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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 11-20-07, 08:14 PM   #1
AaronDavidson
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Cheap Winter Bike...Bikes Direct

I currently own one bike, my Jamis Trilogy. As the weather is getting crummier and crummier I feel the need for a second bike. I primarily race triathlons/dualthons. I am looking for something I can ride this winter when I am not on my trainer. Since my two LBS have nothing 'cheap' and there is nothing on criagslist, I have decided to buy something from BikesDirect.

I am considering the following:
http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...m_cross_cx.htm $499
So that I can do some light off-roading and have some meat on my tires.

http://bikesdirect.com/products/merc...rott.htm#specs $699
Cheap 'tri' bike. Road bike with clip ons and Tiagra components

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...e/ventnoir.htm $699
Decent road bike Tiagra/105 components.

http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/dawes/lt1200.htm $419
Cheap road bike similar to Trek 1000

I am leaning towards the Fantom Cross or the Vent Noir. The Vent Noir seems like a decent road bike that I could ride when I do not feel like riding Aero for long periods of time, while the Fantom seems more versatile. Not as fast but I can ride is crummier conditions and do light off-roading. Also the price on the Fantom is way nicer than the others.

Not sure if I want to spend $700, the Dawes and Fantom, seem cheap. I will probably try to put it together myself and then take to LBS for fitting, but may just take it to them and have them build it. Any suggestions?
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Old 11-20-07, 09:48 PM   #2
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I will probably try to put it together myself and then take to LBS for fitting, but may just take it to them and have them build it. Any suggestions?

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Old 11-20-07, 10:13 PM   #3
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Will you ride in snow, rain, ice? Will you have fenders, racks, wider tires for crappy conditions?
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Old 11-20-07, 10:22 PM   #4
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I would recommend a cross bike over a road bike for winter as it is more flexible with room for fenders and wider tires for rain snow conditions.
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Old 11-21-07, 07:50 AM   #5
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I will ride in snow, I am new to the area but believe the roads get plowed. I hate riding in the rain, but do now when its not too bad. Hopefully I will not ride on ice. I will put fenders on the bike.

I do not understand the need for wider tires. Snow tires for a car are more narrow then normal, but have far deeper tread. The idea idea is to decrease the surface that touches the road so that there is more pressure where the tire actually makes contact. I would think the same would hold true for a bike.

I live in south eastern Connecticut, we do not get much snow.
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Old 11-21-07, 08:24 AM   #6
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I will ride in snow, I am new to the area but believe the roads get plowed. [...] I live in south eastern Connecticut, we do not get much snow.
The key question is, how much is "much"?

If I understand your strategy correctly, you want a tyre with aggressive thread pattern, that cuts through top layer of snow and grips on the surface below. That may well work where you live. Around where I live that would fail spectacularly, as the surface below may not have any traction to speak of. If you can count on having pavement there instead of ice, snow packed by cars/plows, or snow packed by your own tyre, then by all means use narrow summer tyres. If not, get narrow studded tyres such as the Nokian W106.

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Old 11-21-07, 09:27 AM   #7
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Your local bike shop seriously has no bikes for $699. You need to find a new bike shop. And good luck trying to get a free bike fitting when you purchase a bike on the internet. I would say up your limit to $800 go to a local shop, get fitted, get free tune ups, and go ride.
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Old 11-21-07, 10:12 AM   #8
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Little snow means the roads are typically clear, and the snow doesnt last very long. Last year there was almost no snow. Never more than 3inches. Why spend extra money at a LBS? If they build it for me I would guess that I get a fitting. I am not looking for a free fitting.
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Old 11-21-07, 06:51 PM   #9
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If they are giving you a free fitting on a road bike just for building it, I assume that the fitting is from untrained individuals. On the other hand there is always the philosophy that if you keep buying from the internet chain stores, you local store will one day be gone and you will have no one to build your bike.

Not sure what advice you really want then, but I would say the Time Trial Triathlon bike, seems like a logical winter bike.
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Old 11-21-07, 11:12 PM   #10
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I will ride in snow, I am new to the area but believe the roads get plowed. I hate riding in the rain, but do now when its not too bad. Hopefully I will not ride on ice. I will put fenders on the bike.

I do not understand the need for wider tires. Snow tires for a car are more narrow then normal, but have far deeper tread. The idea idea is to decrease the surface that touches the road so that there is more pressure where the tire actually makes contact. I would think the same would hold true for a bike.

I live in south eastern Connecticut, we do not get much snow.
Decreasing the contact area is only effective in certain conditions. On hard ice it does not help and it is better to have a larger area for more friction or to have studs. Don't have much experience with Connecticult winters but I'm sure you get some ice. You can stay with narrow studded tires in this kind of condition. But often road bikes don't even have enough fork crown clearance for the studs.
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