Complete Bicycle Buying Guide for Beginners

To find a perfect bicycle for beginners is not an easy task. Our complete guide for road bikes, hybrid bikes with mountain bike buying guide can derive you to find the desired one.

Let's start !

Thinking of a new bike? Ok cool! However, from where and how to get started? While walking into a bike shop it’s very simple to get lost to find the right one.There are different types of bikes: road bike, hybrid bike, mountain bike, comfort bike, commuting bike etc. so many options. Puzzled? No doubt.Even the bicycle shop owners face these types of problem regularly. Many people are roaming in but can’t decide what to buy and don’t have enough knowledge.

5 Easy steps to choose the right bike for YOU

Yet you are surfing through the websites then you will get lost into vast information and full of different bikes.

  • What would be the best size for me?
  • Which type will suit me?
  • What would be the best price?

So many questions! Wait, let me guide you. Our complete bicycle buying guide for beginners can help you to reach your goal.

1st Step: Choose the right bike type

Start with the basic questions and ask yourself like what type of person am I? Do I like adventure with speed? Or adventure only? Do I fancy riding country side or city path?Let me help you to know about three main types bikes that will assist you to choose the right bike.

Road Bikes

All bikes can ride on roads. Road bikes are mainly designed for riding on smooth pavement. It has skinny tires generally not wider than 32mm. Road bikes usually have handlebars which are constructed to be comfortable for the long extent of ride. Road bikes can occasionally ride on full dirt or exasperate, but the ride will be very unpleasant. Bikes designed for off-road would be easier to control and can ride on surfaces like loose dirt, rocks or packets of sands which will be troublesome for a road bike.These type of bikes are for speed lovers. You can reach long distance in a short period of time. These are not so comfortable like mountain bikes because the riding position is lower. Tires are narrow so it can go faster. These bikes are light in weight.

Mountain Bikes

Mountain bikes are mainly designed for off-road cycling. Mountain bikes shares similarities with other bikes but have a feature designed to improve toughness and performance in rough terrain. You can ride Mountain bike mostly all over the places. But the best place to ride it is the countryside area. It’s an enjoyable ride.

Mountain bike comes with front or full suspension wide knobby tires with more heavy-duty wheels including powerful brakes and lower gear ratios to climb up steep grades. The strong rims and large tires make the bike favorite to countryside riders and provides very good control at all situations.

Mountain bikes are made to handle different types of terrain and features. Gears up to 27 speed to make both climbing and swift descents easy. In the market hard-tail and full suspension,mountain bikes are also available. Front shock and dual suspension mountain bikes are quite comfortable.

Hybrid Bikes

Hybrid bikes are just the mixture of a road bike and a mountain bike. In a nut shell a bicycle that's appropriate for all common purpose riding in different types of locations that is why the most of the hybrids are likely to be used for converting.

Normally hybrid bikes have flat handlebars like mountain bikes rather than the drop bar you may see in road bikes. The shifting and braking equipment are very similar to mountain biking elements reference to STI-style included brake and shift knobs which you may see in almost all road bikes.

These features allow an added upright riding facility. Hybrid bikes are likely to use wide tires than road bikes.

Once you have chosen your bike type then it’s time to see the perfect bike size that fits for you.

2nd Step: What would be the right bike size for me?

Most sellers suggest for different frame sizes even if you are buying the bike or not but you should consider the size which is perfect for you. You can find out your bike size yourself by following few steps.

  1. First, you need to know your size. Take off your shoes and measure your height.
  2. You need to measure your leg length which is called leg inseam.
  3. Check the size chart for mountain bikes, road bikes and hybrid bikes from our complete bicycle buying guide for beginners.

Men’s Road Bikes size chart

Men's

Rider Height

Road bike Frame size

Mens Bike Height

Feet & Inches

CM

CM

Size

4’10” – 5’0″

148 – 152cm

47 – 48cm

XX-Small

5’0’’ - 5’3’’

152 – 160cm

49 – 50cm

Extra Small

5’3’’ - 5’6’’

160 – 168cm

51 – 53cm

Small

5’6’’ - 5’9’’

168 – 175cm

54 – 55cm

Medium

5’9’’ - 6’0’’

175 – 183cm

56 – 58cm

Large

6’0’’ - 6’3’’

183 – 191cm

58 – 60cm

Extra Large

6’3’’ - 6’9’’

191 – 198cm

61 – 63cm

XX-Large

Women’s Road Bikes size chart

Women's

Rider Height

Road bike Frame size

Womens Bike Height Chart

Feet & Inches

CM

CM

Size

4’10” – 5’1″

147 – 155cm

44 – 46cm

XX-Small

5’1’’ - 5’3’’

155 – 160cm

47 – 49cm

Extra Small

5’3’’ - 5’5’’

160 – 165cm

50 – 52cm

Small

5’5’’ - 5’8’’

165 – 172cm

53 – 55cm

Medium

5’8’’ - 5’10’’

172 – 180cm

56 – 57cm

Large

Men’s Mountain Bikes size chart

Men's

Rider Height

Mountain Bike Frame size

Mens Bike Height

Feet & Inches

CM

Frame size (Inches)

Frame size ( cm)

Frame Size

4’10” – 5’2″

148 – 158cm

13" - 14"

33 – 37Cm

X-Small

5’2’’ - 5’6’’

158 – 168cm

15” – 16”

38 – 42Cm

Small

5’6’’ - 5’10’’

168 – 178cm

17" - 18"

43 – 47Cm

Medium

5’10’’ - 6’1’’

178 – 185cm

19" - 20"

48 – 52Cm

Large

6’1’’ - 6’4’’

185 – 193cm

21" - 22"

53 – 57Cm

X-Large

6’4’’ - 6’6’’

193 – 198cm

23” – 24”

58 – 61Cm

XX-Large

Women’s Mountain Bikes size chart

Women's

Rider Height

Mountain bike Frame size

Womens Bike Height Chart

Feet & Inches

CM

Frame size (Inches)

Frame Size

4’10” – 5’2″

148 - 158cm

13" - 14"

X-Small

5’2’’ - 5’6’’

158 – 168cm

15" - 16"

Small

5’6’’ - 5’10’’

168 - 178cm

17" - 18"

Medium

5’10’’ - 6’1’’

178 - 185cm

19”+

Large

Men’s Hybrid Bikes size chart

Men's

Rider Height

Hybrid Bike Frame size

Mens Bike Height

Feet & Inches

CM

Frame size (Inches)

Frame size ( cm)

Frame Size

4’10” – 5’2″

148 – 158cm

13" - 14"

33 – 37Cm

X-Small

5’2’’ - 5’6’’

158 – 168cm

15” – 16”

38 – 42Cm

Small

5’6’’ - 5’10’’

168 – 178cm

17" - 18"

43 – 47Cm

Medium

5’10’’ - 6’1’’

178 – 185cm

19" - 20"

48 – 52Cm

Large

6’1’’ - 6’4’’

185 – 193cm

21" - 22"

53 – 57Cm

X-Large

6’4’’ - 6’6’’

193 – 198cm

23” – 24”

58 – 61Cm

XX-Large

Women’s Hybrid Bikes size chart

Women's

Rider Height

Hybrid bike Frame size

Womens Bike Height Chart

Feet & Inches

CM

Frame size (CM)

Frame Size

4’10” – 5’2″

148 - 158cm

33 – 37cm

X-Small

5’2’’ - 5’6’’

158 – 168cm

38 – 42cm

Small

5’6’’ - 5’10’’

168 - 178cm

43 – 47cm

Medium

5’10’’ - 6’1’’

178 - 185cm

48 – 52cm

Large

3rd Step: What should be the best price range?

Bikes may be expensive but it’s not so difficult to cover up. It is essential to have a new bike but how to find the perfect bike within the budget? There are some important factors that can play a big role to reduce the price. Those are the derailleur, shifters, framing material, brakes etc.

Bike Price

Well, first you have to find out why you need the bike for because it always depends on your need and on what type of rider you are!

If you are very fancy of riding and can’t stop riding for a day then obviously you need something strong, heavy and long lasting so that your bike doesn’t get tired.

If you want to ride only on weekends then you really don’t need very expensive one.

If you want to participate in racing very often then the components must be very strong and long lasting for heavy duty. Otherwise, the maintenance cost will be high.

Online shopping is most trustworthy than window shopping because they are good in price with average quality. There is no extra shop cost or helping assistance charge.

For the known brand, I don’t mind to pay more. I have a mountain bike of a known brand which I bought with $1699. On the other hand, I also have a Diamondback mountain bike that cost me $1000. They are quite similar in performance and reviews.

Let’s see the price range according to the rider type-

  • If you are a regular rider and looking for a new bike then you should go for bikes around $500 - $1000. Because these bikes have strong components so don’t need to go repair shops very often.
  • If you ride occasionally in weekends only then you should go for the bikes those start from $250 -$500. It will help you to train well.
  • If you want to take part in the races then you must try to find something starting from $1000. These bikes are lighter in weight but stronger in components. Lightweight can provide you more speed.

Avoid Cheap Bikes, Except for Very Casual Use.

Often in big stores low priced bikes are sold for around $200. It seems like excellent deals, but I will suggest you for spending $300 or more if your budget allows because you will find many bikes with this budget.

In the mass market, bikes have low-priced construction than expensive bikes and it can reflect on seven or eight dollars more. Most of the time they just come in simply one size, so maybe you are not probable to get a great fit.

You may think low-priced bikes from a department store simply for the most casual use, and fix with a front-suspension model, which is possible to be better than a low-priced full-suspension bike. You might desire a mass market bike for your kids who will ride a bike speedily or handle it roughly.

If you are spending a smaller amount on something then the more knowledge you will have to be with your purchase. Same things happen when you go to buying a cheap bike.

Spend your money wisely and you will be surprised at just how good some cheap bikes are these days but making a bad choice will make you regret soon.

Taking the accurate buying decision just depends on having the right information.

The major mistake that we notice when people make an effort and buy a bike on a budget is that they will get tricked into buying bikes forced with small pieces they don’t need. For example, you are looking for a cheap bike to ride to work but you are buying a cheap full-suspension bike with disc brakes. I think you should avoid full suspension bike on a budget.

A cheap bike that comes with suspension can be more painful and less pleasurable to ride than a bike without suspension.

Low priced full suspension bikes will always comprise with serious specification compromises compared with a front suspension hardtail or no suspension bikes at the same price level.

4th Step: Choose the Best Bicycle Brands

I prefer to stick with brands that I trust. Big brands never associate with bad bikes though this cannot be taken as a law, still, you will be able to take some assurance by looking at brands such as Diamondback, Titan, Mongoose, Schwinn etc.

Even though you should not get panic if you have not heard them before, plenty of small companies are coming up with outstanding bikes.

Still, if you have not heard about the brands before then the next steps of this buying guide for beginners will help you to decide.

Mountain Bike Brand

Here you will get the list of well-known bicycle brands along with all types of bike manufacturers including road, hybrid and mountain bikes. You can compare the bikes by brands from the following list.

Giant

Giant bicycle headquarters is in Taiwan along with USA Company based Newbury Park. Giant offers various types of categories hybrid, mountain, road, BMX, and women bikes.

Available in all expertise bike shops, the bikes collection price from $250 to $600 for mountain bikes, and $500 to $8,000 for road bikes.​

Mongoose

Mongoose is made by Pacific Cycle by Dorel Industries. It has been on the market since 1974. It offers different categories including comfort, hybrid, mountain, road and BMX bikes. These are available in the sporting goods stores, bike shops, and departmental stores. The bikes price start from around $280 to $800 for mountain bikes, $300 to $350 for comfort bikes and about $2700 for road bikes.

Schwinn

Schwinn is also a Pacific Cycle’s brand. It has a wide-range of bikes including children’s, BMX, hybrid, cruisers, mountain, and road bike models. Available in big-market stores and bike shops and price range starts from $250 to $1000 for hybrid bikes $570 to $4,300 for road bikes and $390 to $600 for mountain bikes.

Diamondback

Diamondback started out as a brand recognized just for BMX but last few decades it has developed into something more wide-ranged and progressive. Diamondback offers different types of BMX, Road bikes, mountain, kids’, hybrid, city bikes and women bikes. Price range starts from $330 t0 $6,300 for road bikes, mountain bikes start from 399.99 to 3,899.99 and city bikes from $250 to $2700.

Fortified

Fortified Invincible is exclusively designed to thrive in the town. It's constructed to prevent flats and rust and all the machinery are locked down with theft-resistant lock, it is throbbing to steal. It is 100% theft protected. It has weather resistance saddle and also shockproof.Price single speed $449 and 8speed starts from $699 to $749.

Fuji

Established in Japan in 1899, it also manufactures bikes in the U.S. from its headquarters in Philadelphia. Its invention line includes BMX, kids’, lifestyle, mountain, road, and women's bikes. The bikes price starts from $240 to $3,400 for mountain bikes and $470 to $6,340 for road bikes.

  • I personally prefer Diamondback, Schwinn, and Fortified as hybrid bikes.
  • As road bikes, I prefer Diamondback, Schwinn, and GMC.
  • I also like Diamondback, Mongoose, Titan, and Gravity as mountain bikes.

5th Step: Some features that you shouldn’t ignore

Personally, I have some opinion in choosing bike features. A bike shop may exchange some components at very little cost or without cost. Some features are given below.

Brakes

Many bikes come with more than one kind of brakes. V-brakes or linear-pull brakes, cantilever brakes and caliper brakes are all suitable for most type of biking.

In general, very good performance comes with disc brakes that can be either automatic or hydraulic.

Disc brakes will keep your wheel rims fine from the graze of dirty muddy biking. A store may retrofit several bikes that have caliper mounts with discs for about $100 in addition.

Drivetrain

A bicycle’s chain stuck between the crank set in the middle of the bike and the back cassette fixed with the back hub.

Cranksets, in general, have two chain rings named doubles or three which is called triples. Changing from one chain ring to another offers gear changing while changing between the sprockets in the rear cassette provide excellent gear adjustments. The number of speeds a bike has is the number of chain rings multiplied by the number of sprockets in the rear cassette. For example, a bike with double front chains rings and a nine sprocket cassette so it has a total of 18 speeds. Similarly, a bike with triple chains rings and nine sprocket cassette has total 27 speeds. Additional speeds usually mean additional mobility on a variety of tracks.

Saddle

There are different types of saddles some are thin and firm, some are wide and flexible. Many have a suspension seat position, others are mounted tightly. If you feel like you don't like the seat then try one with a different form, add extra padding or less.

The thin and rigid seat on road bikes and mountain bikes gives extra control and allow you to change position and pedal very proficiently. Although the wider and more cushioned seats are comfortable for many hybrids bikes. These are comfortable for the relaxed but not as much of frequent for the rider.

Handlebars

High rise handlebars will allow you to sit upright comfortably. You can swap handlebars and stems to get improved riding position. Choice differs rider to rider, different rider means different options. So if you don’t feel comfortable you can replace the stem or handlebars according to your taste.

Shifters

The front derailleur moves the chain among the rings of the crank set when the back derailleur moves among the sprockets on the back cassette. Shifters control all derailleur, one shifter for each derailleur. Bend shifters are collars on the handlebars that you can bend to change the gears. Trigger shifters contain one lever for upshifting and a different one for downshifting. For the front and back gears one pair each. While you shift they will click, so you don't need to worry about where the next gear is!

Bike Essentials

I am a rider but I don’t have a helmet this is impossible. A helmet can protect your head from an accident. It is lifesaving. Here you found best bike helmets of the year.

Cycling shoes are another essential gear for a bike rider. Shoes with cleats can increase your effectiveness while pedaling, but you might require altered pedals to hold them.

Gloves are also important accessories. It will absorb the vibration and assist to look after your hands while jumping.

Similarly, Eye Glasses will protect your eyes from dust, bugs and wayward stones.

A bike water bottle will help you to prevent dehydrating your body while having long rides on a hot day.

Bike phone mount helps in preventing you from distractions on the road and also you can play and listen music without any difficulty at all.

Finally to select a perfect mountain bike is a delicate issue while it is a risky sport. You must decide first that what type of mountain bike you want. You can’t go with a cross-country bike for downhill racing because there must be some features may not be tuned to the challenges of downhill racing.

choose the right bike

Now you have enough knowledge about a complete bicycle buying guide so you need to take a wise and well-informed decision that which bike is right for you.​

Since you are starting to look at specific bike models and trying to figure out which bike is best for you to buy then don’t compromise with your specific needs and expectations. While taking buying decision you must think about the type of riding you want to do, your fitness needs, your aims and what type of terrain you will be riding

I hope this complete bicycle buying guide is helpful for you and has provided some important information as well. I expect it will assist you to pick a great new bike.

Happy Shopping and enjoy your ride!