Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    8

    Big Girl needs suggestions!

    So, Im having some trouble looking for a bike! I was all but laughed out of one LBS [told that I should look into hitting the gym before looking into a new bike] and another kept trying to push bikes on me that felt fit for a 12yr old, I think this could be that they were built for women, and at 5'10" 280lbs...I'm not exactly built like a woman.

    What Im looking for is a bike that will be a good commuter, but mostly used on paved trails with some light mtn trails. Budget? $500 would be amazing, but doubtful. $600 is manageable with $700 being the absolute LIMIT!

    I am looking to buy new and local for warranty as well as service convenience/discounts.

    One bike I have looked into quite a bit is the Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc 29 [2013] - Opinions?

    Any suggestions or guidance on what I should be looking for would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Joules's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,350
    Couple things:
    1: never, ever, ever set foot in the shop that made fun of you again. Tell everyone (I do mean it, literally everyone you know or meet) what happened; anyone you meet that's a decent person won't do business with that shop either.

    2: forget about "women specific" bikes. Sounds like you already figured this out, but... The literature talks a lot about women have longer legs proportionally than guys, but if you look at the same size womens and mens bikes from trek or spec, the geometry isn't any different. The women's bikes are just pink and available in xs size.

    3: for the type of riding you describe, I don't see a big advantage to 29ers. Big wheels won't hurt anything either, except maybe your budget. 26ers are usually (but not always) cheaper.

    4: With big brands, in this price range, you are paying a lot for the sticker on the down tube. Compare the spec you listed to this:
    2013 Diamondback Overdrive Expert Mountain Bike - Performance Exclusive - Mountain Bikes
    $80 less and better specs all around.
    If you have a local performance, their "exclusive" GT and Diamondback bikes offer pretty good value (those brands are shells of their former selves, don't fool yourself that they are super high-end, but they do have better components than you'd get from a big brand at the same price).
    I think you'd be really happy with this:
    2013 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydraulic Mountain Bike - U.S. Exclusive - Mountain Bikes
    and it seems right in your price range.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Grip's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    102
    You need to go to a lbs and be fitted for a frame (probably a 17.5" or 18" frame")


    Once you know the size you need, test ride a bunch of bikes in that size within your budget.

    Most likely one of them will stand out as "better feeling" compared to the others you test rode.

    Buy the one that feels best to you.

    Don't forget to adjust everything to you on each bike. (Seat height mostly, on new bikes the brake levers should be adjusted already)

    YouTube is a great source for beginners.


    Specialized, trek, Cannondale, and giant are all great brands that most LBS will carry.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    8
    Joules, I'd love to spread the word about the shop and never have to deal with them again! The only problem with that is...its one of only 2 shops, and the most popular with the most availability. Also worth mentioning is that I do agree that I'd be very happy with the Avalanche! Im loving just looking at it! But...the other shop doesn't carry a single GT. Small town problems I guess...

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: KevinGT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    862
    Their suggestion to "hit the gym" before buying a bike is absurd. Buy a bike INSTEAD of hitting the gym.
    I live with fear and danger every day. And on the weekends she lets me go mountain biking.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    70
    Was this personal a sales person or someone in management. If someone said that to me, damn sure bet I'd be asking for management.

    If its a sales guy complain and tell them to give you a discount!

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Bethany1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    659
    I'm female 5'10 and 210 so a 17.5 or 18 inch frame will probably work. Nearest LBS is 20 miles away but he's hit and miss. Anything else a little further out that you can go too? I have to go about 1.5 hours away to get into other stores.

    Any LBS that comments on your weight isn't worth shopping with.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Settertude's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    1,341
    I agree with this, as it was my thought as well. Owner/manager would surely want to know if an employee treated a customer like that.
    They need to know.
    I wish you the best with your new goals.
    You've already gotten good advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by 208Ryder View Post
    Was this personal a sales person or someone in management. If someone said that to me, damn sure bet I'd be asking for management.

    If its a sales guy complain and tell them to give you a discount!

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: supersedona's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    451
    I'll third the manager comment. A person who comments like that to a customer is totally forgetting the points of being a bike shop employee. 1.) Sell bikes, regardless of who the money comes from(tall, short, light etc) and 2.) Serve the customer to continue business. It is after all a fitness based business and historically I have seen the most dedicated long term fit people come from a similar start(in fact one is in her 4th year as an avid XC racer now from being a medium sized clydsdale at the start. Happy hunting
    '93 Giant Sedona ATX custom
    '93 Giant Sedona AtX aero-edition
    '73 Schwinn Suburban
    '95 Fuji Suncrest

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    8
    Well thanks everyone! I actually took the time out to e-mail the place with a few questions that went unanswered due to the fact that I walked out and I got a great response!

    The person who emailed me back was the manager and along with apologizing offered to set up a time to meet with me personally to get all sized up and test some bikes out. Also, let me know what exactly they have in stock that is comparable to the three bikes I asked about [none in stock] so I could do a little research on my own prior to meeting with him. Thankfully though, if in the end I still have my heart set on one of the 3 out of stock ones...he'd be happy to special order! Oh ya, and a $50 gift certificate good for anything in the store.

    Thats more like it!

    Its kinda sad actually that I've been put up with comments like that for so long that it hardly even phases me. This is why Im making the changes I am! And Im getting a damn bike whether the guy behind the counter sees fit or not!

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    70
    Quote Originally Posted by ShayzeLee View Post
    Well thanks everyone! I actually took the time out to e-mail the place with a few questions that went unanswered due to the fact that I walked out and I got a great response!

    The person who emailed me back was the manager and along with apologizing offered to set up a time to meet with me personally to get all sized up and test some bikes out. Also, let me know what exactly they have in stock that is comparable to the three bikes I asked about [none in stock] so I could do a little research on my own prior to meeting with him. Thankfully though, if in the end I still have my heart set on one of the 3 out of stock ones...he'd be happy to special order! Oh ya, and a $50 gift certificate good for anything in the store.

    Thats more like it!

    Its kinda sad actually that I've been put up with comments like that for so long that it hardly even phases me. This is why Im making the changes I am! And Im getting a damn bike whether the guy behind the counter sees fit or not!

    Good, That's more like it!

    Im 6'3 and 345#'s. If some smart mouthed sales guy told me that. My Sarcasm would of kicked in and told him "No, Sh!T that's why I'm buying a bike idiot!"

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Bethany1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    659
    We wanna see your bike when you get it in. SO glad the manager fixed things for you.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    87
    Happy to hear the manager trying to make it right. Awesome that you are motivated to get on a bike. Try out as many as you can and pay more attention to what feels the best rather than the spec sheet. If there are things you don't like..grips,saddle, ect change them rather then live with it. My wife recently bought a bike and ended up with a completely different bike than she had been looking at online. She test rode a bunch and it felt best, she just started and is already doing 15 mile rides with a couple climbs. She had never had a proper fitting quality bike before. It's made a huge difference.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    8
    Quote Originally Posted by 208Ryder View Post
    Good, That's more like it!

    Im 6'3 and 345#'s. If some smart mouthed sales guy told me that. My Sarcasm would of kicked in and told him "No, Sh!T that's why I'm buying a bike idiot!"
    Im a very outspoken person and believe me, if I didn't think the need for good rapport would far outlast this one persons employment...I woulda gone all sorts of single white female on him! But the fact still remains, this is a very small town, and even though the last time I owned a bike was over a decade ago...guess where that was purchased? And the one before that? Over 20 years since ditching my training wheels its still one of only two stores within a 3hr drive.

    All that being said, some seem to be under the impression that this will be my first bike or first non BBS bike. This isn't the case, I actually used to race locally when I was a kid/teen. My first "Big Girl Bike" [meaning without training wheels, I was far more fit back then] was a Trek. My last? A pretty pricy [to a 13yr olds standards] Cannondale that was used for all of one season before school and just being a teenage girl got in the way. This was obviously during the "Daddy, Can I?" part of life when the parentals controlled the finances, and I got what was given! Thats why 10yrs and 200lbs later I have so many questions. Not only have so many things changed, but back in the day...all I had to worry about was which color to get! Make and Model had already been chosen for me!

    PS- Just found out that my last bike, over 1k was simply given away in exchange for the mowing of our tiny little lawn. The equivalent of about 10 bucks back then. This fact is incredibly irritating as had I had access to things like Craigslist back then...my teenage self woulda been rolling in the dough! Jus' Sayin'....I clearly grew up in the wrong decade

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    605
    Let me guess....kids working the LBS right? Teenagers 16-26 I am guessing.....If you can find a LBS that has someone that has been not only riding and selling bikes for 25 plus years, that is your place. For value on a 29er and your price range, I would strongly consider a Giant or Diamond Back. And Woman specific bikes are a waste except for the seat. I know what it is like....I was 424 I am now 285. What kind or riding will you be doing? Cement, light trail.....heavy trail? In some cases it might be best to get a mid level for whatever in case you want to change out to some slicks.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: tysonnemb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    857
    Glad the shop did the right thing after the fact. That was terribly wrong what they did. Good for you for finding a fun way to keep in shape. Mountain biking is great for that. You forget your actually exercising, and you get to see beautiful sights you otherwise couldn't.

    As far as the bike, I actually believe there is a difference with women's specific. But as a beginner, it isn't necessary. Just go for the value. But the seat will need to be changed (some shops will swap right there) most likely. And the standard (men's) handlebars will be wider than you need most likely. Easy fix. Shop may be willing to trim them a bit and move in your grips and what not. Then when you are more in to the sport, a nice women's specific bike from a big brand will make a difference
    Don't rule out used either though. I've had quite a few friends down here buy new bikes for their wives, who decided that biking wasn't for them, and turn around and sell a practically new bike for quite a loss.
    “Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world.”
-Grant Petersen

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    33
    Kind of unrelated, but I believe applicable...
    I don't know how often you hit the scales to watch your weight, but don't be surprised if when you start riding regularly you actually gain a few pounds before you start seeing weight loss. This happened to me when I started riding 10 years ago. I felt fitter (lighter?) but the scales said different. I mentioned it to a friend of mine that actually works at a gym and she told me it was normal. She said the reason was I was gaining muscle as well as losing fat and muscle is heavier than fat.
    After a short while as the muscles get built up the fat will start coming off at a faster rate and the weight will come off.
    Good advice in the previous posts about dealing with the manager.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    54
    Well, in the end, you are being very diplomatic about the situation. Myself, I would have made the 3 hour drive somewhere else had someone given me that treatment. Why do you think I'm in here looking to purchase a means of exercise jackazz? I have come forth to make the purchase that will elevate me to my training and weight goal. Your job is to help me find that vehicle. If I ask you for training advice, feel free to give it to me.

    Sorry, rant over. Good for you for choosing an exciting, at times painful, means to reach a fitness goal you have in mind. As others have said, throw some pix up when you get your bike and get out there and get to riding. I have dropped nearly 10lbs in just a few weeks of being a rider, only riding 1 or 2 days a week!! Best part? I haven't felt like I was exercising once!!

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    7
    I'm glad the manager responded positively and is working with you. I know you're looking at mountain bikes but you also said you want it for commuting & paths.

    I had a Trek 7.5 FX. Cost $700 in 2008. I weigh around 350lbs and never once had trouble with the bike. The wheels stayed true and I was able to ride 30+ miles in a single ride. The biggest factor IMHO is the quality of the wheel. That Trek had those rims with only 26 spokes and my father was shocked they held up.

    In my infinite wisdom I sold the Trek and 'downsized' to a Fuji Absolute 3.0 for $330. I've had spoke issues and and eventually replaced the back wheel. So you obviously get what you pay for.

    If you're looking for a commuter / path bike, seriously look into the Trek FX line, you can get the next model down in the $500-600 range and still have a great bike. If it can hold my 350lbs, it can certainly hold you. Just about every brand has a 'fitness' bike category. I would look into it. They're much faster than mountain bikes, but obviously no trail riding.

  20. #20
    Trail Prospector
    Reputation: Flyin_W's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    2,664
    Lots of good advice given here. At 5'10" I'd encourage you to look more closely at 29ers.
    Seems that some LBS' are pushing the 650B trend onto those who may fit much better on the bigger wheels.

    Last week, my 15 y/o neighbor pulled into my driveway all proud of his new Trek hybrid with a suspension fork,
    and I was shocked that the LBS had sold him a 650B - he's already 6'5"!!
    Ride on,
    The best is the one you want to ride most often..

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    34
    See if you can find a Rockhopper or similar 29er - maybe a Hardrock - in a 19" frame size. 36 spoke rear wheels are a bit stronger than their 32 spoke counterparts and the Rockhopper comes standard with one. I had a 36 spoke, generator-hub-equipped front wheel built for mine but that may or may not be overkill for you depending on the type of riding you will be doing. I view the extra strength as insurance.

    Tires I run most often for general purpose trail and commuting are Serfas Drifters (2.0" width) or Specialized Captains (also 2.0" width - both ends of the bike).

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    153
    Most any bike will work for you, buy what _fits_ you best is most important so that you will ride it. Also a bike that appeals to you in general.

    Unless you plan on truly doing dirt with lots of ruts, roots etc, consider any suspension options carefully. If you will be 80% or more on roads or hard paths, I would recommend no suspension.

    Tire size is up to you, personally I didn't want a super rigid ride due to varied terrain and wanted larger tires. For varied terrain, something at least 35mm wide is a good idea. Varied meaning dirt paths, stone/gravel roads etc. I have 700x40's on the bike I have which is basically a rigid frame mountain bike and I've been really happy for the combo of street, paths, and dirt roads/trails that I ride.

    The 'hybrid' bikes are great for this, Cannondale Quick, Giant Escape, Trek 7.x series, Kona Dew etc. Flat bars, upright seating and skinner wheels/tires than a standard mountain bike...also less knobbed treads generally.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    8

    Got my bike!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bethany1 View Post
    We wanna see your bike when you get it in. SO glad the manager fixed things for you.
    Big Girl needs suggestions!-cannondale.jpgBig Girl needs suggestions!-cannon2.jpgBig Girl needs suggestions!-cannon3.jpg

    Ended up going into the LBS looking to special order the GT Avalanche, but after looking around walked out having purchased a Cannondale Trail Seven. Im more than happy with it! Its everything I was looking for!

Similar Threads

  1. Im asking for my girl
    By Wyrd in forum Women's Lounge
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-26-2013, 03:52 AM
  2. To the girl who...
    By bigrigmig in forum Arizona
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 06-20-2012, 07:09 PM
  3. Met a girl...
    By damnitman in forum Fat Bikes
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 09-12-2011, 06:51 PM
  4. What's a girl to do?
    By screampint in forum Passion
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 03-05-2011, 04:04 PM
  5. Girly-girl vs out door girl
    By oldbroad in forum Women's Lounge
    Replies: 72
    Last Post: 09-04-2005, 06:42 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •