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Choosing a Bike From BikesDirect.com (Limited Budget)?

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Choosing a Bike From BikesDirect.com (Limited Budget)?

Old 03-01-14, 12:34 AM
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beast1989
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Choosing a Bike From BikesDirect.com (Limited Budget)?

I'm looking for a bike for traveling on campus almost solely. I have already screwed up and dropped $250 on the Genesis 29er from Walmart so that has put a dent in my budget. I don't know anything about bikes EXCEPT that the Genesis 29er is the most regrettable purchase I've made in my life.

Since the Genesis moves like a tortoise, I'm looking at road bikes. My budget is $300 but preferably I would like to get the least expensive yet serviceable option available. I know my options are limited but which of the handful of bike options that fit the bill would you all recommend?

I'll include that I'm 6'0", 240lbs in case it may be pertinent.

https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/road_bikes.htm

Thank you

Last edited by beast1989; 03-01-14 at 12:40 AM.
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Old 03-01-14, 01:59 AM
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If the only reason why you are unhappy with your current ride is because you think it "moves like a tortoise"... put some slicks on what you got and call it good. A road bike has the advantage in aerodynamics and lighter weight, which help in longer distances. Those advantages are marginal in a campus cruiser.
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Old 03-01-14, 08:27 AM
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It's extremely heavy and cumbersome as well. I want a new bike.
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Old 03-01-14, 08:47 AM
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Just means it will get you in shape faster . Besides, you aren't allowed to take the bikes inside, so would you rather tempt the thieves with a bike you could care less about or flashy roadie that you really like?

You might also contact the Campus Police and inquire what they do with unclaimed/abandoned bikes. If they auction them off, you find might something of your liking at a decent price.

Edit: Of the list you provided, I like the Dawes Lightning Sport Al for $259.

Alternatively, I think that the Dawes Eclipse City at $249 is better suited for your purposes.

Regardless of which model you end up getting from BD, you should plan on at least letting a LBS make sure that the wheels are properly tensioned and true- you run the risk of breaking spokes if you don't.
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Old 03-01-14, 08:51 AM
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This is my experience. I bought my son a BD single speed with a flip flop hub so he could ride it fixie if he wanted. It cost $300. I believe it was marketed as a Windsor.

It was fine. It was easy to assemble. He loved it.

Unfortunately he blew a stop sign and got nailed by a car. He's fine, the bike was totaled.

We ordered another. Same bike, etc. The bike wasn't finished or assembled as well and didn't ride as well. That, combined with my son's understandable fear of road cycling, resulted in the bike just rusting over.

So, the quality varies from bike to bike, even when it's "the same".

Having said that, I think a single speed cheapie from BD is a reasonable way to go.

Here ya go: https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...essenger_x.htm
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Old 03-01-14, 08:53 AM
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IMO you should save more money or buy a used bike.
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Old 03-01-14, 10:58 AM
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Let that be your beater bike, go to your LBS or Performance and you can get a nicer "nice" bike for the weekend. (IF i could do it over this is what I'd do)
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Old 03-01-14, 11:58 AM
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The bike moves like a tortoise? did you consider the possibility that could be more of an issue with you? I've seen guys on mountain bikes ride as fast as guys on road bikes think about that a bit.

Going from a mountain bike to a road bike will only give you another 15 to 20% faster average speed increase, so if your pedalling your current bike at 12mph average the most you'll get is 14mph! Instead of buying another bike why not invest in a set of smooth next size down narrower tires? Kenda makes a low cost semi smooth tire called the K838 for about $15, but I would try to find a better tire like the WTB Slick Comp tire for about $31 on Amazon. The WTB will be about 200 to 300 grams lighter (each) than your current tires and the semi slick tread will roll better on pavement.

Then continue to save your money while you ride your current bike because $300 or $400 or $500 isn't going to get you anything better than what you already have, you're going to have get into the $1,200 range to find a decent improvement, an if you buy a $300 bike now you will be unhappy with that one too in a short time period then you wasted another $300 that you could have used towards even a better bike. So save up and continue to ride your bike working on your distance and speed.

By the way, I wasn't trying to insult you in my first sentence just trying to get you to open your eyes a bit and not make another wasteful expenditure.
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Old 03-01-14, 01:27 PM
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I agree, you need to work on the engine more than the chasis. I had big problems maintaining speed or going any type of distance at first, but after a few months a 14-15mph average over 25-30 miles wasn't a problems. That said I am all about N+1. I think a used bike from your LBS or CL if you know somebody who is knowledgable and can help you hunt one down is the best way to go. Even with a BD bike, you'll need to add $100+ to have it assembled at your LBS that you'll need to factor in if you can't or don't assemble it yourself.
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Old 03-01-14, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
The bike moves like a tortoise? did you consider the possibility that could be more of an issue with you? I've seen guys on mountain bikes ride as fast as guys on road bikes think about that a bit....
No offense taken. Cycling in the gym is my means of cardio besides a little basketball so it's not a power issue. I actually enjoy turning the gears up to a pretty high resistance for fun/cardio as I'm getting around. It's definitely disheartening to literally almost be breaking a sweat on a high resistance gear and then get passed by people who look like they are taking a casual ride through the park come wizzing past you with minimal effort on lower gears.

Last edited by beast1989; 03-02-14 at 05:51 AM.
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Old 03-01-14, 01:37 PM
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I stopped by 4 LBS's and the cheapest bike any of them had on hand was in the low $400s.

If I remember correctly the Giant Escape 3 was a decent bike and cost approximately $410.
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Old 03-01-14, 02:16 PM
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I work on a college campus and see what happens to 'campus bikes'. Since you already have the Genesis (and you really don't like it) put some road slicks on it and use it. If it gets stolen you won't feel that bad. It it rusts to nothing (after you have gotten some use from it) you won't feel bad. While that is happening, keep an eye out for a nice used road bike.
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Old 03-01-14, 03:28 PM
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Personally I would wait to buy a new bike, wait till your riding skills and power increases and wait till the Walmart bike starts to break, if you ride that bike for 3500 miles a year that walmart job should last 2 to 3 years if you take of it, by then your riding abilities will have increased, and you can save up more money to buy a much nicer bike instead of a lateral bike.

And if you are riding that bike to College don't get a nice bike because a nicer bike will get stolen faster!

Don't worry about people passing you, like in the old west days of gunslingers, there always eventually going to be someone faster than you! And a better gun didn't make the gunslinger faster, but with practice you can keep some of them at bay, but practice takes time.
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Old 03-01-14, 07:02 PM
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Get one of these.
https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/mercier/nano.htm
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Old 03-01-14, 09:58 PM
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Or if you don't have much in the way of steep grades to climb you could get one of these: https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/se/premium_brew.htm That bike is a beautiful bike, completely lugged too, sure it's a single speed but you can change out the sprockets as you get stronger, plus the maintenance on it is far less then a multi speed bike. These bikes can be fast too.
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Old 03-02-14, 06:26 AM
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Originally Posted by beast1989 View Post
No offense taken. Cycling in the gym is my means of cardio besides a little basketball so it's not a power issue. I actually enjoy turning the gears up to a pretty high resistance for fun/cardio as I'm getting around. It's definitely disheartening to literally almost be breaking a sweat on a high resistance gear and then get passed by people who look like they are taking a casual ride through the park come wizzing past you with minimal effort on lower gears.
You do understand the concept of spinning versus mashing?

Aaron
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Old 03-02-14, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
You do understand the concept of spinning versus mashing?

Aaron
He clearly doesnt, as expressed in the quoted bold text. Not meant in a negative way, we are trying to help!

OP: keep your current bike, find some semi-slicks or some kind of lightly treaded tire to help, and then learn to SPIN, not mash. You are using too tall of a gear, use an easier one! Leg strength and mashing on a bike don't really help you go fast, spinning smoothly does The only time I will mash is up a steep, but short, hill. Its faster than downshifting!

I might also recommend re-packing and properly adjusting the hubs. You will need cone wrenches and grease to do so. Its not that hard if you take your time, lots of instructions online. Park tool's website, Sheldon brown's website... and others. No need for fancy grease, a tube of full synthetic bearing grease at an auto parts store will likely be under $10, a set of cheaper cone wrenches will be $20. Hubs are important, take care of them. And keep your chain lubed too! Use a wet lube since the bike is kept outside. These two things will help keep you rolling smooth and efficiently as possible!

EDIT: Since a 29" rim is just a wide 700c rim, you can get "hybrid" tires pretty cheap, How wide is the rim outside? I bet you can put at least a 700x35c tire on there. Something like this might work: https://www.jensonusa.com/Bicycle-Tir...2-Kourier-Tire and they are $15 each! Just need new tubes. Not saying those tires are the best or any good, but they are not that expensive. No reason to spend $40/tire for a college bike stored outside...

Last edited by nymtber; 03-02-14 at 09:35 AM.
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Old 03-05-14, 12:08 PM
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Ok the new bike option doesn't seem to be a god one unless I want to bump my budget up. I've been looking for a used bike on craigslist. Would someone be interested in helping me find a good bike on CL? If so pm please and I can pm you details such as city etc. thank you
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Old 03-09-14, 05:01 AM
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In all honesty, I would get a set of tools first. Unless you have a serious budget available for having your bike tweaked at a bike shop, one of the best gains you can make is keeping your bike in great shape. A poor bike, well maintained, is better than an expensive one, that is not cared for.

And if someone is wondering, I have a Cannondale F900, and a Cannondale tandem. I have had all sorts of bikes, one of the fastest bikes I had in the past was a 20 dollar garage sale special - an older road bike but in mint condition. The owner said it was slow and clunky - yeah they are when the breaks are rubbing...

It is always amazing how good your bike can be, almost any bike, when you take the time to fix it up right.
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Old 03-09-14, 08:16 AM
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Get the bike you have looked over and tuned by the LBS. Then study up on proper fit and make the adjustments. Proper fit is the single most important factor in bike enjoyment and performance.
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Old 03-13-14, 06:05 PM
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How do you all feel about the pricing on these two bikes?

Specialized Sirrus Road Bike

1987 Nishiki Tri-A Equipe - Tange 1 tubing Frame & Fork

thank you
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Old 03-13-14, 07:08 PM
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That is just for the frame and fork. It would be an expensive and involved project. Check out the Spesh, if it fits (a good possibility if you are between 5'10" and 6'0") offer homeboy a buck fitty.
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Old 03-13-14, 09:32 PM
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No customer service line to ask them?.

"Direct" may bypass QC before shipping , as well ..

As suggested in the 5th post..

Last edited by fietsbob; 03-14-14 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 03-13-14, 11:21 PM
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Well, if you regret the Walmart purchase, just sell it. Take a loss, whatever. Lesson learned. It's just money. Move on.

Secondly...used bike prices inevitably stink. I've trolled CL many times looking for used bike values. They just aren't there. By the time you're done updating them and replacing each and every creaky broken part, you'll have spent more than you would have on a BD bike.

BD bikes are great values...

avoid the stem shifters on the low end. Get a SS/fixie if you want...I'm not the biggest fan of them but if you have a relatively flat campus they can work out.

I think your best bet is to get a Sora or Claris-equipped bike. Look at the brake shifter. you can get one for roughly $400.
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Old 03-14-14, 12:21 AM
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That is a really nice looking ride ...

Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
Or if you don't have much in the way of steep grades to climb you could get one of these: Track Bikes - SingleSpeed Fixed Gear Track Bikes - SE Racing Premium Brew

That bike is a beautiful bike, completely lugged too, sure it's a single speed but you can change out the sprockets as you get stronger, plus the maintenance on it is far less then a multi speed bike. These bikes can be fast too.
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