Hello all, I recently decided to take up road cycling as a means to help quit smoking. As long as my lungs are burning somehow, I'll be happy. I enjoyed cycling as part of my soccer training in college and wish to take it up again. I decided on road vs. trail for a few reasons:
1. The less upright riding position will force me to stretch my back.
2. More hand placement options...keep comfortable by switching positions.
3. I'm a super-competitive person and while racing is not in my future, I'd like to go both fast and far and monitor my progress along the way.
All that being said, I discovered that road bikes are alot more expensive than I thought. I went to 10 cycling (4 pure cycling, 6 department) stores in my area and the cheapest new bike I found was a 2004 Fuji for $499.00 that was scuffed up from being bumped around the shop. So I did some looking and research on the internet and found a 2005 Motobecane (USA) Super Mirage on Ebay for $297 + $40 shipping. Apparently the Motobecane license ran out and a US group claimed it recently and has begun producing bikes again. What I'd like to know from the experienced cyclists is:
1. Did I get good value for the bike (ie. the components)?
2. What else at a minimum will I need to get on the road ($200 or less if possible)?
I've included the BikesDirect.com listing for the 2004 Super Mirage and the 2005 Motobecane.com listing also. I'd also like to know what differences I should expect my bike to have from the 2004 listing. All thoughts and criticism are appreciated!!!
Shimano Sora Triple STI 24 Speed, Polished Forged Aluminum Triple Crank, DuraForte OS Chromoly Frame, DuraForte Chromoly Fork, Alex Double Wall Wheelset, M-Wings Competition Bar, Stem and Seatpost
2004 bikesdirect.com listing:
Motobecane has improved the Super Mirage for 2004. Now handmade with precision TIG welds that are lighter and stronger ever. Still the same great comfy magic carpet ride with improved Dura Forte Chromoly steel tubing.
Compare to the Fuji Ace, the Super Mirage offers the same great comfy and stable ride of steel but with more gears for even greater versatility.
Frame: Handmade Full Dura Forte Chromoly, Precision TIG welded with Rack and Fender brazeons
Fork: Full Dura Forte Chromoly Unicrown
Derailleurs: Shimano sora
Shifters: Shimano sora STI
Brakes: Shimano sora
Hubs: Alloy with 8 speed cassette
Rims: 700 x 20 Alloy 36H
Crank: Cyclone Alloy Triple 52/42/30T
Saddle: Velo racing with Kevelar side panels
Seatpost: Alloy micro-adjust
Pedals: Alloy quill with toeclips and straps
Tires: Maxxis 700 x 25 C
Colors: Jett Black Gloss
Sizes: 50 cm, 53 cm, 56 cm, 59 cm, 62 cm
Compare this bike at $899.95, but bikesdirect.com offers
it for only $425.00 including free delivery to your door.
Try cross-posting this in the road cycling forum. I think you'll get some more action there...
From what I can see, it looks like a decent starter bike for pretty cheap. You'll hear folks complain about the Sora components, but you'll just have to see for yourself and draw your own conclusions.
First, get a good helmet. Then, if you want to track yourself, get a cheap cyclocomputer so you can guage your speed, distance and time on the bike. Know that your saddle might need replacing. Definitely some padded shorts will help. In the future, you might want to go to clipless pedals and shoes.
Also lurk around in the road cycling forum. You'll find you'll learn a lot. Be advised there are some folks with strong opinions.
Congrats on your decision to stop smoking! And welcome to the world of cycling.