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Please help me choose my first new bike since I was 15!

(13 Posts)
LazyDoll Thu 21-Jan-16 17:54:44

I've been borrowing a friend's bike and have decided it's time to get my own.
I need a bike to cycle mostly on roads but also on towpaths and footpaths.
I used the borrowed bike to compete in a taster Tri and will be intending to do a Sprint Tri next but these are mostly on gravel paths of a local NT property.
I don't know much about bikes but have been looking at Hybrids....budget £500 max....oh and I'd like it to be white!! grin
Please share your knowledge with me!!
Thanks flowers

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Mumski45 Thu 21-Jan-16 22:14:31

Are you looking for a drop bar bike or flat bars. I would guess you might need to get used to drop bars if your doing tri events.

lavendersun Fri 22-Jan-16 09:03:46

I only know about the types of bikes I like so so am not going to try to advise you other than to say I would ask cyclists locally for bike shop recommendations and make an effort to visit two or three of them to allow you to form an opinion on bike type and fit.

We use two small local shops, both have a really good selection of used bikes, you could get a lot more for your money if you went with a used one and come in well under budget.

Some hybrids can be quite heavy (mine was).

Cycling on gravel warrants a sturdier tyre than road riding. I have used Schwalbe Marathon Plus tyres for years and never had a puncture. I ride on NT gravel paths and they are fine - I use 32's - fine for both road and gravel paths.

Of course they are not the speediest of tyres but the puncture resistance and the fact that I don't have to worry about skinny road tyres on gravel works for me.

CMOTDibbler Fri 22-Jan-16 09:18:33

I'd say that a cyclocross bike would be most suitable for you - much lighter than a hybrid, more robust than a road bike, but road bike geometry which lets you work more efficiently.

How tall are you? Unless you are very short, theres far more choice in mens bikes and theres no actual reason for a womens frame. The colour is hard as they don't tend to come in a choice



LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 13:46:13

Thanks so much for your responses.
Maybe the mention of the Tri confuses things. I'm just doing the one with no real intention of doing further (more of a runner but just giving it a go!) so maybe forget that bit!!
I definitely think flat handle bars. More for leisure and cycling with the family and on my own to get out and about into the nearby countryside when the children are at school.

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LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 13:46:35

Oh and I'm 5' 7

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lavendersun Fri 22-Jan-16 14:14:14

Evans have a few white hybrids in your budget then!

Depends on whether you want to wear a skirt or not smile as to whether you go for a women's frame.!

Personally, I like mudguards, but you might not think you need them.

I am 5'8 with long legs and I had a 20" hybrid which technically should have been too big I think but it wasn't. You need to go and sit on a few.

LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 14:33:23

Lol - no definitely not a skirt wearer whilst biking!

Considering how muddy I get running I think mudguards will be a necessity! And it sounds like we're both similar in the leg length...I'll probably need a bigger frame too. I'll go and sit on a few when I'm child free. I've just not had much luck with advice in Halfords and the nearest Evans is quite a distance.

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LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 14:35:20

What brakes and suspension do I need?? Clueless. My last bike was a mountain bike with 3 gears....confused

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CMOTDibbler Fri 22-Jan-16 14:50:09

I like disc brakes personally, but they aren't a must. You don't need suspension.

Have a look at your local bike shops, and don't discount scary looking ones. My local looks incredibly geeky (and their customers include olympians in 4 disciplines), but they are the loveliest people in there and have loads of time to advise, and are v budget conscious.

I ride a mens bike bigger than it 'should' be - my road bike is a 56cm

LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 16:01:45

Thanks CMOT there ARE two scary looking ones locally and one just up the road. I will brave them next week! One in particular is tiny from the front and has very intimidating fancy bikes hung up in the window but I'll overcome my fear as I REALLY want a bike! My friend is Tri training at the moment and we want to go out together.
Thanks a lot

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CMOTDibbler Fri 22-Jan-16 16:43:40

That sounds like my local (like 5 min walk down the road) - they put the £££££ bikes in the window, but will cheerily tell you about who is planning to replace their bike and so would be open to an offer on their old one or whatever as well.
My theory is that if people aren't helpful, I don't spend my money with them. So tell them what you want a bike for, what your budget is and see what they say. The answer might be 'we don't do that, but x would be able to help you' or they might have some great suggestions. If they ignore you, walk out!

I do think you'd be better on a drop handle personally. You don't have to be down in a totally racey geometry but they are more efficient. I do about 5mph faster on my roadbike vs my hybrid on the same route

LazyDoll Fri 22-Jan-16 20:16:52

Lol yup this one is in the next village and has intimidating bikey people hanging about outside but I will face the fear!

The 'walking out' was pretty much the long and short of it in Halfords...I was wheeling a bike about and the 2 lads there were just chatting on and totally ignoring me so I gave up! I'd rather get it from an independent shop anyhow as hopefully I could get help easier of any problems!

Thanks for your help!

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