seeking bike advice — Brooklynian

seeking bike advice

I'm looking for a bike for general tooling around on paved roads, nothing fancy needed. I just don't want it to be a piece of garbage. Definitely needs to have multiple gears and handbrakes, but other than than I'm not too picky.

I'm not living in Brooklyn (sigh) or in any place where Craigslist would be of help. Can anyone suggest a brand or location (such as dog box store) or specs or anything I should be looking for?



  • Giant and Trek make some good ones for around $400.
  • Step 1 - don't worry about it so much. Most of the new bikes are pretty decent, as long as you have someone that can help you pick out the right style based upon your riding habits and environment.

    Have an idea of how much you're comfortable spending. Find a local bike shop that doesn't skeeve you out when you walk in the door. Let the salesperson know how much you want to spend and be ready for him/her to step you up (you can spend an awful lot on a bike, it adds up quickly). In general, Shimano shifting equipment is a safe bet and the dominant player for bikes a few hundred bucks and up.

    If you can't find a smaller, local store, look for something like a Performance Bikes. No matter who you buy from, be sure that there's at least a years worth of tune-ups included.

    Brands - it's hard to go wrong with the big guys: Trek, Specialized, Giant, Cannondale, etc, etc, etc.

    You may or may not get a few useful tidbits from regional sections of cycling forums, like
  • The really important issue is whether the bike fits you properly. You don't want a frame that is too large or too small for you. If the store needs to order something to fit you, rather than selling you whatever they happen to have in stock, that is a good thing.

    It's really important to be able to trust the store and its salespeople.

    If you expect to bring the bike back to Brooklyn, then consider getting a hybrid, I.e. a cross between a "road" or racing bike and a mountain bike. I find my hybrid much more comfortable on our chewed-up, pothole-ridden streets than my previous racing-type bike.
  • The only advice to all cyclists; Stay out of New York City and stay off Long Island. Bicycles are illegal in all of New York City and on Long Island. You can not ride on either the street, alley, or sidewalk. And in fact, starting in June 2011, the NYPD, as well as the Nassau and Suffolk county Sheriff's departments will crack down on all cycling and will begin arresting all cyclists even for first time offenses.
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