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Old 04-10-14, 01:00 AM   #1
thenickmove
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New to cycling, looking for buying advice

Hi!

So, first a little bit of background. I'm a Dutch biologist living in Finland. For my work, every year I have to go to a remote field site in order to do fieldwork for about 3-4 months (so I don't live at home during this time). This year I decided I need some more movement during that time, so I was planning on buying a bike.

The roads there are generally flat, but they're not always in the best condition (some cracks etc.), but not really offroad.
Afterwards, I would like to take this bike back to Helsinki in order to use it as well, be it commuting or visiting people.

I read a lot, and many people seem to be a fan of cyclocross bikes, but to be honest, they're just too expensive for me at the moment. Not because I can't pay it, but more because I don't know if I will use it enough to warrent the price.

I went to the local bikeshop, and they recommended me this one:
Trekking Master Pro | Nishiki bicycles
Which I found to be pretty expensive as well (1000e)

Some people in Finland recommended me Evan's cycles, so I checked there, and found these:
Jamis Allegro Comp Disc 2014 Hybrid Bike | Evans Cycles
Ridgeback Advance 3.0 2013 Hybrid Bike | Evans Cycles

Which fall within the price-range I was thinking about (although for both I would buy a rack, kickstand and mudguard).
According to someone I asked, that Jamis bike is less of a hybrid and more of a road bike, which I am not looking for. I am a reasonably heavy 1.94 guy that tends to break things, so I want a sturdy bike.

Do you think any of these bikes are a good choice (even the more expensive Nishiki one?)

Thanks a lot for your time!

Nick
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Old 04-10-14, 01:18 AM   #2
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For rough roads, with a heavier physique, I would also look at a Jamis Coda. Have you tried riding any at a local bike shop? You might find one bike that you like above all others, at which point you have your answer
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Old 04-10-14, 01:28 AM   #3
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For rough roads, with a heavier physique, I would also look at a Jamis Coda. Have you tried riding any at a local bike shop? You might find one bike that you like above all others, at which point you have your answer
Thanks for the fast reply. Unfortunately none of the coda's at Evan's are available for my length
I haven't really tried out a bike yet in the shop, mostly because bikes in Finland are a lot (a lot) more expensive than in other countries (that's the reason I'm looking at Evan's cycles).
I would feel bad and guilty if I was trying out bikes in a shop and then ordering it somewhere else.

Do you think that Nishiki would be worth trying? It's really really hard to find ANY information about that brand on the web (other than like models from the 80's)
Thanks again!
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Old 04-10-14, 09:38 AM   #4
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Get a 29er mountain bike and get narrower 700x40 tires on it. Should be perfect for your needs.
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Old 04-10-14, 10:12 AM   #5
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KonaRider has a really great idea!

Get the Jamis Trail X2 mtb, if a 29'er is beyond your budget. It's not a 29er, but it will serve your needs quite well once properly fitted. If you can afford the Trail X3, that would be even better!

Last edited by WestPablo; 04-10-14 at 10:17 AM.
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Old 04-10-14, 10:35 AM   #6
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Thanks for the fast reply. Unfortunately none of the coda's at Evan's are available for my length
I haven't really tried out a bike yet in the shop, mostly because bikes in Finland are a lot (a lot) more expensive than in other countries (that's the reason I'm looking at Evan's cycles).
I would feel bad and guilty if I was trying out bikes in a shop and then ordering it somewhere else.

Do you think that Nishiki would be worth trying? It's really really hard to find ANY information about that brand on the web (other than like models from the 80's)
Thanks again!
I suggest going to a bike shop anyway - sometimes they have discounts on older models which can bring prices down quite a bit. About the Nishiki, I'm very far from an expert, but everything I've read suggests that aluminium/alloy forks make for a harsh ride.
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Old 04-10-14, 10:42 AM   #7
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A trekking bike is probably your best bet given your needs and budget. I would not be worried about an aluminum frame particularly given the conditions it is going to be exposed to and the fat tires it will have. If the bike shop likes the bike (and you trust them), it rides good, and the price is right, I'd buy it.
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Old 04-10-14, 11:13 AM   #8
thenickmove
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Thanks a lot for the replies!

I immediately checked those mountainbikes, but again nothing in my size. I can check at my bikeshop in the weekend, but it's an extremely small shop (friendly people though).
If I decide to go with online, what do you think about the Ridgeback or Jamis I linked? Those are two that are available in my size.

Thanks again for your time!
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Old 04-10-14, 11:21 AM   #9
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Thanks a lot for the replies!

I immediately checked those mountainbikes, but again nothing in my size. I can check at my bikeshop in the weekend, but it's an extremely small shop (friendly people though).
If I decide to go with online, what do you think about the Ridgeback or Jamis I linked? Those are two that are available in my size.

Thanks again for your time!
I think that the Nishiki is your absolute best bet, but the Jamis is your second best bet of the three choices given.
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Old 04-10-14, 11:35 AM   #10
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I dunno - that Nishiki costs $2000. I don't understand why it is so expensive. Do hydraulic disc brakes cost that much? Does the OP even need hydraulic disc brakes?
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Old 04-10-14, 11:50 AM   #11
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I dunno - that Nishiki costs $2000. I don't understand why it is so expensive. Do hydraulic disc brakes cost that much? Does the OP even need hydraulic disc brakes?
+1

Yep! I agree...

That Nishiki is definitely overpriced!

Last edited by WestPablo; 04-11-14 at 08:36 AM.
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Old 04-11-14, 06:41 AM   #12
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I think I might have found a nice one. The reviews are favourable and the price is pretty low. It seems to have broad tires as well, and most importantly...it's in my size!

Specialized Crosstrail 2014 Hybrid Bike | Evans Cycles

Sorry for asking you people again...but...what do you think?
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Old 04-11-14, 07:32 AM   #13
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Excellent bike!

Only difference between that and a true (by today's definition) "hybrid" is the front shock. However, the shock can lockout on those so you can use it if you get the worst of roads & lock it when the road is smooth.

But, definitely a great choice of a bike. If you think you could do without the shock & just go solid forks, then the "Sirrus" would be the equivalent without the shock. Either way, excellent bike!

Evan's selection of Sirrus series ------> Evans Cycles | Mountain Bike | Specialized Bikes | UK Online Bike Shop
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Old 04-11-14, 07:48 AM   #14
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Excellent bike!

Only difference between that and a true (by today's definition) "hybrid" is the front shock. However, the shock can lockout on those so you can use it if you get the worst of roads & lock it when the road is smooth.

But, definitely a great choice of a bike. If you think you could do without the shock & just go solid forks, then the "Sirrus" would be the equivalent without the shock. Either way, excellent bike!

Evan's selection of Sirrus series ------> Evans Cycles | Mountain Bike | Specialized Bikes | UK Online Bike Shop
Thanks a lot!
Many of the Sirrus are not in my size (damn me!), but I'll check some more!

Probably a really naive and stupid question: What's the 'problem' of having shock-thingies? Isn't that nice to have even on flat roads?

Cheers!
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Old 04-11-14, 08:49 AM   #15
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Thanks a lot!
Many of the Sirrus are not in my size (damn me!), but I'll check some more!

Probably a really naive and stupid question: What's the 'problem' of having shock-thingies? Isn't that nice to have even on flat roads?

Cheers!
IMHO, suspended forks bring more weight and more moving parts. More moving parts mean more things that can fail. More parts also means more weight. More weight means more energy to push the bike along. That's why we don't see suspended forks on racing road bikes.

Additionally, quality suspended forks in many cases can cost nearly as much as the average cost of a commuter bicycle. Usually, only mediocre suspended forks are found on most mid-level hybrids and mtnbikes.

Pros
Cushions road interference
Helps to stabilize bike thru road irregularities

Cons
Requires more energy to move
Needs more frequent maintenance
Most low to mid-level ones are cheap
Adds weight to bike
Slower than bikes without them
Good suspended forks are expensive
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Old 04-11-14, 09:55 AM   #16
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That Crosstrai l is a nice bike, and the shocks work well for when you want them. Don't be afraid of the "trekking" suspension. It works.
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Old 04-11-14, 11:46 AM   #17
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People tout brands they can find where they live, without regard for the OP and what they have in their favorite bike shop

so it is rather theoretical then ..

Nishiki used to be a US importers brand .. IDK who owns the name now ..

drop by a few bike shops and 1st pick the shop you like , then a bike from that shop.

what brands are sold in the shops in Finland ? where you are .. you mentioned one .
Helsinki , the capitol city, would have more shops , maybe traveling there would allow a wider selection.

AFAIK a UK import , as FN is in the EU will still have 20% VAT attached to the price , if in Norway it would not.


the retail end , the person assembling the bike in the shop , and their job as performed,

is unknowable from an international online chat.

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Old 04-12-14, 10:27 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by thenickmove View Post
I think I might have found a nice one. The reviews are favourable and the price is pretty low. It seems to have broad tires as well, and most importantly...it's in my size!

Specialized Crosstrail 2014 Hybrid Bike | Evans Cycles

Sorry for asking you people again...but...what do you think?
I have a 2014 Specialized Crosstrail Disc as my primary bike and absolutely love it. The tires are rated for a fairly high pressure which really reduces the rolling resistance on road, while their slightly wider (compared to road tires) width allows me to ride some easy to moderate trails with my kids on their mountain bikes. I put a rear rack on mine to allow me to carry a moderate size bag. I also changed out the seat to a slightly more forgiving one with a bit more width as I'm a fairly big guy too.

All-in-all, you get a lot of bike for your money here and I have zero regrets with my purchase.
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Old 04-12-14, 03:34 PM   #19
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Cheers Nick and welcome to BF.

Nishiki as a brand is very popular around here for at least a decade now - of course, it's not "the" Nishiki of past many people in BF think about when they hear the name. They make solid hybrids nowadays - I'm not into road cycling, so no experience with those models. I have their entry level CX bike and I'm happy with it, but then I have no experience on other CX bikes either. I have ridden - commuted and toured - two Nishiki hybrids to ground (both retired due to crash related frame alignment problems). The Nishiki OP quoted is not terribly out of price range locally.

OP, you don't necessarily have to aim so high in the model range (but if you want to, that's OK of course). For one, disk brakes are nice, but not a must. Also I wouldn't buy any kind of suspension, if possible. Most any entry level hybrid available at LBS (but not at market chain) could probably be equipped to suit your needs, provided you can get a comfortable riding position. The only way to verify comfort is to test ride. One brand available here and not mentioned yet is Kona, would be worth checking what models they have available here right now.

You can also hope to be able to adjust things (saddle, grips, handlebar etc) enough so that you can buy from a web shop. Evans is reliable, another you might check out is Roseversand.de. I have no affiliation with either but have bought parts and gear from both, with good results. Rose have their own bike brand and have decent variety in their hybrid/trekking models.

--J
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Last edited by Juha; 04-12-14 at 03:44 PM.
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