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The $$$ starting point for a REAL roadbike(8 posts)

The $$$ starting point for a REAL roadbikeronniedee
Jul 12, 2002 5:26 PM
I have been mountain biking and doing the YMCA spin classes a while. Now I want to take it on the road.

Right now I have in my mind what I can afford, but I would rather wait a few months longer and save for a bike that I will still be happy with a year later.

Any suggestions for the beginning price range I should consider? And what level of componentry should I be looking at? If I go used (and I may), I still wouldn't really know to look for. Thanks for any suggestions!
Here's what ya do...Ahimsa
Jul 12, 2002 5:46 PM
You say you'd rather wait a few months right?

Well, while ya do that, peruse this site as often and as long as possible. Read the archives of the chat board, use the search function to look up threads on newbie bikes, components, and bikes you are looking at. Read reviews. Etc.

At the end of those months you will know EXACTLY what you want and need.


re: The $$$ starting point for a REAL roadbikeseyboro
Jul 12, 2002 6:58 PM
A guy in our club told me a rule to go by, when I looked to replace my old R1000: you can spend a dollar for every mile you ride per year on your new bike. If you ride less, you probably spent too much, if you ride more, well, you get the picture...
Ahimsa's right and I'm proof.Scot_Gore
Jul 12, 2002 7:00 PM
After years of being away from road bikes I decided to get back to it. In my absense the equipment had changed alot. STI shifters, triples, a half dozen frame materials, and the industry went metric, among others. Things had changed so much on bikes I felt like a complete novice. But, I wasn't in any particular hurry. I live in a place that gets cold and has lots of snow. I decided I had till next spring to make my choice. I hung out on this site and lurked. I heard an opinion on nearly everything. Pros and cons of frame materials, pedals, derailers, pretty much everthing. I didn't even post any questions, heck I wasn't even sure what to ask.

On this site I learned about Sheldon Brown, so I read him. On this site I learned about Rivendell's technical library. On this site I learned that Bicycling Magazine's recommendations are sometimes suspect and took that into account. On this site I learned about 6 or 7 fit calculators and opinions on how reliable they might be. After you hear a half dozen people say "pay for a pro fitting", you'll think about doing it, but it never would have occurred to me without the lurking.

Evenually I got pretty good understanding of "modern" bike equipment and began to shop the LBS's. After looking and riding a few new bikes I felt informed and knowledgable enough to look used. Which is eventually what I bought. I ended up getting a quality modestly used bike in the current model year at almost 1/2 off new retail.

So, take A's advice, lurk and learn.

BTW: I hate to lend credibilty to a guy who just posted ...Scot_Gore
Jul 12, 2002 7:14 PM
a half dozen pictures of stuffed monkeys, but, he's still right.

Remain in the ...ummmm... light ...ummmm... I guess.....
whoops got my "A"s mixed up, sorry Akirasho, Cheers (nm)Scot_Gore
Jul 12, 2002 7:22 PM
re: The $$$ starting point for a REAL roadbikeBreakfast
Jul 13, 2002 7:42 AM
Start by pricing the build kits and pricing closeout frames.

Examples: Ultegra build kit $800-$900, Closeout frames $500-$800 or more.

Then look at what's in the LBS. I'd guess you better plan on $1300 being the low end budget for new.

Stay with Shimano Ultegra or Dura-Ace or Campy Centaur, or Chorus. You can make $2500 the high end of your budget and have these components.
New or used?djg
Jul 15, 2002 9:29 AM
If you're an experienced m-biker you may well know enough to shop used (and avoid buying something trashed or just plain inappropriate). Price-wise, you can do MUCH better used. For example, I was in the LBS yesterday and saw an ad (with photo) for a used Landshark, all built up for 800 bucks. Asking price. Not the latest tubeset or components, but a very well-made steel frame (with cool paint) and good, if older, spec, for the price of ...well, something much less good if new.

New? There are new offerings in the 5-600 buck range that do, in fact, behave like real road bikes. A bit heavy, sure, and with pretty basic kit, but they do roll just fine. If you decide that you're really a mountain biker, and not much interested in the road, you won't be out too much money. If you decide you're serious about road riding, you'll want something better (as the frames and forks on the cheapest road bikes may not be worth upgraded components or wheels). My younger brother started riding on a Trek 1000 and it worked for him--got him into road riding and he eventually made the move to something better. You'll get better EVERYTHING if you spend more. My own impression is that the $12-1500 range (in new bikes) has a lot to offer, if you can afford to go there.

Parts? New or used, parts is parts. The cheap ones still work. If you can afford it, I'd suggest looking at 105 or up on the Shimano side of things, and Centaur or up on the Campy side. But don't let a financial imposition of lower end parts keep you out of road riding. The low-end stuff that originally came on my brother's old Trek wasn't pretty, or light, or super smooth, but the Sora deraillers did, in fact, change the gears.

Good luck.