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Tips for Purchasing Your First Road Bike
Whether you’re a seasoned bike rider looking to purchase your first serious machine or just starting out as a cyclist, buying a bike can be overwhelming. There are so many options and considerations. Below you’ll find five handy tips to help you make the right choice when buying your first road bike.
1. Buy NewWhile you may be able to pick up a ‘bargain’ online or via the second hand classifieds, your cheap score might end up costing you in the long run. A professional bike shop will ensure that the bike you buy is the right fit for your budget, your size and your riding needs and can give you tips and introductions into the cycling community. A lot of shops like 99 Bikes and other reputable suppliers now offer 30 day exchanges and price beat guarantees which offers additional peace of mind that you might not get from a private or online seller.
2. Wear Riding Clothes to Buy Your BikeEven if you’re stopping in to see the shop staff after work or between running errands on the weekend, it’s crucial that you are fitted for your new bike and do any test rides in the clothes you’ll typically wear riding. Your clothing does make a difference to how the bike needs to be set up for you, so make sure you take your cycling clothes to change into in store (most shops have fitting rooms) before you start looking at the bikes.
3. Aesthetics Come SecondThere’s nothing wrong with wanting a certain look or colour for your new bike, but don’t let how it looks cloud your judgement of what makes a bicycle right for you. Functionality and fit needs to come first, fashion second. You can funk up your clothing and accessories if the bike itself looks a little plainer than you wanted it to.
4. Know Your Riding GoalsBe realistic with what you’ll be doing with your bike. While you may hope to compete in a triathlon ‘one day’ or do an endurance circuit if your bike will predominantly be used for weekend social rides and daily work commutes, give the staff at the bike shop an honest overview of where and how you’ll be using your bike so they can make sure that what you buy will suit you now and into the future.
5. Budget Beyond The BikeMake sure you are prepared to spend what you need to on accessories and tools for your bike as well. While the bicycle itself will be your biggest investment, there are some essential basics like tyre pumps and helmets that you’ll need too. Make sure you also talk about ongoing maintenance with the staff so you can keep your bike in good condition.
There are many things to take into consideration when it comes to buying your first road bike, but with a good understanding of where and how you’ll ride and some professional assistance you’ll be able to get the right bicycle for your needs.
What advice would you give to someone looking to buy their first road bike?