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Old 06-28-10, 07:03 PM   #1
lansingmike
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52 yo man needs help with bike choice.

I haven't ridden a bike much in the past five years. The bike I have is a 20 year old hybrid. Riding that bike now is killing my hands and I am limited in moving the seat down and the bars up, it won't work. The bike is killing my hands because I am overweight by roughly 75 pounds.

I happened to install a new seat on a neighbors bike today and was amazed how good it felt to have my hands above my ass riding that bike back to their home down the street. I was so impressed that I went to the Trek site, among others, and then went to the LBS to look at some bikes. I am kind of stuck on two, both Treks, one is a 7300, the other is the Navigator 3.0. The two bike are identical except the Navigator has a wider seat, wider tires, different handlebar, and different front shocks.

The tire on the Navigator is a 26 x 2.0, the tire on the 7300 is a 700 x 35c
The handlebar on the Navigator has 30mm more rise.

Essentially, the Navigator is smooth and a comfortable ride. I am a bit concerned about how comfortable this bike would be on a longer trip, say a 10 mile ride. I don't want the bike to encourage me to ride, then cause me not to ride.

The 7300 is much more similar to the bike I currently have, but would seem to have a more upright seating arrangment with the possibility of raising the handle bar a bit more to have me more upright than the default. Since this bike is much closer in seating position to my current bike, I assume that it would be fine on longer rides. I like riding trails.

If anyone has experience with either of these bikes, I would appreciate some feedback, thank you.

Links:

http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...h/hybrid/7300/
http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...v/navigator30/
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Old 06-28-10, 07:16 PM   #2
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Just a general comment. You won't ride, period, unless it is confortable. Many of us have several bikes for different purposes. Don't think of this purchase as your last bike. There is a rule - N+1 - which means we are always looking for a new bike.

Start riding on what is comfortable. By the way, 10 miles may seem long now, but it will seem short in 3 months.
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Old 06-28-10, 07:20 PM   #3
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Know matter what you ride it will take about 1500 miles to get in shape.
Ride slow.
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Old 06-28-10, 07:24 PM   #4
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Just a general comment. You won't ride, period, unless it is confortable. Many of us have several bikes for different purposes. Don't think of this purchase as your last bike. There is a rule - N+1 - which means we are always looking for a new bike.

Start riding on what is comfortable. By the way, 10 miles may seem long now, but it will seem short in 3 months.
+1 on this. What you ride now will likely change as your ride more.
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Old 06-28-10, 07:39 PM   #5
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What you ride now will likely change as your ride more.
+1
After you lose the extra 75 pounds you'll be looking at a fast road bike.
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Old 06-28-10, 07:47 PM   #6
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I agree with the above about comfort dictating how much you WANT to ride. I also like my bars up at/above the level of my seat. I have used a stem extender and adjustable stem to get my touring rig to a comfortable height. Everyone has to decide what is comfortable for themselves, and use advice for guidance, but not as a hard-and-fast rule.
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Old 06-28-10, 08:00 PM   #7
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I'm not familiar with either bike. But looking at the pictures and descriptions, looks to me like the 7300 is a better choice if eventually you want to get into either road bike or mountain bike riding. I think you'll ride it longer as you get into shape. I think your intuition is right that the Navigator looks like a comfort bike "dead end". Also, I'm skeptical about having suspension forks, especially if the primary use is on road or path. (Though if you're riding a lot of trails, that's a point in favor of the Navigator with the suspension.)

But now I've read the reviews on the Trek site, looks like some people with a similar situation to you are very happy with the Navigator. That surprised me, but I accept their judgments.

Either way eventually you'll want to get another bike, so pick what's more comfortable now and what you believe you'll ride more now.

Not sure this is very helpful, as I reread what I just wrote seems very wishy-washy to me.
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Old 06-28-10, 08:02 PM   #8
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I strongly suggest you go with the 7300. I bought a 7200 in January and have a 1000 miles on it and cannot get enough time in the saddle. If saddle is issue you can get an extra seatcover and or and pair of cycling shorts. The 7300 will roll better than the Navigator. How rough are the trails you want to ride. Remember Hybrids are a compromise. You can do both but you need to decide which you prefer. I ride mostly road but I can do some dirt roads well, though I have not done any MTB trails. Also remember once you get to the 30-35 mile ride you will be about the limit on the 7300. I ride almost everyday and though I am fit I still feel like I have hit a wall once I get over 30 miles. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 06-28-10, 09:22 PM   #9
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A nude biker is advising me to wear shorts for comfort???

My butt does not hurt when, or after, I ride. It is my hands that hurt, the meaty side of the palm, opposite the thumb. I tried new grips but they were no help. I cannot adjust the handlebars on my current bike, although I might be able to get new handle bars. Maybe I can get the 7300 with the Navigator handlebars, or the 7500 grips.

lol -> n + 1 Somehow I have to act like I am selling the current bike. Creative pricing is in order...
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Old 06-28-10, 09:29 PM   #10
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A nude biker is advising me to wear shorts for comfort???

My butt does not hurt when, or after, I ride. It is my hands that hurt, the meaty side of the palm, opposite the thumb. I tried new grips but they were no help. I cannot adjust the handlebars on my current bike, although I might be able to get new handle bars. Maybe I can get the 7300 with the Navigator handlebars, or the 7500 grips.

lol -> n + 1 Somehow I have to act like I am selling the current bike. Creative pricing is in order...
How tight are you holding the bars with your hands?

Your hands should loosely grip/sit on top of the bars with your fingers open. A tight grip may cause pain.

About N+1 - most of us don't sell the N, we just add to it, until, like me, I have 8 bicycles in the garage between my wife and myself. And I am only 70.5. Check my garage out when I am 80!!
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Old 06-28-10, 09:43 PM   #11
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It sounds like you are leaning on your hands with a lot of weight. Maybe have a good fitter help you with your fit. Also, work on your core a little to help support you upper body.
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Old 06-29-10, 06:28 AM   #12
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Bar ends may help too. They'll give you another option for your wrists and hands.

Watch what you eat and get your heart rate up for 30 minutes every day to start with the goal of an hour every day by the beginning of autumn and you'll see the pounds drop away. You'll start feeling really good when you start getting some form.
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Old 06-29-10, 06:31 AM   #13
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I strongly suggest you go with the 7300. I bought a 7200 in January and have a 1000 miles on it and cannot get enough time in the saddle. If saddle is issue you can get an extra seatcover and or and pair of cycling shorts. The 7300 will roll better than the Navigator. How rough are the trails you want to ride. Remember Hybrids are a compromise. You can do both but you need to decide which you prefer. I ride mostly road but I can do some dirt roads well, though I have not done any MTB trails. Also remember once you get to the 30-35 mile ride you will be about the limit on the 7300. I ride almost everyday and though I am fit I still feel like I have hit a wall once I get over 30 miles. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 06-29-10, 06:45 AM   #14
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After reading this thread I went to the Road Cycling forum to see what was new and found this in the thread My First (New) Road Bike.

Here is an amazing testimony to the power of regular exercise and controlled diet.

Take heart, believe. It can be done.
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Old 06-29-10, 07:06 AM   #15
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I've got an old Trek 7500, and it's OK for an upright. I'd definitely get the 7300 before the Navigator. Although neither is a recumbent.
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Old 06-29-10, 07:18 AM   #16
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I started riding to loose weight, I was 318lbs, I bought a Trek Navigator 2.0, it's a great strong comfortable bike. Im now 248lbs, and ride between 65-75 miles a week, and the only thing I had to do to my Navigator was adjust the breaks, and keep the tires properly inflated. You can't beat the Navigator for what your looking for.
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Old 06-29-10, 07:47 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
Just a general comment. You won't ride, period, unless it is confortable. Many of us have several bikes for different purposes. Don't think of this purchase as your last bike. There is a rule - N+1 - which means we are always looking for a new bike.

Start riding on what is comfortable. By the way, 10 miles may seem long now, but it will seem short in 3 months.
DnvrFox says it as well as anybody. As I read the OP my thoughts came to he/she did not identify what kind of riding they wanted to do. I would recommend taking a deep breath and hold off buying a bike for a few days.

There are a number of forums on this board that give great insight into various types of riding styles. Find out what your immediate style will be and what the future will hold. Then fit a bike from that style to your body. Then, confirm that fit. And, while you are at it, make certain the bike fits you properly.

As mentioned, if the bike does not fit you the bike will gather dust.
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Old 06-29-10, 11:52 AM   #18
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Many of us have come to this conclusion---

The only reason the first bike is for---is to tell you what the second bike is going to be.

When you start- or re-start after a long break- you do not know what you and your body require. Higher bars than the saddle- A Hybrid style bike- full race or even a recumbent (Never thought I would ever suggest that) On top of that- when even just a bit of fitness and weight loss are gained- the body will alter again. It is not long before you find that you need adjustments to the bike to get it to fit- you want better components- more gears- lower gears- to be able to get the bike fitting and riding better.

I would always suggest starting with a road or Hybrid if you are on the roads or MTB or Hybrids if rougher trails are your main riding. Just as anyone else would- but I would also suggest going to a good bike shop- taking their advice but buy cheap but not too cheap. Buy sensibly but not top of the range and not the bottom end either. Then in the next year or so you will get fitter- know what type of riding you want to do and also the type of bike you need.

Now that is when your real problem will start. So for now- buy what you feel comfortable with now. But be prepared to get another bike in about a years time.
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Old 06-29-10, 12:29 PM   #19
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take each on a 10 mile test ride
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Old 06-29-10, 01:55 PM   #20
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I never thought to ask about a ten mile ride. They offered to let me ride them, I assumed around the parking lot. My bad I guess.

Thanks for all your help folks. My decision is to not buy the Navigator. I will buy a hybrid and have the LBS fit it to me. One aspect of the hybrid I like is that there is some flexibility in the setup so it can change a bit.
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Old 06-29-10, 02:05 PM   #21
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I never thought to ask about a ten mile ride. They offered to let me ride them, I assumed around the parking lot. My bad I guess.

Thanks for all your help folks. My decision is to not buy the Navigator. I will buy a hybrid and have the LBS fit it to me. One aspect of the hybrid I like is that there is some flexibility in the setup so it can change a bit.
Only my personal take but Good Choice.

As you get fitter- you will want a better bike for the conditions you are using it for. Hybrids are a good trail and road bike. It will teach you a lot- mainly about what type of riding you want to do- but the bike will be suitable for either.

So now start on the "Essential" accessories that you will have to get
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Old 06-29-10, 02:44 PM   #22
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LOL, the essential assessories... Do you mean beyond the water bottle?

I don't think a single bike of mine has had a flat since my childhood. Do flat tires happen often enough to merit carrying spares, or just having spares?

From the day I went to the baseball game, I definitely need a light. I had come across some store in Ohio that tested lights, but that was from two years ago. From what I have read, flashlights and tape seem to be one solution. Actually, I would not mind doing that if a bracket were available. It scares me to think that a light is rated to work 1.9 hours, come on now, that is not enough time.

Is there some advantage to buying bicycle shorts versus other shorts?

Bikes don't come with fenders, is that why you buy bicycle specific clothing? Or do most of you go out and buy fenders? Maybe fender are not essentail.

Essential means to get what? Hey, I used Google and found this list.
essentials..jpg marked what I have - not much.
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Old 06-29-10, 02:53 PM   #23
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Can of Worms and "Opened" now comes to mind.
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Old 06-29-10, 04:07 PM   #24
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Let experience be the best teacher of what is "essential" or not.

Post again in a year about "essential" bicycling stuff.

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Old 06-29-10, 04:12 PM   #25
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A lot of the "options" are just what "YOU" decide you want to carry. For me the #1 is buy and wear "padded bicycle shorts", as your distance increases, you will THANK yourself that you bought them, jmho. They have MANY very cheap "headlights" that put out a decent light these days, make sure you get "LED" and not Halogon, the LED's are truely better, (Check out Cat Eye.com for lights). Since you have "trouble" with your hands, look into "GEL" riding gloves and they even have, GEL bar tape too, I use both, it helps. Getting your bike "Fitted" at a decent shop will go a long ways to getting your comfort level up from your old bike. BTW, as far as flats go, have the shop to put in, "Slime or Goo", it's like Fix-a-Flat for cars, also I've had REALLY great luck with tires that have a "Kevlar belt" under the tread. I'd still get a frame pump (recommend the Road Morph hand pump, it's got a bulit in gage and acts like a mini-version of a floor pump), tire patch kit, some plastic tire irons, flat tires, happen, no matter how far you ride, jmho. Yes, the Water Bottle and cage, I also really like my rear rack and rack bag combo, to put "stuff" in. YMMV.
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