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What to do with my GMC Denali Road Bike

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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 to do with my GMC Denali Road Bike

Old 06-30-13, 01:06 PM
  #1  
poorcollegekid
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What to do with my GMC Denali Road Bike

I know it's not the best bike, but I got it for Christmas last year to get my feet wet. Now that I've been home from college, I've fallen in love with cycling and do it everyday. Those of you not familiar with the platform, it's a 21 speed bike with a twist shifting system. I have a couple of questions. Should I upgrade to a brake lever shifting system or should i try to find another bike? As my name implies, I don't have a very big budget, right around $300. Also is there a way to change an 8 speed shifter to a 7 without having to change the rear cassette or derailleur? Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-30-13, 01:11 PM
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Ride it the way it came untill you wear it out.

and get this one:

https://richmond.craigslist.org/bik/3905353196.html

or

https://richmond.craigslist.org/bik/3900349165.html
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Old 06-30-13, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by poorcollegekid View Post
I know it's not the best bike, but I got it for Christmas last year to get my feet wet. Now that I've been home from college, I've fallen in love with cycling and do it everyday. Those of you not familiar with the platform, it's a 21 speed bike with a twist shifting system. I have a couple of questions. Should I upgrade to a brake lever shifting system or should i try to find another bike? As my name implies, I don't have a very big budget, right around $300. Also is there a way to change an 8 speed shifter to a 7 without having to change the rear cassette or derailleur? Thanks in advance.
Get it tuned and maybe some better tires. Save your pennies and when it finally falls a part replace it.
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Old 06-30-13, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed View Post
Get it tuned and maybe some better tires. Save your pennies and when it finally falls a part replace it.
The only thing worth doing.
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Old 06-30-13, 01:45 PM
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Could also keep it around for a commuter. If a thief steals it, who cares? Maybe the handlebars will split in two as they ride off with it.
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Old 06-30-13, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by poorcollegekid View Post
Also is there a way to change an 8 speed shifter to a 7 without having to change the rear cassette or derailleur? Thanks in advance.
No, the shifter has to match the cassette, and why would you want to go from 8 to 7 ?

(Yes, there are some obscure odd-ball combinations that work with mismatched components, but I think they're outside the scope of this discussion)
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Old 06-30-13, 02:15 PM
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Ride it til it dies. If you're lucky you'll get 3 years of hard riding out of it and by then you'll be able to save enough for a nicer bike.
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Old 06-30-13, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by BruceHankins View Post
Ride it til it dies. If you're lucky you'll get 3 years of hard riding out of it and by then you'll be able to save enough for a nicer bike.
This. When you are done with it, I suggest using it for target practice.
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Old 06-30-13, 03:50 PM
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Ride man, ride.
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Old 06-30-13, 04:14 PM
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like what everyone else was saying,

ride it till it falls apart. dont put any money in it.

just hope the wheels hold up.
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Old 06-30-13, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by poorcollegekid View Post
I know it's not the best bike, but I got it for Christmas last year to get my feet wet. Now that I've been home from college, I've fallen in love with cycling and do it everyday. Those of you not familiar with the platform, it's a 21 speed bike with a twist shifting system. I have a couple of questions. Should I upgrade to a brake lever shifting system or should i try to find another bike? As my name implies, I don't have a very big budget, right around $300. Also is there a way to change an 8 speed shifter to a 7 without having to change the rear cassette or derailleur? Thanks in advance.
Hi,

For what it is and how much it cost, be realistic. Forget about upgrading parts,
fit fenders, possibly a rack and use it for what it is, buy another better bicycle.

I've got two bikes, folder and road, use them both, wear and tear is shared.

rgds, sreten.
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Old 06-30-13, 04:25 PM
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Keep riding it and when its time is done donate it.
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Old 06-30-13, 04:44 PM
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Thanks for the advice. I guess watching the tour made me want to upgrade my stuff. I have one last question that my crotch would like to know. What's the cheapest website to get some shorts?
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Old 06-30-13, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by poorcollegekid View Post
Thanks for the advice. I guess watching the tour made me want to upgrade my stuff. I have one last question that my crotch would like to know. What's the cheapest website to get some shorts?
cycling shorts? amazon. (depending on what size, because the small was the best price I could find and it fit me) https://www.amazon.com/Pearl-iZUMi-Qu.../dp/B002KT3XRQ
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Old 06-30-13, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by poorcollegekid View Post
Thanks for the advice. I guess watching the tour made me want to upgrade my stuff. I have one last question that my crotch would like to know. What's the cheapest website to get some shorts?
Don't forget the cost of sending back clothing that doesn't fit right...
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Old 06-30-13, 05:57 PM
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If you're super into cycling, get a job on the side from whatever you normally do and start saving for a better bike.
And either us the Denali as a commuter or get rid of it.
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Old 06-30-13, 06:16 PM
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I've got a GMC too, don't bother upgrading a thing except the brakes. The manufacturer cheaped out on one of the most important parts. Get new pads at the least. You can probably find some inexpensive Shimano brakes when you're shopping for shorts.

It's a tank of a bike and a solid commuter or something for a ride around town. Don't expect too much from it and you'll be happy.
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Old 06-30-13, 06:34 PM
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I have a buddy with a GMC. He rode it with me for 150-some miles on the C&O towpath last week. Carried a good amount of gear on it too, with a seatpost mounted rear rack. Probably had a good 30# in the panniers and strapped on top. I thought homeboy was crazy and offered to rent a more suitable bike for the occasion. I certainly wasn't about to cut my camping trip short for mechanicals on that stupid thing, but he insisted on riding that damn Denali. Despite my reservations, the bike did just fine, although carting crap on it was a major PITA. I don't know what this has to do with anything in question. #justsayin , I guess.
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Old 06-30-13, 09:09 PM
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I rode the crap outta my Denali when I determined that I liked the sport and bought a Fuji carbon bike. I had to replace the bottom bracket bearings fairly regularly (I requested them from Kent, the manufacturer). Finally learned and put in a sealed cart bb. I also popped rear spokes regularly when climbing or sprinting out of the saddle. I bought some stainless steel spokes to replace the broken carbon steel ones I broke. And, like has been said up there ^^^, the brake pads suck. Avoid putting much cash in the bike, but new pads would be a good safety upgrade. You may not have issues with the spokes and bb. I am a Sasquatch, so YMMV.
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Old 06-30-13, 09:14 PM
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People love to bash the Denali and other big box store bikes, but if you accept them for what they are, serviceable basic transportation, they will get you around reasonably well with some basic servicing. Don't put big money into upgrades but if you have a local bike co-op you might find some decent used parts and people to help you make a few budget conscious improvements.

If you like working on things yourself, save your money and get a used entry or mid-level brand name road bike. You can find them in decent shape for $200-300 fairly easily. If you start with a quality frameset and decent components, then you can upgrade as finances allow. Again, a bike co-op can be your friend.
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Old 07-01-13, 05:40 AM
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Hi,

FWIW just upgrade the front brake pads and keep the old ones as spares for the rear.

rgds, sreten.
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Old 07-01-13, 07:00 AM
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I consider myself blessed to not really know the difference between a really good ride, a decent ride, and a crappy ride, since I just got seriously into road cycling beginning of last year. I've got a Specialized Allez which is aluminum and I like it a lot but I'm afraid if I test ride a CF bike I'll realize that I could do better and then spend money which isn't really necessary. So I'm of the camp "ride the hell out of it and then when it wears out buy something better." Also, keep in mind, if you're just starting to get interested in road cycling you may not know yet what your preferred riding style is and therefore not know what type of bike best suits you. So maybe riding what you've got now for a while longer and you'll learn what type of bike would suit you best before spending big $$$$.
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Old 07-01-13, 07:23 AM
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Don't college kids work in the summers anymore. That is how to afford a better bike.
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Old 07-01-13, 08:10 AM
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+1 on ride it till it dies.

And realize its a good bike to use on a College campus. A good bike on a college campus is almost certain to be stolen.

Keep the Denali to ride to class, and save for something nicer down the road.
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Old 07-01-13, 08:13 AM
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+1 what 10 Wheels said!
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