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Old 05-10-07, 08:16 PM   #1
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Recommendations for a big guy?

Hello everyone,

First off, I'm a big guy... 6' and approx 300#. I started looking at bikes last weekend with my g/f and was overwhelmed with concerns that the bikes I was looking at would not support me. I was looking through the "clydes" forum but that seemed to be more geared towards racing... I'm just looking for something to ride around my complex and possibly some dirt trails. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks alot.
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Old 05-10-07, 09:10 PM   #2
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You must have gotten the wrong impression from the Clyde forum, there are only a few racers in there. The majority of them (us) are either recreational/fitness riders or commuters.
I'll go ahead and give you some clyde advice here though, but I suggest you should restart this thread in the Clydesdale forum to get more input.
Any non-department store bike will work for your situation. The bikes themselves are just about all the same when it comes to holding your (our) weight. I am checking in at 292lbs right now, down from over 360lbs from over a year ago.
The biggest concern for you will be the wheels. Settle for nothing less than 36 spokes for the rear wheel and 32 spokes for the front wheel. However, the more the better. Back when I was 360lbs I had a rear wheel built for me with 36 spokes to replace the 32 spoke wheel that came on my bike. It is still holding strong after over 5000 miles of commuting and many many offroad adventures.
Your next concern, and just as major as the wheels, is the "fit" of the bike. Please go to a bike shop and make sure that they fit you properly for a bike.
After that you'll be working on getting the perfect saddle. There's a good chance that the one which comes with your bike will work out fine, but if after a month or so you are still sore in the ass you might want to upgrade. And you'll get plenty of info from the Clyde guys about saddles too.

Now comes to your riding style. You say you want to ride around your complex as well as hit some dirt trails. This is fine but know that knobby tires for offroad use are a major drag on the pavement. If the dirt trails you plan on riding on are hard packed dirt and/or covered in gravel you can get away with getting only one set of tires that will do it all, the Kenda Kross Plus comes to mind, I used those tires for the exact purpose you have mentioned and they worked out great! I actually wore them completely out and had fun doing it. This will save you from having to have two sets of tires (one for the road and one for the dirt).

The bike that I got a couple of years ago is the Giant Rainier, which has suited me well and still gets ridden like hell. Granted you don't have to spend as much as I did, I'm just letting you know what another clyde has used who has done exactly what you plan on doing.

Just remember, the rear wheel and the fit of the bike are more important to us heavier fellows than anything else on the bike, assuming the bike comes equipped with decent components, which damned near every bike you get from a bike shop will have.

I hope I have been of some help to you.
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Old 05-11-07, 05:11 AM   #3
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Each brand will have similar bikes, but I know mine, so I will suggest something in the Giant Sedona line. I have about 3,000 miles on mine over the past few years, and other than one broken spoke it has never needed anything but an adjustment or two.

Mine is a 2003 DX model. In the last couple of years I switched to slicker narrower tires because it suits my riding. Also, last year I replaced the suspension fork with a solid fork because I prefer the handling without a shock...

I have weighed between 300 and 365 for the time I have been riding... so it will withstand the weight.
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Old 05-11-07, 06:17 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by pj7
I suggest you should restart this thread in the Clydesdale forum to get more input.
I second that, come on over to the clydes. We don't bite!
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Old 05-11-07, 07:37 AM   #5
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I'll chime in with the Fuji Supreme as an option. I was 295# when I started on mine and it has held up well through 11,000+ miles.

You've gotten lots of good advice already. My only other advice is to look around at several bike shops (LBS) to get a feel for the place that wants your business. I am fortunate to have 3 bike shops relatively close to me. I eventually chose the shop that caters to commuters and families since they were the most knowledgeable about outfitting a clyde and seemed most eager to work with a newbie rider. Having a good LBS that will work with you can make getting into biking so much easier. I would also suggest taking another look at the Clyde forum. There a plenty of everyday riders on there.
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Old 05-12-07, 03:26 AM   #6
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Most good bikes will be aimed at the lightweight end of the range and although the frame may be able to take your weight- The anciliaries like forks and wheels will need a lot of maintenance to keep running. One manufacturer that has gone for a "Clydesdale" bike that will take punishment is Kona. They make the Hoss in two forms andd this is a manufacturer that you can trust and the parts are well sorted for the bigger or heavier rider.

UK site is as in the link below but I am certain you can buy cheaper in the US and don't forget that last years models are cheaper.
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Old 05-12-07, 08:07 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Vince077
...I'm a big guy... 6' and approx 300#. I started looking at bikes last weekend with my g/f and was overwhelmed with concerns that the bikes I was looking at would not support me....
I got an interest in motorized bicycles over the last year or so.
Even though most of these motor kits don't run faster than about 30-mph or so, it's very common to crack and break frames with them as well as other parts--even if the bike is only ever used on-road. Most modern bikes you see are made to be lightweight, and not really all that strong.

One of the brands of bikes that has the best reputation for durability with a motor is not-hardly a "racing" bike at all--it's the American Classic cruiser from Worksman Cycles:

These bikes are made basically the same way that newsboy cruisers were made in the 1950's and 1960's--of relatively thick steel, with not much regard to weight. Everywhere I asked about them, I got the same feedback; they are tanks. If you are riding a Worksman and manage to break it, then it's a good bet that most anything else would have broken as well.

I ordered one off the website and was told 30-45 days for delivery. If you can find a local dealer, they have some "pull" with the factory and can sometimes get you one faster than that.
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