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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife's 505/130 showing athletic interest in cycling yet has no road bike. What's the point of diminishing returns for a new rider purchase with competitive spirit. I'm ball parking $1500.00 plus pedals shoes gear. Looking for the most product until ridden miles confirms riding is a hobby not theory, who gets the business. Recommendations appreciared.

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Darling of The Lounge
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What are you saying?

It's early here and I haven't started on my first cup of coffee yet.

My brain is processing the following:

Your wife is 5'5" and 130 lbs, and you like to know if $1500 is too much to spend on a road bike along with full acessories, given that her interest in cycling might be a passing fad.

Is this correct?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It is early, agreed. Apologies for the spelling/fragments too..

Clarification (maybe) I'm looking to purchase a road bike for my wife. The style of riding will be sport/aggressive as she is prone to be athletically competitive. I'm not interested in spending a mint to determine her interests are not how I perceive so I'm choosing $1500.00 as a projected budget for an initial road bicycle purchase. Im also trying to avoid her immediately wishing for upgraded equipment after the acquisition hence the $1500.00 price point. I'm asking what's the best make/model at this level of expense.
 

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The best bike is the bike that fits, is not damaged, and meets your riding style/needs. It could be a well cared for used bike or a new bike. No one can tell you what the "best" bike is anymore than they could tell you what the best computer/car/cereal is. And even if you think that this knowledge is somehow available, just page through this section of the forum and you'll find literally hundreds of threads asking the same question.
 

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Why not find her a used bike on Craigslist or someplace else before you drop $2K on a bike and gear? That's a lot of $ to spend if she doesn't care for it. If she likes it after a few months, then resell the bike and go buy a new one.
 

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I also vote CraigsList. I found my 105-equipped Ridley for $700, and haven't once regretted it. I was shopping for CAAD10's at the LBS, and I just couldn't bring myself to drop $1600, especially knowing I'd need some other pieces of gear to go along with it.

Whichever route you take, be patient, and wait until she finds the bike that fits best.
 

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It is early, agreed. Apologies for the spelling/fragments too..

Clarification (maybe) I'm looking to purchase a road bike for my wife. The style of riding will be sport/aggressive as she is prone to be athletically competitive. I'm not interested in spending a mint to determine her interests are not how I perceive so I'm choosing $1500.00 as a projected budget for an initial road bicycle purchase. Im also trying to avoid her immediately wishing for upgraded equipment after the acquisition hence the $1500.00 price point. I'm asking what's the best make/model at this level of expense.
The one sold to you by someone who understands bike fitting and putting the appropriate bike under the rider. Double so for someone who's just starting out thus likely doesn't know for themself what would suite them best.
 

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Best to get a used road bike and make sure you test ride it first. In fact, test ride a few bikes before making a purchase. Look for a used bike for around $800-1,000 and figure the rest of the add ons will bring your total cost to less than $1,500. I have a Trek and love it. The tires are very important, if the bikes have junk tires like my new bike came with, definitely get a quality tire like Continental and nothing smaller than 25.
 

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My brand new Trek 2.3 cost right around $1K, IIRC, when I bought her in 2010. Not sure how much the prices have gone up, but I can't imagine a better buy for the price. Full 105, exceptionally comfortable bike to ride, and so on.

I think within your planned budget you will find a great deal (new), perhaps even a spectacular deal (used).

Happy hunting, and BTW, good on ya for your choice of a gift!!
 

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The best bike is the bike that fits, is not damaged, and meets your riding style/needs. It could be a well cared for used bike or a new bike. No one can tell you what the "best" bike is anymore than they could tell you what the best computer/car/cereal is. And even if you think that this knowledge is somehow available, just page through this section of the forum and you'll find literally hundreds of threads asking the same question.
Agreed. Craigslist is overrated in my opinion. I haunted craigslist a long time without finding anything interesting or very price competitive. I started visiting the CL sites at other cities and found the same thing, although oddly, there seemed to be city to city differences. Tucson for some reason seemed to have more good listings than Phoenix. I have no idea why, or if it was just happenstance.

$1500 bucks should be plenty for a first bike.

In a way, bikes are kind of a commodity, in that there is not much point in brand loyalty. Not much difference in price from one brand to another, in an apples to apples comparison, either. Better to concentrate on fit and the relation to the selling price of the equipment offered.
 

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Personally, I find Specialized and Giant to be the best bang for the buck at that price point. The bigger manufacturers make a lot of their own components (giant for instance their own bars, tires, wheels, fork, frame, etc.) and source the rest in HUGE quantities, returning the best value, dollar for dollar. But everyone has their own opinion, of course.

I'm presently going through the same "debate" with my girlfriend. She wants a hobby we could both do together in the summer, yet she doesn't have a passion for cycling. Sooo, I don't know if we should go out and drop $2k+ in the hopes cycling will catch on, or if we should keep it sub $1k and upgrade in the future, if the need arises.

To add a new question to the thread, to those who ride with their wives/girlfriends, without being sexist persay, were they able to build their stamina to a reasonable point in a reasonable amount of time? My girlfriend destroys me on the ski slopes (her technique is immaculate), yet her cardio is next to nil. Frankly, I'm not really interested in cruising at 5mph on a gravel path next to the water with picnic baskets and baggy jerseys... Obviously, many women are amazing cyclists who could leave me in the dust, yet I'm talking about someone who's already in shape, yet just doesn't get the heart pumping too often.
 

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I'm presently going through the same "debate" with my girlfriend. She wants a hobby we could both do together in the summer, yet she doesn't have a passion for cycling. Sooo, I don't know if we should go out and drop $2k+ in the hopes cycling will catch on, or if we should keep it sub $1k and upgrade in the future, if the need arises.

To add a new question to the thread, to those who ride with their wives/girlfriends, without being sexist persay, were they able to build their stamina to a reasonable point in a reasonable amount of time? My girlfriend destroys me on the ski slopes (her technique is immaculate), yet her cardio is next to nil. Frankly, I'm not really interested in cruising at 5mph on a gravel path next to the water with picnic baskets and baggy jerseys... Obviously, many women are amazing cyclists who could leave me in the dust, yet I'm talking about someone who's already in shape, yet just doesn't get the heart pumping too often.
sounds like at least one bike will collect dust very quickly.
 

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If you're comfortable with a rough fitting, online. Neuvation, Bikes Direct, or even a premium outlet like Competitve Cycling (look in the sale section) offer good bikes in your range that offer a lot of bang for the buck. If she's looking for a bike to ride semi-competitively, any current-generation Tiagra/Apex level groupset with a solid set of wheels on a good frame will do.

I will say this- pick one that inspires her to ride. If people (men or women) like the aethetics of the bikes they are riding, they are more likely to believe in their abilities and therefore are more likely to ride. Never underestimate the power of bling.
 

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To add a new question to the thread, to those who ride with their wives/girlfriends, without being sexist persay, were they able to build their stamina to a reasonable point in a reasonable amount of time? My girlfriend destroys me on the ski slopes (her technique is immaculate), yet her cardio is next to nil. Frankly, I'm not really interested in cruising at 5mph on a gravel path next to the water with picnic baskets and baggy jerseys... Obviously, many women are amazing cyclists who could leave me in the dust, yet I'm talking about someone who's already in shape, yet just doesn't get the heart pumping too often.
Not to hijack from the OP, but I figured I would comment on this. It is not really sexist, it is an issue with one person at a different skill/fitness level than the other. I have gone through a similar concern as you with my wife regarding running (and biking a bit also, but not like running). She took up running after I was already running 8-10 mile sessions before work. She wanted my input on technique, motivation, company, safety (running while dark even in a safe town is still concerning). Obviously I would not have the same pace or distance with her I was used to. Since I know my pace pretty well, I would tell her how far I was going and set off while she was getting up and getting ready. Then she would meet me and we do a run/walk she was capable of after my full workout was over. It was a nice cool-down for me and she was happy. Your GF may never get to the same level as you... how long did it take you to get there? But this way you can still enjoy time together while you get your "real" rides in.

As for the OP, it is impossible to tell what she needs. There is nothing wrong with an inexpensive bike. It will work just fine, and anything beyond the base level is just user preference. There is significant returns in $ from your bottom line Walmart bike up through the low to mid level entry bikes. Your price point of $1,500 is probably about right for diminishing returns on investment. I spent $1,200 OTD on my Specialized Allez Apex and am very happy. Your partner may not care for anything above Sora, and spending more is just for you. But then again she may grow refined tastes and that not work out. But think of it this way, you will lose a lot less money if you buy less bike up front, then sell it and upgrade vs. buying more bike up front and it going to waste.
 

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You can definitely find a new bike between $1100-$1300 w/Tiagra or Apex. You don't need to go carbon. Trek/Specialized/Giant/Scott/Cannondale all have bikes in this range. Also, check you LBS for 2012 closeouts, you can get a last years model discounted $200+. I know I just upgraded to a Cannondale Carbon Synapse and saved $450 by getting a 2012 model. Also when you buy from a bike shop, you get to know the people there and build a bond with them. They will properly fit you to the bike and will be there to meet your needs. If you say that you have that size of a budget, my vote is to buy new. I know I saw a Cannondale CAADX 5 with full 105's for $1150 just this past week. The deals are out there, just take the time and find the bike that will fit her the best.
 

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You say she does not even own a bike. So she sounds like a beginner. How do you even know if she likes to bike?
You need to start small. Just a Costco or Wally World bike will do for now. We all started on junk bikes and if we liked biking we didn't quit.
If I was just starting biking and had the great bike that I have now it would not have made any difference. I loved biking back then and I knew I had a crap bike but I went anyway just for the fun of it.
If you have lots of money none of the above advice will matter.
Just go into a bike shop and get what looks cool and make her happy.
That is how most things are done anyway.
 

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If you as a man (BF, DH etc) own and control the pastime, chances are the other half won't embrace it unless she takes control. down to the purchase. She has to want to buy a bike though. My DH pisses me off because he thinks road biking is lame (he MTBs, not my scene LOL), most of my female friends whose husbands ride don't really ride, they have great bikes that the DHs bought, they have $$ shoes and jackets and ****, but they don't own the activity.
My first bike was from bikes direct, well under $1500 105s and a bit of carbon. They have some great entry level that are even pretty light, but when I started riding I was using my 25 yr old mountain bike on the roads (I am old as dirt hough). I ride for exercise, not strava. Men and women are different in their motivation, women are plenty competitive, but maybe they don't want to compete with the man they sleep with every night, it gets old.
 

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$1500 can buy a fairly nice bike especially from Bikes Direct. Heck if you know she'll ride the bike you can spend an additional $195 and you can get a Titanium road bike with Sram Heat components from Bikes Direct; or at the same place another Titanium bike equipped with Sram Apex for just $1495.
 

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My wife's 505/130 showing athletic interest in cycling yet has no road bike. What's the point of diminishing returns for a new rider purchase with competitive spirit. I'm ball parking $1500.00 plus pedals shoes gear. Looking for the most product until ridden miles confirms riding is a hobby not theory, who gets the business. Recommendations appreciared.

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imo, and entry level 10-speed drivetrain... would be my minimum. That means Tiagra 4600
Specialized Bicycle Components

Forget used, craiglist, etc... a poorly fitted bike will be a waste of money as your wife will not be liking the ride...

Shop knowledgeable LBS to get a frame suited he her frame, and get fitted.

For pedals... I guess it's going to be a choice between MTB pedals or Road pedals.
 

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Spend around $2,000.00 and find her a 2012 bike that the LBS will significantly discount from around $3,000.00. This will cost you less in the long run because a $3,000.00 bike that you get for $2,000.00 will not need as much upgrading. If your wife is competative she will end up wanting the best, so get it while it is cheap instead of aftermarket; your wallet will thank you.
 
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