning to buy is a brand new 2008 leftover Giant OCR 1 at a good discount from my LBS but they've also recommended that I look at a cyclocross bike as well. I'll be putting a couple of miles on both this Saturday before I buy.

  2. #2
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SidewaysTim View Post
    Hi all, my name is Tim and I am about to buy my first road bike. I'm a bigger guy at about 300 pounds but my weight is headed in the right direction. I see road cycling as an opportunity for some excellent outdoor cardio and also potentially a new social outlet.

    The bike I'm planning to buy is a brand new 2008 leftover Giant OCR 1 at a good discount from my LBS but they've also recommended that I look at a cyclocross bike as well. I'll be putting a couple of miles on both this Saturday before I buy.
    Cyclocross bikes have the advantage that they allow wider tires than road bikes. I'm a bit lighter than you and I prefer to ride on bigger than 28mm tires (the biggest you can usually get on a road bike).

    That being said, if one bike is more comfortable for you to ride, that's quite important.

    Good luck!
    Charles
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  3. #3
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    Welcome Tim! I am Avi and I live in Bedford and bike (alternate days) on Minutemen trail....I just started biking recently, loving it and hope to get back in shape...

  4. #4
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    I have a Road bike and a Cyclocross bike. If I had to get rid of one it'd be the road bike. Don't get me wrong on smooth roads the roadbike is fun. The lightweight wheels and tires make it nimble and accelerate well. The downside is when the roads get rough. With the Cyclocross bike I can explore new areas, carry a cooler, add panniers for light shopping ect... The downside of cyclocross bikes is that the cantilever brakes to clear the wider tires are more difficult to keep adjusted.

  5. #5
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jethro56 View Post
    I have a Road bike and a Cyclocross bike. If I had to get rid of one it'd be the road bike. Don't get me wrong on smooth roads the roadbike is fun. The lightweight wheels and tires make it nimble and accelerate well. The downside is when the roads get rough. With the Cyclocross bike I can explore new areas, carry a cooler, add panniers for light shopping ect... The downside of cyclocross bikes is that the cantilever brakes to clear the wider tires are more difficult to keep adjusted.
    One additional comment: Unless you are riding on trails, I recommend getting rid of knobby tires on a 'cross bike and replacing them with slicks. This can make a huge difference in your average speed...
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  6. #6
    Starting over CraigB's Avatar
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    I used to have a copy of the "Boston Basin Bicycle Book." Not sure why, since I never lived there. Only visited friends in Cambridge a couple of times. Scary cagers in that whole area.
    Craig in Indy

  7. #7
    That guy from the Chi Chitown_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    One additional comment: Unless you are riding on trails, I recommend getting rid of knobby tires on a 'cross bike and replacing them with slicks. This can make a huge difference in your average speed...
    I would 100% agree on the tire swap.....unless you are like me and like to sound like a monster truck going down the street!

    But I also take my MTB onto dirt trails outside of commuting on it.
    Proud builder of a frankenbike: My Shrek Antenental Contilope named The Dirty Gertie

  8. #8
    Watching and waiting. jethro56's Avatar
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    I've been very pleased with the 35mm Panaracer Pasela Tour Guards. Inexpensive if you stay wire a wire bead.

  9. #9
    Senior Member TourDeHood's Avatar
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    Welcome! Good to have another Clyde from the Hub! (280 here).

  10. #10
    Senior Member TourDeHood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigB View Post
    I used to have a copy of the "Boston Basin Bicycle Book." Not sure why, since I never lived there. Only visited friends in Cambridge a couple of times. Scary cagers in that whole area.
    Ha. You aint lyin...

  11. #11
    Senior Member AbundantChoice's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Boston Clyde Club! I *almost* got a Surly Crosscheck but went with the Long Haul Trucker instead; i'd agree with everyone above that if you intend to do the majority of your riding on pavement, ditch the knobbies and go w/ some slicks. Also, a few other simple starting out tips:

    - don't be afraid to swap not just saddles, but handlebar stems as well. Most bike shops have a box o' free-trade stems, so you should find one that works for you. Both in terms of rise, and in terms of length.
    - The key thing to watch over the first month or two is the spokes on the rear wheel. Don't be afraid to bring it back in after a month and have them check the rear wheel out.
    - Boston is great for cycling; tons of dedicated lanes and trails, and there's enough bikers here that drivers are generally pretty aware of bikers when we are sharing lanes with cars.
    - Attend a quick "how to change a flat" class. Boston streets are nice, but also full of ten million things that will puncture your tires.

  12. #12
    Senior Member antimonysarah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigB View Post
    I used to have a copy of the "Boston Basin Bicycle Book." Not sure why, since I never lived there. Only visited friends in Cambridge a couple of times. Scary cagers in that whole area.
    Honestly, they're not that bad. They're jerks, but they're pretty consistent, and thus predictable. Plus there are so many bikes on the road they don't generally try to run us off.

    Grab a copy of the Eastern Mass Rubel Bike map, and the Cape/North Shore one if you can find it. They haven't been updated in a few years and are getting harder to find, but they're still way better than any other map for riding purposes.

  13. #13
    Photon-Ninja tjax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SidewaysTim View Post
    Hi all, my name is Tim and I am about to buy my first road bike. I'm a bigger guy at about 300 pounds but my weight is headed in the right direction. I see road cycling as an opportunity for some excellent outdoor cardio and also potentially a new social outlet.

    The bike I'm planning to buy is a brand new 2008 leftover Giant OCR 1 at a good discount from my LBS but they've also recommended that I look at a cyclocross bike as well. I'll be putting a couple of miles on both this Saturday before I buy.
    TIMS UNITE

    -Tim
    2013 Trek 1.2 Alpha Series

  14. #14
    Senior Member TourDeHood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antimonysarah View Post
    Honestly, they're not that bad. They're jerks, but they're pretty consistent, and thus predictable. Plus there are so many bikes on the road they don't generally try to run us off.
    I'd say that's true for Cambridge/Somerville area. But Boston proper can be tough.

    It has gotten MUCH better overall.

  15. #15
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    I actually live in Beverly, about a half hour North of Boston and one town North of Salem on the shore. We have some great cycling roads here. I'm riding my MTB for another week and a half and will be able to pick up my road cycle on May 17th. Maybe I'll put together a North Shore Clyde Ride/cook out once I get comfortable on my new bike.

    also, I live 1/3 of a mile from a commuter rail stop if you city riders don't have alternate transportation to get up here.

  16. #16
    Senior Member antimonysarah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TourDeHood View Post
    I'd say that's true for Cambridge/Somerville area. But Boston proper can be tough.

    It has gotten MUCH better overall.
    Oh, yeah. I've been riding for transportation around here for over 10 years, and it is night and day different. But even back then it was better than suburban Ohio, where I grew up, because people there would try to run me off the road for ****s and giggles.

    Since you're up north, if you don't know about the North Shore Cyclists, look them up. http://www.nscyc.org/

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    Thanks Antimonysarah, I've been checking out NSC and hope to meet up with them on Monday, 5/20 for a ride. From what I've heard they seem like a good group of people.

  18. #18
    Senior Member digibud's Avatar
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    So what did you get? My caution with cyclocross as a group would be the possibility of being steered to a bike that was meant for actual cyclocross competition with a large drop from the seat to the handlebars, which would not be good for most clydes. Something like the aforementioned Long Haul Trucker is meant to carry weight, will have a somewhat upright position, will take reasonably wide tires....but won't put you in a hunched-over racing posture like some cyclocross comp bikes might do. I think the LHT is a great bike for clydes wanting a road bike but not needing a carbon race bike.

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    The bike I bought is a brand new leftover 2008 Giant OCR 1. It felt more comfortable and I liked the handling better. It also has a height adjustable neck. The cyclocross bike I rode was also a Giant but the steering felt sluggish and it just didn't feel right. The OCR felt more comfortable and better to ride than my MTB as well.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by SidewaysTim View Post
    The bike I bought is a brand new leftover 2008 Giant OCR 1. It felt more comfortable and I liked the handling better. It also has a height adjustable neck. The cyclocross bike I rode was also a Giant but the steering felt sluggish and it just didn't feel right. The OCR felt more comfortable and better to ride than my MTB as well.
    Awesome--now lets see some pics!!
    "I had this baby hand made in Tuscany, from titanium blessed by the pope. It weighs less than a fart, and costs more than a divorce..."

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