I need some help deciding on a new bike. Here’s the story: I made a deal with my wife. If I can lose 53# and my Clydesdale status, she will buy me a new bike. I’m almost there and looking to save some $ by buying a closeout 2004 model. My limit is $1000 for a complete bike. I would like 105 as the minimum component group. My question is: do I buy a touring bike, road bike, cross bike? I’ve done quite a bit of touring in the past on a mountain bike. In fact, that is my “road” bike right now-an early 90s steel Fisher mtn bike with slicks. It is heavy, slow, and the perfect bike for losing weight. Do I keep it as my touring bike and buy a faster, lighter road bike? Or do I buy a decent touring bike and use it for all of my road riding? Will I notice the difference between a road bike and a bare touring bike, especially at my size? If it matters, I’ve never ridden a “real” road bike since I’ve been a mtn biker for 20 of my 42 years.
Secondly, can anyone recommend some models for me to check out? I think I would prefer steel, due to its durability and longevity. I plan on keeping the bike for a long time. I realize that fit will be a big part of the decision but I’m just looking to narrow the field a bit. The brands available locally are: Trek, Specialized, Lemond, KHS, Marin. I’d be willing to drive a bit if you have recommendations other than these brands. If anyone can point me to a source that breaks down bikes by steel, aluminum, etc., I would appreciate it.
Thanks for the help!