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newbie looking for a road bike...(17 posts)

newbie looking for a road bike...006_007
Aug 25, 2003 1:03 PM
I need advice in what to look for in my first road bike. Or even if I need a road bike. I would use it daily for a commute to work (@ 6 miles each way) but if I get something more road oriented I am sure I would do longer training rides on the weekends.

What should I look for? Campy vs Shimano? (don't mean to open can of worms here) 9speed or 10 speed? Certain frame materials?

Should I get something that can use panniers, or just carry the stuff in my backpack (what I currently do)

How much should I spend? I was thinking of the $1000-$1250 range? Should I spend more initially?

Thanks for any advice.

TJ
Why not use what you are already riding? nmKristin
Aug 25, 2003 1:15 PM
Dual suspension w no lockout is ugly for road use (nm)006_007
Aug 25, 2003 1:19 PM
Ah. Sorry, your initial post sounded like a possible troll post.Kristin
Aug 25, 2003 1:43 PM
You really could get anything you want. I bought a $200 commuter. I ride in lots of traffic, so I like the stability of the hardtail I bought. Its easier to see whats going on around me. Then again, I'm still new to riding and my handling skills are only okay. If you want to play around with road riding and want a bike that can double as a commuter, then $1200 is a nice entry level budget. Just make sure the frame you buy is drilled for racks and panniers if you plan to use those. Some aren't.

Shimano is cheaper to fix/replace than Campy. 10 speed is easier to upgrade than 9. Backpacks are heavy and "you" carry them. Back racks and panniers are heavy too, but the bike carries them. Over time, a heavy backpack can hurt your back. A back rack will slow you down but won't hurt your bike.
oops, the Campy/Shimano does sound like troll bait, sorry.006_007
Aug 25, 2003 1:53 PM
Why is the 10 speed easier to upgrade then the 9?

I want to play around with road riding the same way I played initially with a mountain bike. Sorta entry level, potential for upgrades, then go nuts spending lots of cash!

My biggest concern is how much I should worry about frame material (aluminum vs steel vs titanium)I know those will all be different price points, but if I am better off investing initially I do not have a problem with that. I am not wild about spending 5K on my first road bike.

Thanks again!

TJ
Oops, my badKristin
Aug 25, 2003 2:07 PM
I was thinking all higher end groups were 10 speed. True for Campy, untrue for Shimano. Basically, I was thinking that you may want to consider upgradablity. Some mid-level drive trains are not upgradable. For instance, I can't put any Chorus or Record parts on my Veloce. But that may not even be an issue for you.
To answer a few...gtscottie
Aug 25, 2003 1:33 PM
Campy Vs. Shimano is like asking the question should I drive a Ford or a Chevy...everybody has an opinion. I ride a bike with Shimano and a 7 speed and commute 50km each day...It seems to work.
I ride a co-moly frame and generally carry a backpack to work unless I have to carry my laptop then I pull a BOB trailer which works great.
As far as what to spend....Spend what you can afford. It is hard to enjoy a bike if you are worried about payments. You can get some awful nice second hand bikes for a low price.

So in my opinion look around and when you see a bike that makes you go " Hey I like that!!" buy it.
You hook up a bob trailer just for a laptop? nmKristin
Aug 25, 2003 1:45 PM
I could see it if I had to haul my desktop and monitor home with me. But my laptop fits nicely in a padded pannier.
You hook up a bob trailer just for a laptop? nmgtscottie
Aug 25, 2003 1:55 PM
Laptop day timer and cloths. I also don't have any drop outs on my frame to hook a rack to so panniers don't work too well.
Makes sense.Kristin
Aug 25, 2003 2:09 PM
I thought perhaps you loved your laptop very very much.
Makes sense.gtscottie
Aug 25, 2003 2:12 PM
That is funny! No my laptop is work and I really don't like it that much :)
Same situation a few months agoMr Nick
Aug 25, 2003 2:01 PM
I also wanted a road bike to commute on and ended up buying one. Love it, but I don't commute on it, instead I am still looking for something really inexpensive to ride to work so I don't have to worry about it.

So my opinion is:
- Go shimano because of price and availability
- Get panniers because backpacks are hot
- Go chro-moly for comfort
- Spend as little as possible so when it gets ripped off or when you hit a car you won't be so upset.
- If there is a lot of traffic get a rigid mtn bike or put flat bars on a road bike with laid back geometry so that you have the most control and abillity to see all the crazy bastards who want to run over you.
- Once you have this bike then save up and get a really sweet road bike for weekend training rides.

That is pretty much what I am doing and I was in exactly the same situation as you with a 6 mile commute.
006 007, READ THIS!!!spankdoggie
Aug 25, 2003 4:02 PM
Buy a Fuji Team Road bike. It is under 17 lbs and falls in your price category. A friend of mine bought one, and rode it in a century with me. Here is a link: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3623320717&category=7298
I boughtgildomilo
Aug 25, 2003 4:40 PM
a Fuji touring model a few months ago and I have a back rack on it with a set of Ortlieb panniers. I commute 54 miles round trip 2-3X a week. The bike is great for the long commute and toting all my stuff back and forth to work.
-Gil
PS my friends have 10,000 miles on their fuji touring bikes and have only had to change shifting cables for mantience.
Road rig, backpack, and miles of pure joy.teoteoteo
Aug 25, 2003 6:26 PM
FWIW I commute on mutiple bikes depending on my mood. Depending on your local weather some bikes may stand out more than others. It is mostly sunny and hot in Austin so my road bike is my choice most often. It's fast and fun--I enjoy riding it so why not commute on it.

I use a backpack and ride between 7-25 miles one way depending on what route I take :-) I can easily carry my laptop in a bike specific backpack, though it is heavy I have even lugged it up mountains out of necessity (I was not in Austin).

For the days I really want to chill out I use a 700C Bianchi cross style bike with a flat bar that I can take on some light MTB trails between my house and work. On rainy days a beater that has fenders serves well--I invested $150 in the beater.

Depending on what your requirements are for work i.e. dress, etc I think the road bike a damn fine choice. I have two dedicated commuter bikes I love riding the road rig, rarely touching the other two .

I have owned campy (record, chorus) and shimano (DA, Ultegra) and for now stick with Campy 10 stuff--it has been bullet proof for me.
I'd recommend a cheap hardtail (w/slicks) or a Cross bikeSpoiledBikeDaddy
Aug 25, 2003 6:18 PM
But that's just my personal preference.

Whatever you decide, unless your commute route is just glass-smooth, go for steel. It'll help soak up the bumps.
Exactly same here:ET_SoCal
Aug 26, 2003 6:45 AM
I'm use to commuting 2 miles (each way) on 27 lb FS mountain bike, now the company's moved 4 miles further away, so researching my first road bike.
I'm looking at Steel frame, 105 components or better & maybe triple crank, for around 1K.
Still looking more at the "pre-owned" bikes, here & Ebay.