In the world of speed road bikes not all options are created equally. Whether you are looking for an entry-level unit or a professional piece of equipment, you need to be able to tell the good from the bad.
The Vilano Aluminum Road Bike 21 Speed Shimano is a roadster that is priced like an entry-level model. The truth is that this is not just any entry-level model, it rides so much better. Without looking at just surface details let’s take a deeper look into what makes this such a wonderful bike for those that want to hit the roads, trails, or sidewalks in their home town.
Why A Shimano?
When it comes time to snag your first road bike you will definitely want to opt for something a little smoother, more accurate, and easy to handle than many of the cheap entry-level models. If those traits have climbed your list of importance then you should quit looking for bikes right now!
This 21 Speed Aluminum Shimano is the lightest in its class. The frame itself weighs in at a tick over 24 pounds. You would think that this light frame would come at the expense of maneuverability or sturdiness but it is simply not the case. As far as entry-level bikes go, it is hard to beat the Shimano for its price point and obvious perks. Let’s take a look at some of those great features.
The Shimano Offers Usage Flexibility!
One of my favorite things about this bike is the fact that it is so usable for so many different things. Where I live you need to be able to get around without catering to traffic. This Vilano model bicycle has the weight behind it to easily maneuver crowded paths, sidewalks, and roads. I also love that it is easy to handle going up hills. With the 21 speed gearshift right in the center of the column I can easily click to the next setting that I need. This makes traversing different sorts of terrain as easy as giving the thumbs up.
One of the primary reasons many people will end up buying the Shimano is for the same reason that I got it: fitness. I wanted to be able to unpack a bike, put it together, and hit the road for hundreds of miles before having to tend to it. I was able to ride it around town for close to 400 miles before having to adjust anything and what I had to adjust I had anticipated: the tires.
Be Wary of the Stock Tires
The stock tires on this bike will get you on the pavement but they won’t keep you there. They are 200c by 25c and definitely not built to last. So my suggestion to prospective buyers is to pay attention to other tire options before you finish shopping. You’ll have to exchange them eventually so consider doing it before you get riding.
Some Assembly Required!
When you purchase your 21 Speed Shimano you will find out pretty quickly why the box is so small. If you are like me then you’ll need to grab an instruction manual and some tools and prepare for an hour or two of sweat while you put the bike together.
Don’t worry though; the actual act isn’t as difficult as you might think. You will need to add the tires to the bike frame, the gear shifts onto the bars and pedals and the handle bars right onto the neck. After that you just have to add a few cables, following Vilano’s easy to read instructions, and you will be ready to hop on your bike and go.
After a few miles of hard riding you might need to spend some time adjusting the brakes and derailleurs while giving the whole product a once over. If you don’t feel comfortable doing the tuning yourself then take it to a local bike shop. Getting your bike properly tuned can do wonders for your riding experience and long-term usage. An improperly tuned bike will get damaged and break down quicker than anticipated.
Proper Maintenance Will Keep You Riding
Like many things in life you tend to get what you give. For a sub $300 bike, with proper care, you can make this thing feel and last as long as the $1000 urban models that are super popular around the country. Make sure to keep an eye on the health of your chains, patch up tire holes quickly, and keep the bike tuned up by a professional. The best way to keep up to date on bike maintenance is to dive straight into the hobby. Check out message boards and online videos for guides on how to properly maintain your vehicle.
Vilano Customer Service is Top Notch
On the rare occasion that you’ll get a bike not up to your standards you can easily reach out to Vilano’s Customer Service. The bike that I had ordered was marred by a few scratches during its shipment. It wasn’t anything serious but I’d rather scratch the bike myself than get one that was already scratched up. Anyways, I emailed their support and had a new bike being sent out within a few days. All in all it isn’t a huge thing because you don’t want to anticipate issues, but it’s nice to know that they are willing to help.
As you can see there are many reasons to love the Vilano Aluminum Road Bike 21 Speed Shimano. I found that the combination of quality, features, and price to be too enticing to pass up. I figured that my Shimano would last me only a little bit as it was priced like an entry-level model but it seems like that won’t be the case. I figure with good care and no crazy accidents that I will easily be using this bike for the next five or so years. It’s easy to assemble, easy to maintain, and easy to ride. All in all I’d give the bike a solid 4.5/5 with my biggest detraction being the quality of the stock tires.