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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Could someone please help me? I am tired of trying to decide on which bikes to even test ride. I am new to cycling and want something to ride for excercise. I'll ride some short fast rides during the week and some longer rides on the weekend. The bikes I'm looking at are; Felt F80(F75 if i get it cheap enough),Trek 1500 or Pilot 1.2,Cannondale R700, Specialized Allez Elite, Giant OCR1(TCR2 if i get a good deal),Scott S30.

I know you guys are tired of newbies asking this but I have about had it! Please help me out.
 

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I have a Giant OCR 3, which has given me many trouble free miles. Just upgraded to a TCR 2, love it. The difference is noticeable, OCR is a little slower, TCR is not as "comfy" but is much more aggressive. Haven't had any problems with either, and would strongly reccommend Giant as they make great bikes for a good price.
 

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I just bought a CAAD8 a few months ago (Cannondale R1000). Test ride it, see if you like it. If you buy a Giant and are more than 160lbs, I would upgrade the brakes. The bikes you listed are VERY different. For instance, a Pilot is going to be an upright ride, where the TCR and R700+ (CAAD8) are race frames. If you're just going to be on short rides (how short?) and longer rides on weekends, these will be fine unless you have back problems. Personally, I have no trouble even doing 100+ miles on my CAAD8 frame, but not everyone is as flexible as I am.
 

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If you are "new to cycling", why don't you buy a $300 cross bike at your LBS, to find out if you soon say...."I'm sick of it already!".... After a month or two on a cross bike, you should be able to tell what you really need in a bike, and how things need to be changed. It's always better to be "mis-fit" on a $300 bike, than a $3000 bike.
 

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06 Giant Ocr2

I ride an 06 Giant OCR2. While I'm not an expert by any stretch of the imagination,having recently returned to cycling after a 10 year hiatus, I would say price to value was the biggest attraction for me. For $850.00 you get Shimano 105 components, Tiagra shifters, a carbon fork and an excellent triple Tru-Vativ crankset that is helping me on the hills. As I said earlier, I'm pretty much a novice too but I've got over 500mi on her already, am still learning and havn't anything happen that would cause me not to give this bike an A+ rating. Unless of course I upgrade next year:D Hope this helps you out a bit:thumbsup:
 

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Start at the bottom (price-wise) and work your way up. Go to a local shop and explain what you are planning on doing and ask for their opinion. If you're looking for exercise mainly, then you want a comfortable bike that will last, and give a soft,smooth ride. The upgraded components are nice if you can get them for no extra cost, but the money you save can be spent on pedals, shoes, and shorts... all stuff that doesn't come with the bike.
 

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I'd buy the Felt, but for the wrong reason.

Unless one of the others was orange, which of course supersedes all other qualities, I'd go for the Felt just because you don't see them six times on the way to Starbuck's. I live near the turnaround point of a popular training loop from Reno, and when I work in my yard on a weekend, I get dizzy counting the Treks and Giants.
Slightly more seriously, they're all likely to be decent bikes. I'd base my selection on fit, feel and the reputation of the shop, rather than trying to nitpick the bikes to death. Whatever you buy, you'll have a wave of buyer's remorse for a few days, it will pass and you'll like the bike after that.
 

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Cory said:
Unless one of the others was orange, which of course supersedes all other qualities, I'd go for the Felt just because you don't see them six times on the way to Starbuck's. I live near the turnaround point of a popular training loop from Reno, and when I work in my yard on a weekend, I get dizzy counting the Treks and Giants.
Slightly more seriously, they're all likely to be decent bikes. I'd base my selection on fit, feel and the reputation of the shop, rather than trying to nitpick the bikes to death. Whatever you buy, you'll have a wave of buyer's remorse for a few days, it will pass and you'll like the bike after that.
That's why I like my Specialized Allez Sport. On our group rides you don't see any Specialized bikes. All Giants and Treks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Thanks for all of your input. You all make really valid points. Today I road a Felt F65(closest thing they had to the F75), the Scott S30, a Cannondale R700 and a Specialized Allez sport (I'll go back later to ride the Elite I am looking at) and a Giant TCR2.

First was the Scott- felt fine to me. no big deal.
Second, I rode the Felt- same thing, no big difference.
Then I road the Giant- It felt about the same as the others but much more harsh. Like it had a lot more air in the tires. But other than that, about the same as the others.
Then came the Cannondale! For some reason that one just felt better all around! It went from last on my list to first in one short ride.
The last one I rode was the Specialized Allez Sport (the Elite was not there yet) and it felt almost as good as the Cannondale with the CAAD8 frame. I'll need to see if the Elite feels any different.

It sort of sucks because I found an '05 TCR2 for about half the price of a new one an hour from my house!

BTW, how do you guys ride for that long!!? My butt hurts after just a couple of minutes.
 

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that's something they didn't tell you..

hornmono said:
Thanks for all of your imput. You all make really valid points. Today I road a Felt F65(closest thing they had to the F75), the Scott S30, a Cannondale R700 and a Specialized Allez sport (I'll go back later to ride the Elite I am looking at) and a Giant TCR2.

First was the Scott- felt fine to me. no big deal.
Second, I rode the Felt- same thing, no big difference.
Then I road the Giant- It felt about the same as the others but much more harsh. Like it had a lot more air in the tires. But other than that, about the same as the others.
Then came the Cannondale! For some reason that one just felt better all around! It went from last on my list to first in one short ride.
The last one I rode was the Specialized Allez Sport (the Elite was not there yet) and it felt almost as good as the Cannondale with the CAAD8 frame. I'll need to see if the Elite feels any different.

It sort of sucks because I found an '05 TCR2 for about half the price of a new one an our from my house!

BTW, how do you guys ride for that long!!? My butt hurts after just a couple of minutes.
honestly, plan on buying a new seat almost immediately. stock seats are typically crap...I have no idea whos butt they were made to fit, but I have rarely found a stock bike with one that does. ride the stock seat for as long as you can stand, try to determine where it hurts and try to pick a new saddle with a shape that may eliminate that...once you found that saddle, buy 10 of them. good shops will let you "borrow" or exchange seats until your preference is met..inevitably the bike fit will change with almost every saddle you try...don't get discouraged though, once you're dialed in, you're good forever. its a process we all go through...
 

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One possible thing to check...

My only experience with Cannondale is my mountain bike, but one thing that occurred to me from your description of your test rides is that the tires may be responsible for a lot of the difference you feel. People complain/comment on the "stiff" or even "punishing" ride of alum frames. I don't notice it on the MB because I run big soft tires and I weigh 240, but it might be worth looking at the tire sizes and inflation pressures on the different bikes. Going from, say, a 23mm tire at 115 psi to a 28 at 95 can really change the feel of a frame..
 

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I was in your same position about a few months ago. I test rode the F80 and the Giant ocr 1, but neither one of them felt any special to me. Then I tried the 1500 and the 1200 from Trek and I was very pleased with both of them. I noticed they felt alot smoother to ride than the f80 and the ocr. I am about to get a 1500 in just a few days, but that is just my opinion. It really comes down to what fits right and feels the best. Good luck, anyone of those bikes will work great.
 

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hornmono said:
BTW, how do you guys ride for that long!!? My butt hurts after just a couple of minutes.
First, you need a good saddle. Nobody can say which saddle is best, because every butt is different. What's best is what is most comfortable for you. Second, it takes a while to break a good saddle (as well as your rear end) in. It won't feel as good on mile 3 as it will on mile 300.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The treks were on my list but I didn't ride any. I had to stop somewhere! I think I have got it down to two, the Cannondale R700 and the Specialized Allez Elite. They both felt better than all of the others I rode. Now all I need to do is see which one I can find the best deal on. Any ideas? My lbs says that they will match any price plus 10% on the Allez. I would love to find someplace that sells them for really cheap!

And about the seat issue, my azz still hurts!
 

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Good for

hornmono said:
The treks were on my list but I didn't ride any. I had to stop somewhere! I think I have got it down to two, the Cannondale R700 and the Specialized Allez Elite. They both felt better than all of the others I rode. Now all I need to do is see which one I can find the best deal on. Any ideas? My lbs says that they will match any price plus 10% on the Allez. I would love to find someplace that sells them for really cheap!

And about the seat issue, my azz still hurts!

you, nail it down to what tickles your fancy...I wish I could day it's more complicated than that, and eventually it will be, but for a beginner, that's about all there is to it. Buy what you feel is comfortable and what you like to look at...bling factor is not to be ignored either. If you don't like how it looks, you probably won't ride it as much.:thumbsup: As far as the seat, I still have my stock seat on my Allez after a year...it hurt for awhile at first, but I think just about every seat will at first until you get used to them. Then you can tell some differences. Good Luck with your choice.:D
 
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