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Bicycles [message #406337] Wed, 03 June 2009 07:17 Go to next message
Littlefoot
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I'd like to buy a new bicycle. I admit, I don't know much about them - all I know is what I've read just recently. So: it should be a trekking (some call it "cross") bike, used predominantly on asphalt roads, price shouldn't be higher than EUR 600 (USD 800).

Now, I've visited several bike shops, talked to some people and narrowed the choice to one shop as it offers the best post-sale service. Bike brands available in that shop are Cube, Winora, Steiger, Hercules, Kona, Haibike, Cannondale, Ghost and Corratec.

I understand that not all of them produce trekking bikes (I am NOT interested in MTB fullsuspension or MTB hardtail models - no downhill riding, jumps or similar); however if you own or have heard some good or bad news about any of these brands, please share.

Bike-related forums in Croatian never mentioned Winoras or Steigers (for example) - it appears that people here mostly ride Trek models, Ghosts, Scotts etc.

What bike do I like the most? It is Winora Dakar cross; although the page is in Croatian, I guess that people who are familiar with bicycles will recognize what is what (wheels, shifters, tyres, ...). Any comments on it?

Any suggestions, in general?
Re: Bicycles [message #406339 is a reply to message #406337] Wed, 03 June 2009 07:49 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michel Cadot
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I'm pretty sure there are many "bike" forums (for instance on usenet) that can help you.

Regards
Michel
Re: Bicycles [message #406341 is a reply to message #406339] Wed, 03 June 2009 07:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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I'm pretty sure that you are right, but - I don't spend that much time online. I don't visit all those forums or usenet groups, but I do visit this one and thought that some of you *must* know how to ride a bicycle and, hopefully, does that regularly (more or less) and, possibly, know something about brands I've mentioned.
Re: Bicycles [message #406344 is a reply to message #406337] Wed, 03 June 2009 08:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
joy_division
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Littlefoot wrote on Wed, 03 June 2009 08:17
Bike brands available in that shop are Cube, Winora, Steiger, Hercules, Kona, Haibike, Cannondale, Ghost and Corratec.



I am sorry that my response is going to offer no help whatsoever and probably should not have written at all, but I just want to say wow, I am really out of touch. I never heard of ANY of these brands. Now mind you, I do not own a bike nor have been in the market for one, so wouldn't necessarily know all the brands, but sheesh, not knowing ANY of them? I feel like an old man trying to have a conversation about today's music with the teenager. (ps. I am not an old man, and I am really up on music).

Brands of bikes I know are Schwinn and Huffy.
Re: Bicycles [message #406398 is a reply to message #406344] Wed, 03 June 2009 16:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Barbara Boehmer
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I did a lot of bicycle riding as a kid, but not since getting a car. I remember a one-speed Schwinn when I was younger and a 10-speed as a teenager (not sure of the brand, Raleigh?). Schwinn was always the biggest brand around, so I am surprised that it is not on your list. Perhaps it was just big in America. I did my riding on asphalt roads to get from one place to the other. There were a few steep hills, but I didn't do any sort of racing or "dirt biking".

In general, bicycles intended for use on asphalt roads have skinny tires, which is what mine had. I once made the mistake of trying to make a slow-speed left turn in some dirt around a baseball field and the wheels immediately lost traction and the bike went to the right and I fell to the left. So, if you are going to be riding in dirt anywhere, then you need wide tires with good tread. If you are going to be pedaling up any hills, then a 10-speed bike that allows you to shift gears is a lot easier to pedal than some one-speed bike. If you are going to be racing, then you want the low handle bars and you can expect to be bent over in order to be the most aerodynamic and not allow wind friction to slow you down. When I was a teenager, a lot of my classmates got 10-speed racing bikes with skinny street tires and flipped the handlebars up, instead of down, when not racing, so that they could sit upright more comfortably. One more thing that I remember is that during the era when bell-bottom pants were popular, they tended to get caught in the bicycle chain.

If I were you, I would sit on the bikes in the shop, grab the handle bars, and move your feet in a pedaling position and see if your seat and your back feel comfortable. Also, make sure that your feet can reach the ground comfortably when you stop.

Bicycle riding has changed a lot since I was a kid. Back when I rode a bicycle, bicycle helmets hadn't been invented then and neither had cell phones and a lot of other things. As a kid, I had no appreciation for the potential dangers. I remember that I could balance well enough to ride without touching the handle bars while going straight and that was a popular thing to do. Nowadays, I don't think I would get on a bicycle. The way things are now, I wouldn't even walk around my neighborhood. You're a lot more likely to get robbed than if you are in a car. Times have definitely changed. About a week ago, there was a big gang fight outside the local movie theater and one guy was stabbed to death. A couple of nights ago, the occupants of two cars were shooting at one another around the block from where I live. I hope you plan on cycling in safe areas and not alone.

My veterinarian competes in bicycle races and practices and keeps in shape and saves money on gas by bicycling back and forth to work some days. One day, while en route to work, he was stung by a bee, and ended up in the hospital. Apparently he had never been stung before, so he did not know he was allergic and went into anaphylactic shock. He still rides alone, but now he carries epinephrine and a cell phone. On a comic side note, I went to his veterinary office one day with one of my cats for an appointment and was waiting for quite a while and getting some vague run-around from the desk personnel about why he wasn't available yet. They said he was there, but couldn't see customers yet, and didn't know when he could and they couldn't say why. I found out later that he had forgotten to bring his work clothes and didn't want to be seen my customers in his bicycle shorts and was waiting for his wife to drive there with some clothes from home.

I am sure there are a lot of new features that make bicycles faster, smoother, easier to pedal, more comfortable, and so on. I know, for example, that I have heard the term "Shimano derailleur", but I have no idea what it is. I imagine the people at the bike shop should be able to explain all the options to you and you can decide what features are worth the price for your purposes. However, it seems like salesmen always try to sell you the most expensive thing and convince you that you need it.




Re: Bicycles [message #406432 is a reply to message #406398] Thu, 04 June 2009 00:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Well, some of the brands I have mentioned actually *are* from the US (such as Cannondale (corporate HQ in Bethel, Connecticut), but OK - I understand that they might be unknown to you, just as they were unknown to me just a few weeks ago.

Barbara, your community hangout post is as wonderful as always; I really, really enjoy reading them!

After doing some research, I have a general idea of what I want; as I won't ride off-road, I don't need wide tyres, suspensions, extra durable components etc.. Also, as I won't race, I don't need this kind of bicycles (very light, large wheels with slick tyres, ...). What I need is something "in between".
Salesman has offered not only to sit on a bike, but also to ride it for a while (not in term of days or hours, but minutes!) in order to see whether it feels comfortable or not. That's what I plan to do one of these days.

BB
I hope you plan on cycling in safe areas and not alone.
Fortunately, life over here differs significantly from where you live - I (we) can still move around freely, not being afraid of being robbed or something like that. Our police reports consist mostly of traffic accidents, burglaries, drunk people harrasting the neighbourhood and similar. Though, there have been bank robberies or murders (a few nasty ones recently), but not where I live. Our 30.000 people town is quite peaceful.

Oh yes, the veterinarian cloth story is amazing, hahahhah!
Re: Bicycles [message #406536 is a reply to message #406432] Thu, 04 June 2009 08:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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There is a style of bike called a "Touring Bicycle". It is a bit like a road bike (turned down handlebars, bum up, head down, skinny tyres) except for a number of modifications that make it suitable for travelling long distances on firm surfaces; namely fatter tyres, stronger frame, many water-bottle cleats, and mounts for front and back panier racks.

I have two such touring bikes; a tandem and a regular bike.

I can strongly recommend the Mongoose Randonneur, which is an entry-level touring bike and one of the few available here in Australia. It cost me $1000AUD about 5 years ago.

Being a bit of a specialist item, I do not believe there a any "bad" touring bikes. Makers of bad bikes stick to easy markets such as hybrids.

It sounds ideally suited to your purpose (which is exactly what I was looking for in a bike). They can be hard to find and some are very expensive. If you give up, you can get a good 700mm hybrid (eg. Trek) and add - if you can afford them - road-bars to get a very similar result.
Re: Bicycles [message #406619 is a reply to message #406536] Fri, 05 June 2009 00:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Thank you, Ross!

I'm afraid that brands you have mentioned aren't available in my far distant country, but never mind - I got the idea. Touring bicycle is something I need; not with all the equipment (watter supplies, racks) - not now, that is. I'd like to buy a bike which will carry me to work, nearby grocery store, cinema and, occasionally, 30-40 km tours on asphalt (to visit my parents, for example).

Price you mentioned (AUD 1000) fits what I'm willing to spend, and is on my top limit; wouldn't want to spend more.

The weather turned from hot to cold in a matter of days (although it is just a few weeks till the Summer is about to come) so - I have postponed my next visit to the bike shop. Next week, maybe!
Re: Bicycles [message #406702 is a reply to message #406619] Fri, 05 June 2009 07:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rleishman
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Registered: October 2005
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If Croatia is anything like Melbourne, a touring bike won't be simple thing to find. There's only about two or three stores here that carry ANY AT ALL in a city of 4m or so people.

Amongst the most popular touring bikes are tandems. If you search for a store that carry tandems as a specialty, then you might find touring bikes there.

I reckon Google is your friend on this one.

If you are interested in all kinds of bike advice, check out Sheldon Brown's web site http://www.sheldonbrown.com/ - he's the Tom Kyte of cycling.
Re: Bicycles [message #406723 is a reply to message #406702] Fri, 05 June 2009 08:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Frank
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rleishman wrote on Fri, 05 June 2009 14:50
If you are interested in all kinds of bike advice, check out Sheldon Brown's web site http://www.sheldonbrown.com/ - he's the Tom Kyte of cycling.

Lol. Does cycling also have its DB?
Re: Bicycles [message #421280 is a reply to message #406723] Mon, 07 September 2009 04:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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OK then, I've purchased a bicycle a couple of months ago; it is Winora Dakar Cross (mentioned in the first message). First 500 km were pure joy if compared to my old bike. It looks like this:

./fa/6753/0/
Re: Bicycles [message #421314 is a reply to message #421280] Mon, 07 September 2009 07:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
dr.s.raghunathan
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with the riding posture of yours with cycle, would have thrown some happy loomed event
Re: Bicycles [message #424046 is a reply to message #421314] Wed, 30 September 2009 01:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Jason8Pang
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Registered: March 2009
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the brand of the bicycle is too many,I think you are in trouble.we have not the trouble in china.we usually take bus.

[Updated on: Wed, 30 September 2009 01:20]

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Re: Bicycles [message #466446 is a reply to message #421280] Mon, 19 July 2010 12:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Barbara Boehmer
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My bicycle racing veterinarian had a minor crash in the midst of a race. Damages to the bike's handlebars and the vet's right cheek are shown below.

http://twitpic.com/24gij3

http://twitpic.com/24hywa

[Updated on: Mon, 19 July 2010 12:58]

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Re: Bicycles [message #466484 is a reply to message #466446] Mon, 19 July 2010 21:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
ramoradba
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Ouch Sad
Re: Bicycles [message #466521 is a reply to message #466484] Tue, 20 July 2010 00:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Littlefoot
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Quote:
Oldest son made sure Mom could get a good shot of this one.

LOL, hahahah! I'm sure it wasn't that funny on his side.

BTW, what a nice KHS he has! How fast can he make it run? What is his personal record - do you know it, perhaps, Barbara?
Re: Bicycles [message #466739 is a reply to message #466521] Tue, 20 July 2010 16:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Barbara Boehmer
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I was trying to find out what KHS stands for and finally discovered it stands for Kung Hsue She which is Taiwanese. I don't know what his times and distances and such are.

Re: Bicycles [message #466765 is a reply to message #466739] Wed, 21 July 2010 00:45 Go to previous message
Littlefoot
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Your search was successful (as opposed to mine). Wikipedia suggests that it is a far east brand, but that was all. The acronymfinder site mostly finds different "K" High School(s), so I gave up.
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