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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 07-29-09, 09:57 AM   #1
HungryScholar
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Newbie looking at the Trek 7.3FX

So I've been doing some bike shopping the last month, going around and harassing the local bike shops with a bunch if amateurish questions.

I think I've whittled my bike preference down to a Trek 7.3FX, and the potential of a $250-$300 one in good condition, but used. But I'd like to check again with the forum sages and make sure this is the route I want to take.

The bike will be used in Seattle, mostly as a commuter bike to commute short distances between campus, grocery stores and local libraries. I also wouldn't mind taking the bike on light gravel from time to time as a fitness bike, but nothing like a bumpy dirt road. Road bikes seem like they wouldn't be able to handle the bumps and holes on Seattle's streets, have a much higher starting price, and probably make for a juicier target in a so-so neighborhood.

So I've been looking at the Trek FX series and other brands with similar bikes. Local bike shop folks have showed me the Giant OCR 3 and the Globe Vienna which feel about right, but seem a little heavier than the Trek 7.3FX (or even the 7.2).

Are there any other bikes I should consider at the last minute? Considering my needs, thus "class" of bike seems the most appropriate, but I thought I'd look into it one more time.

Cheers!
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Old 07-29-09, 11:14 AM   #2
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Nobody can tell you what route you want to take, but the 7.3 is a great bike for an urban commute, as long as the bike fits you. I have the 7.5 and use it for commuting in Boston -- a lot of people here ride road bikes, but I'm not interested in beating up my good bike on crappy pavement.
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Old 07-29-09, 11:17 AM   #3
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The FX bikes are good for commuting. I commute 25-40 miles/day on my 7.7FX. However, if I had to do it over again, I'd get a drop bar bike with disc brakes like the Trek Portland. That may be out of your price range, though.
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Old 07-29-09, 12:59 PM   #4
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I us am FX 7.2 and I love it. I am currently commuting 18 miles round trip. It did need fenders and some other things like a rack and lights. I can hit 30 miles and hour with it. I cruse at 20 on level ground. No problem off road.They are great commuters
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Old 07-30-09, 07:52 AM   #5
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I just bought a 7.3 FX last weekend. I like it a lot so far, but I have only ridden about 15 miles. I am a runner, so I bought it for cross training, but I also want to set it up for commuting. Anyone have a suggestion for an inexpensive but decent set of lights?
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Old 07-30-09, 08:35 AM   #6
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Run AK: I went the cheap route for a light my first time out too. Bought a nice flashlight and cobbled together an mount for it. Worked well enough until the flashlight broke. My wife bought me a nice light for this past Christmas for about $100. Money well spent IMO. The light is brighter than the flashlight and mounting is a snap. Should have done this first time out. Would have saved the $25+ that I spent trying to be "thrifty".

HungryScholar: As for the 7.2FX -- I really like my 7.3FX. I'm sure there are other comparable bikes out there but I don't think you can go wrong for the price. Buy it and ride as much as possible!
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Old 07-30-09, 09:00 AM   #7
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I have a 7.3FX, a great urban commuter, the frame is rigid enough for making fast starts when pulling away stoplights and stop signs, which is great on my urban combat commutes. I've decided to use my 7.3 strictly as fair weather commuter to save wear and tear on it, but that doesn't mean it can't be set up/used for foul weather, for my next foul weather commuter, my eye is on a Trek Valencia with it's disc brakes.
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Old 07-30-09, 09:23 AM   #8
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I just bought a 7.3 FX last weekend. I like it a lot so far, but I have only ridden about 15 miles. I am a runner, so I bought it for cross training, but I also want to set it up for commuting. Anyone have a suggestion for an inexpensive but decent set of lights?
It depends on your need. Are these lights for seeing a dark road with, or are they primarily to be seen by other vehicles?
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Old 07-30-09, 09:59 AM   #9
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It depends on your need. Are these lights for seeing a dark road with, or are they primarily to be seen by other vehicles?
The light that I found that works the best, is the one that does both of what you have stated.

Not having a light bright enough doesn't do much for dark roads, and is washed out in the glare of well lit streets, especially on those really foul winter commutes.
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Old 07-30-09, 11:22 AM   #10
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I us am FX 7.2 and I love it. I am currently commuting 18 miles round trip. It did need fenders and some other things like a rack and lights.
May i see a pic of the rack on the bike? what kinda rack is it?
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Old 07-30-09, 11:45 AM   #11
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I can hit 30 miles and hour with it. I cruse at 20 on level ground. No problem off road.They are great commuters
i
30 mph on a long down hill right? 20 mph on level ground is not cruising, thats hawling a$$.can you clarify these two claims?
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Old 07-30-09, 12:24 PM   #12
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i
20 mph on level ground is not cruising, thats hawling a$$.
I dunno about that. I routinely hit 25mph cranking on my XC MTB. and 23-25mph is upper end of cruise speed on my 'cross bike. I'm in good shape, but no Lance Armstrong either. I still get (occasionally) passed by roadies at that clip.
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Old 07-31-09, 03:04 AM   #13
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i
30 mph on a long down hill right? 20 mph on level ground is not cruising, thats hawling a$$.can you clarify these two claims?
That is fact there pal. 32 MPH is my best down hill and I cruise at 20 on level ground. my average is 14.5 to 15 mph. I do 20 miles 4 days a week. my normal top speed everyday is 27mph just riding without kicking it. I am in average shape for an old guy

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Old 07-31-09, 05:01 AM   #14
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Hybrids are a godawful plague. There is absolutely no reason to ever own one. Save your money and find a bike that will actually do what you want it to well, instead of buying a supposed do-it-all bike that does everything poorly. Even if you can't make up your damn mind as to what kind of riding you want to do, a 'cross bike will do everything a hybrid will, and do it better.
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Old 07-31-09, 06:56 AM   #15
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Hybrids are a godawful plague. There is absolutely no reason to ever own one. Save your money and find a bike that will actually do what you want it to well, instead of buying a supposed do-it-all bike that does everything poorly. .
I don't know what on earth you're ranting about, but a Trek 7.x does exactly what I want -- commuting -- very well. Religious wars are down the hall and to the right.
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Old 07-31-09, 07:53 AM   #16
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Religious wars are down the hall and to the right.
1+ on that one Bat. love it.
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Old 07-31-09, 09:33 AM   #17
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Hybrids are a godawful plague. There is absolutely no reason to ever own one. Save your money and find a bike that will actually do what you want it to well, instead of buying a supposed do-it-all bike that does everything poorly. Even if you can't make up your damn mind as to what kind of riding you want to do, a 'cross bike will do everything a hybrid will, and do it better.
What an odd thing to say, I do agree to buy a bike that fits your needs but why trash a bike that fits the needs of someone else. I think what ever gets you into the sport is a great thing regardless of what you ride. I love my Hybrid and most of my employees that ride run the upright hybrids. The Trec 7000 series bikes. Very comfortable bikes to ride by the way. People have different shapes, fitness levels, Hight & wt, as well as uses for there bikes. Just because it doesn't fit your lifestyle is no reason to right it off as gadawful plague. It destroys your credibility on anything you have to say about anything at all. You have no vision
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Old 07-31-09, 10:24 AM   #18
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I could be a moron for saying this but IMO Hybrids are by far the best bikes for getting around the city. I have a Trek 7.2FX and it has been nothing but a great bike. It cruises quickly, doesn't get damaged by rough roads and potholes and is comfortable to ride. I wouldn't climb mountains with it but I rarely encounter hills in the city that I can't handle easily with it. Not quite sure what the hybrid hate is about...

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Hybrids are a godawful plague. There is absolutely no reason to ever own one. Save your money and find a bike that will actually do what you want it to well, instead of buying a supposed do-it-all bike that does everything poorly. Even if you can't make up your damn mind as to what kind of riding you want to do, a 'cross bike will do everything a hybrid will, and do it better.
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