I am just looking into getting into riding, partially to start commuting, and also for fitness. I haven't ridden in the past 5 years (well less than 100km combined), and have been into a few bike shops asking questions.
From what I have researched I am leaning towards a Avanti Giro 3 for $899 (incl pedals) which uses full Shimano Tiagra componants, which seems to be the best deal that I can find. I want to know if anyone has tried this bike, and any suggestions of other bikes to consider. Not looking at anything over 1k.
A bit of information on the commute,
I live in Belair, and will be commuting to Flinders Uni, and possibly riding down to the city and back on occassion which is one reason I am looking at a road bike as opposed to a commuter.
Any advice would be appreciated.
I have been casually looking at second hand bikes, but haven't really seen much to suit me. I haven't seen the bike workshop though, where is that? I also plan to visit standish to see what they say. I am working at the moment, and also with tax coming back I should have a decent amount to spend, the thing is I need something good quality that suits me as much as possible as I am not going to be likely to afford much after returning to study, i.e. don't want to need a new bike in the next 5 years. This is one of the reasons why I may prefer a new bike, but I am definitely not set in my ways about it.
If you plan on commuting don't use road pedals. at the very most use flat or mountain bike spd pedals and shoes, but yep perhaps consider using flat pedals to begin with.
Not being clipped in makes things a lot easier for beginners, especially while you get used to braking, getting into the correct gears, starting and stopping etc.
Once you get used to riding your new bike, consider getting mountain bike spd's
If i was living where you are i'd probably get a cyclocross bike, theres so many more options if you include dirt roads.
I also like racks, carrying bags is often overrated. Having a rack means your bike won't be as sleek, but its something you appreciate when carrying something heavy after making an impulse buy.
any reason for mountain bike spd pedals and shoes as opposed to road pedals? I understand for starting that it would be easier to go with flat pedals.
I have no interest at this stage in anything off road or on dirt roads.
I have just started to look at CX bikes, but they don't seem to be as cost competitive with the same level of components as the Avanti bike I looked at. that is the only thing (aside from looks) that are turning me a little away from them. I still have lots of looking to do though
MTB shoes have metal recessed cleats, and generally have rubber soles which are a lot better for walking.
Road shoes have exposed cleats that are generally made of plastic, which wear out quickly if you walk in them, and they will throw you down a flight of stairs when you're not paying attention.
MTB pedals are generally dual-sided and road pedals are generally single-sided, the result being that it's usually easier to clip in to an MTB pedal.
For commuting, I'd go with something like a Shimano M530 pedal ($30-40) and an entry-level MTB shoe in what ever brand fits the best (they vary widely, pun intended). The M530 pedal has a small platform and is a nice, stable pedal. I recently put a pair on m wife's 29er:
Get a road bike with compact cranks. End of story. Slap on some Crud Road Race fenders and you're good to roll any weather.
Find a good bike shop that has a reputation for good bike fit. Mark out all your measurements with a white out pen incase anything slips. Ive never had a drivers license. I figure Ive save over 150k just by being a commuter all these years.
+ 1, bike fit is important, some bike shops include it in the sale, others charge extra. In your price range you are probably better off getting a less name brand like Avanti or Malvern Star. I would go the racer and ask for a relax set up so its easy for the commute.
Come and ride with SSRC they are bunch of nice people and with a mixture of easy to harder rides.
I have bought numerous small items from both the Local Bike Shops you mentioned on Unley Road and they have been fine, not sure about bikes and bike fit though.
In your price range Tailwind at Reynella would have a few options worth considering including Merida.
Hunt around for last years model in a bike to save a few bucks, you want compact cranks and 11/27 or 28 cassette and see if you can find a bike with Shimano 105 gears.
Dont buy the wrong size bike, they need to measure you up to ensure they sell you the right frame size not just the one they have sitting on the floor.
You got a steep commute home, I'd suggest considering and discussing with your LBS Triple Cranks, there are road bike around with triple cranks at a reasonable price. There is a route to Blackwood from the back of Flinders that is more cyclists friendly than than the main road. Remember on really bad days, wet or hot, you can always ride to Lynton and take the train up the hill, bikes travel free during off peak or childs ticket price in peak hours.
ok, sorry for not quiet getting it yet, but are the 11/27 cassette the gears? what does the 11/27 (or 28) do to help with my ride? I really appreciate the advice, but before making decisions what I am going to do or not do, I want to understand how it impacts on the bike and my ability (or lack-there-of) to ride it.
Compact cranks the pedal crank cogs, compact means you have a 50 tooth cog and 34 tooth cog on the front, while standard crank often means you have 53 tooth and 39 tooth for example.
Likewise the rear cassette is the cluster of 10 gears on the rear wheel with 11 tooth being the smallest one use for sprinting down a slight decline while 25 tooth is the normal option provided to you, unless you ask for something more suited to hills, 28 tooth on the rear suits steep hilly work. In a 11/28 rear cassette the cogs will go increase in tooth numbers up to 28 tooth enabling you to progressive gear up or down as the incline changes.
Clive mentioned triple cogs on the front which gives you access to lower range of gears to suit hills, your price range will determine what is available, I road a triple flat bar first which was good for climbing, but my legs have adapted to the compact with 11/28 now and wouldnt go back to a triple. Most of the triples are not on the racers.
Great advice about the marking and the fenders!
What exactly do compact cranks help with? are cranks easily interchangeable or would I have to organise this at initial purchase?
compact cranks and a big cassette offer lower gears. If you buy a bike with the wrong gearing it is hugely expensive to fix the problem later on.
I would choose a flat bar roadie with a triple crank and fenders and a pannier rack so you dont need to wear everything on your back.
If you actually end up with too many gears you can just not use some of them.