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  1. #1
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    First proper bike. What would work for me? Hybrid? Hardtail mountain bike?

    Hello,



    I have finished college and have a decent job and have decided to buy a new bike with a budget around $1000.



    I got back into cycling maybe 4 years ago and forgot how much I enjoyed it. I have a generic canadian tire $200 mountain bike. I find it rather difficult to ride it in the city. It's like I have to fight it to keep moving (the wheels are slightly out of alignment so they very lightly rub against the brakes). I've tried to tune it but every movement I make it gets worse so it is as good as it can be.



    I do 80% concrete/city riding but I would also like the ability to ride on light trails off-road when the need arises. I'm a praire boy so no mountains around here. I should also say that this will be a part of a regular exercise routine for weight loss as well. I started at 223 lbs a month or two ago and am now nearing 215, but I don't think my weight on any of these bikes will be an issue. It was for big box store bikes however (when I was heavier ~250).



    I have a couple friends who ride nice bikes and I have been talking with them to get suggestions. One of them owns a Kona and he has been very happy with it. Sorry, I don't know the model. Another option was the Specialized Hardrock.



    Some things I've been told are:



    Anything Dura or deore (don't know which one) or above for shifters

    Hardtail is best for city so I don't lose efficiency

    Lock-out suspension so I can get all the efficiency out of the bike



    I tooks notes as he talked but I don't have my phone at work



    Another suggested brand was giant.



    It is quite a big market I've realized and I'm sure most people have their own suggestions that are all equally valid (different brands or models).



    So, to summarize. I want the bike to be nice and smooth on the city streets but also be able to handle light trail riding at the cabin or in a national park. Perhaps it has more to do with the tires? What should I look for in a bike? What are some of the features that are 'must haves' at this price range ($1000)?



    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    How much can U go above $1000?

    IMO, a cyclocross bike best suits ur cycling habits. But U can't find any less than $1000 unless its online.

    www.nashbar.com
    www.bikesdirect.com

    Also a rigid fork mountain bike might be alright 2

    http://surlybikes.com/bikes
    Last edited by Cfiber; 04-25-13 at 10:21 AM.

  3. #3
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Go to a local bike shop (LBS) and try several different bikes. Buy whatever you think you'll enjoy more.

    $1000 is plenty (you can spend considerably less and still get a very nice bike). Don't get too hung up on components (yet - that comes for the second bike). Getting a bike that fits is more important. (And nobody sane gets dura-ace components on their first bike unless they're loaded).

    If you want a road-bike like bike, consider cyclocross bike. Let's you put on wider tires so you can more easily go on gravel trails, etc. If you want a more upright position, a hybrid may be the ticket.

    Knobby tires on roads will really slow you down. Likewise, suspension generally isn't necessary (and will cause you to waste energy) unless you are really going off-road. If you are really going to go properly off-road, get a mountain bike (too).

    Good luck and enjoy!
    Charles
    Last edited by cplager; 04-25-13 at 09:21 AM.
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  4. #4
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    +1, shop live and in person. bike brands compete! the $900 bike will be worth that across brands..

    how many bikes are Stolen a week where you live?

  5. #5
    Senior Member Arabesque's Avatar
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    While cyclocross bikes are efficient for both road and dirt, they are more than your stated budget. Your best bet would be a 29 wheeled mountain bike with lockable front suspension e.g. Kona or Specialized Rockhopper or a 700c Sport bike like the Giant.

    The 29er mountain will come with dirt specific tires but can accommodate 700c tires which are the choice of road bikers. If you go with the 29 mountain bikes, while in the shop ask if they can switch the tires into town and country tires. This can be used for both pavement and dirt roads but as in all compromises, wont be the best application for either one.

    Here are links to bikes that should be in your budget. These are stated SRP and a 10% discount is *de rigueur* on most bike shops on bicycles.

    I picked the bikes from the manufacturers you mentioned. Mountain bikes are built robust reason why I suggested them but the Giant sport may work as well.

    http://www.konaworld.com/bike.cfm?content=kahuna#1

    http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bik...ercomp29#specs

    http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...specifications

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arabesque View Post
    While cyclocross bikes are efficient for both road and dirt, they are more than your stated budget....
    No.

    Here's just one:

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...m_cross_xi.htm

    There are lots more.

    IMO avoid a hybrid - you wind up with a bike that sucks at everything other than noddling around for short distances at 9 mph. I've seen way too many people who start with a hybrid wind up ditching it as soon as they start riding any bit seriously.

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    Thanks. This will give me a few things to look over and think about before I go to the local store tomorrow to see the bikes in person and try them out myself. Oh, my neighbourhood is alright. It would be kept in a locked shed inside a fenced yard. Out on the town though is a different story. I have a simple coiled stretchy lock with a key. I usually wrap it through the frame and both tires, is that enough? I guess I should get in the habit of taking my seat if it has quick release?

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    Quote Originally Posted by festa_freak View Post
    Thanks. This will give me a few things to look over and think about before I go to the local store tomorrow to see the bikes in person and try them out myself. Oh, my neighbourhood is alright. It would be kept in a locked shed inside a fenced yard. Out on the town though is a different story. I have a simple coiled stretchy lock with a key. I usually wrap it through the frame and both tires, is that enough? I guess I should get in the habit of taking my seat if it has quick release?
    Sorry to inform u about this, but ur current lock is defenselessly weak. Both cable and coil locks r what bicycle thieves cut their teeth on. A simple bolt cutter can easily dispose of them in less than 5 seconds.

  9. #9
    imi
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    Quote Originally Posted by festa_freak View Post
    I guess I should get in the habit of taking my seat if it has quick release?
    Replace the QR with a bolt and nut.
    If you buy the bike from a LBS they'll be able to swap it out for sure.

  10. #10
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    imho - visit your local bike store(s), look at some preowned cyclocross or road bikes. Ride a few different models and types, get what you feel comfortable on. This time of year many bike shops have a "bike swap or sales" day, where customers bring bikes for sale, check these out. $400-500 can get a very nice bike at many of these sales. Then ride this bike for a year, as your body evolves with your riding interests, soon you will have a better idea of what you really need or want- next year make a bigger investment. Start by selling your bike at LBS sales event, many will credit most of the proceeds to your then new bike.
    ride long & prosper

  11. #11
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by martianone View Post
    imho - visit your local bike store(s), look at some preowned cyclocross or road bikes. Ride a few different models and types, get what you feel comfortable on. This time of year many bike shops have a "bike swap or sales" day, where customers bring bikes for sale, check these out. $400-500 can get a very nice bike at many of these sales. Then ride this bike for a year, as your body evolves with your riding interests, soon you will have a better idea of what you really need or want- next year make a bigger investment. Start by selling your bike at LBS sales event, many will credit most of the proceeds to your then new bike.
    Some pretty solid advice.
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  12. #12
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by festa_freak View Post
    I have a couple friends who ride nice bikes and I have been talking with them to get suggestions. One of them owns a Kona and he has been very happy with it. Sorry, I don't know the model. Another option was the Specialized Hardrock.
    That narrows the field. If you have friends that you want to ride with, get a bike that's similar to theirs.

  13. #13
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    I went to the LBS on friday and talked to a worker there and tried three bikes. There wasn't much in my price range. It was either too high or too low.


    The three I tried were a Norco mountain bike for $1100 but that felt like my bike at home, although much better but still felt the tires were holding me back.
    I tried the Giant roam XR2 (which someone actually linked in this thread) and it actually felt great. It was very fast and the tires let me glide over pavement and I could see they would allow me to do some light trails. Giant price was $999
    The last bike I tried was a $850 cyclocross bike which didn't have any suspension but had disc brakes and decent shifters. I stated to the girl that I may not like the position the cyclocross puts me in when riding. Well, I tried it and it was alright after riding for 5 minutes but I just can't see myself riding off-road with it. I could really put some power into the pedal strokes due to the position as well. It just feels too weird still. I loved the way the shifters were integrated into the brakes though, that was pretty neat.


    So far, a hybrid has won my heart. I'm still going to go to some other shops and try out more bikes.


    Thanks again for all the input about anti-theft too. I figured my bike lock wasn't enough. What is a good option to secure a bike?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
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    for locking your good bike

    take the front wheel off and sit it next to the rear wheel
    and lock it all to a solid object like a bike rack or parking meter
    use a good U lock to secure together all at once the front wheel rear wheel and frame


    if your seat is quick release then replace it with a bolt
    after you have the seat height adjusted to your satisfaction
    use a grinder or a drill to remove the flats from the head of the bolt so it can not be easily removed

    btw
    hybrids kick ass
    the only limiting factor on where or how far you can ride
    is the tires
    the only drawback is that upright bars are often not as good for longer distances because there is only one hand position

  15. #15
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    the only limiting factor on where or how far you can ride
    is
    time in the saddle, tuning the pedals.
    the only drawback is that upright bars are often not as good for longer distances because there is only one hand position
    unless you change to anatomic grips, like Ergon's with integrated bar ends..

    Or, as I am preferring Figure 8 bend trekking bars.. all the controls transfer directly,
    and there are a lot of different ways to hold on..

  16. #16
    GT4
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    With $1000, get an OK road bike or get a really nice track bike.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
    for locking your good bike

    take the front wheel off and sit it next to the rear wheel
    and lock it all to a solid object like a bike rack or parking meter
    use a good U lock to secure together all at once the front wheel rear wheel and frame


    if your seat is quick release then replace it with a bolt
    after you have the seat height adjusted to your satisfaction
    use a grinder or a drill to remove the flats from the head of the bolt so it can not be easily removed

    btw
    hybrids kick ass
    the only limiting factor on where or how far you can ride
    is the tires
    the only drawback is that upright bars are often not as good for longer distances because there is only one hand position
    +1

    Great advice!

    You can get a much better hybrid for less than $1000, than you can a road bike.

    www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1126671_-1_400316__400316
    Last edited by Cfiber; 05-01-13 at 08:43 AM.

  18. #18
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    The middle of last week I heard about a local bike shop closing it's doors again (not the first time). I held out buying a bike because they are in receivership and a sale is going on right now to get rid of stock. I have booked the day off tomorrow and will head into town to check out what they have. There will be no warranty from the store and I don't know if the manufacturer would honor any problems before the manufacturer warranty ran out.

    I've been scouring the web for ideas on bikes in my price range. One I came accross was the Trek Crossrip. It looks like it has brakes on the drop handlebars AND the straight handlebars. That would be an awesome thing as I didn't see any cyclocross bikes with both sets of brakes on any bike under 1300 where I looked before (above my price limit). Have you heard any good or bad about the crossrip bike? It has no suspension that I see but it does have disc brakes!

    Anyways, I just wanted to update you and thank you for your help.


  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arabesque View Post
    While cyclocross bikes are efficient for both road and dirt, they are more than your stated budget.

    ...

    http://www.konaworld.com/bike.cfm?content=kahuna#1
    Kona Jake is about the same price as that 29er.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by festa_freak View Post


    Some things I've been told are:



    Anything Dura or deore (don't know which one) or above for shifters

    Hardtail is best for city so I don't lose efficiency

    Lock-out suspension so I can get all the efficiency out of the bike


    Dura Ace is racing racing level components, so you will not get a bike with Dura Ace for $1000. Same goes for XTR on mountain bike. A Dura Ace rear deralleur is around $250 for cable pull and around $800 for electronic. Compare to Deore level rear derailleur which is closer to $50 and no electric version yet.

    Deore is likely what you mean because that's the workhorse level of mountain components for Shimano. The equivalent on the road side is Tiagra. Shimano components that start with A, i.e. Altus, Acera, Alivio, and Tourney are more casual or recreational level stuff.

  21. #21
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    Yeah I meant deore :S

    Heading out in 15 min to go to the shop! Wish me luck!

  22. #22
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    Not sure if there is any shifter line above the dura ace, unless you go electronic. Dura-Ace bikes usually are not in the 1k territory.

    My pick:

    http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...1/11498/55820/

    I would have suggested the defy 2 but the color this year is butt ugly.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by CenturionIM View Post

    My pick:

    http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...1/11498/55820/

    I would have suggested the defy 2 but the color this year is butt ugly.
    + 1/2

    Hey! I think the Giant Defy 2 is an excellent choice and I just love the color!


    However, I must admit, it doesn't look nearly as good over the NET as it does in person.

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