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Kayak D.
user 11370843
Hollywood, FL
Post #: 19
Hi all. I am new to this group and hope to be joining you on some rides in the near future. I was on one of my fitness rides the other day when I met up with a road cyclist. He was complimentary about my pace and suggested I would do well to get a real road bike. Specifically, he noted (primarily) lack of clip peddles, weight of the forks and the upright riding position were less efficient. I ride a Gary Fisher Nirvana hybrid, stock except for handle grips.

So, now I am considering a new bike. My questions are these: How much difference will a new bike make (assuming I get a serious upgrade)? Do clip-in peddles make that much of a difference? I have previously considered a flat bar road bike? How much difference will a traditional road bike be from a flat bar set-up (pros/cons)? All that said, I know I cannot afford a brand new bike, so I will be looking for a good used one. I know I have to find one that is the right size. What else should I be looking for, and conversely, looking out for?

Thanks for any and all input.
Todd B.
user 14294747
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 3
Your hybrid would be great for some of these week night urban rides. But if you want to join an A group for a century ride I think most riders will recommend a more purpose built road bike. They say the clip in peddles are better because you can pull and push as you crank the peddles. And the symmetrical nature of the group works best for drafting when everyone has a similar setup. IMHO

I commute on a hybrid and I like to join group rides on the weekends with my Catrike 700 but I usually just stay in back of the pack never leading because they can’t draft me.
Kayak D.
user 11370843
Hollywood, FL
Post #: 21
Thanks Todd.

How about traps? I used to use them when in college. Will they make an appreciable difference?
Todd B.
user 14294747
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 4
I found this topic interesting but I was hoping someone with more experience might chime in with a little insight.
I use platforms now but I too am considering some clipless pedals and shoes. I've been commuting for a few years now and I never considered clipless pedals until I joined in on a few group rides and had them recommended by other riders. They swear by them and I have a hard time keeping up with them so I'm inclined to listen, however I've been on 4 group rides so far and I've seen 5 different falls solely contributed to those things. Each time it happened the riders couldn't get clipped or unclipped fast enough to break there fall.
If you are a spinner with high cadence no doubt you will benefit but if you are a power stroker I don't know.
Jon D
user 14012407
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 2
I switched from toe clips to spd clip ins about a year go, best thing I ever did. They do require some practice getting in and out if but once you figure it out no big deal.
Kayak D.
user 11370843
Hollywood, FL
Post #: 22
Yea, I worry about getting out of the clip ins fast enough while peddling around town. Also, I often ride somewhere where I will need shoes and don't want to be carrying another pair. Maybe toe clips would work for me. Not perfect, but an improvement over what I am doing now.

What about the difference in the bike itself? The wheels, riding position, lighter weight (no shocks!)??
Chris
user 2618416
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 13
The lower weight and lower rolling resistance of high pressure tires combined with the riding position will make a huge difference in your speed and you ability to maintain that speed. There are a lot of other factors that affect performance as well, but I think people tend to get hung up on these details a bit too much.

There are some great bargains out there and some seriously overpriced used bikes also, it's not always easy to tell them apart. Do you have a budget in mind yet?

Jon D
user 14012407
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 3
Yea, I worry about getting out of the clip ins fast enough while peddling around town. Also, I often ride somewhere where I will need shoes and don't want to be carrying another pair. Maybe toe clips would work for me. Not perfect, but an improvement over what I am doing now.

What about the difference in the bike itself? The wheels, riding position, lighter weight (no shocks!)??

There are pedals that have a clip in on one side and are a regular pedal on the other. I have those on my hybrid and they work great, when riding to the beach etc - flip flops and the regular pedal side - when on the Tuesday Lauderdale ride - bike shoes and the clip ins...

I started with a hybrid and as I started riding more/longer bought a road bike ... figure what your budget is and whether it's a road bike or general purpose need.. then shop accordingly.
Kayak D.
user 11370843
Hollywood, FL
Post #: 23
I was at a bike shop recently and looked at straight bar road bike, a Cannondale Quick.

Any opinions?
Todd B.
user 14294747
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Post #: 8
It's defiantly a nice bike for exercise and commuting but would be harder to stay with an A group (20+MPH for 60+ miles). Is that your goal? Or are you more concerned with comfort, durability, or utility. If staying in an A group is your goal I would get a more standard style road bike. You said you already have a Hybrid. If you don’t like the traditional road bike for whatever reason but still want to be fast you could also try some recumbent bikes. They are designed for comfort and some models are very fast (they hold a lot of speed records) because of their laid back seating position they have less wind resistance then upright bikes and the comfort level can only be matched by your recliner at home. Have you been to Atlantic Bicycle on Atlantic Blvd.? They have bikes you can test ride. I went there looking for a certain style bike then test road a Catrike and got hooked. I went there thinking I wanted a certain style bike and left with an entirely different opinion. It’s amazing how a test ride can change your view.
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