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Simple Question - (hopefully???)(34 posts)

Simple Question - (hopefully???)magnum
Jul 14, 2002 1:45 PM
Hello,

I posted here not to long ago. I've been researching and reading a lot lately. I have a simple question. I have found an awesome bike (I haven't been to my LBS yet to try it out mind you) but I think it might just be perfect for me. My only question is - Would I Kill this bike? I'm 6'3'' - 6'4'' 260lbs (which I will lose when I start cycling - I always lose fast I just haven't been active lately)

The bike is a Trek 5500 (It's got a lifetime warrenty - plus I've read some awesome reviews) I'm just afraid that as soon as I sit on it It will turn into carbon fiber splinters.

opinions/suggestions

magnum
re: Simple Question - (hopefully???)Juanmoretime
Jul 14, 2002 2:52 PM
Magnum,

The bike you are looking at is a very strong frame. Buy it, enjoy it and welcome to the world of cycling.
Maybe not simple...viperbob
Jul 14, 2002 3:29 PM
I have a Trek 5200 that I will be sending back to Trek soon. The carbon fiber bottom bracket is delaminating from the aluminum internal section(this is what you actually screw the bottom bracket into). This results is a constant squeek with every turn of the pedal. Soon it will probably be much worse. I am 6' and 225 lbs. Judging from others I know that have sent a bike back under warranty, it can easily take several months for Trek to render a judgement first on whether or not is is warrantable. Repair or replacement then takes more time. I have not had any trouble with my Trek until I started riding harder and doing much more climbing.

So this hopefully doesn't happen again, I have elected to purchase a Colnago CTI. Titamium triangle for zero flex in the bottom bracket area, and carbon on the rear stays. I was thinking of possibly C40, but was talked out of it by a number of reputable biker shops. From their experiences, biker over 180 lbs just have more issues with carbon bikes.

Good Luck
Bob
Maybe not simple...magnum
Jul 14, 2002 3:38 PM
So it's in your opinion that Ti might be the best route for me?

I just don't know how to sort the good/great bikes from the riff raff.

What exactly goes into making a bike tougher than the rest in respects? - What makes a Road Bike Burly?

I have more weight than most riders but I can almost promise that I have more strength than most as well. Basically, How can I shop for a new bike and know exactly what I need? I've been reading this forum like a madman for the past week or so. I've read any post that does or could pertain to me - so I'm a loaded pistol - Just confused (sometimes)

magnum
steel or ti, probablyweiwentg
Jul 14, 2002 5:20 PM
not that I have any experience at your weight, but why don't you look at some steel or ti bikes? steel may be heavier, but at your weight, it won't matter much.
if you do decide on the OCLV, it does have a lifetime warranty. you could ask the bike store for their opinions.
if the bike store sells Treks, chances are it also sells Lemonds, most of which are steel. you could try one.
Trek's warranty sucks......tronracer
Jul 17, 2002 11:01 AM
They can take months to finally look at your bike and then tell you they won't warranty it because "It is your fault the chainstay snapped."
Maybe not simple...viperbob
Jul 14, 2002 5:40 PM
I loved my Trek. As I have ridden harder, I found that I was flexing the bottom bracket quite a bit. Maybe other carbon bikes are different. As you are heavier, this could be an issue.

I decided to go Titanium, as it will never break, doesn't flex, etc. It is light, and with the carbon forks they still ride smooth. I also found a great place in the UK to buy a bike (actually I found it through this forum) that I could buy a Colnago CT1 for $1,500 with the Star Carbon fork. Give a call to Mike at Maestro in the UK. http://www.maestro-uk.com/ He might be able to give you some insight from his perspective. I found him very helpful.

Good luck
Bob
Beware the steel!DrPete
Jul 14, 2002 7:12 PM
Just saw a bunch of references to steel. Don't do it! You've got 40-50lbs on me, and I could flex my Bianchi like spaghetti on a steep climb. If you want cush, go Ti. Stiffness without all the cash of Ti, go aluminum (Litespeed now has some Al/carbon frames that have caught my eye).

Anyway, good luck with whatever you decide, but I think you'd be happier without steel!
Beware the steel! give me a break...PMC
Jul 15, 2002 6:41 AM
I think condemning steel because of a bad experience with an older Bianchi is irresponsible. Although steel is not as sexy as Ti, CF or an Al/Carbon combo, it's still a very valid frame material and when built right can have a very stiff bottom bracket.

Speaking of noodles, I've heard many Ti frames referred to as just that. Noodles

I ride both Steel and CF and have owned Aluminum in the past. If I had to chose just one, it'd be my one of a kind lugged steel Judd.
Jumped the gun...DrPete
Jul 15, 2002 6:38 PM
Very true. I definitely didn't experience the high-end steel frames that are out there. I guess it's possible to make a noodle out of just about anything...
Steel can be really stiff or noodly...pretty much like anythingColnagoFE
Jul 15, 2002 8:13 AM
Sure I have a Bianchi Eros that is a total noodle, but my Master X is one of the stiffest bikes I've ever ridden. Same with TI...same with CF, same with AL.
Maybe not simple...PMC
Jul 15, 2002 6:19 AM
Bob - What year is the 5200 that you're sending back? I know this use to be a problem on older models but haven't heard anything of the sort with recent models. Also - how many miles and what type of riding do you do? A 225-pound hammerhead is going to be more likely to destroy a frame while a 260-pound novice will most likely never even stress the frame, not that a 5200 shouldn't handle it.
Maybe not simple...viperbob
Jul 15, 2002 5:41 PM
My Trek is a '97 or '98. I know Trek was going through some bottom bracket mods during this time with the Carbon bikes. I am also by no means a hammerhead. I have done around 1500 miles so far this year. I have about 8,000 miles on the frame. Still I'm disappointed as I have 6 other Treks at the house with all the rest of the families...
More fuel for the fire....Scot_Gore
Jul 14, 2002 5:35 PM
Magnum,

You're doing the right thing by doing your research up front. You'll likely get opions on both sides of this coin. I'll not give an opinion and leave that to more seasoned souls, but here's some info that may help you make an educated choice.

Doug Sloan posted this link months ago. It's a primer on the pros and cons of different frame materials in lay person terms.

http://www.sjsu.edu/orgs/asmtms/artcle/articl.htm

HTH

Scot
Must be nice!DrPete
Jul 14, 2002 7:07 PM
Well la dee da. My first road bike was a Bianchi CDI I got for 800 bucks. :) Must be nice to start out with the 5500! :)

As far as the carbon fiber, if you were buying a mountain bike you'd be right to be concerned, because carbon fiber can handle virtually infinite high-frequency, low-amplitude stuff (like road vibration, potholes, etc.) with no problem, and it has a sickeningly high failure threshold. The problem is, when you hit that threshold (impossible to do on the road without help from a car), carbon fiber doesn't bend or crack--it essentially explodes.

So, if you were 300# and planned on buying a carbon fiber mountain bike for table-topping off the side of a cliff, I'd say look elsewhere. But Trek makes a neato frame, and I have no doubt it would stand up to your build. Just don't be fooled into thinking you need an aluminum frame because of your size. I'm 6'2, 210, and I got talked into it when I weighed 225, and I wish I had spent the money to go Ti or carbon fiber.

Enjoy, and check out the "Project One" paint jobs on Trek's website. If you're gonna do it, go all out!
Must be nice!magnum
Jul 14, 2002 7:44 PM
Here's my thinking - and please tell me if i'm completely wrong

Why spend the money for a run of the mill newbie frame - when I know I'm going to enjoy riding...... thus I'll have to upgrade to mid-line stuff in a year - then a full on no holds bar bike in about 3 years.

I think personally I'd rather buy a very nice frame - with decent components - then later upgrade components at my lesiure or what not.

Don't get my wrong - I'm not made of money. I'm a college student attending the University of Kentucky and I do have a girlfriend (who drains some of my bank account) But, by the end of the summer I'll have enough money to buy a complete bike, helmet, and shoes and probably a heart monitor.

I'm probably going to hold off on the whole racing shorts/bibs for a bit. I need to work a few pounds of my fatass first (I'm really not fat - I'm just a "big" guy) ;-) So cargo shorts will have to work for the time being.

I'm basically seeking advice of you all - my elders - so to speak on which direction to go.

comments/suggestions

magnum
check out www.habcycles.comweiwentg
Jul 15, 2002 12:36 AM
Habanero cycles can build a custom Ti frame for just under $1k (frame only). they use straight gauge tubing. a lot of higher end bikes use butted tubing - the center sections of each tube are thinner, to save weight. however, for you, straight gauge would be more durable and less flexy.
as for the guy who said steel was flexy for him, it would depend on the tubing.
Oh, you're right.DrPete
Jul 15, 2002 3:11 AM
Oh, I was just pulling your leg. I think you're absolutely right not messing with a cheaper bike, and I think you'll be much happier in the long run. It's a shame that most newbies can't afford/don't spend the money to get on a great ride that will make them want to keep riding!

Go Bearcats. (I went to Cincinnati)

DrPete
Oh, you're right.magnum
Jul 15, 2002 4:12 AM
Okay I know this is a loaded question considering that I haven't been to my LBS (yet). But, are there any other framesets or complete bikes I should consider? From all the research I've done I know that Trek's have a slightly longer top tube. I have a little more torso length. I'm 6'4'' with a 35 inch inseem.

I know it's all in due time - but I simply can't wait :)

magnum
-----WCC
Jul 15, 2002 5:17 AM
1. How do you KNOW you are going to enjoy riding?

2. Why not buy a good frame used. I got a 5200 in great shape for alot less than new. Unlike you, I wasn't sure i was going to like it.

3. Don't let a college girl drain your bank account.

4. Don't fool yourself with the cargo shorts deal. I have a friend who was, lets say, a Portly fellow. He got a bike and swore he'd never wear the bike gear. Well, he got shorts soon after and a jersey soon after that. Go ahead and do yourself a favor and at least get shorts, wear them under cargo shorts at 1st if you must.

Hate to call anyone a FRED, but if you are out cruising on $3,000 bike wearing tshirt and cargo shorts.....

5. You will hate life the 1st few times you ride, but stick with it, it gets better in a hurry.
-----magnum
Jul 15, 2002 6:03 AM
Wow!

In all my reading of this forum I have never been met with a reply that was so one sided and dreary. I'm not ranting nor trying to cause problems but searching for answers and understanding. And to my dismay - I'm called basically a posser? - harsh

1) I love biking for one thing.
2) I don't want to buy used - because I want a warrenty (as I have previously stated) - and being as tall as I am fitting could be a large issue when buying used
3) I love my girlfriend very much and I never said she was a drain. I have enough cash flow to purchase a bike and have money left over for college and to take her out.
4) I know I need shorts. I know the whole debate. I guess I'm just dissappointed that some people aren't as understanding as myself.

I don't want to step on anyone's toes - particularly yours WCC. Everyone is so helpful here - I just want it to remain that way. I guess you're just calling a spade a spade - maybe you're right. But if your whole intention of your post was to deter me from wanting to buy a quality bike - then I honestly don't know how to respond to that.

Again I apologize - I'm just searching for answers

magnum
No...WCC
Jul 15, 2002 2:06 PM
I wasnt trying to be discouraging. Just trying to save alot of pain and heartache and possibly money. I'm not calling you a poser...I called you a possible Fed, but am trying to save you. A poser would have the USPS Bike, and the Full USPS team kit.

1.First, how was i to know you already love biking? You mention that you will lose weight when you "start cycling", i figured you haven't been cycling at all.

2. I understand the want of a new bike, hell mine is being built at the store right now. But, you can get great used bikes, and probably never have a problem, but yes, it is a risk.

3. You did say your gf drains some of your bank account. Anyway, that was supposed to be funny. She's really not supposed to be draining your account till your married.

4. I see some others have chimed in on the shorts thing. Look, no one will give a crap if you are wearing them. You will be much happier. Ride a few times without them, then ride once with them. You will make the decision.

Now go get a freaking bike. Get the Trek, you will dig it. then ride ride ride.

Let us know what you do.

WCC
-----magnum
Jul 15, 2002 7:15 AM
Wow!

In all my reading of this forum I have never been met with a reply that was so one sided and dreary. I'm not ranting nor trying to cause problems but searching for answers and understanding. And to my dismay - I'm called basically a posser? - harsh

1) I love biking for one thing.
2) I don't want to buy used - because I want a warrenty (as I have previously stated) - and being as tall as I am fitting could be a large issue when buying used
3) I love my girlfriend very much and I never said she was a drain. I have enough cash flow to purchase a bike and have money left over for college and to take her out.
4) I know I need shorts. I know the whole debate. I guess I'm just dissappointed that some people aren't as understanding as myself.

I don't want to step on anyone's toes - particularly yours WCC. Everyone is so helpful here - I just want it to remain that way. I guess you're just calling a spade a spade - maybe you're right. But if your whole intention of your post was to deter me from wanting to buy a quality bike - then I honestly don't know how to respond to that.

Again I apologize - I'm just searching for answers

magnum
You're wrong about the shorts.djg
Jul 15, 2002 9:38 AM
Get some decent cycling shorts right off the bat. Sure you can wear cargo shorts. But you'll likely be MUCH more comfortable with proper bike shorts. On a little 5 mile jaunt to the store it may not matter, but on the sorts of longer rides that will allow you to train and drop the "few pounds" you mention, cargo shorts (or anything other than bike shorts) could really suck, spoiling the experience more than a cheaper bike would.
You're wrong about the shorts.magnum
Jul 15, 2002 10:23 AM
Okay - I get the whole - you need shorts.

I'll invest in a pair of shorts :) I'm just afraid that I'm going to look stupid in them since i'm so large.

Anyway - Anyone ridden a Colnago Ovalmaster? I know it's a Ti bike. Supposedly built for "beefier Riders". Just seeking opinions

magnum
probably a good bike...also check out the Master XL (nm)ColnagoFE
Jul 15, 2002 12:21 PM
yup...true dat (nm)ColnagoFE
Jul 15, 2002 12:20 PM
Get the shortsPhatMatt
Jul 16, 2002 6:52 AM
Even if you under grow them get them. the make a tremendious difference. You do not have to get PI for 108.00 a pair. Look at Volerwear.com make awsome shorts (my new favorites). Also I like the Performance brand shorts as well. The seams in regular shorts will chafe teh hell out of you and you will mostlikly not be able to walk, sit or ride comfortably for a few weeks. IMHO the shorts are the second most important piece of equipment next to helmet (excluding the bike).

Matt
No problems for meAtombomber
Jul 14, 2002 8:16 PM
I purchased a Trek 5200 last year (June2001). By the end of my riding season in mid December, had just over 6000km on the odo. This current season starting in April (I work in the ski industry, so I am in snow from Dec to Apr) I put on another 1500km with no problems with any aspect of the bike. The frame and fork are now being replaced not because of manufacturing or materials, but because of a sudden stop into the side of a Ford Ranger pick-up which ran a stop sign. I am 6'-3.5" tall and leanish 230lbs. Not your typical cyclist fizzeeque, and certainly not a climber.

I compared many bikes of many materials and settled with the Trek. The only steel tubesets I would consider is Columbus Max or Foco or Dedaccai Zero-uno through Zero-tres. Titanium might be a solution, but make sure you look at frame beefy enough. I looked briefly at alu, but nixxed that material because a lightish frame would be disposable, and one that would endure would rupture my kidneys.

Don't discount the Trek, but compare bikes of other materials too. I think you will be happy with the 5500.
No problems for memagnum
Jul 14, 2002 8:27 PM
Cool thanks for the advice Atombomber. I should drop down to 235 - 240 in a matter of a couple of months. When I get active the weight flies off. This fall for example i just started eating right and eating at the right time during the day and I lost about 40 lbs in about 2 - 2.5 months.

It's all in the head really. But, I'm wanting an activity that I can have fun and LOVE doing that helps me want to stay in shape.

Isn't the MSRP for the Trek 5500 about 3500? I figure that it wouldn't change much from 2001 to 2002. Just wondering

magnum
Colnago OvalmasterAllisonHayes
Jul 15, 2002 5:39 AM
It is designed specifically for heavier riders and, besides, its a Colnago. Go to WrenchScience and do a fitting.

btw, if your girlfriend is a drain on your bank account maybe you should mention something to her about equality...unless, of course, she is a southern belle...
No problems for memagnum
Jul 15, 2002 7:38 PM
Cool thanks for the advice Atombomber. I should drop down to 235 - 240 in a matter of a couple of months. When I get active the weight flies off. This fall for example i just started eating right and eating at the right time during the day and I lost about 40 lbs in about 2 - 2.5 months.

It's all in the head really. But, I'm wanting an activity that I can have fun and LOVE doing that helps me want to stay in shape.

Isn't the MSRP for the Trek 5500 about 3500? I figure that it wouldn't change much from 2001 to 2002. Just wondering

magnum
A word on frames.muncher
Jul 15, 2002 5:41 AM
There is, in my humble opinion, a whole lot of tosh talked on frame materials.

The make and shape and joining technique has far more effect than material. And wheels, forks, saddles tyres probably a whole lot more effect on ride comfort than frame.

I am 220, and mash on terrible british roads. I have, amongts others, a 7005 Al Coppi. That bike is stiff as you like, comfortable enough for a day in the saddle, and with all my gear on for a long ride comes in at about 21lbs. There are plenty of guys around your weight riding Al with no problems.

Don't count out Al just because you are heavy - there is nothing to say that you can't ride it - just make sure that you don't get some ultra-trick thing with a weight limit - speak to your lbs/the maker.

I would advise you to go for 25 or maybe 28 tyres too - the difference in comfort is considerable over 23/25, and I don't notice a scrap of difference in roll resist/speed, save that I am probably faster over distance on the fatter tyres, as I don't get so fatigued from all the bumps and jars you get on thinner tyres.

Food for though.

M
re: Simple Question - (hopefully???)NJRoad
Jul 15, 2002 8:47 AM
I'm not as tall as you but I weigh 220# which is where you'd be once you drop a few...I'd recommend steel, for less than most other high end frames you can have one made by one of the masters, custom fit to your measurements AND a cool paint job.

Check these 2 out for starters:

http://www.landsharkbicycles.com/

http://www.steelmancycles.com/