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  1. #1
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    Bike Type Advice

    Hey guys, I'm new to biking and I could use some advice on what kind of bike to get.

    First, a little background. I've have been excersizing a lot recently, running every day, hardcore dieting, etc. and I'm ready to take the next step. My roomate has started biking to and from work and he's been seeing great results.

    I'd like to follow his example and start biking to get to and from work. I'm planning on riding about 14 miles (both ways) a day. In addition to city riding, I'd like the ability to take the bike down some easy trails we have around the area. Nothing major, just some pretty level dirt gravel and grass.

    What type of bike should I be looking into getting? My friend recommended a crosstrail bike, but that seems to be more of a bike brand rather than a general type of bike. He had described it as having forks at both wheels that are able to fully lock, upright seat, and curled handlebars. I'm sure you guys can narrow down what type of bike that actually is.

    And lastly, any suggestions on some good bike review websites? A lot of these review sites seem to also sell bikes they happen to review, so I worry about the validity of their reviews.

    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    Last edited by 10 Wheels; 08-09-13 at 12:09 PM.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    How much do you weigh? Is that 14 miles total (7 each way) or 28 miles total?

    No matter. IMO, you should get either a road bike or a cross bike. A cross bike looks like a road bike except it has somewhat different brakes and a bit wider frame spacing so it can take wider tires. Both have drop bars and no suspension. For trails and grass, the wider tires of a cross bike help soften the ride and are less prone to sinking into soft surfaces.

  4. #4
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    The route I'm going to be taking will be 7 miles one way, 14 miles both ways. And I weigh a lot. I'm probably not going to be able to use the bike for a commute for a few weeks, I'm cool with that.

    When you say cross bike, I'm guessing I should be looking at cyclocross bikes?

    EDIT: And yeah I'm probably going to be the guy being recorded in that first video.

  5. #5
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    Just as an update, I've done some research and found a few that I think would do pretty well. Any complaints/ suggestions on these?

    Trek 1.2 / 1.4
    Raleigh Tripper
    Specialized Allez Sport Compact
    Surly Cross-Check

    These all seem to be able to handle both road and trail.

  6. #6
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    At modest price points Cross and Hybrid differ largely in handle bar type ... straight/MTB or Road/ Drop type.

    In European markets they even call Hybrids, Cross bikes ..




    you got dealers for all 4 of those to test ride, in person?

  7. #7
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Go for a test ride on all four and buy the one that fits best.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  8. #8
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    Yep, I have dealers for all of these in town that I can test ride. To be honest though, I've not ridden a bike in so long I'm not sure if I want to embarrass myself.

    As far as handlebars go, I'm going to assume I'll want to get the rounded handles since I'll be riding this more as a commuter than a trail bike.

  9. #9
    Stupendous Man wangta01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DroppedOnCapric View Post
    Yep, I have dealers for all of these in town that I can test ride. To be honest though, I've not ridden a bike in so long I'm not sure if I want to embarrass myself.

    As far as handlebars go, I'm going to assume I'll want to get the rounded handles since I'll be riding this more as a commuter than a trail bike.
    Man, you never forget. Isn't there a saying "it's like riding a bike - you never forget". Or soemthing like that? I'm sure you'll do fine - just don't bomb down the road and try and make quick turns. Oh and wear a helmet just in case!
    --
    "I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying."
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  10. #10
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    For something like that, I think I'd go with something like this: http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/town/fitness/fx

    Should fill the need very nicely.
    Demented internet tail wagging imbicile.

  11. #11
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    Ahh, while I was checking out a couple bikes at my local bike shop I was shown the Trek FX series and they did look pretty nice. They were cheaper than the Surly Cross-Check, so I'm wondering how they compare? Is the Surly a superior bike?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by DroppedOnCapric View Post
    Ahh, while I was checking out a couple bikes at my local bike shop I was shown the Trek FX series and they did look pretty nice. They were cheaper than the Surly Cross-Check, so I'm wondering how they compare? Is the Surly a superior bike?
    I wouldn't say so. The thing with the Trek is there are many different levels. So depending on your budget, you could find one that fits in nicely. The Surly complete is only one option as far as I know. I'm not a huge Trek fan, but it's not because they aren't a fine bike. What I'm suggesting is this particular type of bike. If your shop has Trek FX, I'd test ride a couple different levels that fit your budget and if you like it, that's your solution....
    Demented internet tail wagging imbicile.

  13. #13
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    Ok thanks, I'll definitely keep that in mind.

  14. #14
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Sitting upright is a benefit , commuting, you can see where you are going , with out craning your neck

    when you are bent over so low..


    Test ride a bunch of bikes, both types. several price points..

  15. #15
    Senior Member Null66's Avatar
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    How much do you weigh?

    Look through the commuter threads.

    Look through the Clydesdale threads.

    Most anything will work for that distance.

    Wider tires improve ride comfort at the (small) price of efficiency. They also reduce flats. If you're quite heavy, they can also improve reliability.

    I'm using a touring bike. But I'm VERY heavy.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Loose Chain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DroppedOnCapric View Post
    Just as an update, I've done some research and found a few that I think would do pretty well. Any complaints/ suggestions on these?

    Trek 1.2 / 1.4
    Raleigh Tripper
    Specialized Allez Sport Compact
    Surly Cross-Check

    These all seem to be able to handle both road and trail.
    There are some who hypothesize that the Surly CC is the best all around bicycle ever made. That might be an exaggeration, maybe not.

    LC
    Steel is Real

    I was once told that only _ussies needed lower than 42/21 gearing.

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  17. #17
    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loose Chain View Post
    There are some who hypothesize that the Surly CC is the best all around bicycle ever made. That might be an exaggeration, maybe not.

    LC
    I think that a touring bike would also fit your needs, try the Trek 520 or the Surly Long Haul Trucker when test riding the other bikes. I recommend touring bikes because they are designed to take a heavy load, accommodate wide tires and typically have 36 spokes per wheel as a minimum.
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
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  18. #18
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    Just as a small update, I ended up ordering the 2014 Specialized Sport Disk. Finally got it in today and rode it for about a mile or a mile and a half, guess-timating on my normal running distance. It wasn't purely I had to manually turn around, I didn't want to do a slow u-turn in the middle of a street entrance.

    I'm loving the bike so far, so much easier to ride than the smaller bike that I learned on. I've ridden a bike maybe four times in my life, so I was ultra surprised to just take off and go around the block no problem. I did spend the two weeks researching the **** out of how to properly ride and go with traffic, so maybe that research paid off.

    I've adjusted the seat to about where I feel it should be. I'm going to ride it for about a week and evaluate if I want to raise it up further. I adjusted it so that at the bottom stroke my knee was almost straight, but after riding it around I felt like my legs weren't able to keep up cadence correctly, it seemed like I'd stall when I got to a certain point of the crank rotation. Is that just bad pedaling technique, or is that a legitimate reason to have the seat a bit lower than "optimal"? Knees feel fine, my hands are what's hurting the worst at the moment. I had a minor case of death grip and my hands were hurting halfway through.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    At modest price points Cross and highbrid
    +1
    Last edited by tim24k; 08-31-13 at 04:19 AM.
    Life is good O^o

  20. #20
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    Bring it back to the shop, describe your issues and ask them to check your fit. If the handlebars are too far away and/or too low you can put too much pressure on your hands. Bringing the bars up and closer to you should help.

    Also try some exercises to strengthen your lower back and abs. A stronger core will help you to be able to support yourself in position on the bike without putting so much pressure on your hands.

    Enjoy!

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