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Old 02-04-12, 08:47 PM   #1
Ripcurlsurfin96
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Cool First time bike buyer!!

Hello All,

I have done my research and as with others it has been an overwhelming amount of information. I have also gone to many different local bike shops and have gotten different opinions as to why their bikes are the best.

I think I have narrowed it down to these below. I am looking for a bike that I can eventually put drop bars on, ride some packed cinder roads in the parks, and ride on the road as well. Can you all please tell me if I am in the right direction or completely off

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...d=12CrossTrail
http://thebicyclechain.com/product/1...x-123180-1.htm
http://thebicyclechain.com/product/1...on-94393-1.htm

I like the idea of the lockout for the front fork. Is their any harm in having that locked and riding on the road or is it better just to get a front fork with no suspension.

As you can also see my price range is in the 600 dollar range. (The specialized bike is 659 on close out for a 2011 model)
Thanks again!!!
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Old 02-04-12, 10:36 PM   #2
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Hey there RipCurl!

I tend not to recommend front suspension, unless the person really wants a mountain bike. Front suspension on bikes at that price point tend to be more trouble than not.

Of the bicycles that you've listed, I would go with the 7.2FX. However, before you make the final decision and purchase that bicycle, allow me to suggest that you at least test-ride the Jamis Coda Sport at your nearest Jamis dealership. It's clearly within your budget and its frame is made of chromoly steel. It will take up to 38mm wide tires, also you can outfit it with rack and fenders, at your leisure. The Jamis Coda Sport won the Bicycling magazine, editor's choice award for being the best hybrid bicycle of 2011. It won that award for a reason!

- Slim
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Old 02-04-12, 10:54 PM   #3
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Steel and rain and humidity. I can smell the rust now. I lived in NC for nine years.

You are not going to want to put drop bars on a bike with suspension. There's a thread here about converting to drop bars; it's not cheap to make this conversion. You don't need suspension to ride packed cinder trails. The 7.2 is a popular choice. There are lots of threads in this section that ask about bikes. Perhaps you could review them, find some additional choices and then ask for opinions.

Cyclocross comes to mind as being a possibility. But during my shopping foray I discovered that cyclocross bikes are pretty expensive. If you are mechanically adept, there are some bikes on bikesdirect.com that people seem to like. I think the Motobecane Fantom has some fans. You could try searching for "fantom", which would only match the bike (unless people can't spell well).

Perhaps converting can be pretty inexpensive as I found this conversion info. Of course, it depends on what you have and what you want. I generally don't know what shifter goes with what derailleur, etc.

Last edited by a1penguin; 02-04-12 at 10:59 PM. Reason: Found interesting conversion post
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Old 02-04-12, 11:05 PM   #4
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Steel and rain and humidity. I can smell the rust now. I lived in NC for nine years.

You are not going to want to put drop bars on a bike with suspension. There's a thread here about converting to drop bars; it's not cheap to make this conversion. You don't need suspension to ride packed cinder trails. The 7.2 is a popular choice. There are lots of threads in this section that ask about bikes. Perhaps you could review them, find some additional choices and then ask for opinions.

Cyclocross comes to mind as being a possibility. But during my shopping foray I discovered that cyclocross bikes are pretty expensive. If you are mechanically adept, there are some bikes on bikesdirect.com that people seem to like. I think the Motobecane Fantom has some fans. You could try searching for "fantom", which would only match the bike (unless people can't spell well).

Perhaps converting can be pretty inexpensive as I found this conversion info. Of course, it depends on what you have and what you want. I generally don't know what shifter goes with what derailleur, etc.
I totally agree 90% with A1Penguin!

That handlebar conversion is more than just a walk in the park. It can get quite expensive, too. If you want a CX bike, then just wait and get what you really want!

PS.

A1Penguin, just temporarily lost it when commenting on chromoly steel. It wasn't said while sober, trust me!

Last edited by SlimRider; 02-04-12 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 02-05-12, 01:26 AM   #5
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I'm a really big fan of the DS series but I would have to say go with the FX out of those three. If you want to go the drop bar route I would say look into Cyclocross bikes that use wider tires and already have the drop bars.
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Old 02-05-12, 07:44 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Ripcurlsurfin96 View Post
Hello All,

I have done my research and as with others it has been an overwhelming amount of information. I have also gone to many different local bike shops and have gotten different opinions as to why their bikes are the best.

I think I have narrowed it down to these below. I am looking for a bike that I can eventually put drop bars on, ride some packed cinder roads in the parks, and ride on the road as well. Can you all please tell me if I am in the right direction or completely off

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/...d=12CrossTrail
http://thebicyclechain.com/product/1...x-123180-1.htm
http://thebicyclechain.com/product/1...on-94393-1.htm

I like the idea of the lockout for the front fork. Is their any harm in having that locked and riding on the road or is it better just to get a front fork with no suspension.

As you can also see my price range is in the 600 dollar range. (The specialized bike is 659 on close out for a 2011 model)
Thanks again!!!
I live pretty close to Raleigh NC, and have shopped at the Bike Chain often, the two stores that I go to to the most, never have recalled seeing a TREK bike in stock. This Bike shop carrys a much larger inventory, and will normally work a better deal : http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...0551_500059_-1___ ) same area. they have a much larger inventory on there bikes in stock, and seem to be willing to work out a better deal. Your riding style does not seem to warrant front suspension on the bike, it is just extra weight, and very pricey for decent forks, also it does not appear that disk brakes is also something that would really need to come into play in your choice, ( find them to have no better stopping power, unless something comes between the rim and the pads, like MUD, SNOW, SAND, ETC... so your money could be spent on other components. Now on the drop thing, WOW, that is a different topic, and the least expensive ones that I have test rode have been at the Bike Chain a few years ago, and started off at 1200.00 dollars on Cycle Cross Bikes, plus they did not feel good, neither worth there money. Now REI in Cary has this bike in stock, in 2 sizes (17 1/2 ") and a (20 1/2") , and they bury it on there web-site but it is there. ( LOL) nice component mix for the price range. But were back to not really needing disk brakes, and then the drop conversion later ? You have not mentioned your size, but you might want to try something like this just to get an idea of what works for you. Order it site to store, I will come assemble it for you for a StarBucks frappuccino and a thank you. Link : http://www.walmart.com/ip/700C-GMC-D...-Bike/12080282 you will not have to much invested, and always have 90 days to get your money back. Here are the bike specs as listed : GMC Men's Road Bike, Denali 700C:
  • Frame: Strong, lightweight aluminum frame with aerodynamic tubing
  • Frame size: 22.5" (57.5cm)
  • Handlebars: Road race-style drop handlebars
  • Gearing: 21-speed Shimano drive train with easy-twist shifting
  • Brakes: Powerful alloy side-pull caliper brakes
  • Wheels: High-profile aero alloy wheels with machined braking surface
  • Tires: 700 x 32c tires for smooth ride and low-rolling resistance
  • Seat: Comfortable Vitesse seat and secure twin bolt seat post collar on the GMC men's road bike
I bought the Schwinn Varsity last night the store, adjusted it in the parking lot. (almost 2 hours), and could not be more happy ! Except it is pouring down rain here this morning and wanting to go riding. You are throwing out there so many idea's, this is the best I could come up with, just so you can try something out for a while, with NO money at risk. Hope this helps , Richard
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Old 02-05-12, 12:07 PM   #7
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If you have a KHS dealer near you, have a look at the Urban Xtreme.

http://www.khsbicycles.com/06_urban_xtreme_10.htm
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Old 02-05-12, 01:54 PM   #8
Ripcurlsurfin96
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Thanks for all the suggestions and responses! After talking to the people I will be riding with it seems like we will be staying on rougher roads and cinder so I went with what one is already riding with. The Trek 8.3 DS. Love the fit love the ride...Now the weather needs to clear up!! Will post pics shortly!

Thanks again
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Old 02-05-12, 03:26 PM   #9
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Old 02-05-12, 04:00 PM   #10
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Nice looking bike! The Trek DS owners on this forum seem to be happy with this bike and use it on mixed riding (road and off-road). And I see plenty of mountain bikes out on the road. The suspension lockout will improve the performance of riding on smooth roads. I really like the disk brakes on my FX. Enjoy!
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Old 02-05-12, 05:23 PM   #11
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Nice choice
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Old 02-05-12, 05:59 PM   #12
Ripcurlsurfin96
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Thanks!! Really excited to get out there and start riding.. 40 degrees and raining today though...go figure lol
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Old 02-06-12, 03:14 AM   #13
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Nice choice
+1 ; )
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Old 02-06-12, 08:44 AM   #14
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Thanks!! Really excited to get out there and start riding.. 40 degrees and raining today though...go figure lol
Yeah at least it's better than snow. I'm waiting for the weather to get warmer aswell.
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Old 02-06-12, 09:42 AM   #15
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Very nice looking bike, I have the 2011 Utopia which is pretty much an 8.4 with Mechanical Discs and I love the bike even on pavement. Hopfully you'll enjoy yours too as it sounds like you'll be taking advantage of it and actually taking it off road something I've yet to do.
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