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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 08-26-08, 08:06 AM   #1
sourdoughT
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Best brands of bikes for commuting?

What are the best and durable brands of bikes for commuting? I'm looking for either a Cyclocross or MTB used bike.
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Old 08-26-08, 08:20 AM   #2
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Brand doesn't matter as much as fit and function. However, old Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, Univega etc type bikes are good to stick with. Generally Huffys and NEXT are good to stay away from.
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Old 08-26-08, 08:31 AM   #3
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If you are looking at cyclocross, Redline built their brand on this category. I'd also look at Surly for solid, no frills bikes. I agree though with the earlier poster, that as long as you stay with a quality bike brand (Trek, Specialized, Giant, Bianchi, Cannondale, etc) you should be looking at a decent bike.

I think cyclocross bikes make good commuters, but I'd stay away from most mountain bikes, especially full suspension versions. I don't think they make good bikes for transportation in comparison to your other options. I've mused more on this at http://austinbikeblog.org/?p=38
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Old 08-26-08, 08:32 AM   #4
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Steel frames rule for longer commutes, consider;

Surley, Soma, Jamis, Kona.

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Old 08-26-08, 08:34 AM   #5
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The label don't mean much.
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Old 08-26-08, 09:02 AM   #6
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Depends on the type of commute you have, and the distance. 10 miles one way on street, and the road bikes, touring bikes, and cyclocross bikes begin to have a real advantage. Throw in some crushed gravel paths, the cyclocross and touring bikes have an advantage due to wider tires. Toruing and cyclocross bikes can accept fenders and wider tires.

If your commute is less than 5 miles one way, you won't be on it long enough for it to matter. If you want to jump curbs, ride down steps, and other un-roadly type things, Mountain bikes have the advantage.
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Old 08-26-08, 09:09 AM   #7
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Rivendell!
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Old 08-26-08, 09:19 AM   #8
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I forgot to add I've been doing 20 miles round trip and want the capacity to do up to 50 miles round trip a day consistently in case my job changes.
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Old 08-26-08, 09:29 AM   #9
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I still say Rivendell.

Seriously though, any touring style bike would be perfect.
Drop or Moustache bars, steel frame, room for 32mm tires/fenders, braze-ons for rack/fenders.
That's the kind of stuff you want to look for. Don't worry so much about brand.
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Old 08-26-08, 09:53 AM   #10
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Don't worry so much about brand.
Agreed. Just avoid the ones held together with twine
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Old 08-26-08, 09:59 AM   #11
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The label don't mean much.
+1. Corolla is good, Tercel sucks. You're going to find different rigs that fit/function differently under the same label. Utility, find the one that performs the way you want.
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Old 08-26-08, 10:07 AM   #12
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surly.
ant, if ya have the dough.
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Old 08-26-08, 10:09 AM   #13
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Drop or Moustache bars, steel frame, room for 32mm tires/fenders, braze-ons for rack/fenders.
+1. I might want my maximum tire size to be even a little larger, but still able to fit some full size and wide fenders.
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Old 08-26-08, 11:00 AM   #14
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Surly, Salsa, Soma, or ANT (like someone said if you have the dough). All make nice commuter bikes or frames.
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Old 08-26-08, 11:00 AM   #15
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Come to the dark side. Get a recumbent.
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Old 08-26-08, 01:17 PM   #16
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Surly - generally

edit: cross-check specifically

Last edited by modernjess; 08-27-08 at 10:51 AM.
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Old 08-26-08, 05:31 PM   #17
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Surly Cross Check - has eyelets for racks and fenders, and still enough clearance for big meaty 700c tires.

and in my opinion a big plus is that it is steel
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Old 08-26-08, 06:41 PM   #18
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Find a successful local bike shop with a good inventory and excellent service. Find out if they are helpful or bike snobs.

If they fit the bill, purchase from them.

Having a local support system (LBS) is amazing. I don't think you can get better than mine (Peachtree City Bike Center). These guys are all serious riders, and yet they take the local commuter seriously, even though my needs are so much different than theirs.

I can ride my bike up anytime, and they throw it on the rack, adjust it, lube it, check it, and I'm on my way. No charge, no questions asked. Done.

I'll stick with them. They happen to be a Trek and Redline dealer. I'll stick with them.
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Old 08-26-08, 08:23 PM   #19
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A.n.t.

Last edited by Allen; 08-26-08 at 08:29 PM.
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Old 08-26-08, 08:30 PM   #20
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surly crosscheck would be perfect in my opionion
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Old 08-28-08, 05:36 PM   #21
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I'll look at the Surly Crosscheck next week then.
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Old 08-28-08, 05:46 PM   #22
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If I could do it all over again, i'd have a Surly Crosscheck or Surly Long Haul Trucker.

In fact, i'll be the next bike that I buy with the intent to keep.
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Old 08-28-08, 06:06 PM   #23
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I bought a Bianchi Volpe for $850 in April 2006. I think that price will beat a Surly Cross Check & LHT.
I now have 3990 miles.

I have had the rear wheal trued once, broke 1 rear spoke. And my seat post broke recently. Has the Surly brand done better in upkeep costs then my Volpe?

cassette 32,28,24,21,18,16,14,12,11 Chain Rings 48, 38, 28
It came with 32 x 700 knobby tires. I run 700 x 28's slicks. The rims will handle 23's
braze ons for racks and fenders. I use a rear rack but get haven't bought fenders.

I am not experienced with other bikes but would be interesting to hear some maintenance costs from Surly owners.
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Old 08-28-08, 07:44 PM   #24
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So many variables come into play it's not a case of this brand or that bike. You may be 300LBS, you may like to ride slow, fast. The perfect commuter bike is perfect for you, your style of riding, etc. I will say this - I went with a Kona Jake The Snake as I wanted a tough road bike and that's exactly what a Cyclocross bike is. A tough road bike. After riding for over a yr I'll say this - avoid canti brakes on road style bikes. Horrible and dangerous. I'm going to get plenty of stick for saying that i just know it. Don't let anybody tell you to get big fat tyres either. Again try different sizes out until your happy. I went from 28 to 35 to 23 to 25. 25's are perfect for ME. I'm not going to say they are perfect for you. Others on BF will try and convince you this way or that - try for yourself.
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Old 08-28-08, 07:53 PM   #25
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Made in Chyna seems to be a common brand you see in stores.

However, take a few bikes for a ride and get a proper fit at a LBS and enjoy the ride!

I love my Jamis Commuter. It fits my needs and IMO was reasonably priced...
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