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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 09-04-05, 11:10 AM   #1
Johnny Torres
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Saludos !!! New here.

Greetings from Puerto Rico !!!
Hi, I am planing to start pedaling to work, and while web-searching for info on the matter, found this Forum. I read a few threads and I`m hooked to it. People write very friendly and enthusiastic.
My ride will be 18 miles each leg, half flat, half hill roads. I did it once ( one way ) and did it in 75 minutes, riding a cheap MTB.
I have ridden bikes all my life and love riding, plus I love to be phisically fit.
I have probably a million questions about this, but I`m not going to ask today, I feel too newby here, so please suggest if you wish, ANY IDEAS WELCOME !!!
I`m 43y, 5-8", 170lbs.
Also have ridden motorcycles to work all my life, every day, last a Ducati 900SS, but a recent divorce left me broke and eager to find $ wherever I can, ( had to sell the moto too ), plus I need the excersise and I know pedaling will help me feel better emotionally.
Please advice !!!
Johnny
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Old 09-04-05, 12:13 PM   #2
Turbonium
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sad about that recent divorce...
my parents devorced also. i used biking as a way to clear my mind before going to school. you are lucky that you won't get snow down there, so all year biking is plosible.

you sold your motocycle, so does this mean you are motor free?
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Old 09-04-05, 03:04 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Torres
Greetings from Puerto Rico !!!
Hi, I am planing to start pedaling to work, and while web-searching for info on the matter, found this Forum. I read a few threads and I`m hooked to it. People write very friendly and enthusiastic.
My ride will be 18 miles each leg, half flat, half hill roads. I did it once ( one way ) and did it in 75 minutes, riding a cheap MTB.
I have ridden bikes all my life and love riding, plus I love to be phisically fit.
I have probably a million questions about this, but I`m not going to ask today, I feel too newby here, so please suggest if you wish, ANY IDEAS WELCOME !!!
I`m 43y, 5-8", 170lbs.
Also have ridden motorcycles to work all my life, every day, last a Ducati 900SS, but a recent divorce left me broke and eager to find $ wherever I can, ( had to sell the moto too ), plus I need the excersise and I know pedaling will help me feel better emotionally.
Please advice !!!
Johnny
Hello, Johnny, how are you. I would suggest spending a few more dollars on a city bike or a road bike. You will be more comfortable period. You will thank me later.
A mountain bike let alone a cheap one is not something to ride for 75 minutes each way. However if that is your only option find the smallest width size tire that will fit on your rim and with a smooth tread (slick) on it. Cuidate.

By the way I am in Santo Domingo, DR. Good Luck.
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Old 09-04-05, 09:53 PM   #4
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Hola amigo, welcome to the forums and the crazy world of bicycle commuting, the only guarantee is that you'll have mucho fun

I'm from Uruguay but have lived in Sydney Australia since the age of seven.
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Old 09-05-05, 07:33 AM   #5
Johnny Torres
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Thanks for the friendly welcome !!!

TURBONIUM, Youre right, we never get snow, but can you believe I only know of one person who commutes the route that I`m planning, and only one person who sometimes commutes in my work site, out of about 75 people. We are lazy. I guess is the warm weather, sometimes gets way too hot and humid. We have a few who ride MTB`s regularly though.

TAHOEGRAMPS, Thanks for the good advice. You are right, and I`m commited to ride as many days as I can, so energy savings are a must, specially at my age (43 ). I will buy the most efficient bike a can afford to buy and to mount. Road Bike is what I want. Question; what kind of tire should I ride. I must be able to repair at least once if one goes flat, I`m going to work ! I remember my older brother glueing tubeless tires on his road bikes, it was not easy or quick. What do you suggest. Also, since I will be riding long hills half the time, I need good/lasting brakes to be able to get good use of fast down hill riding. What do you say.
Glad you are in DR, nice place, once I get fit and ready, I`m planning a ride to DR ( on the Ferry first of course ) to ride around Santo Domingo and have a few Presidentes with the good friendly people of D.R.

CYCLAHOLIC, Thanks for the welcome from Sydney. Hey, we just hired a good guy from Uruguay, very friendly fellow, his name Gustavo Lago.

JT
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Old 09-05-05, 08:29 AM   #6
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Welcome. JT!

The Shimano pads only seem to last about 300 miles on my bike (I have to brake at the bottom of one steep hill). The Kool-Stop (salmon colored) pads seem towork better.
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Old 09-05-05, 08:45 AM   #7
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VRKELLEY, Thanks man, that`s the kind of data I`m looking for. I will be riding a few, ( of my mind ) about five hills that will require braking, one of them about a mile long. Brakes are very important to me, because I`ll like to speed downhill. About disc brakes, anybody ?
JT
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Old 09-05-05, 09:51 AM   #8
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Tyre availability is a significant factor. You need mid-sized, fairly slick tyres with a kevlar anti-puncture band for extra reliability.
In 700c size, you need 25-32mm width depending on how rough the roads are. In 26" the equivelent width would be 1.25" to 1.75". Check what local bike shops offer or be prepared to stock up via mail order..
A road bike with generous tyre clearance would be ideal. For a commuter, you also may need to fit fenders and a rear luggage rack for light loads. Both of these are best attatched directly to the frame so make sure it has suitable threaded eyelets. To help you over the hills, you need gears much lower than a racing athlete. Look for a triple chainring at the front.
What brands are available locally?
Regarding p*nctures, most commuters carry a spare inner tube as well as a patch kit. This will minimize the need for roadside repairs.
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Old 09-05-05, 10:05 AM   #9
Johnny Torres
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Thanks MICHAELW, I`m writing down all the advice from all of you. This Forum is great because of all the great people like you guys and gals.
JT
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Old 09-05-05, 10:23 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Torres
VRKELLEY, Thanks man, that`s the kind of data I`m looking for. I will be riding a few, ( of my mind ) about five hills that will require braking, one of them about a mile long. Brakes are very important to me, because I`ll like to speed downhill. About disc brakes, anybody ?
JT
Good braking techniques will also spare your brakes. As you're appoaching the stop, down-shift AND sit more upright or even stand in the pedals. Rather than applying steady pressure to both brakes, Alternate braking front to back.

That is apply the front brake, let off as you're applying the back brake and sitting in a LESS aero position. Keep alternating until you're at a stop. It takes a little practice to learn to start braking at each hill but being a commuter and doing the same route most days, you'll rock I'm sure.

Once stopped, the lowered gear will enable you to get back "on plane" more quickly.
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Old 09-06-05, 06:46 AM   #11
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Bienvenido, Johnny Towers.
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Old 09-09-05, 08:28 PM   #12
tahoegramps
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Torres
Thanks for the friendly welcome !!!

TURBONIUM, Youre right, we never get snow, but can you believe I only know of one person who commutes the route that I`m planning, and only one person who sometimes commutes in my work site, out of about 75 people. We are lazy. I guess is the warm weather, sometimes gets way too hot and humid. We have a few who ride MTB`s regularly though.

TAHOEGRAMPS, Thanks for the good advice. You are right, and I`m commited to ride as many days as I can, so energy savings are a must, specially at my age (43 ). I will buy the most efficient bike a can afford to buy and to mount. Road Bike is what I want. Question; what kind of tire should I ride. I must be able to repair at least once if one goes flat, I`m going to work ! I remember my older brother glueing tubeless tires on his road bikes, it was not easy or quick. What do you suggest. Also, since I will be riding long hills half the time, I need good/lasting brakes to be able to get good use of fast down hill riding. What do you say.
Glad you are in DR, nice place, once I get fit and ready, I`m planning a ride to DR ( on the Ferry first of course ) to ride around Santo Domingo and have a few Presidentes with the good friendly people of D.R.

CYCLAHOLIC, Thanks for the welcome from Sydney. Hey, we just hired a good guy from Uruguay, very friendly fellow, his name Gustavo Lago.

JT
Hey, something that you can consider is some kind of tire with kevlar, these tires are a little heavier but there is a much smaller chance you will get a flat. Several companies make them. Carrying a couple of tubes with you is a must and tire levers.

When you come to the DR let me know. Presidente is the BEST beer!
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