Bike Advice Needed

As I mentioned, I’ve got the IsoMan half coming up later this year. And to be honest, I think I need a new bike to help me complete it.

I do have a bike, but it’s at least 12 years old and only cost me about £200 at the time – so really not anywhere near top of the range, in fact it isn’t even on the range. To my eyes it looks like a decent road bike, but while doing a sprint tri at the back end of 2014 a proper cyclist slowed down as he passed me to say, ‘you’re brave doing it on that.”

The problem is, I know nothing about bikes – other than they can get very expensive.

I don’t want to spend a lot of money on a new one and as the bike section I’m doing is only 31 miles it doesn’t seem worth it. If I fall in love with cycling I’ll splash out then. For now though I just want something that is better than I have now.

My plan was to spend about £300-£500 on something second hand (so expecting to get something that was probably £800-£1,000 brand new), but I’ve no idea how to get a bargain, or even a bike that actually fits me and will be suitable for what I need. I’m not sure what size I am, or even how to measure myself. And do I need to get those special clippy shoes, or should I make do with the old-fashioned straps you put your toes in?

Some many questions.

So, cyclerist people, your help would be gratefully appreciated.



Filed under Cycling

2 responses to “Bike Advice Needed

  1. Buy this:

    Road.CC Bargain Roadbike Of The Year, also 5th in overall Bike Of The Year.

    Get down to your nearest Decathlon, sit on one, make sure it’s the right size for you, maybe consider going for some 28mm Continental GP 4 Seasons or Gatorskin tyres over the stock 25mm ones (more comfortable and therefore fast). Also consider purchasing a set of SKS Raceblade Long mudguards. Training in the UK is dire with a cold, wet, muddy arse.

    Buying second-hand is a total crapshoot, unless you know *exactly* what you are looking for, measurements-wise, and know how to check over a bike/wheels for damage – even damage that the one-old-lady-owner may be unaware of. and have the stomach for no warranty (the Triban has a lifetime frame warranty, and you’ll get a year for everything else)

    I have helped friends buy used bikes, but would only do so seeing it (and them on it) in the flesh first.

    Re pedals, go for Shimano SPD mountainbike-style ones (recessed, not protruding ‘road’ SPD-SL ones), but you’ll need to budget circa £100 for shoes + pedals. Or you can wear running shoes – in which case a set of these attached to a normal flat pedal will do you to hold your foot in place and let you pull up too:

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