NCAA - DUAL CHAMPIONS!
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: From Sarasota, FL sitting in front of a computer spewing random thoughts!
Bikes: Intense Uzzi SL, Masi Speciale, Trek 3700 Nashbar Single Speed, Old Cilo Road frame
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I'm no lightweight either. For "Clydesdales" there are a few things to look for in bikes and some things to avoid.
Most frames will take the additional abuse of heavier riders without a problem. Frame materials really won't be an issue for strength as you're not "Sooo" heavy. Full Suspension will definately be more comfortable, but costs may prohibit you from getting the most for your money. Cheap Full Suspension bikes (under $850) aren't worth it. If you don't want to spend that much, get a hardtail.
The most significant thing you want is a strong wheelset. Avoid low count spokes like the plague. Stick with 32 or 36 spoke wheels. If you can swap out the wheels and get 36 spoke count, you'll be better off! If you can only get 32, I suggest try to swap the tires for a wider size, like 2.1 minimum or 2.25 is good. If you plan on doing any jumps, go even wider.
If you get a decent fork, you'll want to swap out the springs or the elastomers inside the fork for spring rates that are "XTRA STIFF" this will make a huge difference in the performance of the fork. Try to stay away from "Air" suspension, you'll find the action of a coil spring much better for a big person.
The rest is pretty much the same, remeber, XTR is top of the line, but in order to save weight, they remove material. The top level components I prefer is XT. I find most XTR stuff too fragile for the abuse I inflict. O.k., the XTR derailleurs work very well, but I don't see the need to spend the extra cash for anything else!
Everything else should be fine.
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "WOW, What a Ride!" - unknown
"Your Bike Sucks" - Sky Yaeger