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Old 05-22-09, 08:52 AM   #1
protolink
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Looking for a Sub- $500 MSRP All purpose bike

I am going to college soon and need a new bike that will last. It will be driven on mostly pavement, but also some dirt/gravel trails from time to time, so I was leaning toward a mountain bike that is good on the road or a hybrid bike. So far I was looking at the Giant Sedona and Boulder, the Specialized Rockhopper and Crosstrail/Crosstrail Sport and The Trek 7.2FX. I am afraid that some of the hybrids might be a bit too roady to use on rough dirt or gravel trails but that the mountain bikes might cause back strain after extended periods and require more effort because of the different wheel size and gearing. Any thoughts or other suggestions? I havent ridden any of them yet, but I will before buying.
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Old 05-22-09, 09:00 AM   #2
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Giant Cypress.
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Old 05-22-09, 10:04 AM   #3
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Consider a folding bike, as it is easier to store and transport.

extended periods? You traveling cross country. You are unlikely to be on the bike that long at college.
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Old 05-22-09, 10:10 AM   #4
Ka_Jun
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Folder
Kona Smoke
Novara Buzz V
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Old 05-22-09, 10:48 AM   #5
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1- at your price point, buy used
2- because you're going to be riding it and locking it on campus, buy used
3- a hybrid is fine on dirt trails and gravel. Anything bigger, go MTN bike and swap tires as needed: slicks when you're on the road a lot and something with bite on the dirt
4- Unless you buy a real PoS bike, most bikes will last four years
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Old 05-22-09, 12:15 PM   #6
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KHS urban X
any good?

http://khsbicycles.com/06_urban_x_09.htm
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Old 05-22-09, 06:01 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by geo8rge View Post
Consider a folding bike, as it is easier to store and transport.

extended periods? You traveling cross country. You are unlikely to be on the bike that long at college.
I should probably say also that I take rides occasionially, the longest i've ever done was around 55 miles, probably averaging around 15.
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Old 05-22-09, 07:22 PM   #8
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Buy a recumbent. Because someone else always says buy one or a folder and the folder contingent already spoke up.

I'd go with a Specialized Hardrock and put combo tires on it like Kenda Kross's on it or similar. You're not going to win races on it but it's a nice durable bike that'll hold up and not cost an arm and a leg. If you're determined to spend more $ buy the Rockhopper.
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Old 05-23-09, 10:12 PM   #9
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Buy something used and save some cash for accessories.
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Old 05-23-09, 11:07 PM   #10
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If you want sturdy and dependable for that price I would look into a Giant Transend DX. It may list a bit higher but I have even seen the LX discounted to about $500.00. It comes equipped with fenders and a rack that expands wide enough to carry a few pizza boxes.

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bikes/lifestyle/2306/32162/

You could turn it into a real workhorse with a front rack and some of them come with trekking bars.
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Old 05-24-09, 07:01 AM   #11
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Sounds like you need two bikes, an old rigid mountain bike for campus will make you look cool, and an old road bike will make you look even cooler. With the spare change, you can get another set of wheels for the mountain bike and put on some slicks!
To make a bike last, you'll need a lock or two!
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Old 05-24-09, 07:18 AM   #12
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If you are 200+lbs, then go with a hardtail MTB. If you are under that, (and plan on staying under it) then go with the hybrid.

jm2c
I'm well over 200lb and went with a hybrid and I'm glad I did.
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Old 05-24-09, 10:37 AM   #13
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I have a friend with a Crosstrail. Nice bike and would fit your needs. A Specialized Globe Vienna would give you a higher seating position for your back and still be okay in the dirt, not so much gravel though.
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Old 06-02-09, 01:09 PM   #14
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If you are 200+lbs, then go with a hardtail MTB. If you are under that, (and plan on staying under it) then go with the hybrid.

jm2c

i am about 240 and have no issues with my redline 520 hybid. rides me just fine. i have been riding hybrids for 20 years in that weight range and my bikes were never worse for the wear and tear i put on them.
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Old 06-02-09, 01:38 PM   #15
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If I were you, I'd go for a used 29er mountain bike frame and non-suspension fork. Add some super-heavy-duty 9-speed Shimano compatible wheels (Velocity Dyads are good rims), a good set of brakes, an old el-cheapo crankset, and a 9-speed to single speed adapter kit and you have a minimalist commuter bike that can become a proper mountain bike by swapping the tires.

And if you get tired of having a single-speed bike......remove the adapter and bolt on a 9-speed cassette and derailleur!
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Old 06-02-09, 08:24 PM   #16
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i'd get an old rigid mountainbike, put some slick and slightly thinner tires on, and ride. it'll serve you fine, and it won't break the bank if it gets stolen. get some good lights, a GOOD LOCK,

i'm going car free in college (next year) and plan to have my 90's fender-clad rigid mountainbike. it fits me really well, and the steel ride is great. I can ride all day on it, and it's super comfy.
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Old 06-02-09, 09:43 PM   #17
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I have a Rockhopper and a Giant Cypress (its the same as the sedona but different tires/wheels). The Rockhopper does take a lot more effort to ride, with the kid seat and burley behind I ride easily 10mph around our neighborhood. Put both on the Cypress and the same effort runs 15mphfor example. After getting the Cypress I don't think I would want to ride the rockhopper more than a few miles.
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Old 06-03-09, 07:11 AM   #18
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Inexpensive, simple, commuter bike thread

OP, you still looking?
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