Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-29-12, 07:04 PM   #1
avuton
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Bikes:
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ready to begin biking (again)

Much in the same vein of I neeed a bike!! post, I'm looking very similarly, but I'm a researcher so would like to understand a few things.

There is an overwhelming number of posts in these forums. Apologize if any of this is in a FAQ or another post around here, I'm more than willing to spend the time reading, please feel free to point me in a direction.

First a little background: I used to bike about 15 years ago, haven't since as I'm a bit of a cheapwad.

I'm ready to put my money down if there is a good reason (quality, extended lifetime, maintainability). So, here is the point. I'm sure there is a great reason to pay $2000+ for a bike if for competition, but I'm not yet to the point that I understand the general bike rider spending $400 for a bike . I do get the concept of you get what you pay for, so I'm sure there is a high level of quality to the parts, better, lighter materials, less friction, etc.. After doing a little research, I don't see any advantage other than the brand name vs. non-brand name. They're all made in China (all that I've seen).

Are higher cost bikes easier to maintain? Are parts interoperable? Do they, generally, last longer? As a mechanic, is it possible / would it be bad for me to assemble my bike piece by piece as I do the research to figure out what's best for me? I would like to get something I can keep and maintain indefinitely; that is a huge consideration for me. Is there a good conglomeration of research materials about what make modern bikes good, maybe a primer?

Finally, the finer points of my bike, I plan on doing road biking, and I don't exactly intend to be easy on it (maybe off road <10% of the time I'm biking, hit curbs hard with back wheel, etc..). I'm used to taking whatever I could get, biking wise, but seems like there are more options now (ie: thin, medium and thick wheels); Is there something I should be specifically looking for, specifically, for this bike?

Appreciate all advice in advance.

Last edited by avuton; 04-29-12 at 07:11 PM. Reason: wheels, not tires
avuton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-12, 07:56 PM   #2
Mondo734
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Denver, CO
Bikes: 2012 Specialized Crux, Schwinn Mesa
Posts: 583
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Having recently went throught the buying process for the first time here are somethings I learned.
1. Know what kind of riding you are going to be doing
2. If your not sure if cycling is for you, buy used first if you stick with it then buy new(er) more $$$
3. Test ride all the bikes you can, every bike handles different and gives a different rides
4. Ask every question you have to multiple LBS employees (some are more knowledgeable than others)
5. A cheaper bike wont ride as nice a more expensive bike, you may not believe me now but once you test a few you will
6. A bike with more expensive components (drive train) does tend to last longer and be less maintenance
7. As far as components go Shimano Tiagra, 105, ultegra, and dura ace are all great, and anything from SRAM is as well
8. You can spend less on the previous years model (2011 models) over buying a 2012 model bike

The most important thing of all is to buy from a store you find knowledgeable and friendly. Pay attention to their maintenance plans, some shops free tune-ups for life others only one or for one year. Most new bikes that are from big name brands (Specialized, Trek, Cannondale and others) have a lifetime frame warranty. Have fun shopping and I hope this was helpful.
Mondo734 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-12, 08:03 PM   #3
mawtangent
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 273
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have one of the entry-level Dawes road bikes that I got for under $200 a few years ago (now you can get them new for around $300 shipped from bikesdirect.com or from some ebay sellers. Mine has a 59 cm frame and weighs around 29 lbs, it has 7 gears on the back and 2 on the front (not super-easy gears for climbing), it has "retro" stem shifters. Many cyclists want a lighter bike with brifters. I've tried (and own) lighter bikes with brifters and still find the Dawes Lighting Sport very adequate for my riding (I just rode 12 miles this evening on it). So my opinion is that you can get decently started for $300-$400 (you could even get a helmet and bike shorts in that budget).

You might be able to find a big-name used bike (that was like $1000 5 or 10 years ago) for that kind of money (I don't find those bikes for sale where I live).

You seem like a very serious-minded person who always wants to make the perfect decision. I say just find a road bike to ride and (no matter what bike you start with) you will likely (if you get into this biking activity a lot) want another bike. Why? Because it just takes time to really figure out what you like and what you want to "try-out" in the future.
mawtangent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-12, 08:20 PM   #4
a1penguin
Senior Member
 
a1penguin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Silicon Valley, CA
Bikes:
Posts: 2,754
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
If you are going to do off roading and hit curbs hard, you probably don't want the classic road bike. Hybrid or cyclocross will accept wider tires and will be more what you are looking for. Do you know if you want a flat bar bike or drop bars? CX bikes have drop bars; they also have higher cost. You might be able to find a decent CX bike used.

I think the major brand names are made in Taiwan and the cheap frames are made in China. The components (SRAM or Shimano) are probably no longer made in Japan. Unless you want to drop serious coin or purchase older used bike, it will not be made in USA. Mondo's summary is spot on. One thing to empasize, though, is that you should avoid purchasing a bike from an Xmart. They are crap and most likely assembled by someone who can barely use an adjustable wrench.

I also don't recommend buying a bike online. While you can save some money, you don't get to test ride it and if the sizing is wrong, there will be additional shipping charges and $$ spent at the LBS.

I'm like you and like to understand what I am buying. To that, I say spend more time reading the forums and you'll learn.
a1penguin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:40 AM.