Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Road Cycling
Reload this Page >

How do you test ride bikes?!?!?!

Notices
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

How do you test ride bikes?!?!?!

Old 07-27-02, 10:35 PM
  #1  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Taichung
Posts: 203
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 2 Posts
How do you test ride bikes?!?!?!

So I'm in the market for a new ride, although I'm not rushing into things. Although I have always dreamed of riding a Colnago or Coppi Alu galaxy, I don't have quite that much $. I've been looking at more domestic models like Specialized E5 SLX comp, Giant TCR1, and Cannondale R2000 (mostly ultegra equipped models). (and figuring they would be more common to test ride) And to my suprise ALL the shops I call that deal with these brands NEVER have the frames or complete bikes in stock...let along have them for test rides. And I literally called every shop that deals these brands within a 70 mile radius.

Every time i hear "we don't have those in stock", "all the 2002 models are mostly gone", "we don't have test bikes for that brand"

My question is...everyone always says "make sure you test a bike before you get it.."

And most say "yeah, i test rode that one, that one, oh, and that one, before i made the decision for that one"

How do you guys get these test rides??? or is it just from other riders you know who happen to have that bike???

I found only one place near me that demo's bikes...but they are Trek, and honestly i don't want a trek. so i'm just curious as to where you guys have test ridden bikes??? i live in northern NJ, about an hour outside of NYC, with quite a few shops around, but none that fit the bill...help! haha
Coppi51 is offline  
Old 07-28-02, 09:29 AM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
Richard Cranium's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Rural Missouri - mostly central and southeastern
Posts: 3,007

Bikes: 2003 LeMond -various other junk bikes

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 77 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 41 Times in 33 Posts
Great question. Wish I knew the answer.

I think the descriptions and details the magazine's publish aren't very helpful because the characteristics descibed are only relevent to what YOU are "used to".

I would think fit and frame geometry could be confirmed as negative or positve. But I have never ridden a test bike long enough to really "know" if it's the bike for me. I just go by the specs/per dollar ratio etc.

Hope you find what you want.
Richard Cranium is offline  
Old 07-29-02, 06:33 PM
  #3  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Taichung
Posts: 203
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 2 Posts
so no one else has EVER test ridden a bike?
Coppi51 is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 07:06 AM
  #4  
Sneaky Slow
 
pgreene's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Greenville, SC
Posts: 398
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
i test rode mine before i got it. it amounted to hammering laps around the parking lot, but it was something. seems like a shop that's worth its salt would let anyone who was about to drop over $1000 on something take it out for a spin. sorry to hear about your problem. i've no solution.
pgreene is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 07:18 AM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
H20.1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Washington, DC/ Köln, Germany
Posts: 584

Bikes: Bianchi, Olmo

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Ive never been to a shop you couldnt test ride at. When I bought my new bianchi I test rode both it (veloce) and their vigorelli model...many shops may not have 2002 models left in the bike you want. The 2003s arrive pretty soon.

Still it can be frustrating, I only found 2 shops in the DC metro area that stock Bianchis....
H20.1 is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 07:26 AM
  #6  
NOT a weight weenie
 
Hunter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,762
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I let my customer's test what ever it is they want. There ia a park about two blocks from the street, with some descent hills a creek sand etc. Good enough to test a MTB. For road bikes the street in front of the sho to the end intersection is about a mile then turn left and go back to the shop and you would complete 2+ I have had no complaints yet.
Hunter is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:15 AM
  #7  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 48
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I too was able to test ride several makes and models at various bike shops throughout Chicago. One common problem I ran into was that the particular model I was interested was not built in my size. However, to get a good feel for the fit and geometry the shops always had a comparable model built in the size I was looking for. For instance, I wanted to test ride the Lemond Buenos Aires, but the shop only had the Alpe' De Huez built in my size. But same frame, geometry, etc. gave me a good enough estimate of the feel of the Buenos Aires.

At a minimum the shop should give you a time period to test your new bike and return it if the fit, feel, etc. isn't quite right. A couple shops in Chicago offered a 30 day guarantee on the bike fitting. Of course they only accepted an exchange not a money back return.

Good luck in your search.
jlisota is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:25 AM
  #8  
Junior Member
 
Guillermo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Chicago
Posts: 337
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Jlisota:

PM me if you have a chance. I would be interested in hearing about your experiences at the bike shops around Chicago, and which one you chose.

Thanks,

Dax
Guillermo is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:42 AM
  #9  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: England
Posts: 12,948
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 7 Times in 7 Posts
When I was looking for a touring bike I test rode a 26" wheel expedition touring bike. I was impressed with all the new-fangled index gearing and the stiffness of the frame, but the bike was too sluggish without its full load, so I passed on it.
The bike I did buy came a s a frameset which the shop built-up, so no test ride was possible, but the shop was confident enough to let me decide after they had built it.

Every bike feels different, but not neccessarily better or worse. It can take me a while to get accustomed to the handling of a new bike.
MichaelW is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 10:03 AM
  #10  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Mississippi Gulf Coast
Posts: 94
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I've test-ridden the last three or four bikes I bought.

The latest one was a Fuji Roubaix-Pro I bought at Jack Johnston's Bicycles in Dallas. The shop has access to White Rock Lake right behind it.

At first, they put me on an expensive, aluminum Cannondale which was a terrific deal price-wise.

The test ride told me otherwise. The bike just didn't feel right to me.

The steel Roubaix-Pro rode like a dream. I felt at home on it. Maybe the price range clicked in with the ride sensation too. It came together for me.

I don't know what to say about your situation near New York. Maybe someone else can recommend a specific bike shop.

Check the fujibikes.com web site. Maybe you can find a dealer near you that will let you ride one. Check out the Roubaix-Pro (Shimano 105, $1500) or the Marseilles (same Reynolds 853 frame with Ultegra, $1900). Or check their less expensive bikes. Or find a 2002 model for less money. Even their cheapest bikes are good.

condor
condor is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 10:09 AM
  #11  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Taichung
Posts: 203
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 2 Posts
Thanks for the replies guys...i'm gonna keep looking for shops hehe
Coppi51 is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 10:18 AM
  #12  
Senior Member
 
H20.1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Washington, DC/ Köln, Germany
Posts: 584

Bikes: Bianchi, Olmo

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally posted by condor
I've test-ridden the last three or four bikes I bought.

The latest one was a Fuji Roubaix-Pro I bought at Jack Johnston's Bicycles in Dallas. The shop has access to White Rock Lake right behind it.

At first, they put me on an expensive, aluminum Cannondale which was a terrific deal price-wise.

The test ride told me otherwise. The bike just didn't feel right to me.

The steel Roubaix-Pro rode like a dream. I felt at home on it. Maybe the price range clicked in with the ride sensation too. It came together for me.

I don't know what to say about your situation near New York. Maybe someone else can recommend a specific bike shop.

Check the fujibikes.com web site. Maybe you can find a dealer near you that will let you ride one. Check out the Roubaix-Pro (Shimano 105, $1500) or the Marseilles (same Reynolds 853 frame with Ultegra, $1900). Or check their less expensive bikes. Or find a 2002 model for less money. Even their cheapest bikes are good.

condor
A Roubaix pro can usually be had for US$1299, sometimes less.
H20.1 is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 11:18 AM
  #13  
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Any shop that does not let you test ride thouroughly is not one I would recommend. I work at a bike shop and we let customers test any bike they wish. Unfortunately we're located on a very busy highway so they only have the parking lot.
Whenever I've test rode bikes at other bike shops, they ask for my license and say 'see you later'.
avivino is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 07:22 PM
  #14  
Donating member
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Central NJ
Posts: 39
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Not sure where in northern NJ you are, but I can give you a few recommendations if you haven't already checked them out. You might try High Gear Cyclery in Stirling or CycleWorks in Byram Township. I bought my Trek at High Gear back in 1999 and was able to test ride it--they're a great shop, too. My son's mountain bike team is sponsored by CycleWorks and they carry Giant and Cannondale bikes. The guys at CycleWorks are the best, especially when it comes to customer service. They also have one of the best bicycle mechanics in NJ (he's also part owner of the shop). They're a model bicycle shop as far as I'm concerned.

Sue

Last edited by Trek2Kgirl; 07-30-02 at 07:58 PM.
Trek2Kgirl is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 08:49 PM
  #15  
Closet Bike-a-holic
 
tourist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Way North of 635
Posts: 823

Bikes: '02 Cannondale R700 Road Warrior

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Again I don't know where in NJ exactly you are, but there's a great bike shop in Easton, PA that will let you test ride (or used to) called Genisis Bikes. Right over the bridge on Route 22W
__________________
The road don't go nowhere, stays right where it is.

www.friscocycling.com

www.hopefellowship.net
tourist is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:18 PM
  #16  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally posted by Coppi51
Thanks for the replies guys...i'm gonna keep looking for shops hehe
If you're willing to come to Brooklyn, NY for a test ride...I can recommend two great shops.

One is Roy's Sheepshead Cycles located on Coney Island Avenue and Avenue X. Speak to either Scotty or Keith. I brought 3 bikes from them in the past 3 months. Although I never test ridden any bikes they had, I'm sure they'll be more than happy to let you take a ride.

Another shop is Bay Ridge Bikes (don't remember the name...sorry). They're located on the 90's (street) and 3rd Avenue. Speak to Patrice (she's the owner), and she'll just push bikes at you to test ride.

Both shops know what they're doing and have a HUGE selection of low/mid/top end bikes. Good luck.
Cadd is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:30 PM
  #17  
Don't Believe the Hype
 
RiPHRaPH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: chicagoland area
Posts: 2,668

Bikes: 1999 Steelman SR525, 2002 Lightspeed Ultimate, 1988 Trek 830, 2008 Scott Addict

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 21 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
geez, cadd.....that brings back memories. i grew up in sheapshead bay all lived all around brooklyn and queens...i remember when kings plaza was built... anyway.....

i am a 56-57cm fit (fairly common) - so my shop happened to have a mechanic who let me ride his custom vs. some floor models. i have also traded with people for a few miles on centuries (also cleats are limiting)

but my shop, Higher Gear brought out 4 very different bikes from their other shop specifically so i could ride 'em each for a while. i tested all materials and geometries. i was lucky, but i do know some of the limitations.
RiPHRaPH is offline  
Old 07-30-02, 09:41 PM
  #18  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
When WAS Kings Plaza built? It changed a lot now...it used to be a dump, but they recently remodelled the entire mall and it looks pretty decent now. And they're charging $2 for parking. Geez. Welcome back to Bklyn
Cadd is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 07:15 AM
  #19  
Don't Believe the Hype
 
RiPHRaPH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: chicagoland area
Posts: 2,668

Bikes: 1999 Steelman SR525, 2002 Lightspeed Ultimate, 1988 Trek 830, 2008 Scott Addict

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 21 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Kings Plaza was built, i want to say.... in 1973 or so. i was just a kid, but we used to go there all the time and wait for my dad come off the Belt Parkway. I saw it a few years ago and the nice part near the marina was all shoddy. I was born in Memonidias (???) hospital and lived on Ave X for many years. I also lived up near Newkirk Plaza, east 18th st and foster ave.


just to type some thing about bikes..... i'm going on a ride now!!!
RiPHRaPH is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 07:16 AM
  #20  
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 36
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Cyclecraft on rt. 46 in Parsipany, NJ
They have a certified Sorratta fit guy.
avivino is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 09:09 AM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
lotek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: n.w. superdrome
Posts: 17,688

Bikes: 1 trek, serotta, rih, de Reus, Pogliaghi and finally a Zieleman! and got a DeRosa

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 9 Times in 9 Posts
Hey Riphraph,

Are you ME?
I was born in Mamaimodes hospital,
Ave X? how bout 2020 (actually my
aunt/uncle lived there) I was on E19th street.
Did you go to Jay Wongs on Ocean ave?
Moved to Rockwood park and used to
ride bike path along the belt.

Marty
__________________
Sono più lento di quel che sembra.
Odio la gente, tutti.


Want to upgrade your membership? Click Here.
lotek is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 12:24 PM
  #22  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You guys are hitting it real close to home here…..I live about 4 blocks away from Maimonides Hospital at Ft. Hamilton Pkwy.

Lotek, isn’t E.19 the dead end street when you’re approaching it from Ave. X?

The path at the Belt is where I ride now….from that pier (exit 1) to Toys R Us (exit 5) Remember Caesar’s Bay Bazaar??? . Nice 4 mile ride. They actually paved some of the path – ssssssmmmmmmoooooooth.

And Foster & 18th Ave…the F train…I pass by there when I ride down Ocean Pkwy’s path.

Have you guys ridden to the Rockaways (Breezy point???) or all the way down to Carnarsie Pier? I think I’ll try Carnarsie Pier this weekend.

And RipHRaPH, btw, I wasn’t even born yet in 1973.hehe
Cadd is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 03:49 PM
  #23  
Senior Member
 
ahuman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: NEW JERSEY
Posts: 230

Bikes: Specialized,Klein,Paramount,Univega

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I live in NNJ and know some LBS that will let you ride thier bikes
and two of them have all the bikes you memtion.
I dont have there names or address in front of me but I will
get it and sent them to you...(not at home now)
some place will not let you test their bike if they dont like the way you look or if they think you are not serious about buying the bike
are you near Bergen County??
ahuman is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 05:29 PM
  #24  
Don't Believe the Hype
 
RiPHRaPH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: chicagoland area
Posts: 2,668

Bikes: 1999 Steelman SR525, 2002 Lightspeed Ultimate, 1988 Trek 830, 2008 Scott Addict

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 21 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
i am told that Kings Plaza was built closer to 1968....Macy's and Alexander's were the anchors. That was the only other Macy's after 34th st...so that was a big deal.

i lived at 1230 Ave X (@Coney Island Ave)
then moved to Mill Basin (Mill Ave)

Maimonaides Hospital is at 10th ave and 48th st, right?

also lived in Rosedale near Sunrise Parkway. (Queens)

My grandfather owned a Wilner's Drugstore for 61 years @ Newkirk Plaza (E 18th @ Foster) - it is still there.

There used to be horse stables along the Belt....on Ocean Pkwy there are horse paths on both sides...are those the paths you are talking about?

Has anyone ever rode to Coney Island?!

now i am dreaming of knishes (the storefront under the tracks)
RiPHRaPH is offline  
Old 07-31-02, 05:38 PM
  #25  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally posted by RiPHRaPH
i am told that Kings Plaza was built closer to 1968....Macy's and Alexander's were the anchors. That was the only other Macy's after 34th st...so that was a big deal.

i lived at 1230 Ave X (@Coney Island Ave)
then moved to Mill Basin (Mill Ave)

Maimonaides Hospital is at 10th ave and 48th st, right?

also lived in Rosedale near Sunrise Parkway. (Queens)

My grandfather owned a Wilner's Drugstore for 61 years @ Newkirk Plaza (E 18th @ Foster) - it is still there.

There used to be horse stables along the Belt....on Ocean Pkwy there are horse paths on both sides...are those the paths you are talking about?

Has anyone ever rode to Coney Island?!

now i am dreaming of knishes (the storefront under the tracks)
The hospital is between 10th & Ft. Hamilton Pkwy. I'm totally cluelss about Queens.

Yup...the horse stables are still there and that's the path Good memory!

I biked to Coney Island a few weeks ago with the Sirrus. It has changed a lot, although it is still ghetto. There's a baseball team there now - The Brooklyn Cyclones...I think they're a minor league team.

How about flavored knishes??? The best place used to be on the corner of Coney Island Ave & Neptune (not sure....but it's under the train tracks).
Cadd is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.