Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

...with good intentions. Discuss road riding, commuting, routes, etc.
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herrBiermann
Posts: 70

Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby herrBiermann » Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:41 am

I'm looking to pick up my first road bike. I imagine I'll probably be going the used route. I just want something to ride around when the trails are wet or when I don't feel like driving to them. I'd be fine with something from the late 80's. I just don't want a junker. There are quite a few bikes on craigslist but I have no idea what is worth buying and what's not.

Any suggestions on where to look other than craigslist? Is there a good website that covers older bikes so I know how much I should pay for something?

breed007
Posts: 1162
Location: PV

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby breed007 » Sun Feb 15, 2015 12:07 pm

What's your price range?

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Snoopy
Posts: 115
Location: Peculiar

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby Snoopy » Sun Feb 15, 2015 12:08 pm

What's ur max price? And what do u expect a typical ride to look like for you?
HAVE YOU WHEELIED ANYTHING TODAY?

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herrBiermann
Posts: 70

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby herrBiermann » Sun Feb 15, 2015 12:20 pm

Snoopy wrote:What's ur max price? And what do u expect a typical ride to look like for you?


Probably don't want to spend more than $400 atm. I may be willing to go a little higher if something is a really good deal.

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Snoopy
Posts: 115
Location: Peculiar

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby Snoopy » Sun Feb 15, 2015 12:24 pm

U can get a decent used aluminum frame roadbike for $400 that's only 5 to 10 years old. I'd recommend that over an older bike from the 80's or 90's for the weight and ease having the shifters on the handlebars integrated into the brake levers.
HAVE YOU WHEELIED ANYTHING TODAY?

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Flowrida
Posts: 1369
Location: Eastern Jackson County, where the grass is green and the girls are pretty

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby Flowrida » Sun Feb 15, 2015 1:53 pm

If you come from a mountain bike background I'd recommend looking at cross bikes. They give you a lot more options than a road bike. Gravel, grass, trail, road, etc. They don't do any one thing really well but they do a lot of things pretty good. You can put some narrow road tires on and ride asphalt or mount up some wider cross tires and hit gravel.

As Snoop was talking about the newer road bikes have an integrated shifter/brake lever, aka "brifters." You press the paddle down one way and it drops gears, push the brake lever combo to the side and it shifts up. To brake you just squeeze the brake lever like normal. Its really a pretty slick set up compared to mt shifters/brake combos, until it breaks...

If you look on CL you can find some decent road or cx bikes in the $400-$600 range. If you see something you like check out http://www.bikepedia.com/ and it will give you the basic run down on the bike. You might have to sort through the color combos to find the right year you are looking for.

Be sure to find a good fit. One brand's 56 cm bike may feel a lot different than another brands. You can adjust the stem length/angle just like a mountain bike and it gives you some flexibility in the reach department.

Finding a used bike that is in your price range and that fits is a PITA. Be sure to take your time and don't settle on something that does not fit or does not meet your needs.
I like to complain and do nothing to make things better. Kurt Cobain

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watts888
Posts: 1270
Location: Overland Park

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby watts888 » Sun Feb 15, 2015 3:42 pm

I have a hybrid. It's OK. With a second wheel set you can almost get the same concept. If you just want to try a road bike, keep an eye out with pawn shops, good will, salvation army, etc... Should find something from the 90s for less than $100. I found a trek once for $20 that needed cleaning and new cables. Completely wrong size for me though.
Although road bike are the devil, if you really want a cheap, good bike, go with a 5-10 year old one with brifters.
"A hundred travel books isn't worth one real trip"

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Snoopy
Posts: 115
Location: Peculiar

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby Snoopy » Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:17 pm

I'll second the notion of not settling for a bike that doesn't fit u just right. To me, it seems even more crucial on a road bike than a mountain bike. I settled for what the rule of thumb told me I should be riding based on my height, but my arms aren't that long, so I know I fit much better on a 54. So now I'm considering selling my 56. If u don't know what u fit on, just try out as many bikes as possible, ask a lot of questions at bike shops, and it'll become clear. Sorry for the lecture. Just hope someone learns from my mistake.
HAVE YOU WHEELIED ANYTHING TODAY?

breed007
Posts: 1162
Location: PV

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby breed007 » Mon Feb 16, 2015 5:20 am

I would suggest posting a "WTB" post on various internet/Facebook forums. Selling bikes sucks and I'd bet a lot of people might have an old road bike sitting around they'd love to get rid of if they knew there was a buyer.

muxon
Posts: 339

Re: Looking for first road bike - Need help/suggestions

Postby muxon » Tue Feb 17, 2015 10:50 am

http://www.bicyclebluebook.com/ will give you a decent idea of value, although our Craigslist prices are usually a bit higher than this suggests, just because the volume of quality used bikes is pretty low here.

I started road riding with an old rigid steel mountain bike that I put 26" slicks on. It was much better than just riding my full suspension mountain bike on gravel trails and paved roads. From there I moved to a steel touring/cross bike with narrower 700x25c tires that gave it more of a typical road feel, with the option of wider knobby cross tires. Look for Shimano Sora or higher integrated brake/shift levers on drop bars. It's fairly rare to find these in the sub-$400 range, although it does happen. You might start with the cheap converted MTB while you wait for the right deal to come along on an entry level road bike.
Scott Smith
Redline Monocog 29er | Cannondale CAAD10 | Diamondback CCX | Jamis Aurora
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