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Old 09-07-11, 07:17 PM   #1
ChowChow
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Hello Noob

Hello everyone, newbie here. I just got back into riding a bike. The last time that I road one was when I was a teenager. I'm 32 years old now and just got back into biking, so that I can stay in shape. I currently own a Schwinn 1987 Sierra.

Next spring I want to get a new bike for riding mostly on hard bike paths. My budget is around $250-$350. I am currently looking at mostly comfort bikes like the 2011 Schwinn Voyageur 21, Forge M Street, and Windsor Dover 3. Out of these three. Which one is best?

Plus, any other suggestions are welcome.

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Old 09-07-11, 08:17 PM   #2
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It looks like the Forge is sold at Target, that would knock it out of contention there for me. BikesDirect is pretty good, but you have to make sure it fits, and that you can put it together.

Keep in mind, comfort bikes aren't good for distance, we sold ours after about 6 months.
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Old 09-07-11, 08:52 PM   #3
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I find that "comfort" bikes don't make for much comfort. The upright position that they offer makes any bump you hit jolt up from your butt to up your spine like a jackhammer. Better to look for a bike that allows you to share the burdens of bumps between your back and shoulders.

Sounds like a roadbike may be too aggressive of body positioning got your tastes. My suggestion is a little out of your price range but a sturdier bike with a slightly more inclined position that will allow you to use your shoulders as shock obsorbers, the Motobecane Cafe Sprint would be my choice if I was to get a flatbar bike. Looks good for street and can take you out gentle dirt paths if you want also. My 2 cents.
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Old 09-07-11, 10:21 PM   #4
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Hi, .. hang out around Bike shops , lots to learn by seeing things..
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Old 09-08-11, 06:00 AM   #5
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Keep in mind, comfort bikes aren't good for distance, we sold ours after about 6 months.
That's a personal preference, I think. I rode my 120 miles 2 weekends ago, and 106 last weekend. I regularly take it on 60+ mile rides. Then again, it's possible you don't consider those to be long rides. Yea, the stock saddle can get a little uncomfortable at those distances, but I've decided it might be the bike and not the saddle, as I've tried 10 different ones and keep going back to the original.

Another bike might be better, but I don't feel like my bike has limited me. Might I have done better on a road bike? Sure, but that hasn't stopped me. I tried a Windsor Tourist a few years back but it turned out to be too big for me and wasn't comfortable.

Although I've discovered any weight on my hands causes numbness in short order, so next year I'm getting a tadpole recumbent for distances.

ChowChow: My bike is a Trek 7000 and I highly recommend it if you can pay a little more than your budget.
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Old 09-08-11, 06:39 AM   #6
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No, those are pretty good distances. But I think we have different definitions of Comfort bike. I call the Trek 7000 a hybrid, to me a "comfort" bike would be something along the lines of a Trek Classic, Calypso or Pure.
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Old 09-08-11, 10:51 AM   #7
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No, those are pretty good distances. But I think we have different definitions of Comfort bike. I call the Trek 7000 a hybrid, to me a "comfort" bike would be something along the lines of a Trek Classic, Calypso or Pure.
Well, I guess I don't have much experience with those, so I can't really comment. Although I know the geometry on the Trek 7.x series is enough to cause me discomfort. I've been starting to figure out I'm a recumbent kind of guy, I think.
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Old 09-08-11, 07:10 PM   #8
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It looks like the Forge is sold at Target, that would knock it out of contention there for me. BikesDirect is pretty good, but you have to make sure it fits, and that you can put it together.

Keep in mind, comfort bikes aren't good for distance, we sold ours after about 6 months.
What bikes do you have now and what are they use for?
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Old 09-08-11, 07:13 PM   #9
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I find that "comfort" bikes don't make for much comfort. The upright position that they offer makes any bump you hit jolt up from your butt to up your spine like a jackhammer. Better to look for a bike that allows you to share the burdens of bumps between your back and shoulders.

Sounds like a roadbike may be too aggressive of body positioning got your tastes. My suggestion is a little out of your price range but a sturdier bike with a slightly more inclined position that will allow you to use your shoulders as shock obsorbers, the Motobecane Cafe Sprint would be my choice if I was to get a flatbar bike. Looks good for street and can take you out gentle dirt paths if you want also. My 2 cents.
Ernest
That's a sweet bike, but it's like twice my budget. I wish I can get that bike, but then again the wife might kill me if I do.
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Old 09-08-11, 07:14 PM   #10
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Hi, .. hang out around Bike shops , lots to learn by seeing things..
Yeah, maybe I should look around until spring comes.
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Old 09-08-11, 07:17 PM   #11
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That's a personal preference, I think. I rode my 120 miles 2 weekends ago, and 106 last weekend. I regularly take it on 60+ mile rides. Then again, it's possible you don't consider those to be long rides. Yea, the stock saddle can get a little uncomfortable at those distances, but I've decided it might be the bike and not the saddle, as I've tried 10 different ones and keep going back to the original.

Another bike might be better, but I don't feel like my bike has limited me. Might I have done better on a road bike? Sure, but that hasn't stopped me. I tried a Windsor Tourist a few years back but it turned out to be too big for me and wasn't comfortable.

Although I've discovered any weight on my hands causes numbness in short order, so next year I'm getting a tadpole recumbent for distances.

ChowChow: My bike is a Trek 7000 and I highly recommend it if you can pay a little more than your budget.
Chandltp I will keep the Trek 7000 in mind.
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Old 09-09-11, 10:10 AM   #12
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Chandltp I will keep the Trek 7000 in mind.
I must admit my primary selection criteria was that it was the least expensive bike at the bike shop. But it has served me well. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 7500 miles on it right now in primarily sandy conditions, and it has held up very well.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:45 PM   #13
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I must admit my primary selection criteria was that it was the least expensive bike at the bike shop. But it has served me well. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 7500 miles on it right now in primarily sandy conditions, and it has held up very well.
Found one for a cheaper price. http://villagecycle.com/product/11-t...00-72941-1.htm
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Old 09-10-11, 03:34 AM   #14
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Yea, I was just going off of MSRP. I think I paid right around $350 from my LBS.
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Old 09-10-11, 10:42 PM   #15
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With your budget I would read and learn what a good fit is and then get a used bike.
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Old 09-10-11, 11:01 PM   #16
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Slightly off topic, but please forgive me. The fact that ChowChow is using the wrong "noob" is gonna kill me if I don't say something. In gaming terms, you would be a "newb", short for newbie. A n00b is generally defined as someone that is constantly annoying and/or rude.
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Old 09-11-11, 05:42 AM   #17
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With your budget I would read and learn what a good fit is and then get a used bike.
I hear that advice often and I disagree. I think someone just getting serious with cycling needs the support of a LBS and a new bike that if something goes wrong (under warranty), it doesn't cost anything to get fixed and isn't a deterrent to continuing cycling.

For a 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 50th bike, used makes sense as long as that person wants to deal with the potential issues in buying a used bike.
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Old 09-11-11, 02:55 PM   #18
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Hey man I just got a Jamis commuter 1 at my LBS. It would fit your budget, and it's a great bike. It has a good upright position that is great for your first bike. I've been putting 40 miles a week on it and have had no problems. You should check them out. You might can get the 2011 models for a discount.
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Old 09-11-11, 04:40 PM   #19
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I don't think it matters much what your first bike is. If you enjoy riding you'll want a different one wiithin a few months, and you'll know enough by them to make a good choice in a new or used bike. OTOH, if you don't enjoy cycling, you''ll put the bike in the garage and never look at it again.

My first bike was a very used Walmart MTB. I paid $40 for it, and that was more than it was worth. But I had fun on it, and within a short time I was ready to buy a better bike--and I knew exactly what I wanted.

Also, if you're a "noob" or a "newb," stick with bikeforums.net, and ask as many questions as you want. It's one of the best resources that I know of.
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Old 09-12-11, 04:47 PM   #20
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With your budget I would read and learn what a good fit is and then get a used bike.
I already have a used bike. That is why I'm looking for a new bike for next spring.
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Old 09-12-11, 04:49 PM   #21
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Slightly off topic, but please forgive me. The fact that ChowChow is using the wrong "noob" is gonna kill me if I don't say something. In gaming terms, you would be a "newb", short for newbie. A n00b is generally defined as someone that is constantly annoying and/or rude.
Sorry about the incorrect wording. Newbie it is.
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Old 09-12-11, 04:52 PM   #22
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Hey man I just got a Jamis commuter 1 at my LBS. It would fit your budget, and it's a great bike. It has a good upright position that is great for your first bike. I've been putting 40 miles a week on it and have had no problems. You should check them out. You might can get the 2011 models for a discount.
Where online do they sell Jamis bikes?
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Old 09-12-11, 04:56 PM   #23
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After looking online and finding what I want in a bike. As of now, my 1st choice would be a Motobecane Cafe Latte. 2nd Trek 7.1 FX and 3rd would be a Trek 7000. All under $400. With first choice being the most expensive and third choice being the least expensive.

The only things that I didn't like about the two Trek bikes is that. Both of them are 21 speed and I wanted at least 24 speed. Plus, they don't have a 19 inch frame. Which is perfect for me. As I am 5ft10. A 20 inch might work, but just might be slightly taller than I wanted and a 17.5 is a bit smaller, but will still work.


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