Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts
17 posts • Page 1 of 1
Haven't ridden a bike since I was a kid. My ankle is growing old faster than the rest of me (old injury) and so I've been told to cut back on the running and try some cycling. I'm 5'11", around 77 kg.
At this stage (although I see how some get quickly addicted ) I'd only be doing it for fitness. We have lots of cycling paths around my suburb (in the ACT), and I don't plan on real long distance stuff or even doing the commute to work at this stage. Nor am I planning on flying through the air or heading on trails that even walking on would be challenging...
I'm looking at three options at the moment.
New, Giant Sedona AX around $400.
Very much a comfort hybrid. Figure it'd do some dirt paths if I want to, and wouldn't have any trouble with uneven concrete bike paths. Easy option as they sell 'em up the road.
2nd hand, Shogun Metro GS around $450.
Hybrid, a model up and maybe less "mountany"? Would need to have shipped from Adelaide as well (+$60 shipping and hassle).
2nd hand, Shogun Mach 3 around $500.
Seems much more "road". Another model up the quality scale I think. Not sure how it would go with the bumpy concrete of some of the bike paths, or if I'd ever be able to ride over some of the dirt parts of some of them? Involve a drive to Sydney to collect (+$60 petrol and a day of time).
I can't comment on the first two bikes, but I did have a Shogun Mach3 for a while and thought it was a very good bike. Very solid, fast and has fairly good components (105 groupset is very good). I was running Schwalbe Marathon tyres and found them very good and puncture resistant. My bike has also been converted to drop bars by the previous owner for comfort and speed.
I don't see the shogun having any problems handling rough roads or bike paths. They are very solid. I never had a problem with mine and even though I weigh almost 90kgs I havent had any problems with running across potholes etc.
Personally, that would be my choice as it will handle any commuting and can be converted to a decent road bike just by adding drop bars.
Yep, that was also my famous last word when I returned to cycling...
Bianchi, Ridley, Montague, GT, Garmin and All things Apple
Personally, from what you described you'll be doing, the Mach won't be as suited to your needs as the first 2.
The hybrids will be better off the road compared to the Mach3, due to them being more upright, wider tyres, front suspension, etc. If you want to just cycle around the neighbourhood, the occasionaly short-medium ride, then they will be adequate. Plus, they handle better on paths/offroad. Just from memory, the Sedona is closer to a mountain bike, the Metro is closer to a road-style hybrid.
The flat bar roadie (Mach3) will be better i.e., quicker on the road, but do you really need this, if you're not going to be commuting with it, just for cruises around and about? To think about, what will you eventually use the bike for. The pros are you're smoother/quicker on the road, it's less energy to push it around quickly, less upright position = less wind resistance... Cons - less upright possie may take some getting used to (i.e., may be uncomfortable if you're not used to it), will be a rougher ride over rough surfaces (no suspension, more rigid).
Remember: The MOST important thing is to get out to the shops, sit on the bike, take it for a spin, and see how you feel on it. Most shops will let you go for a ride at least around the carpark, if not the block. If your heart tells you pick a flat-roadie over a hybrid, or if you're feeling more comfy on the hybrid, then you know which to choose. Also look at other models, and test them out, see how they compare. They may not be in your price range, but at least you know what you like or don't like, and look for those features in what you're interested in.
Not being from ACT I can't comment on the riding, but I'd plump for a hybrid here, if you're not hitting rough trail you won't need an MTB, and most of the roadie type bikes out there are too narrow focused for general ridin' about.
Addiction comes easy, DON'T SAY NO!
Good luck with the search, let us know how you go.
Hi sandcastle the shoguns are a good bike, i started on a Metro AT and the Mrs has the GS model. The prices you quoted in your earlier post are near new prices so if it was me i would pay the tad extra and get the bike new, the AT for me was approx $420 and the GS was approx $570 and for the extra $150 the gs is a much better model.
Like you i started for fitness and weight loss but got bitten by the bug. 3 months later i upgraded to the shogun team issue which i'm very happy with.
I read a story in the local rag that came out when bike week started, that there is a growing demographic of people 35+ who are buying bikes for a way to get low impact exercise because of old sporting injuries coming back to haunt them and that last year new bike sales outstripped new car sales in aussie.
If your religious about your running and you want to replace that with cycling then a good road bike would probably be more beneficial, if your going to ride pavement 90% of the time then a roadie will eat it up and be far more satisfying to ride than a much heavier hybrid bike.
Here is a link to a very useful site for folks just starting out.
http://www.cobr.co.uk/e-cobr_informatio ... ence.shtml
You wouldn't believe the number of cyclists i see everyday who haven't even heard of cadence and this is the key to fitness in cycling.
Thanks for all the advice so far.
I've done a lot more looking around, and I'm currently looking at the Avanti Black Thunder. Logic being that while the Giant Hybrid is more comfortable to sit on, it doesn't seem like it would be more comfortable to ride... too upright. The main use of the bike will be riding (hopefully around 30 mins at a time) to get fit, not lazy Sunday sightseeing (no time).
So, the Avanti is a MTB not a hybrid, but feels very comfortable. Got a chance to ride around the parking lot, which is not much but boy, it sure felt better to ride than my last bike over a decade ago. Very light etc. by comparison.
So, a bit more advice if you'd be so kind. I'm currently looking at MTBs, as you can put more road appropriate wheels on 'em if needed but otherwise they seem more likely to last and more comfortable to me for the sort of riding I'd do. I realize that a road bike (or road hybrid) would be easier to ride on road, and I'd go faster/further, but the point is to be able to get a good work out in 30 minutes, not be able to get to work without a sweat or go the fastest and furthest with the least effort. Extra effort on road is almost a positive! If I end up wanting to do all that later, then maybe I'll justify a bike for that purpose as well. The MTB seems more likely to be good enough for every situation.
Thoughts on that rationale?
Thoughts on the Black Thunder specifically?
Given the above, I think what I need most is something that will be of sufficient quality to last, and hopefully last with the minimum of maintenance as that is a large ongoing cost if you pay the bike shop to do it on your behalf (getting quoted $70 per service!). Anything else I should be looking for? Is Avanti cheap/easy to service, find parts for, low maintenance etc.?
Also, just as an "incase", what about things like the ODIN Evolution or Exceed and the like from ebay?
Search for item no 200093958408
(not quite a link, as I'm too new here apparently)
I assume there's a reason they are asking less than half RRP, and that I can't find a seller anywhere locally?
I understand your rationale - fatter tyres = more effort = better workout!! My husband managed on his mtb for ages. He rode from Albany to Perth (WA) all on roads and didn't notice that he was a bit slower than some. He did switch his tyres from full on knobblies to semi slicks - better on the road but had a bit of knobble for a dirt track.
The only reason he converted to a road bike was that he was sick of being beaten by the wife (me!!) on all rides!! He is still getting used to the switch, but is glad he made it as 99.9% of his riding was on the road.
Well, I don't have to worry about being beaten by the wife anytime soon... Mainly because with two 9 month old boys we can't ever get out of the house at the same time anymore anyway!
Happy to be one of the slower ones out there.
Best and safest way to buy a bike is fully assembled and fitted, from a bike shop. The manufacturers who sell through bike shops are better, and the bike shop will do a good job of assembling the bike for you.
Cheap eBay bikes are often cheap for a reason. You can't trust the running gear will be good quality, it's a like buying a department store bike. If you go with your Avanti, you are getting a good bike from a good brand, and you can trust that.
An MTB will get you around fine. Do yourself a favour and get some bar extensions and possibly slicks though. Chunky off road tyres don't handle as well on the road, especially with high speed cornering. Bar extensions are good for comfort if you are riding on flat bars.
Road bikes under normal use will be just as durable as an MTB, but off road and getting thrashed a bit, yes an MTB will be more durable. But the road bike shouldn't go there!
You may also prefer the lower gearing on the MTB, which is likely to be easier on the ankle (spin up hills rather than mash). They're also easier to ride as a beginner (or re-beginner) IMO.
If you can find some good trails, I'd take the MTB on them for preference, getting an MTB in the dirt feels good vs on the road.
I'd be wary of ebay bikes Sandcastle, but then again, I'm a very hands on shopper. I'm still very new to the whole online shopping thing anyway, paranoia?
As a resident MTB geek, I'm with you 100% on buying an MTB for what you're planning, but I wouldn't be suprised if the roadie crew here had something to say too.
I had a bit of a stickybeak at the Black Thunder She looks like a pretty good way to get back in the saddle, but the sizes quoted there look odd, get thee to a decent LBS and check one out face to face before handing over the plastic.
I'd be shocked if the shop didn't give the first service free, DIY maintenance is relatively simple, have a look around in here there's many threads devoted to tools and tweaking, but the first check after about 30hrs riding really should be left to a pro IMO.
If you intend mainly road riding a set of semi slicks will serve you well, and I definitely recommend barends for the extra hand positions and greater climbing effiency.
Remember mate, you're doing this for fun, carry that attitude into your riding and the fitness comes as cream on top and of course, the more fun you have, the more you'll ride.
Thanks Bill. I have definately ridden the Black Thunder, although just round the parking lot. I did like the "feel".
But now I'm just frustrated... Was about to take the plunge and:-
The place that had some, and said "no need to put one on hold, pay now etc, we have heaps" the other day is sold out.
So I call another place, they have L and XL in stock. Head down and not so much. Only S and M. Also told that there's no way I'm XL (at 5'11"). Given they didn't have either in stock, don't know why they'd be lying, but the first place had some of L and XL originally so don't know why they'd be either.
They also said the front forks on the Black Thunder will either snap off or wear out within six months, and it isn't meant to be ridden off road (says so in the manual??? It's a MOUNTAIN bike, is it not?) so no warranty there. Apparently $200 to replace 'em if they wear out and that's half the bikes cost. Can't go below the $600 model Avanti I'm told.
Except then they said a Scott Elite 50 (I think) for $500 would be OK as the forks are better (plastic pedals and bad seat by comparison IMHO though).
What's a guy to do? How can it be this hard? I know I over research most purchases, and I'm out of my depth in this field compared to usual, but usually when you go to bite the bullet you can get something you're happy with and move on. Much harder with a bike. I can't believe everyone says something different (re suitability, price point, brands etc.) and they apparently are so expensive before they are worth buying. $600 would by a family supply of bikes for life in most countries... why is it that will apparently only get me something that will last for 12 months here?
Sorry for the rant - just wasted 2 hours pulling 2 baby seats out of the car, driving around and doing it all over again. I just want something suitable that I don't have to replace in 12 months. If a few hundred bucks now means I'll use it for 5 years rather than 1, then so be it... but everyone says something else! I'm meant to be finishing my assignment, blast it!
Depends what you want to do.
$400 buys you a Giant Boulder, which is decent for off road/trails etc, but better than the Black Thunder I think.
If you want to go fast & hard at rocky trails, you need to spend more. If you're going to take it easy, then you're unlikely to break even a relatively under-specced bike. Between $400 and $500 is a good price to be looking at an entry level MTB.
Now, maybe *they* would snap off the fork from the Avanti in 6 months, but it's doubtful it would cop the same abuse from you. But you can always look one or two models up from where you start.
$600 will buy a family supply of crappy bikes, or low feature bikes (single speed shopping bikes), but will buy one mid-low end hardtail mountain bike.
just because it's classed as a MOUNTAIN BIKE doesn't mean it's meant for off-road use. It's more of a classification of bike style and design, rather than purpose. Many of the low end MTBs will have a clause in the manual saying not meant for off-road use, or something like that.
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