Mountain Bike Reviews Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My girlfriend wants to get into biking and I want to buy her a bike, possibly a cruiser or a MTB. She won't be doing anything hardcore so she doesn't need anything special.

Recommendations? She is about 5/7 120lbs.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
48,237 Posts
strap624 said:
My girlfriend wants to get into biking and I want to buy her a bike, possibly a cruiser or a MTB. She won't be doing anything hardcore so she doesn't need anything special.

Recommendations? She is about 5/7 120lbs.
Used and have it tuned up, so she has a decent bike that will not turn her off to riding.
Make her experience special.
Nothing worse than starting on a heavy, poor functioning bike that is a struggle to use.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,310 Posts
That's two totally different bikes - cruiser and mtb. Get a bike that is designed for the type of riding she will do most of the time.
 

·
Fat-tired Roadie
Joined
·
18,453 Posts
strap624 said:
She won't be doing anything hardcore so she doesn't need anything special.
Ouch.

One of the most important things about this bike is that it be special. Doesn't necessarily have to mean expensive. Get a nice, used bike, and take your time on cleaning, tuning, and maybe even a coat of polish. The subtext of this object needs to be that you want her to ride with you, not just that you'll tolerate it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
I had to start looking for a new bike for my gf myself. She always ditches her fs walmart special to jump on my scott. Then im stuck with my bmx. Shes diggin the scott contessa.
 

·
Underskilled
Joined
·
4,484 Posts
Trust me this is a lot harder to get right, I have thrown away a lot of money getting something right for my wife.

As a guy your first thoughts are going to be, it needs to be light and nimble and suspension that works for a light rider. If you were buying for a light guy, you would be spot on, you are not, you are buying for a girl they are weird.

I have learnt the hard way, the most important thing is she feels comfortable on the bike and WITH the bike.

So, I am quite serious on this, number one priority is apperance.
It must be pretty and it must not look intimidating.

2: stable and hard to crash - this will make it confidence inspiring (a light weight race bike is not stable or confidence inspiring).

Weight is pretty irelevant, my wife now rides a Mongoose teocali (they are not light) her best friend rides a Kona Stinky (one of the heaviest bikes ever made).


When i got my wife riding I thought she would never do more than a bridle way down the side of a river. She is now racing guys down black routes and winning.

You are also a better rider than your wife, so for her to ride with you, she needs a better bike than you to compensate for the skill gap.

spend some time on the womens forum here and you will realise my tips are very valid.

make her feel confident and she will enjoy it (hopefully).

The mongoose teocali elite womens is the epitome of the ideal girls bike.
Pretty, hard to crash, comfortable, upright seating (to look at the view) and very very very stable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Well suspension isn't even important to her really, yes a front would be nice, but She has no interest in doing technical, steep or really anything more offroad than a dirt path. I myself am not a pro nor have I been riding very long, only 3 months, and i'm not yet capable of doing very much myself yet.

Basically she needs a decent quality beginners bike, preferably front suspension but not necessary, doesn't need discs or anything exotic.
 

·
wannabee
Joined
·
1,134 Posts
Live near a Performance Bike? Try there, they have a couple choices for around that price. Unfortunately $300 doesn't buy much bike these days. REI maybe?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
strap624 said:
My girlfriend wants to get into biking and I want to buy her a bike, possibly a cruiser or a MTB. She won't be doing anything hardcore so she doesn't need anything special.

Recommendations? She is about 5/7 120lbs.
Trek 3500? I got my wife an entry Gary Fisher and she loves it.
 

·
DynoDon
Joined
·
1,666 Posts
How about a new full suspension bike for her, $399.95

this way she can ride trails, road or put some fat tires on it and ride it on the beach,
http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/dawes/rh_2k.htm

DON'T just look at the name on the frame, they are mostly all made by the same mfg in Tiawan, look at the componets..Bikers Direct has some awesome bikes, I've bought 2 Motobecanes and would have spent thousands more to get the componets on the Motobecane Fantom Team, or Motobecane Fantom Comp, These are both great bikes, The Dawes is well equipped and a great deal at $399.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
385 Posts
Even if it's used, get something you can upgrade later. I'd make it a point to get something that can take a 100mm 1/8 threaded fork and disc brakes later if you want. That would mean staying away from most of those made-in-China crappy Wal-Mart specials. I live in China and many of the bikes we have in China are identical to the ones in US Wal-Marts. I work on them a lot for friends and have one as a loaner bike and they're basically crap. She won't like it very much. You'd have to replace a lot of stuff to make it decent so it's better to buy something decent to start with.

If it's not going to be a FS bike I'd get a nice big-butt saddle with spring suspension and maybe a cheap suspension seat post if that's not enough cushiness.

I'd probably look for something like a Giant Rincon that's a couple of years old. The new ones are not a whole lot over $300 though.

The Trek 3500 has a crappy 63 mm fork. Head angle may be an issue if you want to upgrade later. It's also a 21 speed. As long as you could go with a longer travel fork when the crappy one wears out it may be ok.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
641 Posts
I just want to reiterate a point that has already been made here because I experienced it first hand myself.

If she doesn't enjoy it right out of the gate, it's a lost cause. So don't put her on a bike that sucks.

I would second the lightly used eBay/craigslist suggestion. Get her something decent without breaking the bank.
 

·
since 4/10/2009
Joined
·
30,798 Posts
Absolutely, put her on a bike that's good enough that the bike will not be the reason she dislikes riding (if that's the case).

It needs to be ABSOLUTELY comfortable. Fit for her is probably going to be even more important. Fit needs to be perfect.

I understand the need to not spend so much that you're not going to break the bank. But if you want her to actually ride (and not just take it for a spin around the block once a year), it needs to be comfortable enough and it needs to work well enough that she has fun.

I got my wife a ~$500 rockhopper several years ago. She wanted to ride with me at the time, but didn't know if she'd like it. I wanted her to have a good enough bike to enjoy riding, but not be out a ton of money if she didn't like it.

5yrs ago, $500 worked as a price point. Not sure how inflation has changed things today, but it may be different.

I've put some disc brakes on it and upgraded the wheels and drivetrain on it in the ensuing years. The brakes are more confidence-inspiring for her than the stock cheapo vees ever were. They're BB7's...inexpensive, but very functional.

I'd say that weight is a big concern. You don't want the bike to be so heavy that she can't handle it. The earlier guy's suggestion regarding weight is a bit off. His girl sounds like she's now quite a skilled rider, and she's going to have the strength and endurance to match. Given the sort of riding she's doing, a heavier bike is going to be a requirement.

With yours being a raw beginner, it's a different story. I dunno what sort of exercise history she has, but she at least needs to be able to pick the bike up in case she reaches an obstacle she cannot ride or is afraid to ride. Loading the bike onto the rack is important, too. If she ever wants to ride on her own, will she be able to load/unload the bike herself? That's a concern.

My wife is unsure she's ready for a nicer bike yet. She feels that her bike is good enough. However, she does have difficulty with the weight of it. The fork is a large part of that. I do think if I find a better (lighter) used fork, I'll probably get it for her to help with that concern. But when she's ready for a new bike, you'd better believe I'll be helping her choose one.
 

·
Birdman aka JMJ
Joined
·
1,081 Posts
How about renting a bike? That way she can try out MTBing on a decent bike and see if she likes it. You'll be putting down a fraction of the $300 and putting her on a bike more representative of what an enthusiast might ride. Basically, get her on a bike that YOU would be okay riding (spec-wise, not size-wise). If she get's into MTBing, then start shopping for a good used bike. If not, you've saved yourself a lot of money.

FWIW, I got my wife into MTBing when all she had was a rigid steel Rockhopper. After I added a cheap suspension fork to help her and gauge her interest, I bought her a used Stumpjumper M2 and rebuilt it with full XT kit, a lightweight fork, and a suspension seatpost.
Now she has a Titus Racer X (which we took on our MTBing honeymoon in CO/UT), a Soma Groove, a Litespeed SS hardtail, and a Bianchi steel road bike. But that Stumpjumper made all the difference.
 

·
Former Bike Wrench
Joined
·
15,976 Posts
My wife (girlfriend at the time in 2005) and I went on a Craigslist hunt and found a garage ornament (ie ridden maybe 3-4 times) Trek 4300 for $200...I liked the deal, she liked the color.

We got a girlie seat for it ($30) and then we spent about $70 on gloves, helmet, and a padded shorts liner. I traded some tires for a used 2001 Judy SL (tires were free anyway, spent $5 on spray paint so fork would match bike and I already had the oil for it) but the stock fork would have been fine for just tooling around.

$300 for a serviceable bike and accessories that my wife likes the look of (most important factor) and that she enjoys riding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
166 Posts
CaveGiant said:
So, I am quite serious on this, number one priority is apperance.

It must be pretty and it must not look intimidating.

(a light weight race bike is not stable or confidence inspiring).

Weight is pretty irelevant,
.
Huh. Reminds me of the time I went bike shopping and the sales guy tried to sell me a piece of $hit bike because it looked "pretty". Was that you???

I don't think there are a lot of women in the women's lounge who value looks over function and performance. Be careful assuming what "we" want. Just because "we" may add some bling or personalization to a bike doesn't mean we don't care about how the bike rides.

M
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,681 Posts
The looks AND the weight are going to be significant issues.

Think about how much you would like to ride an ugly bike. Now multiply that by ten.

And a 120 pound female riding a 35 pound cheapie is about the same as a 200 pound guy riding a 60 pound bike. Imagine how much fun it would be to ride your 30 pound bike with a 30 pound sandbag strapped to it. Same-same.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top