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First "Real" bike pick. Suggestions?

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First "Real" bike pick. Suggestions?

Old 11-16-04, 06:06 AM
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Devious Rhesus
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First "Real" bike pick. Suggestions?

First post, hi folks.

I want a bicycle for entertainment reasons. I've never had anything nicer than the $99 super center mountain bike special, so needless to say I was surprised by how much real bikes cost.

What I want to do: Have fun. Ride the bike to the tennis courts (5 miles), maybe visit some bike paths around the city. Maybe eventually do a ~four hour trip.

So far i'm interested in the Trek 7200 FX. Would this cycle allow me to do what I want, or should I save my nickels for a 1000c road bike?

As for height: I'm 6'4". I tried the 22.5" frame (7200) and it seemed to fit me fine. Should I special order the 25"er?



Thanks so much for reading through all that!
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Old 11-16-04, 06:21 AM
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Depending on what condition the trails are in, the 7200 might be a better move than a road bike. And depending on how used to the riding position of a road bike you are, a four hour ride bent over might not be comfortable.

As for frame size, stand over the center tube. For a mountain bike (and I'm imagining a hybrid also) you should have about 1-2 inches between your undercarriage and the bike's top tube. If you don't, you probably need a bigger frame. If it's way below your undercarriage, go with the bigger size. I'm thinking at 6'4", a 22.5" might be a bit small for you. I stood over a twenty and it was a bit low and I'm 6'1". Obviously, I don't know your inseam size, but I'm guessing you're a bit longer than I am in your inseam.

The secret here is trying, and if your lbs doesn't have a 25 in stock that you can stand over, try to find one that does so you can make sure.

Hope that helped.
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Old 11-16-04, 06:23 AM
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I do not know what the term "entertainment reasons" mean, but I do have a suggestion. Have you looked into a Recumbent? There are many Bents made for people your height. You just might find them more comfortable than an upright.

Just a thought!
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Old 11-16-04, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Devious Rhesus
I want a bicycle for entertainment reasons. I've never had anything nicer than the $99 super center mountain bike special, so needless to say I was surprised by how much real bikes cost.
Yeah... it can be quite a shock but everytime people tell me about how they used to own one of the "Blue Light Special" bikes and ask me why LBS bikes cost so much, I ask them how well they liked those cheap dept. store bikes.


Originally Posted by Devious Rhesus
What I want to do: Have fun. Ride the bike to the tennis courts (5 miles), maybe visit some bike paths around the city. Maybe eventually do a ~four hour trip.

So far i'm interested in the Trek 7200 FX. Would this cycle allow me to do what I want, or should I save my nickels for a 1000c road bike?
How much riding have you done up til now? A hybrid is sometimes better for people who are either just starting out or getting back into riding after being off the bike for many years. The more upright position is easier to get accustomed to initially. In such a case, you should treat the bike as a transition bike and you'll most likely want to get a roadbike further down the line. However, that said, it's not like the hybrid will outlive its usefulness even if/when you get a roadbike so it still remains a good investment.

I would definately recommend the 7200FX over say something like the standard 7200 because of the lack of a suspension fork. I think Trek did right with the FX series. They spec'ed a steel fork instead of a suspension fork and that should take care of most of the road shock and vibration. Actually, if you can swing it, consider going with the 7300FX as it has a higher quality steel fork and a step up in components. I think that suspension forks on roadbikes is silly and usually they're not even decent quality suspension forks. They only serve to jack up the price, add complexity and rob you of efficiency. I really couldn't tell you for certain if the 7200FX will be a pefect fit for your riding needs without knowing a little more about you but my guess is that it probably will be... for now. If you stick with cycling and start progressing to the point where you will want a faster more aggressive riding position then you'll probably start looking at dropbar roadbikes in the next couple of years.


Originally Posted by Devious Rhesus
As for height: I'm 6'4". I tried the 22.5" frame (7200) and it seemed to fit me fine. Should I special order the 25"er?
This is really hard to determine without knowing things like your inseam and such. But the proof is in the pudding and the pudding is how well you actually physically fit the bike or vice versa. And the best way to determine that is to actually get on the bike and ride it around. You say it seems to fit okay. Did you have the shop do a proper fit and you're serious about getting the bike then ask them to properly fit you to it to make sure it will indeed be comfortable for you.
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Old 11-16-04, 08:24 AM
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Find yourself a good local bike shop, one used by local club riders.
Try and test a variety of styles.
Drop-bar light touring bikes such as the 1000c
City style hybrids like the 7300fx
Flat bar road bikes, like the Specialized Sirius.

The very upright style of city bike is OK for short distances (< 10miles) but not so good on longer rides. When sizing a bike, pay particular attention to the length (reach from saddle to bars) as well as the height of the cross bar.
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Old 11-16-04, 10:31 AM
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For recreational riding on streets and hardpack dirt trails, bikes such as the Trek 7200FX and 7300FX are terrific. If properly fitted, these bikes allow riders to get their hands up higher than the saddle. That provides a better view of scenery and traffic, and reduces discomfort in the neck, hands, and crotch.

The "look" of the Trek 7200 is new, but the actual geometry is almost identical to the classic sports touring road bikes of the 1970's and 1980's. A longer wheelbase and rear triangles gives a more comfortable ride, and the relaxed head angle gives stability. The longer chainstay means room for racks and saddlebags. The tires are the same width as was standard on touring bikes twenty years ago, before ultra-narrow tires began to dominant the market. The wider tires also add comfort and stability.

To check if the 7200 FX fits you, verify that you can put the saddle up high enough that when the pedal is at the bottom position, your leg is almost, but not quite, straight. Check to see if you can then put the bars up so that your hands are as high as the saddle. And, when you stand over the bike, there should not be any pressure from the top bar on your crotch. A good store will take the time to verify which size is the best for you.

MOST of the people (not all) riding to Starbucks on bikes with racing geometry to "Look Just Like Lance" would enjoy their neighborhood riding more on something like the 7200FX. But then, they would not look like Lance. Most of the fun of riding road bikes has been destroyed by the bizarre notion that people who do NOT race ought to be riding pretend race bikes, instead of bikes designed for how they actually ride.
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Old 11-16-04, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
For recreational riding on streets and hardpack dirt trails, bikes such as the Trek 7200FX and 7300FX are terrific. If properly fitted, these bikes allow riders to get their hands up higher than the saddle. That provides a better view of scenery and traffic, and reduces discomfort in the neck, hands, and crotch.

The "look" of the Trek 7200 is new, but the actual geometry is almost identical to the classic sports touring road bikes of the 1970's and 1980's. A longer wheelbase and rear triangles gives a more comfortable ride, and the relaxed head angle gives stability. The longer chainstay means room for racks and saddlebags. The tires are the same width as was standard on touring bikes twenty years ago, before ultra-narrow tires began to dominant the market. The wider tires also add comfort and stability.

To check if the 7200 FX fits you, verify that you can put the saddle up high enough that when the pedal is at the bottom position, your leg is almost, but not quite, straight. Check to see if you can then put the bars up so that your hands are as high as the saddle. And, when you stand over the bike, there should not be any pressure from the top bar on your crotch. A good store will take the time to verify which size is the best for you.

MOST of the people (not all) riding to Starbucks on bikes with racing geometry to "Look Just Like Lance" would enjoy their neighborhood riding more on something like the 7200FX. But then, they would not look like Lance. Most of the fun of riding road bikes has been destroyed by the bizarre notion that people who do NOT race ought to be riding pretend race bikes, instead of bikes designed for how they actually ride.
I think you sold me. I'm still going to try out all the bikes I can, but this sounds suited to my needs.

I assume your screen name means you're from Houston. What do you think of Bike Barn?
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Old 11-16-04, 10:56 AM
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alanbikehouston
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Originally Posted by Devious Rhesus
I think you sold me. I'm still going to try out all the bikes I can, but this sounds suited to my needs.

I assume your screen name means you're from Houston. What do you think of Bike Barn?
The "Bike Barn" on Kirby has nice, and experienced staff. Avoid week-ends if possible, as they get too busy. They are happy to transfer bikes from one store to another so you get the size or color that you want. I also appreciate their willingness to make minor adjustments or repairs "on the spot" if I happen to be riding in that neighborhood. I hate leaving a bike overnight when it needs a five minute adjustment on something.
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Old 11-16-04, 10:57 AM
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Devious Rhesus
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I've been browsing at the Bay Area barn, so I might cruise up to the Kirby store to get a second opinion. Thanks!
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