Author Topic: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)  (Read 5439 times)

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Offline smittya40

I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« on: February 23, 2009, 12:10:20 pm »
I am looking to get involved in bike touring. I am considering buying a '03 Giant OCR 1. Would this be a good bike for long distance touring? Please adise, any and all input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Offline RussSeaton

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2009, 05:30:43 pm »
I am looking to get involved in bike touring. I am considering buying a '03 Giant OCR 1. Would this be a good bike for long distance touring? Please adise, any and all input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

http://www.roadbikereview.com/cat/2003-bikes/2003-road-bike/giant-bicycle-inc/PRD_138775_4338crx.aspx

I would put this bike into the credit card touring department.  Not the loaded touring category.  I suspect you could put a rear rack onto the bike (via U clamps) and then carry small rear panniers and/or rack top bag.  Or one of those Berthoud bags on the seat.  Given the descriptions I saw I don't think it accomodates fenders or has rack eyelets.  It should/might handle 28mm tires.

Offline BC

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2009, 06:28:26 pm »
I agree with Russ that this model would probably be difficult, if not impractical, to rig for fully loaded touring. Giant used to make an OCR Touring model - I owned an '04 version, set up to take racks and fenders, and equipped with disc brakes. That Giant would be appropriate for loaded touring. With any bike that has a shorter wheel base, you may have a hard time mounting a rear rack and panniers with enough room for your heels to clear as you pedal through. Touring models generally have a wheel base long to accomodate racks and panniers without "heel-strike" issues. There are plenty of considerations in choosing your tourer, and I'm sure others will weigh in on some of them. Good luck!

Offline Westinghouse

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2009, 02:05:38 am »
Buying a good touring bike requires some knowledge. There should be some books on bicycles and bicycle touring in your local library if you live in the US or Europe. Read about touring bikes in particular. Know for sure what differentiates a touring bike from others. Make sure what you are considering buying has all the features a touring bike has. I would advise against looking for your bike in any department store like Target, Wal Mart, or K Mart. While they have bikes with the same features as good touring bikes, they are less efficient machines. Ride them a while, and then try a well made touring bike. The difference is easy to notice.

Offline biker_james

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2009, 07:12:37 am »
I think that starting out, you are most likely to find a bike suited for loaded touring, presuming that is what you plan, by sticking to the few affordable poroduction models out there. Trek 520, Cannondale Touring, Surly Long Haul Trucker. There are certainly others, but those are the ones you'll most likely run into, and all are capable tourers. If budget is a concern, and you are looking for something more affordable, you may want to look at a hardtail mountain bike (new or used). With racks, slick tires, and barends you can make a failry decent touring bike from one.

Offline Fred Hiltz

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2009, 07:37:43 am »
Further to the good advice above, check out our own http://www.adventurecycling.org/
 web site's How To department, especially the articles Bike Travel Basics and Choosing a Touring Bike for the Road.

Fred

Offline Westinghouse

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2009, 10:45:41 am »
Do not overlook the possibility of getting a used bike. I have seen some real killer deals on very good touring bikes. Sure, they are not available all the time, but they do come along. There was a nice Trek hybrid I think it was at a Goodwill store for about $45.00. It was soon gone. I saw a perfectly good Fuji touring bike for about $50.00 in a thrift store. You may have to change components for a long loaded tour, which is something that can be done inexpensively enough. I saw a used Trek hybrid for sale at a bike store for $75.00. I checked it out closely by eye. In my opinion, it was ready to go, and probably could have stood a cross country tour easily.

Offline bikeparts

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2009, 09:53:25 am »
 Newbie,
           I am a newbie to this Forum also and Welcome.Like other have said on this Forum there are a number of solid Touring Bikes. Cannadale T1,T2,Treck,520 and Shurley.I have used Cannadale T2,its about $1,300 New.I have crossed the US twice and Never had any problems with it.There are people who are selling them second hand and you might find one,that could save you a couple of $.Hope you find what your looking for.Good Luck

Offline DaveB

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2009, 08:39:13 pm »
I would advise against looking for your bike in any department store like Target, Wal Mart, or K Mart. While they have bikes with the same features as good touring bikes, they are less efficient machines.
I would phrase this a lot more strongly.  DO NOT, under any circumstances even consider buying ANY bike from K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Target, etc.  They are a lot worse than just "less efficient". 

I've tried to adjust several of these things for friends who didn't know any better and found them so substandard they never worked properly. 

Go to a reputable bike shop or a place like REI, where they sell good bikes, can recommend a model that is suitable for your intended use and will fit it to you properly.   

Offline ROB/OPTIMO

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2009, 12:19:53 am »
Check out the Jamis Aroura best bang for the buck

Offline Westinghouse

Re: I need advice on a bike (and yes I am a newbie)
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2009, 07:28:37 am »
I would advise against looking for your bike in any department store like Target, Wal Mart, or K Mart. While they have bikes with the same features as good touring bikes, they are less efficient machines.
I would phrase this a lot more strongly.  DO NOT, under any circumstances even consider buying ANY bike from K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Target, etc.  They are a lot worse than just "less efficient". 

I've tried to adjust several of these things for friends who didn't know any better and found them so substandard they never worked properly. 

Go to a reputable bike shop or a place like REI, where they sell good bikes, can recommend a model that is suitable for your intended use and will fit it to you properly.   

I found out the hard way myself back in 1984. I was planning my first long tour by bicycle, and was ignorant about bikes. I went to the department store, bought a ten-speed for little money, and began my training rides. I used to put a weight on the rear rack to make the pedaling more strenuous.  I  talked with some more experienced cyclists about my intended tour of England, Scotland, and Wales. A couple of them asked in an obvious sort of way, "What? You're going to tour on that?" Well, I got the message and took me to the library to do some research on bicycles and bicycle touring, and this opened up a new world to me. I had no idea there was so much information on bicycles. I did my homework, and began a new search for a "real" touring bike. I ended up going to a town 22 miles away from my home to buy one. In those days, 1984, it cost about $160.00 to $190.00. Not top of the line but obviously a much more efficient machine than the department store bike. The whole feel of it was superior to the other bike. It was really easily discernable; a much better product.

Can you cross America on a Wal Mart special? You can. You can also walk around with lead boots on your feet, but what would be the point in it? You can enter a souped up car race with a four cylinder jeep too, but it would not be the appropriate machine for the intended purpose. The same with a department store bike. It can be done, but if you do it, you are using the wrong machine. Scrap going to department stores looking for a cross country touring bike.