Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

newbie in dire need of help

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

newbie in dire need of help

Old 10-19-09, 09:58 PM
  #1  
roadbiker101
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
newbie in dire need of help

Hey guys, this is my very first time on these forums. I just started getting in to road biking (I currently have a really old one) and I plan on purchasing a new one very soon. However, I have a few questions.

What are some bikes you guys recommend that I can get for under $300?
Also, the fastest I've gone on my current road bike is about 45mph, yet the bike is a bit heavy. I'm highly aware that there are super light bikes out there, and I wanted to buy one, but I'm not too sure if light bikes can stay as fast as the heavier bikes at higher speeds. It just seems as if a heavier bike would go faster than a lighter bike, is that true?

It's like rolling a tennis ball and baseball as hard and far as you can. The baseball would definitely roll further. Is this true with bikes (sorry for the stupid analogy, I didn't know other ways to explain it)? I'm guessing lighter bikes are slower because it's so light that the wind would have a huge effect on you as you ride fast compared to a heavier bike. If you guys could help me out, that would be awesome! Thanks sooo much!
roadbiker101 is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 06:58 AM
  #2  
mwmcginn
Professional Genious
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: St. Louis Mo Area
Posts: 83

Bikes: 1999ish Giant Rincon, 2004 Trek 4900

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I think you are confusing speed with momentum. Anything heavy can go fast, it just takes a large amount of energy. Things that are heavy will slow down slower too (baseball v. tennis ball).

Go for a lighter bike.

I bought my Giant OCR last year for about 300, I think. It looked like new. A lot of folks buy and dont ride.

Last edited by mwmcginn; 10-20-09 at 09:00 AM.
mwmcginn is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 07:10 AM
  #3  
cyclefreaksix
Senior Member
 
cyclefreaksix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Plano Texas
Posts: 1,311
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Yup, go lighter. Eventually you are gonna have to go uphill, and then that weight will be working against you
cyclefreaksix is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 07:35 AM
  #4  
mike
Senior Member
 
mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Snowy midwest
Posts: 5,392
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If you are commuting at 45 miles per hour or thereabouts, my suggestion is that you join the Olympic team and get your bicycles for free.
mike is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 08:42 AM
  #5  
thermador
Bike Commuter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 94
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
It is often said "Bikes can be fast, light, cheap and comfortable. Pick two."

You're not going to find a super-light carbon fiber or titanium bike for $300 (unless you're buying stolen property!). What kind of bike do you have now?

If you've got an old but high-quality steel bike from the '80s it would be better for you to use your $300 to upgrade the bike you have and get it rigged for commuting.
thermador is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 08:50 AM
  #6  
rodar y rodar
weirdo
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 1,962
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You might get lucky with a $300 new bike, but I ind of doubt it. If you don`t mind going with a used bike, there`d be no problem getting a good one for that price. Do you actually dislike your current bike, or you`re just considering?

About downhill speed, I think you`re right. I won`t go into the uphill stuff because since you already have a heavy bike, you probably already knew what the other guys just said . Also, I suggest not being overly concerned about weight of a commuting bike.
rodar y rodar is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 08:55 AM
  #7  
echotraveler
Senior Member
 
echotraveler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 1,805
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Post a pic of the old bike! 300.00, you should stick to used bikes then...were do you live?
echotraveler is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 09:10 AM
  #8  
rhm
multimodal commuter
 
rhm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NJ, NYC, LI
Posts: 19,067

Bikes: 1940s Fothergill, 1959 Allegro Special, 1963? Claud Butler Olympic Sprint, Lambert 'Clubman', 1974 Fuji "the Ace", 1976 Holdsworth 650b conversion rando bike, 1983 Trek 720 tourer, 1984 Counterpoint Opus II, 1993 Basso Gap, 2010 Downtube 8h, and...

Mentioned: 438 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1540 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 12 Times in 11 Posts
Originally Posted by echotraveler View Post
Post a pic of the old bike! 300.00, you should stick to used bikes then...were do you live?
+1. $300 buys a very nice used bike. New, not so much.
rhm is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 09:26 AM
  #9  
Artkansas 
Pedaled too far.
 
Artkansas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: La Petite Roche
Posts: 12,851
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by roadbiker101 View Post
It just seems as if a heavier bike would go faster than a lighter bike, is that true?
Only down hill.
__________________
"He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

Last edited by Artkansas; 10-20-09 at 09:31 AM.
Artkansas is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 10:27 AM
  #10  
irclean
Born Again Pagan
 
irclean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Southwestern Ontario
Posts: 2,241

Bikes: Schwinn hybrid, Raleigh MTB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mike View Post
If you are commuting at 45 miles per hour or thereabouts, my suggestion is that you join the Olympic team and get your bicycles for free.
irclean is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 10:46 AM
  #11  
neil
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Posts: 736
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
What's been said above is accurate. $300 on a new bike is waste of money - you will not get a decent bike for that price. Stick to used and upgrade. There's nothing wrong with an old bike if it's been well maintained and is of good quality. Even if the maintenance has been sketchy, $300 can do a lot of upgrading and repair if you're building on a good base.
neil is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 12:24 PM
  #12  
julianpowell
ding ding
 
julianpowell's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: new jersey via richmond, va
Posts: 39

Bikes: jamis citizen 2, huffy cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
my next nightmare will be that i ill find myself going at 45 mph on a $299 bike...eek...
julianpowell is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 01:35 PM
  #13  
QuickityJacks
Senior Member
 
QuickityJacks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 260

Bikes: SS Surly Crosscheck, Ridley Crossbow, Specialized Tarmac

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by mike View Post
If you are commuting at 45 miles per hour or thereabouts, my suggestion is that you join the Olympic team and get your bicycles for free.


Down hill, tail wind, and a jet-pack. Or maybe the OP got this number by driving past one of those radar stations and didn't notice the car gaining on his six?
QuickityJacks is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 01:46 PM
  #14  
njkayaker
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 11,061
Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1700 Post(s)
Liked 19 Times in 14 Posts
Originally Posted by roadbiker101 View Post
What are some bikes you guys recommend that I can get for under $300?
For a new bike, $300 is probably to low. A reasonable starting price is closer/around $500.

Originally Posted by roadbiker101 View Post
Also, the fastest I've gone on my current road bike is about 45mph, yet the bike is a bit heavy.
You did that down hill. A dump truck could hit that speed going downhill.

The useful number isn't "top speed", it's "average speed".

Originally Posted by roadbiker101 View Post
I'm highly aware that there are super light bikes out there, and I wanted to buy one, but I'm not too sure if light bikes can stay as fast as the heavier bikes at higher speeds. It just seems as if a heavier bike would go faster than a lighter bike, is that true?
Ignore speeds going down hill. Which do you think is to go faster (average speed) or farther: somebody on a 20lb bike or the same person on a 100lb bike?

Originally Posted by roadbiker101 View Post
I'm guessing lighter bikes are slower because it's so light that the wind would have a huge effect on you as you ride fast compared to a heavier bike. If you guys could help me out, that would be awesome! Thanks sooo much!
The wind has the "same" effect on every bike.

For normal bike weights (15-30lbs) and travelling on flat ground at speeds of 15+mph, it's the wind (ie, aerodynamics) that matter much, much more than the weight.

Last edited by njkayaker; 10-20-09 at 01:50 PM.
njkayaker is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 05:14 PM
  #15  
bugly64
Share the road.
 
bugly64's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Marysville, CA
Posts: 1,238

Bikes: 2012 Salsa Fargo, Rocky Mountain Fusion, 2013 Santa Cruz Tallboy LTc, 2015 Teammachine SLR03, Yuba Mundo, 2008 Brompton M3L

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 33 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I slowed myself down to 100 mph otherwise I would over shoot work.
bugly64 is offline  
Old 10-20-09, 05:34 PM
  #16  
Grim
Senior Member
 
Grim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 2,993

Bikes: Cannondale T700s and a few others

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
45? hehehe down hill tail wind and holding onto a car. I have managed to break 40mph ONCE and it was down hill peddling my butt off with a tail wind and I ran out of gear. I might have made 45 if the bike I was on had a 52 tooth ring. 41 was all I could do with a 48/11 and it was only for a second.

Like was pointed out average speed is a true test.

If you want to go fast then something like a 20lb Crit bike would be fast but forget about racks and ride quality. Get good at patching tires and take stock in Co2 bottles. Plan on traveling light.

Personally I average around 15mph most of the time on a 27lb Cannondale Touring bike with racks and a pannier or trunk bag, lunch and coffee I roll around 32lb in the summer and start pushing 40lb in the winter with headlights and extra clothing figured in.

I prefer the racks to back packs. Weight hanging on shoulders tends to wear on me so I take the weight penalty. The 700x32 or 700X35s I run on my bikes have been flat free in 2700 miles. Ride quality is way above my bike that has the 700x23's.

A Cross bike would be a good compromise. You can run bigger tires but it is still more of a race geometry making fitting racks more difficult (short chain stays make for heel strike havoc).

Now as for your price requirement...new........
Lucky score on Craigslist or yard sale....Touring bike or vintage road you got a decent chance. Cross it could happen but it will take a long search in most cases. People don't give up Cross bikes often and they are sort of a newer class.
Grim is offline  
Old 10-21-09, 07:29 PM
  #17  
roadbiker101
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanks A LOT for the info guys; this really helps me a lot. So far I've narrowed my options down to 3 bikes (because of my budget, plus I just bought a brand new car two weeks ago as well). Would you guys be able to tell me some pros and cons about these bikes? I greatly appreciate it.

http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...00_20000_56003

http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...00_20000_56003

http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/road/1_series/12/
roadbiker101 is offline  
Old 10-21-09, 07:31 PM
  #18  
roadbiker101
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Also, the current bike that I have is really old; I'm not even sure the year. I just found it in my storage and fixed up the wheels and gear and everything. It's called a "Sturdee" bike (I think, and I know nothing else). How are these bikes by the way?
roadbiker101 is offline  
Old 10-21-09, 08:16 PM
  #19  
old and new
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,132
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
ALL OK, a nice mix. Starting from the bottom, the Trek, the best bike and not a bike that you would "ought-grow" anytime soon. It's not a cheap bike. It has Sora which works well even though it's the least pricey of Shimano's serious groups, quite worthy. Few would critsize the Treks.

The first Performance bike appeals to me. Some may disagree but I believe it too is worthy. Without going into detail the parts are adequate and the frame should be well built too. GT's gotten a bad rap for a number of reasons, they're coming back and I for one respect their recent offerings. I've seen GTs, DiamondBacks & Mongooses out and about, ridden a couple as well. These were once more highly regarded and for rep. Places (not just hi-end stores) to sell them speaks to at least some level of quality. A member here just bought a different brand that also suffered some falling out of favor for one reason or another, perhaps no reason at all. He got a great bike, three years ago it would've cost him much more.

I just want to impress upon you that the bike is just fine. DO mind the sizes.

The Schwinn, another bike with "mixed" reviews 'till recently. A good choice but it's only available in a X large size. My intent is NOT to boss you into any particular size.
The GT small is for a man 5'7" - 5'9" ; XS for 5'5" or less ; XL for over 6'. (approx.)
Unfortunately (perhaps) they're out of the medium & LG. both very popular sizes.

DO take other opinions, charts, trying bikes-out , etc. into account, I'm only bringing this aspect to your attention as it's important. I'm 5'10", I can go small but prefer med., on some bikes large if I'm in the mood. You ought to ask a sales rep. or two.

The Schwinn is only avail. in XL. The sizing's similar to others.

Again, if the GT is avail. in your size, no shame in it. Nothing wrong in having the price differential for a car payment. Other choices are out there BTW
old and new is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Dellphinus
Fifty Plus (50+)
13
02-10-12 04:13 PM
boston blackie
General Cycling Discussion
2
09-18-07 09:13 PM
Second Mouse
Road Cycling
7
04-11-06 04:09 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.