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  1. #1
    Senior Member flan48's Avatar
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    "Converting" Comfort Bike

    Hello all. This is kind of a follow-up to a previous thread.
    I had asked for advice vis-a-vis swapping my Raleigh Venture comfort bike to a comfort hybrid. It was pointed out to me that by going to a narrower tire I would notice a difference. I did just that and switched from 26 x 1.95" tires to high pressure (100 psi) 26 x 1.5" slicks. As I posted before this change made an incredible difference.

    Just this past Monday I made an additional change: like most comfort bikes the seat post is cushioned in that it can float up and down. Well the amount of "float" is adjustable. So I turned it down all the way to the point where it doesn't move even when putting great downward pressure on it. As the floating seats rob much of the pedaling energy, this change has also made a large difference.

    So I think I'll go another year or so with my "new" bike and then consider a flat bar road bike. I do need an upright riding position due to a herniated disc in my lower back (at L4/L5), but I do appreciate some decent performance without struggling with and up every small rise and hill.

    Best regards
    Barry,68,New Jersey
    2012 Trek 7.4FX - Exercise for life

  2. #2
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Good to hear that the changes worked for you. This will let you ride to a different fittness level before you have to decide on the next bike.

  3. #3
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Good deal. As you become more fit you will get a better idea what kind of riding appeals to you and what kind of bike will work best for you.

    One suggestion I would offer is to keep an open mind about the option of a drop bar road bike. It is very possible to set up a bike with drop bars that will work just as well as flat bars for your back, maybe better. That may not be the route you ultimately choose to take, but don't eliminate the option without considering it and testing the possibility.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  4. #4
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    I concur w/ BluesDawg.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
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  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    You may have already seen this, but over a year ago there was a pretty lengthy thread about herniated disc and ridning. In case you haven't: Herniated Disc - anyone riding with this condition? Surgery?
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  6. #6
    Senior Member flan48's Avatar
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    Thanks very much for all of your replies.

    I am aware of the herniated disc thread, but fortunately, if I do not overdue the bike riding and weight training, I am OK - I do lots of back extension type stretching which helps immensely, along with lots of hamstring and calf stretches.

    So far, so good!

    Thanks again!
    Best regards
    Barry,68,New Jersey
    2012 Trek 7.4FX - Exercise for life

  7. #7
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    I would dump the shock seat post and replace with a traditional rigid post. You can find them on ebay or elsewhere all of the time. Should be a very small cost. I did this on my Giant Cypress.

  8. #8
    Senior Member flan48's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    Good deal. As you become more fit you will get a better idea what kind of riding appeals to you and what kind of bike will work best for you.

    One suggestion I would offer is to keep an open mind about the option of a drop bar road bike. It is very possible to set up a bike with drop bars that will work just as well as flat bars for your back, maybe better. That may not be the route you ultimately choose to take, but don't eliminate the option without considering it and testing the possibility.
    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    I concur w/ BluesDawg.
    Well, I took your advice and just yesterday picked up my new '08 Giant OCR 3 - only change was I swapped out the pedals wit pedals fro a much, much better, very "grippy" pedal.

    The bike is fantastic and very light. Withteh adjustable stem, and second set of brake levers on teh flat part of the handlebars, the riding position is almost the same as my Raleigh Venture comfort bike (for which my LBS gave me $150).

    As I posted previously, I had planned on waiting until next year, but what the heck, I did it now!
    Best regards
    Barry
    Barry,68,New Jersey
    2012 Trek 7.4FX - Exercise for life

  9. #9
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    My first road bike was an OCR3- just like a lot of other "NEW" to road bike riders. Warning now- I set the bars up to be level with the Saddle and found it to be a good ride. Problem was 6 months in and I found the bike lacked a bit. I almost thought I had made a mistake in going road from MTB. Had a chat with the LBS and a change of wheels came about. They transformed the bike. The stock wheels on the OCR are not the best around. Can't fault the bike in any other way though. EXCEPT----- The OCR with the new wheels made me realise what road biking was all about. And those "High" bars to saddle- They went on the next two bikes. Now ride with my head between my knees and definitely no back ache-which I used to get when I first went to the dark side.

    And in case you have forgotten--Pics Please.
    Attached Images Attached Images
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  10. #10
    Senior Member flan48's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
    My first road bike was an OCR3- just like a lot of other "NEW" to road bike riders. Warning now- I set the bars up to be level with the Saddle and found it to be a good ride. Problem was 6 months in and I found the bike lacked a bit. I almost thought I had made a mistake in going road from MTB. Had a chat with the LBS and a change of wheels came about. They transformed the bike. The stock wheels on the OCR are not the best around. Can't fault the bike in any other way though. EXCEPT----- The OCR with the new wheels made me realise what road biking was all about. And those "High" bars to saddle- They went on the next two bikes. Now ride with my head between my knees and definitely no back ache-which I used to get when I first went to the dark side.

    And in case you have forgotten--Pics Please.
    Ok, here is the manufacturer's picture, from their web site - absolutey accurate.

    Thanks for your response!
    Best regards
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Barry,68,New Jersey
    2012 Trek 7.4FX - Exercise for life

  11. #11
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flan48 View Post
    Well, I took your advice and just yesterday picked up my new '08 Giant OCR 3 - only change was I swapped out the pedals wit pedals fro a much, much better, very "grippy" pedal.

    The bike is fantastic and very light. Withteh adjustable stem, and second set of brake levers on teh flat part of the handlebars, the riding position is almost the same as my Raleigh Venture comfort bike (for which my LBS gave me $150).

    As I posted previously, I had planned on waiting until next year, but what the heck, I did it now!
    Best regards
    Barry
    Nice bike, Barry

    I also have back problems and have been riding a Trek road bike for the past few years without any major problems. On longer rides I find the drop bars give me several different choices to keep the back from hurting. I especially like the ability to use the drops and give the back a stretch.

    Hope you find your road bike as comfortable as I've found mine to be.
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