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Advice for newbie(6 posts)

Advice for newbieChaz
Oct 23, 2001 12:10 PM
Recently got into road biking. Purchased a used Bianchi Campione. After riding for several weeks I feel I could use a more comfortable saddle, the one with the bike is very standard and hard. I ride for fitness and enjoyment, not racing, but am looking forward to participating in a century. I am 6' and 205 lbs. any suggestions would be appreciated. I also feel I would benefit from one of the cyclocomputers(odometer and speed), any suggestions or recomendations would be appreciated. Thanks
re:saddlesdzrider
Oct 23, 2001 12:28 PM
Hardness is usually less of an issue than the shape of the saddle. Overstuffed chairs feel pretty good when you first sit down, but I don't know anybody who sits comfortably on one for a whole day. The same is true on the bike. The soft stuff moves around and bunches up and winds up more trouble than a hard saddle that fits well. Find one by trial and error. Local bike shops may be willing to let you try a some, especially the ones they've already swapped out for other customers.

I use a Cateye computer. It has 5500km on it and is simple to operate. I often forget to start it.
Saddles are hard!DCP
Oct 23, 2001 3:50 PM
At least hard to find a good one. What is good for one bottom is not good for another. I have had three saddles on my first road bike in nine months. The one I have now is OK, but just so. I suspect there is something better, but I tired of spending money on saddles. There is something to be said for persisting and getting used to a saddle. None of the experienced long distance riders I have seen use anything but hard (more or less) saddles. There must be something to it.

A computer is extremely helpful for a new rider. Just knowing that you are not screwing up the speed of the paceline the first few times at the front is worth it, but keeping motivated by keeping track of progress is more important. I have a Flightdeck. I like having cadence in the computer because it is reassuring to know that you are in the cadence range that the books suggest.
re: Advice for newbietarwheel
Oct 23, 2001 7:19 PM
The best advice I can give you on saddles is to find a bike shop or catalogue/internet store that will let you exchange for a different saddle if the one you get doesn't work out. Also, the shop where you bought your bike might give you credit for the stock saddle if you buy another one from them. (Just don't wait too long to exchange, or scuff up the saddle.) The reviews section here is a good place to start, if they haven't lost all the saddle reviews in "upgrading" the site. If so, Selle Italia saddles are a good place to start. I have a TransAm Max that I like a lot. Their Max saddles are all a little wider for those of us with larger posteriors, but most of their saddles are thinner. I also have a Selle Royal gel saddle that is much more padded and very comfortable, particularly for a newer rider. As you ride more, your butt will tend to "get in shape" and shouldn't bother you as much. However, some people have more and more problems until they find the perfect saddle. Many of those who have trouble finding a comfortable saddle seem to end up trying and liking the Brooks leather saddles, which are very nice but heavier than most. www.wallbike.com will let you try a Brooks saddle for 6 months and exchange if you don't like it.

Buying some good quality cycling shorts is perhaps just as important as finding the perfect saddle. While you're at it, do youself a favor and buy bib shorts. They're a little more expensive but, trust me, they're much more comfortable and fit better.

You should check the review section on bike computers as well. I have a Shimano Flite Deck on one bike, and a Performance Axiom wireless on the other. The Flite Deck has all sorts of neat features, like cadence and an indicator telling you what gear you are in. But, particularly for the money, I like the Axiom -- it only cost $40, it doesn't have ugly wires hanging all over the place, it has all the functions I really need, I can swap it between bikes, the display is large and very readable, and it's easy to use.
Ditto on the AxiomMcAndrus
Oct 28, 2001 4:55 AM
I concur on the Axiom computer. It's a real good value. I use the 8C model so I can get cadence as I have to pay attention to keep my cadence high enough, it likes to drop.

The only drawback with the wired Axioms is that I've gone through four wiring kits that get two that work. I've also put a spare kit in my bike-junk box in case one fails.

But it's worth it. I really like the Axiom displays, how easy they are to set up, and to change functions while riding.
re: Advice for newbiezeke
Oct 27, 2001 6:16 AM
i'd like to recommend ABS seats. they are leather, and NASA gell filled and have a ridge down the center. VERY comfortable, though not much to look at. a bit expensive, $99.99, but worth it. Ive been using the wide version for 3 years now on my mtb, and am about to buy a road bike, and will buy the road version.

ABS does have an internet site.