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  1. #1
    Senior Member mr,grumpy's Avatar
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    Bike for my wife: get what she wants or what she thinks that she wants?

    We rented a bike on Holliday on the cape. My wife loved it. Rode around with a big smile on her face like a little kid! This is a big deal for her since she has a MTB and a road bike that leave her wanting for more. She hardly ever rides them finding them uncomfortable. Being the smart kind of guy that I am, I googled the bike while we were on the ride, only to find that they no longer make that model. Being the smart kind of guy I am, I offered to buy that very bike, cost irrelevant, from the shop at the end of the ride. They did not want to sell it.

    They DO sell a very similar copy though, only he shifter is different as far as I can tell. The bike in question is the jamis explorer

    However, in our bike-shop visiting yesterday we stopped into a specialized store and she rode a (2012) Ariel. She did not like the riding position as much as the explorer but thought that the bike rode nicer and shifted cleaner. It LOOKS to be a nicer bike, but vastly un-popular. I wonder why.

    So, shoul I encourage her to get the specialize or get the jamis. Price is a wash. Usage is dirt roads and easy trails, bike paths and bike lanes on suburban roads.
    "I'm built like a marine mammal. I love the cold! "-Cosmoline
    "MTBing is cheap compared to any motorsport I've done. It's very expensive compared to jogging."-ColinL
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  2. #2
    Goodbye Leeroy Jenkins tagaproject6's Avatar
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    No matter how smart you may think you are, it is your wife's choice that matters. Get her the bike that she wants and everything will be fine.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    TOML

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    Wilier Izoard XP (Campagnolo Record)
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  3. #3
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    If you get her the bike she wants, she only has herself to blame for any things she doesn't like. If you get her the one that you think is best, then she can blame you.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    It's not about the bike. It's about interpersonal relationships.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Notso_fastLane's Avatar
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    Get her the one she'll ride.

    A friend's wife bought an Ariel (back around '07, I think) and she loved it. You might mention that drop bars can be converted to flat, or other minor changes, depending on what it is your wife likes/dislikes about it.

  6. #6
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    Get a person what they want, full stop (unless they're a child). Once upon a time I wasted a lot of money getting a racer wannabe road bike, because you know, surely since I was riding mainly on the road surely that's what suits me. How wrong I was.

    EDIT: this the first image that comes up for Ariel bicycle


  7. #7
    Senior Member mr,grumpy's Avatar
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    UGH! Violet, she is SO picky! Honestly, any of the bikes that she looked at would suit her IF she wanted to ride a bike! IF she wanted to ride a bike she could swap bars or seats or stems on the MTB and be happy. I think that she wants to want to ride and I want to do any thing that encourages this. I just don't think that she is being realistic or reasonable in her demands or expectations. Sorry, it turned into a rant a little bit there.
    "I'm built like a marine mammal. I love the cold! "-Cosmoline
    "MTBing is cheap compared to any motorsport I've done. It's very expensive compared to jogging."-ColinL
    Rides:
    1999-ish Diamondback Sorrento (I'm not Dead Yet! I feal happy. I think I'll go for a walk!)
    1980ish Raleigh Marathon (Vintage Steel)
    2007 Gary Fisher Advance (giving the Sorrento a break)
    2006 Trek 820 (Captain Amazing)
    2010 Specialized Tricross (Back in Black)


    My little bike blog.

  8. #8
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    IF she wanted to ride a bike! IF she wanted to ride a bike
    Well, maybe this is the root problem. Maybe she has conflicting feelings, wanting to be with you on a ride, wanting to ride and not wanting to ride, fears of what might happen on the ride, money issues, being baffled by the array of choices she must make to get a bike that fits. There could be lots of other things if she's waffling about what she wants.

    Lance Armstrong said one thing very applicable in this situation. "It's not about the bike." So relax, be patient. It will all work itself out. On a scale of 1-10 in regards to problems, this is about a 1, maybe less.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  9. #9
    Senior Member tnvol123's Avatar
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    When I bought my wife a new bike a couple months ago I just told her to pick one. She got the one she wanted and still loves riding it.
    Last edited by tnvol123; 10-12-12 at 12:11 AM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    UGH! Violet, she is SO picky! Honestly, any of the bikes that she looked at would suit her IF she wanted to ride a bike! IF she wanted to ride a bike she could swap bars or seats or stems on the MTB and be happy. I think that she wants to want to ride and I want to do any thing that encourages this. I just don't think that she is being realistic or reasonable in her demands or expectations. Sorry, it turned into a rant a little bit there.
    Doesn't matter. Just don't make it be your fault.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    UGH! Violet, she is SO picky! Honestly, any of the bikes that she looked at would suit her IF she wanted to ride a bike! IF she wanted to ride a bike she could swap bars or seats or stems on the MTB and be happy. I think that she wants to want to ride and I want to do any thing that encourages this. I just don't think that she is being realistic or reasonable in her demands or expectations. Sorry, it turned into a rant a little bit there.
    Haha, maybe this is more a marriage discussion than a bicycle one Is it a big deal if she doesn't ride her bike with you? Couples need some time apart don't they?

  12. #12
    Senior Member mr,grumpy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Violet View Post
    Haha, maybe this is more a marriage discussion than a bicycle one Is it a big deal if she doesn't ride her bike with you? Couples need some time apart don't they?
    Haha. No, it's not a big deal. Honestly, she's too damn slow any way. Also, of course it's NOT about the bike. She tried out so darn many of them that are a hairs breath to each other in geometry and fit that any one of them would be "fine" but each has some rediculosly subtle detail that somehow makes it unacceptable. Frustrating but not the end of the world. I'm just tired of spending money on bikes that she doesn't ride.
    "I'm built like a marine mammal. I love the cold! "-Cosmoline
    "MTBing is cheap compared to any motorsport I've done. It's very expensive compared to jogging."-ColinL
    Rides:
    1999-ish Diamondback Sorrento (I'm not Dead Yet! I feal happy. I think I'll go for a walk!)
    1980ish Raleigh Marathon (Vintage Steel)
    2007 Gary Fisher Advance (giving the Sorrento a break)
    2006 Trek 820 (Captain Amazing)
    2010 Specialized Tricross (Back in Black)


    My little bike blog.

  13. #13
    Senior Member
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    Specialized Ariel's are popular hybrid bikes. Trust me, I'm a women who frequents a lot women forums and the Ariel and the Vita are very popular bikes. At the end of the day, let HER pick the bike - you'll have a better chance of her riding it if she picks it out.

  14. #14
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    Haha. No, it's not a big deal. Honestly, she's too damn slow any way. Also, of course it's NOT about the bike. She tried out so darn many of them that are a hairs breath to each other in geometry and fit that any one of them would be "fine" but each has some rediculosly subtle detail that somehow makes it unacceptable. Frustrating but not the end of the world. I'm just tired of spending money on bikes that she doesn't ride.
    So how many bikes does she have now? I sense a bigger problem here, but it's not visible. Of the bikes she has, how many did she buy without your guidance? It would help to have her side of the situation.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  15. #15
    Senior Member mr,grumpy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    So how many bikes does she have now? I sense a bigger problem here, but it's not visible. Of the bikes she has, how many did she buy without your guidance? It would help to have her side of the situation.
    She has three. A MTB that she has had for ever that is suddenly too small and un-comfortable and a MTB that is the next size up. She also has an old-school road bike that is comfortable and hard to shift (friction).
    Quote Originally Posted by Jyyanks View Post
    Specialized Ariel's are popular hybrid bikes.
    Cool. Good to know. I haven't seen a lot of reviews or even mention of them on-line. It helps me get over the"they are pushing a left-over lemon on us" feeling a little bit.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jyyanks View Post
    Trust me, I'm a women
    Um...err....
    "I'm built like a marine mammal. I love the cold! "-Cosmoline
    "MTBing is cheap compared to any motorsport I've done. It's very expensive compared to jogging."-ColinL
    Rides:
    1999-ish Diamondback Sorrento (I'm not Dead Yet! I feal happy. I think I'll go for a walk!)
    1980ish Raleigh Marathon (Vintage Steel)
    2007 Gary Fisher Advance (giving the Sorrento a break)
    2006 Trek 820 (Captain Amazing)
    2010 Specialized Tricross (Back in Black)


    My little bike blog.

  16. #16
    Mixte Power! Arrowana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    They DO sell a very similar copy though, only he shifter is different as far as I can tell. The bike in question is the jamis explorer
    Well there you go. When buying a bike, I look at how it rides, any components I don't like can be switched out. Not terribly expensive:
    https://www.google.com/shopping/prod...w=1920&bih=955

  17. #17
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    The Ariel is the WSD variant of the Crosstrail- which ain't no slouch. Specialized has been doing the Dual Sport thing with the Crosstrail/Ariel way before the marketing term 'Dual Sport' was first used...

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    We rented a bike on Holliday on the cape. My wife loved it. Rode around with a big smile on her face like a little kid! This is a big deal for her since she has a MTB and a road bike that leave her wanting for more. She hardly ever rides them finding them uncomfortable. ... So, should I encourage her to get the specialize or get the jamis. Price is a wash. Usage is dirt roads and easy trails, bike paths and bike lanes on suburban roads.
    Two sugestions:
    ...a lot of non-bicycle-enthusiast people REALLY don't like the clunky-shifting gears. Internal-gear hubs are much appreciated, and the 8-speed hubs offer plenty of range for casual riding. Problem is, you almost have to do that yourself these days. US bike shops rarely ever stock IGH bikes it seems. The Shimano 8-speed hub will cost about $220 alone.

    ...the RANS crank-forward bikes are WAY more comfortable than a normal upright bike, yet they are easy to ride and still look fairly normal. They are also WAY better than other comfort bikes like Townies, Day6 and so on. The RANS bikes have a better seat, and come in different frame sizes (unlike the Townie and the Day-6). They are expensive, but (as you are seeing) a bicycle so uncomfortable you won't ride it is not a bargain at any price.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowana View Post
    Well there you go. When buying a bike, I look at how it rides, any components I don't like can be switched out. Not terribly expensive:
    OP's problem is he still has to resolve the purchase with his wife. A lot of people can be really fussy about wanting their new bike to be completely factory standard with absolutely no aftermarket or replacement parts.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Homebrew01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr,grumpy View Post
    She has three. A MTB that she has had for ever that is suddenly too small and un-comfortable and a MTB that is the next size up. She also has an old-school road bike that is comfortable and hard to shift (friction).
    ....
    What's wrong with the MTB ? Can it be made more comfortable ?
    - Different saddle
    - adjust bars
    - different tires or lower pressure

    If she has 3 bikes, is getting her a 4th bike really a good idea ? Will she like it for a month then never ride it again ?
    Bikes: Old steel race bikes, old Cannondale race bikes, less old Cannondale race bike, crappy old mtn bike

  21. #21
    Nobody Special Rekless1's Avatar
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    Personally I think your wasting your time. I've been there and done that way too much.

    There was a time where my wife had more rides than I did. Every single one of them had a 'problem'. All but one bike she picked out and each and everyone got parts swapped,upgraded,downgraded to no end.

    Bottom line was she just didn't like to ride. She liked bikes, she liked the idea of riding, she liked having common ground with me.

    When it came right down to it, she only wanted to ride when she felt like it. Much like she felt like wearing a certain pair of shoes on a certain day.

    Curiously though, she often wore shoes that didn't fit or were uncomfortable but were expensive or in style. Not so much for the bike.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Notso_fastLane's Avatar
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    I'm gonna get my wife to try a tadpole trike this weekend. I think not having to worry about balance, and being able to relax while riding might get her actually interested in riding. Of course, like a lot of things, that might mean I spend a lot more $$$ on hers than mine, even though for me, it's my main commuter.

  23. #23
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Did you do data collection as to size and reach, etc. on that bike?

  24. #24
    Senior Member rumrunn6's Avatar
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    I love the cape. where did you rent? where did you ride?
    cycling is like baseball ~ it doesn't take much to make it interesting

  25. #25
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    FIRST, tell her you'll get whatever she wants, but she needs to get a bigger sampling of what's out there. If you're going for comfort, don't forget to have her try a 'bent or two. A Sun EZ-1 would be fairly inexpensive, too. But if she has her heart set on the Jamis, go for it.

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