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Old 01-15-13, 12:38 PM   #1
diesel44
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help please - new to cycling - Trek 8.3 vs Giant roam

Can anyone help me make a decision?

I am down to two options. i am 5'9'' and about 250 lbs. 2012 trek 8.3 ds or a giant roam 2 2013

both have disc brakes and lockout on the front fork, I am new to biking and the rest is pretty much over my head

#1 2012 trek 8.3 ds for 570$

Frame:Alpha Gold Aluminium
Fork:SR Suntour NEX 4610, adjustable w/lockout, 63mm travel
Front Derailleur:Shimano Altus
Rear Derailleur:Shimano Acera
Number of Gears:24
Shifters:Shimano M360 Acera, 8-speed trigger
Chainset:Shimano Acera, 48/38/28
Cassette:Shimano HG31 11-32, 8 speed
Pedals:Wellgo nylon body w/alloy cage
Front Brake:Tektro Novela mechanical disc brakes
Rear Brake:Tektro Novela mechanical disc brakes
Brake Levers:Tektro alloy levers
Handlebars- Bontrager Low Riser, 25mm rise
Stem:Bontrager Approved, 15 degree
Headset:Semi-integrated, semi-cartridge bearings, sealed
Grips:Bontrager Satellite Plus
Rims:Bontrager 750 disc 32-hole alloy rims
Front Hub:Alloy hubs
Rear Hub:Alloy hubs
Front Tyre:Bontrager H5, 700x38c
Rear Tyre:Bontrager H5, 700x38c
Saddle:Bontrager SSR
Seatpost:Bontrager SSR



#2 2013 giant roam 2 for $520 - store special

Frame> ALUXX-Grade Aluminum
Fork> SR Suntour NEX, 63mm, w/lock-out
Crankset> Shimano M391, 26/36/48t
Cassette> Shimano HG50, 11x34, 9-speed
Derailleur's> Shimano Acera
Hubs> Formula
Rims> Giant Alloy, doublewall
Tires> Giant P-RX2, 700x40c
Brakes> Tektro HDC 300, hydraulic disc
Saddle> Giant Sport Trail



Attached Images
File Type: jpg Roam_2_Disk.jpg (96.7 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg 2012 trek 8.3 ds.jpg (101.1 KB, 27 views)
File Type: jpg giant roam.jpg (62.2 KB, 23 views)

Last edited by diesel44; 01-15-13 at 01:23 PM.
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Old 01-15-13, 02:16 PM   #2
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They both have the same high gear (48x11), but the Giant has a lower gear for climbing (26x34). If you intend to mount a rear rack, it will be easier to do so on the Giant. The hydraulic brakes on the Giant are (theoretically) more powerful, but aren't easily serviced or repairable in the field in the unlikely event some sort of catastrophic failure were to occur.

Ride them both and get the one that just 'feels' better.
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Old 01-15-13, 04:04 PM   #3
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Diesel44 what kind of riding do you plan on doing? If it is mostly paved you might be better off w/o a suspension fork as both these bikes have.Ditto the brakes. While they do have lock outs on them forks on $500 or so bikes are not great as good suspension forks cost as much if not more than a $500 bike alone. Both add quite a bit of weight to the bikes to begin with. However, if you plan on riding mostly dirt trails either bike would great. Ride them both, check out the LBS because you are not only buying a bike but adopting a bike shop as well. You might want to take a look the Giant Escape series. Whatever one you decide on will give you years of service. And btw welcome to the board. I just joined a couple weeks ago myself.
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Old 01-15-13, 04:15 PM   #4
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Ride 'em both. The one you like the best, is the one you should ride.

That being said, you always seem to get more bike for the buck, with Giant ----- probably because they make bikes for so many others.
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Old 01-16-13, 11:54 AM   #5
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Those are the 2 bikes I've been looking at (except Roam 2 - 2012 model & the DS 8.2). You can't go wrong with either, but I'd probably recommend the Giant over the Trek because of what was mentioned above (you get more bike for your buck with Giant). I rode the Roam about a week ago and fell in love with it. Ride is great, its quick, and it just fit me right.
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Old 01-16-13, 06:55 PM   #6
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I agree with the others that you should ride them both and make your own decision. With that being said, I really like my 8.3 (I've got just over 1000 miles on it). It has served me well on plenty of pavement as well as dirt and gravel paths. I am a big fan of the lockout suspension fork. Good luck and let us know what you decide.
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Old 01-16-13, 07:00 PM   #7
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Take a long test ride, not just around the parking lot. This is crucial. Decide after the test ride, not before based on specs and internet research. I learned this the hard way, but fortunately had time (and a good LBS) to correct my mistake.
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Old 01-16-13, 07:35 PM   #8
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Hi Diesel44,
What kind of riding are you planing to do, off road or road? If you're just going to ride urban then just get a bike for streets. No need for suspension forks for street riding.
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Old 01-17-13, 12:26 AM   #9
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I have the 8.3 and I think while it's a great bike - the first thing you have to do is decide where you want to ride. If you really don't see yourself riding off-trail, do as someone said and go without the suspension fork. If you're going to ride 90% on road or packed trail, the fork isn't needed (unless you want it - as I did) and you'll have to pack that weight everywhere you go. I really wish I could go back and think about what I wanted to do - I would have bought the FX line.

Another good point someone made is low gear. Since you're new (like me), if you're going to be climbing a lot of hills, that extra low gear will be your friend. I spend a LOT of time climbing where I live and a lot of time in 1-3 gears. There's still some hills I don't go near because I just can't make it up them. Maybe that little bit of extra would do it for me.

All that said, I love the bike. Shifts well, rides well. I replaced pedals and now tires with more street-oriented models, but it's a great bike. If you're planning on a combo of street and trail and even light off-road, you'll love the 8.3.
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Old 01-17-13, 09:29 PM   #10
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It's funny because I was making this same choice a couple of weeks ago. I couldn't find much difference to speak of between the two bikes. I went with the Roam because I liked the bike shop that sold the brand better than the other.
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Old 01-17-13, 11:01 PM   #11
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My g.f. dad is a 20-100 miles a day rider and my better friend rides when he can and both said the suspension fork w lockout can be good because the trails and concrete sidewalks where I live, sterling heights, MI, (about 20 miles north of detroit)... are not very good. Id have to ride in the rochester romeo area (40 miles north of detroit) for some nicely paved trails. I also plan on trying out "off road" riding and seeing if I even like it. not sure where I can even do that but my property up north has alot of atv trails. haha

Plus I am an ex minor pro hockey player just trying to find some fun in trying to stay in shape, working out has lost all its meaning now that I have quit playing competitive hockey.. I am not looking to go as fast as I can and actually like having my legs burn from resistance. I used to ride stationary's on the highest resistance they could go for hours, the added "weight" is of little consequence in my decision.

I am more than likely going to buy the 2013 Giant Roam 2, I have been waiting for the shop to have one sent over from their other store so I can test ride it but I am sure I will like it. As long as the price is what they said it will be on the day I can buy it.

Last edited by diesel44; 01-17-13 at 11:15 PM.
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Old 01-20-13, 12:29 AM   #12
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I bought the 2013 giant roam 2, took it for alittle spin, 20degrees out so nothing crazy, love it so far, definetly need a different seat though
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Old 01-20-13, 12:51 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by diesel44 View Post
I bought the 2013 giant roam 2, took it for alittle spin, 20degrees out so nothing crazy, love it so far, definetly need a different seat though
Glad you like the bike, Giant makes great bikes.
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Old 01-21-13, 04:27 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by diesel44 View Post
I bought the 2013 giant roam 2, took it for alittle spin, 20degrees out so nothing crazy, love it so far, definetly need a different seat though
Nice bike! I am curious if there was something that made you decide on the Giant or was it just the "feel"?
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Old 01-24-13, 02:04 AM   #15
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First off, I liked the price better.. the feel to me was very similar, maybe if I had 1000 or so miles under my belt I'd be able to tell a difference but all I could think about what how the seat needs to go on both of them. I liked the giant was cheaper, a newer model and also had hydraulic disc breaks... Similar feature wise 2013 bikes are going for 2-300$ more and I think that says a lot about the giant brand in general. Finally, I like the look of the bike a lot more also. The thicker tubes. I just bought a new seat, couple water bottles and holders, a mirror, and looking into a speedmeter w cadence, the tommyca bike radio, and some kind of rear rack system.
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Old 01-27-13, 01:36 PM   #16
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Hey CabinDweller - sent you a pm about the Deore change you made. Love to hear about it as I'm continually told it's a lot more work than I think...
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