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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    38

    trying out new bikes

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    I need advice on buying a new bike. My current bike is too small, and my preferred riding position is more stretched out than it used to be.
    I got a very good bike fit. The bikes that fit were a 51 cm Cannondale Synapse and a 50 cm Trek Lexa. I will be test riding their carbon bikes in a few weeks.

    - I plan to keep this bike for 8 - 10 years. Is it worth it to get a new bike or should I shop for a used bike?

    - Is the carbon bike worth it? I currently ride about 13 -14 mph. I'm too slow for the groups that ride longer distances. On the other hand, if I could find people that I'm comfortable with, I really love longer rides (40 - 60 miles or more). I also find that if I don't have company, I don't ride nearly as much.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Katy, Texas
    Posts
    1,811

    trying out new bikes

    Personally, if I were planing to keep the bike 8-10 years I would invest the money in a new bike. For one thing, most bike shops will give you some sort of warranty on a new bike and sometimes a free 6 month adjustment tune up. I definitely think that carbon is worth its price. I can't say the carbon bike added a lot of speed to my rate although it did improve it some but the ride is definitely worth it over the miles.

    As for riding in groups and riding alone, I think you have to figure it out for your self. I rode solo for years and found that I had a hard time really motivating myself. Yes I was getting in the miles but I was on a plateau. I started doing tours as a way to Plus it is a long term investment in your health,safety and sanity. learn to ride with a group and for the socialization. For the past three or four years I have been riding at least one a week with a group, mostly for distance, but it gives me the incentive to push myself on the days I ride solo.
    marni
    Katy, Texas
    Trek Madone 6.5- "Red"
    Trek Pilot 5.2- " Bebe"


    "easily outrun by a chihuahua."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    93
    +1 on the new bike, if you're planning to keep it for that long.

    As for groups, can you find a recreational club in your area that's not full of the racer dudes. The club I belong to has all different levels of riding, from ambling along to 100 mile hammerfests. So I do 40-50 miles or so with people, but a slowish pace. Or look at Meetup, which may also offer something like that. I rode last week on a stay-together 60km ride at an average speed of around 20km/h. It was lovely.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    38
    Thanks for your input! Boudicca, your group sounds lovely.

    I've decided to spend some time looking for a used carbon bike. I decided it was the best compromise -- get the bike that I want at a price that I can live with.

    Thanks a lot.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    South Central Indiana
    Posts
    624
    For a bike that small, you may be waiting awhile for a used bike. If you're okay with that. I ride bikes just a tad smaller and find that road bikes are particularly difficult to come by. I just sold a WSD trek with carbon fork for about $50.00 more than the blue book value for "excellent" and more than $100.00 for "good" within about 36 hours on CL. They are hard to come by, so people rush to buy them. That was a 47 cm but you are looking at something similar that's only a bit bigger and, in my experience of buying and selling bikes on CL, I can pick up a bike for cheapish, put about 2 hours of labor in cleaning it up, replacing a chain and tires, etc. and flip it for $50-$100.00 more than I paid in about a week. They are just that hard to come by that people will spend the money and want to be the first to see it. The last two times, people drove here from out of town (STL which is 2 hours away) to look at and buy a bike.

    I will say this, most of what goes into "speed" is the motor (you). I am not saying a carbon frame won't help. It probably will a bit. However, the motor is the most important thing. I now have a steel frame Surly. I did better on speed and mileage on this bike over the past week than my old road bike on the trail because the geometry is more comfortable for me and I just like the feel of it. If you like carbon bikes and you like your geometry , you will probably do better on a carbon bike just because it feels comfy. That's fine but my point is that you could do that on a less-expensive non-carbon bike or one with a carbon fork for less if you liked the geometry and had a good fit. Carbon will not miraculously improve your speed. A good fit will allow you to be fitter and that will.

    And yeah, depending on the area, clubs may be easier/harder to come by. I find in this area that I prefer to ride alone or with my BF because the only groups we have are either really relaxed and quite slow or very fast and competitive. I'm somewhere between the 17mph riders and the 13mph riders (about 15-16 depending on the day) and I don't really "fit" in either ride well. However, where I used to live, the club rides seemed most suited to about 15 mph, long-haul riders that weren't competitive but just happy to be out on bikes. It just depends.
    ***proud Hoosier, statistics nerd, and mom to a headstrong toddler***
    ****one car family and loving it!****

    Owned by:
    Le Monstre Vert - 2013 Surly Cross-check
    Chessie, Scottish Terrier
    Bonzai, Catahoula Leopard Dog

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,763
    Quote Originally Posted by colorisnt View Post
    For a bike that small, you may be waiting awhile for a used bike. If you're okay with that. I ride bikes just a tad smaller and find that road bikes are particularly difficult to come by. I just sold a WSD trek with carbon fork for about $50.00 more than the blue book value for "excellent" and more than $100.00 for "good" within about 36 hours on CL.
    There's a "Blue Book" for used bikes? Is it public? If so, please post a link!

    Re. finding used smaller bikes, I've both bought and sold 'em on Ebay, Craigslist, and here, so it can be done. But you do have to be patient. I was the only bidder on the 2006 47cm Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD (full carbon, Ultegra) I found on Ebay for $700. However, the auction ended on Christmas Eve (this was in 2012), so I don't think too many others were looking at that time. I don't know what the "Blue Book" value is, but I was happy with the deal I got -- and the bike. One wheel needed truing, and there were some paint chips (which I've since touched up with nail polish), but overall it was in very good condition. I even like the stock saddle, much to my surprise!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  7. #7
    Jolt is offline Dodging the potholes...
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Southern Maine
    Posts
    1,668
    www.bicyclebluebook.com

    You can search for the particular make/model/year and it will give you the value of the bike depending on the condition it is in. Great for both selling and buying (I used the information to negotiate a great price on the bike I just bought from somebody on Craigslist). As far as finding used small bikes, you may be surprised by what shows up on CL etc. so I'd recommend checking every day or two once you have some ideas of bikes you'd like. That's what I did and something great turned up quite quickly, for a good price too.
    Last edited by Jolt; 04-21-2014 at 07:49 AM.
    2011 Surly LHT
    1995 Trek 830

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    South Central Indiana
    Posts
    624
    Yep Bicycle Blue Book FTW!

    It's pretty helpful. Your LBS also may be helpful if you are a loyal customer and they don't do a lot of used volume. Mine does not, so trade ins with road bikes are hit and miss. They gave me a much better deal on my MTB because that's what they are most likely to sell quickly for a "better" price. Their comp was slightly higher than BBB but not by much.

    And I agree that you have to be fairly patient but you can find them. It's just a chore haha. Some people look at it as an adventure (I do when I get a wild hair to search) but it's not always fun if you have a deadline. And, honestly, your bike does not make you that much faster. A good fit can but a carbon frame will only do so much. I was always taught by everyone I started really riding with that it was the motor and fit not the material and weight that was going to make a huge difference (assuming that most road bikes are fairly light, of course). If you want carbon, totally go for it, just realize that there may be other issues at play and if you don't know much about fit, CL bikes or ebay bikes may not be the best place to start. Getting fitted on your current mount may be better. YMMV.
    ***proud Hoosier, statistics nerd, and mom to a headstrong toddler***
    ****one car family and loving it!****

    Owned by:
    Le Monstre Vert - 2013 Surly Cross-check
    Chessie, Scottish Terrier
    Bonzai, Catahoula Leopard Dog

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,763
    Quote Originally Posted by Jolt View Post
    Thanks so much, Jolt! I had no idea this existed. I don't have any current plans to buy or sell any bikes, but at some point in the future, I am sure I will. This is a great resource!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    113
    is there some sort of CL meta search that would allow you to include multiple regions in a single search query, or a way to browse a single category in multiple regions at once? i haven't used CL, but that awful layout doesn't really seem to allow for casual, non-specific browsing at all, unless i'm missing something :/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,763
    Yes! Check out www.searchtempest.com...and good luck!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,897
    Quote Originally Posted by rain View Post
    I need advice on buying a new bike. My current bike is too small, and my preferred riding position is more stretched out than it used to be.
    I got a very good bike fit. The bikes that fit were a 51 cm Cannondale Synapse and a 50 cm Trek Lexa. I will be test riding their carbon bikes in a few weeks.

    - I plan to keep this bike for 8 - 10 years. Is it worth it to get a new bike or should I shop for a used bike?

    - Is the carbon bike worth it? I currently ride about 13 -14 mph. I'm too slow for the groups that ride longer distances. On the other hand, if I could find people that I'm comfortable with, I really love longer rides (40 - 60 miles or more). I also find that if I don't have company, I don't ride nearly as much.

    Thanks.
    Where in Maryland are you? I average 14 mph, give or take a few mph on any given ride. The Oxon Hill Club in southern Maryland offers longer rides at that speed. I think you might find some Baltimore Bicycling Club rides that work for you, too, though I'm not as familiar with their schedule.

    - Gray 2010 carbon WSD road bike, Rivet Independence saddle
    - Red hardtail 26" aluminum mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle
    - Royal blue 2018 aluminum gravel bike, Rivet Pearl saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver 2003 aluminum road bike
    - Two awesome worn out Juliana saddles

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    81
    Have you tried a steel bike? You can get a really nice and light steel that makes riding on and off road much nicer, in my opinion.
    I much prefer steel to carbon.

 

 

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