Everyday Bike Recommendations

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Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby KestrelLowing » Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:01 pm UTC

So, I have found myself in need of a new bike as my last one just got stolen. (I REALLY hate this city. Thank goodness I'm moving come August)

I don't bike too often, mainly just for fun/exercise and sometimes to commute. Once I'm back at school, I'll use a bike much more often (probably everyday until it snows) as everything's actually within biking distance.

While I've never purposefully gone mountain biking, where I will be living is very hilly and doesn't have the greatest paved streets. Also, dirt and gravel is very common. The ability to occasionally go over grass, bumps, etc. is very crucial.

Finally, it needs to be pretty cheap. This is obviously an unexpected expense, and I don't want to lose too much if my bike gets stolen again. I'm looking at $200, maybe $300. Is this feasible?

Oh, and finally, it needs to be able to fit on my strap on trunk bike rack (I've got this one from Thule) as I move quite often and would rather not buy another bike rack.

Um, I'm a 5'10" 150lb female, although I won't object to a man's bike. I'm not looking to win any races or anything, just something to get me around. My previous bike was mountain bike-esk and just something that my parents picked up at target 8 years or so ago. It worked well enough (well, I couldn't shift into a few gears, no matter how I tuned it) but it was a little heavy.

So, any suggestions? Any ideas where to look? Is my price point too low? Thanks.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby JudeMorrigan » Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:18 pm UTC

First recommendation: whatever you do, I heartily recommend NOT buying a Bicycle-Like Object from your local Target or Walmart.
Second recommendation: Your price range is a bit low if you're looking for a new bicycle.
Third recommendation: But there's absolutely nothing wrong with getting a decently maintained used bicycle. There are a LOT of people out there who buy shiny new bikes and realize two years later that they've only ridden it a half-dozen times. I mean, even used, you aren't going to have an easy time finding a real road bike in your price range. But you probably wouldn't need one. A used version of something like this might well do:

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/bik ... 339/44538/

Fourth recommendation: Find a local bike shop (via the yellow pages or your favorite yellow page-like website) and talk to the people there. They may very well sell used bikes themselves, and even if you go the craigslist route, that should hopefully give you a clearer idea of what you're really looking for.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:09 pm UTC

Check craigslist. I ride a Langster, which I bought secondhand from a buddy and did a bit of modification to, and it's a great bike. It's very very lightweight, and a bit of electrical tape makes it look like a cheapo that no one's going to steal. Market price is high, so see about buying it used.
EDIT: It's not good for hills unless you're willing to drop some cash to add a derailer and shit. I have an exceptionally large gear on the thing.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Sat Jun 25, 2011 11:03 am UTC

I don't really have any recommendations, but I'd suggest not bothering with a women's specific bike. At 5'10 you're going to fit easily on a men's bike, and at your price range they're unlikely to have any real 'women's specific' features - they'll just be pink or pale blue and have a step-through frame.
Of course if you do find a ladies bike that you prefer, there's no reason not to get it. It's just that women's specific isn't all it's cracked up to be in the world of bikes.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby akashra » Mon Jun 27, 2011 10:03 am UTC

Womens specific frame geometries generally better accomodate the difference in arm/leg/torso length. Giant are all over it these days, as are Kona with the 'Lisa' variant of all their frames.
Buying a frame that doesn't fit you well is a just a recipe to make you dislike riding, which means you won't use it. Any decent reputable bike store should be able to do a proper fitting, but then again, $200-300 bikes aren't really their target of what they'd like to be selling, especially when we're talking about bikes that need proper fitting.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Jun 28, 2011 8:40 am UTC

akashra wrote:Womens specific frame geometries generally better accomodate the difference in arm/leg/torso length. Giant are all over it these days, as are Kona with the 'Lisa' variant of all their frames.
Buying a frame that doesn't fit you well is a just a recipe to make you dislike riding, which means you won't use it. Any decent reputable bike store should be able to do a proper fitting, but then again, $200-300 bikes aren't really their target of what they'd like to be selling, especially when we're talking about bikes that need proper fitting.


Sure, there are bikes out there with genuine women's specific features, but not in the $200-$300 range. And generally the women's specific features in the higher end bikes are aimed at shorter women - shorter throw brake levers, shorter standover and shocks tuned for a lighter rider. At 5'10" the OP is unlikely to find any of these features useful, and there's going to be a much greater range available in men's/unisex bikes.

Of course, the OP did say she wouldn't object to a men's bike, so I'm not entirely sure what my original point was. Possibly just some underlying frustrations from the last time I tried to buy a bike sneaking out there...

So, in the interests of adding something vaguely useful to the discussion, I'll +1 the second-hand suggestions.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby AvatarIII » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:09 am UTC

it's also worth finding out if there is a bike repair shop near to where you are moving, preferably walking distance, like all machines, bikes do need looking after, i know a lot of people that think they can get a bike and ride it almost everyday and then go "why doesn't it work as well anymore" after a year of heavy use.

definately look for second hand bikes. i have a diamondback with full suspension and aluminium frame which cost me £130 ($200) second hand, it was probably worth closer to £400 originally, and it works perfectly fine, and the second hand bike shop i got it from also do repairs and stuff, i recently had the spindle in my back wheel completely replaced for £20, and it was totally worth it because it was f*cked, you can also get gears recalibrated for when some of them stop working,
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Wed Oct 05, 2011 3:50 pm UTC

if you want a really economically priced, light but durable around town bike, get a gmc denali. its what i have, its under 200 dollars, built tough, but still very lights. it is a road bike, so it has the thin racing tires, dunno if that is a problem.

edit: i also discovered upon doing the math i put an average of almost 10 miles a DAY on mine, and its still in pristine condition. can't beat that for durability
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:45 am UTC

I hate to burst your bubble there, but 29lbs is in no way "very light" for a bike. Especially a road bike.
And the fact you ride 10 miles a day doesn't really tell us much about the durability - for all we know you've only had it a week.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Evengeduld » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:21 am UTC

Tomlidich wrote:i put an average of almost 10 miles a DAY on mine, and its still in pristine condition. can't beat that for durability


10 miles a day on a road bike? And you say it is durable? I better hope that a road bike can handle 10 miles a day. Else you wasted your money.


AvatarIII wrote:it's also worth finding out if there is a bike repair shop near to where you are moving, preferably walking distance, like all machines, bikes do need looking after, i know a lot of people that think they can get a bike and ride it almost everyday and then go "why doesn't it work as well anymore" after a year of heavy use.


An alternative can be to read up on stuff like "How to maintain a bike" of "How to change the brakes on my bike". If you manage to do those stuff yourself you can save a few bucks whenever your bike needs fixing ;)
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Ulc » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:28 am UTC

Evengeduld wrote:An alternative can be to read up on stuff like "How to maintain a bike" of "How to change the brakes on my bike". If you manage to do those stuff yourself you can save a few bucks whenever your bike needs fixing ;)


I'll once again recommend a gear-less bike. Not having any gears to worry about really does take the worst of the maintenance away. I've had mine for five months now, biking something like 5 miles every day, and it's about ready for a afternoon spent fixing it up a bit.

Of course, if you live in hilly country, gear-less isn't going to work out well for you, but around here, it's perfect.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Oct 11, 2011 1:03 pm UTC

Ulc wrote:I'll once again recommend a gear-less bike.

Heh, do you mean 'single speed'? I ride one, and I assure you, it has gears. Two of them, in fact.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:10 pm UTC

fizzgig wrote:I hate to burst your bubble there, but 29lbs is in no way "very light" for a bike. Especially a road bike.
And the fact you ride 10 miles a day doesn't really tell us much about the durability - for all we know you've only had it a week.



29 pounds is actually very light, compared to something like a mountain bike. sure its not a specific "racing" frame, but you don't want one of those anyways. you can break em in half with your fingers if you stress it the wrong way.

i have owned this bike for about 5 years now. havn't had to replace any of the parts, they are all factory parts.

this thing was designed to get you around the city with a bit of speed, that is its purpose, it isn't the lightest, fastest bike out there, but it does its job and it does it well for the price.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:14 pm UTC

Rofl, no, it's really really not. 29 pounds is heavy for anything but the crappiest of cross country bikes, or something like a downhill mountain bike. I don't think I've ever owned a mountain bike that weighed more than about 12kg (26lbs). I have one bike that might weigh 29lbs, but it's made out of hi-ten steel.

I'm not sure where you've heard about these racing frames that you can snap in half with your fingers either. My (aluminium) road bike weighs somewhere in the vicinity of 10kg (22lbs) and I can guarantee it's just as robust as yours. I also ride it a fair bit further than 10 miles a day. Those frames that allegedly break just by looking at them funny are made of carbon, and they weigh more like 6kg (13lbs). People also manage to ride small races like the Tour de France on them too, so they're not quite as fragile as you seem to think.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:29 pm UTC

the denali IS aluminum.
compare:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Schwinn-26-Prot ... vi-content

http://www.amazon.com/GMC-Denali-Road-B ... B000FDDWB6

the schwinn is 9 pounds heavier.

i don't know exactly where you think you got your numbers.

and yeah, the carbon frames are the ones i am talking about. those things you can flex them with your fingers. i once had a friend drop 3 grand on one and a week later he wrecked the thing by dropping it on its side.

mine has been dropped, thrown, carried on roofs of vehicles, and is still fine.

like i said, it is not the lightest, but it is ceratinly light.

ninja: upon further review, out of the top 5 most popular google search for "road bikes"
gmc denali comes at number one, and at number three.
at number two, there is the schwinn prelude, 4lbs heavier than a gmc denali

the other two slots are filled by two models from "tour de france" both heavier as well.

i guess it IS the lightest of its class.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:50 pm UTC

Yes, I know it's aluminium. That's why I was comparing the weight of my bike, which is also aluminium.

That bike that you linked on ebay is
a) marketed as a DOWNHILL mountain bike
b) A pile of shit.
You'd be taking your life into your own hands to ride that off road, and it would be the worst thing possible to ride on road.

As for where I think I got my numbers, I used a scale. You know, those things that measure weight? Or do you mean the weight of your bike? I got that off a listing on Amazon.

I'm not sure that you understand just how much of a difference there is between a carbon road bike and the thing that you ride. Like I said, my bike, at 10-odd kg is still not light for a road bike. Your monstrosity is definitely not light.

By the top 5 most popular google search for "road bikes" do you mean the shopping results? Ok sure, in the class of bikes that appear in the first 5 results of Google shopping results, gosh darn, yours sure is light. (Incidentally, searching from google.com.au, none of those bikes appear, so I guess it's just the lightest in America, not worldwide).

On an unrelated note, "ninja" is used when you've typed up a response and someone else has responded in the meantime. If you're just adding something to your post, "edit" does nicely.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:55 pm UTC

Tom, for what it's worth, I ride a single speed Specialized Langster, and it weighs in at about 20 lbs. It is NOT on the light side as far as good road bikes go. Because it's kind of crappy.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:56 pm UTC

fizzgig wrote:On an unrelated note, "ninja" is used when you've typed up a response and someone else has responded in the meantime. If you're just adding something to your post, "edit" does nicely.


got it.

one other thing to consider is weight vs. intended purpose.

most racing bikes can get away with being light because they are usually ridden on a closed, controlled track, flat out, on smooth, paved surfaces, with little to no unexpected consequences other than the occasional bike wreck. of course when a wreck does happen, it is usually over because the bike is trashed.

a road bike is required to be tougher to deal with real world circumstances. i have dropped mine off curbs, (yes i know, i really shouldn't but sometimes you just don't see em in time) run into walls, tree branches, once had some stupid gang of kids try to push me around and trash my bike. (they ended up hurting me pretty bad, but the bike was ok.)

i would worry about your frame being that light for an aluminum, they must have cut a corner somewhere. also, what did you pay for it?
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Oct 11, 2011 8:59 pm UTC

Tom, I think you're wrong about that. You're mincing the words 'road bike' and 'racing bike'. As I understand it, a road bike is anything meant for going along paved roads, and a mountain bike is anything with fatter wheel forks and shocks. Generally, a mountain bike will be sturdier, but that doesn't mean a road bike is made of tissue paper. In most crashes, as I recall them, wheels taco, but the frame is generally fine.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:03 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:Tom, I think you're wrong about that. You're mincing the words 'road bike' and 'racing bike'. As I understand it, a road bike is anything meant for going along paved roads, and a mountain bike is anything with fatter wheel forks and shocks. Generally, a mountain bike will be sturdier, but that doesn't mean a road bike is made of tissue paper. In most crashes, as I recall them, wheels taco, but the frame is generally fine.

"mountain bike" is for offroad work, heavy abuse, etc. slow, but take a beating.

"road bike" is generally for longer distance, applied scenarios, commutes, etc. slightly sturdier parts, but still quick.

there is a third class, "racing bike"
these are the ultra light frames, either very thin aluminum or carbon fiber.
those ones will fold over, bend, crack, i have even seen one that was in at least twenty assorted peices when it was over ( that was a BIG wreck.)
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:10 pm UTC

Can you link me an example of a racing bike then? As I see it, what you consider 'racing bikes' are just road bikes made from ultra-high end components, and lighter frames.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:21 pm UTC

frame under 1000 grams.

http://www.honedesign.com/sites/giant/m ... anced.html

this kind of insanity over weight is just absurd. should just choose a fram that is light enough to acheive the purpose.

29 pounds is not heavy at all. i can sling this bike over my shoulder and walk home if necesary.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Ulc » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:26 pm UTC

Tomlidich wrote:and yeah, the carbon frames are the ones i am talking about. those things you can flex them with your fingers. i once had a friend drop 3 grand on one and a week later he wrecked the thing by dropping it on its side.


A decent quality racing frame is actually very solid, if it breaks by being dropped it's a flawed production (or he get cheated very badly), and should have been replaced (or never gotten past quality control). They can easily withstand a lot of abuse and every day use for a very long time. Though I must admit that most of my friends prefer steel frames (and really, so do I, but getting a good steel frame requires you to build the bike yourself* or shell out a fortune in my experience).

Also, schwinn bikes are generally laughing stock - please don't compare anything to them.

A good road bike really shouldn't be anywhere near 29 pounds, 18-22 pounds is the norm if you spend the money to get a decent quality. For a cheap bike 23-26 pounds wouldn't be surprising, but it certainly shouldn't be more than that under any circumstances.

That said, weight isn't really all that important. It only really matters during acceleration (you wont feel the difference during steady-state threading), but considering most road biking, acceleration after having to stop can be fairly important. Incidentally, this is also why lighter tires *do* make a significant difference, since you're constantly accelerating those even during steady state riding.

Personally, I ride a decent quality single speed road bike and with a few modifications I had done (I disliked the handles, so I had them changed and a few other things) before I bought it, it clocks in at around 18 pounds - and it's dead solid.

And Izawwlgood - yes, I meant single speed. I wasn't sure of the translation, so went for the direct one, and yes, it's equally misleading in Danish.


*And really, if you can get your hands on a late 80's steel racing frame you can build an amazing road bike out of it!
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:42 pm UTC

Ulc wrote:
*And really, if you can get your hands on a late 80's steel racing frame you can build an amazing road bike out of it!


funny you should mention that, i recently inherited a steel frame road bike from when my dad was a kid, been restoring it. its pretty light, very similar to my other one. just it is in serious need of modernization. im hoping to get a higher gear ratio thrown on it because im always maxing it and have more oomph but no more gears to use.

edit: also, wheels matter that much? i didn't hear about that one. maybe i will throw that in to my upgrade as well, it seems the last shop i had my current rims at did a horrible job trueing them, so i was getting em replaced anyways.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:09 pm UTC

Tomlidich wrote:
Izawwlgood wrote:Tom, I think you're wrong about that. You're mincing the words 'road bike' and 'racing bike'. As I understand it, a road bike is anything meant for going along paved roads, and a mountain bike is anything with fatter wheel forks and shocks. Generally, a mountain bike will be sturdier, but that doesn't mean a road bike is made of tissue paper. In most crashes, as I recall them, wheels taco, but the frame is generally fine.

"mountain bike" is for offroad work, heavy abuse, etc. slow, but take a beating.

"road bike" is generally for longer distance, applied scenarios, commutes, etc. slightly sturdier parts, but still quick.

there is a third class, "racing bike"
these are the ultra light frames, either very thin aluminum or carbon fiber.
those ones will fold over, bend, crack, i have even seen one that was in at least twenty assorted peices when it was over ( that was a BIG wreck.)


No, this isn't right at all. "Racing bike" would be more like a subcategory of road (or mountain) bike. I have a 9kg aluminium mountain bike, for example. The frame alone weighs about 1.5kg, which would not make it a racing bike by your standard, but it's lighter than my road bike. I have no idea if my road bike counts as a racing bike by your measure (I doubt it), and yet it is significantly lighter than your road bike.

Tomlidich wrote:most racing bikes can get away with being light because they are usually ridden on a closed, controlled track, flat out, on smooth, paved surfaces, with little to no unexpected consequences other than the occasional bike wreck. of course when a wreck does happen, it is usually over because the bike is trashed.

a road bike is required to be tougher to deal with real world circumstances. i have dropped mine off curbs, (yes i know, i really shouldn't but sometimes you just don't see em in time) run into walls, tree branches, once had some stupid gang of kids try to push me around and trash my bike. (they ended up hurting me pretty bad, but the bike was ok.)

i would worry about your frame being that light for an aluminum, they must have cut a corner somewhere. also, what did you pay for it?


This is also not true. Road racing bikes are ridden on roads. Sometimes with cobblestones. And if you think dropping off curbs is tough, watch Cadel Evans ride some time. He bunny hops over shit all the time.

My bike is light for a number of reasons. It's probably made of lighter aluminium than yours (by which I mean aluminium with a higher strength-to-weight ratio), it's got a carbon fork rather than a steel fork, it's got a 10 speed drive train, rather than a 7 speed, and it's undoubtedly got higher quality and lighter wheels.

And yes it also cost more than yours. It was somewhere in the vicinity of 1750AUD. You could get an equivalent bike a lot cheaper in the US (but it would still cost more than the one you ride, obviously).
Last edited by fizzgig on Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:34 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:19 pm UTC

Ulc wrote:That said, weight isn't really all that important. It only really matters during acceleration (you wont feel the difference during steady-state threading), but considering most road biking, acceleration after having to stop can be fairly important. Incidentally, this is also why lighter tires *do* make a significant difference, since you're constantly accelerating those even during steady state riding.

So, fun thing, my bike weighs in at approx 20 lbs, as I mentioned, and I almost feel like it's too light. When accelerating hard, I sometimes make the front wheel skip off the ground, which makes me feel less stable overall.

And yes, Tom, die hard racers will do everything they can to cut weight and drag. Filling the tubes of your frame with helium, specialized spokes, racing helmets, shaving their legs. Ultimately, on uphill battles, the most significant factor is weight, but you can imagine on a dread straight away drop bars and a tear drop helmet can make a significant difference.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Ulc » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:39 pm UTC

Tomlidich wrote:edit: also, wheels matter that much? i didn't hear about that one. maybe i will throw that in to my upgrade as well, it seems the last shop i had my current rims at did a horrible job trueing them, so i was getting em replaced anyways.


The weight of the wheel matters are fair bit. I'm by no means an expert on bike-wheels though, but here's a few things that you have to consider before buying wheels

Broadness/thinness of wheels: The thinner the tires are, the faster you can accelerate, and the higher steady state speed you can maintain. On the other hand, it means you have to have higher pressure in the tires, making rough roads (or cobbles) fair bit more unpleasant, and the lower amount of contact which helps accelerating in good road conditions is going to be less stable in bad road conditions (wet roads, snow or worst of all, half melted slush-ice snow with salt in it).

aerodynamics: Your wheels are moving around much faster than the bike itself, and the aerodynamics becomes fairly important, so the shape and number of numbers makes quite a difference. On the other hand, fewer spokes means that the wheel will be much less durable.

Weight of the rim: Again, the wheel is rotating, so weight out at the rim is going to be more significant than weight in the frame.

And that's just what I can remember off the top of my head, I'm sure that there is lots of (semi)-important things I've forgotten, by I do know that when talking with friends and co-workers that care a lot about bikes they all agree that the best bang for the buck improvement you can make on a bike, is almost always better wheels.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:53 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
Ulc wrote:That said, weight isn't really all that important. It only really matters during acceleration (you wont feel the difference during steady-state threading), but considering most road biking, acceleration after having to stop can be fairly important. Incidentally, this is also why lighter tires *do* make a significant difference, since you're constantly accelerating those even during steady state riding.

So, fun thing, my bike weighs in at approx 20 lbs, as I mentioned, and I almost feel like it's too light. When accelerating hard, I sometimes make the front wheel skip off the ground, which makes me feel less stable overall.

And yes, Tom, die hard racers will do everything they can to cut weight and drag. Filling the tubes of your frame with helium, specialized spokes, racing helmets, shaving their legs. Ultimately, on uphill battles, the most significant factor is weight, but you can imagine on a dread straight away drop bars and a tear drop helmet can make a significant difference.


Actually, bike weight isn't really that much of a factor with people racing UCI events as the UCI stipulates a minimum bike weight of 6.8kg. Your average Joe with too much money to spend who wants to beat his mates on their Sunday morning ride though...

The front wheel skipping thing probably isn't due to light frame weight though. It could be a frame geometry thing that means your weight ends up further back and unweights the wheel, or a fit thing (but if you got it from a Specialized dealer, they're usually pretty good with fitting bikes). Or it could a technique thing. If you've got your weight over the back wheel and you're pulling up/back on the bars, well that's basically how you do a wheelie (or so I'm told, I've never really got the hang of them).
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:59 pm UTC

fizzgig wrote:
My bike is light for a number of reasons. It's probably made of lighter aluminium than yours (by which I mean aluminium with a higher strength-to-weight ratio), it's got a carbon fork rather than a steel fork, it's got a 10 speed drive train, rather than a 7 speed, and it's undoubtedly got higher quality and lighter wheels.

And yes it also cost more than yours. It was somewhere in the vicinity of 1750AUD. You could get an equivalent bike a lot cheaper in the US (but it would still cost more than the one you ride, obviously).

ah that explains it. i thought we were talking about bikes in the under 300 dollars price range.

that carbon fork probably gives you at least 5 pounds advantage over a comparable aluminum one. also they probably have higher grade aluminum in yours. those wheels are probably a good portion as well.

i am mainly talkin bout more bang for your buck. sure, i do plan on dropping a few thousand on a bike someday, but right now i can't reasonably do that.

as for my price range however, the gmc kicks ass. major, major ass.

edit: also, can someone suggest a good place to get lighter rims? that sounds like a good improvement.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:09 pm UTC

Tomlidich wrote:that carbon fork probably gives you at least 5 pounds advantage over a comparable aluminum one.


Eh? I don't think so. I don't have an aluminium fork to compare, but a steel mountain bike fork weighs about 1.5kg, and I can't see how an Al road fork could weigh more than that. In fact, the heaviest fork I own is a 29" suspension mountain bike fork, and even that only weighs about 2kg (For reference, 5 pounds = 2.27kg)
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:34 pm UTC

fizzgig wrote:
Tomlidich wrote:that carbon fork probably gives you at least 5 pounds advantage over a comparable aluminum one.


Eh? I don't think so. I don't have an aluminium fork to compare, but a steel mountain bike fork weighs about 1.5kg, and I can't see how an Al road fork could weigh more than that. In fact, the heaviest fork I own is a 29" suspension mountain bike fork, and even that only weighs about 2kg (For reference, 5 pounds = 2.27kg)


ok, so maybe not so much, but everything counts toward making the bike lighter.
just for reference, do you have a link to your bike in question?
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:21 pm UTC

Indeed I do
The more current models are red though, so obviously they go faster.

And yes, everything counts. I know of people who only put 3 (instead of 6) bolts in their brake rotors in the name of keeping weight down. This is not a practice that I recommend.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:58 pm UTC

wow, that is a fancy bike.

certainly way beyond my needs lol.

i have been trying to do my steel frame rebuild fairly light, but less bolts in the brakes seems like a bad idea all around lol
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Thu Oct 13, 2011 12:19 am UTC

It's still a pretty low end bike, but yeah, overkill for the riding you're doing. I bought it so I could keep up with my boyfriend (who was riding a mountain bike) when we did longish road rides - turns out that the advantage of a road bike over a mountain bike (on-road) was just about the same as the difference in our speeds, so it worked well for a while.

My short-distance/to the shops/pub bike is one of these. I don't know how much it weighs, but it's a lot. But there's practically nothing on it that can break, and it has a bottle opener integrated in the frame, so it's all win as far as I'm concerned.

And I would have to second the suggestions to get a single speed if it's practical where you live. Derailleurs (especially front derailleurs) would have to be my least favourite bike technology.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby KestrelLowing » Thu Oct 13, 2011 1:45 pm UTC

Well, I've acquired a crappy bike for the time being - it was $30 so I really couldn't argue with that. It functions, mostly.

I'm thinking of attempting to sell it for $15 or something at the end of the semester as the bike isn't worth lugging around. I'm still kind of looking for a bike though as I don't actually ride the one I have because it's crappy.

I personally would have to be able to ride on gravel roads, occasional snow, and where I live is very hilly (I technically live on the second floor of my building. The entrance on the front side is a floor above me) Would a road bike be able to handle that stuff?
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:31 pm UTC

KestrelLowing wrote:Well, I've acquired a crappy bike for the time being - it was $30 so I really couldn't argue with that. It functions, mostly.

I'm thinking of attempting to sell it for $15 or something at the end of the semester as the bike isn't worth lugging around. I'm still kind of looking for a bike though as I don't actually ride the one I have because it's crappy.

I personally would have to be able to ride on gravel roads, occasional snow, and where I live is very hilly (I technically live on the second floor of my building. The entrance on the front side is a floor above me) Would a road bike be able to handle that stuff?


depends on the consistency of the gravel. i have taken mine on dirt roads before, the handling gets a bit sloppy but it is manageable.

you may consider getting a hybrid bike.

they are like a racing bike, but with a tougher heavier frame, and the tires have more aggresive tread on them. they still gain a good amount of speed thouigh.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby fizzgig » Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:28 pm UTC

KestrelLowing wrote:Well, I've acquired a crappy bike for the time being - it was $30 so I really couldn't argue with that. It functions, mostly.

I'm thinking of attempting to sell it for $15 or something at the end of the semester as the bike isn't worth lugging around. I'm still kind of looking for a bike though as I don't actually ride the one I have because it's crappy.

I personally would have to be able to ride on gravel roads, occasional snow, and where I live is very hilly (I technically live on the second floor of my building. The entrance on the front side is a floor above me) Would a road bike be able to handle that stuff?


A cyclocross bike would probably be your best bet, if you can find one in your price range. Basically the same as a road bike, but with fatter, more aggressive tyres. Also probably lighter than a hybrid bike, which might be important if you need to carry it up to the second floor?

A hybrid bike is basically a mountain bike frame + flat bars with fat but slick tyres, whereas a cyclocross bike is more like a road bike frame, usually with drop bars, and tyres that are fatter than a road bike, but thinner than a mountain bike, but have knobs like a mountain bike. In case you were wondering.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby Tomlidich » Fri Oct 14, 2011 3:59 pm UTC

fizzgig wrote:
A hybrid bike is basically a mountain bike frame + flat bars with fat but slick tyres,.


actually that would be a cruiser.

the one im referring to has thin tires and a medium weight frame, the difference to the tires being slightly more aggresive tread on them as opposed to the smooth racing tires.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby llamanaru » Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:02 pm UTC

You're wrong. The one you're referring to is a cyclocross bike. Let's look at some pictures.
Here is a hybrid bike:
Image
This is essentially a mountain bike frame with fat (compared to road bikes) slicks on.
Now, a cyclocross bike:
Image
This has similar geometry to a road bike, but with tread on the tires. This is not a hybrid bike.
Finally, because you seem to be confused about cruisers too, here's what a standard cruiser is:
Image
This has huge slicks, very slack angles and riser bars, just like almost every other purpose built cruiser.
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Re: Everyday Bike Recommendations

Postby EvanED » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:00 pm UTC

There is a range of hybrids too. I'd call both my current and last bike hybrids, as did the shop where I bought it. My last one was more on the mountain bike side (you probably could argue it counted as a mountain bike, but I would not have actually wanted to use it as such even if I were a mountain biker), and my current one is more on the road bike side. The tires on my current one are noticeably thinner than on my last bike, but still thicker than road bike tires. They're kind of smooth. It has "normal" handlebars instead of dropped road bike handlebars. The whole shebang weighs about 35 lb.
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