killing_rose: Abby from NCIS asleep next to a caf-Pow with the text "Goth Genius at Work" (Abby)
[personal profile] killing_rose posting in [community profile] bicycles
This is Hunk o' Junk, lovingly referred to as Hunk. Amazingly, my school bike, which is 15 years old if it's a day and looks (and usually handles) like a POS bought at Walmart, pisses me off a lot less. And, other than adding air to its poor tires, is worlds less fussy.

The first is a cleaner, mildly newer version of Hunk; the second is a vaguely blurry comparison of where my hips come up to on him. I'd have just added in the images, but I was having Issues with that today.

Hunk is a Diamondback Mountain Bike, a 26" Topanga. I ended up with him by accident last year; I was actually in the middle of transitioning to a road bike and wound up with him instead. He is a wonderful, wonderful bike. He's just...well, he's not the bike for me. When I call him Hunk o' Junk, it's more out of frustration because we are Not Bicycle Soulmates. My last two mountain bikes, both Schwinn bikes, were the right weight and height for me. Hunk is definitely not.

Hunk is not made for a 5'2", 130 pound female. He really isn't made a petite female who's riding him as an everyday bike in lieu of buying a car. But I got him for mostly free because he's on permanent loan from my 5'10", 170+ pound brother who stopped riding him when he bought a car. I really should buy a new bike that fits me, but I'm trying to hold off until graduation. (And then I have my eye on a folder.)

Hunk is nice for the off-trail biking I do in the summer, holds up well to the "oh look--three feet of snow and ice, but it's 46* and everyone should be outside!" thing that's occurring right now, and handles well when I decide that biking down a 70 or 80 degree hill is fun.

At the same time, I've wound up twisting an ankle, slammed into a tree, and nearly ended up in a lake. He may be great for off-trail, but he's not the best at dodging dogs and children on some of the trails. To say nothing of how persnickety his gears can be, which isn't helpful when I slam on the brakes to avoid a moose or the Wildlife Of The Day. He's too heavy and huge for me, and biking on him two days ago reminded me of that.

Besides which, I have never encountered a bike who is this particular about his tires. If you don't fill him up at the gas station, I swear to god, he sulks. Really. I can't make this up.

(And besides, I want a bike with fenders next time. I don't actually appreciate being mud-spattered and/or drenched on the really fun weather days.)

On the other hand, when I finally replace him, I will have to compare different models. This means that I will actually have to acquaint myself with the local bike shops. Grr. There are only two or three places in town, and I haven't really heard fabulous things about any of them.

Date: 2010-04-03 01:35 am (UTC)
sara: S (Default)
From: [personal profile] sara
Oh, I sympathize. It was a great day when I got a big enough tax refund that I could trade in Tippy the Not-So-Wonder Bike on something that didn't suck.

Date: 2010-04-03 04:55 am (UTC)
darkemeralds: Naked woman on a bike, caption "I don't care, I'm still free" (Bike Freedom)
From: [personal profile] darkemeralds
My bike is a Yeah, $650 hunk of junk too. I exaggerate (because Clyde actually fits me well and makes me pretty happy, but is made of cheap parts and not solidly built), but the point is, there doesn't seem to be a simple, solid bike on the market--not at ANY price. They seem to be fancy and over-equipped, or simple but not solid, or something, but it's damned hard to find a decent bike at a decent price.

As to frame size, I admire you for riding Hunk at all.

I hope one of your local bike shops turns out to be a better fit than you expect.

Date: 2010-04-03 08:24 pm (UTC)
uhhuhlex: Me posing by my isight with new glasses. (Default)
From: [personal profile] uhhuhlex
I know what you mean about the wrong size thing! (RIP) Arthur was supposedly my brother's bike - my brother is much taller than me. The frame was a little uncomfortable in all the *wrong* places.


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