Suggestions for first road bike?

Discussion in 'Sports & Outdoor Adventure' started by tnmike1, Jul 18, 2015.

  1. tnmike1

    tnmike1 AK Member Subscriber

    Have a Cannondale hybrid but looking for beginners road bike. Will use in flat Florida or hilly Knoxville. Have no earthly idea on pricing but maybe under $1500? Want to buy new only because our bike shops in Knoxville offer free adjustments. Have great choices among Specialized, Trek, Cannondale Felt etc. so any input would be helpful
     

     

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  2. N8Nagel

    N8Nagel AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    For general road use I would look at a 'touring' not a 'road' bike... More relaxed geometry and room for 28mm tires and fenders for a more comfortable/dry ride. Cyclocross bikes are another more practical option than a traditional road bike; they also have room for wider tires but tend to have more sporty geometry, and will have a raised bottom bracket like a MTB for light off roading, and will come with semi-knobby not slick tires.
     
  3. shrinkboy

    shrinkboy AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Nagel gives good advice re: cyclocross type bike. I would add that you should get the best bike you can afford. set the bar as high as you can stand it. you truly get what you pay for. brand doesn't matter as much as fit and level of componentry. you will undoubtedly be looking at Shimano equipped bikes, so be looking for an equpment group of Shimano 105 for starters. from there, your budget is the only thing to consider. and remember that when you first start cycling, its far harder than you thought it would be, but stay with it and you'll (obviously) improve
     
  4. N8Nagel

    N8Nagel AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    105 is the 'minimum good' road group, many touring or cross bikes will come with MTB components, Deore would be roughly equivalent to 105.
     
  5. squirrelnest

    squirrelnest Addicted Member

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  6. marqueemoon

    marqueemoon Gimme indie rock!

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    The Synapse bikes are definitely nice.

    For a cheaper option I like this bike a lot.

    http://www.konaworld.com/honky_tonk.cfm

    I think a dedicated road bike is the way to go. Cross bikes that are not really designed as race bikes are often overbuilt, and true race bikes have geometry that's not really suited to road riding.

    Road disc brakes have gotten much better in the last few years, but the good ones are still expensive. Modern dual pivot rim brakes will stop a bike just fine.
     

     

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  7. marqueemoon

    marqueemoon Gimme indie rock!

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    I always advise anyone bike shopping to try a bike or two that's out of the budget. It can be very enlightening.

    Just like with audio gear diminishing returns kick in at a certain point.
     
  8. N8Nagel

    N8Nagel AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Both points have merit. I personally would buy used for first bike so you can get quality but not pay for it in case it turns out to be not what you want. Also budget for tools, grease, etc.

    Keep in mind when buying used that a bike that 'almost' fits is worthless. Fit is probably even more important than quality in terms of an enjoyable riding experience. I'd recommend if you aren't confident in fitting yourself to a bike to visit a good bike shop and have yourself fitted for a couple different kinds of bikes so you know what frame sizes to be looking at.
     
  9. d2e8b8

    d2e8b8 Active Member

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    Trek has a line of H2 fit geometry bikes - they are not as aggressive as a race bike and are comfortable over long distances.

    Personally, I'm a big fan of Cervelo bikes - both the R series and the S series.
     
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  10. tnmike1

    tnmike1 AK Member Subscriber

    Have trolled Craigslist both here and Florida area where we also live and find nothing but very old--like 10-15 years old. I assume--and ASSUME is the correct word--that there have been changes over the last decade in the way of updates, improvements etc.

    All that said, I went on the Specialized website and found the Diverge and Secteur Double. The video on the Diverge is exactly the type trails we have both here and FL so that's intriguing. What I also like is a simple tire change for either of these models and I can go from light offroad to the skinnier profile of a road bike. But being a rank beginner in this, I just don't know.
     
  11. jbailey930

    jbailey930 AK Member Subscriber

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    Please try a local bike shop. They will help find the right fit for you and audition bikes. 3 years ago I got back into cycling with a Trek 2.1 alpha. There are lots of options on your price range which is where I was. I rode at least 5 brands before I settled. Good luck!
     
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  12. mkane

    mkane AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    If buying new find a shop that treats you right.
     
  13. Dingman

    Dingman Do you know where your towel is? Subscriber

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    I agree with one comment above - please test ride some bikes that are way above your price range - you'll want to know what is worth spending money on.

    And yes, there have been improvements - for me, the best is the smoother ride of a new carbon framed bike compared to my 1991 Aluminum frame bike - no comparison.
     
  14. Andyman

    Andyman Scroungus Stereophilus Subscriber

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    This, but I set the bar low. $1500 to me a TON of money for a bike, especially when the odds are low you'll put 500 miles on it. $300 could by a damn nice bike used. And no, I'm not the guy all decked out in Spandex riding with my buddies on Sunday morning, but I am the guy who rode 11 miles one way to school and back when I was a grad student.

    Check on CL for a good used bikes. Despite the hype, bikes pretty much are still bikes and most of the world gets by on mundane cycles that ride just fine.

    I don't ride my 1970s Trek much anymore, a lot has to do with the lousy bicycling conditions here in the Motor city (shit roads and asshole drivers), but it's got 3800+ miles logged on it and suits me fine.

    This bike is a local Trek 400D Elance from 1987 for $140 and looks like a very nice ride. 531 Reynolds 19.5" frame, but those skinny high pressure tires would be brutal commuting here on our busted up roads.

    BTW, no affiliation

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2015
  15. tnmike1

    tnmike1 AK Member Subscriber

    That I've found. They're Specialized dealers, have weekly rides for both road and mountain bikes for beginners to experts and one of the owners' wife is our vet for three dogs. So quite confident in their ability to satisfy.
     
  16. tnmike1

    tnmike1 AK Member Subscriber

    Discovered my local Cannondale dealer rents the Evo or Synapse for $260 a week or $50 per day for multiple days which includes helmet,lock and bottle cage. For that money I can test drive either for a week. Could be fun
     

     

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  17. Don't forget to allot money for a decent helmet and maybe gloves, shoes, socks, shorts, water bottles and possibly a jersey.

    If money is tight, I would rather buy a less expensive bike and have decent clothing with the thought of upgrading later. (Sort of like audio gear :D
     
  18. marqueemoon

    marqueemoon Gimme indie rock!

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    Helmet, lock, and floor pump are the most important things. Having your tires properly inflated before you head out will head off a lot of flats.

    Bikes are not quite like audio gear in the upgrade sense. The most important things to swap out are for fit reasons (saddle, stem, etc...) followed by wheels. Sadly, even expensive bikes these days often come with crappy wheels.

    Buy a bike for the frame and the drivetrain and brake components you like best.
     
  19. c.coyle

    c.coyle Fighting the Dunning-Kruger effect. Subscriber

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    Say what?!
     
  20. jbailey930

    jbailey930 AK Member Subscriber

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    Don't forget padded shorts:banana:
     

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