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PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:16 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed May 27, 2009 10:41 am
Posts: 673
I'm thinking of getting a road bike but am on a low budget and know nothing about whats good and whats not. Any pointers please on good frame tubes, gears etc.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 4:32 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
Posts: 2399
Location: Sheffield, top city
you need to decide what type of road bike
ROAD RACER - steeper frame angles, higher gears, no room for mudguards. Generally light, fast and built for performance

TOURER - slacker angles, clearance for wider tyres and mudguards, fittings for racks etc., low gears for hauling loads. Generally fairly light weight, but built for comfort, durability and load carrying. Will feel slower than an out-and-out racer, but faster than an MTB

COMMUTER - depends on the terrain and weather you travel in. Might need low gears if its a hilly ride, might want mudguards if your travelling all year, poss fittings for rack and lights. Or you might want a fast-blast to work on sunny days. Might only want single speed. No such thing as one-size-fits-all here.

Then consider frame material
STEEL - durable, can be repaired or repainted, can have rack braze ons added. Heavier than other materials, but comfortable and will have long life.
ALUM - good alloy is light, some cheap alloy import frames arent much lighter than good steel. Not renowned for comfort, but stiff and efficient at transmitting effort. Can be repaired.
CARBON - tends to be performance oriented and expensive and durability is questionable. Very comfortable. No warning of impending breakage.
the choice of todays racers.
TITANIUM - expensive, but supposedly lasts for life with no fatigue. Used by both racers and tourists at top levels. Extremely comfortable. Can be repaired.

Once youve decided the above, based on intended use and budget, then can you make a reasoned choice of complete bike.
You always get more value for money with a well-cared, used bike than buying new.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 10:41 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:35 am
Posts: 383
Peugeot and Raleigh come to mind, both are available in great numbers and they generally aren't that expensive. You can pick one of those up for very little money and ride it for a bit to see what you like about it and what you don't like, and by the time you've got some money to spend on a nicer bike you'll have some experience and you'll be able to choose a bike that suits your needs.

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