Starter "Actual" Track bike

I am thinking of starting riding track if I stay here in the Bay Area come winter. If so I will be in the market for a actual track bike, I am looking for something of a starter bike but obviously not something I will need to upgrade in a while. Any suggestions for me to keep an eye out for besides the obvious. I would prefer getting something used and build it up mainly because of money issues.

don’t a lot of tracks use fuji tracks as rentals? go check out what your local track has for their rental fleet (if any) and see if they sell them after a few seasons. or get a similar bike and you’ll be competitive with the rest of the pack.

whats your budget look like?

Fitness is more of a factor in 4/5’s than your equipment… just worry about geometry and fit and less about what materials your bike is or how much ‘performance’ you’re getting out fo it.

Then spend the rest of your dough on a good set of tubulars and clipless pedals.

Not sure a lot of it depends on how much I will get for graduation/my birthday/jesus’ birthday. My guess is probably about 600-700 for the frame. Maybe more, but I am not sure about spending any more than that for starting a sport. This is a bike I would like to constantly be building up and making better as I got faster.

Well this was more of my concern, I don’t want to get something too crazy just because I recognize the name.

[quote=“tarckatina”]
Then spend the rest of your dough on a good set of tubulars and clipless pedals.[/quote]

Noted. Wheels for sure, didn’t think about pedals.

Honestly, get a Pista or Kilo TT or something similar. Like Andre said, starting out, you’re not gonna notice much performance enhancement by spending more money on a nicer bike. Start simple, get in shape, then start thinking about upgrades, better frames, etc.

If it’s going to be a track dedicated frame, brass knuckle. I know it’s not “pretty” but for the coin it costs its a plenty nice frame. There isnt much reason at that level to be building up a 700 dollar frame, Put the remaining coin into a set of rollers, a decent wheelset and pedals (as mentioned before) and parts to build it up. Maybe even a carbon fork.

Already got rollers!

The more I think about it the frame is the thing I should be worried about least. This is why I ask y’all instead of just starting to look at bikes. I love tarck.

Well yeah aside from the frame fitting and being geometry appropriate for your track, don’t worry too much about it. I raced on my KHS this season and did good… and those frames are just Kilo TT’s.

Clipless pedals WILL give you a performance upgrade that you’ll feel though because you get to take advantage of the full pedal stroke and use a stiffer shoe. If you get a good pair of pedals/shoes now you don’t have to worry about upgrading later.

Crankset wise, getting a true track crank with 144BCD means you’re running the same shit as everyone else and will have an easier time burrowing chainrings if you have to.

Wheels are more important than the frame for now so if you get a decent set of tubulars now, they can become your training wheels later on if/when you upgrade to something nicer/more aerodynamiic. I went from running dual clinchers, to clincher rear/tubbie front to dual tubulars this season on the track and noticed a nice difference each time I’d add more tubular into the equation… and I was using nice clinchers like GP 4000’s…

More important than all of this is technique and fitness. Tecnnique wise, atleast at a steep track like Alpenrose (I haven’t ridden anything else) you have to learn to support yourself with your core especially while hammering it through the turns and strong abs come in handy for that. Learning to ride in tight pacelines and shoulder to shoulder with others is also vital. And being able to hold a line is mandatory, but most importantly being able to relax and not be all shaky and squirrelly…

I am hesitant against tubular. I know they will make me much faster but I am still going to have to ride to and from the caltrain station about 15 blocks. It isn’t too bad but I hesitate to ride tubulars across nasty SF streets.

so throw your tubies on your bag and ride down there, swap wheels. Swap again for the ride home.

so throw your tubies on your bag and ride down there, swap wheels. Swap again for the ride home.[/quote]

You just have the solution to all my problems tarck.
Thats if I have extra wheels (which I probably will if I get the kilo TT pro from bikedirect.com)

My advice for a budget:
$250 to $300 for a frameset
about $130 for shoes
<$100 for pedals (105 SPD-SL’s are pretty nice for the price)
Remainder for Jersey and shorts (if you find a team, you may be able to get these for free. A lot of teams don’t care if you’re fast, they just want you to attend races/rides on a regular basis)

What other components do you have? Or are you getting those with other money?

Be on the lookout on ebay. I got a great frame from Fyxomatosis last year for only $500. It would have carried me to a pretty high level before I had to get a new one. The deals are always out there (unless you’re looking for a pista concept).

so throw your tubies on your bag and ride down there, swap wheels. Swap again for the ride home.[/quote]

You just have the solution to all my problems tarck.
Thats if I have extra wheels (which I probably will if I get the kilo TT pro from bikedirect.com)[/quote]

by extras I mean the ones on your current whip, I’m assuming you have at least a cheap pair of clinchers running around now, so ride em to the track and swap yo parts. You will probably end up carrying cogs/chainrings/tools as well, so taking a bag is a good idea anyways.

[quote=“TimArchy”]My advice for a budget:
$250 to $300 for a frameset
about $130 for shoes
<$100 for pedals (105 SPD-SL’s are pretty nice for the price)
Remainder for Jersey and shorts (if you find a team, you may be able to get these for free. A lot of teams don’t care if you’re fast, they just want you to attend races/rides on a regular basis)

What other components do you have? Or are you getting those with other money?

Be on the lookout on ebay. I got a great frame from Fyxomatosis last year for only $500. It would have carried me to a pretty high level before I had to get a new one. The deals are always out there (unless you’re looking for a pista concept).[/quote]

Have my brother’s old kit from his team back home in Louisiana, and its easy for him to get me clothing from his bike shop for cheap.
Everything is being bought with the same money and I really don’ have anything on my other bikes that is worth swapping over. I have the IRO drivetrain kit on one and the stock specialized drivetrain on the other.

I think the best price for an “actual” track frame is this Leader. A few people were racing these this year, and everyone seemed to love it. I may end up getting one to replace my LeMond, depending on what kind of bargains I can find this winter.

Oh, and that’s something else - track bikes are pretty cheap right now. I’ve passed on two Fuji Track Pros in my size which sold for $400-$500 complete, and I can only imagine that it’s the same across the board. Lots of people are going to be selling their bikes on eBay/Craigslist over the next few months, as winter sets in and Christmas/heating bill start arriving. Keep an eye out for good deals there.

I am thinking about getting in to track riding/racing myself thanks to tarkbike.com. Keep the suggestions coming I just got one of the Alien GB frames and am thinking about using it for the track, training (i need a lot) and as my sunny day bike. As some of you know it is going to be my winter build project.

Should we start a Tarckbile racing team. even if I dont race I can be a manager/ water boy!! :bear:

I agree on the Leader 721-TR. It’s cheap, light and has good geometry. I can stand by the durability too because I jump around and do other wack stuff on my 720-TR.

man, why doesnt portland have an indoor track, that’d be badass!