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 Post subject: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:15 pm 
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Bought 20lbs of vegan protein powder
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Location: Fort Drum NY
I haven't ridden a bike in maybe 10 years, likely more than that (I owned a bike in 2001 but I'm not sure I rode it before I had to get rid of it).

In any case, I really want one and I just don't know ANYTHING. I don't know what kind to get (I'm mostly going to do road riding but I like the idea of the occasional forest trail), I don't know what the rules are for riding (this one is extra lame, I know, but I remember when I was a kid they said to ride on the sidewalk, then it was to ride against traffic, now it seems like to ride with traffic, but I live near morons who can't drive, so it all concerns me a lot).

I went to a local bike store and they had me looking at a 2011 Giant (I'm an XS or an S depending on the bike - I forget which they said was which for me). Dawn gave me her Giant catalog and on looks alone I like:

Suede W - http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bik ... 052/48946/

Simple 3 - http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bik ... 911/48622/

And kind of the Via - http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bik ... 050/48939/ and kind of the Sedona - http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/bik ... 357/44547/

I was thinking about getting a cheaper bike (<$100) for now since I haven't ridden in forever but I don't know what makes sense. I check craigslist (my local is http://fayetteville.craigslist.org/bik/) a lot but there's never anything good for sale. I remember that I suck at shifting, and I never understood what it was about.

Thanks for helping the ignorant!

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 6:35 pm 
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Many cities (and if not cities bike stores) offer free or very low-cost bicycle education classes! They teach you how to ride safely, take you out in a group, will teach you the basics of riding if you don't know them, etc. I'd really encourage looking into that if you don't have someone with a lot of bike knowledge in your life. I'd also suggest going into a bike shop you like where you don't feel pressured and talking about what you're looking for, what you don't want, and then trying out a whole bunch of bikes.

Good luck! This is so exciting!

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 7:49 pm 
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Slept through a huge sale, OH NO!
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Don't go by looks. Test ride! Test ride! Test ride!


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:58 am 
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That's cool j-dub, I had no idea - thanks!

~Sz - I will definitely ride things before I buy - especially at $300+ ! The place I went to said I could ride in the parking lot and they were very no pressure.

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"It's because I'm judging them. Harshly. Judgey McJudgerson." - mel c


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 8:11 am 
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Location: Yorkshire, UK
I got a giant sedona (looks a bit different to the one on the link you have) about 5 years ago. I was like you, hadn't ridden a bike for years. I also had a particularly troublesome injury from a car accident which caused pain in my back & neck.

So I bought the giant because it was quite a light bike & it had good suspension which I hoped would prevent jarring my injuries.

It worked. I love it & I have ridden up to 25 miles in a day on off road tracks. In fact I've just got back from a 5 mile ride today. I got it from a local dealer & got mud guards & a few other things added for free. I also take it back there every year or two for a service which costs about £25.

I hope you find the one you love.


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 1:54 pm 
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Slept through a huge sale, OH NO!
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Ah, good, re: Test riding. Bring your helmet!

$300 is actually a great starting point for a solid bike. Giant is a good brand, they make a large range of bikes for every sort of rider. You are smart to be shopping in a bike shop that seems to have good customer service.

I really wouldn't spend less than $200 for any bike, a moving vehicle is not something you want to go bargain-basement on!

Gears are great, by the way. If you are riding flat, nothing says you have to use them, but it is usually nice to have the option when hills present themselves. Shifting these days is much smoother than the gears of old which took much more effort. So, I wouldn't go out of my way to by a bike without gears. Have them, and use them when you're comfortable.


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 12:40 pm 
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I found this book really helpful: http://www.amazon.com/Every-Womans-Guid ... 877&sr=1-2

Also, don't be put off by the name, but I found the Bike Snob book really helpful too (it has some good info on riding in traffic, and is funny): http://www.amazon.com/Bike-Snob-Systema ... 133&sr=1-1

As far as riding in traffic, don't ever ride against traffic! It's super dangerous! I would advice asking around at bike shops about classes, as j-dub mentioned. I took a class from the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition on riding in the city, and it gave me WAAAAAY more confidence and made me feel really clear on the law.

You can also check for resources and things here: http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/bicy ... lyamerica/

As far as the bike itself, I'm with sz that the only way to know for sure is a test ride. I also agree that getting a super cheapy bike isn't the greatest idea. It sounds like a hybrid might be a good thing for you, but talk with people at your local bike shop and ride lots of different things.

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:10 pm 
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I would first try to get a handle of what you would like to do with the bike. Are you looking to get a bike to cruise around town/commute/exercise on?

Used bikes on craigslist are a good route but fixing old bikes can cost a lot of money and/or time.

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 5:28 pm 
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Thanks everyone! Sorry, I haven't been internetting much lately.

Generally I just want to cruise around and get fun exercise. No commuting.

I got a Raleigh Detour 2.5 today! It's really nice - I tried a couple of bikes and when I got on this one it was easy to just get going and it felt right - the other one I was considering just felt wrong. I got a helmet too, and some lights and this fancy computer that calculates all sorts of stuff and a pump.

I rode around a bit when I got home - maybe a mile, total - and felt kind of wiped - excited to go again :)

JoPa, I'll look into those books, thanks!

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"T-shirts are not allowed in heaven, Karyn. They don't do casual Fridays." - Amandabear

"It's because I'm judging them. Harshly. Judgey McJudgerson." - mel c


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:02 pm 
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Bought 20lbs of vegan protein powder
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JoPa, the first book is $4.99 for the kindle and my library doesn't have it so I bought it - a few pages in and I already like it - thanks!

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"T-shirts are not allowed in heaven, Karyn. They don't do casual Fridays." - Amandabear

"It's because I'm judging them. Harshly. Judgey McJudgerson." - mel c


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:05 pm 
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appifanie wrote:
I got a Raleigh Detour 2.5 today! It's really nice - I tried a couple of bikes and when I got on this one it was easy to just get going and it felt right - the other one I was considering just felt wrong.

Congrats! The best bike in the world is the one you want to ride.

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 8:59 am 
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that's what i figured - some decisions you just have to make intuitively.

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"T-shirts are not allowed in heaven, Karyn. They don't do casual Fridays." - Amandabear

"It's because I'm judging them. Harshly. Judgey McJudgerson." - mel c


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 9:04 am 
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I sell tons of those detour bikes at my bike, they are popular for a reason!


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 11:49 am 
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appifanie wrote:
JoPa, the first book is $4.99 for the kindle and my library doesn't have it so I bought it - a few pages in and I already like it - thanks!


Awesome! Congrats on the bike!

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If you spit on my food I will blow your forking head off, you filthy shitdog. - Mumbles
Don't you know that vegan meat is the gateway drug to chicken addiction? Because GMO and trans-fats. - kaerlighed


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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 12:11 pm 
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I am so happy for you! Riding a bike is such a joy.

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 Post subject: Re: Bicycles for Dummies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 1:01 pm 
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fupa, good to hear, thanks! the girl at the bike store was super nice and helpful.

and thanks all around everyone! :D

bare minimum i will be riding MWF afternoons while the kid is at school.

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"T-shirts are not allowed in heaven, Karyn. They don't do casual Fridays." - Amandabear

"It's because I'm judging them. Harshly. Judgey McJudgerson." - mel c


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