Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
Topic Author
summerof42
Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:33 am

Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by summerof42 » Fri Jul 31, 2020 12:56 am

Purchased a Raleigh brand women's bike about 2 years ago. Although i's a great bike, I am disappointed with my expensive purchase of the bike and rack. I'm having issues with the weight of bike and always having to be a pest and bother someone to help me lift it up to get on the Saris bike rack on my car.

Any great suggestions for a very light-weight bike, preferably not with narrow tires since I'm 65 yrs young, which won't break the bank?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions! :happy

boomer_techie
Posts: 373
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2019 6:47 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by boomer_techie » Fri Jul 31, 2020 3:06 am

summerof42 wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 12:56 am
Any great suggestions for a very light-weight bike, preferably not with narrow tires since I'm 65 yrs young, which won't break the bank?
Head over to a local bike shop (i.e. LBS) (if they are open in your area) and tell them what you want/need. Some brands to consider: Specialized, Trek, Jamis.

gd
Posts: 1621
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 8:35 am
Location: MA, USA

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by gd » Fri Jul 31, 2020 6:51 am

Agree with the bike shop recommendation, additionally you probably want to present it to them as a comprehensive problem-- you need a new bike and rack you can manage. Reconsidering the rack is probably more useful than the bike. Unless you now have something unusually heavy, like a balloon-tire beach bike, focusing on weight is probably not going to succeed-- after a certain point, decreasing weight slightly causes exponential increase in price. Or maybe branch out into upper body exercise.

livesoft
Posts: 72507
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by livesoft » Fri Jul 31, 2020 6:56 am

Help me out and tell me how much your current bike actually weighs. Thanks!
Wiki This signature message sponsored by sscritic: Learn to fish.

Topic Author
summerof42
Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:33 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by summerof42 » Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:48 pm

Thank you kindly for he replies; however, I posted my question here because I did purchase the bike from a local bike shop in town several years ago. I went in there to trade in my Schwinn, expressing my concerns regarding the weight of the bike, and the Raleigh bike I have is what he recommended. When I lifted it in the shop I thought it was heavier than I desired but I was told it would be fine.

The bike shop is no longer in business so I can't go back. My plan now is to go to another bike shop but I wanted recommendations on brands and styles.

The bike is a Raleigh Detour 1 - Women's SM. See link below. It shows weight is 31 under specifications
https://www.raleighusa.com/detour1-r143

Starfish
Posts: 1890
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:33 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by Starfish » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:21 pm

Any bike except the aggressive road ones are hard to put on a car. The rack is the problem, not the bike.

Topic Author
summerof42
Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:33 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by summerof42 » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:28 pm

Starfish wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:21 pm
Any bike except the aggressive road ones are hard to put on a car. The rack is the problem, not the bike.
As indicated, I am having trouble lifting the bike, I find it to be heavy for me. It's not the rack, the rack is perfectly fine. I bought the Saris bones 2 rack.

Starfish
Posts: 1890
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:33 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by Starfish » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:35 pm

summerof42 wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:28 pm
Starfish wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:21 pm
Any bike except the aggressive road ones are hard to put on a car. The rack is the problem, not the bike.
As indicated, I am having trouble lifting the bike, I find it to be heavy for me. It's not the rack, the rack is perfectly fine. I bought the Saris bones 2 rack.
Sorry, I was under the false impression that you have a roof rack.
It is pretty much the worst time to buy a bike. I had troubles finding basic grease and a wrench.
30lbs is not that bad. A mid range road bike is over 20lbs.
Last edited by Starfish on Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

sailaway
Posts: 1778
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 1:11 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by sailaway » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:38 pm

To get much lighter than that you may need other materials, which can add up fast. Even my Montague folding bike is only a couple of pound lighter.

Topic Author
summerof42
Posts: 136
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 12:33 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by summerof42 » Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:58 pm

Tiz true Starfish and you're spot on. I spoke with my neighbor and he said he's on a waiting list for a bike. With that said, I'll keep what I have and just rely on neighbor's when I need it lifted and when I'm out and about, hopefully I can find a night in shining armor to safe the day.

Never thought I would see the day where you had to be on a waiting list for bikes. That, and toilet paper and Lysol disinfectant spray. Welcome to 2020!

bikesandbeers
Posts: 176
Joined: Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:08 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by bikesandbeers » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:08 am

Local bike shop is the best place to start, although I think they will be hard pressed to find what you are looking for.
Under 25 pounds on something that isn't a carbon road bike is going to be hard. Even more so given the stock issues right now.
A quick look at REI (one of the few places that seems to reliable publish weight) showed a Cannodale Althea 2 women bike at 26.5 pounds, but out of stock.

If you are serious about riding and getting a light bike, you probably looking at a custom build.

My wife's engagement bike is probably around 24 pounds, built around a Rivendell Betty Foy frame (now discontinued) using high quality, light wight components. a Susie W. Longbolts or a Cheviot would probably be the closet things they have now, but you'd be looking at $3k+ for the build, plus however long the backlog is at the shop.

Of course, if this whole conversation is being driven by the weight to lift onto your car rack, that might be the place to focus. Can the Saris be lower you you don't have to lift it so high, or can you put one side of the bike up and then another, or rig up some sort of pulley to get you leverage?
Is a low hitch rack and an option?

Starfish
Posts: 1890
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:33 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by Starfish » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:53 am

Does it have to be a women bike? They look heavier then they should be from what I see, probably because of the geometry.

User avatar
dratkinson
Posts: 4962
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 6:23 pm
Location: Centennial CO

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by dratkinson » Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:28 am

bikesandbeers wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:08 am
...

Of course, if this whole conversation is being driven by the weight to lift onto your car rack, that might be the place to focus. Can the Saris be lower you you don't have to lift it so high, or can you put one side of the bike up and then another, or rig up some sort of pulley to get you leverage?
Is a low hitch rack and an option?

:idea: Great minds think alike.

Assuming I understand how your bike rack is mounted to your car....

Is your neighbor "handy"?

Can he attach a bike hoist (pulleys and rope) to your Saris bike rack?

Image
See: Saris bones 2 rack: http://www.google.com/search?q=Saris+bo ... k&tbm=isch

Image
See: bike hoist system: http://www.google.com/search?l&tbm=isch ... ist+system


The pulleys would give you the leverage you need to lift your bike. Notice there are 2x vertical rope sections holding up each pulley that is attached to the bike. This means the weight of the bike (~31lbs) is divided among 4x rope sections (~8lbs = 31lbs / 4). This means an ~8lb pull on the end of the rope would give you ~32lbs (= 4 x ~8lbs) of lifting capability. So the bike weight you are required to lift drops from ~31lbs to ~8lbs.


Once you get the bike lifted, you have two options to carry it.


Option #1. Carry the bike ON the rack, as previously done.

After lifting the bike, it should be within a foot of being ON the rack. And since it is being held up by 2x pulley hooks, you should need to lift less than ~half the bikes weight (<16lbs = 31/2) to lift one end at a time into position onto the rack. Should be easy to do. Secure it as before.


Option #2. Carry the bike suspended BELOW the rack.


Notice, the bike---if left on the pulleys, and not lifted up onto the rack---would be carried suspended BELOW the Saris bike rack. So you'd want to use additional ropes to securely tie your bike to the rack so it couldn't pop off the pulley hooks. These additional tie downs are a necessary CYA for a suspended load.

A bike suspended below the rack would be more likely to swing, so you'd also need to tie the bike to the bumper so it couldn't swing and hit/damage itself or your vehicle. You want the bike tied down in tension---upper ropes pulling up, lower ropes pulling down and outside*, so the bike can’t swing/move while in transit.

* Since a triangle is more stable than a parallelogram, you want to tie** the lower bike (** frame) to the outside corners of the bumper. So the bike is tied down in the shape of a triangle---tie downs at: lower-left bumper, upper bike rack, lower-right bumper---so the bike is in tension and can’t swing neither in-out nor left-right.

** (Added) Tie to the bike frame, not to the wheel rims, to avoid bending the wheel rims. The wheels should spin freely in transit.



Edit. Second thoughts.
Last edited by dratkinson on Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:58 am, edited 2 times in total.
d.r.a., not dr.a. | I'm a novice investor, you are forewarned.

boomer_techie
Posts: 373
Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2019 6:47 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by boomer_techie » Sat Aug 01, 2020 5:42 am

summerof42 wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:48 pm
The bike is a Raleigh Detour 1 - Women's SM. See link below. It shows weight is 31 under specifications
https://www.raleighusa.com/detour1-r143
Where that bike has extra weight:

1) It has a threaded headset and quill stem. That means it has a solid steel wedge hidden inside. Also, the stem is solid aluminum except for a hole - for a long steel bolt.

2) The crankset will be heavier than better models. The bike has 3x7 gearing, but the crankset itself is cheap and heavy.

So: A bike with a "threadless" headset will save some weight. A better crank will save weight. Perhaps even look for something with 2x gearing. (Likely 2x9 or 2x10.) There are even (mountain) groupsets with 1x gearing - with a really wide gearing range in back.

livesoft
Posts: 72507
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by livesoft » Sat Aug 01, 2020 5:50 am

Weight training will make that bike seem lighter and will make your life better and of a higher quality ... especially in the future. And you don't need good weather to make your arms, legs, back, torso, and chest muscles stronger. Since your bike is not particularly heavy now, I don't think getting a lighter bike is going to be as helpful as you might want to believe.

And start slow with just doing body weight exercises and think of a 5-year plan.

But your query made me think of a bike rack that could be lowered to the ground or have one side rotate down to touch the ground so that bikes could simply be wheeled into the wheel grooves without lifting them off the ground at all.
Wiki This signature message sponsored by sscritic: Learn to fish.

User avatar
sk2101
Posts: 457
Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2013 4:54 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by sk2101 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:12 am

summerof42 wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:28 pm
Starfish wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:21 pm
Any bike except the aggressive road ones are hard to put on a car. The rack is the problem, not the bike.
As indicated, I am having trouble lifting the bike, I find it to be heavy for me. It's not the rack, the rack is perfectly fine. I bought the Saris bones 2 rack.
I suggest you consider a hitch mounted bike rack. The bikes stand lower vs the trunk mounted racks plus they are much easier to put in/out, so it may be the solution you need. Some models are the Kuat Transfer 2, Yakima Holdup.

ETA: If you want to upgrade the bike you can go with something like this, it will save you about 6lbs. It's hard to go further down in weight unless you are willing to spend thousands.
https://feltbicycles.com/collections/co ... tness-bike

onourway
Posts: 2520
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by onourway » Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:48 am

I disagree with others who say that 31lbs is already fairly light. It’s not. Especially for many women trying to load it on a rack. There is a tipping point in bike weights, and 31lbs is materially different than 25lbs which is entirely possible if you are willing to spend $600-800.

Unfortunately, it is true that bikes, especially entry-level hybrid bikes like your Raleigh are pretty well universally out of stock at the moment. You are unlikely to find anything this year. A bike like the Cannondale Quick 5 is ~26lbs and around $600. Similarly Trek has the FX2 with similar specs. Any town should have at least one Trek and Cannondale dealer.

Alternatively, if you are of smaller stature, you may fit a Woom 6 which is a 26” kids bike, but only 20lbs for $529. You’ll have to have someone put it together for you though, but these are pretty much impossible to beat from a quality/price/weight standpoint. https://us.woombikes.com/products/6

The last option is that you could buy a different rack. A platform hitch rack can be equipped with a ramp so you never need to lift the bike, however if you don’t yet have a hitch, the rack setup would cost considerably more than the bike. Spend the money on the better bike first.

caffeperfavore
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2015 11:45 am

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by caffeperfavore » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:25 am

I'm wondering if there's some sort of lightweight ramp type of thing that might help. Something like this: https://www.thule.com/en-us/bike-rack/a ... p-_-933401. Although, I realize this isn't right for the Saris Bones rack, just trying to convey the general idea. But in principle, I agree with the others that a better rack, paired with something like a ramp, might be a better, cheaper solution than a new bike.

With bikes, to add lightness you just need to add money (and exponentially more as you get lighter and lighter). Give me $12k and I'll find you a 14 lbs bike. :happy

But, if you don't mind spending a bit more it sounds like you're looking for another active/fitness bike. The Trek FX Sport 4 Women's https://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/bike ... Code=black seems to save you 8 lbs over your current bike without breaking the bank. To go any lighter (mind you, just saving another two or three lbs), you're probably looking at spending another $800 or so beyond this (again, the gains per $ are incremental past a certain point). However, without knowing what dealers are in your area, it's hard to recommend a specific bike. Also, you're just going to have to see them in person, how they feel, and how they fit to know. And of course, see how easy it is to lift them as I do wonder if a 25 lbs. bike or even a 23 lbs bike is going to make that much of a difference in getting it on the rack.

michaelingp
Posts: 339
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2017 8:46 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by michaelingp » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:41 pm

I'm in the camp that says you'll have to break the bank to get a bike that's significantly lighter. Also, I think the market for lighter bikes skews to a much younger audience, so you might be getting into a custom bike to get one that fits you. Instead, I think you should try to do what all of us aging seniors are trying to do, which is to adapt. Look at the mechanics of lifting. Are you just brute forcing it with your arms, or can you use your legs more? how about some kind of mechanism that uses the power of leverage to lift the bike? Or, you could back your car to a high curb, where you wouldn't have to lift as high. I don't know what kind of vehicle or rack you have, but I think in general hitch mounted racks are quite a bit lower than hatch or bumper mounts. It's very possible that you can lift 31 pounds to a certain height, but not easily lift it higher. Have you tried any other forums than BH? I'm sure a lot of people have your problem, and some have solved it. Good luck!

halfnine
Posts: 1245
Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:48 pm

Re: Suggestions for Women's light-weight bike

Post by halfnine » Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:45 pm

I think we really need to know what kind of weight you can lift. I'd start by taking the entire front wheel off which is fairly quick and easy to do and should probably remove around 4 lbs from the bicycle. Then see how difficult it would be to lift the bicycle onto the rack. With that information we can probably give better responses.

Post Reply