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  1. #1
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    I need a little help here on some bike recommendations

    First let me start by saying I hope this is the right forum to ask this. I wasn't sure but this seemed to be as close to what I'm looking at as I could find. I really haven't ridden a bike much in the last 10+ years, but earlier this year I was diagnosed with pretty bad osteoarthritis in both knees I had some surgery to help but the Dr. informed me that if I wanted to put off knee replacement as long as possible then I need to BIKE, BIKE and BIKE some more. I have been ridding the mountain bike that my wife bought for me 15+ years ago and while it seems to be a decent bike a Schwinn Frontier with that said it is heavier than I want and I'm mostly ridding on paved roads not trails. Additionally I have found the seating position of the bike being bent forward seems to be hurting my wrists, I find that if I ride for more than 45 min my wrists start to hurt and I get a numbness in my hand, Dr. said more than likely I'm pinching a nerve.

    So now that I have given you my life story here's the real reason for me coming here. I have been considering getting a bike that will allow me to sit more upright and relieve the problem with my wrists I would also like something more gear towards road biking than off road and perhaps a little lighter than my Schwinn. I have visited about 4 local bike shops to try and get an idea on what I should purchase but I'm now more confused than ever. Several stores tried to steer we towards a comfort bike which isn't really what I'm looking for as I really want to exercise my knees but in addition I would like to loose some weight and get a cardio workout as well.

    I think I have narrowed it down to the following makes and models,

    1.) Trex FX
    2.) Trex Verve
    3.) Cannondale Adventure 1 or 2
    4.) Raleigh Venture 4.0
    5.) Raleigh Cadent


    I'm not looking to get into racing or anything but I would like a pretty decent bike to get back into shape and more suited for the type of ridding I'm currently doing.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Good choices, all. But, add Specialized Sirrus in there too, and visit a Giant Dealer. You always seem to get more for your buck with Giant.

    Also, look at last years models. Componentry might be better, and the price will be better, as they want to clear them out.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


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  3. #3
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    Also on a side note one of the bike stores has tried to steer me towards a 3G bike.

    http://www.3gbikes.com/bikes/citybike/

    http://www.3gbikes.com/bikes/cruiser...ensvenice7spd/

    http://www.3gbikes.com/bikes/cruiser...wportsdlx3spd/

    They seem nice but I've never heard of them nor do they really seem to fit a category. Any opinions on these or do you think the shop is just trying to push something they have in inventory?

  4. #4
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    from your choices I'd prefer the Cadent. I'm not a fan of front suspension on a hybrid myself which is what most of the other choices have. Like Wanderer said the specialized Sirrus is nice as well. I own a Sirrus which is nearly identical to the Cadent and love it. Good Luck!

  5. #5
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    +1 to what Wanderer stated above. If there is a Giant dealer near you, do yourself a favor and visit it. Since Giant makes the frame for many others and in some case even the entire bike, Giant products seem to be a better buy for the buck. In my case last Jan my wife and I purchased a couple of Escape RX0s. They currently have over 8,000 miles on them and have been perfect. You can read about them in my thread at http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...nt-Escape-RX-0. BTW my wife has about the same story you do. It's been 7 years since her surgery (no knee replacement yet) but her doc said biking and swimming were the best. Since that time we have been riding almost every day (the retired life in North Central Florida) and her knees haven't gotten any worse. The pain is much less as well. So in her case the Doctor's orders proved successful. Good luck with what ever bike you buy.
    Last edited by DowneasTTer; 12-18-13 at 10:45 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member cbr9927's Avatar
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    I recently purchared a 13 Crosstrail Elite Disc and Giant offers pretty much the same thing for about 200 dollars less. I would have gone with the Giant except I ran my local LBS thru a couple of returns and hey I don't want to screw them like that by returning bikes and just going with another LBS to get the Giant. . What goes arounds comes around. Ok, story is check out Giant as others say, best bang for buck.

  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Exact bike brand/ model aside, given all 5 are decent ..

    If you work with the dealer , they will tailor the bike to fit your requirements,

    that may include substituting the stock fork with one which has the steerer tube un cut,
    (it's precut in the factory for the frame size)

    and replacing the cables to reach the new height.. or adding an aftermarket stem raiser ,
    or just changing the stem.

    A good shop [unlike a Box store] can alter the bikes they get, to suit the individual rider's needs.

    Ditto seat and pedals and handlebars, grips and all that.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-18-13 at 11:25 AM.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for all the replies, I was asking about the Raleigh & 3G as I really like the two guys that run the shop. I'll check out the Giant and Specialized as well.

  9. #9
    Junior Member Dustygirl01's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear about your knees. I have o.a. behind my one kneecap. It's not fun. The first couple of times I rode, my knee really swelled up, and I was only going about 3 miles on a rail trail. I guess the new activity threw it for a curve, but my knee eventually adjusted and doesn't give me any issues, even riding over 20 miles. I also have a bad wrist...chronic tendinitis from repetitive motion damage. I had to just keep adjusting my handlebars until I hit the best position. I found really comfortable grips made a big difference, too.

  10. #10
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Which Cadent are you looking at? There are lots.................. Raleigh is a reputable manufacturer, and make good bikes.

    Of the Cadents, I like the 3 the best (I'm a big fan of 9 spd, and don't like twist shifters) The 3 resolves that problem nicely...............couldn't find prices on their website though! The Raleigh website leaves a little to be desired.

    Lots of Shimano parts on the 3, which is good. I love Schwalbe tires, I happen to like the stiffness of aluminum frames, and the carbon fork will help smooth out the ride. 9 spd parts are relatively inexpensive, and still give you lots of gear choices. I also like triples on the front , for the same reason, lots of choices.

    If you like that shop, that's half the battle. The other half is buying the bike you fall in love with.

    Will the Cadent have enough clearance for fenders and racks? Mounting points, too? Speaking of clearance, is there enough there if you want to install wider tires? Not a deal breaker, but choices are always good wen you are in the market for new stuff.

    How big are you? Do you need a 36 spoke rear wheel - new is the time to get that, if you need it.
    Last edited by Wanderer; 12-18-13 at 02:48 PM.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


    Specialized Crosstrail Sport - '08
    Nishiki Sport - misappropriated from my youngest son (circa 1984)
    Marin Stinson - misappropriated by my youngest grandson - '01
    "The Beast" - 1990 Schwinn Airdyne (in the basement for winter torture)

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    Which Cadent are you looking at? There are lots.................. Raleigh is a reputable manufacturer, and make good bikes.

    Of the Cadents, I like the 3 the best (I'm a big fan of 9 spd, and don't like twist shifters) The 3 resolves that problem nicely...............couldn't find prices on their website though! The Raleigh website leaves a little to be desired.

    How big are you? Do you need a 36 spoke rear wheel - new is the time to get that, if you need it.
    I'm not sure which one as when I went down to the shop that carries the Raleigh's they were steering me towards the Cannondales which I wasn't a huge fan of as they all seemed to have a shock system on the front forks and I really can't see adding the extra weight and something else to go wrong on a street bike. I'll have to go back down and take a look. May I ask why you prefer the 9 speed over something with more speeds? I think my Schwinn is 21 speeds but I'll be honest I normally don't use them all.

    As for the rear wheel I really have no idea I'm 5'9" 220 lbs so I don't know if that helps.

    It looks like I'm going to really learn more than I ever imagined about bikes I never realized there was so much info and options to consider.

    Thanks agian.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dustygirl01 View Post
    Sorry to hear about your knees. I have o.a. behind my one kneecap. It's not fun. The first couple of times I rode, my knee really swelled up, and I was only going about 3 miles on a rail trail. I guess the new activity threw it for a curve, but my knee eventually adjusted and doesn't give me any issues, even riding over 20 miles. I also have a bad wrist...chronic tendinitis from repetitive motion damage. I had to just keep adjusting my handlebars until I hit the best position. I found really comfortable grips made a big difference, too.
    It's no fun I really didn't know how bad it was until I did something one day to one of them it got better but then one day I went running back up the stairs, something popped and I was lying at the top of the stairs on the floor making up swearwords for about 20 mins and it was down hill from that day on. I went and had the arthroscopic surgery on both knees to repair a torn miniscus as well as clean them out and it was at that point the Dr. told me how bad it was and that I really needed to ride a bike and loose some weight unless I wanted to have knee replacements in the next few years. He said with biking and weight loss I could put it off for 10 + years so that's my goal right now.

    I did adjust my current bars up a little and that seemed to help the wrist issue but I still think I may be a little passed the old mountain bike. LOL

  13. #13
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    If you start looking at crank forward bikes . like the 3G you linked .. also consider Trek Pure,
    and further consider a rear wheel upgrade to a dual drive Hub ..

    By doing that the 8 speed cassette will drive a 3 Speed internal gear so its like a triple crank

    but will down shift at a stop, so your chosen gear on the cassette would be quickly returned to at stoplights ..
    once you get going again

  14. #14
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    That 9 spd, with a triple, is actually 27 speeds. 9 spd stuff is lots cheaper to maintain, and replace parts, than the 10 or 11.

    with your bad knees, and I know them well, you will want to learn better pedalling technique. Make power with easy speed, instead of muscle. It will help a whole lot, so learn to use them all.

    at your weight, I would want a 36spoke rear, so I can forget about wheel failure. I am similar, and yes I do.
    Last edited by Wanderer; 12-18-13 at 08:51 PM.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


    Specialized Crosstrail Sport - '08
    Nishiki Sport - misappropriated from my youngest son (circa 1984)
    Marin Stinson - misappropriated by my youngest grandson - '01
    "The Beast" - 1990 Schwinn Airdyne (in the basement for winter torture)

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    If you start looking at crank forward bikes . like the 3G you linked .. also consider Trek Pure,
    and further consider a rear wheel upgrade to a dual drive Hub ..

    By doing that the 8 speed cassette will drive a 3 Speed internal gear so its like a triple crank

    but will down shift at a stop, so your chosen gear on the cassette would be quickly returned to at stoplights ..
    once you get going again
    What is a duel drive hub? I fairly new to this? Also is there anything good bad or otherwise about the crank forward I just looked again and I can see that the crank on the 3G's are forward of the others does this make any real difference or do I want this?

    Thanks.

  16. #16
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    If you are going to do a lot of riding, and to save your knees, you will - you don't want crank forward bikes. They are a lot of work for other than very short distances. MHO

    Again, MHO, you want a bike more like the Cadent, which can be a good all around bike - for short and long, pleasure and utility.

    What area are you in? You might need fenders (very easy to add later) to make riding better, and keep he bike cleaner. A rear rack, and a set of grocery panniers are amazingly functional, and fold flat when not in use.

    Ride first, the make it functional later................ you will like it.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


    Specialized Crosstrail Sport - '08
    Nishiki Sport - misappropriated from my youngest son (circa 1984)
    Marin Stinson - misappropriated by my youngest grandson - '01
    "The Beast" - 1990 Schwinn Airdyne (in the basement for winter torture)

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    That 9 spd, with a triple, is actually 27 speeds. 9 spd stuff is lots cheaper to maintain, and replace parts, than the 10 or 11.

    with your bad knees, and I know them well, you will want to learn better pedalling technique. Make power with easy speed, instead of muscle. It will help a whole lot, so learn to use them all.

    at your weight, I would want a 36spoke rear, so I can forget about wheel failure. I am similar, and yes I do.
    OK I see now I think, so does this mean if a bike is listed as a 9 speed or 3 speed then it may actually be more with the 3 gears on the crank (sorry for all the questions it's been years since I rode or bought a bike)? Yea I noticed I'm not longer trying nor am I really able to "POWER" through a ride like I used to in my younger years.

    Also as someone mentioned in a couple posts up one of the brands the bike shop was steering me towards was a 3G which evidently has a crank forward do you have any opinions on this being in a similar situation as me? One of the owners steered me towards the 3G after I mentioned my knee problems to him he said it would be easier and put less strain on my knees. I did take it for a test ride and it seemed decent but not sure if this would be a good option or not.

    Thanks again for all your help as well as everyone else who responded. It helping me out to try and make a more informed and wise decision.
    Last edited by Snookingfury; 12-19-13 at 06:18 AM. Reason: added text.

  18. #18
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    Great you just answered my question on the crank forwards so I'll cross those off my list. I'm in Southwest Florida, Naples to be exact.

  19. #19
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    When they list the speeds, they are usually talking about the rear hub or gear cluster. When they talk about compact or triple, they are talking about the gears(sprockets) on the front. Compact is 2, Triple is 3. Therefore 3X9 = 27. Yes, there is a little overlap, but the right gear (the really right gear) makes pedaling effortless. The right gear at 20 MPH is easy, the wrong one is WORK. One is too fast for your comfort, one is just right. One is just right, the slow one is WORK.

    Get a computer/speedometer with cadence. Being able to actually see your pedaling speed makes it easier to improve your technique. You will probably start out at less than 45 RPM, about half of what you should be. Be comfortable always, but try to raise your RPM 5, every month. Some months you won't be able to, but that's OK - stay comfortable. Get to a minimum of 60-65, and try to get to 80 (or even higher if it's comfortable) over time. Always stay comfortable when pedaling, but you will find it more comfortable once you get to higher speeds, and less muscle work. Calories expended is the same ,but it's easier.

    You can make horsepower with speed, or brute force ----- speed is easier.

    Ahhhh, Naples, and riding year round, almost every day. And fenders will help keep your drivetrain cleaner and hep keep the grit off you, too.
    Last edited by Wanderer; 12-19-13 at 06:55 AM.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


    Specialized Crosstrail Sport - '08
    Nishiki Sport - misappropriated from my youngest son (circa 1984)
    Marin Stinson - misappropriated by my youngest grandson - '01
    "The Beast" - 1990 Schwinn Airdyne (in the basement for winter torture)

  20. #20
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    Ok well my hunt has just become a little more complicated, I happened to get into a conversation with someone the other day who recommended I consider either a good dual purpose bike (on road/ off road) or a mountain type bike for down here. He informed me that there a bunch of unpaved bike trails down near the Everglades many are grass/ dirt or gravel road with a few paved ones. He said in addition to getting some exercise I can expect to see a bunch of wild life in these areas as well as not riding around a bunch of cars & trucks. As a couple of the trails are near an area I go to on a semi regular basis I may be able to knock out two birds with one stone. So does would any of the bikes I mentioned still be OK of these types of conditioned or do I need to look at something else? He said during the summer wet season some of the grass type of trails become more of a swap so I would be skipping those then and I'm not trying to do any real off road biking but I figure it would be nice to get out and see something other than my neighborhood from time to time. I wouldn't be able to do these trails everyday so I would still be mostly doing the neighborhood around the area bike rides and then when I have some extra time I would love to hit some of these trails.

    Any ideas or suggestions??

    Thanks.

  21. #21
    Junior Member Dustygirl01's Avatar
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    Wow, that sounds like a lot of fun! I hope you find a bike that can do it all. I have a 2001 Mongoose Switchback which is a rail/trail bike. I love it, it's comfortable and I can take it anywhere. BUT...my boyfriend has an older Trek 7500 FX and I actually really love his bike. It's lighter than mine, has the slightly narrower tires and his bike can go everywhere that my bike goes, only better!
    Last edited by Dustygirl01; 12-22-13 at 10:45 AM.

  22. #22
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    The Cadent 3 would still be excellent for that kind of riding................. And, if they offer enough clearance, you can still fit wider tires next time. Like 35s or 37s, or 40s. Ck with the dealer about the clearance first. And, the added benefit of the Cadent 3, is it's more road, paved trail, fine gravel trail, friendly. You don't need a mountain bike for that kind of riding. The 700c bike will be fine.

    Butttttttt, now you would really benefit by adding fenders, a rack, and some kind of panniers and/or tail trunk. Don't forget bottle cages, and water bottles, either. Fenders really do keep you, and the bike, much cleaner. You will also need some kind of mud flap on the front one. If you want wider tires next time, take that into consideration now, if you install fenders.

    I really like the functional invisibility of grocery panniers, (from Nashbar or Performance) as they fold flat, out of the way, when not in use, but can carry a huge amount of stuff when you want to.

    You will also want a set of bar ends for more hand positions. Cheap, and easy to install.

    Most dealers install this added stuff labor free, if bought when the bike is being delivered. It's worth while to ask. My dealer offers 25% off MSRP, and free installation on anything added while buying the bike.

    Or, look at stuff like the Misceo Trail http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes-road...sceo-trail-2-0 Talk to your dealer of choice - they probably have other stuff (bikes included)you want/need.

    Finding the dealer you want to do business with is 60% of the battle - after that, everything is easy.
    Last edited by Wanderer; 12-22-13 at 11:47 AM.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


    Specialized Crosstrail Sport - '08
    Nishiki Sport - misappropriated from my youngest son (circa 1984)
    Marin Stinson - misappropriated by my youngest grandson - '01
    "The Beast" - 1990 Schwinn Airdyne (in the basement for winter torture)

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snookingfury View Post
    Any ideas or suggestions??

    Thanks.
    Well I would look for a hybrid based on a MTN platform with 700 28 or higher tires. The 28s being the thinest for your conditions. Also might want one with front suspension (but with a lock out). Now mind you wet organic material is the worst type of surface to cover without the risk on picking oneself up from the ground no matter want sided tires or frame combination. I'm lucky in that I have a pure MTN bike for conditions like that and use my hybrid for all others. If you stay on the Shark Valley loop you would get to see most of the wildlife. But, I understand the wanting the path less traveled. Maybe it's time to look at buying a used MTN off Craig's list for those times and get a hybrid for the other stuff. Don't forget the 1st major rule of bike ownership…. one is NEVER enough. You should always have at least N+1. Good luck with what ever you decide you can never go wrong on two wheels…. well

  24. #24
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    I spent a ton of time over the past week researching bikes, and trying to figure out what to buy myself. I ended up going with the Specialized Sirrus Elite but until the very end was close to buying a Specialized Crossroads Sport because of the slightly larger tire and front lockout suspension fork. Ultimately I went with the Sirrus because 95%+ of the trails near me are maved but I feel I would have been incredibly happy with both! Do yourself a favor and look into what Specialized has to offer, you won't be disappointed!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DowneasTTer View Post
    Well I would look for a hybrid based on a MTN platform with 700 28 or higher tires. The 28s being the thinest for your conditions. Also might want one with front suspension (but with a lock out). Now mind you wet organic material is the worst type of surface to cover without the risk on picking oneself up from the ground no matter want sided tires or frame combination. I'm lucky in that I have a pure MTN bike for conditions like that and use my hybrid for all others. If you stay on the Shark Valley loop you would get to see most of the wildlife. But, I understand the wanting the path less traveled. Maybe it's time to look at buying a used MTN off Craig's list for those times and get a hybrid for the other stuff. Don't forget the 1st major rule of bike ownership…. one is NEVER enough. You should always have at least N+1. Good luck with what ever you decide you can never go wrong on two wheels…. well
    I may have to do that I currently have a Schwinn mountain bike so I may have to try a couple of these trails and see if I'm really up for them given my knee issues before getting something else new.

    Thanks for the reply.

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