Saturday, June 28, 2008

I hate it when this happens...

I have a whole logjam of words in my noggin. Three or four posts. A Low End Mac column. Some email responses. They're all swirling around in there, 90% written, and something is keeping them from getting to my fingertips. (I even have relevant articles open in tabs at the top of my browser window to remind me. One is two days old now.)

Bleh.

In other news, I need to buy me a bike so I can go pedaling about Broad Ripple with my roomie. I'm debating going cheap, but also thinking a little better than the usual $40 garage sale fodder might be nice as well. I haven't made up my mind to sell it yet, but is anybody out there interested in an Armi Sport replica of a Pattern 1853 three-band Enfield? Perfect if you want to go play Civil War dress-up on the weekends. Drop me an email if such a thing might tickle your fancy...

18 comments:

Kristopher said...

How much do you wanna spend?

How much bike do you want?

http://clevercycles.com/

These folks are about 20 miles from me ... $2k or so for a Retrovolo or an Xtracycle will get you a bike that will last a lifetime.

Xavier just discovered them himself, and their inventory has him drooling ... heh.

mostly cajun said...

My dimmocrat blog buddy just today posted a well-written article about buying bikes. try http://www.decrepitoldfool.com/index.php/weblog/comments/elite_transportation27jun08/

MC

RedneckInNY said...

Are you talking road bike or mountain bike (no suspension, front suspension or full suspension)? If you get a road bike, you'll have to wear the requisite spandex shorts and top. Woohooo! I can just see you in spandex now...LOL!! Seriously, a good road bike will still cost around $700 and an alright mountain bike will cost around $300. I would suggest going to Wal-Mart if we weren't all boycotting them right now. You could try Cabela's - they have mountain bikes in the stores here where I live; they might have them there. They might even buy your gun from you for their gun library.

the pawnbroker said...

tam, check out xavier's bike archive; some of the weird/cool stuff he has bought/built for cheap almost makes my big butt want to ride pedal power again.

jtc

Mark@Sea said...

Hanging in my garage is a very nice bike. Aluminimum lightweight frame, but tough enough for mountain biking. Paid about 450 for it ten or twelve years ago, and got a good deal at the time. Spent about 9 of those years at sea, the bike is darn near new.
You feel like swinging by east TN?

Tam said...

"You feel like swinging by east TN?"

*sigh* I can't even afford the gas right now. I'd planned on dropping by Nashville and swinging through TX this summer, but that's all pretty well scotched at the moment.

tom-the-impaler said...

I had a Trek I liked just fine on campus. Hint, don't buy knobbly off road tires unless you're really going off road. I replaced the off road tires on the trek with the type the local bike cops use and saved a lot of personal energy.

LabRat said...

Oh, I have so much sympathy for you on the post thing. I have... let me see... four or five of them like that, some that have been there for months. I'm to the point of giving them cute nicknames. Some would-be posts I lose because I get halfway through and realize they suffer from a fatal logical flaw, but these just... lack something to animate them.

Very. Frustrating.

Will said...

Costco carries a couple of bikes. Normally have full suspensions. Look good for the money.

Kristopher said...

Craigslist if cash is the problem.

Only downside is that you may be supporting a damned tweaker bike thief.

og said...

I just bought a used Trek 800. A great bike, perfect size for my 12 year old. By which I mean to say get a BIG bike. One of the big trek comfort bikes is a good choice if you have.. ahem... a 34" inseam. Buy used, buy a Trek, or Canondale (if you can afford it) but stay away from Schwinn and WalMart stuff. Or go the retro route and buy something old and funky, like these Armstrong (british) bikes, only a few miles from you.

http://cgi.ebay.com/AMF-mens-bike-and-armstrong-birmingham-womens-bike_W0QQitemZ300236382617QQihZ020QQcategoryZ156524QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Alan said...

Go cheap. Unless you're racing, weight doesn't matter that much and you won't cry too much when someone steals it.

Alan said...

Oh, and do come on down to Texas... Your CHL is good here.

Anonymous said...

I'm a semi-serious cyclist having been riding over 20 years. I've already clocked over a 1k miles this year, including a Century (100 in one day).

Two points:

Don't get a department store bike (X-Mart, Costco, etc). They pretty much all suck and are assembled by idiots. Seriously ,they cost more than they're worth and can be unsafe.

Since this is likely your first adult bike and first one in many moons, go to a bike shop and make sure they help you find one that FITS. A poorly fitting bike won't encourage you to ride and may make it hard to ride more than a couple miles in comfort. Be honest about your intended purpose, any physical issues that would affect how you ride (thinking about your motorcycle accident here), etc. Don't let them sell you a racing bike if you just want to noodle around town, but don't get a beach cruiser if you plan to ride distances measured in miles.

A used bike is fine as long as it fits and is in decent shape. Don't go too cheap. A bike is an investment and you can easily get 20 years of service if just used on the road (offroad use shortens the life, natch).

Without knowing what kind of riding you want to do (road, offroad, etc), it's hard to recommend a specific type, but a previous poster's hint to avoid knobbies for road riding is spot on. A "Hybrid" bike is probably the best bet for recreational riding on pavement. Most hybrids can even handle casual offroading on dirt roads and paths.

Feel free to get in touch with me if you have specific questions. You should have my address from when we were talking about the CDs.

Chris

Roberta X remotely said...

My riding is around Broad Ripple, on the (paved) Monon trail, city streets and the (macadamized) Central Canal Towpath.

I'm riding a battered Giant city bike: 21 speeds (of which the top three are useful), tires neither skinny nor fat, front and seat suspension, plain pedals (kind of wanting rat-traps), and front and rear baskets: bicycle-as-transportation more than -as-hobby. Cruising speed is about 15 mph unladen.

So, experts, that's all Tam's got to keep up with (and me with her).

Bear in mind that our neighborhood is bike-friendly and bike-scale. It's practical to use them for supermarket trips and other errands and I often do.

R.X

Anonymous said...

Roberta,

I'd suggest something similar for Tamara. Hybrids (or whatever they are called these days) are great for relaxed, nonspecific biking. Something like the Trek 7000 would probably be ideal. http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/2008/bike_path/7000_series/7000/

Chris

Kristopher said...

If you want a grocery hauler, there is a lot to be said for an Xtracycle with a set of Schwalbe Big Apples or Fat Franks on it.

Unless you plan on joining the lycra road warrior set, fat tires rule for trouble free use.

Reno Sepulveda said...

That damn Xavier, I had good plans for my money till he posted that Retrovelo piece.