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Old 01-27-03, 11:52 AM   #1
Rats13
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Thinking of buying a Hybrid. Any tips or thoughts

My wife is going to buy me a new bicycle for a (albeit late) Christmas present.

I want the bike mainly for excercise on the weekends. I live in the South Bay area of Los Angeles and will using it to ride at the beach, around town and in Palos Verdes (I hope).

I was considering a MTB because I'm a fairly big guy 6'1" 220 and I know I'll probably go up and down curbs etc. But since although I would like to try some mountain riding realistically I won't be doing much of that more than dirt road etc I am considering a hybrid bike because of it's sturdy MTB bike type frame, riding style and yet mid thickness tires.

Specifically I am considering the Trek 7500 or 7300. Will those bikes handle up and down curbs and an occasionaly dirt road or trail?

I am not experienced biker other than the tons of commuting miles I put on my Schwinn cruiser during high school and college.

The only other option I am thinking of is getting a Mountain bike and making it street ready.

What do you think?

Thanks
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Old 01-27-03, 01:05 PM   #2
Garlic
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Your wife is buying you a bike? Does she have a sister? Seriously, the Treks are great bikes. If you can control the urge to jump alot of curbs or do any challenging off roading, then the hybrid is the way to go. I am also a bigger guy and find that a hybrid is perfect for my commuting and pedaling around needs. If you haven't bought a bike in a while, make sure you get fitted for your bike. Your body will thank you. Good luck.
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Old 01-27-03, 02:40 PM   #3
Leo C. Driscoll
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Check out a 21-inch Marin San Anselmo. I've been safely and happily commuting on this beast for several months. Also consider a Brooks Champion Flyer saddle (with a Carradice cover to protect the leather in wet weather) (www.wallbike.com) and a Cane Creek suspension seat post. Finally, look at the Big Masher platform pedal from Nashbar. Stock tires on the San Anselmo are WTB Terrainsaurus. I may look into other WTB tires if we get some heavy snow in Boston. Another feature of this big hybrid- San Anselmo (who is an 11th Century Italian mountain biker turned logician in England) will look after you!

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Old 01-27-03, 04:37 PM   #4
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I ride a Peugeot hybrid with 700-28 Armadillo tires, which are fine for hard packed crushed stone trails. These are puncture proof but very heavy. The Panaracer Paselas are much lighter so will be easier to accelerate and give more responsive handling. My bike has deep section rims which are very strong. Hopping up curbs should be no problem, provided you hop them and dont just ride straight into them. I weigh 235 lb.

Some hybrids are rather short from seat to bars, which gives you a riding position that is too upright. You can compensate for this by fitting a longer stem.

Get bar-ends so you have a choice of hand positions. I have my bar-ends set low so they give me a position close to riding on the hoods of drop bars.
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Old 01-28-03, 10:39 AM   #5
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I have a real nice cannondale silkpath 700 hybrid for sale.Less than 5000 mile,$600 BUCKS and it has some nice upgrades.
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Old 01-28-03, 11:16 AM   #6
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Rats, I am exactly your height and wieght. I bought a Diamondback wildwood men's comfort bike and it is great. I know some of the guys here might laugh at a bike like mine, but it works for me. It is a little heavy, but the do make an aluminum version of it. I have problems with my back, so I really appreciate the upright riding posture it allows me. I use it for commuting, sometimes 20 miles round trip and have no problems. They don't cost a whole lot, so you might take a look at one at your LBS
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Old 01-28-03, 10:40 PM   #7
Waldo
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If your leanings are a bit more towards the mtb end of the spectrum than the hybrid, a comfort bike could be a good choice for you. In particular, Diamondback and Specialized models tend to be more oriented towards the mtb end in terms of geometry and feel. They're definitely not as upright as others, and that can all be changed with the adjustable stem/riser bar combo you'll find on any of these bikes. For my money, the Specialized Expedition series can't be beat.
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Old 01-30-03, 02:05 PM   #8
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i got the trek 7300 a few months ago for my bday. i've put on about 400 miles. all new york city miles, and lots of curbs. i know this is still a relatively new bike, but haven't had to get any wheel truings yet. i don't exactly try to avoid most curbs either. i ride it hard with the philosophy that if it can't handle curbs and falls apart, then i don't want it anyway. yes i broke a lot of toys as a kid.

some minor negative points:

- the treads on the bontrager select invert tires seem perfectly designed to pick up little pieces of broken car window (big problem here in nyc)
-as soon as i figure out what kind of seat i want, i'm replacing the one it comes with
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Old 01-30-03, 03:19 PM   #9
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Second the notion you look into a Comfort bike, it's basically a mtn bike for on-road use. Plus, you're positioned in a more upright position. You can get some as cheap as $300.00, for e.g. A Gary Fisher Capitola, retails for $289.00.

Decent bike, well made sturdy construction, suspension forks and seatpost!

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Old 01-30-03, 06:14 PM   #10
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as soon as i figure out what kind of seat i want, i'm replacing the one it comes with
If you want a really comfortable seat, I'd suggest a Brooks B66.
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Old 01-31-03, 05:35 AM   #11
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Get the highest grade bike you can, in this budget end of the market, a few extra $$ buy you a lot of extra quality. Make sure it fits you well, esp in the reach from saddle to bars. You will need the advice of a good bike shop to get this right.
Replace the tyres with some high grade, kevlar-belted ones at the shop. You should just have to pay the price difference, and upgraded rubber is the cheapest and most effective way of improving performance and reducing punctures. Most hybrid tyres are too fat and knobbly for efficient road riding. A lightly treaded ones of 28-32mm will be much easier to pedal and can handle off-road trails with no problems.
Most hybrid saddles are way too soft and squishy. Harder saddles offer better support and are more comfortable, they just dont sell as well to newbies. Suspension seat-posts can develope a wobble after regular use, I wouldnt recomend them. I would second Alex's suggestion of the sprung Brooks saddle. This will smoothe out the bumps, and is a comfortable well proven design.
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