Buying a Bike @ Wheel Fast

allezNo not me, I have enough ponies in the stable (as Seth would put it.)  I have been talking to Lance for the the last couple of weeks about buying a bike.  I volunteered my expertise in finding the right bike for him.  We set today as the day we would go to Wheel Fast Bicycle Co. in Chatham IL.  I have a good relationship with the owner Matt and manager Jake.

This is one of the first things that I point out…  Build a relationship with your local shop.  Sure you can find some great deals on the Internet, but there is nothing like do it your selfers.  Buying something online then bringing it to the local shop to fix or adjust it. (Justin!)

Lance went in with a set budget.  He was realistic in the money he could spend, 2Gs.  You can get a pretty nice road bike for that, but he was just getting into the sport, so he needed a lot of accessories.  No, not the bells, baskets and mirrors…  I put a list of item that he needed  and from that we kind of build backwards.

  1. Helmet
  2. road shoes
  3. clipless pedals
  4. water bottle cages
  5. floor pump
  6. flat repair kit… tubes, bag, CO2, tire levers, patch kit
  7. gloves
  8. wireless computer w/cadence
  9. aero bars

The list was long, and it was kind of like going Christmas shopping.  Once we had his accessories all price out, we knew what we could spend on a bike.  Roughly $1500…

Wheel Fast, carries a couple of great lines of bikes, Specialized and Giant.  I steered Lance towards the Specialized.  I love my Specialized bikes and feel kind of special because of them. 

We talked with Matt and found our model.  The Specialized Allez Elite was the perfect model for him.    This is the top entry level competitive race bike and was pretty much full Shimano 105.  It is an aluminum frame with carbon stays and fork.  The only down side was the compact crank set, but we compromised with a swap out to a racier cassette.

This is going to be a pretty sweet ride, for someone that is just getting in to the sport of cycling and triathlon.

The only downside to this whole adventure, and I know it is just killing Lance, is that Matt had to order it.  Of course it will only take a few days to get in.

He was able to ride a lower end Allez and was sized up correctly with Matt’s fitting stick (You have to be pretty special to have Matt use his stick on you!)

Anyhow we spent a couple of hours at the shop.  Lance got to take home a pile of stuff that he couldn’t use until he got his bike, but I think he was rather excited.  Who wouldn’t be?

After a long morning at the shop, I was able to get on the trainer and complete Coach Troys Iron Girl video and then I hoped on the treadmill for an easy mile warm down.

What a day!  I suspect we will hear from Lance when he gets that shiney new bike.

If anyone else is needing some advise on buying a road or triathlon bike let me know, I would be happy to help!