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New rider! Help me decide on a bike and gear!

Boilerfan91Boilerfan91 Posts: 8
edited March 2016 in Road buying advice
Hello all!

I have been planning to break into the world of road cycling for more than a year now. Funds are finally available to acquire a cycle and gear, so I'm looking to do so within the next month.

I am a 25 yo Army Veteran and full time Ecology\Forestry student located in Northwest Indiana. I have a bike trail local to me that is 30+ miles. I intend on riding both the trail and local roads in the area. The longer the trips the better. My main goal at this point is exercise and adventure. In the future I would like to possibly enter into the world of racing.

I am 6'0 220 lbs at the moment. I have gained some weight after leaving the military and would like to get back to my fighting weight of 180 lbs.

My total budget is maximum of $2,500. This is to include the cycle and all necessary gear. Only necessary summer gear for now. I do plan on riding whenever possible in the winter, but winter gear will be purchased when necessary.

What would you recommend for new or used cycles? What gear?

I am very excited to get started and look forward to your advice!

Thanks in advance!


  • Ste_SSte_S Posts: 1,173
    What's your bike trail like ? If it's rough and want some versatility in where you can ride, you'll want something with good tyre clearances - Gravel/Adventure/Cyclocross bikes can handle some off-road with fatter/knobbly tyres whilst still being ok on tarmac.
    If your bike trail is tarmac/concrete, you can consider a pure road bike. This is generally the kind of bike you'll want if you ever want to race on the roads. Generally they'll fall into too camps - more relaxed geometry for a more upright position on the bike, more aggresive for a more racier 'flat back' position. You can change between the two to some extent with stem length and angle.

    Generally there isn't too much difference between bikes of equivalent types now, and it'll generally come down to which bike looks the nicest to you. Having bought a new bike recently I did the rounds of the local bike shops (with a lot of looking at bikes online too) before settling on a bike, and it was the one that looked the best (in my opinion !)
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