I've decided to commute on a bicycle to work to save some $, get into better shape, and help the environment. I read on this board and others for a couple of weeks absorbing as much info as possible to make an educated purchasing decision.
I had a difficult time deciding between a road bike and a hybrid bike (Cyclocross would of been best, but not in my price range) but opted for a road bike because of the less weight and efficiency of smaller tires. Other commuters on my path seem to go for road bikes as well even with some sidewalk riding.
I fully realize I'm not racing nor aiming to set a land speed record and with my 9.2 mile round trip commute with 34 traffic light (argh!) I did not believe a $1000+ bicycle would make much of a difference in the amount of time it took me to get to work. I did opt for the Dawes from bikesdirect.com as it gave my own personal balance of quality Shimano components for the right price. I'm a bang for buck kinda guy. I don't want to invest too much $ from the get-go only to revert to being a bag of sh_t taking the car into work after a month or two. I didn't see a whole lot of value add from an LBS for my particular situation so I opted for the cheaper internet route. I was a little bit worried about sizing, so we'll see how that works out.
Ebay ad for the Dawes Lightening 1000 from Chicabike:
Received UPS tracking info next business days and a couple of days later the bike arrived from Texas:
I was a little worried about the bike because of the beat up packaging, but after inspecting inside all looks well. We'll see tonight when I get it assembled. The entire package came in at 32 lbs:
As a motorcyclist who has worked on his own bikes over the years, I'm confident I can put this baby together myself with little trouble. The tons of videos on youtube should help as well. I picked up a helmet already. Now I need a lock. I'll start researching that on this board now. At the suggestion of a poster on this board I picked up the BELL Muti-tool at Walmart for $13 and change:
I have covered parking garage and bike rack at work as well as a shower. I plan to drive to work on Mondays and drop off clothes, and bike the rest of the week. I still need to research fenders, LED lights, and I will be using a backpack first and see how that goes w/ the laptop as it's free. I have rain gear and need to pick up a spare tube and pump. (still researching ) If that bothers me I'll look into Racks and panniers. If I really get into this I will consider riding to the grocery store for food as well. We'll see. I'll post up how the assembly goes tonight!