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New Bike advice?

Old 04-26-05, 11:54 PM
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itchy
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New Bike advice?

I want to purchase a new bike for commuting roughly 6 miles of paved road. I was planning on spending around $500, but may go above that.
I looked around briefly and got suggestions from different bike shops in the area. I was shown a Marin Muirwoods, Marin Fairfax, Cannondale Adventurer 400, Motobecane 300HT, and Trek 7300. I was only able to test ride the fairfax, muirwoods, and motobecane. I liked the fairfax, but I don't know how well it would handle if I were pushed off the road/forced onto the curb. However, I did not like the ride of the mountain bike as much.
Any opinions or other recommendations?
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Old 04-27-05, 04:14 AM
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MichaelW
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Why not post some links to your selection of bikes, then we can check them out.
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Old 04-27-05, 05:55 AM
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itchy
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Good point, sorry about that here they are.
fairfax
muirwoods adventure 400
motobecane HT300
Motobecane record
trek 7300
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Old 04-27-05, 06:36 AM
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Originally Posted by itchy
Good point, sorry about that here they are.
fairfax
muirwoods adventure 400
motobecane HT300
Motobecane record
trek 7300
You got a real varied selection of bikes there. If it was me today, and I wanted to buy just one bike to cover all of my needs, I'd probably buy a cyclocross bike. Road bike with knobby tires. Something like this:

Trek X01
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Old 04-27-05, 07:21 AM
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itchy
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Thanks for the suggestion on the Trek X01, but it is out of my price range.
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Old 04-27-05, 07:36 AM
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hey itchy, I was just on the rei-outlet website, they have the 2004 Marin Fairfax for $329.93. Not a bad bike, not a bad price! Good Luck! That Trek X01 is a beautiful bike though!
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Old 04-27-05, 07:42 AM
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Flat bar road bikes are a good option, the ones with a triple chainset. You dont need suspension, this just adds weight and complication. Look for a bike that will accept full length fenders, back and front (ie has forks with threaded eyelets), and takes a rear luggage rack.
For reliable wheel you need at least 32 spokes, more if you are heavyweight rider.
You need adaquate tyre clearance for a medium width (28/32mm)+ fenders. Racing style caliper brakes are too restrictive. Long drop calipers or V brakes give sufficient room.
The Fairfax is nearly there, does it take front fenders?
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Old 04-27-05, 07:59 AM
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Personally, I prefer the Fairfax. Of course it is most like my commuter (Rocky Mountain - RC 30) so here are a few reasons why I like it. I like the combination of some road bike characteristics (fast and efficient pedaling) but I also like the mountain bike like geometry. The component group on the Fairfax looks pretty decent. I don't care for having any suspension - it only reduces the speed and efficiency of the bike. At the end of the day, you need to be most comfortable with it and your LBS who is going to serve you. I picked the lbs and then I chose a bike they sold that felt like the best. I wouldn't worry about how the bike will react if pushed off road etc.....if you feel the most comfortable on the bike, the results will be the best. Don't be scared to test ride the bike a couple of more times. Any LBS worth their salt will want you to buy the right bike and not just be interested in selling a bike.

Does the Fairfax have eyelets for a panier rack and fenders? These were must have for me.
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Old 04-27-05, 08:45 AM
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Thanks for the pointer to the rei-outlet site almost 1/2 price of the '05. I don't imagine they made many changes from the previous model?
I will be moving soon, so purchasing from REI is helpful as there is one close to where I am moving. I am going to stop by and test ride again today and will check on front fenders/rack options.
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Old 04-27-05, 09:03 AM
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I found this review on the fairfax. It says the 05 is " tripple-butted and the light carbon fork is installed". Pardon my ignorance, but is this a BIG difference? The carbon fork should make it lighter is it worth the extra cost?
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Old 04-27-05, 09:39 AM
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IMHO a carbon fork on a commuting bike isn't really a necessity. Yes it is lighter, but I'm not sure if it would be worth paying $640.00 for a Fairfax as opposed to $330.00. Again that is just my 2 cents.
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