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.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-06-06, 05:40 PM   #1
Cayman
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 29
I'm not sure what I can say that others have not already posted, but I wanted to ask the question in my own way. I would like to have a bike that can go just as fast and has the performance of a road bike, but durability. Also, I would like to have something that was cool looking as well. I'll be using this bike for commuting, and fitness riding (one of the reasons I want a "road" bike). The commuting I'll be doing will just be with a back pack etc, nothing too involved. At the same time I'm a little afraid that a road bike isn't as manuverable as a different style, maybe because I haven't ridden them much in the past. Does anyone have success in negotiating obstacles, like the streets of NY, with a road bike. I have my eye on the Specialized Allez Elite Double, but didn't know if I need something like the Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra.

I know those are totally different bikes, but you see my dilemma. Also, I know the drop handle bars offer a lot of benefits for changing hand positions, and a more aerodynamic positioning. As well as feeling "on top" of the bike. Like I said, I want fitness and speed, but manuverability and a good look. Any suggestions? Oh yeah, I'm a newbie if you couldn't tell .
Cayman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 05:48 PM   #2
Jarery
Senior Member
 
Jarery's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Coquitlam
Bikes:
Posts: 2,538
Sport tour bike
cyclocross bike
Jarery is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 05:55 PM   #3
Az B
Fattest Thin Man
 
Az B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Directly above the center of the earth
Bikes: Miyata 610, Vinco V, Rocky Mountain Element
Posts: 2,649
Years ago, they used to make these bikes that were "sport tourers". They were light, fast, and still had braze ons for racks and fenders and stuff. They were perfect all-around bikes. But these days everyone wants to be Lance, so all the bikes are no compromise race bikes.

Back when I raced, I actually used a sport tourer (stripped of course) for the longer races as it was far more comfortable and handled better. I figured that to come in first, I first had to finish, so a reliable, predictable, comfortable bike would be best for the long road races.

Az
Az B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 06:02 PM   #4
tg1896
Flaming Anarchist
 
tg1896's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Chapel Hill, NC
Bikes: 2008 Bachetta Giro 26 1985 Trek 550 1994 Bianchi Alfana 2006 Cannondale T2000
Posts: 61
I started out commuting on a road bike, but eventually tired of the whole backpack/messenger bag hassle. I thought about the Bad Boy, sport tourers, etc. I wound up springing for a Cannondale tourer and could not be happier. It may be a little pricey, but you should definitely consider a touring bike. Bigger tires (jumping on to the grass is no problemo), drop handlebars and I can carry a laptop, lunch, clothes, whatever.
tg1896 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 06:17 PM   #5
jschen
riding once again
 
jschen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Diego, CA
Bikes: '06 Cervelo R3, '05 Specialized Allez
Posts: 7,359
If you want a road bike and don't have to carry much, go for it! I commute on an Allez and carry a large CamelBak as my backpack. But then, all I carry are my lock cable (U-lock portion mounted on frame), lights, and some clothes. You probably can manage mounting some racks if necessary, but if you're going to do that, might as well get a more suitable bike for the task.

I drive when I need to take my computer back and forth (Monday and Saturday). But then, it's a 20-odd pound iMac G5, not a laptop, so even wiith a touring bike, I'm not really sure how I'd carry it safely.
__________________
If you notice this notice then you will notice that this notice is not worth noticing.
jschen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 06:28 PM   #6
late
Senior Member
 
late's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Southern Maine
Bikes:
Posts: 8,377
Under $1K
Specialized Seqouia
Between $1k and 2K
Burley Vagabond
Gunnar Sport (my bike)

There are other choices, on any of them I'd upgrade the wheels
if durability and speed are issues. Get the Mavic CXP33 rim and a Shimano hub. 9 speed is more durable than 10. The Tubus Fly rack weighs 12 ounces.

Let's use tires as an example. Tires can be grouped as under 300 gr and over 300 gr or over 400 gr. My Ruffy Tuffy tirea are 340gr.
They aren't slow, but they certainly aren't fast. They are pretty durable. But I describe pretty durable as roughly one flat a year.
You can get tires that are more durable, but they are gonna be slower usually.Btw, many tire makers fib about their weight.
But you have these tradeoffs to make, and while you can finesse your way around some of the problems, you won't get to change the laws of physics.
late is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 07:21 PM   #7
Jeprox
MTWThFMuter
 
Jeprox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: SFOBayArea, CA
Bikes: schwinn, raleigh, 'dale, litespeed, bianchi, surly, novara
Posts: 454
Litespeed Blue Ridge

Jeprox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 08:06 PM   #8
Jarery
Senior Member
 
Jarery's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Coquitlam
Bikes:
Posts: 2,538
I was a hair away from buying a custom made sport tourer when a kona cross bike fell in my lap at half price instead.

The sport tourer will be my next bike

http://www.marinoni.qc.ca/html/2005/05_en_ciclo.asp

Its steel frame, carbon fork, eyelets, takes a 28mm wide wheel with full fenders, disc brake drop outs can be installed if requested, and I was going to have done with 10 speed compact veloce groupset. Whole deal with ambrosia focus wheels would of been about 2k canadian.

Machka who is a bf poster uses the same bike I beleive.
Its about as fast as you can get and still have full fenders, 28 wheels and a rack

Jarery is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 08:26 PM   #9
joejack951
Senior Member
 
joejack951's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Wilmington, DE
Bikes: 1984 Trek 660, 2003 Specialized Hardrock, 2004 LOOK KG386i, 2005 Iron Horse Warrior Expert, 2009 Pedal Force CX1, 2014 Islabikes CNOC 14 (son's)
Posts: 9,794
I'll second the Sequoia as a nice compromise between a "race" bike and a tourer. You can fit 28mm tires (without fenders) or use 23mm tires with fenders (Race Blades). It has the appropriate braze-ons for a rack (at least on the base model, avoid the carbon stay bikes if you want to add a rack) and the geometry is relaxed enough (and adjustable on some models) that anyone could get comfortable on one.
joejack951 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 08:38 PM   #10
mtn_mojo
Commuter/Roadie
 
mtn_mojo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Laporte, CO
Bikes: De Rosa Giro d'Italia, Scott Tampico
Posts: 127
That Marinoni is awesome! It's not going to be for quite some time, but I think that may end up being my next bike purchase. Yum.
mtn_mojo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 08:42 PM   #11
Cyclaholic
CRIKEY!!!!!!!
 
Cyclaholic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Sydney, Australia
Bikes: several
Posts: 4,270
If you want speed then whatever bike you get also get some aerobars - speed is all about your legs, lungs, and aerodynamics. I ride a Surly LHT on 32 spoke wheels with Schwalbe Marathon 36's + MrTuffies (heavy!), full fenders, rack & trunkbag, 60oz SLA battery for my homebrew light, and 100oz camelback, but I get down on those aerobars and go into cruise missile mode and average just under 20mph on my 30 mile commute (average 1hr 35min. door to door). If that's the sort of speed you want then don't get too hung up on weight, think aerodynamics, legs, lungs...
__________________
There are 10 types of people in the world - the ones that can count in base 2, the ones that can't count in base 2, and the ones that didn't expect this to be in base 3.
Cyclaholic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 10:38 PM   #12
Cayman
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 29
How much does the wheelset have to do with control, and handling?
Cayman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-06, 11:55 PM   #13
Bekologist
totally louche
 
Bekologist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: A land that time forgot
Bikes: the ever shifting stable loaded with comfortable road bikes and city and winter bikes
Posts: 18,025
Its not the machine, its the engine, that makes a bike 'sporty'.

If you're concerned about looks, what you want to look like?

Urban warrior, or racer wannabe?

I believe durability in bikes means some weight. I also believe extra weight is not a handicap unless you are being timed for some reason. Using FAT tires lets you roll over things other bikers have to walk their rides over.

For tires, I'm sure the other posters mean well suggesting skinny tires, but thinking 23-28c tires for a 'durable' ride is delusional,you should get a bike that can take 32c with fenders, or better yet, 37c and above. Plush and cush, and a lot of road hazard can just be ridden right over. I hear some of those NY potholes are total bike eaters, though....

If you want durability and versatility off the rack, a Bianchi Volpe, Trek 520, Jamis Aurora? Fuji or cannondale tourer, or bikes of a similar ilk are what you want to look at.

Fast as you want to make them. And about as durable as they make.

Last edited by Bekologist; 02-07-06 at 12:01 AM.
Bekologist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 01:10 AM   #14
Cayman
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Great info, sounds like really good advice. I just saw a new '06 bike for Specialized called the "Tricross", has anyone else looked at it? Here's a link, any opinions? http://www.specialized.com/bc/SBCBkModel.jsp?spid=12393
Cayman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 04:42 AM   #15
Ed Holland
8speed DinoSORAs
 
Ed Holland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Oxford, UK or Mountain View, Ca
Bikes:
Posts: 2,749
I commute by road bike everyday, 10 mile journey in each direction + backpack for the sundries that I need to carry. The main recommendation I would make is to ensure sure you have well built wheels. Don't go for the fancy radial spoked wheels or the low spoke count stuff. A set of 32 spoke wheels, double wall rims with good stainless spokes will get you thousands of miles without trouble.

Enjoy the ride!,

Ed
__________________
Get a bicycle. You will certainly not regret it, if you live.
Ed Holland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 04:56 AM   #16
MichaelW
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: England
Bikes:
Posts: 12,920
A sport tourer taking 28-32mm tyres (+ fenders) is a good compromise between racy agility and MTB/touring robustness. Look for a model which is dimensioned for long-drop caliper brakes.
Aerobars are not recomended for city riding, they are best for long open roads.
Check out the Soma ES
MichaelW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 05:51 AM   #17
gear
Senior Member
 
gear's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: North shore of Mass.
Bikes:
Posts: 2,131
If you just want speed, get a road bike.
If you want speed and something that will take some bumps (and fenders and rack) get a sport tourer.
If you want speed, something that will take punishment (fenders and a rack), disc brakes and any type of tire (including studded) get a cyclocross.
gear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 07:02 AM   #18
cgchambers
Senior Member
 
cgchambers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Arlington VA
Bikes:
Posts: 219
I commute with a cyclocross, the Trek X0-1. Love this bike, and make pretty darn good time when I need to. I commute 10+ each way everyday and love it more every day!
cgchambers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 08:36 AM   #19
mudslinger
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Alexandria, VA
Bikes: 1989 Serotta Nova Special X; 2006 Lemond Poprad Disc
Posts: 30
My commute bike is a new Lemond Poprad Disc. It has disc brakes, and front and rear fender eyelets to accept full fenders. So far, it is working out great!
mudslinger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 12:58 PM   #20
tacomee
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 1,294
Not anything agaimst the Cannondale Bad Boy, but the Cannondale Sport Road are better all arounders IMHO.

If you got $1300 or so, buy this bike.

http://www.cannondale.com/bikes/06/C...del-6RR8Y.html

This is a really good all around bike. Ride it to work all week-- club ride on the weekends. Light touring anyone? I would advise getting a set of 32 spoke training/commuting wheels for it and saving those light Shimanos for race day. Try to get another spare set of wheels, a rack, petals, fenders and rack for $1500-$1600.

That's not much money if you think about what a Honda Accord runs you. And the Cannodale Road Sport bikes are the Accords of the bike world.

I wouldn't lock this baby to a post however--- somebody might steal the parts off of it (those 105 brifters are worth 70-100 bucks hot )

I wouldn't ride it in really bad weather. Get a crappy MTB at Goodwill for that!
tacomee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-06, 02:25 PM   #21
joejack951
Senior Member
 
joejack951's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Wilmington, DE
Bikes: 1984 Trek 660, 2003 Specialized Hardrock, 2004 LOOK KG386i, 2005 Iron Horse Warrior Expert, 2009 Pedal Force CX1, 2014 Islabikes CNOC 14 (son's)
Posts: 9,794
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cayman
How much does the wheelset have to do with control, and handling?
Very little on any normal wheelset. The wheelsets that will have an effect on handling are either the really lightweight climbing wheels (~1300gm/set or less) or the deep section aero wheels. The lightweight wheels (in my experience with American Classic 350's) feel twitchy mainly on descents but also in normal speed riding. This can be a hindrance or something you just get used to. Aero wheels have problems in crosswinds because they become a wind catcher. And when the wind catches your front wheel and redirects you, it could have bad consequences. This is the reason why you will only see a full disc front wheel used indoors.

If you keep it simple, you won't have to worry about any of this. None of the above mentioned wheels have any place on a commuter.
joejack951 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-06, 12:36 PM   #22
CBBaron
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Cleveland
Bikes: Pugsley, fixie commuter, track bike
Posts: 1,602
The Specialized Sequoia lists a long reach caliper brake in its parts list. That should allow enough clearance to run 28mm tires an fenders. That looks to be the closest thing to a sport tourer any of the big manufactures are producing. The next closest thing is the cyclocross/light tourer like the Jamis Aurora, Bianchi Volope and Surly CrossCheck. These all make excellent tourers and you will barely notice the speed difference between one and bike like the Trek 1200.
Speaking of Trek the new Trek Portland may be the type of bike you are looking for.
Craig.
CBBaron 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 04:57 AM.