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Entry level triathlon bike recs?
#1
I'm a total newb. Going to do my first triathlon in the summer. Hopefully 90 minute hard Peloton rides I've been doing will keep me from dying during the ride stage.

Any recommendations for a decent inexpensive bike I can use for triathlon but also on recreational rides with my kids? Thanks!
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#2
Road bike =/= Cheap.

Even if you can find a budget one, it will likely be heavier than entry level brand bikes and will have cheaper components even.

Your best bet is to check out Craigslist and Facebook Market Place for local sales.

Make sure you lubricate the pulleys before you ride out. If it has a 2-piece crank, take off the crank arms slap it out with a rubber mallet. Slapping some grease in the cups and on the axle and fasten it back together. Torque spec for the crank arm bolt is 14~16nm. This will dramatically improve the smoothness of the ride. Get some cone wrenches and overhaul the hubs while you're at it. Rear normally takes a 15mm and the front typically uses 13mm. Undo the rear wheel hub from the nondrive side and pull it out from the drive side. You can just put it back together reverse and have a good chance of not messing up the dishing. If it has a quick release, make sure there's about 5mm of axle on each side when you screw it back together.
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#3
All I can say is that it's worth investing in a comfortable road/triathlon bike - you won't regret it. In your case, a solid second-hand road bike will work well. You can buy a set of race wheels and triathlon aerobar so you can transform your road bike to triathlon. That's a suggestion that I once got from a friend of mine who's a solid amateur cyclist. Just a thought Smile
Merida Scultura 5000 (2015)
Merida Big Nine 400 (2019)
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#4
(04-26-2022, 02:32 PM)Rumata Wrote:  I'm a total newb. Going to do my first triathlon in the summer. Hopefully 90 minute hard Peloton rides I've been doing will keep me from dying during the ride stage.

Any recommendations for a decent inexpensive bike I can use for triathlon but also on recreational rides with my kids? Thanks!

I have never ridden on a Peloton before so I don't know how it equates to being on a real bike for the same period of time. I know that when I use my wind trainer it does not seem quite as tiring as when on the road (flat terrain) and I am using the same bike for both.

I think the recommendation of finding a high quality used road bike (or tri bike) that you can reconvert for use with aerobars when racing is a great idea. Tri-bikes have a slightly different geometry than a road bike so you may want to get by a bike shop and test ride what they have to see if one feels more comfortable. Road bikes have the seat post a little further back than a tri, but that can be modified by the offset on your seat post. Same with the bar height.

I have only ridden road bikes with a couple exceptions (1 tri, 1 "lo-pro"), and the tri bike was not my size (important!) so I couldn't make any reasonable comparison. The Lo-pro is a blast, but not sure what they allow for competition; and the position may not be comfortable for the longer tri stages.
Take care,
Jesper

"I am become Death, the destroyer of bicycles." NJS
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#5
@Rumata I have been hearing of "draft allowed" events in the triathlon, but they require road bikes if that is the case. In regular tri events where drafting is not allowed I would at least slowly progress to a tri bike if you are planning on getting into the sport in a serious manner.

As a note: I ride an old English 3 speed when out with some friends and on leisure rides. Even though it's quite heavy (50 lbs), it provides to me a comfortable ride while keeping me from wanting to sprint away from the group or crush climbs. It also gives me legs a little different workout, and due to the weight provides some decent training time without appearing to do so. I will still ride it at plus 15mph when doing a little solo sightseeing.
If you get an old 3 speed (they are inexpensive, $25-$150, and readily available on craigslist; many in very good condition), it would give you something to ride with the family, and be a safer and more enjoyable alternative to pulling out a road or tri bike just to cruise around around with the kids.
Take care,
Jesper

"I am become Death, the destroyer of bicycles." NJS
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