Saturday, January 31, 2009

Specialized Sequoia

Specialized Sequoia road bike.Our cycling adventure continues. It became clear that the first bike we bought for Alёna needed to be replaced. We wanted something in the similar class of what Brian landed me.

Brian gave me a few pointers in respect to what to look for — Shimano componens, preferable 105 or higher. Aluminum frame, carbon fiber fork. The frame should be around 56cm — which pretty much excludes all feminine bikes.

Specialized logo.I ended up doing a lot of reading and researching. First we started looking for used bikes on eBay and Craigslist — nothing decent was showing up. Then I decided to get a no-name bike from an online source. After that I thought that we’d rather pay more money for a bike from a company that stands behind their product. And the smartest decision of all was to actually avoid buying online and just got to a local shop.

Specialized Sequoia.And exactly that we did yesterday after work. We happen to be lucky to have a cycling store 5 minutes away from us with a great reputation which people come to visit from all parts of NYC. And after our experience there we know why.

Shimano Tiagra rear derailleur.After my research online I decided that Cannondale CAAD9 5 would be our choice. A lot of great reviews, even though it was a bit more than we wanted to spend originally. The local store of ours also quoted us the lowest price out of all the stores I called in the area — $1225.

When we got to the store though the store owner suggested a different brand — Specialized. The reason was that we needed to get a rather large frame for Alёna’s legs, but that would make the reach (distance to the handle bars) too big. This particular frame actually had a shorter top tube length.

Shimano Sora brake and shift levers.He spent over an hour with us showing us different models and letting Alёna try them. The one he recommended was very comfortable for her. After that he took a bunch of measurements on some special machine to make sure it’d be just right for our pickup the day after.

The only thing that I wasn’t sure about was the components. They were still Shimano parts, but not 105, but a step or 2 lower that that — Tiagra and Sora. They also did have the same exact frame with 105 components, but it was over $300 more and the owner was pretty damn sure that I don’t need to spend that money. He said that it was my decision, but he was sure that the cheaper version was perfect for Alёna and there was absolutely no reason for us spend more money.

Rear wheel.We were convinced — Specialized Sequoia is what we went with. It cost us $769.

Today we came back and he had the bike ready, fitted for Alёna. He took it outside and made Alёna ride it 6 or 7 times back and forth making small adjustments, making sure it was perfect. Even if we could find this bike cheaper somewhere online the service that was provided to us was just invaluable. I can’t remember having such a satisfying experience buying anything.

Specialized logo.We bought a couple of other accessories — helmets, some padded shorts, bells and went out for a ride on the bicycle path near Belt Pkwy. We had an awesome time. Lots of fun and enjoyment, even though the weather was horribly cold.

If it wouldn’t be for our first cheap bike buy and Brian landing me a great bike — we would never have a clue how much a good bike means. I’m very thankful for all the help Brian has provided.
In: Gadgets & Gear   Tags: , , , ,
Time: 20:44   Comments: 6 Comments   Post a Comment  
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Friday, January 2, 2009

New Year Gifts

Shiseido Zen perfume. My gift to Alёna for New Year.The New Year celebration flew by in an instance, as everything else seems to do. First thing we know we’re eating dinner and then hour by hour goes by and it’s time to count down the last ten seconds of the year.

Casio Pathfinder PAW1500T-7V. Alёna's gift to me on New Year.At midnight exactly we pop the bottle of champaign open, shoot some firecrackers and poppers and then toast the new year. After a small desert my favorite parts starts — gift giving and receiving. We had a mountain of gifts under our Christmas tree.

Casio Baby G Sweet Poison BG2000BC-1 watch for Alёna.We all got a lot of stuff. Alёna got a perfume that she wanted — Shiseido Zen and a pair of sports wrist watches for mountain climbing and such. I got Casio Pathfinder 1500, the one with titanium bracelet. The watch has a lot of functions — compass, altimeter, barometer, temperature sensor beside other things.

Our full collection — Voyager, DS9 and TNG.My parents and Lina got us a whole bunch of Star Trek seasons of Voyager and The Next Generations. Now we a full set of each.

Some colorful pottery from my aunt.Linka also got us some towels with custom embroidered names. And my aunt got as some very colorful serving dishes. Good holiday with a lot of fun New Year is. My favorite. Too bad it is over so quickly.
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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year 2009

Happy New Year 2009!To our family & friends.

We spent a part of our weekend trying to come up with a card for New Year to congratulate all of you with an incoming 2009. We want to wish you, first of all, great health as with good health we can achieve anything else we set our mind to. And after that we wish you to reach or get closer to reaching your dreams in the new year. Have a happy New Year!

P.S. We hope you like our photo card — we took the photo ourselves.
In: Life In General   Tags: , , ,
Time: 12:26   Comments: 14 Comments   Post a Comment  
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