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Old 10-23-05, 01:08 PM   #1
A.C. Slater
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new bike

im a really good swimmer and runner and getting into triathlons, i need to buy a new bike as im useing a friends old road bike, the question i have for all of u is should i buy a road bike and just put aero bars on it on race days or should i buy a tri-bike even though im just a beginner? ur help is muchly Appreciated.
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Old 10-23-05, 01:41 PM   #2
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Big question...

If you are only going to be doing tris and not other type of "group" riding then a tri/tt bike is probably your best bet. If you are also planning on doing longer distance of recreational rides then a regular road bike is more of what you need. You can always add area bars to a regular road bike but be warned... fit is not as easy as you may think...
Just your average club rider... :)
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Old 10-23-05, 05:48 PM   #3
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I purchased a road bike first. I put aero bars on it and it has worked great. I recently put a deposit down on a tri bike. I think I will really like having both bikes. For instance, this morning I road with two other guys. We drafted off each other - you can't do that with a tri bike because your hands aren't usually near your brakes. When I ride with others I only use the aero bars when I'm in front. If you go out to ride with a group of bikers they may not let you ride with them (safety) if you are on a tri bike. A road bike will be more versitile for you. Then, if you get obsessed with triathlons like I am and many people on this board are, buy a tri bike as your second bike. Or, you'll get by just fine on a road bike with aero bars.
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Old 10-24-05, 07:42 AM   #4
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A tri bike compared to a comparably priced road bike will be less comfortable to ride, heavier, not climb as well, and handle skittishly. All of these things make the tri bike not the bike of choice for long rides, and group rides. The tri bike will go faster on flat terrain than the road bike, hence its use for triathlons.
Assuming you can only afford one bike, the answer may depend on how many triathlons you want to do, and how much riding other than tri's you want to do.
Even if your bike riding is only for triathlon training, you're liking to still want to go out and do some group rides, and you may want to do centuries, charity rides, and things like that. Also do you see yourself as ever trying a local bike race? All of these types of activities argue for the road bike.
A road bike with aero bars, and the seat pushed forward will make a serviceable bike for a tri. The time difference between a full on tri bike, and a road bike set up with aerobars will be very small.
I have a road bike, and a just got a full on tri bike. I've time trialed with a reasonable degree of success on my road bike with aero wheels and clip on bars.

Now I'm training for a tri on the tri bike. I can tell you that other than the couple of weeks before a triathlon or a TT, the tri bike is going to see very little use, because the road bike is just so much more pleasant to ride on a daily basis.

In summary, You'll have use for a good road bike for years, regardless what type of riding you do, and it will do ok for triathlon. The tri bike is special piece of equipment with one limited function. A nice thing to have in supplemnt to your road bike.
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Old 10-27-05, 08:10 AM   #5
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check out the Cervelo Soloist Centaur (or Ultegra for 06). It is an aero bike that can be used for tri's or road. It is not terribly expensive. If you go to the road forum here, you'll find a few people who worship Cervelo. I am thinking of getting one, I do Bi's and Centuries and want to get into Tris so I think it would be the best bike for someone who wants to do both. Also, you can adjust the seat to be in road or Tri positions. I think cervelo makes tri specific bikes as well. They are a nice looking aero bike. very cool, yet somewhat more affordable that other bikes I've been drooling over.
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