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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey All,

Im brand new to road bikes but not to bikes in general. Ive been riding MTB's for about 8 years and racing for the last 3. I'm a pretty good wrench, and after riding my buddy's Trek 5200, im hooked!

Ive been reading everything i could possibly read over the last 3 weeks about what bike to buy, what to look for, whether to go used or not, etc. I'm just a little curious on what you all would recommend for a bike that i can grow with for a little while. As the title says, i have a $1000 budget, but theres a catch: i can get 30% off Specialized.

I have a couple great shops around here that carry giant, spec, trek, and Jamis. So far ive been looking at the Giant OCR's, the Spec Allez, Trek 1200/1500, and the Jamis Ventura Comp.

I guess what im looking for is opinions on any of these, and wondering if since im just starting out as a rodie, is it worth it for me to get something like the basic Allez or OCR3, or to jump up to the likes of the OCR1/1500/Allez Elite?

Any thoughts are greatly appreciated!
 

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You're Not the Boss of Me
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I think if it suits one's budget, it is always worth it to start out with a little "more" bike.

Lots of folks think they should start cheap and then "upgrade" if they enjoy the sport. Problem is, that's a really financially inefficient way to do it, and the nicer your equipment the more you're likely to take to it (even if it is just a placebo effect).

WIth that kind of buying power, I'd get the best thing my budget allows. You could ride an Allez Elite, for example, for thousands and thousands of happy miles without feeling like you needed to go chase down more bells and whistles.
 

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I dunno... the <$1500 Specialized selection is pretty lousy. You'd almost be better off with a Giant OCR1, without the discount!

If you can get a little more money look at the Specialized Roubaix Comp ($1540 after your discount) or at least the Roubaix Elite ($1260 after discount). They are much nicer bikes than the $1000 Specialized bikes.
 

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Test ride, test ride, then test ride....

I hate to sound like so many others on this board, but it is all about fit..

I raise this more so because I bought a specialized allez sport as my first road bike, and just had to sell it and get a new bike, because I just could never get comfortable....
Not really the bikes fault, I am tall and I bought literally the only bike I test road in my size...I test road other bikes, but always in sizes too small for me.

in hindsite I wish I had gotten a Trek 1000, 1200 or 1500....they seem like good general bikes. I just don't fit well with the compact frames...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
rob999 said:
I hate to sound like so many others on this board, but it is all about fit..

I raise this more so because I bought a specialized allez sport as my first road bike, and just had to sell it and get a new bike, because I just could never get comfortable....
Not really the bikes fault, I am tall and I bought literally the only bike I test road in my size...I test road other bikes, but always in sizes too small for me.

in hindsite I wish I had gotten a Trek 1000, 1200 or 1500....they seem like good general bikes. I just don't fit well with the compact frames...

I doubt the compact frames would bug me much, as im 5'9 160lbs. The only one ive ridden so far is the Jamis, which felt nice (although im a Jamis lover). Ill have a chance to ride the other soon i hope. I do know that i could never get really comfortable on Trek MTB's, but hopefully the rode bikes are a little different.

All discounts aside, give me your choices for a bike under $1300

And Thanks to all who have posted! Keep em Comin!!
 

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I recommended a 2006 Schwinn Fastback Comp for my sister at about that price... you can get them online for around $900. Leaves money to get clothes and pedals (probikekit.com has Shimano 105 pedals for like $35, last i checked). 20spd, compact crank, pretty decent part kit...

Bike:
http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/bikes_detail.php?id=603

Pedals:
http://www.probikekit.com/display.php?code=M1032

If you're looking at Specialized, Trek, etc for your first bike, I'd strongly recommend the Trek Pilot or Specialized Roubaix series over the numbered-Trek models or the Allex or Tarmac models. At least, that's what I'd try first... most first-timers are going to find that style of bike to be more comfortable, and its still a fast sporty bike. The Schwinn I mentioned has geometry like the Pilot or Roubaix.
 

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Scary Teddy Bear
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Depends

MarvinK said:
I recommended a 2006 Schwinn Fastback Comp for my sister at about that price... you can get them online for around $900. Leaves money to get clothes and pedals (probikekit.com has Shimano 105 pedals for like $35, last i checked). 20spd, compact crank, pretty decent part kit...

Bike:
http://www.schwinnbike.com/products/bikes_detail.php?id=603

Pedals:
http://www.probikekit.com/display.php?code=M1032

If you're looking at Specialized, Trek, etc for your first bike, I'd strongly recommend the Trek Pilot or Specialized Roubaix series over the numbered-Trek models or the Allex or Tarmac models. At least, that's what I'd try first... most first-timers are going to find that style of bike to be more comfortable, and its still a fast sporty bike. The Schwinn I mentioned has geometry like the Pilot or Roubaix.

on the rider, his flexibility, goals, etc. etc. I started riding again last year and bought my first road bike, a Specialized Allez. I did so, because I knew that eventually I wanted to do some racing, and the Allez seemed to be a bit more aggressive than the Trek models. I rode both, researched and then made a decision. I LOVE my Allez, and have put on almost 1600 miles since Jan on it. If you are given the chance to get 30% off, even better. BUT, bottom line is, it is YOUR decision, only you can tell which bike is "it". Good Luck....and PS- If you don't use the 30% off, is it transferable...??:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
flexibility

physasst said:
on the rider, his flexibility, goals, etc. etc. I started riding again last year and bought my first road bike, a Specialized Allez. I did so, because I knew that eventually I wanted to do some racing, and the Allez seemed to be a bit more aggressive than the Trek models. I rode both, researched and then made a decision. I LOVE my Allez, and have put on almost 1600 miles since Jan on it. If you are given the chance to get 30% off, even better. BUT, bottom line is, it is YOUR decision, only you can tell which bike is "it". Good Luck....and PS- If you don't use the 30% off, is it transferable...??:D

Has always been a strongpoint of mine. Thats also the benefit of being 21. Physasst really hit the nail on the head. I have love MTBing for years, but i never knew how much until i started racing. It brought me to a whole new level of passion. I feel the same about road riding in that eventually I'd love to start racing. The Trek pilot series just doesnt do it for me really, and there is a big price and spec gap between the 1.2 and 2.1. I would consider the base model Roubaix, but in all honesty, how much better would it be than the Allez Elite?
 

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The Roubaix has a more compact frame resulting in a more upright & comfortable position where the Allez has a more traditional frame with a more race like position so they are aiming for slightly different markets and going from what you have said about the Allez vs. the Trek then I think you would probably like the Allez more than the Roubaix.
 

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Roubaix & Pilot are similar, the Trek 5200 the op rode is similar to the Allez.. all suitable for racing, but the 5200-style Trek or the Allez will be more slanted to that than a century ride with friends. If you like the Allez better than Roubaix/Pilot, you're better off testing a Giant TCR-series, rather than the OCR.
 

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Test ride a half dozen different bikes, visiting several bike shops in your area. Buy the one of these that feels good to you from the shop that treated you well. Then go out and ride your bike a zillion miles. All other advice aside, you're going to be happiest on a bike that feels good to your body. And don't try to find the "best" bike. That's an impossible goal that will drive you crazy. Just find a bike that feels good to ride.

When you find what seems to be the right bike, test ride one size larger and one size smaller to compare the feel.

I'd be surprised if you can't find a Specialized bike that feels good. So I'd be surprised if you would feel the need to pay 30% more for another brand. Have fun looking and don't get paralyzed by the choices. If you spend more than a few days deciding, then you're overthinking it.

After you ride those zillion miles, you'll know so much more than you do today. You'll be such a wise consumer for your second bike.
 

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CarbonFrame
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eBay

I would check ebay. I bought my first bike on eBay. $865.00 with full ultegra. It was well cared for and in great shape. You can save big $$$ on ebay. Just make sure you know exactly what you need (size especially). I have actually purchased 3 different roadies on eBay. Also research the seller thoroughly prior to bidding. Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Final Decision Time...

CarbonFrame said:
I would check ebay. I bought my first bike on eBay. $865.00 with full ultegra. It was well cared for and in great shape. You can save big $$$ on ebay. Just make sure you know exactly what you need (size especially). I have actually purchased 3 different roadies on eBay. Also research the seller thoroughly prior to bidding. Good Luck!

Thanks for the advice. Im actually quite the Ebay fiend. Ive done 3-4 MTB deals on Ebay, both buying and selling.

Basically what ive come down to is this: Over the last week, ive test ridden a bunch of bikes, and have come down to 3:
Spec Allez Elite Triple $1200
Trek 1500 $1050
04 Giant OCR Elite (used) $900

All 3 felt and rode great. I could definately tell the geometry diff. between the Spec/Trek and the OCR, but neither one would give me any grief. The Trek and Spec are new, and the Giant is as close to new as you can get. The parts spec on the Giant is the best, followed by the Trek And then the Spec. What do you all think? For me, i just find it hard to pass up the OCR...
 

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i bought my first one on ebay 2 months ago - a 2000 cannondale saeco series - dura ace gruppo , and it includes a new spare set of neuvations M28 wheelset . i shelled about $900 including shipping.

i pretty much know my size as i always go to a LBS here with cannondale bikes .
 

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allez elite

i went with my girlfriend, now fiance, to get her first road bike. you're definitely a notch up in terms of rider to her (she mtn biked 1-2years and wanted to join me and our friends road riding). having raced mtn bike and i'm sure wanting to do more serious road riding, i would get shimano 105 level components and up.

the allez elite is a great bike for around $1000. she got her's at supergo (now performance) in santa monica for that much -- they offered a discount on accessories, so i advised her to get the shoes, helmet, seat bag, etc. she's put in bunch of centuries now and it's a great little bike. very stiff bb, light. the cheap brakes i replaced with 105 when the pads went south -- would've just replaced the pads but there was rust developing on the screws.

if you know what size and brands fit you well, definitely ebay's a great source. all my bikes have been used, either hand me downs from friends (hed vo4 tt bike) or ebay (jamis dragon 853 hard tail, gunnar 853 roadie, merlin titanium agelis, and soon burley tosa alum tandem).

john
 
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