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  1. #1
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    Second Bike - Advice on What to Get

    I have a Trek road bike that I ride for fitness and long rides. I'd like to get something to ride around town/city, to the store, bummin around with my 10-year old, etc. Something to just hop on and go w/out getting all geared up with shoes and bike clothing, etc. I'm wondering if anyone has advice on what to get, a cross bike vs comfort bike, etc. Any advice on a type and a specific brand/bike name would be awesome. Thanks!

  2. #2
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    A mountain bike in the $300 price range is a great bike. And, around September 1st, many bike shops are selling 2008 mountain bikes for 20% or 30% lower than their regular price, to make room for 2009 models arriving in October.

    Mountain bikes are built in huge quantities, so a $300 mountain bike typically has bottom brackets, headsets, and hubs that are "tougher" and more durable than comparable parts on a $700 road bike.

    The plush tires make these bikes a pleasure to ride on city streets, as well as on dirt and gravel roads, and on dirt paths through urban bikes. Their "go anywhere" design allows you to ride through mud and snow...in many parts of the USA, you can ride a mountain bike 365 days a year.

    Want to ride fast? Bike messengers put light slick tires on their mountain bikes and say that they are as fast as a road bike for a two or three mile inner-city ride...just a LOT more comfortable.

    The quality and location of a bike shop is more important than the brand of the bike. At a given price point, a bike from Trek, Specialized, Giant, or KHS will be of very similar quality. Having a relationship with a bike shop that is just a mile or two from home is a great asset. That makes it easy to go by once a month or so to get the bike checked over, or to get minor adjustments. Don't buy from a shop twenty miles from home just to save $50...a relationship with the shop in YOUR neighborhood is worth far more than that.

  3. #3
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    Thanks, I do have a local bike shop where I bought my road bike several years ago that's not too far from home and they are great. I hadn't thought of a mountain bike, I see so much about "comfort" and "cross" bikes that it gets confusing. Too many choices!

  4. #4
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    I'm personally looking for a fixie/ss they say great winter training bikes. Build better circles

  5. #5
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    The folks who don't know that a mountain bike can BEAT a road bike for a two or three mile ride in the inner-city simply don't know much about riding a bike. The speed of a bike (until about 25mph or 30 mph) is controlled by your cadence, how fast you are spinning the pedals.

    At a steady 25 mph (the speeds pro cyclists ride on a closed course) air resistance becomes the most important factor, and the lower aero postion of a road bike is a big advantage. In the inner city, with stop signs and red lights every hundred yards or so, cylists accelerate from zero to about 15 mph, hit the brakes for the next red light, and so on. Cadence control speed.

    Bike messengers in Houston tend to prefer moutain bikes because of the torn up condition of Houston's inner city roads. Pot holes and broken concrete everywhere. The mountain bikes can take a straight line from A to B. The messengers on road bikes avoid the worst roads, take detours, have to dodge around the pot holes and the broken concrete, and stop and fix flat tire after flat tire. When you are paid ONLY for how many packages you actually deliver, you ride the BEST bike, and that is a mountain bike.

    I ride a 20 mile inner city loop, and the times on my mountain bike are about the same as on my lightest road bike. City riding is "stop and go", and with only a hundred yards or two hundred yards to the next stop sign, it would be rare to be riding at 20 mph. Air resistance is NOT a significant factor when you are riding at speeds typical of inner city riding. But, a bike that is tough, resiliant, stable, and comfortable is essential.

    The big difference? The plush tires of the mountain bike absorb road shock. The higher bar position makes it easy to watch the SUV on my left and the 18 wheeler on my right. And, it prevents neck and back pain. After 20 miles on a mountain bike, I'm ready to go on another ride.

    A bike does not make you "fast". Your speed is controlled by how fast you can spin the pedals. But, riding a mountain bike makes spinning those pedals a lot more fun.

  6. #6
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    Thanks, what about hybrid bikes

    A mountain bike might be the way to go, although some seem a bit heavy (I am a smaller size female) loading it off and on my car (I'm not wimpy, but spoiled by my light road bike). Also, what about a hybrid style bike? Lastly, I can't decide weather smaller or larger wheels/tires are better for this type of city/town riding... thoughts?

  7. #7
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    A three speed internal geared rear hub crank forward bike like a Trek Pure or Electra Townie.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  8. #8
    Portland Fred banerjek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daisycakes View Post
    I have a Trek road bike that I ride for fitness and long rides. I'd like to get something to ride around town/city, to the store, bummin around with my 10-year old, etc. Something to just hop on and go w/out getting all geared up with shoes and bike clothing, etc. I'm wondering if anyone has advice on what to get, a cross bike vs comfort bike, etc. Any advice on a type and a specific brand/bike name would be awesome. Thanks!
    If you must ask, you are not ready yet. You will know the right bike when you see (or learn about) it because you will immediately connect with it. In that sense, it's like choosing a new puppy.

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