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Buying a bike - Advice Needed!!! watch

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    Hi guys,

    I'm hoping to buy a nice (pedal) bike to whip around Edinburgh on as I'm sick of waiting on buses for a year. The schedule on a Sunday night is a right pain and I'd appreciate the free exercise!

    So, I know virtually nothing about bikes but would like something reliable, fast (ok it's as fast as I can pedal but the gears are important, right?), solid (I'm prone to crashing), and rather cool looking. Oh and price is most definitely a factor!

    Does anyone have any reccommendations?

    Thanks!
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    Hmm...well from experience I'd say even if price is such a major factor, buying a cheap used bike from a friend may not be the best option.

    It might be cheaper, but in the long run with the maintenance and shorter life span you'll probably have to deal with, it's not the better value.
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    budget?
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    First you must determine whether you want a mountain bike, a hybrid or a hybrid mountain bike (basically mountain bike frame with thin tyres). I would always recommend Specialized, but it's all down to your budget as bikes can cost an ample amount. For example, I got my Specialized Hardrock from ebay via local pickup for an amazing £200, 24 gears, double disc etc..
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    Umm right, probably looking at £150 absolute maximum because I'm strapped for cash.

    A mountain bike sounds good because I fancy the suspension and I like fatter tires. I can live with a cheapish bike because I'm not really going to be after crazy performance. As long as it can go as fast as I can, and is pretty solid to ride (good suspension, tires that cope with most conditions, easy to maintain) then I'm happy!
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    If it's just for nipping around Edinburgh and you're not planning on taking it off-road, you don't need to spend a fortune.

    I have two bikes - a decent one that cost me a good few hundred pounds I use when taking up hills or on long Sunday cycles etc., and a cheap one from Halfords (Apollo I think) that I got for scooting around the town. It cost me about £140 I think and has done me fine for a year and a half now.

    It's a mountain bike with front suspension only (don't need rear suspension), 18 gears, disc brakes and has suited me perfectly.

    Buying a cheaper bike means you don't have to worry as much when you have it chained up when you're at work / in a shop etc. as well.

    It might also be worth looking in the small ads, sometimes you get folk practically giving good bikes in great condition away for various factors (lack of space and things like that, for example).
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    If it was me and I was wanting a bike purely to nip around town on, I would find the crappiest looking hump of junk possible. Reason? A £150 bike isn't really going to be of any quality anyway as the parts and frame will be cheap and nasty. However, what is very certain is that if you leave a nice looking bike locked up somewhere, it will more than likely get stolen. An old banger will do the job, save you money, and if it does get stolen by drunk students or whoever then you're not going to be upset.

    You are not going to get anything suspension wise that is worth having at that price range, and to be honest, why would you want it? Riding round streets doesn't need suspension, it's for going down steep hills at a rate of knots. Just a gimic, ignore it. As an aside to this, you will also find that having suspension compromises the speed that you can reach. This is why road bikes for instance have no suspension, and never will do. (OK, I know about the softride TT bikes, but aside from that) You can get some slick tyres to help you go faster and replace the knobbly ones that it will probably come with.
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    Hmm alright, looking at the Halfords website, would something like this do? http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/s...egoryId_165499

    Seems alright...
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    By the sound of it, you want to get a hybrid, or road bike. It would probably be far more suitable for you.
    It should be far more suitable for your needs, and it will not weigh as much as a mountain bike.
    You should be able to pick up a decent bike, that will suit you for about £200.
    Try not to go below that, because the quality of the components, frame, and all that will fall dramatically.
    (Original post by rubles)
    Hmm alright, looking at the Halfords website, would something like this do? http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/s...egoryId_165499

    Seems alright...
    It seems that way, but stay away from that bike.
    They're awful, I know this for a fact.
    You want to look more at Subway 1. Or even the Subway Zero. It's a single speed, but has the same frame and most of the parts if I remember.
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    Very pricey! What's wrong with the other one? I'm not a mad biker so I'm not too bothered about performance parts!
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    (Original post by rubles)
    Very pricey! What's wrong with the other one? I'm not a mad biker so I'm not too bothered about performance parts!
    The parts are weak, the wheels a ropey, the frame isn't much to write home about.
    By the sounds of it, you will be using it quite often.
    The parts on the Subway aren't performance parts. They'll just last longer, and work without problems.
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    Right ok, well you've convinced me! Seems I'll have to be saving for a wee bit but hopefully it'll be worth it!

    Thanks for the advice!
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    (Original post by rubles)
    Hi guys,

    I'm hoping to buy a nice (pedal) bike to whip around Edinburgh on as I'm sick of waiting on buses for a year. The schedule on a Sunday night is a right pain and I'd appreciate the free exercise!

    So, I know virtually nothing about bikes but would like something reliable, fast (ok it's as fast as I can pedal but the gears are important, right?), solid (I'm prone to crashing), and rather cool looking. Oh and price is most definitely a factor!

    Does anyone have any reccommendations?

    Thanks!
    I was in the same situation, need a cheap bike for Uni, and I can tell you that there is no way you will get a reliable bike for under £200.

    Those bikes fall apart and are riddled with problems, not worth the hassle of constantly fixing them and being scared to go fast incase something just breaks!

    I bought a Carrera Vulcan XT for £230, its really good and reliable (so far, touch wood). My friend is a bike expert and he says its one of the best deals in Halfords, the gears and drive chain are made by Sram, which are more reliable than the usual Shimano, and you normally have to go into the £300-£400 price range to get Sram gears!

    You should consider a non-suspension Carrera bike, they are soo fast.
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    (Original post by Ironmike)
    If it was me and I was wanting a bike purely to nip around town on, I would find the crappiest looking hump of junk possible. Reason? A £150 bike isn't really going to be of any quality anyway as the parts and frame will be cheap and nasty. However, what is very certain is that if you leave a nice looking bike locked up somewhere, it will more than likely get stolen. An old banger will do the job, save you money, and if it does get stolen by drunk students or whoever then you're not going to be upset.

    You are not going to get anything suspension wise that is worth having at that price range, and to be honest, why would you want it? Riding round streets doesn't need suspension, it's for going down steep hills at a rate of knots. Just a gimic, ignore it. As an aside to this, you will also find that having suspension compromises the speed that you can reach. This is why road bikes for instance have no suspension, and never will do. (OK, I know about the softride TT bikes, but aside from that) You can get some slick tyres to help you go faster and replace the knobbly ones that it will probably come with.
    Softride TT bikes? Never heard of those but they sound like the gayest thing ever. What kind of self-respecting roadie has suspension?

    Anyway, I've got to agree with you, at least if you're talking about new bikes. At £150, anything you get new will suck, although my road bike cost me £150 (1992 steel frame giant racing bike) and is a real workhorse. I did kind of ruin the cheapness of it when I got a £200 wheelset though.
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    You want a bike that doesn't look too good - most people riding a bike daily don't ride top end. You don't need suspension and at your budget, you can't get decent sus so don't bother looking for it. You need a fully rigid hybrid / road bike that can take a bit of a beating.
    Save up more as you are really in cheap tat territory there. Also - go to bike shops (decent, not Halfrauds) and ask them what they would recommend as you are shopping for a bike. Then, take their advice and see whether the same bike can be found second hand in your area.

    You need to budget for lights, decent lock, helmet, waterproofs and (I know they are not cool, but essential for commuting) mudguards. Oh - puncture repair kit and pump too.
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    (Original post by ProStacker)
    decent, not Halfrauds
    There are certain bikes which are good from Halfords - the Boardman range is very highly regarded, at least. The problem is that none of them are anywhere near the £150 budget.
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    I'd agree that the Boardman range is great and there are some other decent bikes there - but the staff are not the people I'd send a 'beginner' to for advice.
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    (Original post by ProStacker)
    I'd agree that the Boardman range is great and there are some other decent bikes there - but the staff are not the people I'd send a 'beginner' to for advice.
    Unfortunately, it depends what store you go to really.
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    yeah get a good chain....Edinburgh is the bike crime capital of the UK after all!
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    (Original post by latentcorpse)
    yeah get a good chain....Edinburgh is the bike crime capital of the UK after all!
    Umm, have you tried the East End of London?! Two bikes gone in less than six months!

    Also, I just wanted to add I've been riding the Carrera Subway 1 that was already posted and it's been very very good to me. just listen to the advice you've been given and check out your local bike shop.
 
 
 
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