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  1. #1
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    6'4" 380 Newbie What Bike is Right

    I'm a newbie, so please don't overwhelm me with stuff I can't understand. Will anything work off the rack, like those big bikes by zinn? Should I custom? I'm really worried about breaking spokes. One guy told me get custom wheels, that's where the stress is?

    Help. My budget is under 2g.

    Obviously, I'm trying to lose weight.

    Big Boy

  2. #2
    Clydeosaur
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    I'm up there in weight as well although I'm about 2" shorter than you. I'm riding a mostly stock redline d440 (29" wheels, 8 speed). I have a week or so of road riding and I've been taking it on trails recently. It's holding up well so far.

    The only changes I'm making are adjusting the fit/comfort of the cockpit: ergon gp-1 grips, I bought a different saddle off of ebay, and the local shop is putting a shorter stem on. I might play around with different bars but hopefully the stem/saddle swap will make it very comfortable. As it is it's rideable now, I'm just looking to dial it in some more.

    Here's a link to the bike ($600 range)

    http://www.redlinebicycles.com/adultbikes/d440.html

    Many people are also pleased with the GT Peace 29er. If you have a performance bike shop near you it could be a pretty good deal as well ($550 price range). The website only lists small & medium frames in stock though.

    http://www.performancebike.com/shop/...tegory_ID=3050

    I haven't really looked at new 26" bikes recently so can't help there.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    BIG and Bald
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    With your height, most people will tell you to go for a 29'er. I personally still prefer to stay with 26" wheels but I'm only 6 ft tall....Anyways....

    If you are looking for a hardtail bike (a bike that only has a shock up front) I strongly recommend the Kona Hoss. It's name says it all. It has held up under my #375lbs since late 2005 without any problem at all and I'm not always your casual, take a stroll type of rider. There are many more "thumbs up" stories to back this up. The only thing I had to do for the initial purchase was trade in for a beefier fork (front shock) but that was on the '06 model. I'm planning on buying a new one this year as soon as the 2010 models roll out and turning my current Hoss into a knock about commuter or what have you.

    If you decide to go with a bike with 29" wheels (dubbed a 29'er) there's no doubt you'll find excellent options for $2000. I'm just saying that 29'ers are not for everybody and you might feel right at home on 26" wheels. No matter what, test ride as many bike and as many times as you choose to before making the decision. Any shop worth their salt won't give you any grief over this. The 1st bike purchase is always the most important. It has the potential to hook you for life or make you tuck your tail and run away forever. hehe

    Help us out a bit and tell us what bike brands are offered in your area. Also, what type of riding are you planning on doing? Do you eventually want to ride aggressively on rough trails? Are you just going "putter" around the neighborhood and smooth roads?
    [SIZE="2"][SIZE="3"]Eat to Live[/SIZE][/SIZE]...[SIZE="3"]not the other way around[/SIZE]

  4. #4
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    Get 29 wheels when you have lost a bit more. To flexy for big dudes IMHO.
    Can't go wrong with then Hoss. Buy it from an established dealer who will take the time to build it right with extra attention to the wheels.
    Good Luck. You will be amazed the difference cycling will make to your life!

  5. #5
    mtbr member
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    Quote Originally Posted by writer4912
    I'm a newbie, so please don't overwhelm me with stuff I can't understand. Will anything work off the rack, like those big bikes by zinn? Should I custom? I'm really worried about breaking spokes. One guy told me get custom wheels, that's where the stress is?

    Help. My budget is under 2g.

    Obviously, I'm trying to lose weight.

    Big Boy
    Depends on the type of riding you are doing. I started when I was at about 360 pounds, down to just under 300 now.

    Typically a hardtail is going to be stiffer and more efficient for a heavy weight rider. I for one however can't stand riding a hardtail, this is especially true because I am a heavier rider and like to ride trails that aren't smooth.

    I am currently riding a full suspension Banshee Chaparral, it is a very overbuilt frame, but the leverage ratio is not great for heavier riders. If you have the ability to up the budget a little I would recommend going with something like a Santa Cruz Nomad with a coil shock and an air or air/coil fork.

    Heavy riders are especially tough on wheels, hubs, cranks, pedals and brakes. I am not sure that there is a bike that you can buy completely stock which will be great for a heavy rider. If a bike is really overbuilt and designed to take abuse, it typically has awkward geometry and too much travel for a trail bike, if a bike is a good typical trail bike then it is going to have lighter weight components that are not as durable as heavier ones.

    I have no experience with Zinn, but they sound like good bikes.

    Some other full suspension bikes that you could look into are the Knolly Endorphin or Delirium-T, Transition Preston FR and Santa Cruz Nomad. All of these will cost more than 2k brand new, if you can swing it you should go for it though and get a custom build with beefy wheels and suitable suspension. If not you could always look used, I could see you finding a used Nomad for around $2k.

    If you want to buy new and stick to less than $2k then I think that hardtails are your best option. You could go with a Santa Cruz Chameleon or a Banshee Scirocco, both very nice hardtails for a heavy rider. The Hoss is another good pick, however the stock wheels and fork are not the greatest, but it is an easy way to get a decent bike for about $1000. You could always see if your local shop is willing to swap out the wheels and fork for you.

  6. #6
    Mouth-Breather / Huffer
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    Quote Originally Posted by FireBallKY
    Help us out a bit and tell us what bike brands are offered in your area. Also, what type of riding are you planning on doing? Do you eventually want to ride aggressively on rough trails? Are you just going "putter" around the neighborhood and smooth roads?
    With a $2,000 budget, you have many, many options. If you can, the information FireBallKY requested would be very helpful in narrowing your options to a few prime candidates that will really fit your needs/wishes.

    I was on a very meager budget and ended up with a GT Peace 9r Multi. It's steel with a rigid front fork and no rear suspension... but I love it. Love it! That being said, if I had $2,000, I probably would have looked at the Salsa El Mariachi and added a really robust front shock when my physical conditioning improved enough to really hit some serious single track. If I had been hankerin' for a full suspension bike, I might have looked at the Salsa Dos Niner (a softail, really...) or the Voodoo Canzo frames and had them built to my specs.

    But, hey, that's just me. I can't personally attest to the clyde-worthiness of either the Salsa bikes or the Canzo, however. I can, fortunately, tell you that my cheapy GT Peace 9r has survived a few nasty wrecks already and, other than a bent seat post and a torn saddle, came out unscathed and wanting more!

    Other bikes that clydes are having success with include - but are not limited to - the Surly Karate Monkey, Redline D440 and D460. A lot of guys may suggest going with a single speed, but that was more committment than I could muster for my re-entry into the sport. I'm happy with my 3x9. A 1x9 might have been doable, however.

    The key, regardless of the bike, is just to saddle up and ride. And, of course, to have fun.

    Oh, and at the moment, I'm running just shy of 6'2" and 290#.
    Last edited by dog.gone; 06-12-2009 at 06:05 PM.

  7. #7
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    I plan on doing trails, but no jumps. This is fitness biking for me. All the major brands of bikes are in South Florida.

  8. #8
    Clydeosaur
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    Quote Originally Posted by writer4912
    I plan on doing trails, but no jumps. This is fitness biking for me. All the major brands of bikes are in South Florida.
    South florida here as well. I got my redline at jim's bicycles in deerfield - he's right across the street from quiet waters. He carries kona, cannondale, & redline as well as somw others I think.

    Shoot me a pm if you have questions.

  9. #9
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    Thanks to everyone who answered. I have a lot to research.
    Big Boy

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