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Old 07-08-07, 02:59 PM   #1
Dad77
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bike-buying advice

Trek 7.3 or 7.5; Specialized Sirrus; etc.

hi. helping teenage son pick a bike. he will do some recreational riding - to school (occasionally), friends' houses, the beach, etc. (usually no more than 5 to 8 miles each way). however, he is also planning to do longer, faster rides (on paved roads) to help build fitness for his fall (cross country) and spring (rowing) sports. he seems to be focused on bikes like trek 7.3 ($480 at local shop), trek 7.5 ($680), and specialized sirrus ($550) which are just on the border between road bikes and hybrids. open to any feedback/input, but specific questions:
1. is the $200 difference between the two Treks worth it? my sense is he'd be fine with the 7.3.
2. Sirrus costs about $70 more than the 7.3; is it better in some way, or is it just a more-expensive brand?
3. is there any other, similar brand/model he should consider?
thanks very much...
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Old 07-09-07, 04:22 AM   #2
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Has he ridden the Trek and Specialized bikes? I have a Trek 7200, a Trek road bike, and recently purchased a Specialized Sirrus. I did ride the Trek 7.5 before making my decision and the rides are definitely different in terms of body position and responsiveness. For me it was the Sirrus. It could be exactly the opposite for your son.

Another bike to consider would be the Jamis Coda. I would have checked into that if I had a local dealer.
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Old 07-09-07, 07:39 AM   #3
Dad77
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thanks for trek and sirrus input

thanks for your comments! he did try trek 7.3 and 7.5, as well as sirrus. however, there were two issues: first, trek is at one store and sirrus is at another; would be better if they were at same store and he could compare more directly. second, hard to tell much when they only let you ride around the parking lot - can't really take them out for longer, more-representative rides (although i could ask the next time around).

any opinion about whether the average rider really needs the 7.5, as opposed to the 7.3? salesperson focused on metal vs. plastic gear wheel, carbon fork, and perhaps one or two other features; not sure how critical those are, or even whether someone who isn't (yet) a serious cyclist would even notice.

there is a store nearby that carries jamis, so i'll see if they have a coda model in stock. don't know much about them, but there are quite a few favorable comments on the forums.

thanks again...
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Old 07-09-07, 07:43 AM   #4
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Cross country is a different thing. Bike riding takes time to build the endurance and aerobic fitness. For time spent, I would go cross country and not bike riding. This does'nt do diddly for your decision on bikes but I think it needs to be said.

On the school riding thing, a brand new nice bike will invariable get stolen unless he's allowed to park it in the school's administration building and next to the principal's bike. Check out the bike storage area in your local high schools and you will notice that many are beater bikes. Its worse in college.

Please do support your son or daughter when it comes to sports or physical fitness programs.
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Old 07-09-07, 08:01 AM   #5
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You need 2 bikes.

1 beater for going to school. And the other for actual rec riding.
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Old 07-09-07, 09:09 AM   #6
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sorry; let's focus on the longer-distance riding...

shouldn't have distracted the discussion by mentioning the occasional in-town uses; it's not a bike to commute to school. and i agree - the only way to really get in shape for cross country is to run, which he and his friends do plenty of. i think his two key motivations are the following: first, cycling helps build or maintain fitness in a low-impact way; and second, it's fun, all three of us enjoy it, and if he had a good bike, he would probably do more of it.

would really value people's input on the more-basic questions, such as whether the upgraded features on something like the 7.5 are really worth the substantial extra cost; and how things like the Sirrus and the Jamis Coda compare. thanks very much...
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