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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 08-04-08, 07:38 AM   #1
Katosu - Sotaka
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How far makes it worth it?

I'm looking around at some of the possible routes I can take up to my school. Since my bike recently broke , I want to cut back on the costs that I incur driving to school by riding instead (using the old bike one of my parents used to use. Slightly humiliating since it's supposed to be a female bike, but viable.)

The way I usually drive, it's 15 miles up (Rounded.) However, if I were to ride instead, I could shave a mile off taking an alternative route and cut it down to about 13.7 miles.

This is where it gets tricky. About mid-way (6.5 miles miles), there's a bus stop for the CCT system in Powder Springs. A fare one-way costs about $1.50, and I would have to take it both ways (seeing as I don't have the luxury of carpooling.)

So, my question is - is 14 miles for 3$ on the bus worth it? I understand that one might say it's for 28 miles, seeing as I ride part of the way, but I'm curious if I should just keep riding on the crappy bike, or just take the break and ride the bus. This also allots time for studying in the morning, if I want - or just to play a PSP in laziness.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:56 AM   #2
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I'd say the only person that can answer your question is you. Is it worth it to YOU? Do you enjoy riding your mom's bike? Can you afford the $3/day for the bus? etc.
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Old 08-04-08, 07:59 AM   #3
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Ride the bus.

Get a beater mountain bike, second hand.

Pedal furiously; you are young.

Sell the car already.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:01 AM   #4
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To add to what tyrell said, is there any chance you can save (or currently have the money) for a new or newer-used bike that likely fits you better and will encourage you to ride more? Having a bike that I bought with my own money made it even more desirable to bike into work.

Personally, the $3 would only be worth it to me on poor weather days. But that's me.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:06 AM   #5
Katosu - Sotaka
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Bah. The bike that broke was my new one - but it recieved some heavy damage after an accident I occurred when a car cut me off. It broke multiple spokes to the point where I have to save up and replace the wheel, and possibly have to pay one of the bike shops around here for the service. >=/

But, don't get me wrong. I love to ride. Even this bike - which takes a bit more effort than my old bike to go up hills - is a lot of fun to ride. It also helps that I'm strong, but that partially comes with being a "big guy."

So you think the Hybrid commute is a good way to cut down costs?

And my main concern for keeping the car is for work. I'm trying to land a job at Walmart (ugh), and I doubt they want a sweaty employee. <_<;
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Old 08-04-08, 08:09 AM   #6
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Wait, so you are locking your bicycle up at the bus stop halfway or putting it on the front and taking it with you? I am confused. I would probably just take the bus there for 1.50, and then cycle the whole way home.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:11 AM   #7
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And my main concern for keeping the car is for work. I'm trying to land a job at Walmart (ugh), and I doubt they want a sweaty employee. <_<;
They want any human or otherwise with some kind of pulse.

Sell the car ... I work for a high end car dealership and I show up in my bicycle every day.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:15 AM   #8
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Wait, so you are locking your bicycle up at the bus stop halfway or putting it on the front and taking it with you? I am confused. I would probably just take the bus there for 1.50, and then cycle the whole way home.
My apologies for being so vague.

The CCT system in Georgia has outfitted all the buses with a bike rack directly on the front of the bus, so I'm able to take the bike to the campus with me.

At the campus, there's a small bike rack outside the main building that I can tie my bike to using a bike chain for the duration of classes.



And on the car thing, I just don't know if I'd be able to go to work smelling like sweat.
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Old 08-04-08, 08:23 AM   #9
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Lots of people ride to office jobs, including some big wigs, every day, in this country and many others. Some have to wear a suit and tie. They show up early in order to cool down and deal with smells in creative, cheap ways. Can't do that if you want to be lazy in the morning
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Old 08-04-08, 08:29 AM   #10
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Fix your good bike and ride that. A truing stand, spoke wrench and spokes will cost you $50-60. Heck you could probably get by without a truing stand and save $40. Sit down and spend a couple hours learning how to true a wheel. That is IF your broken wheel is repairable. If it isn't, you can find fairly cheap wheels. I outfitted my bike with a wheelset that cost around $100. I've seen sets for around $80. If all you need is one tire, you can get it even cheaper than that (there's also craigslist).

So if you fixed your bike and skipped the bus for a month, it would probably be a wash in terms of cash. Anything after that, throw the $3 you save every day not taking the bus into a high-interest savings account and watch it grow. $60 a month can grow pretty quickly.

Take a change of clothes to work and a towel. Many many people face the same challenges you face and still manage to bike every day. Save the bus for those really rare occasions where you can't ride.
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Old 08-04-08, 09:26 AM   #11
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Depends on how much you enjoy that 14 miles that you'll be cutting out. If it's filled with traffic it might be worth the $3. If it's a decent ride, then just go all way. If the bus route has a lot of stops, then there's a good chance you can bike faster than the bus.

I would carry some change for those days that you're not really in the mood.

If you decide to ride the bus regularly, look into monthly or student discounts.
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Old 08-04-08, 09:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by stevo9er View Post
Wait, so you are locking your bicycle up at the bus stop halfway or putting it on the front and taking it with you? I am confused. I would probably just take the bus there for 1.50, and then cycle the whole way home.
This is how I handle it, although with a much shorter commute (about 6 miles one way). In the morning I put my bike on the bus. I get to work more quickly, and I'm not sweaty. In the afternoon I bike all the way home.
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Old 08-05-08, 10:22 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Katosu - Sotaka View Post
So, my question is - is 14 miles for 3$ on the bus worth it?
I pay $168 for a monthly transit pass. It gets me on all regonal transit; heavy commuter rail, light rail trolley, and busses. The alternative for me is to drive 45miles each way at (32 mi/gal)/(4 $/gal). I did the math and it saves me a hundred bucks a month.

I suggest you do a similar analysis, but in your case you will need to look at how much time it will save you. Then you will have to determine what your time is worth. If you are a serious student, extra time to study can be golden.

Last edited by CommuteCommando; 08-05-08 at 10:26 AM.
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Old 08-05-08, 11:12 AM   #14
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I would say any combination of the three choices. Make the judgement each day as needed. How's the weather? Are you really tired? Kind of tired? Do you need to dress up that day? Do you have to get somewhere after work? etc.......
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Old 08-05-08, 02:22 PM   #15
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Sell the car ... I work for a high end car dealership and I show up in my bicycle every day.
Well that's the tastiest irony I've seen all day. What kind of comments does that draw?
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