Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 09-06-05, 11:24 PM   #1
quatrecats
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: eastern Washington state, near the Idaho border
Bikes: Litespeed Bella, Giant european commurter bike, Mongoose Cipressa Ti road bike, looking for a women's specifice cross bike
Posts: 68
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
First commute woes....

So, I commuted to work today (not really for the first time, but for the first time on my European step-through style bike), and what a slog...the bike felt sooo heavy, I could not even enjoy the beautiful morning, and catching a glimpse of the first cloned donkey..
So I need some advice. I have this very sweet Litespeed Ti bike that I did not want to commute with (somehow this bike feels too special), but it has been pointed out to me that it is just a bike, so..what would youall do?

Ride the nice sturdy commuter--it really is a nice bike, all tricked out with racks, rain ready fatter tires--or fly to work on my roadster....light, sweet, but carrying my stuff on my bod?
quatrecats is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-05, 11:51 PM   #2
rusty_2000
NO FEAR!!!
 
rusty_2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Melbourne, Oz
Bikes: '05 Giant TCR C-Zero, Shogun Slickrock
Posts: 101
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Had a similar dilemna - do I commute on my workhorse shogun slickrock, or my "rolls royce" giant TCR-C 0???? Been sitting on my shogun, but this morning, the legs were tired, the gears on the shogun were giving me the $hit$ (the chain/ cassette) is worn, and they ain't what they used to be), so this morning I got out the giant - was awesome to enjoy the ride..... GO FOR IT, TREAT YOURSELF ONCE IN A WHILE!!!!!!!
rusty_2000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-05, 03:06 AM   #3
MichaelW
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: England
Bikes:
Posts: 12,920
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
There is a sensible middle way between ultra-light ti race bikes and overweight clunkers.

My everday bike is an old sports road bike but a very fine example made from quality butted steel. The bike can take proper bolt-on rack and fenders and has clearance for 32mm tyres. I use it in all conditions and it is tough and practical as well as efficient with a kitted out weight less than 30lbs. I tend to ride it at weekends as a fun bike as well.
MichaelW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-05, 05:00 AM   #4
Cyclaholic
CRIKEY!!!!!!!
 
Cyclaholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Sydney, Australia
Bikes: several
Posts: 4,270
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ride the heavy clunker - it's the ultimate training aid! Here's what you do.... put that beautifull Litespeed away for 3 months then grab your heavy commuter and just ride it like you stole it from the president of the local chapter of the hell's angels. You'll likely sufer like a dog at first... you'll grow another lung and an extra thigh muscle in each leg, your heart will want to pound its way thru your sternum to freedom.
As you get stronger (trust me, you'll get stronger) you adopt a 'hunter' attitude on your commute by challenging and trying to drop anyone that is willing to race, or just harass roadies by sucking their wheel then try to stay with them as they try to shake you off.... soon you'll keep up with them at least for short distances. Extend your commute a couple of times a week so that you come home via a longer way (a good hour to hour and a half at slow-moderate pace) so as to build some solid metabolic pathways to compliment your newly raised lactic threshold and cardiovascular capacity.

Then, after those 3 months jump onto your Litespeed and then hang on because you'll need a drag chute to slow you down at the end of the fastest century you've ever ridden.


...or you can pack your backpack and just commute on your Litespeed
Cyclaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-07-05, 06:04 AM   #5
oboeguy
34x25 FTW!
 
oboeguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: NYC
Bikes: Kona Jake, Scott CR1, Dahon SpeedPro
Posts: 6,013
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I like Cyclaholic's attitude. I feel so much stronger on weekend rides when I'm on the road bike without a backpack full of stuff for work, so I imagine with the gap between bikes being so huge in your case, the effect would be even greater. Ride the heavy mofo!
oboeguy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-05, 08:27 PM   #6
quatrecats
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: eastern Washington state, near the Idaho border
Bikes: Litespeed Bella, Giant european commurter bike, Mongoose Cipressa Ti road bike, looking for a women's specifice cross bike
Posts: 68
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Okay, so here is what I have decided after today--I rode my sweet queen Ti bike in to work today, and enjoyed each and every pedal stroke, even with the pack on my back! I am going to buy a cross frame and build myself a bike--I have the crank, bottom bracket, seat, pedals, nice wheels, handlebars, and just need to decide on brakes and buy a mt. bike cassette to go with the double crank set. So, don't want to spend tooo much, (although I got a 10% raise today!!!), but want a steel frame, reliable commuter for my 20 mile round trip. Any suggestions--

(decided I just COULD NOT ride that heavy heavy dog of a bike, as much as I used to like it--spoiled by speed, I guess--and the whole point is to relieve stress, not add, right????)
quatrecats is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-05, 08:39 PM   #7
CB HI
Cycle Year Round
 
CB HI's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Honolulu, HI
Bikes:
Posts: 11,654
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by quatrecats
I have this very sweet Litespeed Ti bike that I did not want to commute with (somehow this bike feels too special), but it has been pointed out to me that it is just a bike,
That is what I like telling BMW and Jag owner's; it is just a car!
CB HI is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-05, 08:42 PM   #8
jharte
Long Live Long Rides
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: KCMO
Bikes: 1988 Specialized Rockhopper Comp, converted for touring/commuting. 1984 Raleigh Team USA road bike.
Posts: 717
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Cyclaholic has a point. I commute and tour on an old Rockhopper Comp. Front rack, rear rack, dual headlights, blinkie, 3 bottle cages/bottles, handlebar bag w/map, rear panniers, battery for my lights, charger for battery, bell, compass, tools, and last but not least......a 9lb laptop! I use the laptop for work. Home sweet home!

It's a tank but I like it. I also have an old Raleigh road bike with NOTHING on it. I like it too when I'm tired of riding the tank. Life is good.
jharte is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-05, 11:13 PM   #9
tkiisel
The King of Bonk
 
tkiisel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: SLC, Ut
Bikes: Specialized S-Works Hardtail, Cannondale Criterium, Diamondback Assent DX (My Commuter)
Posts: 32
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ride the heavy bike to commute on. Think of it as weight training.
tkiisel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 09:37 AM   #10
Jarery
Senior Member
 
Jarery's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Coquitlam
Bikes:
Posts: 2,538
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Personally I'd ride the heavy one. I commute 32 miles a day (rnd trip) on my hybrid i affectionatly call the Thunderpig. Its 40 lbs.

Twice this week ive met up with other commuters riding lighter road bikes, both times they commented that i must be freaking strong because they cant pull away from me.

If you really want to get a cross frame http://www.marinoni.qc.ca/html/2005/05_en_fango.asp

Sells for $600 cdn (so about 425 american) for steel frame and carbon fork, and can be made with disc brake attachements.
Jarery is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 10:48 AM   #11
Aeroplane
jack of one or two trades
 
Aeroplane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Suburbia, CT
Bikes: Old-ass gearie hardtail MTB, fix-converted Centurion LeMans commuter, SS hardtail monster MTB
Posts: 5,637
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by quatrecats
Okay, so here is what I have decided after today--I rode my sweet queen Ti bike in to work today, and enjoyed each and every pedal stroke, even with the pack on my back! I am going to buy a cross frame and build myself a bike--I have the crank, bottom bracket, seat, pedals, nice wheels, handlebars, and just need to decide on brakes and buy a mt. bike cassette to go with the double crank set. So, don't want to spend tooo much, (although I got a 10% raise today!!!), but want a steel frame, reliable commuter for my 20 mile round trip. Any suggestions--
Surly Crosscheck. Haute.
Aeroplane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 11:04 AM   #12
zebano
broke cyclist
 
zebano's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
Bikes: Cannondale F400; 1979 Star
Posts: 134
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Eh ride whichever you wish. I ride an older al. trek 1000. I feel like I fly and I love it. I get back on the mtn bike in nasty weather and just groan. Backpacks don't bother me though. If you want to train, the klunker is a great way to do that.
zebano is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 05:20 PM   #13
mike
Senior Member
 
mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Snowy midwest
Bikes:
Posts: 5,392
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How much did your fancy-pants bicyle cost? Let's just say it cost $2,000. That isn't such a big deal. Lighter weight bicycles require more frequent maintanance and more expensive maintanance than an old "step through", but not so great. Let's say that you spend $500/year on repairs - that would even cover replacing a wheel or two.

All said with maintanance and amortization, you are looking at maximum $1,000/year to ride a nice fancy-pants bicycle.

Somebody correcct me if I am wrong, but I think the average yearly cost for automobile ownership/transport/maintanance is around $10,000/year.

Bottom line is that if you want to ride your favorite and expensive wheel around, do it. You should be able to justify the expense.
mike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 06:42 PM   #14
tribe3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Vienna, VA - USA
Bikes:
Posts: 412
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ride your best bike, go as light as possible, enjoy the nimbleness of a bicycle, wear it down with miles! The more the better. It gives it personality
tribe3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-05, 10:53 PM   #15
podman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
i don't see the point in suffering with a clunky bike.
mine are not a featherlight bikes (19 pound is the lightest) but i enjoy the ride of the lightest.
i recieved some guff from a buddy when i first started commuting in the rain on what was a brand new bike and my thoughts are the same now as they were then.. i spent some extra cash (expensive to my standards) on the bike for an enjoyable ride and am not about to garage it for only the best riding days.
the days when i could use some extra zing are the days that become tiresome, which translates almost immediately into commuting days with bad weather. a sweeter ride makes a huge difference for me.

it should be said that i don't race or anything and if i did i might hold a different opinion.
podman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-05, 10:03 AM   #16
quatrecats
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: eastern Washington state, near the Idaho border
Bikes: Litespeed Bella, Giant european commurter bike, Mongoose Cipressa Ti road bike, looking for a women's specifice cross bike
Posts: 68
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I tend to agree with the 'ride your lightest bike' group. So, I am going to get a new cheapo frame, and build a bike that will be a dependable commuter. I have great components, great wheels, etc, but want a frame that will accomodate fatter tires and fenders for the 6 months of rain and sleet we are entering into......Oh, and cantilevered brakes, too--


I looked at custom frames, as I have a short body, long legs, and need a specific fit..but don't want to spend the big bucks,

Thanks for all of your advice--I am on my way to becoming a full time bike commuter--no more envy when I see the other lucky folks out on the trail!!
quatrecats is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:58 AM.