1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    What size tube do I need for a Giant Escape 1? What else to buy?

    I'm not sure what tube size I would need and I'm looking to buy everything now. I figure this is an easy answer but I can't seem to figure it out. If I had to guess it would be 700x32 but I can't really find a tube specifically for that on Amazon. Not sure if it's the right one.

    I want to buy several things and want to get the best deals on them.

    Here's what I'm looking to buy:
    27oz Stainless Steel Klean Kanteen (to be used as my waterbottle, with or without my bike. I'm leaning towards getting the Stainless Steel color so that no paint is scraped off by the waterbottle cage. It matches my Giant Escape 1. I might've got red otherwise.)

    Waterbottle Cage (Leaning towards the Topeak Modula 2. Not really sure if these cages will be able to fit a 27oz Klean Kanteen either. I read reviews that said the 18oz fit snugly. I can get a 27oz for the same price though and I'd rather have a bigger size.

    Rear saddle bag - Thinking of getting a medium size Avenir bag. I don't think i'll need to hold too much and Medium should be good enough. I don't want to have any unnecessary bulk.

    Bike lock - Something like the U-Lock and cable lock duo. Not sure if I even trust anyone enough to leave my bike anywhere for too long to begin with. I'll probably carry these in a bookbag when I need to bring them. I don't plan on installing a rack at this point so a bookbag will do.

    Floor pump - I want to get a good pump. Can I get a good pump for cheap at Walmart? Is this something you should get at a bike shop? I just want something affordable to pump some air in my tires.

    Hand pump - I guess I'll attach this to my bike along with the bottle cage. In case I get a flat it will be on hand. Or maybe it'd be small enough to fit in the bag even, hopefully.

    Tools - Not really sure what tools I will NEED. I don't want to buy an unnecessary kit with all this junk. I was leaning towards buying this roll-up kit on Amazon but not sure if it's really necessary. I would carry the one multi-tool along with me, and possibly some other things even. I'd rather buy things one by one though if I'm going to have a bunch of tools that will be useless to me. I could just buy one multi-tool instead of a roll-up kit.

    Helmet - Not sure what to get. Was leaning towards getting a Giro Indicator if I can get one.

    I'll need a tire gauge to check my tires pressure. Should I buy a pump that does that for me or just get the small pencil gauge?

    Chain Lubricant - I guess I'll find something that's good.

    Headlight and taillight - required by law if riding at night. I need a bell too supposedly but I don't think that's enforced really, so I might not bother.

    Spare tube

    Bike computer- I'll probably buy one. I figure I should be able to get one cheap.

    Any input on this? Any bit of information on any of these things will help a great deal. And if you have anything else to suggest. I will mostly be riding around town, locally on paved roads.

  2. #2
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    The Giant website says it has Giant S-X2 w/ Puncture Protection, 700x32 on it stock for tires. The tubes usually fit multiple sizes so you won't neccessarily see just that size writting on it. There will be a range. Just search 700x32 tube on Amazon they will come up. Just pay attention if you need a presta or a schrader valve stem. Instead of the bottle and the other stuff I'd get a Camelbak then you can carry your pump, tools, lock, etc. in there as well as have your water. That's just my advice. As far as floor pump goes I think one is just as good as another. Your pump that you buy to carry keep in mind the smaller it is the more pumping you will do. Some people opt for the CO2 cartridges instead. I prefer the pump....mine has a gauge on it. Most people don't really care about the gauge and just go on how the tire feels to them. I'm a little ocd about what my pressure is exactly. Helmets, I say buy what looks good to you. If you are wearing one I'm sure that's the most important thing. The more you spend the lighter they usually are and will tend to have better ventilation. Good luck. If you have an REI close to you go there and sign up as a member. It will pay off in the long run and the people there will help you make decisions. Plus the return policy is to die for so if you decide a month later you don't like the way your helmet is fitting, take it back and they don't care.

  3. #3
    CSC
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    Online=cheap

    I'd go with a Cateye bike computer...might not be the cheapest, but they are a really good product, and I have had mine for at least 5 years, and the battery still hasn't died on me. Also, the pickup sensor is well made...I have a friend with another brand (Sigma?) and it needs to be re-positioned quite often.
    Lights: Cateye for the front, Blackburn on the back. Planet bike makes good ones, and I might stay away from the cheap ones here, too, because they tend to not be as robust as ones that cost a bit more. They need to be rater resistant, too.

    Floor pump: One is not as good as another. Depending on your tube, you might need a presta valve connector. I have a Topeak floor pump, and the heavier base keeps it standing up, the valve connector is reversible (for both schrader and presta valves), and has a good pressure gauge. Also, the valve screws onto the tube valve, which means you don't loose a bunch of air when you connect/disconnect the pump.

    The cheap floor pumps tend to be light, and they tip over all the time, which is annoying...and they can be flimsy.

    Hydration: Stick with the water bottle, and buy a under-the-seat tool pouch. On a road/commuter bike, a bottle works just as well...and less maintenance. However, I have a cammelbak, and like it for mountain biking, but I wouldn't wear it on the road...gets hot.

    REI is good for advice...often times you can find cheaper prices for stuff online. My advice: get the membership (good to have), but use the store to try stuff on and get ideas. Once you know what you want/need, go home, hop online, and order from there.

    Tools: get a small multi-tool for the seat pouch. A pedal wrench is a good idea...if you see yourself switching pedals with some regularity. Everything else is usually cheaper at a hardware store.

    Lock: Kryptonite is a good brand.

    Chain lube is a personal thing...haha. Everyone has their own special process. Chances are, Tri-Flo would be just fine for you. Cheap, too.

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