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Hey guys, newbie here and first post!

A little background info before I ask my question.

So about a month ago, I was shopping around for a bike. I was looking for something to help me get in shape. Anyway, I knew nothing about cycling and I asked a friend for some help. He advised me on buying a mountain bike, as it would be more "versatile". After riding 4-5 times a week - on the road, for a month... I figured out that I would really never ride on mountain biking trails. So now I am stuck with a 2008 cannondale f5 mtb. I am really enjoying riding but its killing me knowing I bought the wrong type of bike. I set a goal for myself to ride this bike for the rest of the year (shouldnt be a problem riding year round, living in Los Angeles) and save 50 cents for every mile I ride and lose 50 lbs (I am 250 right now) and then purchase a decent road bike by the end of the year.

Ok, to my question: What can I do to prepare for riding a road bike on my mountain bike? Is there anything? What else can I do to make the mountain bike more road like? I already put some 1.6 slicks on it, I have clipless pedals, and a nice saddle.

Any advice or tips would be great, thanks in advanced!!!
 

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ride, ride & ride some more. Then when you ready, take it back to the LBS where you bought it and trade it in on a road bike.
 

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If you want to feel faster you can get some slicks. You will also have better traction without the knobs.

If you continue riding the mountain bike you'll feel like you're flying on the road bike!
 

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clip pedals and slicks. make sure that you get the bike fitted. mtb and road fit differently, but at least get your new mtb setup properly. then just ride the heck out of it. you'll be fine, and you can enjoy the trails while you are at.
 

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Do you have bar ends on the bike yet. Those plus a slightly narrower handlebar (a hacksaw will do the job just fine) will cut down the wind resistance.

I see you have already gone clipless (good deal) but you might find more of the "Road" feel if you went to even narrower tires than those 1.6s you are running now.

Still, the main deal is that you are out there riding and getting stronger. If you ever do make the switch to a full on road bike you are going to be in much better shape and have a lot more skills than you did when you first started riding. Hence you are likely to enjoy that road bike even more!
 

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Sounds like you took care of the big things....tires and pedals. That is about the most you are going to be able to do mountain bike to get ready for a road bike.

Don't worry about mountain bike purchase too much as long as you are riding that is the most important. Had one guy that started on a mountain bike and he got to the point that he was beating some of the guys on road bikes. Now he is on a road bike and is whipping everyone's butt....
 

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You also add road bars and shifters. I had a Cdale hardtail several years ago that had been converted to a commuter with slicks and road bars. That was a great bike! With the front shock locked out, it didn't give up much to a road bike, and I could still throw some knobbies on it and do some trail riding. I'm not sure about using disc brakes with road brake levers, I think you'll be fine if they are mechanical discs though. You'll spend a few bucks on the upgrade, which could be put towards a road bike, but it is another option to consider.
 

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What they said but when you buy a road bike, keep 'em both. Off road can be fun as well and those skinny tires don't work all that well on a trail.
 

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1) Find a mountain bike trail!!!

2) Just ride the bike. Get some slicks and enjoy the bike for a while before getting a road bike.

3) Don't sell the mountain bike, you may eventually want to ride trails.

4) If you want a road bike, and don't want to spend a ton of money, go to the pawn shops and search Craig's List. You can often find an old raleigh or Trek with downtube shifters for less than $100. Take it to the bike shop and get the tires and chain replaced, get a tuneup, then ride the roads for a while. Getting a road bike doesn't mean you have to drop $1500+ into it. People rode nothing but downtube shifter for many years!

My first road bike was an old (1970s) Raleigh lugged steel bike, probably two sizes too small for me, but with a long stem and seat-tube I made it work. I rode two metric centuries on that bike and it helped me get into shape. I kind of wish I still had that old bike. I paid $50 for it.

Todd
 

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1.) Keep the bike. You never get back what you put into a bike.
2.) MTBing rules. It is a great way to get off the road and do some pounding!
3.) Slicks, narrower bars and bar ends will really transform that bike. For $60.00 you can totally change that bike.
4.) Start saving up and eventually get a road bike (a Synapse would go well with that F5). Then you'll have two bikes and will be able to do whatever riding you choose to do.

Overall: Enjoy!
 

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How much do you want to spend?

For me, I know there is always something else I can spend my money on. I converted a mtn bike to be as close to a road bike as possible. From the drop bars, no suspension to changing all the gearing. This was really just a project for me to play with and I was willing to spend the money on it. But if you don’t want to spend any more money then the clipless pedals and the slicks are the best start. As mentioned before, think about getting narrower tires (1 or 1.25). How is your gearing? If you are spinning out, you can change your cassette for higher gears.
I would also consider keeping the mtn bike. You may decide to try mtn biking, but this bike could be a good commuter bike once you get your road bike.
 

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Ditto

bauerb said:
clip pedals and slicks. make sure that you get the bike fitted. mtb and road fit differently, but at least get your new mtb setup properly. then just ride the heck out of it. you'll be fine, and you can enjoy the trails while you are at.

Get some slick tires and clipless pedals. I have been passed by mountain bikers while climbing. Diff is with descending because of aerodynamics. Later on you can buy a road bike and you can do both.
 

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Keep the bike.
Once you get into shape you will love chasing down the roadies.
The look you get from them as you pass by is worth the effort.
 

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You made a minor mistake at worst, but probably not a mistake at all since the bike has gotten you hooked, started you on the way to better health and fitness and is fun.

Put away $.50 for every mile you ride and $20 for every pound you lose and buy yourself a nice bike when you reach your goals. I did it the other way (bought the bike first). First year it inspired me to ride enough in my 20 week season to make it cost about $.75 per mile for the bike. The next year, I rewarded my 10 pound weight loss with a new set of decent wheels. (I was 165 and hadn't weighed 155 in 25 years, so the 10 lbs was a good goal).

Putting on 1.2 or 1.4 inch smooth tires, clipless pedals and shoes, bar ends and getting the bike fitted for more road-ish than MTB-ish will do you fine until you get the roadie.

This year, I'm just ridin'
 

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Change your gears. Replace your cassette with something between 12-23 to 12-27 cassette. Most MTBs come with 11-34. You can also try to find bigger rings for the cranset. You may need new chain due to new gears. This setup would give you more road gears and speed since you probably have 175 cranks on the MTB. You should be fine on hills since you still have a triple cranset.

I think continental sells 26x1.0 slicks. Nashbar used to sell 26x1.1 slicks that go up to 100psi. Look at their site to see if they still sell it. I setup my wife's bike with a 2nd wheelset just like this and she really enjoyed it on the road.
 

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Buying the MTB is not a problem, it is an alternative. It is nice to get out on a MTB every now and then. MTB'in will give you explosive power and greatly improve your bike handling skills and balance. Road biking will give you sustained endurance. The two types of biking are complimentary, and doing both will make you a stronger rider overall.

I think that I read on here one time that the proper number of bikes to own is n+1 where n= the current number of bikes that you own.
 
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