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  1. #1
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    Advice on what sort of bike to buy

    I have been riding whenever I had a bike since I was young, which is not all too often because I manage to beat my bikes to death within the first year, and most tubes are done within a month.
    I don't want to pay more than $300-$400. I weigh between 190 and 200 depending on the week. 6'0'' I don't want a road bike, because I have to do a little bit of trail riding to get back to my house, and I dont want a mountain bike, because my main focus will be riding on pavement, and I dont want a comfort bike because I'm in good shape and I'm looking for a workout. Single-speed is best because I can handle it and I manage to destroy all derailleurs.
    I have looked online a good deal, but I can only find bikes that look 100% trail oriented or 100% road oriented. So if anyone could suggest a company to look at or at least the terminology to use it would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Lanterne Rouge cb400bill's Avatar
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    Hybrid
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  3. #3
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    Mountain bikes are the BEST pavement bikes. Put on some light weight slicks, and over a two or three mile ride, you will be going plenty fast. Bike messengers in Houston prefer mountain bikes because they are as fast as a road bike, but FAR more comfortable.

    Mountain bikes, even $300 entry level models, use tough reliable bottom brackets, hubs, and headsets. They are the toughest bike per dollar spent, and the most durable.

    My ten year old mountain bike rides like new. I expect it will be providing me with good service when it is twenty years old as well.

    Most single speed bikes on the market are over-priced. They often cost MORE than a 24 speed mountain bike with a frame and wheels of equal quality. If you really hate shifting, a shop can remove your shifters, shorten the chain, and you can run your mountain bike as a "one speed". Because you have eight cogs, you can chose exactly the ONE speed you prefer.

    Bike brands are not important. Bike shops are crucial. Visit every bike shop within five miles of your home. Talk to the staff. Ask questions. Buy from the shop where you feel most comfortable. That makes it easy to bring your bike by once a month for a quick check-over and minor adjustments.

    Buy something on each of those visits...an inner tube...a couple of energy bars...a shop owner has a LONG memory for the customers who are buying stuff ten or twelve times a year, even if it is a $5 purchase. Guess whose bike gets worked on first?
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 08-29-08 at 08:40 PM.

  4. #4
    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
    Mountain bikes are the BEST pavement bikes. Put on some light weight slicks, and over a two or three mile ride, you will be going plenty fast. Bike messengers in Houston prefer mountain bikes because they are as fast as a road bike, but FAR more comfortable.
    This is simply not true. A road bike with a decent rider will beat a mountain bike with a decent rider any day. First mountain bikes are much heaver than road bikes. And mountain bikes usually don't have the gearing to hang with a road bike at faster speeds.


    And you do not want a mountain bike for pavement. At the very least a hybrid. Even better a path bike (hybrid with no shocks) or a comfort bike.

    Comfort of a mountain bike over a road bike is debatable. While mountain bikes might be more comfortable in the short haul they just might not hold up over longer distances. The lack of hand positions can really lead to discomfort.
    "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it."

    Albert Einstein

  5. #5
    CAT5 joe_5700's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=spinnaker;7370484]This is simply not true. A road bike with a decent rider will beat a mountain bike with a decent rider any day. First mountain bikes are much heaver than road bikes. And mountain bikes usually don't have the gearing to hang with a road bike at faster speeds.

    QUOTE]

    +a thousand. Sounds like you need a fitness bike. Look at a Trek 7.5.

  6. #6
    CAT5 joe_5700's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston View Post
    Mountain bikes are the BEST pavement bikes.
    Really? Lets got to a real world scenario with 3 riders in about the same shape with 3 completely different bikes on a 45 mile ride. Rider 1 on a road bike, rider 2 on a hybrid, rider 3 on a mountain bike. Rider 1 patiently waits for rider 2 and 3...after 30 miles rider 3 calls for his wife to pick him up after he is exhausted. Rider 2 tries to pick up pace but rider 1 has on problems keeping up. I was rider 2 by the way. Mountain bikes are NOT the best pavement bikes. Not by a LONG shot. How on earth can wider less efficient tires be the best as well as a heavier frame? Road bikes rule the pavement....

  7. #7
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    All the hybrids Ive seen have been way expensive.

    I would kill myself on a road bike. Id fly.

  8. #8
    Senior Member ilmooz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emeril View Post
    All the hybrids Ive seen have been way expensive.
    This one's decent and hits your price range:

    http://www.konaworld.com/08_dew_w.htm

  9. #9
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    I usually have ten or twelve bikes to chose from. Sometimes (rarely) a road bike is the BEST choice for a particular ride. But, if I could only own ONE bike to ride across inner-city Houston, it would be a mountain bike.

    Inner-city Houston is filled with streets with broken concrete, pot holes, construction and destruction. Sometimes a bike trail is concrete, sometimes asphalt, or sometimes it is just dirt and mud. When detouring around a road closed for construction, you may be riding through a muddy field, or through two foot high weeds.

    Inner-city riding demands a bike that is tough. Tough wheels, with beefy hubs and rims. Big tough tires. Road bikes are okay for the guys who ride ten Saturday afternoons each year down a smooth suburban highway. But, folks who ride 300 days AND 300 nights a year through bombed out city neighborhoods need a bike tough enough for the job, and that is a mountain bike.

    Bike messengers in Houston make more money when they deliver more packages. The smart messengers ride mountain bikes, because they get you from A to B faster in the inner city than any other sort of bike. And, bike messengers don't have time to be fixing flat tires.

    Downtown riders are NOT on a fifty mile "cruise" down a suburban road...they are riding a block. Stopping for a red light. Riding two blocks. Stopping for a stop sign. They are surrounded by vehicles on every side. It is battle, not a pleasure cruise...for a war, you need the correct weapon.

    The speed of a bike is controlled by how fast you spin the pedals, and air resistance is NOT a significant factor in the "hundred yard dashes" from one urban stop sign to the next. Riding a road bike in the inner city is like driving a Corvette up a gravel road in the Rockies...doable, but dumb.

    I am an AARP member, but I get across downtown Houston as fast, or faster, than the idiots on road bikes who are a third my age. But, only because I'm on a mountain bike.
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 08-30-08 at 08:39 AM.

  10. #10
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    lately, I've been seeing a lot of very attractive "urban mountain bikes" for lack of a better term. A good example is the K2 Astral:
    http://www.k2bikes.com/index.php?bra...3.0&2007=false

    Mountain-bike frame geometry and components, skinny high-pressure tires, etc. very light, very nimble.

    Trek has a couple of these in it's current lineup as well; there are others. Of course, you can pretty well convert a standard MTB with appropriate tires; that's essentially what our police patrol bikes are.

    The old adage is still pretty much true; "If you want to go fast and far, get a roadster". If you want a fast, simple, light bike for short hops, one of these urban MTBs might be the ticket.

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