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Old 06-18-11, 05:26 AM   #26
John_V 
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Two years ago, my wife bought me a steel frame comfort bike from a bike shop in our area. It was a Giant Sedona ST which was great for riding around the neighborhood and some of the parks with short tracks. I heard about this bike club that rides on Saturday mornings and rode with them a few times. Most of the riders there are over 50 and some over 60, as am I, and most were on hybrids and road bikes and I was having a hard time keeping up. So, after 10 months of the steel bike, I bought a hybrid (the Cypress).

I also started getting more addicted to this thing called bicycling and was riding 15 to 20 miles a day. Then I decided, maybe it would be nice to do one of those charity rides that I keep seeing on the flyers at the park. I started riding more miles on the hybrid but there just wasn't any way that I was doing 50 to 100 miles on this thing. It's a great bike, I still ride it a lot but it's too heavy, the position isn't right for climbing some of the hills where these rides take place and I was always sore after long rides. So, back to the bike shop and I bring home the road bike.

At first, I found myself riding the hybrid more than the road bike and was only riding the road bike when training for these distance rides. Now I find myself doing the opposite. After having a professional fit on my road bike, I ride it more than the hybrid and only use the hybrid when riding with friends that don't have road bikes or when I decide, "boy, I haven't ridden that bike in a while." Getting on a road bike one time and not really giving it a good ride isn't the best way to determine that you don't want one. I was happy with the steel bike until the bug bit me. If you as much as think that you are going to get bit by the bug, seriously consider a road bike because if you start doing some serious riding, you are going to eventually get one.

Just my experience .... gotta' go and get ready for my Saturday ride. Taking the Defy.
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Old 06-18-11, 05:35 AM   #27
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So far you have received what I would consider, some sage advice. Let me some up my version of the same message.
IMHO a hybrid type bike is best for you until you get your skills back and your biking fitness up. Any bike style, a hybrid, a hard tail MTB or even a cross bike will do, I would strongly recommend a bike without a suspension fork. Find something that is comfortable and you feel stable on. Don't be afraid to invest some money in it, get good components. If you make the right choice you will have this bike for a long time (let's call it N).
N+1 may come along later, it's style will depend on your desires, could be a road bike, a full blown MTB, who knows. But when you want that evening stroll around the neighborhood, that ride with the grand kids, or the quick trip down to the grocery store out will come N.
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Old 06-18-11, 12:59 PM   #28
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Fuji Absolute also has a step-through version, if that's important -- I have not-step-through one bogged-down with junk for commuting and put between 100-160 miles a week on it.

Advice: don't look at $1400 road bikes while shopping for a commuter. It will just make you buy something you didn't need.
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Old 06-20-11, 06:26 AM   #29
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Well, I bought my bike. I tested a couple Specialized and then Trek on Saturday, then went back yesterday to try one more Trek (the FX 7.3,) which was pretty nice. I immediately went to another bike store to re-ride the Specialized Vita Elite that I tried on Saturday. (I wanted to ride the Vita and then the FX back-to-back on Saturday, but the skies opened up which squashed that plan.) As soon as I started riding the Vita, I knew it was the one. Now if I can just get my rear acclimated to the saddle....

Thanks to everyone for your words of wisdom, opinions and advice.
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Old 06-20-11, 09:42 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by TomD77 View Post
I was in your position about 17 months ago. I was absolutely positive that a drop bar road bike wasn't for me, and I was right---for a while. Get into any new sport and you never know just how you are going to evolve. I bought a Bianchi Camaleonte, a hybrid but a street oriented hybrid and put over 6000 miles on it last year as I evolved into a road and paved trail rider. Amazing myself, I started this year with a drop bar road bike. While my Bianchi CTC road bike is perfect for me now, it really wasn't right for the me of a year ago.

I rode the Bianchi hybrid today because it had just rained and I didn't want the grit in the drive train of the road bike, and this hybrid is a really nice bike. The handling is very stable and position comfortable. It's pretty fast but not as fast as my road bike but it isn't supposed to be. For doing trails, around the neighborhood, riding with family or in a urban situation, you could make a strong case that this type of bike is the one to have, if you are only going to have one that is. If you're on the road pouring the miles on, well, it's road bike all the way.

Giant makes a very nice version too, I'm sure all the makers do.

Pict below, I've got stuff hanging all over this.

I couldn't agree with this post more. Right now i have a road bike, a mountain bike, and a hybrid. They each have their own use. For long, flat rides I'll use the road bike. For singletrack I use the mtb. For just cruising around or taking local rides up to around 30 miles you can't beat the hybrid. It's just easy to ride.
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Old 06-20-11, 11:03 AM   #31
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How many cycling miles have you put on in the last year? If not many at all I suggest that you consider whatever bike you buy only a temporary ride. As your cycling (not just general) fitness improves and experience accumulates over a few hundred or thousand miles you will have a much improved ability to evaluate what's a right bike for you.
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Old 06-20-11, 02:33 PM   #32
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I was going to post that you should try the women-specific Specialized Vita, and then I saw that's what you got! I recently got the Vita Sport, and I really like it. I actually like the saddle (don't know if yours is the same one). (P.S. I had tried the comparable bikes from Bianchi, Fuji, Giant, Trek, GT, Novara and Cannondale and others before I got the Specialized...it just fit me best. My daughter ended up with a Trek, and my husband with a Fuji Absolute).
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Old 06-21-11, 12:14 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by dogmomof2 View Post
Well, I bought my bike. I tested a couple Specialized and then Trek on Saturday, then went back yesterday to try one more Trek (the FX 7.3,) which was pretty nice. I immediately went to another bike store to re-ride the Specialized Vita Elite that I tried on Saturday. (I wanted to ride the Vita and then the FX back-to-back on Saturday, but the skies opened up which squashed that plan.) As soon as I started riding the Vita, I knew it was the one. Now if I can just get my rear acclimated to the saddle....

Thanks to everyone for your words of wisdom, opinions and advice.
Nice bike! The "rule" here is that you need to post pictures of your new ride.
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Old 06-21-11, 03:26 PM   #34
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Nice bike! The "rule" here is that you need to post pictures of your new ride.
Too right. Need a Garage door- of a neutral colour that will show the bike and with the chain rings facing the camera.

If no Garage door then in the lounge propped up against the sofa will do--And in case you can't get any of that- Just post a pic when you get to the top of the 2,000ft climb over 2 miles that is just a mile from your house

We do like Pics----And Pie----
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Old 06-21-11, 04:09 PM   #35
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I immediately went to another bike store to re-ride the Specialized Vita Elite that I tried on Saturday.
Start thinking about trekking bars. You'll be thinking really hard about them when you get on some longer rides and don't have any other hand positions available

Not as dramatic as drops, and there's a position just about identical to flat bars. (Maybe a bit narrower depending on your setup.)
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Old 06-21-11, 06:41 PM   #36
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Ride report?
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