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What Starter Road Bike Is Recommended?

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

What Starter Road Bike Is Recommended?

Old 06-12-20, 12:49 PM
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GreatFawn
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What Starter Road Bike Is Recommended?

I am just getting into road cycling and don't yet own my own bike. Since I am a beginner I don't want to spend over $500.00. Any recommendations on what type of bike to get, or where to find bikes in that price range?
I am keeping on eye on FB marketplace and Craigslist too.
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Old 06-12-20, 01:06 PM
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I'd go to a bike shop and see what they have that is in your budget and calls to you. And since your price range is on the low end, ask them what they'd charge if you decided to go with a new bike you find online and need to have it put together and adjusted.

You can get bikes with some of the components being considered better quality new online at places like bikes direct and others. But if your local shop has a bike you like for the price you like then why not develop a relationship with them. Many have given me more than I have given them. Just need to see them often and chat them up.

Used bikes can be a blessing and curse for novices. It's a toss up. Especially if you don't already have experience servicing, adjusting and just knowing when something is worn out on a bike.


New inventory is low... or at least it was a few weeks ago. I'd still be careful in the used market. Remember the seller wants to sell the bike. So they may avoid some things they should have been honest about.
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Old 06-12-20, 01:10 PM
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$500 will not buy a roadbikes from a bike shop

You may need to up the budget. The problem with going too low end is that if the bike you pick is a heap of junk you will not enjoy riding it
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Old 06-12-20, 01:44 PM
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If you have a decent understanding of bike maintenance/repair, I'd look in the used market. If you don't, check out bikesdirect.com. That is about the only place I can think of where you can find something for $500 or less new. If you can increase your budget a few hundred, you can look at the entry level Giant or one of the other major manufacturers.
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Old 06-12-20, 01:53 PM
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For what it's worth, bikes are the new toilet paper and no store has anything under $500.
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Old 06-12-20, 06:41 PM
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I agree with others. You're not getting on the road for $500 if you go to a bike shop.

If you give us your height/weight and general craigslist area, we can possibly point out some bikes with potential that might keep you within your budget.

It's also worth mentioning that you're going to need to budget some $$ for additional stuff you're going to want/need (padded shorts, helmet, under-seat repair kit, and various other bits that will add up as you discover that you need/want them) So, realistically, if your short-term budget is $500, you're probably looking for a <$325 used bike.
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Old 06-12-20, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
For what it's worth, bikes are the new toilet paper
Except nobody will be selling their old hardly used toilet paper next season.
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Old 06-12-20, 07:56 PM
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Double your budget and take a look at https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/road_bikes.htm
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Old 06-13-20, 05:14 PM
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My son recently purchased a Motobecane Mirage S and absolutely loves it. Great deal, looks awesome, delivered right to his doorstep. Cant beat the price.
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Old 06-14-20, 01:15 PM
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I disagree about not being able to get a road bike at a shop for $500. There were several at the Specialized shop I was in yesterday. But I guess if sales tax has to be included and the buyer is firm on not going a penny over, then I might be wrong.
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Old 06-14-20, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
I disagree about not being able to get a road bike at a shop for $500. There were several at the Specialized shop I was in yesterday. But I guess if sales tax has to be included and the buyer is firm on not going a penny over, then I might be wrong.
The cheapest new allez is $875 MSRP



What did you see for under $500? Was it a left over 47cm size from 2006?
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Old 06-14-20, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Tacoenthusiast View Post
The cheapest new allez is $875 MSRP



What did you see for under $500? Was it a left over 47cm size from 2006?
I don't know that is was a Specialized. I was just over there wasting time after dropping off my bike for service. It was a new something or other with drop bars and looked nice for anyone in that price range. This was 425 bucks. Might have been a model year old, but NOS is still new enough.

And yes it was a smaller frame. Something about the size my 5' 2" wife could ride. If I could only get her out of the mind set that she has to have a step through.

If I remember, I'll look when I go back, but as nice as it looked for the price, it probably will be gone. Although the COVID virus has been a boon to most bike shops, it's left many with much of their inventory sold and little hope of getting more anytime soon.

Last edited by Iride01; 06-14-20 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 06-14-20, 03:51 PM
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First find someone local that is a bike nut. Then have him help you find a good used bike on Ebay or Craigslist. In general you can land some pretty good deals this way. No $500 new bike is going to suit your purpose. Most areas have bike clubs but be careful that they know what kind of riding you want to do and what you may graduate to.
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Old 06-15-20, 06:47 AM
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Save the 500.00. Save another 500.00-1000.00 and add them together. 1000-1500 gives a real bike and worth the wait.
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Old 06-15-20, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by znomit View Post
Except nobody will be selling their old hardly used toilet paper next season.
Somebody in foo said they haven't bought new toilet paper in 20 years. I didn't even know people bought it used!
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Old 06-15-20, 05:23 PM
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You’ll get much better value asking this question on the Classic & Vintage forum. $500 will go much further there.
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Old 06-17-20, 01:00 AM
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Originally Posted by GreatFawn View Post
I am just getting into road cycling and don't yet own my own bike. Since I am a beginner I don't want to spend over $500.00. Any recommendations on what type of bike to get, or where to find bikes in that price range?
I am keeping on eye on FB marketplace and Craigslist too.
There aren’t a lot of new road bike options at $500, but I would recommend targeting shops that have some used inventory or consignment. eBay is also an option but selection may be in the 10 year or older range, so you’d need to be ok with that. Just set your filters to weed out the unwanted.
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Old 06-17-20, 02:45 PM
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I recently sold my Specialized Allez Comp with 105 Groupset for $450 on FB marketplace. This was a great starter bike - see if you can find something like this in your local area. If it turns out you don't like it, you can sell it for nearly what you paid.


Last edited by CerveloS5; 06-17-20 at 02:59 PM.
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Old 06-18-20, 05:21 PM
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aaaaand OP never returns.
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Old 06-18-20, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by goenrdoug View Post
aaaaand OP never returns.
OP may not be into hanging around and chatting with us.
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Old 06-18-20, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by GreatFawn View Post
I am just getting into road cycling and don't yet own my own bike. Since I am a beginner I don't want to spend over $500.00. Any recommendations on what type of bike to get, or where to find bikes in that price range?
I am keeping on eye on FB marketplace and Craigslist too.
Good for you on buying used as that is best because it really might not suit you and no sense being out of a lot of money. Use to see this phenomenon in golf.....new guy buys $1500 set of Calloway's and goes about three times and sells same set on CL for $400! Great buy for someone who plays but the guy lost his rear......same with bikes.

I would look to a well maintained aluminum relaxed geometry bike with Shimano 105 full gearing. Great setup and usually had for fairly good prices from what I have seen when peruzzing the ads.
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Old 06-18-20, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Bah Humbug View Post
OP may not be into hanging around and chatting with us.
He may have found his bike and busy riding like he stole it....LOL
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Old 06-18-20, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by GreatFawn View Post
I am just getting into road cycling and don't yet own my own bike. Since I am a beginner I don't want to spend over $500.00. Any recommendations on what type of bike to get, or where to find bikes in that price range?
I am keeping on eye on FB marketplace and Craigslist too.
A friend just bought a secondhand Giant Defy 2 from his brother for your budget.

I think your best bet is to find someone local selling a bike, around 3-5yrs old, aluminum, nothing fancy... and negotiate with cash in hand.
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Old 06-19-20, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Germanrazor View Post
Good for you on buying used as that is best because it really might not suit you and no sense being out of a lot of money. Use to see this phenomenon in golf.....new guy buys $1500 set of Calloway's and goes about three times and sells same set on CL for $400! Great buy for someone who plays but the guy lost his rear......same with bikes.

I would look to a well maintained aluminum relaxed geometry bike with Shimano 105 full gearing. Great setup and usually had for fairly good prices from what I have seen when peruzzing the ads.

Exactly what I'm thinking on this. The OP is MIA, but this question is common.

The person thinking of getting into bicycling, may have a change of heart once they are out riding, in the wind, rain, heat, humidity. Most of us are nuts anyway This is the best way to get a newer bike, someone who over purchased and decided it was not for them. Heck, my wife was wanting to get into bicycling, but wanted a cruiser, so we picked up a new Schwinn. Well that was 4 years ago, and she rode it 3 times. Crashed once, so that didn't help.

So, OP. I would suggest going to a bike shop, find out what sized bike you need to be looking for, and start your shopping there. The bike shops I have been in recently have very little stock on hand, so this may be a problem. Finding the right size will help you enjoy your new hobby and have you dreaming of your next ride. The deals on CL and Facebook are there, just keep looking.

Last edited by kermie; 06-19-20 at 07:19 AM.
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Old 06-19-20, 07:04 AM
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I am still very new to serious cycling. My first "road bike" came from Academy Sports (private labeled Kent) for $250.
I learned a few things and after about 100 miles realized this bike was not going to hold up to any serious cycling miles.

Being that this was during the COVID lockdown time I was able to capitalize on that and sold the bike for what I paid for it on FB Marketplace within 30 minutes.

I turned around and went to my LBS and the only thing available that would fit me was a Trek Domane AL2. To be perfectly honest I was not looking to get a carbon frame and I saw no reason to spend on a disc brake setup (very flat here and I won't be riding in the rain often). I was actually hoping for a Domane AL3 for the slightly better groupset, but I took what I could get. The Claris groupset is very smooth compared to the garbage Tourney I came from but I really would like an extra gear (or two) when riding in a pace line.

Overall I am very happy with the ride of my aluminum Domane and I know it will only get better when I upgrade tires in the future. I can really see it being a long term bike with upgrades along the way. I'm not looking to really race, I'm in it for fitness.
in the near future I foresee a lot of used bikes flooding the market as people that just bought them during stay at home orders stop riding and look to move them from garages.
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