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  1. #1
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    need help on a purchasing decision.

    I love forums, it is the single most awesome thing about living in the info age.

    Hi I'm a noob and I am a commuter. I have a 7 mile x2 ride about 3 times a week. It's a pretty mixed ride going from long island city NY to the World Trade Center in Manhattan. I usually only have about less than 30 minutes to do it in or I miss my train.

    so that's me in a nutshell, now on to my question.

    I have this bike


    it's a felt with shimano wheels. The frame is light weight aluminum double butted with carbon fiber back side and a carbon fiber fork. The problem I have is the wheels get untrue very easily. I had them trued not to long ago and it keeps happening where I am forced to go without riding for a while until I find time to take it into the bike shop. Are these wheels crap? If they are my budget is about $300 what do you think I can get that is around that price or if these are good wheels should I just learn to true the wheels myself and just suck it up? Is truing hard?

    I found this bike for sale $400



    it's a Trek 5200 OCLV with Shimano Ultegra Bontrager components

    Is the trek better than my felt? Should I skip the wheel upgrade and just get this bike? The wheel set I am looking at is the Vuelta Corsa Lite Road Wheelset for $250 brand new. From what I gather this is a good deal. I'm not against getting used wheels but I need to establish the worth of the wheels I have now. Is it standard that the wheels become untrue over time? If so who much time should one expect the wheels to remain true.

    Ok I've taken enough of your time any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    I don't know the quality of the current wheels, but if you otherwise like the bike either get it re-spoked by someone who knows what they're doing or buy new wheels from a reputable website or builder.
    Rick T
    --------
    Volagi - Triple"ized" and Tubeless
    daVinci Joint Venture

  3. #3
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    the wheels just say shimano on them. No other writing so i have no clue what they are. I had some Mavic mountain bike wheels on my last bike and those felt lighter and sturdier than these. My thing is that I've had them respoked once and now about 3 months later i am needing to have it done again.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Dfrost's Avatar
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    Get wheels with more spokes, like the 32-spoke wheels on that Trek. Ideally, have them built by someone who knows how to build decent wheels. You will never notice the difference in weight or drag on your commute or even on much longer rides. Then learn how to take care of them yourself. It is NOT difficult.

    BTW, that Trek looks like a nice bike for the price, but you have a triple crank now, while that one is a double.

    PS. Is there a reason you have the rear fender up in the air like a shark fin?

  5. #5
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    that fender sucks, when ever I get off my bike it's all turned to the side. It does what it wants.
    So you wouldn't recommend the vuelta http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...6#ReviewHeader

  6. #6
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    I took a look at the inside and found that the wheels I currently own are shimano wh-r500. I will have them fixed and will keep them as spares. According to the internets these are kind of low end. So a wheel upgrade is a most definite. If the trek was shorter (around 54cm) I'd hoped on it but at 60cm it's way to tall for me.

    now onto choosing a wheel. I kind of still have my heart set on the ones I mentioned above. But I like the idea of having more spokes to keep them as maintenance as possible. Oh decisions decisions.

  7. #7
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    Your handlebars are sky high. As long as you're looking at purchasing, think about a hybrid instead of road bike. It'd probably be more your riding style.
    Also, your current frame is too big if you need the saddle that low.

  8. #8
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    Wow you have a good eye. Yes my current bike is to large for me. I'm 5'3" and wear a size 30 inseam. I should have a 53/54 cm bike. This one is well above that. I got it because it was a killer deal and I didn't know any better. I was coming off of a dahon that I road until it literally fell apart. Having the bar low puts strain on my wrist and hurts my back so I raised it so I can have an upright ride. I lug around a well filled backpack so that doesn't help. I like having the lightness of a road bike and the speed. Before I got on this bike I never knew how awesome bike riding was. It was like going from driving beat up old station wagons to getting in a last years model Acura.

    I guess I should keep an eye out for a smaller frame.

  9. #9
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    the trek bike would be ok if it fits you. but the geometry is lay down racing style than sit up riding like your felt is. i would suggest looking for something like a trek FX hybrid, a specialized sirris, aluminun version of the roubaix or other manufacturers that have hybrid with a road bike style frame aka flat bar road bike.
    i have a set of vuelta corsica pros on my specialized roubaix and a set of the vuelta corsica hd on my trek hybrid.
    i would highly recommend both set of wheels.
    i am a big guy around 220, but i usually ride on nice roads and paved trails.
    i have over 3000 miles on the pros without ever needing truing.
    i only have ridden the hd wheels about 200 miles.
    i would suggest looking for online nashbar discount codes and waiting for a sale at nashbar.
    on both sets of wheels i paid less than $200 for a set.
    Last edited by mrt2you; 11-04-13 at 06:13 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post
    Wow you have a good eye. Yes my current bike is to large for me. I'm 5'3" and wear a size 30 inseam. I should have a 53/54 cm bike. This one is well above that. I got it because it was a killer deal and I didn't know any better. I was coming off of a dahon that I road until it literally fell apart. Having the bar low puts strain on my wrist and hurts my back so I raised it so I can have an upright ride. I lug around a well filled backpack so that doesn't help. I like having the lightness of a road bike and the speed...
    It' possible that you got the back pain from being too stretched out. This bike would not just be taller than the correct size - 50cm or 52cm would be better for your height - it's also longer in the top tube. Top tube length is the most important dimension for comfort, not stand-over clearance. (I'm 5'-8" and I fit a 53 or 54 cm frame)
    Or, you could look at a flat bar road bike such as the Cannondale Quick.

  11. #11
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    I was going to suggest to just invest in some bombproof wheels, but it looks like your bike just plain doesn't fit you...i.e. frame size too large. If that is the case, I wouldn't invest any more money into it. Personally, in your situation, something similar in concept to the Specialized AWOL would be what I'd be looking for. More of an urban/city/hybrid bike than a road bike. Something with fairly meaty rubber, possibly a steel frame. Trek FX, etc might be something to look at, or a Surly Straggler, or a Cannondale Bad Boy. Lots of stuff out there in that genre.
    Last edited by syncro87; 11-04-13 at 07:09 AM.

  12. #12
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    What am I loosing by switching to a hybrid from a road bike? I hate climbing hills so fixes just seem crazy to me, although I'm always getting passed up by fixies...damn hipsters.

  13. #13
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    the fewer the spokes, the more each spoke tension effects the rim truing ..

    to no small extent, the More, the merrier .. get a 36 spoke wheelset.



    yellow one seems like its wrong , or you have no clue about saddle height, relative to the crank

    leg extension riding , rather than ease of reaching the ground when you stop.


    I size people for bikes , in LBS, by putting them on them in person... cant do that here.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 11-04-13 at 10:16 AM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
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    yes
    you need a new bike that fits
    rather than just a new wheelset
    sell the felt and whatever you get make sure it does not have low spoke count wheels

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    I size people for bikes , in LBS, by putting them on them in person... cant do that here.
    What am I supposed to feel like when on a properly fitted bike? As it is now my tip toes barely touch the ground when upright. My legs don't hyper extend when pedaling, they keep a nice bend. The only problem I have now is when I do a lot of tough climbing I feel it in my lower back and the spokes keep coming loose. Other than that I love this bike. But you are experts so I am looking for a smaller bike. I found this one actually
    00f0f_gdRh9wedGjb_600x450.jpg

    52cm frame. I'd get a freewheel single speed because i don't exactly know how the heck you go downhills using a fixie.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post
    What am I supposed to feel like when on a properly fitted bike? As it is now my tip toes barely touch the ground when upright. My legs don't hyper extend when pedaling, they keep a nice bend. The only problem I have now is when I do a lot of tough climbing I feel it in my lower back and the spokes keep coming loose. Other than that I love this bike. But you are experts so I am looking for a smaller bike. I found this one actually
    00f0f_gdRh9wedGjb_600x450.jpg

    52cm frame. I'd get a freewheel single speed because i don't exactly know how the heck you go downhills using a fixie.
    You'd need to add brakes as well. On a fixed gear bike, you slow the bike down by applying back pressure to the pedals. With a freewheel you don't get that option.
    If you're already getting back pain from hills on your present bike, the last thing you want is a bike that gives you only one gear. A lot of people just ride in one gear all the time and grind very slowly on hills. The gear combinations are there for a reason, shift down to make it easier on yourself.
    Don't worry about where your feet are relative to the ground when you're in the saddle. It's irrelevant. Go onto the Fitting Your Bike forum to get ideas.
    You want your back to be at about 45-50 degrees to horizontal, your upper arms about 90 degrees to your torso and slightly bent. That's a rough starting point. You also want the ball of your foot, not the arch, to be over the pedal spindle. When the cranks are parallel to the ground, your knee should be directly over the pedal spindle.

  17. #17
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    I am taking your guys' advice and down sizing. I found a guy that would trade me a giant OCR 1. It's 52cm. Good trade?

  18. #18
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    What am I supposed to feel like when on a properly fitted bike?
    As it is now my tip toes barely touch the ground when upright.
    is this while straddling the Top tube of the FRAME, AHEAD of the SADDLE?

    that is the most basic.. stand over, flat footed .. how far can you lift the front-wheel ?
    Last edited by fietsbob; 11-12-13 at 10:49 AM.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    is this while straddling the Top tube of the FRAME, AHEAD of the SADDLE?

    that is the most basic.. stand over, flat footed .. how far can you lift the front-wheel ?
    Yes that is from the saddle. I don't think I can lift the front wheel without jumping off.

  20. #20
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Yes that is from the saddle. I don't think I can lift the front wheel without jumping off.
    thats your problem wrong Way to go about it ..


    frame size choice, is in relation to where you stand over it ahead of the saddle
    your Butt off the seat .
    If you really need to touch the ground without getting off the saddle

    You need a crank forward frame bike, like Trek Pure .. they are not performance frames .
    a recumbent, where you are way lower , you have the seat back to push against for power.

    Saddle height is adjusted relative to the pedal-leg extension .

    unless the BB height is really low tippy toe is normal at stops , some bikes, higher BB, It requires getting off
    or pulling over and putting your foot on the raised curb.

  21. #21
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    The video on this page shows the straddle start. This is the way I always start from an intersection.
    http://sheldonbrown.com/starting.html

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post
    I am taking your guys' advice and down sizing. I found a guy that would trade me a giant OCR 1. It's 52cm. Good trade?
    What year is it? It's a nice bike, but if the OCR3 might be more suitable for commuting. If you aren't very heavy, you might be able to get away with so few spokes in the wheels. And it does seem to have rack and fender eyelets.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhodabike View Post
    The video on this page shows the straddle start. This is the way I always start from an intersection.
    http://sheldonbrown.com/starting.html
    My bike was so tall compared to me, my starting technique is not even listed. I had to lay the bike at a 45 degree angle, put my foot on the pedal then right the bike while using my wieght to push down on the pedal my foot was on.

    I decided to trade for the ocr one. I met the guy and tried his bike. I instantly fell in love with the feel. The guy kept it in excellent condition and it weighs the same as my felt f70. I'm going to put a rear rack to take the weight off of my back when I ride.

    I'd like to thank everyone of you guys. Yous guys really helped me out and saved me from pouring more money in to a bike that was obviously wrong for me. Bike forums FTW.
    Last edited by trunolimit; 11-14-13 at 06:37 PM.

  24. #24
    Senior Member Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trunolimit View Post
    I decided to trade for the ocr one. I met the guy and tried his bike. I instantly fell in love with the feel. The guy kept it in excellent condition and it weighs the same as my felt f70. I'm going to put a rear rack to take the weight off of my back when I ride.
    this sounds like the best possible solution
    rack and panniers turn a bike from a toy into a useful tool

    next stop
    fenderville

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