Sports & Recreation

21-speed bike from Canadian Tire not giving me a smooth pedaling experience

  • Last Updated:
  • Jun 25th, 2020 6:55 pm
[OP]
Newbie
May 15, 2020
3 posts
1 upvote

21-speed bike from Canadian Tire not giving me a smooth pedaling experience

I'm not really expert at bikes, and just bought a new bike from Canadian Tire after more than 10 years.

I bought a Dual Suspension mountain bike that has 21 speed (according to the specs) and Shimano derailleurs.

The issue that I'm having is that I feel the bike is very slow and it's not that easy to pedal comfortably. There is this gear on the right handle that includes 7 speed adjustment, and one gear on the left side that includes 3 speed adjustments. So where are the other 11 speed adjustments?!

Are there any tips that I can make my bike experience more smooth and make it go faster?

I would appreciate any help.
33 replies
Deal Addict
Sep 29, 2004
4419 posts
848 upvotes
Toronto
Supercycle bikes are heavy cause the frame is made of steel, tires are thick, the suspension adds weight to the bike. There is no aerodynamics. If you ride on straight paved road, it's going to feel like a tank.

The front derailleurs, the smaller chain rings means less resistance to pedal, the bigger rings means it will get harder to pedal.
The rear derailleurs, the smaller the rings on the cassette when you shift gets harder to pedal and the bigger rings becomes much easier to pedal.
If ya understand that?
Last edited by Mr. Robo on May 16th, 2020 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Moderator
Sep 27, 2003
10165 posts
2730 upvotes
Newmarket
SuperCycle is very entry level in terms of quality. To make matters worse, it was assembled by an "inventory clerk" rather than a bike mechanic. So it is unlikely the bike was properly tuned when assembled. Even if it was, after riding on it for a few hours, cables will stretch requiring a quick tune / adjustment to get it back to normal.

As for "slowness"? It could be you, it could be the weight of the bike, it could be both.

21 speeds = 7 in the rear + 3 in the front = 21 combinations of "speeds".

Take it to a bike shop, get it tuned up, and try to enjoy the bike.

rfd-cycling-thread-official-583240/ - Good thread here with a wealth of cycling knowledge.
RFD Forums Moderator
Deal Expert
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Jan 27, 2004
43165 posts
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T.O. Lotto Captain
DuttyH75671 wrote: I'm not really expert at bikes, and just bought a new bike from Canadian Tire after more than 10 years.

I bought a Dual Suspension mountain bike that has 21 speed (according to the specs) and Shimano derailleurs.

The issue that I'm having is that I feel the bike is very slow and it's not that easy to pedal comfortably. There is this gear on the right handle that includes 7 speed adjustment, and one gear on the left side that includes 3 speed adjustments. So where are the other 11 speed adjustments?!

Are there any tips that I can make my bike experience more smooth and make it go faster?

I would appreciate any help.
Bikes from Canadian tire are considered entry level bikes. Poor quality, poor assembly, etc.

Thats the reason why the cheapest bike at a dedicated bike shop is $500 for some entry level hybrid. But it’ll still ride waaaaay better then a Canadian Tire bike.
Deal Addict
Jul 17, 2009
1161 posts
328 upvotes
its a heavy bike, you get use to it. when you do get use to it you will still be slower than others, but not a big deal
Deal Addict
Jun 27, 2006
1239 posts
1173 upvotes
Toronto
OP, nothing to add on the actual bike. It is what it is.

You might want to check out what gearing you are using when you say "it's not that easy to pedal comfortably." Guessing you might be in the big ring up front which will be harder to pedal; especially when you are unsure of how the 21 gears are set up. Get to the smallest chainring in the front and you will find pedaling a little easier.
Deal Expert
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Apr 16, 2002
20947 posts
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Toronto
Can you refund and get a better bike from a bike shop instead?
Things changed now that I’m a father, I can’t live my life a quarter mile at a time anymore.
[OP]
Newbie
May 15, 2020
3 posts
1 upvote
sprung wrote: Can you refund and get a better bike from a bike shop instead?
No I don't think so. They told me there's no refund for bikes, so I didn't give it a try.
Member
Mar 1, 2020
300 posts
130 upvotes
GTA West
Op, given what's done is done, try to use the easiest pedalling gear for you, one that's not too easy nor too hard... Start from there... Get stronger....

Next, you may want to have it tuned later, IF, you still are Keen on cycling... Otherwise at least you didn't spend a "fortune"on a bike...

Finally, if you're still Keen on riding a better bike, then yes, check out the RFD cycling thread or just ask in that thread... But for now, I suspect you're not used to riding, muscles aren't used to it, etc etc.... You may want to find a better FIT too... How? YouTube it to get an estimate... Adjust seats etc... I wouldn't go to a bike shop yet to have it adjusted as it'll cost you $ and for your bike, it's not worth it... Try to make the most of it now that you can't return it...
Deal Guru
User avatar
Oct 5, 2008
12923 posts
6969 upvotes
Toronto
No surprise whatsoever.

It's a BSO (bike shaped object) rather than an actual bike.

Prior thread warning another member to not buy the same/similar bike:

opinion-ccm-bike-2374968/
Sr. Member
Nov 10, 2003
766 posts
160 upvotes
OP, as with others in this thread, this isn't one of the best bikes out there, but if it's within your budget, with some reasonable maintenance, you'll get some good rides with it over the years.

With regards to it riding slow, an easy thing to check is if the brakes are grabbing the wheels. First, lift the front end of the bike up and spin the front wheel. It should spin freely without any grabbing by the brakes. Then pick up the back end and spin the rear wheel CLOCKWISE. This wheel should also spin freely. If either of the wheels seems to slow down very quickly, take a look to see if any of the brake pads are touching the rim the brakes are not engaged. If so, you can adjust the brakes yourself if you have the right tools or take it back to Canadian Tire and ask to have them adjust it (I assume this should be free as it wasn't adjusted properly on assembly).

The bike could also be slow or difficult to pedal because you aren't using the right gear for the ride. For the easiest pedaling effort or going up hill, you want the chain to be on the smallest cog in the front and largest cog in the back. For maximum speed but also the hardest to pedal, you want to be on the largest cog in the front and the smallest cog in the rear. Changing the gears to get to one of the settings just mentioned and any combination in between is pretty easy - here's a Youtube video on how to do it: Changing Gears.

Youtube also has lots of video tutorials to help you understand bikes and their maintenance.

Good luck and congrats on the new bike!
Sr. Member
Aug 15, 2009
839 posts
549 upvotes
Montreal
Dual suspension swings the shit out of every peddling (That's why I got a front suspension and most of the time I lock it), heavy bike, heavy wheels, not properly setup for you height and ride stance, etc., gives you the worst ride ever.
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Nov 14, 2003
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Gotham
DuttyH75671 wrote: I'm not really expert at bikes, and just bought a new bike from Canadian Tire after more than 10 years.

I bought a Dual Suspension mountain bike that has 21 speed (according to the specs) and Shimano derailleurs.

The issue that I'm having is that I feel the bike is very slow and it's not that easy to pedal comfortably. There is this gear on the right handle that includes 7 speed adjustment, and one gear on the left side that includes 3 speed adjustments. So where are the other 11 speed adjustments?!

Are there any tips that I can make my bike experience more smooth and make it go faster?

I would appreciate any help.
Only go downhill. Astonished FaceFace With Tears Of Joy

There is actually a genre of mountain biking called downhill. It usually happens in ski resorts where chairlifts and/or gondolas take the rider and bikes up and you ride down, gravity assisted. It's a pretty intense recreation. Your Crappy Tire special would probably be finished off on the first ride.

If you cannot return the bike, there is not much you can do. The frame and components weigh a ton I bet. The heavier it is, the harder it is the climb an incline. You could probably get really fit riding this bike uphill.
elpaso wrote: Dual suspension swings the shit out of every peddling (That's why I got a front suspension and most of the time I lock it), heavy bike, heavy wheels, not properly setup for you height and ride stance, etc., gives you the worst ride ever.
Have you ever tried a Specialized with a Fox Brain shock - it is called Specialized Brain Technology now. I have a ten year old Stumpjumper with the Fox Brain Fade rear shock and it changed mountain biking for me. I can climb bumpy hills without having the rear wheel bounce.
Deal Guru
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Mar 31, 2008
11388 posts
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Toronto
I bought those bikes in the 80s and 90s, and they were way 'faster'. But since WTO China in early 2000s, quality has gone down significantly. Yea, they were heavy but they were like tanks before. And went fast. But buying one around 2010, it was noticeably degraded in quality, despite it still being heavy, but lacked that feeling of momentum. And yes, it felt more flimsy. Prices of those things haven't changed much in nearly 30 year so that was paid for in quality.

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