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Looking for help on the right bike for a senior.

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Looking for help on the right bike for a senior.

Old 10-25-17, 12:31 PM
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Looking for help on the right bike for a senior.

I am a senior looking for input on a reasonably priced (>$400) bike to use as part of strengthening regimen after double hip replacement. I am 5'10" and 240 lbs. and fairly strong, but haven't been on a bike in many years. Most of my riding will be on the street but we also have some well-maintained trails in the area I would like to try. My research points to a hybrid or a 29er. What features are most important for me and what makers are likely to offer the best fit for me?
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Old 10-25-17, 12:46 PM
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Welcome, Chef. I think a comfort-oriented hybrid is likely going to be the best match for you, but I would encourage you to try out a number of bikes at one of your local bike shops. I don't know the details of your hip replacement, but you might consider step-through type frames that don't require a leg extension up over the bike seat.

In terms of features, you're likely going to find bikes in this price range to be fairly similarly-equipped. Most will have a crankset with three chain rings in the front and likely either a 7-speed freewheel or an 8-speed cassette in the back. Most folks like trigger shifters (as opposed to twist shifters or grip shifters), but that's 100% a personal preference thing. I would recommend something with larger tires for comfort (generally, the larger the tire, the less air pressure you need in it to maintain good rolling resistance).

Bikes like the Trek Verve, Specialized Crossroads, and Specialized Roll are probably good places to start. These have upright geometry, pretty wide tires, and are available in step-through frames if you'd like that. There are many other hybrid models from which to choose, but I suggest those as good places to start your search. Most bike shops will carry one or both of those brands, and you usually have a pretty good selection in terms of frame sizes and types.
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Old 10-25-17, 04:10 PM
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My first bike that I bought about 5 years ago after being off a bike for several decades was a Jamis Citizen1. It's in the $400 range with a couple more expensive models. It fits in with what hokiefyd described above, and very comfy. But it is a heavy steel bike at about 35 lbs. I got it because I did not want to spend a lot of money at first, and wanted to make sure I would continue cycling. I'm now on my third bike. I still own it and still like to do some rides around some neighborhoods. And, it still gives my legs a good workout.

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Old 10-25-17, 07:40 PM
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The Giant Cypress is also a hybrid bike worth looking at and within your price range. I started on one after more than 20 years of not riding a bike. It was a great choice for getting back on the bike.
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Old 10-26-17, 12:48 PM
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You must find out what brands your neighborhood shop sells , a lot of brands target your $400 price point..

that's about the decent bike entry price these days, in independent bike shops , and the various brands want a slice of the sales ..

Go Out... Test Ride bikes, in Person .. Audition several bike shops if you have more than one.

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Old 10-31-17, 05:22 AM
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Can't add much other than to say everyone has given you pretty solid advice.
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Old 10-31-17, 03:19 PM
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The only way to pick a bike from scratch is to ride a bunch.
I'm 58 years old , degenerative arthritis , bad spine , I bought a giant roam 3 to get back into riding.
I thought it was a good fit , but then I procured and old Trek 700 Multitrack.
The slightly more upright position and soft steel frame felt better to me than the roam3.
After fiddling with bar height and seat position , the trek is much more comfortable for me.
Now I'm a pretty small (light) guy with long legs so a taller bike is easy to handle.
If you're 240 lbs , a bike like the trek with 36 spoke wheels would be more durable over time than a 32 spoke wheel.
The Trek also has a 170mm crankset as opposed to the Giants 175mm crankset.
This makes a difference in the amount of leg travel per revolution as I turn the pedals.
I found the 170mm was more comfortable after say 20 miles than the longer crank.
So we're back to ride a bunch of bikes , make sure the shop sets the seat height properly for you , and take a good long test ride.
As we get older , fit is very important , lower handlebars are harder to reach , neck won't bend up very well.
When you find a bike that doesn't hurt after 5 minutes , take a good long ride and see if you get cramped up or hands go numb , etc.
I have to ride with my bars a couple inches higher than the seat , you may need something similar for your physical shape and age.
It's worth getting it right , be patient and methodical , you will really enjoy the final choice when you're done.
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Old 11-06-17, 08:18 PM
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1. Marin Larkspur cs2

2. Marin Stinson

3. Electra townie 21d or 7d.
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Old 11-08-17, 12:43 PM
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Good advice and many good choices already given. I just wanted to say no matter what you buy, it will take many adjustments to get everything just right. I adjusted my seat height 3 times as well as the forward /back position a few times. Also adjusted everything on the handlebars a couple times (shifter position, hand grip position, brakes position, bar ends position). These adjustments may be minor (1/2 an inch here, 1/4 inch there) but can make a big difference in comfort. Its a lot of trial an error but worth it in the long run. Soreness in different muscles or your butt or your hands are a clue to make adjustments to see if it helps.
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