Bike Forums

Bike Forums (
-   Fifty Plus (50+) (
-   -   Looking for more speed (

Yen 07-19-07 01:36 PM

Looking for more speed
I know leg strength is one of the keys to more speed, so let's pretend I've already ridden tens of 1000s of miles and I'm already in peak condition. :lol:

When I bought my bike the initial intention was to *supplement* our walking with some casual weekend riding around the neighborhood and short rides around town, on trails, at the beach, etc. Now, a few months later, 20+ mile rides are common on the weekends with a few rides during the week as time allows, and we plan to increase that as much as we can. We're even fantasizing about a century one day. I can see how the weight of the bike and my upright position play into this (again, pretending I'm already in top shape).

I could modify the bike as much as possible (lower the bars, rigid stem for the seat, change the wheels and tires), but I'm still stuck with the top tube which I do believe is longer than ideal for me (I believe the height is OK but the reach is not). I can't move the seat forward or the bars back any more than they already are.

Or, I could get a different bike. The Kona Dew Deluxe was the first bike I rode when we first began shopping. Now I am thinking of returning to the shop for another look. The guy who helped us that day suggested installing comfort bars. I don't remember why I didn't further pursue that option.

I'm wondering if it would be wiser to replace the wheels, tires, and bars on my current bike, or replace it with another bike that will let me go faster right from the start (with possible modifications to the bars). It will cost some $$ to replace the wheels and tires, but the top tube will still be long.

I hope everyone isn't sick of reading about my bike fit issues, but if you can stand one more post on it I'd appreciate suggestions from others who are more experienced than I am.


PaulH 07-19-07 01:50 PM

Well, one of the key benefits of buying another bike is that you will then have two bikes. You may find that the Kona Dew is the better of the two for errands and shopping, leaving the new one for distance riding.


stapfam 07-19-07 01:54 PM

No matter what you do to the current bike-You will not change it much. Except it will be a slow bike(?????) that has had money spent on it.

First of all you have to find the Shop. The shop that will get you fitted to your next bike, and take into consideration your wrist problem----Incidentally-- We are not hearing much about that now so hopefully it was not such a great problem as you initially thought- Or it has improved a bit.

The next stage up for you from your current bike is a road bike. And I do not mean a full road bike with drop handlebars and Full Race Geometry. If you can now take the road bars then OK but what I am thinking of is a road bike wit hstraight handlebars. Something like the Specialised Sirrus or the Giant FCR. The Giant I know can come in the WSD form and I think that Trek make one aswell.

Still think that it is a bit soon for you to get your NEXT bike- Note I did not say your last bike- As I still think you have to find out a few things about Bike Handling -Fit and setup on your current bike. Once you have got that right- then you will know what you want from the NEXT bike

As to the Kona Dew-I think they are fantastic bikes with one problem- They are heavy.

will dehne 07-19-07 06:54 PM

Yen- You know that you could have a lot of fun trying out all kinds of bikes?
All you need is a cooperative Bike-store or better yet, a bike company distributor with lots of test bikes. Trek does this in this area.
I do recommend that you try out an upper end road bike just so you know what you are missing if you buy something else. I made my mistakes of buying too cheap. Those cheap bikes were a total loss after a few years. The better (and more expensive) bikes provided more pleasure but got trumped by new technology over 5 years.

The Smokester 07-19-07 07:32 PM

I just recently got my first custom fit bike. That is to say, I found an LBS who had a "fit cycle". This is a stationary bike which has so many adjustments on it that it can mimic the geometry of any bike. Associated with this is a body measurement protocol and a computer program.

The result for me has been a bike of very high comfort. I recommend it

Yen 07-19-07 09:37 PM

Thank you. I should have titled it "I'd like to cover a little more distance in a little less time".

I think I get the idea though.... thanks for the tips.

Bill Kapaun 07-19-07 10:14 PM

Looking at your profile, it appears you are riding a Cypress SX.
According to the Giant website, the tires are 700x40C.
I'd go to a 700x28C. That's bound to give you a couple more MPH with the same effort.
AND, most likely, you could transfer them to your "new" bike when the time comes.
Not sure? BUY 1 and put it on the front.

Tom Bombadil 07-19-07 10:15 PM

It's always hard to know what works best for someone else. It can be hard enough to figure it out for yourself.

One option: Go to a Trek dealership, ride a 7.5 FX WSD and a Pilot 1.2 WSD. A flat-bar "fitness" hybrid, close to a flat-bar road bike, and a comfort geometry road bike, both re-engineered to better fit a woman's body. These are both good representations of flat bar and comfort road bikes for women.

Or go to a Giant store and ride a FCR1W or FCR2W and a OCR1W.

You might have to give yourself some time to get past the initial differences in riding a road bike. They may feel strange and uncomfortable at first. They may still feel that way after 10 rides (like they do for me). Give them a chance.

I'd be more supportive of making some changes to your current bike, to improve performance, if I was certain it was the correct size for you. Normally lowering the bar and/or stem is a reasonable option, but if the top tube is too long, that becomes more difficult to do. I would probably install some long bar ends and play around with different settings (There's a used bike shop right by my office that sells scratched up bar ends pulled off of old bikes for $3-$5/pr, I have three sets from them.)

I think the best path is if you can find a shop that has some expertise in fitting people to bikes, who understands your wrist problem & can work with you to test out options.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:31 AM.