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Old 12-23-13, 09:29 AM   #1
40plusnewbie
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if you could make two upgrades what would they be?

I have a 2009 Schwinn SuperSport XL frame and currently ride 25-40 mile rides. I am over 6 feet and 230 lbs. I have done no upgrades to this bike and I would like to increase my distances and even do the Seattle to Portland ride. If you could do upgrades to this bike (limited funds) what would they be and in what priority?
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Old 12-23-13, 09:54 AM   #2
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I'd say that regardless of bike, if the seat is not exactly right or very close to that, I would consider a different (but not necessarily more expensive) saddle. I'd also look into whether or not the handlebar/stem position is right. If so, I would look at my pedals (and that too depends a lot on preferences).

All in all, I think you should try to first alleviate any problems with fit (including saddle) - if there are any - and then consider comfort items like new shoes, wider or better pedals, new grips, maybe bar extensions, or whatever might make you more comfortable.
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Old 12-23-13, 09:59 AM   #3
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I don't think we know what components are on that bike, but I suspect a cheap saddle and tires would go first. I would be nervous about the wheelset for distance riding, but with limited funds I might simply deal with all the other stock components as is. If the bar grip tape is cheapo stuff I might change it out for something nice - after hours of continuous riding it makes a difference...
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Old 12-23-13, 10:03 AM   #4
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I would think with any bike it's probably the same in terms of what to change.

Saddle
bars/grips
pedals/foot retention
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Old 12-23-13, 10:04 AM   #5
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first upgrade would be my body
second upgrade would be my riding locale

but since you are already in a good riding locale
and your body is at one hundred percent peak condition
get a new set of tires
lightweight ones with nice supple sidewalls
like panaracer paselas

second upgrade would be fresh new handlebar tape
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Old 12-23-13, 10:16 AM   #6
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comfy seat
comfy handbar setup (ergo grips with bar ends for added hand positions)
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Old 12-23-13, 10:26 AM   #7
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Wow! I don't think we could get this much agreement on the color of grass.
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Old 12-23-13, 10:37 AM   #8
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Upgrade what is worn out first.

How's the cassette and chain rings? Have the wheels been breaking spokes lately?

Shifting OK? If you've never changed the cables and housings, it's probably past time. I wouldn't call that an upgrade as much as routine maintenance.

Probably your best bet is to save your pennies for a better road bike.
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Old 12-23-13, 10:43 AM   #9
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Everyone says that the best bang for the buck, for the first upgrade, are the tires. They're probably right - even slightly less crappy tires are discernibly better. The second priority, and again they're probably right, are the wheels.
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Old 12-23-13, 10:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Wow! I don't think we could get this much agreement on the color of grass.
We couldn't. I'd go for new wheels/tires first but I don't know anything about the condition of the bike. There may be some parts in worse shape that need replacing. That said, wheels are your biggest bang for the buck and you don't need to go crazy on this. Handspun wheels are pretty reasonably priced and you can get something that will work for your kind of riding and weight. Or get your local LBS to build you a wheel.
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Old 12-23-13, 11:07 AM   #11
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I'd upgrade my lungs, then my legs
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Old 12-23-13, 01:33 PM   #12
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components on the 2009 supersport

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrenchFit View Post
I don't think we know what components are on that bike, but I suspect a cheap saddle and tires would go first. I would be nervous about the wheelset for distance riding, but with limited funds I might simply deal with all the other stock components as is. If the bar grip tape is cheapo stuff I might change it out for something nice - after hours of continuous riding it makes a difference...
I find the bike comfortable. Here are the components:
BIO TUNED saddle, handlebar and Ergo end bars
Kendra K-193s (700x28)
Alloy rims
SR SunTour PFF crank and shifters
Shimano Altus Rear/Shimano Nexave front
Promax brakes

Last edited by 40plusnewbie; 12-24-13 at 02:40 PM.
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Old 12-23-13, 02:36 PM   #13
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That's a fine bike for everyday riding, but it's not really upgradeable. Maybe you could add Ergon grips for comfort? Maybe just upgrade the engine while you save for the next bike...
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Old 12-23-13, 03:40 PM   #14
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Those are $15 tires for tooling around town. Nothing wrong with that, but I wouldn't go across state betting on a pair of Kendra hybrid tires.
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Old 12-23-13, 07:34 PM   #15
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Upgrades: Better engine, Better bike

Honestly, the first upgrades I would make to a bike would be any rider interface points that weren't up to par. That would be: handlebar, stem, grips or controls; saddle and/or seatpost; or pedals. Which two to pick first would depend on which ones would result in the greatest increase in comfort.

Not really an upgrade, but a good fitting is always the first step.

It's amazing how much more enjoyable any bike is when you are comfortable on it. It is also surprising how much comfort affects performance.

Last edited by Myosmith; 12-23-13 at 07:40 PM.
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Old 12-23-13, 09:54 PM   #16
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what wheels/tires would you recommend?
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Old 12-24-13, 07:23 AM   #17
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Cartridge bearing wheels for any bike. Custom handlebars made to fit YOU (not a fairing) on a recumbent. bk
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Old 12-24-13, 07:39 AM   #18
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I have an original Volagi. I simply love this bike. Current upgrades include
1. Changed out Ultegra for Campy/SRAM at time of purchase
2. Changed compact to triple
3. Changed wheels/tires to a tubeless configuration
4. Changed Avid BB7 to TRP HY/RD

The bike is perfect for my age, fitness, terrain, etc. When Garmin comes out with MTB Vector pedals I'm going to consider. I'm a senior citizen geek. I don't need power, but cycling is my major post-retirement recreation and I enjoy the data even though I'm slow. I do like SPDs, however, so I'll wait for the MTB configuration and, hopefully, some slight price reduction. Can't go Powertap since my rear dropout spacing is 130mm.
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Old 12-24-13, 08:12 AM   #19
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My legs and lungs are great for a 58 year old.
I'd like a groovy carbon fiber handlebars and a new saddle...some new tires would be nice too.
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Old 12-24-13, 10:32 AM   #20
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If you are above your optimum weight, the best thing you can do is get back to it. It is the simplest way to improve your cycling.
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Old 12-24-13, 11:17 AM   #21
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At your weight, the ride would be more comfortable with tires wider than 28mm. Room for anything larger, which could be run at lower pressure for the same or even improved performance? Someone mentioned Panaracer Pasela - they come in 32 and 35 widths, with or without Tourguard puncture protection. Touring tires, not racing tires.
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Old 12-24-13, 11:22 AM   #22
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My two would be------100# tires on the front of my trike, and upgrade the RD and shifter to Sram 7 componets.
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Old 12-24-13, 12:05 PM   #23
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Quote:
Promax breaks (edit: Brakes)
Kool Stop brake pads ..

I like figure 8 bend trekking bars better than straight bars with bar ends, when possible..

I have Ergon GR3 on my M3L Brompton.. [ the folding makes the Trekking bar impractical. ]

Non Folding Bike got trekking bars .. the fore and aft grip functions,
when reaching further and bending your elbows , like going into a headwind.
something like going into the drops on those type bars ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 12-24-13 at 12:14 PM.
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Old 12-24-13, 11:13 PM   #24
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This is a crazy question because we have no idea what condition the bike is in! The distance you're going isn't far, heck people have ridden further on Walmart bikes so there's no need to get excited about the quality of your bike and wondering if you'll make it.

Assuming it's like new then I wouldn't upgrade a dang thing, and if you've been riding it then why would you need another seat? I would invest in some good tires so the trip will be flat free hopefully, tires like a set of Schwalbe Marathon Plus size 700 x 32 in the rear (they should fit because your bike came stock with 28's so one size up is completely within the range of the rim and bike frame), and 28's front. Or for a less money and if you travelling lighter is the Panaracer T-Serv Protex also 32's on rear and 28's on front. Add to that a pair of Panaracer FlatAway liners just to be safe, and a decent pair of tubes (buy 4 sets of tubes so you have 2 extra to take along).

Next would be Fenders to keep road spray off of you and the bike.

Personally I would take the bike into a shop and tell the service tech what you have in mind and you want to them to prepare the bike for the event. The reason I recommend that is because it doesn't sound like you know what your doing when it comes to preparing the bike, this isn't a slam against you, a lot of people don't know what their doing and go out touring. But this way the tech can make suggestions, in fact take our suggestions with you and see what the tech thinks, most of the suggestions he'll probably boohoo away.
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Old 12-25-13, 07:15 AM   #25
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I've mostly added to my bike - rack, lights, bell, bar ends. The only parts I have upgraded are the pedals and the tires. The hard soled cycling shoes ended the pain in my foot (I usually wear soft soled shoes - after a few months of cycling in those, the arch of my foot had started hurting). The tires (Panaracer Pasela) made a huge difference to how the bike feels - it really feels like a different, better bike. The Paselas (non-TG) were $20 apiece from Jenson USA, with free shipping since my friend and I clubbed our orders together.
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