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  1. #1
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    Starter touring/road bike for 13-year old girl

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    Join Date: Mar 2007 Our family is beginning to get serious about road biking. This is being led primarily by my 16-year old son who is really digging the 40 mile trips the local bike group does every weekend. The one being left out is our 13-year old daughter. She has an inexpensive off-road bike but it won't do for these kinds of affairs.

    I'd like to get her a good road bike that will fit her and allow her to keep up the pace on these tours. She is about 5' tall and will likely grow a few more inches. I doubt she'll make 5'4" when she's finished growing (she's a shrimp but she's our shrimp).

    I'm familiar with the Trek WSD bikes and my wife has a Giant bike designed for a woman. So, with the possibility that my daughter will grow somewhat more, but not much, can anyone make a recommendation for a good starter road/touring bike?

    thanks

    dave in houston

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    The Surly Long Haul Trucker touring bike comes in sizes 42cm, 46cm, 50cm, all with 26" tires., which would be much better for someone of your daughters size. The larger sizes use 700c tires.

    The LHT is by no means the lightest bike out there, but it's solid and a fun ride. I'm very happy with mine. It can be purchased at most LBS (Local Bike Shops) through the main bike part distributor in the States, QBP, as either a complete bike for around $1000 or a frame set for around $400. The complete bike of course is a much better deal.

    http://www.surlybikes.com/lht_comp.html
    http://www.surlybikes.com/longhaul.html

  3. #3
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    Terry do some good bikes in road bike and lightweight hybrid style. There is a lot to be said for using 26" MTB wheels as in the Susan-B model, you can get tyres from 1" upwards. 650c is a bit limiting for more practical uses.

  4. #4
    Caustic Soccer Mom apclassic9's Avatar
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    You might also look at the Trek 1000 (@$650-700). Take her to the LBS & see what they have in your price range, and see what fit, what they can order, etc.
    As with mud, life, too, slides by.

  5. #5
    Tom (ex)Builder twahl's Avatar
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    My daughter has a Fuji Finest in a 47 I think. She's not 13 yet, but I'm afraid it may be small for her this year since she is kind of tall. She did her first metric at 10, so don't underestimate what yours can do!
    Tom

    "It hurts so good..."

  6. #6
    Poseuse. sweetharriet's Avatar
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    http://www.feltracing.com/06/06_bikes/f24/

    [eta: yeah, that's for young'uns, but hey, if you have a young'un consider getting one of those too ]
    Last edited by sweetharriet; 03-30-07 at 01:36 PM.
    Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling. ~James E. Starrs

  7. #7
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    I am just 5'2" and ride a 42 cm Fuji Finest 1.0. They have quite a few women specific designs and a nice touring bike as well. They are also priced quite well for what you get. A 42 -46cm bike is probably approximately the range you are looking for. But the bike shop can do the actual fitting.

    The touring bike comes in a 43cm and is bronze
    http://www.fujibikes.com/2007/bikes.asp?id=290&subcat=2

    The semi-racing bike comes in a 44cm and is pink

    http://www.fujibikes.com/2007/bikes.asp?id=294&subcat=3
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  8. #8
    M_S
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    How much money do you really want to sink into a bike that she could outgrow at any minute? When I was 13 I had a rigid frame 350 dollar hybrid that I rode on lots of longer distance rides (50 plus miles). (And it snowed in July! )

    If you must get her a true road bike, shop around used, or see if any bike shops near you do rebuilds of older frames.

    Also, at 13, she may not physically need a woman-specific design. Just a thought.

  9. #9
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    I seen Giant still makes a 24" wheel roadbike.It was a more popular niche,pre MTB era.Once every company had a model.I'd look at used bikes too. Chris

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by sweetharriet
    http://www.feltracing.com/06/06_bikes/f24/

    [eta: yeah, that's for young'uns, but hey, if you have a young'un consider getting one of those too ]
    My son has one of those and loves it! It's pricey for a kiddo bike but we do some long rides (his longest is 47 miles). I can't quite fathom expecting him to come along for rides like that without being willing to outfit him properly

    Another perk - the Felt will go to my step-daughter when she gets older. Knowing that helped some of the pain when we forked over the coin for it.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Really small road bikes are a specialty area. The issue is building a bike with a short top tube to fit a smaller person while avoiding too much toe overlap with the front wheel. Bike manufacturers have a variety of solutions to the issue. I'd take the time to see what they have done to resolve it. Personally, I'm suspicions of any bike that has 700c wheels.

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