Cruisin' in Newport
This is my first post on this board. It seems like a friendly, laid back community thus far, unless you happen to be talking about a motorist afflicted with the road rage, of course.
I sat on a Rat Rod cruiser from Electra Bikes a coupla years ago and almost took it home that day. It's been at the back of my mind since then. I live in Newport, RI (which is on a fairly small island) and would like to use it for mild hills, commuting 4 or 5 miles to work, etc.
This bike is offered with the Shimano 3speed nexus rear hub, or with a single speed. But I dont know or trust the 3 speed yet, due to my experience with 3speed english bikes. I had one when I was younger and it had a tendency to come completely out of gear, and if I was pushing hard up a hill this usually resulted with my ribcage hitting the handlebar. Does anyone have experience with these hubs? If the front chainring was 44t and the rear cassette 22t, how would first gear compare to the old ten speeds that got darn near 1:1 in first?
Is the added complication worth the 2 extra gears? Does anyone have experience with this brand of bike, in terms of build quality, component life, etc? It seemed to fit like a dream when I sat on it in the shop, but I'll make sure it's ok before slapping the money on the barrelhead. Also, this bike doesnt come with reflectors. Where is the most effective place to put the reflectors on a bike to be seen? I've noticed that a lot of RI'ers dont even notice my CAR, so a bike might be trouble around here.. Maybe a light bar from a police car would help?
Thanks for any/all help, and I look forward to visiting this community often. -Ed