Welcome to Bike Chatter, my name is Chris and I’ve been passionate about bikes since as far back as I can remember. It was my father that bought me my first bike at the tender age of 4 and taught me to ride…I’ve come a long way since then, competing for my country in several events around the world in a cycling career spanning over 15 years.
This website is my chance to give back to the sport that has given me so much enjoyment over the years. It is my goal to help those new to cycling, to learn what is it they need to know before making a purchase and providing them the ammunition required for that buying decision.
Could you just get any old bike and go?
Sure, you could, and if it means you get out there and enjoy the freedom of cycling with no destination in mind, then I encourage you to do so. However, if you have an aim, be it to commute to work via bike, or to compete in a triathlon on perhaps just take weekend rides in the park with your family…whatever your reason for buying a road, mountain or hybrid bike – I am here to help you.
A Look at Entry Level Bikes
Determining what an entry level road bike is certainly is very subjective and can be quite different depending on the person who is asking the question. Part of the answer certainly is based on your budget, but another part of the equation is how you intend on using it.
For example if you only want the road bike to ride to the store or for Sunday only rides then you might be satisfied with a much less expensive bike. Where if you want to get started riding with a group and going for longer rides but don’t have the budget to buy a really expensive bike that is quite a different situation.
Some people feel that when you’re looking to buy an entry level road bike the most important thing is cost. I understand that any purchase will and should depend on what you can afford however, you also need to consider how often and far you intend to ride your bike. I had to come to the same decision many times throughout my cycling career when it was a choice between determined by budget.
The first thing to understand is that you don’t have to break the bank in order to get a starter bike. There are road bikes for under $500. But you also need to understand what you will be getting when you buy one of these bikes. They are typically heavier and the gears aren’t nearly as smooth as a higher end bike. They will also take more effort to ride and will probably not be as comfortable. I know you’re only starting your journey as a road cyclist but most people find that the more they ride the more you want to ride and to get a better bike.
An ideal entry level road bike in my opinion will be one that will allows you to try out the sport and have some fun before you invest a lot or before you know what you really want in a good road bike.
Most of the major manufacturers make what they consider their entry level bike. These bikes are way above the ones you might see in a department store and usually are priced around $1000 dollars. For someone really wanting to get into the sport this is where I would start. They are well built and have decent components and will be good enough to give you a decent feel for the sport.
The other thing you can do is buy a used bike. Now this can open a whole new can of worms but if you know what you’re looking for it certainly is a way of getting a good bike for a great price. I actually bought my first road bike on ebay. It was a $5,000 dollar bike and only two years old which I was able to purchase for $1000 dollars. Now pictures don’t tell the full story and I could have got stuck with a lemon but it has turned out to be a fabulous buy and I love riding it. Now after I bought it I took it to a bike shop and had it checked over and tuned up and that cost me a little money and you should do that too if you buy used.
If you are looking to get into cycling and are looking to buy an entry level road bike I highly recommend you buy the best one your budget can afford. You will not be disappointed you did.
What Are The Various Bike Options?
Since early-mid 2000, road bikes have seen a surge in popularity as the world comes to terms with high fuel costs and an increase in traffic and congestion. Commuting to a place of work via road bike is one of the best things you can do if you’re looking to get fit, save money and enjoy life that little bit more.
We have a complete section on road bikes here.
The mountain bike has been a popular choice for over 20 years with both the younger and older generation fond of the added seat comfort, suspension and gear choices available. Whilst not as fast as a road bike, the mountain bikes of today do offer many more bells and whistles and are more suited to leisure riding and/or downhill biking where a thicker tire and grip is required.
View our section on mountain bikes here.
Setting nicely in between the road and mountain bike is the Hybrid Bike. These beauties are only a few years young into the bike market and have really pulled at my heart strings for a number of reasons.
First you get the speed of a road bike, the the sturdiness of a mountain bike. You get better gearing and traction, a more comfortable seat when compared to a road bike and they also look way cooler!
View our section on hybrid bikes here.
Obviously no bike website would be complete without discussing all of the accessories available for your bike, to make your cycling both safer and more enjoyable. From helmets and bike locks to indoor bike trainers and bike computers…we have it all here.
Jump to our bike accessories section.