Many factors go into a successful outcome when you're purchasing a new bike. Below are a few things we think you should look for when you start "doing your research".
1. What kind of riding do you want to do? Experience level, and your approach to cycling are important. Are you motivated by weight loss, speed or fun? Are you looking for a social outlet? Where you live is important, because the riding out of your front door is the easiest to do. The more you refine these thoughts the better we can help guide you into the proper bike.
2. You'll need a good mechanic! Whether you end up riding a singlespeed cruiser or an electronic shifting road bike, you're gonna need an experienced bicycle mechanic. Knowing how to turn a wrench is the least important trait of a good mechanic. A good mechanic wants to understand you as a rider, willing to search for "hard to find" parts, and has an extensive riding background of his own. Well qualified shops/mechanics will most likely be qualified by Park Tool, the industry's top manufacturer of cycling specific tools.3. Sizing vs Fitting. The size of the bike you ride is critical for comfort, power generation, and the best overall riding experience. We pride ourselves on being knowledgeable in both bike sizing and bike fitting. Sizing a bike is NOT the same as fitting a bike, even though the terms are often used interchangeably. We have developed a process for sizing a bike and use the same process on everyone that comes thru the door, and the same fitting process going out the door. You can rest assured that we will dial you in. In most cases, where you buy your bike is more important than the bike you buy.
4. Buy what you like. You need to feel good about what you're buying, even if its not available. One small example, the color of the tires, and bar tape, can be a reflection of your personality. So, you may opt to change that out to give your new bike a bit of flare. We will happily do this for you. Other things such as shape of the handlebar (standard vs compact), seat, and perhaps wheels can, and sometimes need to be changed, to make the overall package that much better.
5. Demonstration. We see lots of people getting back into cycling after a long respite. Braking and shifting systems, and pedal systems, have changed dramatically over the years and you should get quality instruction on how to use them prior to delivery. Dont be afraid to ask questions, even if its a topic you dont understand.
6. Community. Outside of having the proper equipment, you may want to get plugged into a community of other cyclists. We're a little different in this respect as we discovered the need for a club environment for racers and recreationalists alike can merge together.
These are just a few points on what we feel makes up a successful outcome in a bike purchase. Cycling is more than a sport, its a lifestyle. We're here to help guide you, give us a call.