Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby robbo2072 » Fri Jan 14, 2011 9:31 pm

Hi guys, i was just reading about which brand bike is the best to buy, I also read the same on other sites. They all say in order to have a good bike you have to spend thousands,and "not to buy Chinese They are crap". WHY NOT buy Chinese? I then researched a little. I found out that 95% of bikes Brands are made in Taiwan or China by a handful of manufacturers of which Giant is the largest. Some carbon Fibre race frames made in China with Shimano components will retail for $4,000 in the U.S. The frame and fork may only cost $200 direct from the manufacturer in China. Just because the bike says made in Italy or made in France or made in U.S.A. Doesnt mean it is, the frame fork and component may be made in taiwan or China and then goes to other countries like America, Italy, France and assembled, decals added and boxed then add 60% on to of the value for doing the assembly and boxing and then shipped some where else which will then receive another mark up. Whats your bike really worth? Why not buy Chinese? why not buy over the Internet direct from manufacturer? Which brand is the best?
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby AUbicycles » Sat Jan 15, 2011 8:40 am

The problem is not a Chinese or Taiwanese made bike rather if a brand has a factory making a bike for them, the factory is not allowed to sell this bike for 20% of the retail value directly to customers. If you buy a bike that is claimed to be a top name bike then it will will either be a fake or it is a scam and you will loose your money.


Lets look at the cost of manufacturing a bike - sure, if you cut out all factors, the material costs and production may be a fraction of the end retail price - however you are also cutting out all of the other costs that make it possible that the bike was created in the first place and that you know that the brand is there at all.

Now there are certainly some young chinese brands which are starting as new brands though you won't find a frame worth $2000 retailing for $200. You may get lucky in your search, though you also will find gear that looks ok but performance wise lacks the knowledge, research, testing and QC that a western partner would bring into the equation. This may be reflected in a CF frame for example that has extreme flex. Also you have to consider whether gear satisfies Australian standards, in helmets for example this is a big topic - a good name helmet without the sticker is not allowed.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby mtb159 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 6:51 pm

competitivecyclist.com have some really cheap framsets, complete bikes, groupsets and other cycling accessories. Its shipped from America but a person I know bought the top of the range Cervelo frameset for around 2,000 could have been a bit less. So if your looking for a frameset try this site and then get your groupset of Wiggle.com also quite cheap :D

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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby boertjie » Tue Sep 06, 2011 2:37 pm

Hi All,

I’m new to this forum and cross country mountain biking (and downhill). I’m so new I don’t even have a bike yet :-)
I’m looking at the 09 Mongoose Canaan Comp ($1463 from 99 bikes) it’s on special (use to be $2699) or the TREK FUEL EX 5 ($1200) (Use to be $2000).
I need you guys help to tell me which one to go for? OR if there’s another duel shock bike for around $1500 I must consider.

Thanks in advance for our help,

Boertjie
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bikie » Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:44 am

Hello, im looking into buying my first road bike. (I have been riding a mountain bike for a couple of years).
As such, I am looking at going with a 105 - 10 speed set all through. What would be a good starting range for bikes having the 105s?
Also, I looked at a deal for a 2010 Felt F75 (Gloss White) For $1,200 http://2010.feltracing.com/USA/2010-Pro ... s/F75.aspx

Do you think its a good deal or can I get a better deal?

Many thanks in advance.

Cheers
Newbie ;)
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby sherlock » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:17 pm

bikie wrote:Do you think its a good deal or can I get a better deal?


It's a good bike, but at that price it's only $350 cheaper than what I paid for the (two years newer) 2012 model. I'd either suggest looking at a tad more and getting the 2011 model (mechanically identical to the 2012) or paying less on the 2010 model. There's a big difference (improvement) in frameset and the 2011/2012 models have 105 5700, which is noticeably better than the older 5600 stuff.

In that price range, look at the Felt's, CAAD8 105's (2011), and maybe a Specialized Allez. If you can get 2011 stock you should be able to save a few hundred at least.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby troyww » Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:23 pm

bikie wrote:Hello, im looking into buying my first road bike. (I have been riding a mountain bike for a couple of years).
As such, I am looking at going with a 105 - 10 speed set all through. What would be a good starting range for bikes having the 105s?
Also, I looked at a deal for a 2010 Felt F75 (Gloss White) For $1,200 http://2010.feltracing.com/USA/2010-Pro ... s/F75.aspx

Do you think its a good deal or can I get a better deal?

Many thanks in advance.

Cheers
Newbie ;)


Don't Goldcross (I assume thats where your looking ) have the 2009 for less than $900 . Theres almost no difference between the 2010 and 2009 from what I could see .
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bikie » Sat Sep 10, 2011 3:10 pm

sherlock wrote:
bikie wrote:Do you think its a good deal or can I get a better deal?


It's a good bike, but at that price it's only $350 cheaper than what I paid for the (two years newer) 2012 model. I'd either suggest looking at a tad more and getting the 2011 model (mechanically identical to the 2012) or paying less on the 2010 model. There's a big difference (improvement) in frameset and the 2011/2012 models have 105 5700, which is noticeably better than the older 5600 stuff.

In that price range, look at the Felt's, CAAD8 105's (2011), and maybe a Specialized Allez. If you can get 2011 stock you should be able to save a few hundred at least.


Thanks mate, ill check out the CAADs too. Is the Specialised Allez a Felt brand too? The deal I saw for the F75 online, they quoted the $1200 after discounting it 50% maybe I need to look at a few others websites. Any which you recommend mate? Thanks so much.

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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bikie » Sat Sep 10, 2011 3:14 pm

[/quote]

Don't Goldcross (I assume thats where your looking ) have the 2009 for less than $900 . Theres almost no difference between the 2010 and 2009 from what I could see .[/quote]

Correct mate, looked at Goldcross. I'm not sure if I saw the 2009 F75s ill definately check it, now that u suggested it.

Cheers
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby sherlock » Sat Sep 10, 2011 3:18 pm

bikie wrote:Thanks mate, ill check out the CAADs too. Is the Specialised Allez a Felt brand too? The deal I saw for the F75 online, they quoted the $1200 after discounting it 50% maybe I need to look at a few others websites. Any which you recommend mate? Thanks so much.


The Allez is a model by Specialized (the brand), and is their offering against the aluminium Felt F-series (F75/F85/F95) and the CAAD8's and CAAD10's from Cannondale. There's obviously more brands aside from this, but these are probably the best picks.

$1200 after a 50% discount is crazy. I don't know the (US) MSRP of the 2010 F75, but it probably wasn't $2400. I'd shop elsewhere. Use http://www.bikeexchange.com.au/ to find stores local to you: just select Felt as the brand and type F75 2011 as the keywords, and choose your state. You should be able to find a few dealers nearby. You can also use Southcott's (the Felt distributor in Aus) website to find an (incomplete) list of dealers in your state: http://www.southcottcycles.com.au/Dealer/Dealers.aspx

If your budget is around $1500, try and find a good deal on the 2011 F75. Push that it's been replaced by the 2012 ;)
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Gabe » Sat Sep 10, 2011 6:32 pm

boertjie wrote:Hi All,

I’m new to this forum and cross country mountain biking (and downhill). I’m so new I don’t even have a bike yet :-)
I’m looking at the 09 Mongoose Canaan Comp ($1463 from 99 bikes) it’s on special (use to be $2699) or the TREK FUEL EX 5 ($1200) (Use to be $2000).
I need you guys help to tell me which one to go for? OR if there’s another duel shock bike for around $1500 I must consider.

Thanks in advance for our help,

Boertjie


Hey Boertje,

You're better off posting in the MTB section as most of the threads outside of that are dominated by road bikers. Both of the bikes you mentioned look pretty good for what you want to do, but others in the MTB forum will be able to give more feedback. 99 bikes are a pretty good chain of stores, I don't know where you're located but in Brisbane fortheriders is also really good, and cyc'd for bikes is probably the best shop for Giant. There's also a shop near cleveland that sells cube and bmc, I can find out the name if you're interested - it seemed like a good store and cube and bmc are both brands worth looking into
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bikie » Sun Sep 11, 2011 2:44 pm

sherlock wrote:
bikie wrote:
$1200 after a 50% discount is crazy. I don't know the (US) MSRP of the 2010 F75, but it probably wasn't $2400. I'd shop elsewhere. Use http://www.bikeexchange.com.au/ to find stores local to you: just select Felt as the brand and type F75 2011 as the keywords, and choose your state. You should be able to find a few dealers nearby. You can also use Southcott's (the Felt distributor in Aus) website to find an (incomplete) list of dealers in your state: http://www.southcottcycles.com.au/Dealer/Dealers.aspx

If your budget is around $1500, try and find a good deal on the 2011 F75. Push that it's been replaced by the 2012 ;)


Hi, just checked out 2011s on bikeexchange, and as you said the 105s are around $1,500. I also checked out a LBS here and saw an Avanti 2011 for $1500. Earlier I was getting lured into the $1200 deal for Felt F75 thinking im getting the 50% off and need to act before their stocks run out, but clearly this is not the case. Ill try asking the store if they can give the bike around 900ish (2010 F75). If not im happy to do more research and buy in November and hopefully the prices for 2011 will be cheaper then. If you dont mind, could you advise if there are any good deals available here in this list: http://www.goldcross.com.au/50-percent- ... s-vic.aspx

Thanks so much mate, you have been great help!
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby briztoon » Tue Sep 13, 2011 4:33 pm

This is some advice from one Noob to others.

Haggle your rear end off. Some stores can offer further discounts and/or add ons (peddles, etc) to already discounted bikes.

Buy the best bike you can afford. If you can stretch your budget now, do it. If you are going to buy an entry level bike for $700 or $800 now, save yourself some money down the track and buy the $1.5k to $2k top of the series you are looking at, or even the bottom of the next series (likely carbon as opposed to the alloy bike you are looking at right now). Trust me, upgradeitis is expensive, quality components make a huge difference unless you can afford to throw away $700 now.

If you are buying an alloy bike, Do Not, and I repeat DO NOT, hop on a carbon bike and take it for a test ride, unless you can stretch your budget out an extra $500 to $800.

It's been said before, do not think about buying a bike without a quick measure up and test ride aound the block/church car park/where ever. If the sales staff won't go out of thier way to do the job properly, why spend you're hard earned there. Then when you have made your choice, get the full measure up and bike adjustments.

Best time to visit a store, just after opening time early in the week. You may likely be the only one in there and you get better service, more often than not by the store owner/manager. Ask to deal with the store owner direct as well. He's the guy who can offer the best deals. An added bonus for early in the morning, you may just have a very hot blonde in full riding kit come in to get the puncture on her tyre fixed.

Finally, buy the bike you feel has the best ride. Even if the other bike you like is a little cheaper/dearer, or has a nice accessories bonus package (valued at "$500") included for no extra cost.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby rebilda » Wed Sep 14, 2011 2:16 pm

Important advice for new riders, buying a bike on Ebay:-

Know as much as possible about the bike you want to buy, and what they are worth - both used and new! and DO NOT! become emotionally attached to a bike because you are bidding on it.

Ive bought a couple of bikes this way and I've not been ripped off on either occasion. But I have just sold one of them and this is the prompt for this message.
The bike i just sold was listed at a lowish price, with room for bidding up to what i thought was what it was worth. It looked good in the pictures, but by no means did it look new.
Because the start price was good, bidding started almost immediately and quickly rose to the level where I thought it would plateu........

It didnt plateu.
The price went up and up.
There was about 3 guys fighting over this thing like a bunch of dogs with a bone.
I added with every question asked - "come and inspect the bike before you bid"...no takers on this offer.
As thr price sailed past the original purchase price that I paid (and I probably paid too much!) I almost felt that I should try to stop these guys bidding "Stupid Money!" for this bike. but what can one do as a seller on Ebay? I didnt set the price, they did!

1 of the bidders, I would assume was just a young teenager by the questions he asked. I would have just given the bike to him at a vastly reduced cash price, had he won. But the other two continued to push the price to the point where I've seen much newer, better designed bikes sold (even some new bikes!)

The bidding continued to rise.

I double checked the wording in my listing to make sure i hadnt mis-represented the bikes condition or age. I wasnt talked up too much at all, just the facts.

When the bidding stopped, I had almost made a $600 profit on a second hand bike I bought over a year before. I believe I paid a little too much for it back then, but i was happy at the time.

I was a little embarrased when the transaction took place but the cash was enthusiasticly handed to me, and the buyer went off happy with his purchase.

My advice to all people looking for the next bargain bike, on Ebay.

(1) Know what your bike is worth - watch a few bikes go and get a feel for what they are worth.
(2) Check the New price - you may find it is worth finding a little more cash and getting a new one - the prices seem to be coming down, drasticly. Cycling Express on line, even last years run-outs at the LBS can be at really low prices that would make 2nd hand seem like nonsence.
(3) Check alternative brands / styles etc - A lot of people get caught up on the "In" bike of the week. This changes pretty regularly too, find the right bike for you, not what the "Vello fasionistas" are loving this week. The bike has to impress you - not your mates.
(4) If you have the oportunity - Inspect before you bid! - you need to be happy with the condition and the size when the auction ends, and you have the highest bid.
(5) Know that what you want to buy will suit your riding style - Do your homework! Talk to as many people as possible. I made this mistake! I bought a downhill bike when what I needed was an XC /XT bike - Now, I have a new Trance and i am very happy.

I hope this helps someone to avoid making an expensive mistake.
I was happy to make some money, but felt guilty when I took the cash. I did need it to fund my recent purchases (keep the minister for finances & war happy)

Happy Bidding!
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bigger than traffic » Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:40 pm

Hi,

I have not ridden in 25 years. I have taken up running semi recently and have somehow been roped into doing a baby Tri which includes a 10km ride.

I weigh 120kg, yes you read correctly 120kg. Is there a bike that can cover 10km on the road whilst supporting my weight? And I'm not dropping below 110kg if I'm going to be a realist.

I'd like if physically possible to cycle to work 15km after a few months practice on bike paths.

P.S - I'd like a somewhat decent bike, not a 50kg monstrocity that will humiliate me more than the rolls hanging out all sides whilst hunched over a bike!
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Bandit » Sat Nov 26, 2011 7:15 pm

bigger than traffic wrote:Hi,

I have not ridden in 25 years. I have taken up running semi recently and have somehow been roped into doing a baby Tri which includes a 10km ride.

I weigh 120kg, yes you read correctly 120kg. Is there a bike that can cover 10km on the road whilst supporting my weight? And I'm not dropping below 110kg if I'm going to be a realist.

I'd like if physically possible to cycle to work 15km after a few months practice on bike paths.

P.S - I'd like a somewhat decent bike, not a 50kg monstrocity that will humiliate me more than the rolls hanging out all sides whilst hunched over a bike!


Hello,i am 20 years out of the loop as well but reckon you could get a good enough mountain bike at your local bike store for $600-800.i saw a few really nice bikes today,an avanti was one that stood out.i am shopping for a road bike but cant get over the design and quality of bikes today.found myself considering an MTB as well and sure i will find an excuse.if you go in and have a chat you can see their range and how each model improves with price.often then the choice becomes crystal.good service is a must.Good luck on the baby tri btt and dont be so hard on yourself
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby dynamictiger » Sun Nov 27, 2011 8:29 am

I weigh 120kg, yes you read correctly 120kg


So...

I have ana aluminium framed road bike and it seems to be holding up easily.

Wish i was only 120 kg
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby wittym » Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:15 am

hey guys,
I'm looking to get a new set of race wheels. I'm thinking tubular.
I found this set of wheels. they have a coupon code at checkout (viper) gets you these carbon tubular wheels for 799.
looks like they have decent shipping rates.
anybody have any comments? should i invest???? beats two and a half grand for zipps

I was looking at http://unrealcycles.com/ProductDesc.asp ... Blk&key=it
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Roadbike Newbie » Sun Dec 04, 2011 6:52 pm

Hey hows it goin, as my name suggests I am new to road cycling, I now own an Avanti cross trainer that I have owned 4 two years now and have decided to fix it up and sell it off after heading to my LBS to buy a new rear axle (due to the avantis braking)and glimpsed some promising deals. I'm only 16 years old and my budget is obviously slim, I am feeling keen into getting out and joining a bike club in my region and was mostly thinking a flat handlebar road bike (due to some advice too move away from full road bikes, unless it is reasonably upright) and hitting in the k's.

My budget is looking to be around $800 to atmost $1500 but that is mostly why I am looking for advice to decide for a good quality bike or a cheaper bang for your buck bike. :D

I will definiately appreciate some advice about flat handlebar or slightly race spec bikes and hope to endulge in your knowledge and find 'the bike'.
Cheers Jordan.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby briztoon » Fri Dec 09, 2011 1:23 am

Hey guys, best starting a new thread if you are after advice on buying a bike for yourself.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Pacmaniman » Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:59 am

I'd like to thank those who have added valuable information to this thread.

Whilst buying my new bike - I went to a few stores and found a great deal on a 2011 Canondale quick .. Discounted as its last seasons stock. I rode the bike and really enjoyed the ride, and was about to pull the trigger and buy it.. I had ridden a few other flat bars - Kona, Giant

Then after reading the thread -- I realised I really needed to get out there and ensure I had tried all the bikes in the range and see which one really was the right fit for me..

So I went to a few more stores and rode and rode a variety of bikes that were within my budget (and yes my budget increased progressively as I tested bikes ;) )

It was then that I found a bike with a geometry and feel that I knew was right for me.

So I now have a bike that I know I will ride, will continue to enjoy riding - even though it ended up costing me about $300 more.

Very happy with my Specialized Sirrus Comp 2012

So in a nutshell my advice:

Try and Try and Try bikes - do not rush into a purchase just because its a good deal or the bike looks AWESOME
Be patient, you will eventually do as I did, and jump on a bike and KNOW it was meant for you
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby bardynt » Sat Feb 04, 2012 8:52 pm

well like the guy a few guys have said

i spent about 2-3 months cause i was saving up for a bike i missed most of the 2011 deals. I rode prob say 12-15 bikes form different stores. I rode 26, 29 mtb bikes and found which one felt the best and better components. I could of spent another 300-400 on better bike but i felt like there was limit on how much i wanted to spend on a bike.

I ended buying a xtc 26 mtb for $1500 2012 model and got some discounts on lights and other extras. i think the easiest thing how much is the maximum you are willing to spend then ride those bikes in those price range. i could of got it down south for about 50 dollars less but then thought it was better to have local warranty also they give you the first service for free

also check out a lot of review on the net with the bikes you're interested in to see anyone has problem with the bikes you're looking at
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Stickybeak » Thu Feb 16, 2012 5:54 am

I have been riding for about 2 months for the first time since childhood 30+ years ago.
I have an Orbeo h2o which I bought new and which Im pretty happy with.
In the medium term - june - I am thinking I will trade up to a serious bike: i gather this is the usual course of the disease you guys/girls have all caught.
When I look at the specs for the bikes in the $4-$6k price range i see all sorts of fancy geometry details and i saw a post on here saying that the bike he had wasnt great for climbing - hinting that this was inevitable because of its geometry.
So here's my question: whats the geometry all about? are some bikes better for hills because of their geometry? do you want a bike that is good in your weak areas (say climbing) or do you want a bike thats good in your strengths (say coasting :D )? is the reality that the geometry is all pretty much the same?
Is there anywhere I can read up on the theories behind the geometries?
Cheers.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby briztoon » Thu Feb 16, 2012 7:29 am

G'day Stickybeak,

Good question and it probably deserves it's own thread as I am sure it could go for three or four pages is all the usual suspects wade in on the topic. :wink:

My uneducated knowledge of bike geometry is rather limited, but my noob understanding is that you have two general types geometry, relaxed and "racing" geometry.

Relaxed geometry usually sees the rider sit a little more upright, and often these bikes have a longer wheel base
(look at the distance between the seat tube and the rear wheel - some bikes will have about a centimetre gap or less, while others will have a gap of about two centimetres). The longer wheel base and slightly more upright seated position usually means the bikes are great over flatter terrain and offer more comfort. The "negative" side effects of the longer wheel base are that you have a slightly larger turning circle, and the bikes aren't supposed to climb as well.

Racing geometry with the shorter wheel base usually means these bikes are faster to take off, respond better because of the tighter turning circle and stiffness of the frame and faster in the climb. So the tighter turning circle basically means the bike handles (or reacts) faster (if the rider is good enough), think dodging other bikes when riding in a large group, or dodging that pot hole you saw at the last second, or crazy driver that didn't see you and turned in front of you.

Now these two types of geometry can vary between bike manufactures, and some manufactures include some types of "suspension" on the bikes with relaxed geometry.

If you look at the Specialized Roubaix, it has zertz inserts in the seat stays and front forks, these are supposed to act as shock absorb system for rough roads (this bike was designed to be ridden over the cobbles of Northern France in the Paris - Roubaix bike race), so coupled with the longer wheel base, this bike is supposed to offer a more comfortable ride than the race design Specialized Tarmac or the even more aero designed Specialized Venge.

The Scott CR1 claims to have a Shock Dampening System (SDS) design in to it's seat stays, to offer some shock absorption. This bike has the shorter wheel base, so offers the advantage of a tighter turning circle, but the rider is supposed to sit a little more upright than if they were riding the old race designed Scott Addict or the new race designed Scott Foil.

Hope this all makes sense.
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Re: Buying a bike: Some general advice for new riders

Postby Stickybeak » Thu Feb 16, 2012 2:32 pm

very interesting - thanks
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