Ride the Puddles

Trek 1000?

I didn’t intend to add this. But it is, by far, the most viewed page on Because of it’s popularity, I’m adding it here to make it more readily available to more people.

It’s not actually intended specifically as a review of the Trek 1000, but as an example of and complaint against what I consider the poor quality of low-end Trek (and Shimano) products in general.

It is also less a warning against buying a specific product than it is an admonition to be aware of the quality and reliability of whatever you’re buying.

But use it as you will. I hope you’ll find it helpful in some way.


Someone over at asked for thoughts regarding the purchase of a low end Trek road bike, the Trek 1000.

I bought a low end Trek mountain bike (the Trek 3700) a couple years back. I’ve been hugely disappointed with it and haven’t stopped hitting myself in the head for not going out of my way to instead get the Specialized Hardrock Sport.

The low end shifters and derailleurs cause significant lag time between when you shift the lever and when the actual shift occurs, it’s both frustrating and unsafe.

I ride “Rails to Trails” or roads, so there is no heavy abuse and there was no reason for the forks to break, but they did. Another unsafe condition caused by cheap (as opposed to simply inexpensive) parts.

I also know of a local bike shop owner, Spokes Cyclery in Naperville, IL, that stopped carrying Treks because customers had too many similar issues to the ones I just mentioned.

There are so many options out there that I can’t imagine ever again wasting my money on a Trek.

I DID write them, politely, about the problems I’ve had. That was about a year ago. They’ve never responded. You can guess that I’m not especially impressed with their customer service, either.

* I get a few hundred visits per week just for this article, so I found a link to a customer review site.

Notice that while the recommendations themselves are often 3, 4 and 5 stars, the ratings of many of the positive reviews is below 3 (which means that a lot of customers disagree with the high reviews).

What IS consistent is the view that the tires, rims, tape, brakes, shifters, “components” and saddle are of low quality, or are difficult to use or that they break easily or that they need replacement quickly or frequently. This reflects what I mentioned above regarding cheap parts, not just inexpensive parts.

The single bright spot across the board is the frame and it’s stiffness, which I’ve found no cause to contradict in my 3700 (though the welds are big and ugly).

Low price? Considering the remarkable low quality of seemingly everything except the frame, I have to believe that the price isn’t nearly low enough.

You might think that things have changed now that the 1000 is no longer produced, but the new Trek 1.2 uses the same groupo (Shimano Sora). So if you’re considering buying one of those you should be aware that you may face the same issues as buyers of the 1000.

Here are some reviews on the Sora rear derailleur that come on the Trek 1000 and it’s replacement, the Trek 1.2, Road Bike Review and Bike Trials

Chief criticisms:

From Road Bike Review:

Needs frequent adjustment
Extremely heavy
Performs extremely poorly under load
Flexes severely under load occasionally even entering the spokes (which is why you have a “dork disk”, so don’t remove that if your bike has low end parts).

From Bike Trials:

Bends / Breaks easily

The odd thing in both sets of reviews is that people both claim that it’s a good product AND that it breaks easily and needs too-frequent adjustments. Read them and make your own decision.

Another note of caution: Giant produces bikes for Trek. Will you find similar defects in Giant’s product line? Personally, knowing what poor products they build for Trek I’d be more than a little leary in trusting anything from them.

I have a rule of thumb when looking for a bike (and I look a lot either for myself or for the site): If you find a bike that has a groupo or individual parts that are lower than Shimano 105 on road bikes or lower than Deore LX on mountain bikes (Tiagra, Sora, 2200, Tourney, SIS, Deore, Alivio, Acera) run away. If the manufacturor (not just Trek, but anyone) is cutting corners there, they are likely cutting them in several other important areas. As far as performance goes 105 and Deore LX are a baseline.

The difference in groupos (component sets) higher than that is more in the area of weight than performance. Below that performance and reliability drop off drastically. If you’re looking at bikes with SRAM groupos then X7 should be your baseline for mountain bikes, Rival in road bikes.

Bikeshop sales people may tell you how great the lower groupos are while you’re shopping for a bike, but they’re story changes the first time you bring the bike in after that. Then it’s, “You might want to think about upgrading this.”.

Maybe you can’t afford a bike with what I consider baseline quality and reliability, but you should at least be aware of what you’re really getting and what you can expect from it.


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