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  1. #1
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    Big Guy looking to get into cycling and hoping for some bike buying advice!

    Hey guys! I've been wanting to get into biking for a little while now, but have only just decided to actually go for it. The issue is I'm having trouble knowing whether some bikes I see on Craigslist are good, or are duds! I'm also going to peruse the local bike shops here in Louisville, but in the meantime I've found a few bikes that I liked the look of. For a little more about me, I'm going on 25 years old this year and weigh around 302 lbs, standing at 5'9" with an inseam of 28". Thing is I'm hardly new to fitness or weight loss, as over the course of a year I'd lost 100 lbs going from 370 lbs to 270 lbs thanks to weight lifting. Winter did me no favors, nor did hurting my ankle and so I packed some pounds back on.

    These are some of the bikes I've been eyeing...

    General Craigslist: louisville bicycles - by owner classifieds - craigslist

    The Long Drive(Specialized Sport-Hard Rock $85): Specialized Sport-Hard Rock This one would work wonderfully, and I might only need to change out the tires. Only problem is it's 55 miles away.
    The Closer Option(Trek 920 1994 singletrack mountain bike $125): Trek 920 1994 singletrack mountain bike Much closer, but also more pricey.
    The Mystery Bike aka New Orleans Special $100: Reliable 10-Speed Bicycle Hard to know much about this one, no sizing information whatsoever.

    All three of those I've contacted the owner in some way, last two via email and first by phone. They'll sell it to me even cheaper if I can come all the way down to get it.

    The La Grange(GT Outpost Trail $125): GT Outpost Trail Not much to say really, similar to the second bike in that it's much closer and seems the right fit.
    The Ferrari(Motobecane Cyclocross Bike w/ Shimano $280): Motobecane Cyclocross Bike w/ Shimano 105 This is really pushing hard against my budget. I've been to a Schwinn shop and they would sell me a new GIANT brand bike for $350. But this thing looks tough as nails.

    If anyone sees anything else that might work for me, I'd love some suggestions! I've been checking every day, and am hoping to go out today to a few of the local shops to peruse their used bike sections.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Willbird's Avatar
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    The Trek is fairly similar kinda to my 2001 7200........my 7200 has been rock solid, the 920 is geared a little lower but it is 11-28 across the back where my 7200 was 11-34.

    If it is as solid as my 7200 you will be very happy with it. For $125 I'd be all over that like white on rice :-). Put some smooth tires on it if you want to ride on the road only.

    The "Reliable 10 speed" has stem shifters........erkk hehe, probably friction not index shifting?.....I think you will be happier with twist or rapidfire shifters.

    I have never even remotely considered a bike with suspension for road riding, and IMHO for consistent cardio exercise road riding is the thing to go for, others may totally disagree however on both points :-).



    Bill
    Last edited by Willbird; 07-18-14 at 10:32 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member JerrySTL's Avatar
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    Forget the Motobecane. The 61 cm frame might even be a little large for me and I'm 6' 1".

    The GT might be the best bet if the photos are current. It looks like a nice bike with recent tires. About the only thing I don't like on it is the suspension seatpost. If the bike fits you, it could be a great choice.

    X-nay on the NO bike. A jumble of parts.

    If the GT is too tall, the Specialized might fit you better.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Willbird's Avatar
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    The cyclocross bike some some cool aspects, but if you have to pay to change anything about it then your adding $$ to get where you really want/need to be. Not sure how the gearing is as it is set up, it should shift and work really nice as long as the range of combinations is wide enough to keep you happy for awile. A RKI may have a better eye for chainring and cassette sizes to be able to better advise you there.

    Bill

  5. #5
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    I think if I'm unable to find someone willing to drive the 55 miles for the Specialized, that either the Trek or GT might be the way I'll go. Either one is still gonna be a bit of a drive, 30 minutes no matter which one I go for. Although, another forum I frequent said the GT was turned into the "wrong kind of hybrid" and that the saddle was wrong.

  6. #6
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    Hey so, apparently someone I know would be willing to go halfsies with me on a bike. In that case... Well, I got a good look at this https://www.norco.com/bikes/city/lif...orkville-mens/ at one of the local bike shops. Selling it for $360.


    There's also the bike I was shown at Schwinn, which was $350 and a 2014 GIANT Escape. Escape 0 (2014) | Giant Bicycles | United States


    The reason the person offered is they kind of would prefer me to not go trusting Craigslist too much. I mean, if they're willing to go half it might be a good way to go.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akeche View Post
    Hey so, apparently someone I know would be willing to go halfsies with me on a bike. In that case... Well, I got a good look at this https://www.norco.com/bikes/city/lif...orkville-mens/ at one of the local bike shops. Selling it for $360.


    There's also the bike I was shown at Schwinn, which was $350 and a 2014 GIANT Escape. Escape 0 (2014) | Giant Bicycles | United States


    The reason the person offered is they kind of would prefer me to not go trusting Craigslist too much. I mean, if they're willing to go half it might be a good way to go.
    I bought a Giant Escape from Middletown Cycling in Louisville in May. Love the bike. Was 320 when I started on it and it's holds up well and rides nice.

  8. #8
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    Out of curiosity, what did you do to... Well, keep your bike safe? Yeah there's the lock, but I kind of figure I'd get some personal information engraved on the frame and also put decals on the frame so the GIANT symbol is covered.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Black wallnut's Avatar
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    If you leave your bike outside it will likely get stolen, it is a matter of time. Even from a third floor balcony.


    Mark

  10. #10
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    Well that's encouraging.

    The Specialized I was originally eyeing on Craigslist is no longer listed, figures with my luck. Just emphasizes why I need a bike so I don't have to rely on other people. Asking someone to drive further than ten minutes away feels like pulling teeth around here. I'd even offered gas money to take me down to get it, but not a single peep.

  11. #11
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    We're you looking at the specialized in Etown for 85.if so I bought it. Tires were shot side wall on front blown out. I put new tires and tube new chain on it finished it today. Going to take it to bike shop to get the wheels tried up. I missed some good buys trying to research the bike before I bought to many bikes for new guy.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twcpdc1041 View Post
    We're you looking at the specialized in Etown for 85.if so I bought it. Tires were shot side wall on front blown out. I put new tires and tube new chain on it finished it today. Going to take it to bike shop to get the wheels tried up. I missed some good buys trying to research the bike before I bought to many bikes for new guy.
    Yeah other people I talked to said the tires looked like they'd need replacing. Guess I dodged a bullet a bit with that one then.

    For anyone else who might be able to help, I've got a small list of other bikes I've spotted which look good. A lot of these looked good, but seeing as I'm new to this I just wanted to get some opinions. It's a bit of a long list, but hopefully that just means better pickings. For reference again, my height is 5'9" and my inseam around 28".

    1970's Peugeot 1970s Peugeot
    Schwinn Crisscross Schwinn Crisscross For Sale
    Red Specialized Crossroads red specialized crossroads
    "Vintage Ten Speed" Brand is absent Vintage ten speed/great fixie project
    Schwinn Lakeshore Bicycle Schwinn Lakeshore Bicycle
    Vintage Schwinn Hollywood VINTAGE SHCWINN HOLLYWOOD 26 INCH BIKE
    Beacon Road Bike Road Bike
    Trek 920 Road Bike Trek 920 road bike

  13. #13
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    I got the bike for 50 new tires and tube so I am up to 95 I have a little more to spend on it but I think it will be okay.

  14. #14
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    The owner of Schwinn Crisscross For Sale got back to me. They bought it back in 1992 from a local Schwinn bike shop, he's had it tuned up every 2-3 years and more recently in October of 2011. New tires put on it in 2012 or 2013, and we're the same height. Also told me he'd hold it until I can actually get a ride to come and get it.

    Hope the Specialized works out for you Twcpdc, I think this one might be mine.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Willbird's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akeche View Post
    The owner of Schwinn Crisscross For Sale got back to me. They bought it back in 1992 from a local Schwinn bike shop, he's had it tuned up every 2-3 years and more recently in October of 2011. New tires put on it in 2012 or 2013, and we're the same height. Also told me he'd hold it until I can actually get a ride to come and get it.

    Hope the Specialized works out for you Twcpdc, I think this one might be mine.
    I had a Schwinn Crisscross......in 1993 or so, not a bad bike really, they had suntour components in the years mine was made I'm thinking. I seem to recall some rides as long as 30 miles on it.

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