Join Date: Sep 2010
Bikes: Raleigh Mountain 200.....Giant Escape 0
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As a person who just went through the process of comparing bikes and then buying one, the follow may help you:
1. Go ride as many of the bikes on your list and some that are not on the list. Actually riding the bikes will naccessoriesp you sort things out. Once you get your list down to a few, go ride your favorites again. The second riding can be just as revealing as the first as you refine your search.
You won't always find the exact model you are interested in, or the exact size, and the bike you test ride may not be adjusted to fit you correctly. Also, some bikes may ride better than others due to road surface, wind, traffic condition, and how you are feeling that day. But despite all this, test riding the bikes is still the best way to determine the best bike for you.
2. A good bike shop can be of tremendous value in helping you decide. A good shop will encourage you to ride different bikes in different sizes and they will make adjustments to that bike to make them more comfortable. If the person you are talking with at the bike shop is BSing more than feeding you helpful information, move on and find someone else to help you
In my own case, I had my choices down to a Trek 7.4 FX and a Giant Escape 0. I selected the Escape due to a little better fit and the service I received at the Giant dealer. Where the Trek dealer offered 10% off of bike accessories at the time of purchase, one free adjustment, and was firm on the bike's price.......the Giant dealer offered 10% off of bike merchandise for a year, free lifetime adjustments, and came off the bikes price by 10%.