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Bike options for Clydesdales - Cheapo

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Bike options for Clydesdales - Cheapo

Old 03-07-06, 04:41 PM
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MatL
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Mostly a repost from the Clydesdale thread in cycling.


Entering my 1st sprint tri as a Clydesdale.... 6'1" and 240 lbs age 34.

Looking to attempt my 1st sprint triathlon in June so I should somewhat weigh less by then. But I have a limited budget and don't want to spend more than $450 -- yeah I know, but I have to save some $ for helmet & wet suit.


I'm attempting to find a cheap bike to train and run my tri race with. Current goals 1) FINISHING the race , 2) keeping within the front 2/3 for my age & size + novice level.

Wondering if I could run more of a comfort bike that would put up with my size and be more comfortable than a true TRI bike. I was looking at a "K2 Astral 4.0 Flat Bar" or a "IBEX Corrida CT 3.3".

Otherwise <if you think I am NUTS> any thoughts or suggestions for a cheap bike that will hold my weight... other than putting race wheels on the mountain bike in the rafters.

Last edited by MatL; 03-07-06 at 04:51 PM.
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Old 03-07-06, 05:38 PM
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If you already have a mountain bike I would say use it for now.

Use some of that money to get it checked out by a bike shop, cleaned, lubed the whole deal, and buy some slicks(tires with no tread).

Helmet, anything that is approved will work(forget the certifying agency).

Wetsuit, any wetsuit will work, thinner is better, like a 2 or a 2.5mm. Swimming wetsuits are upwards of a few hundred bucks and you would be better to wait to see if you really want to get into the sport first.
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Old 03-07-06, 08:10 PM
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I would hold off on the wetsuit until you know you want to consistently do this. That would:
A. save you $200
or
B. Bump up your bike price to $650 which would get you a great beginner bike.

As far as bikes, go talk to all your LBS's and see if they have consignment. Maybe see if they'll let you post a wanted ad. My choice would be for option 'B' and buy a Trek 1000, Giant OCR, Fuji Newest, etc. and put some aerobars on it. Then, in a year or two if you are still serious about the sport, you can upgrade.
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Old 03-07-06, 09:54 PM
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GO to GearWest, tell someone what you're looking to do and stick with your old bike. Get a helmet, some decent running shoes and some comfortable clothing. If you find you like this sport that stuff will last a while, upgraditis will kill a comfort bike in about 4 months.
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Old 03-07-06, 10:41 PM
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Thanks for the good ideas!

especially since I am just dipping my toes in the sprint tri water - so to speak.

batman - I can definitely change out the tires & do a tune-up way cheaper than a new bike.

cslone - I am signed up for a race June 4 and Aug 12. MN lakes in 1st week of June can be very chilly, but by Aug they will be fine. So I get your point, if I only need the wetsuit 1x save the $200 and look to spend the $ elsewhere. Thankfully the June race is only a 1/4 mile swim.

TriGuy - Gear West - that would be in Long Lake right? Looked at their website http://gearwestbike.com lots of choices and little bits & pieces to feed the upgraditis.
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Old 03-08-06, 08:13 AM
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you can always rent a wetsuit........
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Old 03-08-06, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by LBonney
you can always rent a wetsuit........

ooops, forgot about that one. Ya, my vote goes to rent a wetsuit.
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Old 03-08-06, 07:42 PM
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i'm looking to get back into road riding after 10 years of strictly mountain biking and a year off recovering from knee surgeries. i'm a clydesdale at 6-2 and 245 . my lbs has offered me a 2005 Giant ocr 1 for 2300. or a 2005 ocr limited for 1550. i really l.ike both bikes but know i'm going to want to upgrade sometime in the future. is it worth it to buy the ocr comp 1 since it has dura ace, better wheels krysium elite, carbon crank, better brakes etc. the only thing keeping me from getting the comp 1 is the red color. he offered to build up all the parts on a comp 2 or 3 for the same price. by the way i'm not going to be doing any racing just long rides through nor cal.

Last edited by neveo; 03-08-06 at 07:48 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 03-08-06, 08:47 PM
  #9  
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I returned to cycling after a 20+ year hiatus a bit ago. Now 18 months later my Giant OCR touring, which is a mode of the OCR elite, is not satisfying. I would suggest figuring out your hot buttons first.

1. Which is more important to you: going faster/distances with least effort, or
going slower and watching the scenery. You didn't say what part of N Ca you're in so don't know area.

2. What is appealing about tri to you, i.e. are you ever considering riding in a tri, or just lurking to find out about the sport.

When I bought my bike I didn't have a clue and had to go with recommendations. Now I finally understand the difference between the TCR and OCR lines. Basically the OCR is set so you can ride more vertical easier and the TCR is set up so you can ride a bit more aero.

If you might ride tri, or if you like going longer distances or faster, you should look at something like the TCR aero 1 or 2. #1 is about $1800 MSRP 2005, #2 is $1200 MSRP 2005. A 2005 TCR aero #2 is $2300. I would lean more towards the TCR aero 2 model as I think 105/ultregra is a good mix. I wouldn't hurt to go to level 1 though.

Yeap, relooked at specs. I would go with the level 2 model. What it is missing is aero bars. Take a look at the TCR Trinity 2. $3500, but you should be satisfied with the bike for a long time, unless you have a touring bent. Strange photo of the bike, usually the bar end shifters are pointing more horizontal and most of your upper body weight is on the aero bar arm rests. Don't worry too much about being bent over so you can't ride. With the changed angle it's like riding half way between on top of the brake levers, hoods, and at the bottom of the bar, drops.

Besides the aero positioning, next best bang for the bucks are: an aero front wheel like Hed 3, Alps or Zipp 808, then an aero rear wheel, use a seat post rack to carry your repair tools and carry alongs. If you go with something like a trinity, make sure LBS knows how to fit you properly to the bike. Ask for either FIST knowledge or FIST certification.

Good luck, you're in a fun spot. I'm in an un-fun spot. I know what I want now, but it is more than my budget. So it's limp along with what you started with and work more on body conditioning this year.
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Old 03-09-06, 09:48 AM
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slick tires and clip on aero bars on a moutain bike make a very seviceable tri bike, particularly for a sprint distance. You won't do much, if any better spending $450 on a new bike. I'd ride what you got with the above adjustments. Then if you see yourself staying with this, start saving for a nice road bike in the $1000 range. If you buy the $450 bike and don't stay with it, it's $450 lost. If you buy the $450 bike and really get into it, you'll want something a little nicer pretty soon, and wish you had the $450 to help toward a little nicer bike.
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Old 03-20-06, 12:57 PM
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Follow up post....

May be useful for other's who want to try a sprint triathlon on the cheap ...

I am going with the $20 slicks on the MB + a tune-up - approx $39. Waiting bike shop to complete tire replacement, but with recent snow I should be 1st in line for a bike tune-up. :-) Will have something that will work for training and the race by the end of the week.


I also found how easy it is to succumb to accessory / upgrade-itis as mentioned by TriGuy. I went out to sporting goods store by my In-Laws (EauClaire WI) and couldn't help but look at their bike section. Thankfully I was looking at the bargain bin for last years stuff. Found a few things.

Small frame pump <$9 with single adapter fits multiple styles of valves & has a couple patches/sandpaper/replacment end in the handle. Looks like you could 'bolt on' or 'velcro on' the pump to the bar. Will need to determine good location for mounting, but it would really suck NOT to be able to fix a flat either when training OR during the race.

Cage Style Pedals < $10... I've seen a lot of folks go with clipless, but the clipless pedals + shoes aren't cheap. I will try these cage pedals out, but they may be going back. Downside could be installation... will re-read the instructions and look at the tools I have available.

Bike Helmet. I compared prices on bike helmets. Prices started at $35 and went up to $80+. Of course they recommended the lightweght $80 vented helmet, but at my weight (240lbs) an extra 1/4 lb of bike helmet weight isn't what is slowing me down. However, when I went over to a discount store (Shopko similar to Target) and found 'schwinn branded' helmet <$10. Fit looked good with quick adjustment in the store. Once the snow melts I will see how comfortable it is. Helmet had similar venting to the more expensive ones and really saved on my budget.



So far BIKE cost is

reuse existing monutain bike $0
new tires $42.60 (incl tax)
tune up $42 (est tax)
frame pump $9.44 (incl tax)
helmet $10.50 (incl tax)
cage pedals $10.50 (incl tax) *may need info on installation or pay for install :-(, but I won't need to buy special clipless shoes.

Current Bike Total $115.04




Other items I hope to procure cheaply....

*bike tools/tire levers - looked at bargain section, but didn't find good combo tools for fixing flat & adjusting bike. But having a frame pump is worthless IF I can't get to the tube so I WILL need to buy something.

*spare tubes (if I can't patch the existing tube, use a new one.)

*Bike Bag (to hold the tools, tubes, any other accessories)

*waterbottle holder



Now on to find the rest of my gear... on a budget. Thanks to all for their input.


Mat
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Old 03-20-06, 06:53 PM
  #12  
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I think you did a good job on a budget. You'll be buying a roadie in no time!
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Old 06-19-06, 10:36 AM
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Quick update for all to prove you can start out relatively cheap. I did pick up some tri-shorts and found a cheap waterski style wetsuit (a shorty) and finished.

Additional purchases

Tri Short $35
Wesuit $60
Bike Tool Kit $12

New Subtotal $222



And yes - I did finish the race - 1:48:50

Swim 8:38: Fast for me
T1 5:31
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Old 06-24-06, 07:36 PM
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Nice work. I'm also a new triathlete and also in Minnesota. I chose to buy a wetsuit.... these lakes are cold until late June, and every race up here lets you do them. It is not like you would never use it again. This is the land of 10,000 lakes, and I'm guessing that someday you'll be waterskiing, jet skiing, or doing another tri and will use it.

I was VERY tempted to do what you did with the bike, but here is what I did instead: I sent to my local bike shop and got fitted on a Trek (figured they are so common I'd see alot of used ones). Then, I waited for a decent road bike to come up on Ebay and pounced on it. Got a Trek 2000. $1,000 bike brand new, I got it for around $400. Sure, it isn't a 5200 or a Colnago, but it gives me the gearing I need to really cruise along. Plus, about 50% of my training rides are done on my mountain bike (due to great gravel / dirt trails in my area) so I didn't want all of my investment tied up in a road bike.

Welcome to the world of triathlons! Which one are you doing in August?
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Old 06-25-06, 04:45 PM
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Hi guys. New here....I've been lurking for some time.

New to Tri's and did my first last year. Am a 45 yr old Clyde myself at 5'-11" and now down to 230 lbs. I chimed in as you mentioned the Aug 12th Tri. Nevis, MN perhaps?

I took your route last year and entered as economical as I could. Rode my Trek 7200 cross, cheapo wetsuit (too thick of neoprene) on eBay, cheapo helmet and shoes, and baggy shorts with chamois.

my upgrades for this year have been a...
30 lb weight loss
Bought a Specialized Roubaix....buying a few upgrades for it from eBay (selling the old Trek and factory equip from Specialized really cuts down on the total $$).
Running shoes
A lighter, more "stretchy" wetsuit.
I've also "upgraded" my cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure....uh...and my waist line.

Entered two events this year
...Buffalo, MN a few weeks ago and Nevis, MN on the Aug 12th.

I would never have posted here, but had to enter my 2 cents as a fellow Clyde trying to save a few $$. This "sport" is a blast. I still contemplate if it's a true "sport" at my level vs. an "event". This Sprint Tri stuff is the only thing thats motivated my lazy rear to lose some weight and get outside in the last 20 years. At 1+ years into it, I still like it.
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Old 06-26-06, 08:08 AM
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Nice work, big cat.

You are right in that the best investments you can make in triathlon are to cut the weight, waistline, and improve overall health. After one of my tri's, I was frustrated with my bike time. I asked a triathlon friend what I might be able to do to get more competitive in that event. He said "get stronger quads".

But I agree with the bike thing. You need to at least get to a mid-level bike in order to really enjoy it. Plus, I'm convinced that if you like your gear, you'll end up training alot more. It happened when I upgraded by bikes.
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Old 08-17-06, 12:53 PM
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Hazelmn & BigCat,

You are correct! I was a Northwoods in Nevis. Sorry I missed you. I am still biking with the MTB, but I did get a present for Fathers Day. Some clip on aero-bars. :-) Now normally they won't fit on a MTB handlebar, but with some adapters and a few pieces of tough rubber... they are on and aren't moving and they do make a difference.

I like the idea of fitting to a common line of bikes and looking for some used. Perhaps if I can drop 25 - 30 lbs, I will treat myself to a nice used roadie. So I won't get a new one until I'm 210 - 215 lbs. My main upgrades for next season will be to drop weight, increase strength, and really increase endurance. Especially trying to build the endurance to do the run... By itself I can to a 9:30 mile on a 4 mile course with hills, but once you add in the swim/bike ahead of the run -- I start getting slow.



I actually ended up adding 1 bonus race. I did the Prior Lake Lakefront days tri. It was a fun race and a tuneup since it was the weekend before Northwoods.

Here are my Nevis Northwoods results.... I cut over 9 minutes off of my Buffalo time so I feel like I am doing better. Thanks to everyone on your ideas. Plus I hope to see you out on the course next year.

Swim
place 65
time 8:58
pace 2:03

T1 2:52

Bike
place 167
time 51:17
pace 16.4

T2 1:35

Run
place 209
time 34:36
pace 11:09

Total: 1:39:17
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Old 08-20-06, 07:59 PM
  #18  
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One thing that hasn't been mentioned yet, mostly for other lurkers (like I've been for a while) just starting in triathlons: rent a bike for the day! One of our LBS's here in Austin rents perfectly nice Specialized Allez bikes (can't remember specifics) for about $30 a day, and that's what I did for a couple of training days and race day for a sprint in June. My first tri, and a real eye opener.

And then I went out and bought a Felt F80 a couple of months later. I have problems with instant gratification, even though I bought it on the day I quit my job. Ha!

But I'm hooked now, and love my bike even stock. Now I'm giving myself a crash course in maintenance and upgrades.

Anyway, just a thought that might or might not help out any newbies like me. If I didn't enjoy the biking part (and trust me, I had comfort issues at first) I'd have only been out about sixty bucks for the rental. Luckily, I'm now fully hooked and just really in need of some biking shorts.

Congrats on your times (much better than mine, if the distances were similar) and keep it up!
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Old 08-21-06, 10:20 AM
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BlackChop... I hope your race season is going well. I was a lurker too until I actually started reasearching what I need for completing a sprint. Then I had sticker shock... so I started this thread.


Daily rental: Yet another good idea. My wife was asking the other day *HOW* can a $1000 - 4000 bike be that much better? I think that if we could BOTH rent a 'real' road bike and use it on a paved route we used the MTB on... That might be easier just showing her the differnce a road bike makes, rather than talking about 'features' and weight and frame geometry.


Congrats on the F80 -- rock on. For a budget minded tri-guy like myself I hope you got a good deal on it. :-) Sounds like you are fully hooked -- which is a good thing.

Regarding my times. Thanks.... distances were 1/4 mile swim 14 mile bike and 5K run. Although, if I had to run in the Texas heat, I doubt my times would be that good. I am already looking forward to next year.

mat
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Old 08-21-06, 11:19 AM
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BigCatDaddy - just read your write-up in the Nevis paper - good stuff.

Also nice time improvement on this years race -- going from last years 2:00:43 to a stellar 1:36:08 - that's over 24 minutes of improvement.... you rock doc.
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Old 08-23-06, 08:18 AM
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You are going to have t pardon my ignorance here, but is a "Clydesdale"????
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Old 08-23-06, 12:55 PM
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The breed of horse that pulls the Budweiser wagon!

Or in sporting events those who are over 200-220lbs for males and over 150-160lbs for female (Athenas).

I have seen a range of weights assigned to these classifications.
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Old 08-23-06, 04:34 PM
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you will get so addicted to triathlon, that you wont be a clydesdale for long. Therefore, dont buy a wetsuit....yet!! Your size will be changing!!
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Old 08-23-06, 05:02 PM
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As a recent first timer, I did or would do the following (I realize I am a little late but maybe it will help someone else)

- Definitely skip the wet suit; rent one if you really need it.
- Start looking on your local craigslist and such for a used road bike. I got a 2006 Dawes with an aluminum frame, carbon fork, STI shifters etc. for $300, and the purchase price included a set of Forte T1 aerobars that had only been used twice. This bike was good enough for me to do the 20K bike portion in around 40 minutes, and then jump off and run the 5K in 24 minutes (the order of this event was bike-run-swim).
- Get a helmet and some decent tri-shorts. I got both of these items for cheap from my LBS.
- I used straps instead of clipless pedals and shoes; didn't feel like my pedaling was weak.

My totals:
- Bike = $300
- Tri shorts = $25
- Helmet = $25
- Bike accessories (bottles, bottlecages etc.) = $25
- Getting second place among all first-timers = priceless

Good luck.
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Old 08-23-06, 09:06 PM
  #25  
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Is there a "Percheron" class??? It's a horse that's a little shorter-wider than a Clydesdale.
BTW I purchased a used 2003 Trek Hilo 1000 locally with about 50 miles on it for $475 (no kidding, including brand new Shimano carbon shoes in my size)
That purchase was a little impulsive but has inspired me to try a tri (sprint) next year. Kinda backwards I know but I'm funny (haha) that way.

-Judson
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