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  1. #1
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    Looking to get started

    Needing suggestions..... Ive been on 2 wheels since I taught myself to ride when I was 3yrs old. and now my neighbor has shown me the light on real hardware and im looking at the Raleigh cross bike.
    I could use some suggestions for a Newbie as far as what I should consider getting early on and what to stay away from.
    Shoes, helmet, cloths, etc...
    I plan on riding probably every day between 10 and 80 miles, with the more being on the weekends.
    Probably mostly roads and paths, but a bit of crazy off roading too.

    Thanks
    Newbie-jim

  2. #2
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    I would start simple. Go to a bike shop, get yourself a cheap helmet (but one that fits), some good shorts, and perhaps a jersey. Oh, and gloves and glasses are an excellent idea, and it's nice to have a cheap computer to track distances and such.

    The first big upgrade that most people make - and that for me draws the line between somebody who just rides a bit and a cyclist - is clipless pedals and cycling shoes. What you choose there depends on your aspirations - there are road-specific setups, and off-road ones that can also be used on the road.
    Eric

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  3. #3
    Senior Member rando's Avatar
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    you don't need special shoes and pedals. many of us "real" cyclists don't have special shoes or pedals.... you don't need a jersey, you don't need special clothing. you may find that you like bike shorts for longer rides... but a lot of us don't use a lot of the stuff that you're "supposed" to have and we get along fine. Just ride. a helmet is probably a good idea to start out. make sure you have a frame pump and a good floor pump with a guage on it. get a water bottle and cage. a patch kit and a few tools. learn how to patch/change a tire. if you're commuting, you might want to put a rack on the back. there's not much you "need" for riding a bike. enjoy!
    "Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world". ~Grant Petersen

    Cyclists fare best when they recognize that there are times when acting vehicularly is not the best practice, and are flexible enough to do what is necessary as the situation warrants.--Me

  4. #4
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Do start with a helmet-But make certain it fits. The shop will have plenty of models and sizes for you to try so take advantage of that. Goggles and gloves next- Gloves do help and cycling specific goggles are better than sunglasses but you can get by without them. Shorts are a must- If you don't like lycra then go for the Mountain biking shorts. Apart from that nothing essential and even the shorts you can get by without, but don't wear long trousers. A "Wedge" saddle bag next and in it you want a spare tube, tyre levers and a patch kit- possibly a multi tool but you can carry loose tools to get by with. On the bike a Pump and make certain it is good enough to pump a tyre up in 2 minutes and not eventually. Then water bottles. If you don't get one on the bike- get the LBS to throw one in and a carrier aswell.

    Then later on comes the "essentials" of 2nd water bottle- shortsleeve shirt, long sleeve shirt- 2nd pair of shorts, waterproff top, showerproof top, windproof top, leggings, clipless pedals and shoes and a friendly bank manager to pay for it all.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  5. #5
    "Per Ardua ad Surly" nelson249's Avatar
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    You can save a lot of money by shopping at department stores for basic items like helmets, gloves etc. I find that cycling specific clothing is insanely expensive and generally only bother going expensive with things like shorts. I shop around for wicking athletic shirts at department stores which cost only a fraction of specialised jerseys. They don't have a handy pocket in the rear, but I can chuck stuff in a seat bag. Clipless pedals are nice but aren't necessary and their purchase can be delayed indefinitely. There are some places not to cheap out like shorts, decent tools and a pump but generally you don't need to spend a lot of cash on the extras unless you want to. Have fun riding!
    1997 Mongoose Hilltopper, 1988 Bianchi Specialissima, 2006 Surly Cross-Check, 2010 Norco City Glide, 1947 CCM Single-speed.

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  6. #6
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    Thanks for everyone’s replies!
    The Raleigh already has eggbeaters on it and Im ready for shoes. at least i think.
    helmet, water cages & bottles, and a simple computer to keep track of distances and what not was what I had in mind.

    Great ideas on the cloths! Im not quite ready for spandex just yet.

    Any suggestions on computers ?
    Thanks again!
    James

  7. #7
    Code Warrior mwrobe1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mux11
    Any suggestions on computers ?
    From someone else on the board that answered this question for me:

    "Unless you really want to measure cadence, have 2 trip odometers, know what the temperature is outside, and ride in the rain and snow (a waterproof model)...the $12 cyclocomputer sold at X-Mart will suit just fine."

    Thats what I got...I figure when I upgrade my bike down the road...I'll upgrade that too when a little extra green becomes available. For now...I'm content with what I have.
    Elwood: It's 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, 1/2 a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.

    Jake: Hit it.



  8. #8
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    With all the sellers online and what not.... HOW do you know what is quality and what is junk?
    Like with shoes there is such a spread on pricing .... etc.
    Recommendations greatly welcomed! thanks

  9. #9
    Senior Member here and there's Avatar
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    The Schwinn cyclocomputer at wal-mart cost me $10 and lasted 1,600ish miles before I broke it. Good bang for the buck. If you're looking for something a little nicer, I'd suggest the planet bike protege 9.0. It's pretty basic, but has some nice features such as a 2nd wheel size odometer and a temperature indicator. The temp indicator was the deal breaker for me (I'm a weather dork, heh). Costs around $25 when it's on sale.

    I don't have clipless pedals/shoes yet, but I wouldn't buy shoes online without trying them on first. If you have a Performance bike near you go there. You'll be able to find a lot of the stuff you want/need for a pretty good price or check at the local bike shops. If you're not sure about the quality of a product post a question about it on the forums or use the search function. I've learned a lot about products searching the forums.

  10. #10
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    cool! thanks.

  11. #11
    Senior Member barba's Avatar
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    Cateye makes great computers that can be had for reasonable prices.

  12. #12
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    I started off with a Bib, two cages/bottles, an old underarmour top and a bike. everything else I bought one at a time, or intend to. Though pricepoint seems to have some inexpensive jerseys for sale.

  13. #13
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Warning about Clothing--- It has to fit and be comfortable. I do not buy any clothing Mail order. I have an LBS that I patronise but if they do not have what I want in clothing- I go to a shop that has a good stock. First stop in the shop is the Cut Price clothing stands. I have top rate Clothing but never pay the top price.

    Lots of other things to get you started but first thing is get the bike and helmet. The rest can come later.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

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