We approached several of our Partners to give you some helpful hints for buying bicycles. It’s a process that can seem intimidating, but is actually enjoyable, easy, and can result in one of the best purchases you’ve ever made. Follow these tips for a better bike buying experience, and to find the perfect bike for you!
Terrain, Use, and Frequency
“Before you enter the shop first consider what you will be using the bicycle for.” Our friends at Silk Road Cycles in Greenpoint suggest doing your research before committing. Are you “commuting, getting groceries, a road racer?” The type of activity you’ll be doing is important to consider. If you’re planning to tote a lot of things around, a fixed gear bicycle is likely not your best option, and if you’re just looking to do quick errands, a super expensive road bike is not the bike for you.
Our Partner Local Hub continues with this sentiment: “every bike has its purpose, be sure to choose the right bike for your intended riding. Some bikes are great for a ride around the neighborhood while others are meant to hit the gravel trails. Find the bike(s) that align with your purpose for riding.”
Sweet Pete’s reiterates: “If you're commuting every day on pretty smooth pavement for a long distance a mountain bike may not be the best idea. Are you planning on riding through the dirt paths in the local park? Maybe a road bike with skinny tires isn't the best choice. There are many, many different types of bike out there and there are certainly several that can meet most of your needs. Do some research and chat with your local bike shop (or a few) to figure out what type of bike you need.”
More things to consider: “Are you going only short distances and want to be able to easily look around? Then something with a nice upright position may work best. But if you're going longer distances or you're riding for fitness, maybe look at something that has a position that optimizes your efficiency. Remember that more efficient bikes not only allow you to ride faster, but also it's much easier to maintain speed making the bike feel light.” SP
A bicycle is an investment, and they come in a variety of price tags. Some can be as cheap as $199 (steer clear of these unless they’re second-hand or vintage) and some can be the same price as a new car.
“It’s easy to be attracted by low-priced options, but keep in mind that the cheaper components on these bikes can fail sooner, costing you money. Think about the features of the different price points of bikes you're looking at, and if you'll use them right away but also in a year or two years.” SP
“You get what you pay for. While you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg on a bike, you are buying a bike that can last you for the next 10-15 years or more. You might spend a little more to get a good bike but that quality will last.” LH
“Consider your budget…don’t forget the accessories. A lock to keep your bicycle safe and a helmet and lights to keep yourself safe.” SR
Bike Fit, Personalization, and Remember, Don’t be Intimidated and Have Fun!
“Many bike brands give you a great base, but once the bike is yours you have the freedom to add your own personal style that no one else has…Proper bike fit/size is important. Even the most comfortable bike can be uncomfortable if it’s not the right size for you.” LH
“A good sales person should be able to guide you in the direction of a bicycle that is right for you. Don’t feel intimidated! Everyone including your seasoned mechanic needed to learn how to pump their own tires at some point in their life.” SR
“Have fun! While bikes can have a utilitarian purpose, they can also be a fun alternative for getting around town. You see things you normally wouldn’t see in a car or on a bus. Look around, take things in and enjoy the ride.” LH
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