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Newbie here... Trying to decide between these bikes. Please help?!?

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Newbie here... Trying to decide between these bikes. Please help?!?

Old 12-31-15, 03:24 PM
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level3
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Newbie here... Trying to decide between these bikes. Please help?!?

My wife decided she wanted to start bike riding and bought a Navara Big Buzz from REI and has encouraged me to buy a bike also. I recently started working out again as well and think biking will be a good way for me to get in some extra exercise. That being said... I've decided I am in fact going to buy a bike. I'm gonna put my budget at around 1100 dollars give or take. The main things I want on my bike are flat bar, disc brakes, carbon post, and light overall weight. It will be used mostly on paved bike paths. We have several in the area. 10-15 mile rides. I've kind of narrowed down my list to 3 bikes. Actually 4 but 2 are the same. I've sat on all these bikes except the Cannondale and they all feel comfortable for me. The Cannondale I am interested in is not in stock anywhere around here and I would have to order it. Below are the bikes I've selected. I think I will be comfortable on any of these bikes but I just want to make sure I'm getting the best bang for my buck. Seems like a lot of you guys really know your way around bikes. Any help or suggestion would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

First up would be the 2015 Fuji Absolute 1.1 LE or the 2016 Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc. Some of these part descriptions get a little confusing but I actually think the 2015 LE model is the better of the 2 bikes... can anyone confirm based on their specs? Next would be the 2016 Giant FastRoad SLR 1. I really like the styling on this bike. Last would be the 2016 Cannondale Quick Speed 1. All these seem like great bikes for what I will use them for. Links to all bikes are listed below. Specs can be found at the links.

2015 Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE Disc - on sale for $1000 at LBS. - Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE Disc Flat Bar Road Bike - Dynamic Strollers World

2016 Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc - on sale for $900 at LBS. - Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc Flat Bar Road Bike - 2016

2016 Giant FastRoad SLR 1 - $1100 at LBS. - Giant FastRoad SLR 1 - All-Star Bike Shops, Inc.

2016 Cannondale Quick Speed 1 - $1000 after REI rebate. - Cannondale Quick Speed 1 Disc Bike - 2016 - REI.com
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Old 12-31-15, 03:39 PM
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In that price range, you need to ride them, not just sit on them, and buy the one that feels best to you. They will all have decent components so it comes down to geometry and how that interacts with your body comfort. Most here find one brand or another that just feels right. If you can ride one with the same frame in stock as the one you would have to order, thats better than nothing.

Any reason you discounted the Specialized Sirrus elite or comp disc or crosstrail? For $1100 you could get a nicely equipped lightweight bike in a couple other well known brands. Trek is another brand. Just saying that buy the bike that feels right and the more different bikes you try the more likely you will find that one. A carbon seat post can be easily added, other things in your list not so much. You should look for shimono hydraulic brakes for best brake feel.

Anyway, Giant is known to give you a lot of bang for the buck, and if you like the way it rides, go for it.

Last edited by ColdCase; 12-31-15 at 03:45 PM.
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Old 12-31-15, 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted by level3 View Post
My wife decided she wanted to start bike riding and bought a Navara Big Buzz from REI and has encouraged me to buy a bike also. I recently started working out again as well and think biking will be a good way for me to get in some extra exercise. That being said... I've decided I am in fact going to buy a bike. I'm gonna put my budget at around 1100 dollars give or take. The main things I want on my bike are flat bar, disc brakes, carbon post, and light overall weight. It will be used mostly on paved bike paths. We have several in the area. 10-15 mile rides. I've kind of narrowed down my list to 3 bikes. Actually 4 but 2 are the same. I've sat on all these bikes except the Cannondale and they all feel comfortable for me. The Cannondale I am interested in is not in stock anywhere around here and I would have to order it. Below are the bikes I've selected. I think I will be comfortable on any of these bikes but I just want to make sure I'm getting the best bang for my buck. Seems like a lot of you guys really know your way around bikes. Any help or suggestion would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

First up would be the 2015 Fuji Absolute 1.1 LE or the 2016 Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc. Some of these part descriptions get a little confusing but I actually think the 2015 LE model is the better of the 2 bikes... can anyone confirm based on their specs? Next would be the 2016 Giant FastRoad SLR 1. I really like the styling on this bike. Last would be the 2016 Cannondale Quick Speed 1. All these seem like great bikes for what I will use them for. Links to all bikes are listed below. Specs can be found at the links.

2015 Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE Disc - on sale for $1000 at LBS. - Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE Disc Flat Bar Road Bike - Dynamic Strollers World

2016 Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc - on sale for $900 at LBS. - Fuji Absolute 1.1 Disc Flat Bar Road Bike - 2016

2016 Giant FastRoad SLR 1 - $1100 at LBS. - Giant FastRoad SLR 1 - All-Star Bike Shops, Inc.

2016 Cannondale Quick Speed 1 - $1000 after REI rebate. - Cannondale Quick Speed 1 Disc Bike - 2016 - REI.com
You set a reasonable budget, now you need to test ride these bikes. Any bike in your price range should be reasonably light. So you need to test ride and see if any of these bikes fits you better, or just calls out to you.

Any reason you decided on a flat bar? Though I know they are ubiquitous on inexpensive bikes, they are, IMO, among the least comfortable and versatile bars available. It isn't a big deal, as there are workarounds should you decide on something other than a flat bar in the future, but just wondering.

Last edited by MRT2; 12-31-15 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 12-31-15, 05:55 PM
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I tried out the drop bars on a friends bike last week for a bit. They're just not as comfortable to me. Maybe cuz I'm getting a little old. heh I liked riding the flat bar bike much more. I also felt more in control of the flat bar bike. As far as the Specialized Sirrus Comp... yeah... that bike is nice as well. I could add that to the list but it costs a little more for similar components. There wasn't a Sirrus at the shops I went by so I didn't get a chance to hop on one. I didn't consider the Crosstrail because I don't plan on taking the bike off the pavement for any period of time. I also looked at the Trek FX 7.4 disc. It's the only FX that comes standard with disc brakes. The other components on the FX 7.4 Disc are a little below the other bikes I have listed.
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Old 12-31-15, 05:59 PM
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Test ride with tire pressure the same on 4 bikes. Go over rough roads and pay attention to the vibes and how comfortable it is or not. If its fast but not comfortable you will part with it sooner than later.
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Old 01-01-16, 01:48 AM
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Originally Posted by 2702 View Post
Test ride with tire pressure the same on 4 bikes. Go over rough roads and pay attention to the vibes and how comfortable it is or not. If its fast but not comfortable you will part with it sooner than later.
This is important to do when comparing test rides. Also note that putting larger tires on the bike at lower pressure will provide more comfortable ride. You may want to consider the maximum tire size each bike can handle. Also, gearing may be different. Personally, I like the close spaced gear ratios of my road bike. A 12-34 cassette was not to my liking. But then again, if you want to climb mountains, you need the large size for lower gears.

You have done a good job vetting bikes. I agree with Specialized charging for the brand name. Giant and Fuji generally offer a bit more for your money.

I don't mean to be a jerk, but your budget is pretty generous and is in the range that there are decent road bikes available. While you said that the flat bar bikes felt better, please bear in mind that it takes some time to build up core muscles to be comfortable on a road bike. You are making a pretty big investment here and wish for you to purchase a bike that you will be happy with six months from now.
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Old 01-01-16, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by a1penguin View Post
This is important to do when comparing test rides. Also note that putting larger tires on the bike at lower pressure will provide more comfortable ride. You may want to consider the maximum tire size each bike can handle. Also, gearing may be different. Personally, I like the close spaced gear ratios of my road bike. A 12-34 cassette was not to my liking. But then again, if you want to climb mountains, you need the large size for lower gears.

You have done a good job vetting bikes. I agree with Specialized charging for the brand name. Giant and Fuji generally offer a bit more for your money.

I don't mean to be a jerk, but your budget is pretty generous and is in the range that there are decent road bikes available. While you said that the flat bar bikes felt better, please bear in mind that it takes some time to build up core muscles to be comfortable on a road bike. You are making a pretty big investment here and wish for you to purchase a bike that you will be happy with six months from now.
Not being "a jerk" at all. I think it is admirable that you and a few others are willing to come on the 'Hybrid' forum to advise those new to, or returning to, cycling what a terrible error they would be making by buying a bicycle with flat, as opposed to drop, bars.
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Old 01-01-16, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by badger1 View Post
Not being "a jerk" at all. I think it is admirable that you and a few others are willing to come on the 'Hybrid' forum to advise those new to, or returning to, cycling what a terrible error they would be making by buying a bicycle with flat, as opposed to drop, bars.
Did I say anything about drop bars? There are so many variations of bicycle handlebars out there which either put the rider's hands and wrists in a neutral position, offer 3 or more hand positions, or both, that it suprises me how many people settle for the flat bar, which offers one uncomfortable hand position.
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Old 01-01-16, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by a1penguin View Post
This is important to do when comparing test rides. Also note that putting larger tires on the bike at lower pressure will provide more comfortable ride. You may want to consider the maximum tire size each bike can handle. Also, gearing may be different. Personally, I like the close spaced gear ratios of my road bike. A 12-34 cassette was not to my liking. But then again, if you want to climb mountains, you need the large size for lower gears.

You have done a good job vetting bikes. I agree with Specialized charging for the brand name. Giant and Fuji generally offer a bit more for your money.

I don't mean to be a jerk, but your budget is pretty generous and is in the range that there are decent road bikes available. While you said that the flat bar bikes felt better, please bear in mind that it takes some time to build up core muscles to be comfortable on a road bike. You are making a pretty big investment here and wish for you to purchase a bike that you will be happy with six months from now.
And it takes a few hundred miles in the saddle to realize some of the limitations of flat bars.
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Old 01-01-16, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post

Any reason you decided on a flat bar? Though I know they are ubiquitous on inexpensive bikes, they are, IMO, among the least comfortable and versatile bars available. It isn't a big deal, as there are workarounds should you decide on something other than a flat bar in the future, but just wondering.
and IMO, they are the most comfortable, it depends on many factors.

Put a simple curved bar end extension on the end, and you have 3 hand positions. The same as on a drop bar, on the top next to the stem, around the corners, and on the hoods (I discount the drop position, as for anything other than blasting down a hill, I don't find it comfortable).



Originally Posted by level3 View Post
I tried out the drop bars on a friends bike last week for a bit. They're just not as comfortable to me. Maybe cuz I'm getting a little old. heh I liked riding the flat bar bike much more. I also felt more in control of the flat bar bike. As far as the Specialized Sirrus Comp... yeah... that bike is nice as well. I could add that to the list but it costs a little more for similar components. There wasn't a Sirrus at the shops I went by so I didn't get a chance to hop on one. I didn't consider the Crosstrail because I don't plan on taking the bike off the pavement for any period of time. I also looked at the Trek FX 7.4 disc. It's the only FX that comes standard with disc brakes. The other components on the FX 7.4 Disc are a little below the other bikes I have listed.
Agree with you.

Get what feels best to you, and what you will enjoy riding the most.

I have the luxury of having 2 drop bar road bikes and 3 flat bar road bikes to pick from, and much more often my flat bar bikes get ridden.

Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
Did I say anything about drop bars? There are so many variations of bicycle handlebars out there which either put the rider's hands and wrists in a neutral position, offer 3 or more hand positions, or both, that it suprises me how many people settle for the flat bar, which offers one uncomfortable hand position.
3 positions with the inclusion of a $20 set of curved bar end extensions.

Also not sure why you would characterize the primary position as "uncomfortable"?


Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
And it takes a few hundred miles in the saddle to realize some of the limitations of flat bars.
YMMV.

In my case, after thousands of miles over many years on drop bars and flat bars, I tend to prefer flat bars for most of the riding that I do - fitness rides alone or with 1 or 2 friends or family, generally 20-30 miles.
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Old 01-01-16, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
And it takes a few hundred miles in the saddle to realize some of the limitations of flat bars.
Huh. I've ridden 6-7000kms/year since re-starting cycling in 2002. That includes three imperial centuries -- done just because I felt like it -- and countless single rides in excess of 60 kms.

All of that has been on bicycles with either 9 degree sweep risers/no bar ends, or 5 degree sweep flat bars w/bar ends. The rather obvious absence of the drops position aside, I've yet to discover these alleged limitations.
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Old 01-01-16, 04:10 PM
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Whoa! It's a handlebar controversy! Haha. I'm sticking with the flat bars. I'm going to put some bar ends on it to give me a little flexibility. I test rode the Fuji, the Cannondale, the Giant, and a Trek FX 7.4. To be honest the Fuji Absolute felt the best to me. I felt the shifts were smoother and the seating position felt really good. I mean they all felt pretty good but to me the Fuji just felt a little better. I think I'm going with the 2015 Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE over the 2016 1.1. From what I can tell the 2015 LE has a better crankset, better brakes, better shifters, and I think a better wheelset. All for only a 100 bucks more. Anyways, I'm gonna mull which one of the 2 tonight and go get one tomorrow.

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Old 01-01-16, 04:16 PM
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Excellent - post up some pics of the new bike when you get it!
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Old 01-01-16, 04:50 PM
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I prefer drop bars now that I finally found one that fits to a tee. Flat bars to me for under 10 miles one way or 20 RT.

If I am on the road all day, the Synapse's riding position by a country mile. And lastly, that Synapse is one hell of a comfy ride even in good old tin can alloy!
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Old 01-01-16, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by a1penguin View Post

I agree with Specialized charging for the brand name. Giant and Fuji generally offer a bit more for your money.
That may be almost true in the road bike category, but I find the completely opposite to be true in practice in the hybrid market and given that LBSs never sell Specialized at MSRP, there is always a discount. It seems like a sales/marketing rumor that Trek salesmen like to promulgate. I shopped different brands of bikes extensively six months ago and that was what I found. For example, the local LBS sales manger claimed the Trek offered better components, but we sat down and compared, and it was close but it was also apparent the specialized bike had slightly better stuff for $100 less money. It seems like Specialized is in the sweet spot for components and performance for a given price. Giants offer a lot of bang for the money but they typically are heavy bikes. Giant dealers in my area are few and far between and stock very few bikes. Fuji has a bad rep in most areas of the US. I would consider them way off as far as value, but there are many here that like how they ride.

Bottom line is one need to test ride as it doesn't matter if a bike has slightly better components if the riding geometry does not fit.

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Old 01-01-16, 08:56 PM
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Agree with Coldcase. You wil alsol get more$ for a used Sirrus than a Fuji Absolute If you gonna sell it some day
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Old 01-02-16, 03:19 PM
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Went back to take one last look at the bikes today to decide what I would take home. Walked into Performance Bikes and they had put the 2105 Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE at an additional 20% for a New Years Sale. At this point it was a no brainer for me. I felt it was the most comfortable. It had the best components, and now it was the cheapest. Not only was the bike only 800 bucks now... I also got 80 bucks in savings for signing up for the "Buyer's Club" at the store. That costed 30 bucks. It gave me 10% back though in store credit. So all in all this bike was going to cost me was $750.00 Anyways, I slapped down the cash and bought it right then. As for resale value... sure. I could've bought the the Sirrus Comp Disc for $1100 with slightly lesser components but at $350 less for the Fuji... Is it going to sell for $350 more than the Fuji if I decide to sell it later on? Dunno. Regardless. I'm happy with what I chose. I like that this bike is completely blacked out. It looks and rides great. I just put 16 miles on it. heh Here's the list of components on this bike and pic.

Bottom Bracket: BSA threaded
Brakes: Shimano m355 hydraulic disc 160/160mm
Cassette: Shimano 105 CS-5800 11 Speed Cassette[/SIZE]Chain: KMC X11 w/ Missing Link, 11-speed
Crankset: Oval 520 compact, 50x34T chainrings
Fork: FC-770 carbon blade, alloy steerer w/ alloy dropouts
Frame: Main frame: Fuji A2-SL custom butted alloy w/ 1 1/8" semi-integrated headtube, internal shift cable routing; Rear triangle: Fuji A2-SL alloy w/ chainstay brake pivots, cold-forged dropouts and replaceable hanger
Front Derailleur: Shimano 105 5800
Grips/Tape: Oval Concepts P600 SLO Comfort, single lock-on
Handlebar: Oval Concepts 200, 6061 alloy, 31.8mm, 5 sweep, 0mm rise
Headset: FSA, 1 1/8" semi-integrated, caged bearings
Levers: Shimano M355 hydraulic
Pedals: Alloy platform
Rack Mounts: Rear rack
Rear Derailleur: Shimano 105 5800, 11-speed
Saddle: Oval Concepts 300 w/ steel rails
Seatpost: Oval Concepts 300, 3D-forged 6061 alloy, 27.2mm, double-bolt micro-adjust
Shifters: Shimano 105 5800 flat bar
Stem: Oval Concepts 313, 6061 3D-forged alloy, 31.8mm, +/- 12
Tires: Hutchinson Equinox, 700x25
Wheelset: Oval Concepts 527CX

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Old 01-02-16, 04:45 PM
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Thumbs up brother!

That is a sharp looking machine, and very well spec'd.


Performance Bike has some killer deals when you catch a clearance or sale - and the buyers club is a no-brainer when you make a big purchase!

Looking forward to a ride report!
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Old 01-02-16, 05:48 PM
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Great choice. I've had a Fuji Traverse for yrs and am very satisfied. Dollar for dollar they are a heck of a value and you're right about the components. Enjoy! And send in a report.
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Old 01-02-16, 06:46 PM
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Nice bike -- congratulations!
I also bought my Fuji Absolute from Performance Bike during one of their too-good-to-resist sales, and I've been very happy with it.
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Old 01-31-17, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by MRT2 View Post
And it takes a few hundred miles in the saddle to realize some of the limitations of flat bars.
Like what? I have a flat bar bike with bar ends and I have rode over 50 miles at a pop with no problems.
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Old 01-31-17, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by kshapero View Post
Like what? I have a flat bar bike with bar ends and I have rode over 50 miles at a pop with no problems.
Zombie thread alert. That said, interested to hear back from OP how things worked out.
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Old 02-11-17, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by level3 View Post
Went back to take one last look at the bikes today to decide what I would take home. Walked into Performance Bikes and they had put the 2105 Fuji Absolute 1.0 LE at an additional 20% for a New Years Sale. At this point it was a no brainer for me. I felt it was the most comfortable. It had the best components, and now it was the cheapest. Not only was the bike only 800 bucks now... I also got 80 bucks in savings for signing up for the "Buyer's Club" at the store. That costed 30 bucks. It gave me 10% back though in store credit. So all in all this bike was going to cost me was $750.00 Anyways, I slapped down the cash and bought it right then. As for resale value... sure. I could've bought the the Sirrus Comp Disc for $1100 with slightly lesser components but at $350 less for the Fuji... Is it going to sell for $350 more than the Fuji if I decide to sell it later on? Dunno. Regardless. I'm happy with what I chose. I like that this bike is completely blacked out. It looks and rides great. I just put 16 miles on it. heh Here's the list of components on this bike and pic.


Good choice. Actually any bike is a good choice if you use it. As to resale. Not many of us sell bikes. We collect them.
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