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Since my wife works at a trek dealer... You should only look at trek and go for the most expensive . Seriously though, trek's frames have a lifetime warranty, the higher end frames are still made in Waterloo and their wheels have a 5 yr warranty.

If you can afford it go CARBON. It's not a weight thing or a looks thing- it's a ride quality thing. You will be able to put in more miles because you won't be fatigued by road vibration.
Old 01-06-2010, 10:33 AM
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Thanks for the info

Any discounts for military or pelican members
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Old 01-06-2010, 10:40 AM
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Originally Posted by EZ-RIDER View Post
Thanks for the info

Any discounts for military or pelican members
ditto!
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Old 01-06-2010, 10:48 AM
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Trek is not available online so you'll have to ask your local dealer. They have "high" and "low" retail so shop around. 2009 bikes should be at least 15% off and up to 25% off high retail. Check Trek's site for military, I wouldn't be surprised.

FYI, I was not a huge Trek/GF fan a few years ago. I thought they were the wal-mart of bike manufacturers. I only bought boutique brands. I've been proved wrong by their innovative technology, competitive prices, USA made frames and good warranty customer service.

And no, it's not because I get 'um half-price. I only have one GF and I bought the frame used from a private party.
Old 01-06-2010, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by BumbleBeemer36 View Post
If you can afford it go CARBON. It's not a weight thing or a looks thing- it's a ride quality thing. You will be able to put in more miles because you won't be fatigued by road vibration.
In truth, it's not a weight thing, nor a looks thing, it's a personal feel thing.
which is why i did NOT buy Carbon- i hated the feel of it. totally "dead"- and that is the term i always heard people use in talking about it, but i never fully understood what that meant until i rode a full CF bike. Nope, not for me.
When i went shopping, i rode steel, alu, CF, Ti (mmmmm!), & Ti/alu blends before deciding. Went with steel, as it gave me the ride i liked at a price point that worked for me. i didn't ride any top-end CF bikes, and my feeling about ride quality might have changed, but as they were so far out of my price range, there was no point anyway.
(liked the feel of Lightspeed full 3.2 Ti the best, but felt i could get more overall bang for buck with the Lemond that i had built for me.)

EZ- 1) you likely want a road bike for your knees. smooth, fluid, rhythmic pedaling is what your knees want, and that ain't mntn biking. 2) try as many bikes in your price range that you can go for a ride on, and be sure to try different frame materials and geometries. They are all different, and what works for me may not be your favorite choice. 3) If the shop won't let you test ride, just walk out the door. 4) your best bike shops will typically carry some real high end stuff (the $6000+ bikes). Not that you're going to be buying something like that, but it gives you an idea of what they are all about.
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Old 01-06-2010, 12:03 PM
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+1 on a road bike for EZ.... After knee surgery (all ligaments and knee socket reconstructed) running as a form of exercise was no longer wise for me, though I was running a 7 minute mile 2 months after the surgery... I find that I can control my level of workout better on the road, than I can with a MTB.
I burn more calories on my road rides compared to my MTB rides too... which helps me weigh less so I am not making my knees carry the extra weight.

Buy a quality entry level bike that you will enjoy riding....but if you discover bicycles are not for you you haven't spent a fortune... Plenty of good used ones out there that people lost interest in... Go to a bike shop and get fitted so you know what size to get before you buy...

Nothing wrong with bling... you are more likely to ride a bike that you find attractive...
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Last edited by wswartzwel; 01-06-2010 at 01:03 PM..
Old 01-06-2010, 12:41 PM
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Originally Posted by bikerfish1100 View Post
In truth, it's not a weight thing, nor a looks thing, it's a personal feel thing which is why i did NOT buy Carbon- i hated the feel of it. totally "dead"- and that is the term i always heard people use in talking about it, but i never fully understood what that meant until i rode a full CF bike.
How many different carbon-framed bikes did you ride, how many times, over how many miles and different road conditions before making that decision? I'm not saying it wasn't a good decision, just curious about the research that led to the decision.

Seriously, just like steel, aluminum, titanium and other more exotic alloys the 'feel' of the frame is not defined by the material, it's defined by how the material is used by the designer and/or fabricator.

Steel, aluminum, titanium and the other alloys can be drawn in a variety of different thicknesses, shapes, diameters and and bonded using different techniques, all of which can help to define what the frame will weigh, how much deflection it will have an in what planes and how it will transmit vibration and sound: the latter should not be under estimated in terms of how it can alter the impressions of a rider. Of course, we haven't even discussed geometry which will also influence the 'feel' and handling of a bike. Composite frames are no different, in that there are a variety of ways and types of materials that can be used in the design and fabrication... perhaps as many or more than with alloys.

Beyond the frame there are the wheels, tires and other components that connect the rider to the bike and the bike to the road, all of which can further influence how a bike will "feel". In fact, the easiest way to transform the handling and feel of a bicycle is to work with different air pressures, tires or wheels... Seriously, it's hard to give a bike a bumb wrap for being too harsh if you're running rigid low-spoke count wheels with rock hard tires and comparing it to another bike that has 3x conventionally spokes wheels with larger volume tires.

Anyway, the point is... not all carbon frames are created equal nor do they all 'feel' the same. If you happen to like road buzz and the associated fatigue that comes with it on long days spent in the saddle, then no... carbon won't turn you on: the material thickness and density of carbon tends to null out the high frequency stuff. That's the buzz you can feel through your hands, butt and feet as well as can hear, none of which really do nothing to make a bike perform better but when it's removed does tend to give many carbon frames that 'dead' feel that so many folks cite after a short test ride or a single day of use... essentially a blind date, if even that.

Finally, just to put a Pelican spin on it, I bought my R11S on a whim and without even taking a test ride. As a life-long Honda In-Line 4, CBR owner my first ride on the R11S was a nightmare. I'd read and heard about a lot of these characteristics over the years and while doing my homework, but damn the torpedos and full speed ahead.... I was going to give the boxer a try: it was on my bucket list. So, after that first ride I was certain that I'd screwed up: it really was gutless, it handled like crap, it vibrated like nothing I'd ever ridden short of a Harley and well you get the idea. Well, instead of putting it up for sale I took it out for another ride and started looking over what I really had and what needed some attention. With each ride, adjustment and fix the bike got better and better and son of a gun, I finally discovered that I actually preferred the BMW to the Hondas, despite all of the initial short comings that I perceived.

Last edited by TandemGeek; 01-06-2010 at 01:06 PM..
Old 01-06-2010, 12:58 PM
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Ok, well I can't say I've had a better ride than my ti/carbon Serotta but than isn't available in a fx bike or anything less than $4k. My father in law loves his all ti Lemond but again, not available. If you're gonna go strictly road then first off - GET FIT by a reputable bike shop. Second, I would recommend a bike made in the last few years. Sloping top-tube geometry makes for a more comfortable (and much more enjoyable) riding position. I'd rather have a mid-level sloping than a few year old high-end traditional geometry.

And you really should ride higher end carbon. My dad's 5.1 Madone and wife's 5.2 madone are not 'dead' feeling at all. If you can still find steel - go for it. Bear in mind though that they rust quite easily in a wet environment.

Edit: TandemGeek and I responded at the same time I think. After reading his advice, I echo everything he said. Trek even has three levels of carbon with different stiffnesses. My Serotta was designed as a training monster and the focus was on comfort. Last weekend I rode it for the first time in 6 months (been mtn biking more) we did 40 miles in 2:45 and I felt like I had ridden less than 10 miles.

Last edited by BumbleBeemer36; 01-06-2010 at 01:09 PM..
Old 01-06-2010, 01:02 PM
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I really think you guys are selling EZ on too much bike for a guy starting out. After he has ridden for a year or so, then he will be able to find what type of frame characteristics he likes best.... Right now he just needs exercise...
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:14 PM
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I know, I know but I hated my aluminum framed road bikes sooo much. Even my Jake the Snake cross bike set up for road with a carbon fork and seat post was..... Alright I'm comparing $1k to $4k - not fair.

Trek has introduced the 1 series. You can get good geometry, a carbon fork and tiagra 9 speed for $1099 (high retail).

If you've been following the guitar thread, it's much like learning to play guitar. If you don't buy one that is easy to play, then you'll give it up.

Last edited by BumbleBeemer36; 01-06-2010 at 01:41 PM..
Old 01-06-2010, 01:39 PM
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i really think you guys are selling ez on too much bike for a guy starting out. After he has ridden for a year or so, then he will be able to find what type of frame characteristics he likes best.... Right now he just needs exercise...
+1
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:40 PM
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I know, I know but I hated my aluminum framed road bikes sooo much. Even my Jake the Snake cross bike set up for road with a carbon fork and seat post was..... Alright I'm comparing $1k to $4k - not fair.

Trek has introduced the 1 series. You can get good geometry, a carbon fork and tiagra 9 speed for $1099 (high retail).

If you've been following the guitar thread, it's much like learning to play guitar. If you don't buy one that is easy to play, then you'll give it up.
I have done 3, half century rides on my Aluminum framed (carbon seat stays and fork) Fuji, and love it.... My shop fitted the bike to me, and I have no soreness whatsoever.... Arkansas roads are not the smoothest in the world either.
I am looking forward to riding some 100 mile days this summer now that my legs are ready to make those kind of trips, without injury.

I am planning to upgrade to carbon soon.. but more for bling and weight... Probably something like a Specialized Roubaix Pro Expert.

I like this.. don't know why??? but it makes my heart beat....

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Old 01-06-2010, 01:46 PM
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The carbon seat stays are supposed to make a big difference since they deaden the vibration traveling up your spine.

I shouldn't say i hated the aluminum bikes because they were aluminum. I just hated road biking when I owned them. Now that I have the serotta, when I try to ride one of the aluminum bikes again I hate it.

I'm perhaps not the best expert on endurance in the saddle. My road rides are 30-50 miles. More than that and I get bored and wish I was doing something else.
Old 01-06-2010, 02:05 PM
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I really think you guys are selling EZ on too much bike for a guy starting out. After he has ridden for a year or so, then he will be able to find what type of frame characteristics he likes best.... Right now he just needs exercise...
This is one of my standard recommendations on my tandem cycling website,

Craigslist and Ebay can be your best friends when shopping for a bicycle, particularly if you're just getting into cycling.

There are hundreds of really nice bicycles available in the second hand market at a fraction of their original sales price with very few miles that will provide someone with as many years of use as they want or need.

Just make sure it fits... which is why doing business closer to home so that you can put your hands on the bike, test ride it and look the seller in the eye is typically the best way to go. Well, short of a professional bike shop where you can trade-off the risks of getting screwed in the second hand market against the cost of a new bike sold by someone who can make sure it fits, meets your requirements and back it up after the sale via a warranty.

Just my .02.
Old 01-06-2010, 02:13 PM
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I've bought a bike off cl and sold quite a few there. True the prices are great, the problem is when those 9 spd STI levers get old and won't ratchet. There is no permanent fix and most customers are pretty upset when they are told they need to put out hundreds more dollars to upgrade the shifting.

Same goes for worn out drivetrains. Rings (if available), chain and cassette installed are upwards of a couple hundred bucks.
Old 01-06-2010, 02:51 PM
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There are hundreds of really nice bicycles available in the second hand market at a fraction of their original sales price with very few miles that will provide someone with as many years of use as they want or need.

Just make sure it fits... Just my .02.
this is pretty solid advice, and there are always lots of good deals out there. most kids working in bike shops are there supporting their "habit" and are buying their stuff at cost. when the new bling comes out they are often in a big hurry to jettison their dated (1 year old) gear to get the newest stuff. net-net is you can get some sweet stuff at a great price if you know what to buy.
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Old 01-06-2010, 02:52 PM
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EZ,

An old Army buddy of mine recently decided to begin biking as a way to get back into shape after being retired for three years. He found himself not so fit and a little heavier than he wanted to be and felt that a bike was the best way to go (felt that his knee's would be bad pretty quick if he began running after the time off)

Anyways, he decided on a general fitness bike (comfort, fitness, hybrid, cross training and probably a dozen other names) Essentially a universal bike for city riding (DC) with some light trail capability. He wanted a Trek, but ended up buying a Jamis Allegro. He loves the thing and has been riding like crazy. Road bikes look cool as heck, but if you aren't dedicated to the style of riding, the position could be uncomfortable for you. The cross training/universal bikes seem to be a good start to wet your appetite. The allegro's range from $400-$1200 I believe, and they have a lifetime warranty.

My local bike shop owner is a level one bike mechanic from USA cycling, ex- equipment manager there and head mechanic for the US at the 2000 Olympics who sells the Jamis brand (among others) and holds them in high regards. May not mean much to some, but I trust him (funny guy with great stories).

Anyways, go for the middle path with bikes and branch out from there. And like what was already said, definitely keep on eye on the used market...there are some great deals out there to be had.

Mike
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Old 01-06-2010, 03:19 PM
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mike's got it right; keep the expenses low for the first one, yet you want to get one that is "good enough" so that you are enjoying yourself, and feel encouraged to continue with teh new addiction.

oh yeah, here's the one that likes to get muddy... (no, not the red one)
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Old 01-06-2010, 05:02 PM
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the problem is when those 9 spd STI levers get old and won't ratchet. There is no permanent fix and most customers are pretty upset when they are told they need to put out hundreds more dollars to upgrade the shifting.
Yes, but the temporary fix -- flushing out the shifting parts of the levers with WD40 and then blowing them out with compressed air -- will often times bring them back to life for hundreds if not thousands of miles depending on just how far gone they are and how many times they've previously been 'refreshed'.

And, once again, Ebay or the old UseGroup rec.bicycle.marketplace will usually yield slightly used or NOS components that are dirt cheap. Many of the components on bikes were NOS or take-offs that were 25% to 50% less than MSRP.

But, if you don't have the right tools and do your own wrenching on your bikes it's pretty much the same problem you face with motorcycles and maintenance: your options for cost cutting become severely limited.
Old 01-06-2010, 06:11 PM
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TandemGeek

Where in Atlanta do you live?

Thanks guys for the advise, I think the first thing to do is get fitted so I know what size frame to get!
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Old 01-06-2010, 06:19 PM
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