Schwinn Network 3.0 700C
When I set out on a bike ride I never know exactly where it’s going to take me and I wouldn’t have it any other way. The reason I love to ride a bike is because of the freedom it offers me, so I let the wheels take me wherever that may be. In fact, I’m a firm believer that planning a route before you leave the house takes all the fun out of it – unless, of course, you’re not riding your bike for pleasure that day. I also want my bike to be as versatile as I am, and that’s why a hybrid bike such as the Schwinn Men’s Network 3.0 700C can be a great choice.
Not only is this bike versatile enough to operate in a variety of situations, it’s also quite reasonably priced at under $300. That fits well within the budget that I have in mind and I’m definitely putting this bike on my short list. The only thing that really concerned me with this model was whether or not it could handle a little bit of off-roading, and it seems to be versatile enough to handle some trails.
Integrated Shimano Reliability
One of the things that makes this bike so versatile is the fact that it has a Shimano 21-speed derailleur and EZ fire shifters. When it comes to gears and brakes on bicycles Shimano is one of the most recognized names, and that’s because they always make a quality product. If versatility is what you’re looking for it’s great to have 21 speeds to choose from, and with this bike’s quick trigger shifters you have the ability to change gears in an instant. That comes in very handy when you’re switching from the neighborhood streets to the bike path.
As I’ve already mentioned, when I go for a ride I like to mix it up. I start out running around the neighborhood for a little bit, but I often soon find myself hitting the local bike path for a while as well. I don’t want to be limited in where I can ride my bike, and that’s why I was quite happy to find that this bike has a Shimano 21-speed derailleur.
Strong Frame and Support
Another great feature of this Schwinn men’s hybrid bike is that it has an aluminum 18’ frame. Aluminum is much lighter than the traditional steel used for bicycles, but it doesn’t sacrifice anything in the strength category. This bike is not only lightweight, it’s also designed to handle a challenging ride. The frame isn’t the only thing you need to worry about on a long ride, though – you also want to know that your bike can handle the unexpected bumps in the road. That’s where the Schwinn suspension fork comes in. This fork is designed to absorb the shock of an unexpected bump and lets you continue on your way without slowing down.
Comfort Isn’t Forgotten
If you’re doing most of your riding on the trails you’ll spend a lot of time standing up on the pedals, but not so much when you’re riding on the city streets. The great thing about a hybrid bike like this is that is designed to handle different conditions. When you’re riding for a couple of miles on a flat, paved road you probably won’t do a lot of standing up on the pedals, which means you want to be comfortable. This bike has a nicely-padded seat for comfort; underneath that seat is a suspension seat post, which is ideal for cushioning the blow of the hard pavement underneath you.
Positioning Is Everything
I had a typing teacher many years ago (Yes, I’m old enough to have had a typing teacher) and she was always bugging us about our posture. According to this teacher good posture was not only essential for typing, it was also important for good health. I’ve learned over the years that my teacher was actually right – she wasn’t just trying to drive us all crazy.
When you’re riding a bike, good posture is just as important, if you want to avoid injury. This bike is designed to keep you in a nice, straight upright position as you ride. The seat is lower than the handlebar level and the handlebars are in a sweptback position to encourage good posture. If your main concern is speed this may not be the best design, but it’s generally a good compromise if you’re looking to hit a good pace and save your back in the process.
Now for the Problems
A number of customers have complained about the quality of the wheels and have even suggested they’re not aligned properly, which leads to easy punctures. That’s a big concern if you’re going on long rides, as you’re bound to come across a few items on the road that will test the quality of your tires.
The other thing that concerns me about this bike also has to do with the wheels. These rims are actually quite thin, which makes them pretty good for the road but a little suspect for off-road trails. Unfortunately, that is the compromise you make when you choose a hybrid bike, so that doesn’t make this model any different than other hybrid bikes you might be considering.
Not a Bad Deal
The Schwinn Network 3.0 700C isn’t perfect by any means, but it’s a pretty good bike for a model that’s under $300. It combines some of the best features of a mountain bike and a street bike, as you would expect in a hybrid bike, and it seems capable of handling some adverse conditions. It’s one I’ve definitely got my eye on.