Hello all! This is my first post to the forums, but I've been lurking around the past few days trying to get a better idea and feel for the site. At the risk of sounding like a complete idiot, I figured I might as well throw out some questions to see what insight you all can bestow upon me.
I have been considering joining Team In Training to prepare for a Century Ride for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society,but am hesitant as to what I am possibly getting myself into. I'm in good physical shape, and with the ride being in October, I feel I have plenty of time to get into shape for the ride, but I have absolutely no clue as to how much this charity ride could end up costing me financially. With that being said, anyone have recommendations for a good cheap road bike (or hybrid??) that I should keep my eyes out for? Or is it just too much to try and find one for under $300? I really would like to do the ride as it will be personal to me, but cannot commit a lot of money to it. I'm all for getting a cheap bike and over time putting money into it and learning the tricks of the trade to try and tune it properly, but at present I can't put forth the money.
So enough rambling, is this a possibility? I have been searching for quite some time for cheap bikes, but it is like looking at a foreign language. I don't know if a $200 bike from Wal Mart would spell my doom or if it could be a great starting point. Any guidance or direction will be greatly appreciated and I truly appreciate anything you all can offer in terms of advice. Just point me in the right direction!
Between Crystal River and Hernando, Florida, 6 miles west of the Withlacoochee Trail
I've had several since 1999 but have settled on my beloved 2001 Litespeed Tuscany and my latest, a 2013 Cannondale CAAD 10.
Welcome to BikeForums.
Have you looked into the TnT financial requirements? I've considered doing this ride in the past but never followed through because I didn't want to be stuck having to pay whatever part I couldn't raise to meet the minimum entry ($2500 I believe).
Keep looking for another bike. You'll be very sorry with a Walmart bike and finding a decent $300 used bike, that may or may not fit you, isn't going to be easy. Is $300 your absolute limit?
Anyway, ask away in the General Cycling forum. A lot more people read posts there and you'll get some good suggestions.
Appreciate the advice Ron! $300 isn't my absolute limit, but I was hoping it would be a good starting point to then upgrade the bike with different components as I progressed and got a feel for riding. I am aware of the limits, but I feel like with 5 months or so I should be able to raise the funds for the charity. (I hope at least!!) I had checked out bikesdirect and saw some in there, but I really have no idea on brands, quality, or anything. This is all really knew to me and in exploring the possible ride figured I should go out and see what advice is out there from people who can be genuine and not feed me some lines to get me to buy this bike or that. I'm a member on a golf forum and so I know these places are just filled with knowledge!! Thanks a lot for your time and I'll check out the general forums now! Again, thanks!!
Hi there! Welcome to bikeforums. I can tell you that you have come to the RIGHT place for the kind of info that you seeking. When I decided to buy a bike, I had no idea what to look for. Like you, I was initially considering a bike from Walmart, but learnt from this forum that it is a bad idea. Here is what I did to educate myself about bikes. I visited a few bike stores in my area and got some inputs about the type of bike that I should be looking at (performance/comfort hybrids or road bikes, etc), and also the price range or decent/good bikes. I cross-verified the suggestions/prices here at the forum. I also checked local listings for used bikes (for e.g. craiglist) to get an idea of the price range for the used ones.
My opinion is that if you do not have any experience with bikes (like me), then go with a new bike as opposed to a used one, since with a used one you always have the risk of fixing/upgrading parts. Of course if you know someone who is knowledgable about bikes and is willing to help you get a good used bike, then go for it. Otherwise making the investment is worth it.
Check out deals at REI, their "garage sales" have some gold if you can dig for it. I picked up an old 80s Fuji road racing bike from a rummage sale several years back for $30 and it served well in a trip from Boston to Philadelphia. But in general, do yourself a favor and stay away from Walmart...