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Overanalyzing, help stop the spiral!

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Overanalyzing, help stop the spiral!

Old 01-01-14, 12:39 PM
  #1  
Beatofmyowndrum
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Overanalyzing, help stop the spiral!

Hi everyone! I'm a newbie who is trying to buy my first bike (as an adult). It all started innocently enough when I thought "I wouldn't mind riding a bike like I did as a kid and hit up some local trails". So I went on Amazon to see what was available and that was the beginning of the end . Somehow I've jumped in the deep end and have become completely obsessed with my imaginary bike.

I have been researching bikes for weeks now and while I am more knowledgeable (I know what a crankset is!) I am still undecided on my commitment level and the bike itself. My choices are:

A 2013 Fuji Sportif 1.7 (price $434)
http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...ck-to-top-link

A 2013 Trek 1.1c (price $520)
http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes..._1_h2_compact/

OR a used Giant Escape 3 hybrid (price $225)
http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/...3/11500/55833/

All of these choices are based on price. I don't want to pay $600+ on something that's going to collect dust in my shed. I know some people would say buy an old used road bike on craigslist but I took a look at one and didn't like the tension shifters (not to mention the price on a bike that is older than me!).

I've really been leaning towards a road bike because after reading some of these threads, a lot of people seem to buy a hybrid and then a road bike a year or two later (why not skip the middleman?). But I was considering the hybrid because it will get me in the saddle cheaply and I probably wouldn't lose too much money if I had to resell (because I don't like riding or I want an upgrade). But I could have buyer's remorse if I buy the hybrid and and realize I really DID want the road bike!

So I guess my questions are:
1. Should I just buy the hybrid and get riding or pay more and hope for the best (the best being I take to riding)?
2. I was hoping to eventually be strong enough for group rides/charity rides, would a hybrid work for that?
3. Also the 2014 Trek 1.1 has a carbon fork, so am I screwing myself by buying the 2013 model or does it really matter for a newbie?

Sorry I'm all over the place but I overanalyze. Thanks for any advice you give, and I would love to hear any anecdotes on how you started riding and what you rode to get you to love it .
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Old 01-01-14, 12:43 PM
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10 Wheels
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Doesn't matter which bike.

Just get one that fits and start riding.

You will learn much and KNOW what to get on your Second Bike.
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Old 01-01-14, 12:52 PM
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If it fits and it is in good condition, go cheap and get riding. there are a couple of good reasons not to "skip the middleman" (buy the better road bike right at the start). One, you might not like cycling - much as I don't like to suggest the possibility, it does happen. More importantly, after we've cycled quite a bit we have a much better idea of what we actually want in a bike and that's very difficult to predict without the experience.
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Old 01-01-14, 02:13 PM
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Go to your lbs and try them out.
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Old 01-01-14, 02:30 PM
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Of those three, I guess I like the trek the best. Make sure it fits. I bought the bike that got me back into cycling for $100 off Craigslist. An old mid 90's, 14 speed, butted 4130, Nishiki with shifters on the downtube. I rode the crap out it fall 2012 and spring 2013. After 5 months on that bike I had a much better idea of what I wanted and bought my current road bike. I'm currently converting that Nishiki to a tourer. I guess my point is you don't necessarily have to spend much to start riding.
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Old 01-01-14, 02:57 PM
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3. Also the 2014 Trek 1.1 has a carbon fork, so am I screwing myself by buying the 2013 model
or does it really matter for a newbie?
If you want to carry stuff on the front, a fork of metal with the fittings, is better.

and ready to take mudguards..

NB: Accessories are discounted at point of sale, with the Bike

Last edited by fietsbob; 01-01-14 at 03:01 PM.
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Old 01-01-14, 04:12 PM
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Thanks everyone for the tips. I think I'm going to try and buy something reasonable and within my budget and if I catch the bug invest in something else down the line. I think I read too many "a bike should cost ___" and "a bike should have ___" articles. I'm going to simplify
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Old 01-01-14, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Doesn't matter which bike.

Just get one that fits and start riding.

You will learn much and KNOW what to get on your Second Bike.
I agree with this. I've had many bikes over the years, and ironically, the one I've put the most miles on in the last 3 years is one I literally pulled out of the trash - an old mtb bike. It is heavy and a little too big for me, but does what I need it to - gets me home from work in all kinds of weather. The perfect bike is the one you happen to be riding at the moment.
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Old 01-02-14, 09:00 AM
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The first bike I bought as an adult, I bought on a whim at a pawn shop for $75. I didn't know thing one about bicycles (at the time). I lucked out and got one that fit me and also was decent quality. I rode that bike everywhere for about 5 years.

In 2008 when I decided that I was going to start riding again, I knew what I wanted.

The Point being: The first bike is to show you what you want in the next bike.

My favorite piece of advice regarding selecting a bike is from The Practical Cyclist by Chip Haynes:

"Buy the bicycle that makes you want call in sick to work and go for an all day bike ride in the opposite direction."
"If you don't look at your bike and think "I want to go for a bike ride right now!", you do not have the right bike."

I liked those lines because they resonated with me.
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Old 01-02-14, 11:45 PM
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Originally Posted by 10 Wheels View Post
Doesn't matter which bike.

Just get one that fits and start riding.

You will learn much and KNOW what to get on your Second Bike.
Ditto the above- but if those are the choices, get out and try them. Here's the key: pay attention to how you're treated at the bike shop. As others have said, you'll probably be shopping for another bike soon. You want to have a good working relationship with the shop so that you can learn what would make the second bike closer to what makes want to ride.

FWIW: I've been riding bikes for 40-odd years. Add to that a 15 year career in the bicycle business, and you'd think I'd know what makes me happy. Nope. Still trying different things.
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Old 01-03-14, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
Here's the key: pay attention to how you're treated at the bike shop.
That's what I think too:
If you have mechanical or fit issues with the bike, who do you want to have to talk to about getting it fixed?
If you have a warranty issue, who do you want to have working for you with the manufacturer?
Whose advice would you value on accessories or clothing?

Within a price and style range bikes are frankly pretty similar. Bike shops, on the other hand, can vary by a lot.
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Old 01-03-14, 08:54 PM
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A bike doesn't have to be expensive to be fun!

No matter what type of bike you get you will most likely have to learn the shifting and what not. It will come with time! Truthfully your first few trips out may not be that fun! Just stay with it and little by little as you get comfortable with how it handles it will become more fun.

A road bike and mountain bike are going to have totally different handling to them! Where will you be riding most often? On a road, in the woods, a trail? The type of riding you do should help you narrow what type of bike to get.

Chances are if you enjoy riding you will end up with more then 1 bike!
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Old 01-04-14, 06:38 AM
  #13  
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Warning warning warning....
after having a heart attack in 2009 I decided to get a bike to get back in shape. Being as I live out in the country I though a hard tail MB would be best so that's what I bought. Then I actually found myself riding on the road more than trails so I added a Trek FX. After a year on the roads I wanted to go further faster so I added a Trek Madone. Then I found myself really enjoying this biking thing and had thoughts of even longer rides which would consist of overnight stays and camping so I added a Trek 520 touring bike. These 4 pretty much cover what I "need" but I still have wants. I'd like to add a full suspension MB to the stable to hit the tougher trails.

my point here is buy what you think you want first but if you really like riding don't be surprised if that one bike satisfies you needs. You may indeed end up with many bikes. That's not a bad thing.
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Old 01-04-14, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Piratebike View Post
my point here is buy what you think you want first but if you really like riding don't be surprised if that one bike satisfies you needs. You may indeed end up with many bikes. That's not a bad thing.
This is what's known as "N+1". You can't have too many bikes.
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