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Old 07-19-14, 08:37 AM   #1
bikeinphila
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suggestions on basic bike computer?

Hi All! Can someone recommend a basic bike computer for me? I recently started to go on +50 mile rides once a week and while I'd love a machine with GPS in case I get lost, I'm not ready to spring the $ for it yet. Instead I'm looking for something more basic that will tell me my distance, speed, and overall average speed. I've looked on amazon and my local bike shop's website but there's so many produces at a wide price range that seem to do the same thing and I'm confused over which is the what I need. Although I don't want to spend $70 for something that I can get for $20, I understand you get what you pay for. I'm not looking to save $ in the short run only to have to replace it sooner rather than later. Any thoughts appreciated & thanks in advance!
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Old 07-19-14, 09:25 AM   #2
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I prefer my phone and Cyclemeter for this. Do you have a, IOS or Android phone?
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Old 07-19-14, 04:59 PM   #3
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I use a Sigma BC1009 wired computer. Current speed, average speed, ride time, maximum speed, distance, odometer. Absolutely reliable.
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Old 07-19-14, 05:04 PM   #4
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The CatEye Velo 7 is a great basic wired bike computer.
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Old 07-19-14, 05:49 PM   #5
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Thanks for all your suggestions.
I have an android phone and the app I used once seemed to drain my battery which is why I'm looking to buy something else.
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Old 07-20-14, 06:15 AM   #6
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I like Sigma and Planet Bike. I tried a Cateye once, but you can't set the odometer on the basic units and that's incredibly basic functionality IMO, so I returned it.

I've also bought $5 units off eBay, and they work OK as well, though the controls were a little confusing and I accidentally reset the unit a couple of times, gave up and bought a Planet Bike.
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Old 07-21-14, 01:15 PM   #7
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You may be able to get something cheaper, but you really can't go wrong with Cateye. They are very reliable. Cateye has been making bike computers for, well, I don't know, but maybe longer than any other company. There are tons of satisfied customers. I've had other brands, but Cateye is still a winner. Just check out the features you want, and you'll get what you need. Buy it at your local bike shop. You won't spend much more than online (if at all), and you'll be satisfied. They may even install it for you for cheap or free, and if they do, it will work very reliably.
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Old 07-21-14, 09:11 PM   #8
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I have a Bell Console 300 wireless from Target for about $22. It has all the functions I need, speed, distance, time, total miles, ave. speed and more. I have been using it for 3 months with no problems.
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Old 07-22-14, 12:02 PM   #9
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I've gotten everything from cheap $5 ebay junk to $30 Planet Bike comps, and honestly I've never had one fail. They've all been wired though.

The mounts have failed, but only after 5+ years in all seasons exposure, and I just bought a new mount.
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Old 07-22-14, 12:25 PM   #10
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I've got the Cateye Padrone and really like it. It has the larger display which is easier on my old eyes!
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Old 07-23-14, 03:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeinphila View Post
Thanks for all your suggestions.
I have an android phone and the app I used once seemed to drain my battery which is why I'm looking to buy something else.
You should be able to get 2 spare phone batteries and a charger for under $20, check Amazon for your model phone and carrier.
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Old 07-24-14, 12:32 PM   #12
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I use a Cateye Strada Cadence. I got my first one about 7 years ago. I would sometimes loosen it from its holder while wheeling my bike around (so as not to mess with my stats - as it'd no longer make electrical contact with the sensors) - and one day I forgot to click it back in all the way when I got back on my bike. I hit a bump and it popped off and then instantly got run over by at least one car. That busted it. I called up Cateye asking if they'd sell me just the computer and they just sent me one for free. To be clear - this was 100% my fault. I still use the replacement one they sent me. Quality product with awesome service.

Of course, if you don't need cadence, I'd suggest a slightly cheaper Cateye model. But I think cadence is super useful (and something a smartphone will have trouble offering you!)
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Old 07-24-14, 01:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeinphila View Post
I understand you get what you pay for.
That's only partially true.

The ones you can find at Target and Walmart work fine -- the headpiece is often a bit bigger than the more expensive name brand ones, and the magnets tend to be weaker so you may have to mount the magnet to get closer to the sensor, but they work fine and are often around $10 or less. Realibility wise, they're as good as anything else -- wires tend to get snagged and the like rather than having anything else break.

Personally, I pick up cyclocomputers at the local bike swap meet, Frankenbike. I'm not sure why there's so many, but I often find good quality name brand cyclocomputers new in the box there for $5-$10. So every one of my kid's bikes has one, and I've got a few spares if needed too.
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Old 07-24-14, 02:20 PM   #14
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Thank you all for the great replies! I'm new to this so all the comments were helpful & informative. First I'm going to google cateye and then consider getting a new battery for my phone. :-)
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Old 07-24-14, 02:57 PM   #15
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Have you thought about going the ebay route? A used Garmin Oregon series hand held can be had for between $100 and $150. Then purchase a Ram mount for the bike. Maps can be loaded for free. I used a 550T for a few years until I bellied up to the bar and bought an Edge 1000. The nice thing about the used Oregon is that after you are done with it you can sell it for close to what you paid. Even a few years down the rode....
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Old 07-25-14, 05:39 AM   #16
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A used Garmin Oregon
I think you missed the "basic" part of the question.
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Old 07-25-14, 06:25 AM   #17
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Not sure if you consider this basic, but I bought a Sigma ROX 5.0 and like it a lot.
On sale for $100 that includes HRM. You can add cadence, and a docking station that works with the free Sigma software.

Sigma Sport ROX 5.0 Cyclocomputer/Heart Rate Monitor Bundle -
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