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Discussion Starter #1
I've been wanting to buy a road bike for a while now but am not sure which brands I should be looking at. I have a Trek hybrid right now and do like the Trek bikes but I've been looking at some Specialized and Cannondales as well. I'm also a poor college student so I've been checking Craigslist a lot looking for deals... thinking I might find some good ones in the off season. I'm still kind of a newbie so any help/ advice is appreciated :)
 

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Check your LBS for deals on used or last years' models to save money. I know of one person who got an $800 Giant for like $450 just cause it was last year's model and the shop wanted to get rid of it. A lot of places I know of also do swaps. So if you're willing to let go of your hybrid they can put the trade in value towards your new bike. One place here in Ohio will even give you more than what it's worth during swaps, though it's only like 5% every little bit helps.

As for internet bikes, I wouldn't say it's a complete no-no (others may disagree), you just have to know what size you need and what condition it's in. You can either hit the jackpot with them or you'll miss completely.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
never thought about swapping the hybrid out but that might be the best money-saving idea. I'll have to look around and see if any shops in my area do that. Thanks for the advice!
 

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Two skinny J's
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I'm curious, why do you want a road bike?
 

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It would help if you could let us know how much you are looking to spend. All the brands you've mentioned have decent entry level bikes. The most important thing is making sure you get a bike that fits you. The best deal in the world is no deal if you can't ride it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My uncle actually sparked my interest in road bikes. He took me out for a ride one day and i fell in love with the ease and speed. I love to explore and will do upwards to 100 miles in a day on my hybrid and with a road bike I imagine I will be able to cover more ground in less time. I'd love to join a cycling group too. I also tool around with snowmobiles and jet skis so I'm a bit of a speed junkie... lots of reasons I want one! haha

As far as price I'd like to stay between $600 and $800 which I imagine might be hard to find with cannondale and specialized bikes but I am definitely open to looking at other brands... those are just the two that I've heard friends talk about
 

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Just Plain Bitter!
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The first thing you need to do is find out what the correct size bike you need is. Whether you do this by test riding bikes or having someone fit you to a bike is your choice. Road bikes "fit" differently than Hybrids and because they fit differently size does matter. Do not let anyone sell you by S,M or L. A lot of fit can be adjusted by stem length/angel and seat position but try and keep this to a minimum. Once you have found what size you need you can get on with buying a bike. Your budget puts you in the lower end of the spectrum and as people have recommende look at last years models of Giant. Fuji, GT and the like. Look at Performance bicycles, they tend to discount deeply on last years models of Fuji, and GT as well as their house brand Scattante.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the advice Duende54. Sounds like fit is the most important thing I need to consider in my purchase. Looks like I'm going to have a busy spring checking out all my LBS!
 

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Yesterday tired old man, Today retired old man
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Spring will bring many looking for a new bike. I like to shop now for a good deal, new models, are out so there might be a good supply of leftovers, besides not a lot of walkins this time of year.
My¢¢
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yeah, the boyfriend keeps telling me the same thing... maybe I should start looking at shops around my school. Thanks for the advice, wild!
 

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Some LBS have used bikes as well, and they are often well tuned and repaired by the LBS themselves . This may help with the budget issues
 

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greenhorn
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Ever find a bike? Or what size you were looking for?
My son just bought a new Specialized Allez, so he is selling his 2007 Specialized Allez....58cm.
All stock, less than 3000 miles on the bike.
Nice paint, shifts and rides great.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
No, i have not found a bike yet...
I went to my LBS and they guy sized me out on a Trek Lexa and I was about a 56cm or equivalent to a medium on a Giant. So I think your son's might be a little big but I'd have to try it out. Where are you guys located? And how much is he asking?
 

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greenhorn
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No, i have not found a bike yet...
I went to my LBS and they guy sized me out on a Trek Lexa and I was about a 56cm or equivalent to a medium on a Giant. So I think your son's might be a little big but I'd have to try it out. Where are you guys located? And how much is he asking?
Yeah, without sitting on it you never know. I am in Pittsburgh, PA....and he's pretty flexible on price cause he just bought a 2011 Specialized Allez he liked this one so much.
I would guess $550 would take it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
ooh boy that's quite a hike from Chicago and I would definitely need to try it out... Thanks for the offer though!
 

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Yesterday tired old man, Today retired old man
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One outher thing I forgot to say was shop Tuesday to Thursday, the shop will have more time for you and I found I can deal better with not so many around.
My ¢¢
 

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Discussion Starter #17
One outher thing I forgot to say was shop Tuesday to Thursday, the shop will have more time for you and I found I can deal better with not so many around.
My ¢¢
ooh, good tip wild, thanks! I went this past Monday and it was pretty deserted so I got to hop on the trainer with a couple of bikes and hit the path out in front of the shop too. I love how helpful the people at my LBS are.. they really know their stuff!
 
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