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Thread: Cycling

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    Seasoned Pro cfdh_edmundo's Avatar
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    Cycling

    Ok lads am thinking of buying a bike, the last time I cycled was back in 1997, so I'm well out of touch with bikes. I would be a casual cyclist and would want a half way cross between a mountain bike and a normal (racing bike), any tips on what bike to get, the costs etc ?
    "You have to be fair in football - you have to be honest and well done to you if you've won, but you have to win in a good way." T. Henry, Stade de France, Arsenal 1 - 2 Barcelona, 16-05-2006.

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    If you just want it to scoot down to the shops and such then it doesn't really matter all that much I suppose. You can get a bog standard bike for about €100 new, but you might want to go for a middle of the road (not literally ) one as the cheap ones tend to depreciate much quicker if not cared for I've found. A reasonable second-hand bike should cost €50-€70, and is the best option if you just want one for intermittent local use.

    On the other hand if you plan on going on longish cycles then you'd probably want more of a road bike - one with bigger wheels and narrower tyres so that it covers the ground faster. You can get a decent, new one of these in Ireland for maybe €180 or so. In terms of marque I couldn't be all that sure (I think Bluebeard is the resident expert - he reads cycling magazines!) but I'd imagine there's a close correlation between price and quality given there isn't really the same social status attached to what brand of bike you have (once you're over 14 of course).

    In terms of what to look out for, I think a comfy saddle is paramount. Number of gears isn't really relevant. If you're a small enough fella you might want to make sure you're not buying a very big bike, and vice versa, but anyway, you should go for a test spin before buying to make sure the bike cycles pretty smoothly and that you generally like the feel of it.

    Overall, I'd strongly encourage a purchase. Admittedly pedals have almost been outgrowths of my feet for as long as I can remember but cycling really is a great, fun, easyish way to keep fit, especially if running is hard on your joints. Oh and if you're in the Kerry area around the 5th of July then you must join me for a charity cycle around the beautiful (mere 100 mile) Ring of Kerry!

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    First Team Billsthoughts's Avatar
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    I love the bike as well. I cycle to and from work and its just so much nicer way to start the day then cramped on a luas or a bus. Yeah the weather in Ireland isnt perfect but a bit of rain isnt the end of the world. I think I got ridden when I bought mine tho I have spent as much fixing it since....As above saddle important. crossbar should go up to your waist I think(open to correction). make sure it has all the things like mud guards and lights and stuff. oil the chain regularly(). I only ever use about 3 of the gears on it so wouldnt worry too much about them unless your gaff is situated on top of the tourmilez(sp?). Just on a related note how does anyone find cycling in Dublin? I thought things would improve with the greens in power but it is atrocious. cycling lanes should not be on roads. far too dangerous. I cycle on the path all the way to work. controversial. apparently. the amount of oul wans(generally) that feel the need to point it out is amazing. I always make a point of stopping and letting them know the realities of cycling in dublin.

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    I commute every day by bike, on one of these Bad Boys (literally)
    Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra. Have another road bike for weekend spins.
    Yes conditions are atrocious in Dublin, and the rules aren't enforced either (the looks I get whenever I point out blatant law breaking to the cops). Still, have only hit the ground once in 10 years (still, it only takes once and you're a dead man). The key is not to be cycling like a mad man, and try out different routes - a slightly longer route might be a lot safer.
    It rains far, far less than people think. I wear wet weather gear no more than once or twice a month. If you are going to commute by bike it is definitely worth spending money on decent wet weather gear though for the times you need it.

    oh and check out the Dublin Cycling Campaign

    ps mods might want to split the thread

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    Seasoned Pro cfdh_edmundo's Avatar
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    Thanks very much for the advice that Cannondale looks like the type of bike I'd want, a kind of cross between the road / racing bikes (the ones with big thin wheels, which i've tended to struggle on) and a mountain bike. What sort of price would a cannondale like that cost ? And are there any similar makes ? Sorry for all the questions but the last bike I brought was a Raleigh Tomcat BMX back in 1989 so I'm well out of the scene.
    "You have to be fair in football - you have to be honest and well done to you if you've won, but you have to win in a good way." T. Henry, Stade de France, Arsenal 1 - 2 Barcelona, 16-05-2006.

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    That Cannondale was very expensive tbh (my logic is that I spend more time on it than in a car, so spent the money on it). It has front shocks (though there's a cheaper version without the front shocks) which are great for commuting, mounting kerbs, potholes etc.
    It has the wide forks to take mountain bike tyres, but if you want to go mountain biking you'll need a mountainbike. On the other hand, a racing bike is not great for commuting (imo, although I see people using them).
    You can browse www.evanscycles.com or www.cyclesuperstore.ie to get an idea of prices and models.
    Trek do decent hybrids at good prices. Specialized are also good value for money. Trek, Specialized and Cannondale are all American (afaik) so with the weak dollar there should be good value to be had.

    Also try www.cycleways.com
    Last edited by monutdfc; 13/06/2008 at 5:19 PM.

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    Coach John83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Billsthoughts View Post
    I love the bike as well. I cycle to and from work and its just so much nicer way to start the day then cramped on a luas or a bus. Yeah the weather in Ireland isnt perfect but a bit of rain isnt the end of the world.
    I think people overstate the problem of rain. I cycle daily, and only occasionally get really wet.
    Dental Plan

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    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
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    Same here; amazing how little it actually rains compared to how often you think it rains.

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    Seasoned Pro Bluebeard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cfdh_edmundo View Post
    Thanks very much for the advice that Cannondale looks like the type of bike I'd want, a kind of cross between the road / racing bikes (the ones with big thin wheels, which i've tended to struggle on) and a mountain bike. What sort of price would a cannondale like that cost ? And are there any similar makes ? Sorry for all the questions but the last bike I brought was a Raleigh Tomcat BMX back in 1989 so I'm well out of the scene.
    You might want to look at wiggle, particularly this page, for an idea what they cost on the wrong side of the water.

    Personally, I don't like the idea of buying a bike you'll be spending a lot of time on from the net, but the reality is sometimes it is much cheaper.
    That question was less stupid, though you asked it in a profoundly stupid way.

    Help me, Arthur Murphy, you're my only hope!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dodge
    I bow to no one. bar Bluebeard and Mr A

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    First Team noby's Avatar
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    I'm in the market for a bike myself. I haven't had one since I was a teenager, but from reading this thread, and browsing around it seems a road bike (hybrid?) is what I'm looking for, right? It'll be used for going to work, and a few weekend spins.
    Any other tips before I call in to the shop?
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    First Team Billsthoughts's Avatar
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    worth spending that little bit extra on in the begining as you will end up spending it on maintenance anyways. need something sturdy for dublin as road are poor.
    Kingdom Hoop how did you get on with ring of kerry cycle?
    I think I am going to do this next year

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    Seasoned Pro Bluebeard's Avatar
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    If I'm right in thinking that Noby might be using it on the roads of Dungarvan, the main roads, from my memory, are quite alright, but the back roads are not great. There are a few decent local hills, including at least one that featured in Le Tour in 98, if memory serves, though I don't think it counted to the Polka Dot Jersey (Incidentally, does any one know where on line I can browse the old route through Ireland that was followed? I went to see it in Dublin, but unfortunately not in my own native lands).

    It will depend on your price bracket to some extent. What would possibly suit, depending on your needs, would be a straight handle-bar Hybrid, probably an 18 to 21 gear bike - something with a lighter road (racing) type frame, but slightly larger wheels (not the big mountain bike type). If you are cycling around Dublin, (particularly the North side, where there were fewer bike lanes that weren't designated pothole protection areas), or anywhere that the roads are not great, the bigger wheels might make a major difference, but they can be a pain if you are wanting to get about with a bit of speed.

    Probably the most important two things you can do, if you have money and time and access, is to get the right size and a bike with a good frame:
    I've currently a mountain bike for off road stuff that is too big, and a road bike that is a bit too small (Bluielocks continues in his quest for Baby Bear's bike!) - when I go for protracted spins regularly on either, they would tend to wreck me.
    A good frame should last you a lifetime (notwithstanding technical developments and fashion in frame design), while you should be able to replace and upgrade the components (brakes, gears, wheels, cranks, etc.) as necessary when they wear out - better a good frame and sh!t components than a crappy frame with Campag Records.
    That question was less stupid, though you asked it in a profoundly stupid way.

    Help me, Arthur Murphy, you're my only hope!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dodge
    I bow to no one. bar Bluebeard and Mr A

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    First Team noby's Avatar
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    Thanks for the detailed responses. As it happens I went out yesterday and bought a bike. It's a straight handle-bar hybrid with 21 gears, so I must have done something right.
    I survived the trip to work this morning, mainly downhill. Going home should be fun. I'm not as fit as I could be.

    As for the Tour route, it's surely no-line somewhere, but it was from Enniscorthy to Cork, wasn't it? The Waterford section was through Carrick, down to the N25 at Lemybrien, and straight to Cork, passing through Dungarvan.
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    Seasoned Pro Bluebeard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noby View Post
    As for the Tour route, it's surely no-line somewhere, but it was from Enniscorthy to Cork, wasn't it? The Waterford section was through Carrick, down to the N25 at Lemybrien, and straight to Cork, passing through Dungarvan.
    Got the finger out and looked - Stage 2 is there alright, including the Cat 4 climb (it was a KOM job alright!) just after Dungarvan - Cóte de Curtiswood?! A description of the stages is here

    At 205km long, it took the peloton 5h45m - that'd be some afternoon's ride for most of us I'd imagine. Give it a go on the new bike Noby and tell us how it was
    That question was less stupid, though you asked it in a profoundly stupid way.

    Help me, Arthur Murphy, you're my only hope!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dodge
    I bow to no one. bar Bluebeard and Mr A

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    First Team noby's Avatar
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    Cóte de Curtiswood (the top of the sweep) is just over from my house. I'd struggle going down it, never mind up it.
    The Cat 3 climb outside Carrick was Sean Kelly's trip home from school every day. No wonder.
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    Seasoned Pro Bluebeard's Avatar
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    Interesting bike concept from a Chinese guy that has been flagged what with t'Olympics.
    That question was less stupid, though you asked it in a profoundly stupid way.

    Help me, Arthur Murphy, you're my only hope!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dodge
    I bow to no one. bar Bluebeard and Mr A

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