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Discussion Starter #1
I am a big gut, 280 lbs., 5' 10".

I want to buy a top quality bike for riding 1-20 miles, general exercise, no grass or mountainous terrain. Basically street and gravel paths, bike paths ....

Can any of you guys/gals reccommend a sturdy frame bike and model to consider since I am a larger framed guy. Also, should I buy bigger tires?

I'm willing to spend up to 1,500.00. I was looking at Cannondale Adventure 800 series.
I do not want to purchase average to lower quality bicycles.

Thanks very much.
 

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That bike should be plenty strong enough

Since you are looking at the hybrid or recreational level bikes, most are built pretty sturdy and you won't be looking at flimsy wheels, etc. At this level most are going to be pretty solid. This bike already comes with 38c tires and 32 spoke 3x wheels, so nothing there to upgrade. These will be plenty strong.

Sounds like you are just doing more bike path type riding. If you are thinking of getting into road riding, or riding with a club, Cannondales are also a good bet for road bikes. Nice, strong aluminum frames. The suspension seatpost and springy saddle will be fine for the low miles, but if you are serious about riding these will need to go fast. I remember trying to "go fast" and bouncing up and down on those springs. Thank heavens no one had a video camera.

I am 6'5", 240lbs (but used to be closer to 280) and started riding on a GT bike that was basically what you are looking at with the C'dale you mentioned. Worked great for me until I got the bug many years ago and got into road cycling.

Your local shop will do a good job getting you set up to ride, and will also give you good advice on what will work for you.
 

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Resident Curmudgeon
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There are many bikes that would be appropriate for your use. I second the Cannondale though. They're American made, they're popular, well spec'd, easy to find, and look pretty nice too.
 

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just tossing this out for debate:

would 36 hole wheels be more appropriate for someone that weight?

or do you think 32 are sufficiently strong?

i don't have an opinion as I am not familar with the strength of current rims. all my stuff is older 36 holed rims.
 

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I was 350 plus this time last year. I bought a Trek 7300 and started training rides with the local bike club. I blew spokes so I had a custom wheel built with 36 spokes and a light mountain bike rim. Never another problem and lost well over 100 pounds and still going down. Will stop soon.

I had smooth wheels that held more air put on too. It is a great bike for the road and for the trail. A little heavy. So now I bought a Giant TCRc1, elite wheels and not a problem. 180 miles in the past week. Nearly 400 for the year and no problems at all. Still round and true. Snow back in the forecast but I hope to get 1000 in before the training rides start May 4.

I think trying to buy one bike for the rest of my life would have been unrealistic. Needs and desires change...my ability is way up there from what it was after 3200 miles the first year and a winter at Golds Gym. But the hybrid was perfect for getting started. The road bike is a dream.

Good luck.
 

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Moderatus Puisne
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congratulations on your newfound lightness.

When you consider you've basically taken the weight of another full human being out of you, that takes a lot of work.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Custom 36 spokes?

If you need a 36 spoke bike, are bike shop experts able to perform that upgrade in shop or must they order the item? If so, from whom do they order? Was it from Trek in your case?

So, if I understand, you bought a road and trail bike with bigger, smooth tires to ride on street and gravel. Is that correct? Are they 38c tires then?

I was looking at the Cannondale Adventure 800 but I will also look at the Trek series too. Thanks.
Pete:confused:
 

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You should be able to get a good wheelbuilder that can build you some stronger wheels. I was heavier than you, and I got some wheels built with Velocity rims, 36 spokes in the rear, 32 in the front, both with 3 X. They have lasted over 7000 miles, and are still going strong. Oh yeah, the rear wheel is straight 14 gage spoked, and the front has 14 15 14's. You might want to consider a comfort/touring type of road bike, as you will drop the weight faster than you might expect if my experience holds for you.
 

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Downhill Juggernaut
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Big Bad John said:
You should be able to get a good wheelbuilder that can build you some stronger wheels. I was heavier than you, and I got some wheels built with Velocity rims, 36 spokes in the rear, 32 in the front, both with 3 X. They have lasted over 7000 miles, and are still going strong. Oh yeah, the rear wheel is straight 14 gage spoked, and the front has 14 15 14's. You might want to consider a comfort/touring type of road bike, as you will drop the weight faster than you might expect if my experience holds for you.

It sounds like you have the wheel setup that I have. I started out at 350 plus as well on those exact wheels. I haven't lost 100 yet, but I'm well on my way to my goal of 220 (yeah I have a large frame with massive bone structure- 220 is about as small as I'll be able to go). Haven't popped a spoke and the wheels are as true today as they were 1000+ miles ago. 36 rear and 32 front.

Sure I lust over those flimsy sexy wheels with the minimalist spoke count, but those Velocity Deep V's just keep rolling along.

 

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Great testimonials on losing weight. I will make 220, but will be 35 inch waist there and won't go lower. So I won't be a great climber. I'm 54. I'm lucky to be climbing at all.

The rear wheel I had made was done in-shop. $150 Well worth it.
 

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Lizzie will ride free
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I'd check out a Surly CrossCheck complete bike for just under $1000. Big value. Perhaps call Harris Cycle (they're on the web) and ask for a custom set of wheels with it - if they doubt the stock ones.. They will take care of you. It's the one bike to have if you're having only one.
 

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Downhill Juggernaut
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jplatzner said:
I'd check out a Surly CrossCheck complete bike for just under $1000. Big value. Perhaps call Harris Cycle (they're on the web) and ask for a custom set of wheels with it - if they doubt the stock ones.. They will take care of you. It's the one bike to have if you're having only one.
As someone who commutes daily on a Cross Check, I gotta say... it is hard to go wrong with one. You're only limited by the tires you put on it. Sure you won't be leading the pack with it, but when you reach that point you'll have bought another bike anyway. Plus the slack geometry is much more forgiving with a beginning rider.
 

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walleyeangler said:
I was 350 plus this time last year. I bought a Trek 7300 and started training rides with the local bike club. I blew spokes so I had a custom wheel built with 36 spokes and a light mountain bike rim. Never another problem and lost well over 100 pounds and still going down. Will stop soon.

I had smooth wheels that held more air put on too. It is a great bike for the road and for the trail. A little heavy. So now I bought a Giant TCRc1, elite wheels and not a problem. 180 miles in the past week. Nearly 400 for the year and no problems at all. Still round and true. Snow back in the forecast but I hope to get 1000 in before the training rides start May 4.

I think trying to buy one bike for the rest of my life would have been unrealistic. Needs and desires change...my ability is way up there from what it was after 3200 miles the first year and a winter at Golds Gym. But the hybrid was perfect for getting started. The road bike is a dream.

Good luck.
WTF? you dropped 100lbs in ONE year???!!!? awesome. crazy, but AWESOME. :eek: :cool:
 

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2nd Big Bad John's wheel advice--worked for me

I don't think 240 pounds is going to stress any bike big enough to fit you, except for a few StupidLite frames. As a 230-former-270 pounder myself, though, I can absolutely promise you wheel problems even with stuff the 145-pound guys in the bike shop assure you is PLENTY strong enough. BBJ's wheels are very close to mine, and they've done about 4000 miles (or so; I don't keep close track anymore) with only one minor truing in the rear after I hit a rock.
If you can't get them built locally, Rivendell (www.rivbike.com) has a good wheelbuilder named Rich something (Lesnick??) who worked with me after the OEM wheels on my Atlantis folded. Price was reasonable and the wheels are killer.

Big Bad John said:
You should be able to get a good wheelbuilder that can build you some stronger wheels. I was heavier than you, and I got some wheels built with Velocity rims, 36 spokes in the rear, 32 in the front, both with 3 X. They have lasted over 7000 miles, and are still going strong. Oh yeah, the rear wheel is straight 14 gage spoked, and the front has 14 15 14's. You might want to consider a comfort/touring type of road bike, as you will drop the weight faster than you might expect if my experience holds for you.
 

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Alien Musician
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It's possible. I know three people who have lost 100 pounds in about a years time.

I also agree on the Surly as a good bombproof type frame for a long life
of rides. Get some good wheels and you'll be raring to go.
 

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Yes, more than 100. It wasn't really that tough. 100 to 130 miles a week on the bike after work and on Saturdays and Sundays. I was riding all over the place. Ate high protein, low carbs, lots of vegetables and fruit, yogurt...never felt hungry. I got into it and loved it. Love the fit lifestyle now.

The bike was a hybrid but I'm riding a Giant TCRc1 with Mavic Elites and no problems at all after about 400 miles. I love bikes!

If you are my age, try reading "Younger Next Year" and "Bike to 100." Great information.
 

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aliensporebomb said:
I also agree on the Surly as a good bombproof type frame for a long life of rides.
+1

I have only been riding my Surly for a little over a week, but I totally love it. I am a pretty big guy (at 240#) and my Surly LHT takes very good care of me.
 
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