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Gazelle Bike - Would appreciate your input!

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Gazelle Bike - Would appreciate your input!

Old 06-16-14, 01:52 PM
  #51  
CrankyOne
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Originally Posted by RolandArthur View Post
The Gazelle has Shimano Alivio derailleurs, pretty basic wheels and V-brakes. The Focus came with Deore LX derailleurs, hubs and Alex rims and hydraulic disk brakes. And Gazelle bikes are a lot cheaper here than in the US.
You're talking a completely different world than the OP. She's looking at an Omafiets, not a cheap recreational bike. That I'm aware of, none of the parts on the Gazelle she's looking at would be considered cheap or second rate by anyone. Your comments are misleading and out of context.
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Old 06-16-14, 02:27 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by CrankyOne View Post
You're talking a completely different world than the OP. She's looking at an Omafiets, not a cheap recreational bike. That I'm aware of, none of the parts on the Gazelle she's looking at would be considered cheap or second rate by anyone. Your comments are misleading and out of context.
I had to use a point of reference so I took my Gazelle as that point. The omafietsen you are referring to cost less in Holland than a Medeo Lite so your remark of a ¨cheap recreational bike¨ are off mark in this context: the omafiets is just another bike here in Holland, popular because it is cheap and lasts a long time.

@ OP: Try riding some bikes and don´t focus to much on an exotic (overly) expensive bike. IMHO paying $1000 or more for a simple traditional Dutch bike is something for a person with an interest in Dutch bikes. Maybe not a really good choice for someone with a $1000 budget looking for a bike. Remember you will need additional $ to keep it riding.

Edit:

I missed the sarcasm in your post. I´ll be hiding myself in shame somewhere in the corner.

Last edited by RolandArthur; 06-16-14 at 03:10 PM.
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Old 06-16-14, 06:59 PM
  #53  
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Agreed.

3 speeds and true roadsters are different.

People on a Dutch bike don't mind at all they don't ride fast. But they will be comfortable to get to where they ride.
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Old 08-06-14, 10:52 AM
  #54  
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Aika Trading is the US wide distributors of the Gazelle bikes (check out the Gazelle main NL site for confirmation). All the other companies purchase and defer to them when they need to restock their bikes. I do not work for them I just want to clarify points mentioned here, Rolling Orange is a Brooklyn base company that sells Dutch bikes. I am not sure if they directly distribute the bikes from NL but if you look at Aika T website they refer to them as one of their retailers. I would think it would be the safe bet to purchase your bike from Aika directly for shipping since they are used to doing this.

I purchased my Gazelle Basic on Craigslist - had an alert that sent me emails when someone posted a Dutch bike. I had a Sparta and a Batavus before my Gazelle. These two other brands are also very good, they are very popular in Holland, that is where I used to ride them. I wished that I bought a Batavus instead, they rode IMO better. The weird thing with my Gazelle is that:
1. There is rust, never had that on my other second hand bikes.
2. The skirt guards and chain chase are some weird type of varnished fabric. My Batavus was steel, just like the bike. It was a perfect match.

BTW, Amazon has great prices on Yepp maxi right now, just note that that Easyfit weight limit is only limited to the luggage rack limit. The Dutch bikes are so strong that they are considered second seats for full size adults (proven and done so many times). The Linus does not have this feature, this is a nice feature if you child is large for their age and you want to keep them in a safe seat until they can seat properly in BoBike or Yepp Junior then a Dutch bike is definitely the way to go. This was my consideration when I bought my bike since I already had a great bike but wanted the above feature.
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Old 08-06-14, 11:10 AM
  #55  
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@Greenie - How ironic, these are the 2 top places I considered purchasing from but my husband ended up finding it on eBay! In my size too (51 instead of the 57). I'm sooo excited to use it. It just arrived yesterday, we just have to get a local bike shop to assemble it. These things are no joke and HEAVY!

Thanks again for your input. It just confirms I got the right bike for my needs/wants for riding. I wasn't keen on the Linus, especially for the price it just felt cheap. And i got a gazelle for only a little bit more - definitely worth it. I also noticed the skirt guard material too...but we aren't in an area where I feel like it will get damaged or be affected. And as my husband said, they were probably looking for a way to make it slightly less heavy since it's already a tank.

Perfect timing on the yepp seat information for amazon because that's really the only thing left to purchase for it other than helmets. I didn't realize certain colors are about $50 less on there
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Old 08-06-14, 11:47 AM
  #56  
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Good luck on your bike @rachelbrooke. It will be a fun ride, it looks like you bought the Tour Populair instead - better choice. I have the 57 and it is a bit big for me, I am 5'4" and well this gives my husband the opportunity to bike my daughter around besides me. I used to have the 51 when I had my Batavus and I loved the size but was ridiculed all the time from my tall Dutch friends, 6'3' husband included. I able to manage on the lowest seat posting, I may buy a smaller bike when I visit my family later this year and just sell the larger one when I get back. Only problem is that 51 is a bit hard to find there.

Just make sure to write the number of your Axa key down just in case you lose it and you can order a replacement or do what I did and just buy one just in case. No domestic key shop can make this, you need to order this special from Axa.
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Old 08-07-14, 06:19 AM
  #57  
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In the Netherlands, a bike like an Opa/Omafiets is a significant financial investment for families. A workhorse bike is expected to be tough, versatile and just about carry anything their owner demands of them.

They're not built for recreation but simply to get the job done.
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Old 08-07-14, 03:24 PM
  #58  
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Rachelbrooke, congrats. Is the bike new or used?

Greenie, thanks for the information on Aika. That looks like a good way to get a Gazelle here in the States. I believe you already know, and Rachelbrooke will soon learn, what a pleasure it is to ride these Dutch bikes. Despite having several other bikes of varying types I use my Kruisframe (Azor) most of the time, both for utility and recreation.
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Old 08-07-14, 05:54 PM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by Greenie View Post
2. The skirt guards and chain chase are some weird type of varnished fabric. My Batavus was steel, just like the bike. It was a perfect match.
@Greenie, the material you're referring to is called Lakdoek. It is quite high quality and most people prefer this over steel or plastic.

@rachelbrooke, congrats on the bike. Looking forward to hearing how you like it.
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Old 08-07-14, 06:37 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
In the Netherlands, a bike like an Opa/Omafiets is a significant financial investment for families. [...]
How did you come to this ¨conclusion¨? Have you visited the Netherlands in the past 80 years?

Last edited by RolandArthur; 08-07-14 at 06:45 PM.
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Old 08-07-14, 06:39 PM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by JBC353 View Post
Rachelbrooke, congrats. Is the bike new or used?

Greenie, thanks for the information on Aika. That looks like a good way to get a Gazelle here in the States. I believe you already know, and Rachelbrooke will soon learn, what a pleasure it is to ride these Dutch bikes. Despite having several other bikes of varying types I use my Kruisframe (Azor) most of the time, both for utility and recreation.
It is used - I think about 3-4 years old. I'm looking forward to learning how much fun they are to ride!! I like that people often comment that it has a nostalgic feel to it.
@Greenie - Glad to hear your input because I am also 5ft 4 so it seems this is a good fit for me. And funny enough, my husband is the exact same height as yours! haha So maybe not too many rides in his future, but he has his own bike anyways.
@NormanF - I've read only great reviews on how durable they are!
@CrankyOne - Thank you much! I'll be sure to post back with how I am liking it. I'm new to the world of biking!
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Old 08-07-14, 06:59 PM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by rachelbrooke View Post
It is used - I think about 3-4 years old. I'm looking forward to learning how much fun they are to ride!! I like that people often comment that it has a nostalgic feel to it.
Great to see you were able to find a second hand bike, probably a bit less expensive than a new one and from experience: It will probably last just as long from a human perspective, Giant Sequoia might disagree

On a flat road they mostly ride themselves which makes it an excellent everyday ride for anyone and a brilliant pub ride for students. Have fun!
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Old 08-07-14, 09:22 PM
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A country in which cars are expensive and the price of gas.... a good bike is a worth a lot more.
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Old 08-08-14, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by rachelbrooke View Post
@Greenie - How ironic, these are the 2 top places I considered purchasing from but my husband ended up finding it on eBay! In my size too (51 instead of the 57). I'm sooo excited to use it. It just arrived yesterday, we just have to get a local bike shop to assemble it. These things are no joke and HEAVY!

Thanks again for your input. It just confirms I got the right bike for my needs/wants for riding. I wasn't keen on the Linus, especially for the price it just felt cheap. And i got a gazelle for only a little bit more - definitely worth it. I also noticed the skirt guard material too...but we aren't in an area where I feel like it will get damaged or be affected. And as my husband said, they were probably looking for a way to make it slightly less heavy since it's already a tank.

Perfect timing on the yepp seat information for amazon because that's really the only thing left to purchase for it other than helmets. I didn't realize certain colors are about $50 less on there
Nice ride you got there. Post a photo when it gets a seat etc!

- Andy
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Old 08-08-14, 10:15 PM
  #65  
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Originally Posted by TransitBiker View Post
Nice ride you got there. Post a photo when it gets a seat etc!

- Andy
Thank you! Speaking of seats, I have to ask this and am hoping someone can help with direction. Again, me being a newbie, I don't know about what is "normal" for new bikers.

I took it out for the first time tonight and my left knee "popped" with almost every turn of the wheel. It was quite uncomfortable! They are still sore and I didn't ride far at all. I have the seat cranked all the way down and while my feet do reach the pedals at the lowest point, I can't help but think the pain is related to it being too far of a strain for me? Like I'm too short?

I would be quite sad if this is the case and there is no fix!! If anyone knows of anything that could help with this, I would be very thankful for input/advice. I do feel it is a particular issue with the fit of this bike, since my previous (cheap) bike never caused any knee pain/discomfort whatsoever.
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Old 08-08-14, 10:27 PM
  #66  
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Your saddle may be set too low! Adjust it. You should have a slight bend at the knee when you pedal through the top part of the pedal rotation. If you have still have a problem dialing in your fit, your bike shop should be able to render assistance. On an upright bike, the saddle should be slightly below or at the handlebar height.
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Old 08-09-14, 07:56 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
Your saddle may be set too low! Adjust it. You should have a slight bend at the knee when you pedal through the top part of the pedal rotation. If you have still have a problem dialing in your fit, your bike shop should be able to render assistance. On an upright bike, the saddle should be slightly below or at the handlebar height.
Really?? It feels like if it goes any higher I won't be able to reach the pedals.
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Old 08-09-14, 08:32 AM
  #68  
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That's a 51cm frame right? At 5'4" it seems like it should fit you. While seated can you put your heel on the pedal when its at the 6 o'clock position? Without having to rock to the side.

As a starting point you should be able to pedal the bike with the ball of the foot on the pedal, sole of the foot level, with just a slight bend in your knee at the lowest pedal position.

While your at it, throw your rule on that seat tube. It should measure about 20" from the center of the crank spindle to the top of the seat tube, where the adjusting bolt is. Just to be sure it really is a 51cm frame, because it looks a bit bigger to me.

Oh, and on that bike the seat will be well below the level of the handlebars.

Last edited by JBC353; 08-09-14 at 08:36 AM.
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Old 08-09-14, 09:03 AM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by JBC353 View Post
That's a 51cm frame right? At 5'4" it seems like it should fit you. While seated can you put your heel on the pedal when its at the 6 o'clock position? Without having to rock to the side.

As a starting point you should be able to pedal the bike with the ball of the foot on the pedal, sole of the foot level, with just a slight bend in your knee at the lowest pedal position.

While your at it, throw your rule on that seat tube. It should measure about 20" from the center of the crank spindle to the top of the seat tube, where the adjusting bolt is. Just to be sure it really is a 51cm frame, because it looks a bit bigger to me.

Oh, and on that bike the seat will be well below the level of the handlebars.
I cannot put the balls of my feet on the pedals without leaning into it. :/ I just tried it. My knees are still so sore I'm scared to even try to ride it again. I will take it to a bike shop, probably today, to see if there's any remedy for this.
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Old 08-09-14, 10:28 AM
  #70  
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Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
A country in which cars are expensive and the price of gas.... a good bike is a worth a lot more.
and a country where used bikes can be had for a pittance and purchase of new bikes is heavily subsidized (as it should be).
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Old 08-09-14, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by rachelbrooke View Post
I cannot put the balls of my feet on the pedals without leaning into it. :/ I just tried it. My knees are still so sore I'm scared to even try to ride it again. I will take it to a bike shop, probably today, to see if there's any remedy for this.
Well, that's not good. Sounds like it is just too big for you.

There are some possible options. You might find a seat that has a lower profile. The Brooks B67s my wife finally agreed to try (and now loves) is a good 3/4" lower than the cheesy, cushy seat she had been using.

Also, depending on the type of seat and seat clamp you might be able to turn the clamp upside down and lower the seat about an inch. I did this on her Raleigh DL1 to get the seat a bit lower.

A little bit of seat adjustment can make a huge difference. When I first rode in flip flops instead of my normal clodhopper street shoes I felt like I could barely reach the pedals. It was very uncomfortable.

If you post a picture of the seat from beneath it we might come up with a solution.
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Old 08-09-14, 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by JBC353 View Post
Well, that's not good. Sounds like it is just too big for you.

There are some possible options. You might find a seat that has a lower profile. The Brooks B67s my wife finally agreed to try (and now loves) is a good 3/4" lower than the cheesy, cushy seat she had been using.

Also, depending on the type of seat and seat clamp you might be able to turn the clamp upside down and lower the seat about an inch. I did this on her Raleigh DL1 to get the seat a bit lower.

A little bit of seat adjustment can make a huge difference. When I first rode in flip flops instead of my normal clodhopper street shoes I felt like I could barely reach the pedals. It was very uncomfortable.

If you post a picture of the seat from beneath it we might come up with a solution.
Wow I'm impressed! You just nailed everything the bike shop did to correct it. I have a brooks seat and they flipped the guts of it to lower it and it went down like an inch. They also added on some blocks to the pedals (like they use for children cause apparently I'm that petite ha!) I'm giving my knees a couple days to recuperate and then I'm going to try again.

I felt a lot lot less crazy after talking to the bike shop - they said if the bike is too big you can have very sore knees from the ligaments stretching and popping. I now have a slight bend so fingers crossed this does the trick!!
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Old 08-09-14, 05:20 PM
  #73  
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Roadsters are for taller riders! (Usually, in the larger frame size that appears to be the typical sizing default with them.) Their enormous wheel size adds to their appearance. I wouldn't change the classic 635 mm wheels for anything in the world. The ride is plush and its like you're riding a Cadillac. That's what sets the Toer Populair apart from cheap gaspipe bicycles that are harsh and unpleasant to ride.
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Old 08-09-14, 06:26 PM
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That's great news. I still gotta wonder if that seat tube really is 20"

If the seat height issue is resolved then you can move on to other adjustment to get it fitting just right.

Seat position fore and aft. The seat can slide a few inches forward and back. You can also flip the clamp around to the front or back of the seat post which moves the seat over an inch forward or back. This helps put the handlebar grips in reach without having to lean forward. Upright bikes work like that.

Seat tilt. I start by tilting the seat so that I am not sliding forward on it. If you find yourself pushing against the handlebars to stay in position on the seat you may need to adjust the tilt.

Seat tension. There is a nut in the nose of the seat that adjusts the tension on the leather fore and aft. I tighten it an 1/8 turn maybe once a month as the saddle breaks in and then very rarely afterwards. It really makes a big difference in comfort keeping the tension right. Rider weight is a big variable.

Handlebar height. These Dutch bikes have long stems that can be adjusted up and down a large amount. I like mine pretty high so that I sit straight up with the handlebar tilt adjusted.

Handlebar tilt. To keep my wrists in a comfortable position I like the handlebar tilted down a bit, between 5 and 10 degrees maybe.

An easy way to find a good starting position of the handlebar grips is to sit upright on the seat with arms to the side. Close your eyes and put your hands out to where you would like the grips to be. Adjust the seat and handlebar position to fit that. In doing this you will also want to keep your position on the bike relative to the pedals comfortable so some compromising may be necessary.

It only takes a few tools to do all this and you can learn to do it by yourself quite easily if you wish.
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Old 08-09-14, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by rachelbrooke View Post
I cannot put the balls of my feet on the pedals without leaning into it. :/ I just tried it. My knees are still so sore I'm scared to even try to ride it again. I will take it to a bike shop, probably today, to see if there's any remedy for this.
Try wrapping knees in a hot towel before you ride, then cool off after with ice or a cold towel. Also, if you're not allergic, try some olive oil, 2 tbs a day every other day for 2-3 weeks, as well as some garlic (you can mix it into the olive oil if you want) and seperately try some ginger lemon herbal beverages if you can find any. This combination should sort joints out unless they have some structural or other issue like previous trauma etc.

Also, regardless of activity, try gentle stretching & massage of legs every day to get any stagnant lymph flow moving, plus water to flush it out.

Good luck & keep us posted!

- Andy
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