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Overweight Dude - Bike Choice? Trek FX vs Trek 820/3500

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Overweight Dude - Bike Choice? Trek FX vs Trek 820/3500

Old 04-03-16, 03:26 PM
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mkwdrs
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Overweight Dude - Bike Choice? Trek FX vs Trek 820/3500

Overweight (325 lbs .... 230 would be a good weight for my body type) guy looking to buy a bike. I am 47 years old, have a stiff back, my body is not very flexible, and I have shorter arms than most males. Therefore, I usually require my bars to be 2 to 4 inches above the seat level which might require a stem riser. Looking to ride for enjoyment and hopefully to get started on a path of better eating and fitness.

My first thought was a Surly Ogre in size medium b/c it has a good stack height and with an uncut steerer tube, I feel that I could get the bars up as high as I wanted them. However, due to some unforseen 4 digit bills in the past couple of months, I just don't want to spend that much money at this time.

I just came from a Trek Store. I'm considering a Trek FX (7.1 or 7.2) vs a Trek 820/3500 (820 & 3500 have same geo, 1 is steel 1 is aluminum) and yes I realize that these are two different animals. All of these are below the $500 price point brand new. The 20" FX bike and the 19.5" 820/3500 are not too far off geometry wise speaking. All my riding will be 100 pavement or if I do go offroad, it would be a smooth surface (meaning no rough stuff).

Mtn bikes - I like the fat cushy tires; sturdy frame for my weight; little on the heavy side; would need to replace the suspension fork with a rigid fork; good gearing; sturdy wheels

FX bikes - little lighter; has 35mm tires which is the bare minimum width that I would want (frame could take a slightly wider tire); rigid fork already; good gearing; has a kickstand plate; I have an extra set of stury wheels if issues occur with the stock wheels

They are all within reason price wise. All of them could take a rack & fenders if I so chose. Either would serve my purpose. I'm leaning towards the mtn bike just due to the wider tires. My fitness level is so bad, there won't be any serious mileage for a while. I mainly just want a less expensive bike that I can leave in the truck and ride when the opportunity presents itself. I might be better off starting with a mtn bike and working up to an FX like bike.

Any advice appreciated.
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Old 04-03-16, 03:38 PM
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Go with the Trek FX, make sure it fits you properly especially with the stiffness/aching or lack of flexibility. The Trek 820 is a poor choice at this point until you get some seasons on the saddle. I have a 2002 820 that I use all winter snowbiking for conditioning. They are a beast. Heavy and roll resistant, you may dislike it so much that you dread riding it.
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Old 04-03-16, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by mkwdrs View Post
Overweight (325 lbs .... 230 would be a good weight for my body type) guy looking to buy a bike. I am 47 years old, have a stiff back, my body is not very flexible, and I have shorter arms than most males. Therefore, I usually require my bars to be 2 to 4 inches above the seat level which might require a stem riser. Looking to ride for enjoyment and hopefully to get started on a path of better eating and fitness.

My first thought was a Surly Ogre in size medium b/c it has a good stack height and with an uncut steerer tube, I feel that I could get the bars up as high as I wanted them. However, due to some unforseen 4 digit bills in the past couple of months, I just don't want to spend that much money at this time.

I just came from a Trek Store. I'm considering a Trek FX (7.1 or 7.2) vs a Trek 820/3500 (820 & 3500 have same geo, 1 is steel 1 is aluminum) and yes I realize that these are two different animals. All of these are below the $500 price point brand new. The 20" FX bike and the 19.5" 820/3500 are not too far off geometry wise speaking. All my riding will be 100 pavement or if I do go offroad, it would be a smooth surface (meaning no rough stuff).

Mtn bikes - I like the fat cushy tires; sturdy frame for my weight; little on the heavy side; would need to replace the suspension fork with a rigid fork; good gearing; sturdy wheels

FX bikes - little lighter; has 35mm tires which is the bare minimum width that I would want (frame could take a slightly wider tire); rigid fork already; good gearing; has a kickstand plate; I have an extra set of stury wheels if issues occur with the stock wheels

They are all within reason price wise. All of them could take a rack & fenders if I so chose. Either would serve my purpose. I'm leaning towards the mtn bike just due to the wider tires. My fitness level is so bad, there won't be any serious mileage for a while. I mainly just want a less expensive bike that I can leave in the truck and ride when the opportunity presents itself. I might be better off starting with a mtn bike and working up to an FX like bike.

Any advice appreciated.
Don't really understand this logic. Buy a mountain bike if your plan is to take your bike off road 70 or 80% of the time. Buy a hybrid, cyclocross, or light touring bike if you plan to ride mostly on roads or pavement. Mountain bikes are purpose built for aggressive riding on trails, not cruising around on paved trails. I know the fat tires on the mountain bike look appealing, but frankly, you can probably mount a fatter tire on an FX, if you want. The FX is built for short to medium length rides on roads and paved trails. There is nothing to work up to, though with either bike you might need to eventually replace the back wheel.

Second, you say you have unusually short arms for your height. You sure about that? What length sleeve do you usually take on a dress shirt?
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Old 04-03-16, 04:33 PM
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Replace the suspension fork on the 820 with a replacement made for the puropse , & probably the freewheel rear wheel with a cassette hub wheel

For the axle bendibng Low cost freewheel hubs are Prone to . though the 3500 may come with that wheel .

low end suspension forks will bob up& down withe very pedal stroke ..

You have to take up getting the fit right with the dealer , not an Internet forum.
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Old 04-03-16, 05:47 PM
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I agree with the hybrid recommendation. If you really want 26" wheels, get a comfort bike, not a mountain bike. Being one of the recumbent guys, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention 'bents. Most 'bents are only rated for 275-300 pounds; but if you're planning on losing anyway, you wouldn't be long over a 300-lb limit. Consider something like a Sun EZ-Classic, which ANY BIKE SHOP IN THE COUNTRY can order. The small wheels might look funny at first but they're incredibly strong. I'm pretty sure the weight limit is based on the seat, which could be beefed up if it became an issue.

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Old 04-03-16, 08:28 PM
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There is a Clydesdale forum where you might get better advice from other big guys. If you click the little triangle at the bottom of the post you can get the moderator to move you . It's used to report a misplaced thread, and I guess you can use it to move your own thread. You don't have to, but I know there are some very knowledgeable people on other forums who don't visit this forum.
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Old 04-04-16, 06:11 AM
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Originally Posted by ironwood View Post
There is a Clydesdale forum where you might get better advice from other big guys. If you click the little triangle at the bottom of the post you can get the moderator to move you . It's used to report a misplaced thread, and I guess you can use it to move your own thread. You don't have to, but I know there are some very knowledgeable people on other forums who don't visit this forum.
OP knows this, and already posted a similar thread there last week.

Edit. Looks like OP posted a bunch of threads 6 years ago about buying a new bike. So question to OP. Did you ever buy that new bike? What did you like or not like about it? If you chose not to purchase a bike 6 years ago, what stopped you from pulling the trigger?

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Old 04-04-16, 08:52 AM
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OP was 290 then, 325 now. I'm guessing that whatever he started doing before, he didn't keep it up.
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Old 04-04-16, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
OP was 290 then, 325 now. I'm guessing that whatever he started doing before, he didn't keep it up.
Ravages of time. I can relate. Even with riding regularly 6 months out of the year, my weight has crept up in recent years. (the other 6 months is a killer) Weight management is accomplished more by pushing away from the dinner table, and fast food counter than by riding.
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