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Author Topic: Bike Recommendations Please!

Posts: 7
Post Bike Recommendations Please!
on: August 7, 2013, 13:31

Hi ladies,

After Dimity's Iron Mother I am very interested in doing a sprint triathlon. The only problem is, my bike! I had an old mountain bike that is very beat up. When I went for a tune up, the shop told me it would cost around $200 to fix, so it isn't worth it.

Any suggestions for a decent road bike that is around $250? I am a beginner, so I don't want to spend a lot of money on a fancy bike, just something decent that will work for a race and leisure.

Any suggestions?


Ang J

Posts: 367
Post Re: Bike Recommendations Please!
on: August 8, 2013, 05:02

I don't know a ton about bikes but I'll give you my $.02. $250 is not a lot of money for a "decent" road bike. I'm involved with bicycle group and most people recommend against just going down to Walmart and buying something off the shelf. You *could* have success looking for a used bike, via online listings, or even better, if you have a local bike group or bike advocacy group there could be people selling used there. Bike shops also have or know of sources of used bikes. It's best to talk to people who know the sport because if you explain your needs they'll be able to point you to something suitable for you, hopefully close to your price range.

My bike is a Giant flat bar road bike (a lot of people would call that a hybrid, but it really doesn't have mountain bike features - it has tires with little tread, no shocks, a standard frame; I could put drop bars and skinny tires on it if I wanted). I use it primarily for utility - I have a rack and panniers for running errands - but if I wanted to do a sprint tri I would use it. It's fine for longer rides as well. I met a woman who had my bike and she said she'd used it for triathlons. She said there weren't many people with flat bar bikes, but there were a few, and they work just fine if need be. I bought my bike new and I think it was $500 or so, but that was about six years ago now.

The advantage of a true road bike is the skinny, high pressure tires, which help you go faster. My husband, who has a long commute to work, traded in his flat bar road bike for a used Trek road bike. It's about 20 years old (we'll call it "vintage") and is in great shape. My dad still has his classic steel frame Schwinn road bike from the '70s (when they were still American made) and it's also still a great bike. If you're lucky you might know someone with one of these bikes just sitting in the garage and if the frame is the right size you could get it refurbished for a couple hundred bucks and have a better bike than you could get new at a big box store. The disadvantage of road bikes is that they're not so useful for anything other than riding fast. Some people don't care about that, but for me that matters.

So, the short answer is find some people who know about bikes and listen to what they have to say! Good luck.


Posts: 48
Post Re: Bike Recommendations Please!
on: August 8, 2013, 11:06

I am in a similar situation. I have two bikes but neither of them are going to work for a tri (unless the "tri" is for "tricycle"). Hubby thought we could put new gears or soemthing on my cheapo Target bike but the guy at the bike shop told me playing around like that never seems to work end up having to modify more and more. go toa bike store and tell them what you are doing. ask about sales and instore brands. Performance Bicycle has their own brand and the quality seems good and the prices were fantastic (in comparison).

good luck!

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