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Hybrid Bicycles Where else would you go to discuss these fun, versatile bikes?

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Old 07-24-11, 11:17 PM   #1
Widds
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Second Opinions: Raleigh, Norco and beyond

Hi all.

I'm a newbie here -- I've not ridden a bike since my teens (gettin' close to 30 now), but am hoping to change that in the not too distant future. I started doing some research online, and hybrids seem like a pretty good entry point. They're a less intimidating investment than a road bike, and I tend to find a slightly more upright seating position more comfortable anyhoo.

I hit up my local bike shop today with some questions. My main concern is that I'm a big guy (~300 lbs), and I want to make sure that whatever I end up buying isn't going to be buckling under the pressure after a year. The clerk I spoke with said that an aluminum frame should be fine for me (I had mentioned that I figured steel was the way to go), and that making sure I get something with double wall alloy rims would be a help if I was concerned about durability.

His recommendations, of the brands they sell, were either:
Raleigh's Detour series (http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes/hybrid/detour-45-11/)
or
Norco's Indie series (http://www.norco.com/bikes/urban/per...urban/indie-3/)

Granted, I'm going to check in with some of the other shops in my area to get a feel for what they have, and I'll definitely try giving a few test rides before making any decisions, but I wondered if you folks had any opinions/insights to offer. Most of the specs are greek to me, so it's hard to get an idea of the comparative benefits of one bike over another in the abstract.
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Old 07-30-11, 05:19 PM   #2
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Whelp, I ended up going to a few more bike shops in the area, and was told more or less the same which put my mind at ease a bit. I ended up going with the Indie 3 after test riding a few. It felt good, and damned if it isn't a sexy beast. I went to the shop like a kid in a candy store; I got my bike, a helmet, a pump, a multitool, and a bottle holder, and rode home.

Took 'er out for my first real spin today -- a brisk 4 mile jaunt up and down a local bike trail -- and I tell you what: I knew I was in for some surprises, having not been on a bike in ages. I was prepared for throbbing legs and a sore rear end, and to be fair I did get both of those things in small part. The thing I didn't expect, which took me out of the game before either of the others could, was my hands. It's time to get me some gloves, methinks.
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Old 07-30-11, 05:58 PM   #3
scooter bopp
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Congrats on the sweet new bike! I got back into riding a few years ago. Yep, my hands going numb has been a real problem for me also. The gloves help but didn't solve the problem. I try to keep my weight off the palms of my hands. Have fun and ride lots. It gets easier and more fun as you go.
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Old 07-30-11, 07:49 PM   #4
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Congrats on the new ride -- very nice! I'm not familiar with that brand, but it reminds me in looks and specs of the 2011 Misceo.

As far as the grips issue, if the gloves don't cut it for you then you might try some ergo grips. The Ergon brand are very popular around here I've noticed.

Have fun riding!!
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Old 07-31-11, 09:31 AM   #5
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Thanks for the advice, guys. I think Scooter has the right of it -- gloves will certainly help, but I'm sure 90% of the problem is that I'm reflexively grabbing the handles too tightly to keep my balance as I re-learn to ride naturally.
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Old 07-31-11, 09:52 AM   #6
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Just time on the bike will probably get your hands used to it somewhat. Gloves with gel padding absorbs a lot of the shock. I don't like riding without barends, you should get a pair of those.

I had a broken bone in my wrist repaired in January and now that hand gets numb easier than it used to do. I periodically ride with one had for a half a minute or so alternating between making a tight fist and extending my fingers. This makes the numbness go away. Shaking out the hand (as though trying to fling water off it) helps too.
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