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Old 06-05-14, 02:18 PM   #1
Gunga Dan
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Opinions on 2 bikes?

I've been looking into used & new bikes for a friend of mine. Got some great input here on "Used", but that route seems problematic, if nothing else, from a time standpoint, unless you're lucky. I'm considering these 2 new models:

Save Up to 60% Off Comfort Bikes - Dawes Eclipse 3.0
Save up to 60% off new Cafe Bikes | Hybrid Bikes Cafe Latte 2014

My friend is female, but will be buying a "men's" frame. Am I correct that there is really no point to a "ladies" frame, if the rider has no intention of biking in a hoop skirt??? I'm frankly surprised they even still make those drop frames. Impossible to get on the rack, if nothing else.

So, what are the thoughts on the relative merits of these 2 bikes? We are open to other possibilities as well, but need to keep the cost below $400.

TIA

Dan
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Old 06-06-14, 08:26 AM   #2
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I would suggest taking to a shop or two with good inventory (REI, Gregg's, Performance etc.) and have her tes ride a few bikes. Buring a first bike online is a bit of a crap shoot. A lot of these shops often have a few last year's models that you can get at a discount. REI is always having sales, I'm not sure if you get the 10% dividend on all bikes but most likely on their own Novarra line.

There is a difference in "women's" bikes. Women have different geometry needs for how the bikes are set up so a men's bike might not fit as well. Also the saddles will be different and the brake levers are typically shorter to accomodate smaller hands.
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Old 06-07-14, 09:33 AM   #3
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I would do the cafe latte of the two.

Cafe latte is more expensive, but in the event she gets into cycling it will last a little longer. The Dawes has lower end components (Suntour vs. Shimano). Also, the Dawes has front end suspension. It's not needed on a path and pavement bike and just makes the bike heavier and less efficient (some of the energy from you pedaling is absorbed by the shock and not being sent to the street).


For locally available options, i think it would be the difference between:
Schwinn Voyageur 2 Comfort Bike - 2014 - Hybrid Street Bikes (similar to the Dawes)
and
Fuji Absolute 2.1 Flat Bar Road Bike - 2013 - Fitness Bikes (similar to the Cafe Latte- but the Cafe Latte has a better drivetrain)
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Old 06-07-14, 11:09 AM   #4
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Bring them by the shop and I'll have a look ..

If you haven't figured it out by now, bikes direct = you are on your own .

they skip the minimum wage workers in Local small businesses of bike shops ..
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Old 06-07-14, 11:49 AM   #5
Gunga Dan
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Thanks for the replies. I'm fairly experienced with bikes, my friend is not, so a local shop may be best for her. We're leaning towards this one now Fuji Traverse 1.8 Sport Hybrid Bike - 2014 Performance Exclusive - Bikes & Frames ~$35 more with sales tax, but looks very nice. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-09-14, 10:21 AM   #6
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Have her ride it and see if she likes it.

I would second what j-law said about the front suspension, extra weight and energy loss if you are riding on pavement. Also something else that needs maintainance without any real benefit.

I would prefer a lighter bike without a suspension. Also I'd have her ride bikes with both flat bars and curved road bars. Curved road bars may seem more awkward at first but I think they are superior for riding on pavement, they give you many more options for placing your hands which is something you should take advantage of to avoid your hands going numb on longrr rides.
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Old 06-10-14, 11:37 PM   #7
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Gonna be hard to get a curved bar road bike at that price point.
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