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Old 07-14-09, 06:13 AM   #1
twray
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60 year old needs bike advice.........

Just turned 60, 5' 9" 175 lbs in fair shape. I have ridden some 20 years ago on a road bike and would like to start riding again.

With many different bike configurations today I am having trouble making a choice of what to buy. I live in rural North Carolina and will probably only ride on pavement. I would need a bike with lower gearing until I get in better shape due to hills in the area. My budget is $800-$1200.

Need some suggestions from people my age on what are some good choices, a road bike, touring, or hybrid.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-14-09, 06:27 AM   #2
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Do you have a good bike shop in your area. You can learn a lot there.

After finding that out, will you be doing your own maintenance or are you dependant on finding a good bike shop (this has a major bearing on what you buy)

If you can do your own maintenance then you are an elegable candidate for online purchases of one sort or another. If not then it's best to start the hunt for a "good" LBS first, then let that guide you to what is available.
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Old 07-14-09, 06:32 AM   #3
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I live in rural North Carolina and will probably only ride on pavement. I would need a bike with lower gearing until I get in better shape due to hills in the area. My budget is $800-$1200.
If you had a road bike before and like it - go that route again. On you budget you will be able to get a fairly good bike. Find a good LBS. Any bike you try after being off a bike for 20 years will feel odd, a cruiser or hybrid or even an MTB will feel better at first but after you get back into it you will find it might not suite your needs.

As far as gears go - with the standard road bike gearing I doubt you will find yourself looking for a faster gear. The issue is whether or not you will want a lower gear. Most of us in hilly terrain may not care to admit it - but we can usually find some hills that are extremely hard to climb even though we've been doing it for years and sometimes wish we had a 28 or 29 on our rear cassett, a few low gears in your back pocket are a good thing.
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Old 07-14-09, 06:40 AM   #4
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I am your age and just 9 lbs heavier. I have a Specialized Sirrus which is flat bar and a Roubaix which is a traditional road bike. Both are triples so the gearing has a range you might like. I agree with the advice about visiting your LBS and trying several different bikes. Sounds like you would probably need about a 54cm frame, but in any case make sure you get the right size. Given your history and the type of riding you will be doing I would stay away from a hybrid.
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Old 07-14-09, 08:01 AM   #5
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I live in rural North Carolina and will probably only ride on pavement. I would need a bike with lower gearing until I get in better shape due to hills in the area. My budget is $800-$1200.
Don't forget to ask the folks in the Southeast Regional subforum. Lots of NC folks there. They ride the same roads and can also recommend good bike shops.
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Old 07-14-09, 12:28 PM   #6
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I just turned 63, 220 lbs and have only been riding about 5 years. I let the salesman at the LBS talk me into a hybrid, it's hanging in my garage. My road bike on the other hand gets a good weakly workout. If you are serious there are many good entry level road bikes on the market. Forget the flat bar bikes, get the drops. Riding in the drops are much more comfortable and less of a strain especially on longer rides.
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Old 07-14-09, 02:05 PM   #7
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Since you are an old road bike rider, I would suggest getting another road bike. You might want to get a "comfort" bike which is supposed to maximize well.... comfort over performance. If you are contemplating steep climbs, having low gears is a really good idea. So you might think of a triple chain ring.

There are a number of nice bikes in your price range, but it you are like most people, you will probably find yourself going for something just a bit over your price range.
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Old 07-14-09, 02:37 PM   #8
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I just turned 63, 220 lbs and have only been riding about 5 years. I let the salesman at the LBS talk me into a hybrid, it's hanging in my garage. My road bike on the other hand gets a good weakly workout.
My workouts are pretty weak also, but I bet you meant weekly.
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Old 07-14-09, 04:09 PM   #9
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I My road bike on the other hand gets a good weakly workout.
You did mean weekly didn't you? Just sayin'

Last edited by RonH; 07-16-09 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 07-14-09, 04:38 PM   #10
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Hello twray; youll get plenty of bike for a 1000 dollars I like my 7300 trek for that back road Carolina rideing 28 inch road tires and any tire you use keep them full of air. good luck ///you will probably end up with more than one bike ;Us old folks have trouble desideing what to ride./Kenneth
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Old 07-14-09, 05:25 PM   #11
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My wife and I went through exactly the same situation, albeit we were a few years older. Biggest challenge will be getting the right fit the first time around, but a good LBS will go a long way toward doing right by you. My wife's year old Giant is for sale because her short torso can't handle a men's small frame. I've had 2 stems on my Giant and it's ok, but not great. Our tandem on the other hand fits me like a glove. Be skeptical of a frame that puts the handlebars 3+ inches below the seat unless you see yourself as being really flexible (and younger?). I don't ride much in the drops, but you really want to have some level of comfort there for headwinds and perhaps downhills.

50-39-30 with a 12-27 10 spd cassette works well for me. I don't use the 30t chainring much anymore, but at my age why should I suffer on a 13% grade?

Good luck!
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Old 07-14-09, 05:47 PM   #12
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My wife and I (I'm 60.5 and she is... younger) got back into riding after a 20 year hiatus. We first bought Giant FCRs, fitness bikes with upright seating and flat bars. They were better than most of the bikes we had ever had and were a good return vehicle, however we outgrew them in less than 6 months.

We looked at lots of bikes and talked to lots of folks and spent a lot of time at the LBS. When we were ready, we got deals on 2009 models that were already being closed out. Without giving details, my wife's bike came in at what we had thought would be our top price, but she got twice the bike we expected. Mine came in at about 50% more than I had planned to spend, but I saved about 30% on a top of the line bike that fits me to a "T!"

We have more than doubled our mileage in a little over a month and our speed and comfort are better than they were on the FCRs.

Whatever you decide to buy, go to a LBS where you can get fitted! There are so many little tweaks that go into tailoring the bike! If your LBS doesn't have the wherewithal, it would be worth traveling to and paying for a fitting after you make your purchase.

Enjoy the ride!
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Old 07-14-09, 06:11 PM   #13
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I'm 64, 200 pounds, and hadn't ridden a bike since I was a kid when I bought a Specialized Allez last month for $800. I have 300 miles on it now and love it.
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Old 07-15-09, 08:40 PM   #14
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Don't forget Craigs List. I just bought a slightly used carbon fibre bike in my size at a very reasonable price. For a few dollars the local bike shop went through it adjusting and lubricating everything. After three days riding it I am very satisfied and about half the price of a new bike, even including the bike shop fee.
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Old 07-16-09, 12:04 PM   #15
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I think the most important thing is to find a bike you enjoy riding.

That requires a bit of testing, but good bike shops are happy to facilitate.
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Old 07-16-09, 01:42 PM   #16
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I'm 73 years old (this year only). 5'-11" and shrinking, 167 pounds. I ride a Cannondale Synapse 5 carbon fiber DF and an Easy Racers Tour Easy recumbent, soon to be replaced by an aluminum Gold Rush with about the same specs but a little lighter. I ride about 5500 miles a year, down from a few years ago when I rode 8000 miles per year.

At 60, you can probably do whatever you have the will to do.
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Old 07-16-09, 08:59 PM   #17
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Good site for newbies

If you're just getting started (or started again), this site might be helpful. Especially strong on getting started and touring.

http://www.biketoledo.net
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Old 07-16-09, 10:36 PM   #18
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I'm 50 something and I ride mostly Recumbents. Please have a look at them and test ride one or two. Won’t be sorry!
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