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GSG

Bike Expertise Needed

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We're looking to get some bikes now that we have room to store them. We're both leaning towards a hybrid style bike since we'll mostly stick to paved bike baths but also so we can go very light off-road. We rented some cruiser bikes over the weekend and they were fine but I'd like something a little speedier and hardier.

 

I'm having trouble figuring out the size to get. Some of the size charts I've seen have recommendations for frame size, but some of the seller's sites show wheel size instead of frame size.

 

Any info, tips, etc. would be appreciated!

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1 hour ago, GSG said:

We're looking to get some bikes now that we have room to store them. We're both leaning towards a hybrid style bike since we'll mostly stick to paved bike baths but also so we can go very light off-road. We rented some cruiser bikes over the weekend and they were fine but I'd like something a little speedier and hardier.

 

I'm having trouble figuring out the size to get. Some of the size charts I've seen have recommendations for frame size, but some of the seller's sites show wheel size instead of frame size.

 

Any info, tips, etc. would be appreciated!

I'm no expert in bikes but I'm 6'-2" and ride a 28" Jamis Aragon Hybrid.  It's nice and comfortable for longer miles (Usuaully under 10 miles).  I mostly use paved paths but go off once in a while.  I don't think Jamis makes them anymore but I'm sure they have a replacement model.  

 

I think they run $600+ new but I bought mine refurbished from the local bike shop for about $250

 

Hope that helps.  

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Some basic questions to ask before you start shopping:

 

What kind of riding are you going to do?

What kind of money are you willing to spend?

How long do you expect the bike & components to last?

 

I put about 250-350 miles on my bike every summer. I typically ride on paved streets, bike paths, crushed rock paths or highway shoulders.  I didn't need an off-road bike, but I needed something that could handle it if I needed to go off-road once or twice. 

 

I ended up with a 2016 Giant Escape 2.  It's not their top-line bike, but it got me the strength, size & speed I wanted. The geometry of the bike puts all the power I can muster into the chain much more efficiently than my old bike (which I still have, specifically for off-road riding).

 

I had them build me a custom rear wheel, so I'm into this thing for about $700, but it's served me well for a couple of years.

 

4WDyndC.jpg

 

Trek's FX2 & FX3 are in the same ballpark price-wise, have similar components & durability, and ride similarly.  I chose this one after riding a few bikes because it fit me better. It's a bit like trying on shoes - the less you notice the shoe/bike, the better. 

 

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18 minutes ago, knapplc said:

Some basic questions to ask before you start shopping:

 

What kind of riding are you going to do?

Mostly just around town on the streets and paved bike paths. I imagine that we may do some light off-road if we go camping (dirt/light gravel). We're not planning on doing any sort of racing or 20-mile treks.

What kind of money are you willing to spend?

I was hoping to stay under $250 per bike but I could go higher if it means less maintenance due to the better quality.

How long do you expect the bike & components to last?

As long as possible with some basic at-home maintenance.

 

I put about 250-350 miles on my bike every summer. I typically ride on paved streets, bike paths, crushed rock paths or highway shoulders.  I didn't need an off-road bike, but I needed something that could handle it if I needed to go off-road once or twice. 

 

I ended up with a 2016 Giant Escape 2.  It's not their top-line bike, but it got me the strength, size & speed I wanted. The geometry of the bike puts all the power I can muster into the chain much more efficiently than my old bike (which I still have, specifically for off-road riding).

 

I had them build me a custom rear wheel, so I'm into this thing for about $700, but it's served me well for a couple of years.

 

4WDyndC.jpg

 

Trek's FX2 & FX3 are in the same ballpark price-wise, have similar components & durability, and ride similarly.  I chose this one after riding a few bikes because it fit me better. It's a bit like trying on shoes - the less you notice the shoe/bike, the better. 

 

 

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For that price point I think your best bet is to shop around local bike shops for refurb bikes. They'll be in good shape, and depending on the shop they may come with a warranty, and they'll be less than a new bike.  I'd stick with a higher-end bike that's been refurbed & is therefore cheaper, basically because the maintenance on those bikes is generally less than that of the lower-end bikes. You pay less up front, but you pay more for it the longer you own it.

 

I think, for the money, you're better off getting something like a lower end Trek or Giant (recommended because I'm familiar with them), but that is outside your $250 budget. 

 

The Escape 3 has good reviews, and comes in different sizes to fit your body geometry. A new one runs $380, and requires minimal setup & maintenance.

 

 

 

You can also read reviews here, but I can't make any personal recommendations about any of these bikes.

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It depends if you want to be a cool kid, 'cause all the cool kids ride fixies (i.e. one speed bikes with no handle brakes).

 

fd7f9f351955ea81b6e048022fdf8d93.jpg

 

58208988-attractive-hipster-man-standing

 

 

The 2nd one was really captioned with "Attractive hipster man standing with his fixed gear bike outdoors, fashionable cute man posing with..."

 


Anyhow, if you ride in a small town (or any size really), beware that no matter how well you are obeying the laws, there will be mean drivers. I was riding on 25mph rarely used neighborhood road once in a small town on a weekend around 6am, and this road was wide enough to fit 3 semis across. Some jerk in his truck come up behind me and swerve around me, honk and scream at me and call me an asshole for not using the sidewalk (which had a bunch of cars' butts blocking it in the driveways).


Anyhow, my advice is to only fret about it a little. I had a crappy, really heavy bike built in the 80's and it worked well for paved trails and crushed rock. I road it all over Lincoln while I was there, sometimes 20+ miles per ride. Any new (or new-ish) bike you get that isn't a cruiser will probably work well for you.

 

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I think you should visit your local bike shop and see what they have that is used for that price point. You could also check out the Facebook market place for your area as their are often pretty decent bikes on there from what I've seen in my area. If you decide to go to a better bike in the future check out cyclocross bikes. Road bike feel with the ability to go off road, i.e. rock roads, dirt trails, etc. but they're super light. I've been thinking of getting one for awhile due to my adventure racing so I can do training rides mainly on pavement with some dirt work without having to lug my mountain bike around for 20 miles on pavement. 

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Idk what happened to that post above. It won't let me edit at all, so if one of the mods sees this, please delete that post! :lol:

 

@Moiraine There is a shop here in town that does custom fixies. They look so cool but they're way outta my price range! Plus I'm getting too old to be hipstering around town like that ;)

 

We ended up getting a couple 7-speed hybrids from Costco for $170 a piece. Rode them about 8 miles on Saturday, hitting up a few breweries. I can't remember the last time I rode a bike that far, we had a really great time!

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