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Old 03-09-10, 07:20 PM   #1
ron177
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Seeking advice on purchasing a bike

I would like to purchase a bike in order to commute between school and home (less than 2 miles one way). The area in question is paved but there are lots of places where the pavements are broken and the city is also a little hilly.

I thought my best option would be a hybrid bike. I looked into Fuji Crosstown 3.0 ($410), Diamondback Edgewood LX ($300), Schwinn Midmoor ($250), Lamborghini Urbano ($200), Kent 26" Men's Glendale CS Dual-Suspension ($100). I have a few questions which I hope you can help me with.

1. What type of bike is best fit to my use? Do I really need a front and seat suspensions on the bike?

2. Since money is an issue for me, I would like to buy the least expensive but still pretty decent bike (hopefully somewhere between $100 and $200). Any recommendations on other bikes which I have not considered?

3. From the bikes I mention above, which is best suited to my work or which brand is better?

4. Where and how do you purchase bikes? Is it better to conduct the transaction online, in a bike shop, or a department store? I have done some research on all three and I am leaning on buying something at the local sports shop called Sports Authority.

Thank you so much in advance!
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Old 03-09-10, 08:30 PM   #2
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Tough question. Knee jerk is to suggest the Fuji as they are generally a good bike for the money. $400 is about the minimum I see for a decent full set up. A bike that is made up of cheap components and a bad frame is no fun to ride. If it's no fun you won't keep up with it and your $200 is money you should have spent on lottery tickets or booze or whatever...

You do not want suspension to start with. It robs you of forward power and wears you out more than it comforts you. It's heavy and requires more maintenance. The bigger tires on these bikes will absorb a lot and if you ride a correctly fitting bike you won't get too beat up. Early lesson is to use your knees and elbows as shock absorbers on the bumpy stuff.

Question #4 is loaded. You asking these questions throws out "online" and department stores because you need advice, right? You will pay for that at a GOOD local bike store (an LBS on these forums) but they will help you work into the bike and fix the little things that need fixing early on. Are you mechanically inclined?

There may be a bike co-op or some kind of club near where you live. You will find that most of us that like to ride a bike will try to help someone else with our knowledge. Having said that there are those who will not understand if you don't follow their advice and those that will not give you the advice you are asking for.

Good Luck and let us know how you're doing.
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Old 03-09-10, 08:39 PM   #3
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Get the Fuji or the Diamondback if those are your only choices. Screw suspension. Stay away from department stores. Find a local bike shop. You will not find a good new bike for $100-200. Check Craiglist maybe for a deal. Maybe your LBS will have a decent used bike for a nice price too. Another idea is to find some used hardtail laying around somewhere and simply replace the suspension fork and there ya go, your new commuter. Would even handle fenders and racks if ever needed. You'd have versatility in tire size and as wide of gearing as you would ever want probably.
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Old 03-09-10, 08:54 PM   #4
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Daredevil brought an important point for an all around type bike. Fenders. If you are going to commute there is a 100% possibility that you will ride in the rain unless you are in the desert and even then.
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Old 03-09-10, 08:58 PM   #5
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So if I put aside $300 to $400, what brands do you recommend, that is, besides Fuji and Diamondback? I looked at Trek Hybrids and they look very nice too. Any other brands I should consider such as Giant, Cannondale, etc.?

I should add that I went down to my local bike store and spent quite a bit of time speaking with people there and trying their bikes. They recommended me a Fuji because they carry Fuji bikes themselves. They also recommended me to have a front suspension on the bike. But from what I hear on this forum, it seems that with the terrain I described (mostly pavement but there are broken pavements and some small bumps and hills to pass) I do not need a front suspension -- which actually helps to bring down the price of a bike: so a Fuji without a suspension is around $300 for instance.
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Old 03-09-10, 09:05 PM   #6
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All the major manufacturers (Giant, Cannondale, Trek etc.) that most bike shops carry are nice bikes. Them saying you need front suspension is bullshlt. Could be they're just trying to move merchandise. Doesn't the 3.0 have front suspension? Whether it does or not, it wouldn't be a bad buy in my opinion.
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Old 03-10-10, 08:35 AM   #7
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Thank you everyone for responding to my query. A Fuji Crosstown 3.0 has a front suspension. It costs $410. However, there is a Fuji Crosstown 4.0 which doesn't have a front suspension and it costs $330. I wonder if I should buy this one. So all in all I am concluding (based on everyone's posts) that a front suspension is not an essential thing for my purpose and it's not common on a hybrid. Is that correct?
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Old 03-10-10, 09:50 AM   #8
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Thank you everyone for responding to my query. A Fuji Crosstown 3.0 has a front suspension. It costs $410. However, there is a Fuji Crosstown 4.0 which doesn't have a front suspension and it costs $330. I wonder if I should buy this one. So all in all I am concluding (based on everyone's posts) that a front suspension is not an essential thing for my purpose and it's not common on a hybrid. Is that correct?
Common or not on a hybrid I'm not sure but personally, I would get the bike without the suspension.
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Old 03-10-10, 09:55 AM   #9
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Common or not on a hybrid I'm not sure but personally, I would get the bike without the suspension.
+1

Spend the saved money on fenders and a rack.
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Old 03-10-10, 11:55 AM   #10
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Agreed. You will probably not really need the suspension.....unless you are old like me..
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Old 03-10-10, 12:30 PM   #11
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As someone else mentioned (and I found out myself) fenders, a rack, and paniers can really add up, so don't forget to take that into account when determining your budget for the bike. A rack and trunk or paniers will take a load off your shoulders (and wrists if you have bad posture like me) and you won't have the sweaty back like you do from riding with a backpack.
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