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Old 05-03-10, 08:29 PM   #1
Antoeats
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17 year old in need of help choosing first road bike!

Hi everyone, I'm Anto Park(pronounced Ann-toe Park), I'm a 17 year old, korean, who lives in Southern California. I've always enjoyed the occasional long bike ride just to clear out your mind and for a little exercise. :] The only problem is that my parents seemed to have sold my old bike, which was a subpar huffy bike I got back in my elementary school days. It also seems that my school is going to have a cycling team next year, and it seems like an amazing thing to do my senior year. I'm about 5'7, 125 pounds, and I'm looking for a nice bike, preferably used and as for cost, somewhere between 200 to 300 dollars! If any of you guys have any recommendations for my build or anything of that sort, please leave your suggestions below.

Much thanks,
Anto Park

P.S. I look forward to asking for more help in the future!
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Old 05-03-10, 08:35 PM   #2
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I would check on craigslist for a nice used bike. You can find something in your range there, better than any new bike you will get for the same price.
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Old 05-03-10, 08:36 PM   #3
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Tell me exactly what type of riding and any other conerns and I would be happy to send you links for bikes that my do the trick. I am in SoCal too.
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Old 05-03-10, 08:40 PM   #4
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Basically anywhere up to 100 miles max for the next few years and then when I'm older and get a little bigger, I'll buy a new bike. But for now, just training for centuries and then centuries. Super long cruises for post-finals/exams to relieve that stress, basically! How SoCal are you? Orange? I tried checking craigslist, but I have no idea where I should start!
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Old 05-04-10, 10:43 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Antoeats View Post
Basically anywhere up to 100 miles max for the next few years and then when I'm older and get a little bigger, I'll buy a new bike. But for now, just training for centuries and then centuries. Super long cruises for post-finals/exams to relieve that stress, basically! How SoCal are you? Orange? I tried checking craigslist, but I have no idea where I should start!
In your price range, I would not even consider a used bike with carbon fiber, because there's a good likelihood that it would have hidden damage (or else why would they be selling it so cheap). I did a search in the Orange county Craigslist "Bikes" for "Reynolds" because Reynolds steel was typically used in higher-end bikes over the last century. Chances are that in your price range, the bikes that you will find are older bikes but for the most part they had decent components that are fairly likely to still work well. Racers used downtube friction shifters on 5, 6, or 7 speed freewheels for many years, so there is no reason you can't too! Not everything that is new-fangled is necessarily better. Reynolds 531 was top of the line for many years but was eventually succeeded by 653 and 853. But you probably won't find bikes in your price range that have 653 or 853.

I found:
http://orangecounty.craigslist.org/bik/1721189923.html (very nice bike at a very nice price, my wife has one of these and rides it as her daily commuter)
http://orangecounty.craigslist.org/bik/1720845908.html (not the best Reynolds steel but still good. The Campy Rally derailleur might be worth half the price of the bike on EBay)
http://orangecounty.craigslist.org/bik/1685910577.html (older listing so no photos; could be alright)

There are a lot more "hits" on "Reynolds" if you search the LA Craigslist.

You can read about older Treks at www.vintagetreks.com. They seem to be a better value than the older Raleighs, on the whole. Lots of info about older Raleighs is at http://sheldonbrown.com/retroraleighs/

If you find a vintage French bike (e.g. Gitane or Peugot) you should know that the threading on the headset and bottom bracket is "French" (go figure) so if you ever need parts for it, you'll have more difficulty locating them. However, www.veloorange.com has French-threaded headsets and bottom brackets available.

You could also search on Columbus, True Temper, Tange, and Ishiwata, all of which made (make) good steel. But I don't know the "model numbers" that would tell you which is the better steel from them. But you can look this stuff up on
http://www.desperadocycles.com/The_L...per_Tubing.htm

Nick
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Old 05-05-10, 11:49 AM   #6
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Do you know what size you need?
More important than anything is size to start with. If you found a $10.000 bike for $100.00 and it was the wrong size, it would not be good for you. Start at the beginning with the right size bike and you will be more injury free and more comfortable, hence you will ride more and farther.
Good luck and happy ridding.
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Old 05-06-10, 11:05 AM   #7
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Some of the Specialized Allez bikes come with eyelets for rack and fenders (but not much fender clearance). Racks are useful if you want to use your bike for commuting and light touring. Whatever you buy right now will probably be relegated to training/commuting duty in a couple of years so its useful feature to have and doesn't detract from its raceability.
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Old 05-07-10, 06:45 AM   #8
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How can I find out the size?
I'm about 5'7" and 125 pounds, if that helps. D:
and still growing may I add.
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Old 05-07-10, 08:59 AM   #9
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Surf the web, so you have an idea of what's out there. I think thebulls suggestion to stay with steel is good. It will help you focus. And steel frames are rugged, and likely to last you a lifetime as your utility bike after you get a better one as well.

Go to your local bike store. Do a little shopping there. Look at the new bikes that you would like to buy a used one of

They can help you know your size, and maybe even let you test ride one. Don't let yourself get tempted by the real high end bikes. They might even have a used one that's right for you.

After you've shopped there, and are ready to hunt on Craigslist, remember the bike store that helped you. When you need tires etc, go back to them.

Also, ask at your school, find out who will be the cycling coach, talk to them and see what they have to say.
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Old 05-10-10, 02:27 AM   #10
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I'm about your size and I feel comfortable on a 52-54cm depending on the frame, so I would start there.
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Old 05-11-10, 09:17 AM   #11
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I tried checking craigslist, but I have no idea where I should start!
do you know what size of bicycle fits you? I'm just guessing a road bike with approx 21" (52-54cm) seat tube should fit. The bike I had from 13-16yrs old was a 23" 38lb Schwinn 5spd Collegiate that I rode all over LA. After that lowest cost Nishiki with aluminum rims and toe clips, this was in 1972. You can find a better bike than your old Huffy. All you need to do is identify the size of bike you need, line up a list of possible sources and frequent them every couple of days. Craigslist, Goodwill and a small shop that is welcoming to your questions.
Just make sure your relationship with the local bike shop is a two way one. If you spend time asking them for information you have to buy something. Be respectful of their time and honest with what you're looking for, "I only have $200, I'd like to buy the X you have on sale but I can't do it, I'm looking for a basic 52cm road bike with (fill in the blanks, if you want eyelets for racks, if you want a potential racing bike, drop bars, straight bars, able to take 32mm tires, whatever). Over a few months you might get a deal tossed your way from one of the mechanics from his own personal stash or they might have an abandoned bike.
So put together a list of things you have to have regardless of where you get the bike and use them for getting into the shops consideration for future deals every time you come in and ask a question. A floor pump, spare tire/tool seat bag, frame pump, patch kit, etc.
Also check out estate sales on craigs list and Freecycle.org . I unloaded a lot of things through Freecycle , it's a good way to shortcut Goodwill and get a free bike. Garage sales/estate sales will have piles of stuff and occasionally a bike is thrown in the mix and is usually sold for less than when sold individually.
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