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Old 06-05-04, 02:44 PM   #1
sylvia
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Searching for new bike

I am looking for a new road bike and trying to make a decision whether to invest in a bike especially designed for women or not. I am rather small, at 115 lbs and 5'4" but mainly want to ride for recreation, pleasure, noncompetitive, and need to consider comfort and safety. I will be riding at the most probably 30 miles at a time, yet want a bike light enough to keep up with friends. I am looking for ease of handling (gears, shifting,) etc. Any ideas? I have been told about Cannondale and Specialized. Should I consider the women's or stick to the regular bikes and just buy components that would suit me. I am really not knowledgeable about what components to look for, but would prefer the latest designs.
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Old 06-05-04, 05:19 PM   #2
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I don't think anyone here can answer the WSD question. Your body may very well prefer 'standard' frame rather than wsd. If you can afford it, go to a shop who'll measure you up and help you choose the best frame for your body. The shop may very well suggest a frame you've never heard of, so I wouldn't get attached to Specialized or Cannondale, tho they do make good stuff. A female friend got measure and it turned out that one of the best bikes for her was an Orbea -- I had never heard of 'em, but it turns out their a Spanish company that makes quality stuff. And my friend is totally in love with her bike. She had been looking randomly for more than a year with zero success.
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Old 06-07-04, 11:59 AM   #3
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One way of producing a light, nimble roadbike for smaller riders is to use smaller wheels. Most production small roadbikes use the 650c size, where tyres come in thin or extra-thin for racing. Only a few custom builders make nice lightweight road bikes using 26" MTB wheels. These tyres come in a wide variety of sizes from thin to very wide, and are ideal for moderate day touring.
There has been a good review of Luna road bikes in the women's section.
If the prices seem a bit steep, at least use the site for some inspiration on how a small bike should look.
http://www.lunacycles.com/
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Old 06-07-04, 12:45 PM   #4
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I almost recommended a Wal-Mart bike but because of your size and weight an overly-standardized heavy loser cruiser might not fit the job. Your best bet is what the above users already said...
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Old 06-07-04, 11:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sylvia
I am looking for a new road bike and trying to make a decision whether to invest in a bike especially designed for women or not. I am rather small, at 115 lbs and 5'4" but mainly want to ride for recreation, pleasure, noncompetitive, and need to consider comfort and safety. I will be riding at the most probably 30 miles at a time, yet want a bike light enough to keep up with friends. I am looking for ease of handling (gears, shifting,) etc. Any ideas? I have been told about Cannondale and Specialized. Should I consider the women's or stick to the regular bikes and just buy components that would suit me. I am really not knowledgeable about what components to look for, but would prefer the latest designs.
Besides Luna as suggested by MichealW, have you tried Terry Precision? Georgina Terry practically started the market for performance-oriented women-specific bicycles. Here's the link:

http://www.terrybicycles.com/

A proper fitting process at a good local bike store using any one of several measuring systems may help. Not to burden you with lots of material, but here's the highly informative and sensible cyclist Sheldon Brown's page (with links) on fitting a bike:

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/frame-sizing.html

Lastly, don't hesitate to specify a handlebar and/or a handle stem swap even if it means paying a little extra so that a standard bike truly fits you. Those few inches too long or too short may contribute to discomfort on a long ride that may be unnoticeable on a test spin 'round the block. Good luck!
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Old 06-08-04, 12:22 AM   #6
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Like I always tell customers, 99% of girls I have ever ridden with and sold bikes to ride on a "men's" bike even after trying the WSD bikes. If you are in the 1% that fit better on a WSD, go for it!
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