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Electricview 06-28-03 08:04 PM

Advice for beginner / very low cost bike..
Hello forum readers and posters! first let me apologize if i have the wrong forum, I couldn't decide if I should post here or the casual rider..

I am new to bicycling (tho i'm 24 i rode as a kid) and What my goal is to get some excercise.. I spend too much time in doors, so what i will mainly be doing is street riding.. I will probably on ocasion go over bumps and into some dirty/ small rocky trails.. nothing big or bad.. Anyways thast why i decided its a mountain bike i want.. (as well as a good 21 different gear positions).. Please excuse any mis used termonology i use as i'm new!

Here's my current situation, i went out and paid 229 for a diamondback comfort Wildwood 02 bike.. sure i probably got ripped off.. and after you finish laughing you can read on further why i'm posting :) I didnt know much about mountain bikes, it looked like more quality then the bike at the fred meyer! I originally only wanted to spend like 80 or 90 bucks for some bike that would work, my cousin recommend i go to the local sports store and get something a little more quality.. I walked out with the diamond back.. I wasn't aware its more of a old folks bike (my cousin teases me) becuase the seat has springs and a shock built into the seat pole.. the front forks have shocks too.. The bike rides pretty smoothly.. but its got a metal body and their website claims it weighs 32 pounds...

So my cousin came over to see it today and we went out and about just to look at other bikes.. anyways some stores have a few lower model bikes for around 279.. (even more then I've spent which in turn was more than I originally intended to spend) Anyways he went over some points which i find valid.. That getting one of these slightly more expensive bikes (I think one of them was a gary fisher wahoo? the other was a TREK?) anyways that one of these other bikes would be of much better quality, last me longer, and in turn be a found pounds lighter which would GREATLy increase my enjoyment of bicycling? I'm very skeptical that 2 to 4 pounds off the bike can really increase my enjoyment that much, but he assures me i will ride faster and be able to ride up hills a-lot easier..

I understand if you tied a 2 or 4 pound weight to me it would be a little harder for me to get up hils or to go in general, but i'm just wondering if that extra lightness of the bike will REALLY impact it to that degree.. I sorta like the looks of the diamond back as well as the cushy feeling the seat and front fork gives i'm growing a little attached to it as well as i'm not sure if i want to go through the hassle of returning it to buy another bike somewhere else.. (tho it is getting a wierd slight click problem that seems to be coming from either the pedal or the crank shaft area there whenever i am putting torque on it)...

So what i'm wondering is your guys opinion.. Mostly i'll do street riding.. and probably paved or mostly clean trails.. The 10 speed looking bikes with the super thin wheels never really appealed to me.. I definately wont be going over very harsh terrian, but an occasional excursion into some dirty area with gritty path is probably expected.. So i'm pretty sure I want to stick with a mountain bike design/tires..

Will getting one of these other brands make that much of a noticable difference to me? I wouldn't mind staying interested in bicycling and losing some pounds and i think its probably pretty good excercise.. I dont see myself riding 20 miles every day.. and I dont think i'll be upgrading the bike much .. There is a posisblity i could get bored with the whole thing and the bike might just sit on my deck for years after that.. I dont want that to happen.. my cousin insists if i get a lighter bike and can go faster and have less resistance and takle hills easier that it will make it more enjoyable for me and keep me interested..

I dont disagree that an aluminum frame and lighter weight are appealing.. I just thought i'd get your guyses opinions..

also please feel free to recommend bikes, i'd DEFINATELY like to stay under 300, but since i'm considering the 279.99 for some of the bikes up here.. i guess i'm willing to go that high.. I originally wasn't.. but i guess i got wooed by the diamond back... looks mean a little to me, i like the nice grey blue paintjob of my diamond back, i wasn't thrilled with the dark green paintjob of the gary fisher.. (i think thats what the name was)... Suggestions are greatly welcomed.. I'm sorry for being such a 'newbie' but i didnt know where else to go for good advice...

thanks in advance any of you who read through this HUGE long post..

Dannihilator 06-28-03 11:16 PM

Don't worry about it, people won't laugh. If you want to make the thing lighter, a start will be to remove the reflectors if you don't plan on riding at night. Another suggestion is to change the handlebars, it's an easy replacement. By changing the bars, you'll lose about 2 pounds. Next piece that can be lightened is the seatpost, very simple, just make sure you get the correct seatpost width.

mister_hl 06-29-03 12:44 AM

Hi there...

You may want to do a search on this site for bike suggestions.

I was in the same price range / usage as you are when I was looking for my bike.

For about $300 USD ($400 CAD)...these were the bikes I considered / looked at:

Specialized HardRock CrMo
Specialized HardRock
Norco Scrambler
Trek 820
Gary Fisher Advance

I ended up going with the first one on the list, as it was most comforable for me and within the price range.

Electricview 06-29-03 02:46 AM

Thanks guys for the suggestions so far! So it sounds like the first reply says i can probably make the bike i have lighter without having to buy another one? tho I am wondering if getting another one with the aluminum body will be more advantagous as apposed to the steel body this one has now..

The second reply, I will look at those bikes and see what I can come up with!

Do you guys know the diamondback wildwood? is it agreed thats it a pretty weak bike for the price i paid? (at 32 pounds that is)...
(i guess i jumped into buying it without researching...)

Hunter 06-29-03 06:42 AM

The important thing is that you get a bike that fits you, and your riding style the best. If you are not going to be a full on MTB then you do not require one. From what you are describing a hybrid, or comfort bike is more up your alley which is what you choose anyway. I am familiar with the Diamondback, and for your application see nothing wrong with it.
It is also truw that if you wish to shed some weight off loose the reflectors all around. Loosing the wheel reflectors will also aid in the wheels rolling more round. They will not have a odd weight on it to do otherwise. The suspension seatpost is great if you value comfort to the extreme, IMHO with a spring seat it is not needed but you may see it another way. Anyhow it will drop some more weight, there as well. In the future think of adding toe clips. This will make peddaling more efficient.

PeterG1185 06-29-03 09:14 AM

$300 wont get you much. Basically just find the one with the best frame and fit since the components on any of'em will be crap

Electricview 06-29-03 06:55 PM

Its tempting a little more each day to keep the bike i have, it sounds like it might be whats right for me.. Tho i'm still concerned with that 'click' sound i get each time the left pedal reaches the top and i put torq on it.. is there something i should look at/ for to see what the culprit is? I didnt notice it a day ago..

Thanks again for all your advice guys.. i'm not positive on what i'm going to do yet, but i think i might just keep this one..

oh yea the kickstand is still on it, so i should probably take that off and maybe it will loose half a pound :)

Maelstrom 06-29-03 07:30 PM

Get a mech to check could be many things. Chain rubbing the front deraileur when you torque it at the right time. Bottom bracket coming loose a bit, crank loosening.

(in a really slow voice) a kickstand? ;)

Scooby Snax 06-30-03 05:42 AM

I think thats cruel, its as bad as giving a dog hot water to drink.

To think, stangling a bikes chainstays with a kickstand!! how, uncivilized!!


troie 06-30-03 08:14 AM

Electric, take a look at the Specialized and Trek line. I bought the Specialized HardRock (I actually traded in a Diamondback Outlook) and I am very very happy with it! The Trek 4300 sells for around $300 which is more of a really good urban bike. The HardRock frame (from what lbs says) is more of a mtb frame than the Trek is.

Most ppl will tell you to get a bike that fits you best. What are your vitals? i.e. height and weight.

When I first got the HardRock it was at an even 30 pounds. After slight mods, I have it down to 26 :)

Definitely go for test-rides and see what you like. You dont want to be stuck with a bike that you dont like simply because it was inexpensive.

good luck.

RobertTank 06-30-03 08:38 AM

<<Hello forum readers and posters! first let me apologize if i have the wrong forum, I couldn't decide if I should post here or the casual rider..

I am new to bicycling (tho i'm 24 i rode as a kid) and What my goal is to get some excercise.. I spend too much time in doors, so what i will mainly be doing is street riding.. I will probably on ocasion go over bumps and into some dirty/ small rocky trails.. nothing big or bad.. Anyways thast why i decided its a mountain bike i want.. (as well as a good 21 different gear positions).. Please excuse any mis used termonology i use as i'm new!

Here's my current situation, i went out and paid 229 for a diamondback comfort Wildwood 02 bike.. >>

My advice is cheap but is based on 60 years of living. Use what you have until it won't do what you want. There are tons of better bikes out there and there are many who want to tell you that you can't use what you already have. But look what you said --- You are new to biking (don't really know what works or not, what you want to do with it, whether you will stick with it, etc etc.) You are already over your budget (so now you want to spend even more?)

Get out an ride. ride. ride. Enjoy what you have.

Just my thoughts

joeprim 06-30-03 10:19 AM

You got this one ride it experiment with it if you want, but ride, ride, ride you can always by stuff later.


Electricview 06-30-03 06:37 PM

Thanks guys.. to answer about my vitals i'm about 5'7 and about 195 pounds..(trying to loose some of that weight)....

This bike i have now seems to work okay for me, Sure i can hardly make it up any hills right now, but i think thats partly cuz i'm out of shape and a little overweight not so much becuase the bike is 4 pounds heavier then the model at the nearest bike store..

Thats part of what i'm trying to find out tho, if buying that 4 pound lighter bike will make it easier for me to enjoy riding.. My cousin who was giving me advice was greatly advising me to get the trek or other bikes becuase they are lighter, have better parts, and will make my enjoyment of riding even more (saying things like i'll go faster with a lighter bike and have more fun not having to work as hard to get the bike moving as fast since its lighter)..

The clicking problem on this bike is making me a little weary about my purchase.. If i have to take it a bike shop and pay 40 bucks to get it repaired then i might as well cash it in and buy the more expensive bike since it was about 40 bucks more expensive..

The bike we looked at , at a local store was the TREK 4100 i think, it was 279.99 not too bad of a price, not sure what the difference is under the 4300? which is 319.00 still again more and more money.. it doesnt list their weights tho..there is some 'specialized' brands here that i didnt neccessarily notice when i went in...

HEre's the link to their webpage
I hope its okay to post links, i'm not advertising i'm kind of asking what you guys think on their list is best to get for around/under 300 bucks.. When i sat on a medium 18 inch gary fisher bike it was touching my crotch area so i think that might be a little tall for me?

EDIT: the above link just links to all their bike types, i was looking under the mountain bike with front shocks (no rear).. and i also noticed their comfort bikes section.. I guess it would seem stupid to take my bike back for a comfort bike of another brand, but maybe that would be worth it too? After looking at some of the mountain bikes i kinda dont like how far foward the handle bars seat you.. I dont want to have back or neck aches after riding..

I guess more advice is needed as what i may be after.
Another thing about my current bike i dont like is that after i adjusted the neck/handle bars it now makes creaking noises when i'm putting torque on the handle bars (standing and pedaling hard).. which is another reason mayeb i should get a higher quality name/brand.. ie trek or specialized instead of diamondback.

Electricview 07-04-03 05:45 PM

Sorry to rivive this thread, after spending a few hours at the bike shop.... I found that a mountain bike was pretty uncomfortable to my wrists area after about 2 or 3 minutes, they got very fatigued, i realized that after a while of riding this would probably diminish as i built up a resistance i think i've decided to get either a hybrid or a comfort bike..

I'm eyeing the 7200 which is alot higher in my price range then i wanted to go (they have it for 379.99 is this an okay deal?) its the 17.5 size and it has those bigger tires that are thinner almost like a roadbikes, and they are alot higher air pressure.. I found that i could feel the road more with this bike, but i also found that with coasting alone, it was able to go much farther then a mountain bike, and at least measurably farther than a comfort bike.. i'm just not sure if its worth the extra 150 bones for this bike over say .. a ... specialized expidition cro mo they had on sale for 219.99 (from 260.99) or the 60 bones more than trek navigator 200....

The ride seemed a bit smoother on the comfort bikes, as well as they are cheaper, tho i think they have more of an old huffy bike feeling with their very high handle bars.. where as the 7200 feels a tiny bit lower / closer to a mountain bike file, while still having a pretty upright riding stance..

your opinions on these bikes? is the 7200 gonna be that much of a faster/further/easier ride than the 2 comfort models i mentioned? (they had a navigator 300 but it was 399.99 and i didnt really feel it was worth the extra money over the 200)..

Thanks you guys i Really appreciate it!

cidmort 07-05-03 06:11 PM

Get a hardrock

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