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Old 04-22-14, 09:21 AM   #1
DocZee
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Beginner biker looking for another wheelset

I am a complete newbie here when it comes to biking, other than the small amount of curb hopping I did as a child, I haven't touched one. I love the outdoors and camping and hiking and whatever I can get involved in when I am not on call or working. Anyways, I have purchased a relatively inexpensive Nishiki Alamosa, 26" wheels, 20" frame etc. I know it isn't the greatest bike, but for starters it will have to do until I am ready to get into it a little more serious (open to suggestions here for a next bike purchase). The long short is this: I am finding I do more road biking than trail for the moment, and want to buy a set of road wheels that I can put on my bike instead of killing myself with the off road tires I have now. I feel like I am working way harder than I have to and all these guys on their skinny wheel bikes are just flying by me. As far as I can tell it is not a disc brake setup and it is a 7 speed. I just want to be able to pop the current wheelset off and swap out for some slicks when I go on the bike trail nearby instead of the more gravelly trails. Any and all advice and guidance on this matter will be appreciated muchly!
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Old 04-22-14, 09:27 AM   #2
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In all honesty, Doc, you would be better served with a 700 sized bike, of he type of your choosing.
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Old 04-22-14, 09:40 AM   #3
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For the time being, just get new tires, as narrow as will fit the wheel, and slick. Then ride for a while and save up for a 700c road bike.
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Old 04-22-14, 09:48 AM   #4
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Instead of getting a full new wheel set to swap, just get road tires to fit the rims currently? And of course save for a 700 road bike?
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Old 04-22-14, 11:47 AM   #5
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My only advice is look on craigslist for a more road specific bike or hybrid - Different wheels on that bike you have now will not serve you much benefit.
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Old 04-22-14, 01:16 PM   #6
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If you like everything else about the bike, just get a set of decent hybrid tires suited for both pavement and "gravelly trails"?
The Kenda Kwicks are well suited for this:
Kenda Kwick Tire > Components > Tires and Tubes > Tires | Jenson USA Online Bike Shop

Another wheelset is a more expensive option as you'll need the wheels, tires, tubes, rim strips and a matching 7-speed cassette, the latter of these items possibly being difficult to find as 8-speed is sort of the standard minimum cassette these days.
For the cost of all that, it might be cheaper to find a used road bike on craigslist.
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Old 04-22-14, 04:57 PM   #7
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Okay awesome. Things I should have considered before originally purchasing the bike. Haha. I appreciate all the advice though, you all have been a tremendous help!! I will most likely keep the bike as a beginner trail bike and start looking into finding a more road suitable one. In the meantime though, any suggestions as to how to make my ride a little better despite it's mountain bike predisposition? Again, I really am new in the biking lifestyle I guess you could say so all of this has been very enlightening.
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Old 04-22-14, 06:07 PM   #8
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In the meantime, just slick tires. A separate wheelset would be a huge pain. You'd also need a cassette set up exactly the same way so you wouldn't have to adjust the derailleur every time you swapped wheels.
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Old 04-22-14, 06:13 PM   #9
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I've only been road biking for 6 or 7 years...an amazing thing, really, as years ago I swore I'd never be caught dead wearing spandex and riding skinny tires...yet I digress. My intro to road biking was on a GT Zum commuter (looks a lot like their triple-triangle-framed mountain bikes) w/ 26" wheels and the smoothest tires I could find. Even with that, I was getting left in the dust by old ladies on Trek 1000 road bikes, so I made the switch to a real road bike (used Trek) w/ 700c wheels and here I am now w/ my new Cannondale CAAD8 and a closet full of spandex and road jerseys...

What do you want to make "a little better" on your current bike?
Do you mean more comfortable or lighter or faster or...?
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