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Benportrait1I am sorry again (for anyone that really cares) for my lack of writing, but following the death of my old laptop (RIP Steam Engine) and the replacement suffering many, many, many issues, I haven’t been able to write a piece that has been formulating in my head for a good couple of weeks now. So, I hope you enjoy.

Ben's Bike 1We have all bought something and regretted it, haven’t we? No? Just me? Well anyway, this summer I decided that I would buy a bike to speed up the 25 minute trek from my new house to University. Being a gullible fool, I bought a ‘Road Bike’ which was, without exaggerating, one of the worst decisions I have ever made. In this article I am going to give you some valuable consumer advice, along with some useful pictures to break up the monotony of my moaning (by which I mean I am going to rant about my own stupidity. Unless you are interested in buying the bike from me, in which case, it is a brilliant piece of engineering).

Firstly, the handle bars. My bike had the curvy handle bars and they are without doubt the most unusable things ever. The curve in the handle bar causes the rider to sit in the ‘racing position’, with your head about a foot in front of the bars themselves. Riding in this awkward position means that any tiny correction you will have to make on the handle bars is amplified 100 fold, causing (in my case anyway) some pretty horrific weaving. The handle bars are also incredibly hard, making riding in a normal position equally uncomfortable. The curve and break lever means that adding extra padding/strapping to the bars is more trouble than it’s worth.

Ben's Bike 3

Also, the seat, although replaceable, is too hard to sit on for any prolonged period of time.

Ben's Bike 2

The lack of any suspension makes any road cycling (which is what the bloody thing is made for) incredibly uncomfortable. Without any exaggeration, I went out for a cycle and ended up looking like I was riding one of those pneumatic drills. Also, the lack of suspension isn’t exactly kind to a gentleman-specific-area (if you catch my drift), and this along with rock-hard handle bars makes cycling for any prolonged period of time incredibly uncomfortable.

Finally, the tyres. As I said before, they are incredibly thin racing tyres and as a result you spend more time pumping the things up then actually riding the bike. I know I could buy some thicker tyres and put them on the bike, but it took me ages to get the quick-release front tyre on in the first place, so I don’t ever intend on taking the thing off ever again.

I spent £120 on it (not including delivery), which in the grand scheme of things isn’t a huge amount of money for a bike. But if you were to look at the amount of money I spent over the last 3 days of my summer holiday (I am not going to say how much I had to fork out, but trust me, it was a lot. And for a tight git like me, it was painful to wave goodbye to so much money) you would understand why I regret spend the amount of money I did on the bike.

-Ben

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