So heres the deal. My friends's dad is getting rid of two bikes. One is a Cannondale F3000 Mountain Bike from 1998 and the other is a Cannondale R1000 Road Bike from 2001. I have both in my posession at the moment and I can only afford one bike, so I'm trying to decide between the two. I plan to use this bike for the following:
Biking in the City
Biking mostly roads and sidewalks (but being able to do some some light trail riding would be good too)
Possible Light Touring
Commuting to work and across campus at college
Bike for fitness and to loose my extra weight (I'd like to be able to use a bike trainer in my dorm room with this bike)
Travel around with the bike
Heres what I DON'T plan to do with the bike:
Tour for longer than a week
Go on any mountain bike trails
I'm pretty sure I'll end up modifying either bike to do the things I want, but I'm really at a loss as to which bike I should get. I'm going to ride both of them today (again) and see if I feel more comfortible on one or the other, but here are some general thoughts so far:
The Road Bike: I really need to get used to the sitting position on this bike. I've never ridden a road bike before and I was very nervous I'd tumble over the handle bars yesterday while riding. The ride is pretty smooth and quick. It took a little practice trying to get it to gear properly but I think I found some comfortible places. The bike also climbed really well and the ride was so smooth. The whole package looks and feels great and the American Flag paint job isn't too shabby either.
The Mountain Bike: For some reason I seemed to take off faster on this bike. The ride was pretty smooth, especially for a mountain bike, and it maintained its speed with great ease. I haven't taken it on anything adverse yet but my feeling is the beefy shocks can handle it. The road bike seemed to climb a little easier, but I don't have much experience yet on either bike. The sitting position was much more comfortible than the road bike, but I don't have as many handlebar positions with the mountain bike. Lastly, the mountain bike also looks great, and while its a little older than the road bike, it still takes a beating and rides nicely.
I'm going to head out now, but I'd like some advice on which I should go with. Also, what can I do to either bike (and which would be less expensive) to turn them into a bike suitable for the activities mentioned above. Should I change tires? Shocks? Handlebars? This is all very new to me and any comments would help! Thanks!
Surley LHT, Cannondale R1000, IBEX Ignition, Bianchi Boardwalk, KHS Milano Tandem
The R1000 will definetly not allow you to go on any sort of light trail, so that's road only if you go with this choice. It is a performance road bike that is not even best suited for commuting or touring, you could use it for this purpose but is better suited for racing, fitness road riding and long distance rides.
From your description of intended use and your experience, you will probably be better with the F3000.
Err, I should have mentioned that my big goal with this bike is to loose some weight. I added this to my "wants" list, but I plan to use this bike on a trainer in my dorm room when it gets too cold out for me to bike. I go to school in upstate NY, so the winters start in October .
Also, I just got back from my small ride and heres what I have to report. This time around I took the road bike out first and I had the best time on it. I think the whole climbing concern I had was just because I wasn't used to the bike. I was leaning towards the mountain bike yesterday, but today I think I've changed my tune and I'm favoring the road bike. Both are great machines, but there seems to be a few problems with the chain on the mountain bike. I tried a lot of different gear settings, but the chain kept slipping every so often from the back cog which really hurt my ride impression. My legs would be going at a consistance pace and then all the sudden I'd hear a clink and I'd loose my rhythm and go faster for a few seconds. I also had problems getting used to the lower resistance gearing. It felt like I had to push a little harder on the road bike but I felt the extra effort in the movement of the bike. With the mountain bike I felt like I was peddling more rappidly and not going as fast as I wanted to, even at the higher gears. I think possibly there is a problem with the bike, but who knows.
Anyway, I plan to take them both out again after dinner. I will give myself a longer break inbetween rides to make sure its not my fatigue level deciding which bike to choose. I will report back then.