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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking to get my first Road Bike for recreational use. I'm a fairly large guy 6'3 250 lbs. What should be my concerns with getting my first Road bike.

There are two bike shops in my neighborhood. One carries mostly Trek. The other carries mostly Giant.

My 2 options are:

Trek 1.5. ($1.000)

Giant ocr2 ($850)

Thanks
 

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Adventure Seeker
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Get that one, yes - that one right there.
Ok, seriously. Welcome to the forums. If you read through here, you'll find out the best one is what feels best to you. At your weight, I'd lean more toward the Giant, as it'll come with slightly stronger wheels. However, for about $230, you can get some open pro/ultegra wheels which will last a very long time. Get the one that feels better and has the best components.
 

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eRacer
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Welcome to the RBR Forums.
Lots of nice folks here to help you out.
I have had 2 Treks with mid-range Shimano components and I was very happy with them.
Probably good to go with Local Bike Shop (LBS) recommendations in your price range, and then you have someone to turn to for help with problems and upgrading in the future.
Again Welcome!
John
 

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I agree with above, go give them test rides and see which one fits your geometry better. Most bikes will be adjustable to fit you, but inherent design can fit differently. Go for long test rides.

I personally got the OCR 2 as my first bike, it is such a great pricepoint, and it was what I needed at the time. Both bikes have similar components (which are fine for novices/amateurs), 9 speed Tiagra/Sora mix, which have a lot of plastic parts. Entry level serious riders will be better suited with Shimano 105/Sram Rival/Campagnolo Veloce level, but as I mentioned, Tiagra/Sora 9 should be fine. I still have my OCR2, but I built it up with Campy Veloce as my extra bike. Its a great frame, and I road it on a cross country 3000 mile trip. The wheels held up ok, but they definitely need maintenance (by your local bike shop) to remain true. I personally have never ridden the Trek 1.5, so I can't compare, so keep that in mind.

Remember that costs add up quickly. The trek does not come with any type of clip in pedal, which I highly recommend if you really want to maximize your performance on any bike. The Giant does, although it is not a road specific pedal, it will suffice for entry level. Budget for shoes and clothing too.

If you end up getting the Giant, and you have money left over after the shoes and what not, I will also recommend a wheel upgrade. I have heard great things about the open pro wheels, but I have personal experience with Mavic Aksiums, which new have an MSRP of $260, but can be found for closer to $200 or less online. I have put 2000 miles on them, and they have stayed straight and never needed to be trued. You need a bomb proof wheel for your weight.

See if your bike shop will give you the wheel upgrade at or a little above cost (the OCR line is phased out, and being replaced by the new Defy line, so they must be on closeout). You might be able to get the Giant for under $1000 with a good wheel upgrade.

Finally, ask about warranty and maintenance. Many bike shops will offer free adjustments for life if you buy it from them. Some will throw in a free major tune up (perfect for the following year, and can usually cost $50-70). Also, many will work with you to fit and adjust the bike for your body and riding style. Some professional fit systems can charge you upwards of $200 for an hour or two hour long fitting. I doubt they would throw that in for free, but GOOD bike shops should take the time, sometimes 15 minutes, sometimes 60 minutes to get a good fit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the help. I think I'm going to go with the Giant.

It is true that Giant makes low level Trek parts?
 

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Does that have any impact on which bike you buy, or are you just curious?
 

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Trek is Bontrager. They make their own parts, but use other brands of components on their bicycles.

Test ride a few bicycles while you make up your mind. And having an appearance you like could & should influence your decision. The best bicycle is the one you like the best and are more likely to ride often.
 

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In my opinion, I'd add another 300 bucks on get a bike with all Shimano 105 components. Especially if you have any idea that you'll be sticking with road biking.

Just my .02. Of those two I'd go for the Trek.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Infini said:
Does that have any impact on which bike you buy, or are you just curious?
I'm just curious if I spend more money and get the Trek. Would it be the same bike as the Giant with just different parts.
 

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fogofwar said:
I'm just curious if I spend more money and get the Trek. Would it be the same bike as the Giant with just different parts.
I'm guessing you're asking this because you heard that Giant makes bikes for several companies. While this is true, the bikes aren't just rebadged versions of Giants. Rather, they are manufactured to specifications that are, for the most part, unique to that brand.

There's one important aspect to bike purchases that has gone almost unmentioned here, and that is fit. It's far more important to buy based on fit as the priority than it is to base a purchase on some component (that will wear and be replaced in due time anyway). So, choose the LBS that focuses on fit and all else will fall into place. Also, don't focus on upgrading before you even have a bike.

Yes, at your weight wear and tear on a wheelset will be greater than if you were a lightweight, but you'll still get some service out of the OEM's before they need replacing. And when that times does come, I agree with a previous poster that mentioned the OpenPro's w/ Ultegra hubs. Near bulletproof.
 

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At 250lbs I'd change the wheels at the outset. You'll get the best price by selling the new ones new and unridden. If money is tight the Giant will still net out at under a $1000.
Other wheel options are CXP33's and 36 spokes I have both and all are good for the bigger rider.
 

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PJ352 said:
There's one important aspect to bike purchases that has gone almost unmentioned here, and that is fit. It's far more important to buy based on fit as the priority than it is to base a purchase on some component (that will wear and be replaced in due time anyway). So, choose the LBS that focuses on fit and all else will fall into place. Also, don't focus on upgrading before you even have a bike.

Yes, at your weight wear and tear on a wheelset will be greater than if you were a lightweight, but you'll still get some service out of the OEM's before they need replacing. And when that times does come, I agree with a previous poster that mentioned the OpenPro's w/ Ultegra hubs. Near bulletproof.
I'm going to second both of these points here. Choose based upon the service/fit the LBS will provide you. Trust me on this, its worth paying more now if that LBS actually provides a fitting and will work with you to get the bike fitting properly. I shopped my first bike based upon price and I've regretted it many many times.

Also I let the same shop convince me that 20 spoke rear, 16 spoke front wheels would be sufficient for me. They aren't. If either of these bikes comes with low spoke count wheels (less than 32 spokes is low for a 250 lb rider.) ask the LBS if they'll give you a discount or swap wheels for you. This will give you a good idea as to how reasonable the LBS is being with you and how much they care about how well the bike fits the riders's needs.

BTW, I'm 6'2" and 258 so I know what you're talking about here.

Eric
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
thanks for all the help.
i didn't think my size would merit me getting more spokes. why would it not be good if i didn't have more spokes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Based on the picture it looks like the Giant bike has 32 spokes and the Trek bike has 26 spokes.


However, the Giant only comes in XL. But, the Trek comes in more specific sizes.
 

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fogofwar said:
thanks for all the help.
i didn't think my size would merit me getting more spokes. why would it not be good if i didn't have more spokes.
To put it simply.... low spoke count + Broken spoke(s) = unusable wheel = thumbing it home. Don't ask me how I know. :)

As for the specific sizes of Trek vs. XL of Giant, that only really matters if your LBS doesn't know how to fit you properly on what they offer. If the Giant will require super long stem or extra tall seatpost maybe that's a problem, but in general what they call the size doesn't matter if it fits you properly. :)

The Trek is a 24 rear, 20 front although you'll notice they don't mention that in the specifications. From a wheel perspective you'll be much happier on the Giant. I wouldn't trust those Bontrager wheels under me at my weight.

Ask if you can get a credit to sell the Trek wheels back to the LBS and then go buy these instead..

http://www.bicyclewheelwarehouse.com/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=38

Good luck.

Eric
 

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I couldn't agree more with ECF. Whichever bike you choose my suggestion is to try very hard to get the bike shop to take off the original wheels and give you credit toward another set. Even custom wheels aren't that costly. If you can use the hubs that came on the bike, ask them to install Velocity Deep V rims. They're strong enough to use as a spare on a logging truck. IMO, even with Mavic Open Pros you'll have a problem, especially being a new rider. DO NOT allow the shop to sell you the idea that the original wheels will be fine, and they're plenty strong enough for you. They're not!
 
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