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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 08-03-08, 09:04 PM   #1
Bobd20011
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Does anyone commute on a Sojourn?

I am thinking about buying a Raleigh Sojourn to commute to work with. I will be commuting 26 miles round trip. I understand that it is not the sturdiest touring bike, but I think that it looks like it would be a great commuting bike because it looks like the total package for a good price. Any thoughts?
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Old 08-03-08, 09:57 PM   #2
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I have a friend who commutes on one of those and he really likes it. What drew him to it were the disc brakes. You might also check out the Lemond Poprad, i think it has a better frame and components but it's also a bit more spendy.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:00 AM   #3
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Search the forums, that bike has been discussed a good bit. I personally think it is just about perfect. I don't own one, but I'd probably buy one if I had to do it all over again. About the only criticisms I saw were the hubs are cheap and 32 spoke count is not a great choice for a loaded tourer. Also, some people have pointed out that the Sora crankset is not a top-end model, but it will probably last as long as anything else.

I commute on a touring bike and think it is the perfect style bike for commuting. The Sojourn has a lot to offer other other touring bikes. You get fenders and a rear rack included, disc brakes, a Brooks saddle standard.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:42 AM   #4
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Search the forums, that bike has been discussed a good bit. I personally think it is just about perfect. I don't own one, but I'd probably buy one if I had to do it all over again. About the only criticisms I saw were the hubs are cheap and 32 spoke count is not a great choice for a loaded tourer. Also, some people have pointed out that the Sora crankset is not a top-end model, but it will probably last as long as anything else.

I commute on a touring bike and think it is the perfect style bike for commuting. The Sojourn has a lot to offer other other touring bikes. You get fenders and a rear rack included, disc brakes, a Brooks saddle standard.
I agree with the spoke count. I'd pop for a 36-spoke wheelset and keep the stock wheels as backups. Better yet, invest in a dynohub front wheel and add lights to the bike. FWIW, the Sojourn is on my short list of possible replacements for my hybrid as a commuter once I have the money.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:52 AM   #5
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Bobd
Another disc road bike thread
Really wanted one for commuting but they were/are unavailable. Another spendy bike is the Trek Portland - it has better components and a carbon fork but cheaper bar wraps and saddle and crappy fenders(IMHO)

The Poprad has 46/38 crank? Cross that off my list of disc equipped road bikes. If the Sojourn doesn't come in soon, may just go with a Portland or Sutra.
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Old 08-04-08, 10:58 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replys. I know that this has been discussed at lenght in the touring forums, but I am interested to know what commuters thought of the bike. I don't ever think that I will go over 50 miles on the bike in a day and I probably won't ever put more than 30 lbs. on the thing. Thus, the spoke count does not seems to be a problem. I am more interseted to know if there are people on the forum that are presently riding them and what their thoughts are. I am also wondering if I should be looking for something with a carbon fork.
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Old 08-04-08, 11:15 AM   #7
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Thanks for the replys. I know that this has been discussed at lenght in the touring forums, but I am interested to know what commuters thought of the bike. I don't ever think that I will go over 50 miles on the bike in a day and I probably won't ever put more than 30 lbs. on the thing. Thus, the spoke count does not seems to be a problem. I am more interseted to know if there are people on the forum that are presently riding them and what their thoughts are. I am also wondering if I should be looking for something with a carbon fork.
For commuting, I don't see any advantage of a carbon fork. Carbon is most to save a few grams of weight. Steel rides nicely and is sturdy and long lasting. I definitely don't count grams. My U lock weighs more than the weight I could ever hope to save with carbon fiber.
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Old 08-04-08, 12:38 PM   #8
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For commuting, I don't see any advantage of a carbon fork. Carbon is most to save a few grams of weight. Steel rides nicely and is sturdy and long lasting. I definitely don't count grams. My U lock weighs more than the weight I could ever hope to save with carbon fiber.
Thanks! That is good to know. The guy at the LBS was trying to tell me that I should buy a carbon fork for commuting, even though they cost a lot more, because they provide coushin when you don't have a front suspension. This put me off because I was thinking about buying a Sojourn. The Sojourn looks fantastic, and it comes with what looks like a decent set of components. I think it would look increadible with some of those old fashioned panniers from wallbike.com.
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Old 08-04-08, 12:45 PM   #9
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Thanks! That is good to know. The guy at the LBS was trying to tell me that I should buy a carbon fork for commuting, even though they cost a lot more, because they provide coushin when you don't have a front suspension. This put me off because I was thinking about buying a Sojourn. The Sojourn looks fantastic, and it comes with what looks like a decent set of components. I think it would look increadible with some of those old fashioned panniers from wallbike.com.
There are ways to add some shock absorption that doesn't cost an arm and a leg. A good pair of gloves is a start, as is shock absorption gel under the handlebar tape. But your best shock absorbers are your arms and legs; keep 'em bent and just soak it up.
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Old 08-04-08, 01:13 PM   #10
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Thanks! That is good to know. The guy at the LBS was trying to tell me that I should buy a carbon fork for commuting, even though they cost a lot more, because they provide coushin when you don't have a front suspension. This put me off because I was thinking about buying a Sojourn. The Sojourn looks fantastic, and it comes with what looks like a decent set of components. I think it would look increadible with some of those old fashioned panniers from wallbike.com.
If you visit crazyguyonabike.com and look through the journals, you won't see many people biking long distance using carbon fiber or with front suspension. I think it is a combination of cost and durability. Also, suspension forks supposedly suck energy on long rides. People commute on all kinds of bikes, but touring bikes have some real advantages for commuting:

1. Wide gearing range.

2. Places to attach racks and fenders.

3. Ability to accept tires of a wide range of widths.

4. Heavier construction to resist frame damage and rust.

Bar end shifters are not as easy to use as STI levers, but there is very little that can go wrong with them. The Sojourn and some other touring bikes use bar ends. I switched to bar ends and now use friction shifting on both front and rear. I no longer have to worry about derailleur adjustment. Keeping indexed shifting working properly requires more careful adjustment, and STI levers are easier to break and more expensive to replace.

It is all a matter of preference though. A good part of my daily commute is on a bike path that lots of commuters take. People commute on all kinds of bikes. I've seen hybrids, comfort bikes, mountain bikes, even a few others on touring bikes. There is one guy I see almost daily on a racing bike who flies past me. Its a nice bike, but I wouldn't want it because there is no room for fenders and the tires are too skinny.
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Old 08-04-08, 01:40 PM   #11
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I decided against the Sojourn because it seems really pricey for what you get. Dont worry too much about the inclusion of a saddle/fenders/rack. Any touring bike will readily accept theses things and you can get a good deal on them if you buy them at the same time as your bike. The brooks "pre-aged" saddle is stupid imho. For half the price you can have the good ole b17. pre-aged leather is the equivalent of paying $100 for a pair of jeans that are brand new with holes in them, you gotta do the work yourself The fenders on the Sojourn hit my toe all the time and the handlebars look sweet but are not that comfy on long rides. I would check out a Surly Long Haul Trucker, Novara Rondonee, or Jamis Aurora.
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Old 08-04-08, 02:12 PM   #12
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I decided against the Sojourn because it seems really pricey for what you get. Dont worry too much about the inclusion of a saddle/fenders/rack. Any touring bike will readily accept theses things and you can get a good deal on them if you buy them at the same time as your bike. The brooks "pre-aged" saddle is stupid imho. For half the price you can have the good ole b17. pre-aged leather is the equivalent of paying $100 for a pair of jeans that are brand new with holes in them, you gotta do the work yourself The fenders on the Sojourn hit my toe all the time and the handlebars look sweet but are not that comfy on long rides. I would check out a Surly Long Haul Trucker, Novara Rondonee, or Jamis Aurora.
None of which have disc brakes. My guess is that most people who don't have a preference, aren't going to buy a disc brake bike. Someone would be looking at the Sojourn because they do have a preference, at least small one.

Either I'm missing your logic, or you just don't like the bike in general. Ok, so the brooks, according to you, is $50 overpriced, and the rack does have value even if how much that is is up for debate. Fenders hit your shoes... sucks to be short I guess. Anyway, you seem to rip this bike as overpriced, then recommend the LHT which has a) no brooks b) no fenders c) no rack and d) costs about $50 less.

I'm not denying your right to dislike the bike, I just not following the reasons you're giving.
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Old 08-04-08, 03:05 PM   #13
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Thanks for the replys. I know that this has been discussed at lenght in the touring forums, but I am interested to know what commuters thought of the bike. I don't ever think that I will go over 50 miles on the bike in a day and I probably won't ever put more than 30 lbs. on the thing. Thus, the spoke count does not seems to be a problem. I am more interseted to know if there are people on the forum that are presently riding them and what their thoughts are. I am also wondering if I should be looking for something with a carbon fork.
Get the carbon fork if you get an aluminum frame. With steel, not necessary.
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Old 08-04-08, 03:40 PM   #14
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There are ways to add some shock absorption that doesn't cost an arm and a leg. A good pair of gloves is a start, as is shock absorption gel under the handlebar tape. But your best shock absorbers are your arms and legs; keep 'em bent and just soak it up.
A Brooks Flyer helps also!
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Old 08-04-08, 03:43 PM   #15
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Sirrus Rider: Yeah, but I've got to a) sell my motorcycle or b) save up a whole lot of pennies before I can afford one. I seriously want a Brooks saddle.
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Old 08-04-08, 03:57 PM   #16
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I've used a Sojourn for my commute for about 3 months now. Ordered it in March and it didn't come in until May but it was worth the wait. I upgraded to STI from the bar end shifters and went with drop bars instead of the flared out handlebars. So far I mostly love it. My one complaint is the lack of toe clearance from the front fender. On some tight turns my feet hit the mud flap on the fender. Eventually I will upgrade the fenders to alleviate this.
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