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Need advice(8 posts)

Need advicekid
Dec 8, 2001 12:47 PM
I am looking to buy a first road bike pretty soon around $1100 range. Because I have no idea what brands are reliable, I've just checked some bikes that I could afford at most: GT ZR 2.0 and Specializes Alliz Elite Triple. And I was wondering how important is GT's warranty issue. I mean do you really break a frame like mountain bikers do?
One more thing is I am 5'8" and got 31 inch inseam. I checked wrenchscience.com and got some idea: 54cm frame size and 73cm overall reach(top tube length+ stem length) Well, I don't think any brand has such a frame, so my question is shall I get a bike by its frame size or its top tube length? Thank you in advance.
re: Need advicegtx
Dec 8, 2001 12:55 PM
I checked that wrenchscience sight a few weeks ago and it is pretty cool. However, it is very important that your measure yourself correctly, or you will get weird numbers (which is what I think happened to you). Ultimately, tt length is probably the most important, but there are lots of factors. You should be sure to test ride lots of bikes, and bring a note pad and a tape measure with you. I'd also look at the Lemond (longish top tubes) and the Giant TCR (you might get a good fit on the medium) in your price range. Bianchi also has some nice bikes in that range. I'd avoid the GT for the reason you mention. Good luck, have fun, and be sure to come back with any more questions.
KHS reynolds Ultegra $1195 or Full 105 for $1100Colombian Climber
Dec 8, 2001 6:08 PM
KHS reynolds Ultegra $1195 or Full 105 for $1100

You will NOT find a FULL 105 for this price anywhere.

GVHBIKES.com

Don't waste your money on Bikeshop's entry level bikes...
No need to spend 1300 for a 105/Tiagra bike when you can have a FULL 105 for 1100 or an Ultegra for just 100 more!

And the frame is better quality than any of the entry level production bikes
Or the Viner Comp, also at GVHBikes.com. A DEAL! (nm)RhodyRider
Dec 8, 2001 6:13 PM
re: Need adviceTony Edwards
Dec 8, 2001 11:50 PM
It sounds to me like you are referring to your pants inseam, not your actual inseam, which you would use to size a bike.

I would look closely at the Schwinn Fastback bikes that Supergo is closing out, as they are a screaming deal right now - you can get a full Ultegra bike with Time fork, Velomax wheels, and a Flite saddle for $1,200, or a similarly-equipped 105 bike for $799. Either of these could theoretically be a problem if you had to warranty it, but as a practical matter this is pretty unlikely (and, for that matter, try getting warranty coverage on a Viner!). If you want a triple-equipped bike they have the Super Sports as well, which are priced similarly.
Another killer dealKEN2
Dec 9, 2001 8:43 AM
Apropos of the Schwinn deal mentioned above, look at http://wheelworld.com/site/index.cfm?Loader1
for the GT ZR2, full Ultegra, Carbon fork, Mavic Cosmos wheels, Axial Pro tires, etc. for $1199! More traditional look than the Schwinn (not fastback), same caveats as Schwinn for warranty, but on a quality road bike like this it's pretty much a non-issue.

I built up my own ZR1 frame (same as the ZR2 but different color) and couldn't be happier.
Neither is sufficient, or most important....sprockets2
Dec 9, 2001 11:47 AM
First, get a bike by its overall fit, not a specific number. You may learn that you prefer a "longer x" or "shorter y" measurement, but that should still be part of an overall fit "equation" that determines what you ultimately get.

Don't go all analytical with the friggin' numbers, they are just a very rough first cut-you probably should ride a slew of bikes and fool with their adjustable bits until you get an idea of what you need. For instance, your numbers for an overall reach seem quite long for your height: a 61 cm top tube, which is longish, and a 120 mm stem reach, gives you a 73 cm. I would expect that type of reach on a big frame, not a 54.

There are some great prices around now, so take your time, and ride them first. The Lemond series is nice, and Performance Bikes is blowing out some steel Masi in my area of the USA, which feel really nice, and the Jamis steel bike in your range got a nice rev in Bicycling.

Take your time until the bike of your dreams says "ride me".
sounds offdjg
Dec 9, 2001 9:35 PM
I'm 5'8" too, and despite a slightly long torso (relative to my overall height), and longish arms, I cannot imagine riding the top tube + stem measurement you describe. As a couple of folks seem to be guessing, you may not be measuring all the way up to the pubic bone. But beyond that, you need to consider that effective top tube length will change with the seat tube angle, among other things. I think you're almost certainly looking at a top tube length (+ stem) that's way too long for you, but I don't want to guess the magic number you do need. Frankly, a magic number is likely to depend both on better measurements and on information we don't have about the road riding style you haven't yet developed. What you need, IMO, is a good place to start.

Here's the thing. People are suggesting various e-mail bargains. People will disagree over which of these are actually worth having. But they are right that there are some bargains out there for those who know what they want. OTOH, you won't enjoy riding even a half price pro bike if it doesn't fit you. Just a little off and you might adapt, or fix things by swapping stems. Way off and you'll be unhappy or worse. Figure out what you want in terms of overall fit before you settle on some particular model that's a bargain for someone or other. I'd ask local riders to point you to a shop or coach who will help you with fitting. This is often free (credited against purchase) if you are actually buying from the source of the fitting. But even if you end up buying elsewhere, a $50 fitting fee is, IMO, well worth it if it points you to "the" right bike and away from obvious disasters.

Good luck.