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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-09-13, 11:30 AM   #1
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Need help deciding on bike

I'm looking to upgrade from a used 2011 KHS flite 300 with 2300 group set to a Giant with 105's. Components and looks are important to me. I like the 2013 Defy 1 but noticed compared to the 2014 Defy 1, it has a 12-28 cassette with 23mm tires vs. the 12-30 ansd 25 mm tires on the new 2014. Also the avail 1 has the 12-30 cassette. Im currently riding on a 11-30 which i like. i'm not a strong rider yet but plan to be in the future. Not sure if i should go with a woman's specific bike like the avail 1 or go with the defy 1. i like the colors of the defy much better than the avail's. Looking to make an investment that i can grow into as a rider. I'm an Athena, I'm 5'8 and 215lbs. Any advise would be appreciated.
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Old 08-09-13, 12:57 PM   #2
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I suggest the 12-30 cassette and 25 mm tires. I'm about your weight and love 25 mm tires over 23s. I can run 25s at 100 psi and not worry about pinch flats. Much nicer ride than 23s at 120 psi.

I have a triple with a 30-27 granny gear combo and there's times I need it for steep hills. My next bike will probably be a compact double with a 34-32 granny gear. Therefore I recommend the 12-30 cassette unless you never ride hills more than 10% grade and/or a very strong rider.

As far as the women's specific bike, my youngest daughter races men's bikes while my oldest rides on a women's specific bike. Your best be is to have the LBS put you one each bike and see what if feels like to you plus what the LBS thinks.
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Old 08-09-13, 01:49 PM   #3
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Hard to make a call on a cassette without knowing the chain rings up front, and the terrain. Bear in mind that cassettes and tires are wear items, and you'll need to change them along the way. For me, tires last about 1500 miles (rear) and 3000 miles (front); cassettes go about 2000 miles.

Assuming the 2012 has room for 25s instead of the 23s on there, you might even get the shop to change them for you as part of the deal.
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