What is So Bad About Buying a Wrong Bike
Let me put it the easy way: a screwdriver can do so much more than just put the screws in, but it is all it was originally designed for. As everything else out there, you can use different bikes for purposes other than they were really designed for. You can load a mountain bike with cargo and make it look like a mule, but you might have problems going through dense woods and down the mountainside (or up for that matter) with all this extra weight. It works the same way for road bikes: tons of hanging cargo will make it difficult to maneuver on the road; riding it on a mountain trail in the woods would make it quite unstable. Try taking a Cruiser on a trail and you will quickly realize that it’s a wrong bike for the route. Cruisers will get you a comfortable ride, but some lack such controls as front brakes and have fewer gears that are much needed for these kinds of rides. With that said, there are some cruisers, that have all of that, but it’s more likely a Hybrid dressed as a Cruiser. You can still take them for an occasional trail ride, but keep in mind at all times – they are paved-road oriented: be cautious with speeds and turns.
You can accessorize your bike for your riding needs more specifically, as you advance, put some miles on your new ride first, and understand what else will make you a happier rider. However, the type of your future ride should be picked at the research stage of your bike shopping. If you’re completely or somewhat clueless (it is totally ok – we were there too) of a type of riding you’re planning to do, properly sized Hybrid will most likely be your safest choice, since it gives you the best of both worlds. If later on you decide to get into something more hard-core on either side of the spectrum, you will still be able to sell your Hybrid and buy whatever it is you need. In any case, at that point you will have a lot clearer understanding of your needs. Although buying a high-end bike might sound as a good idea (as long as you’re set on the type and pricing options), my personal recommendation (and I am rather an enthusiast – not a pro) is to go through the learning curve on a lower end brand until you understand what type of bikes you prefer, what brands you favor, and riding mistakes you need to work through. “Bike hopping” can run the bill up fairly quickly especially when you’re buying new bikes every time.
Explore Craigslist: sometimes you can find your dream bike for a fraction of the original cost. Another important thing is to find a mechanic, who knows what he’s doing and doesn’t charge you an arm and a leg for his work (usually they are cheaper than the stores). Ask a lot of questions and ask for recommendations. Discuss possible future upgrades, but remember one thing – if you are not set on the type do not go overboard with upgrades. When picking an upgrade, make sure you can remove it and mount it on your next bike if you decide to sell (or otherwise get rid of) your old ride. You’d rather put your money into the one you end up owning at the end.