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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 09-05-09, 04:25 PM   #1
white_feather
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3 bike maximum dilemna

The SO and I live in a two bedroom apartment. I am car-free 42 years now and will be for the remainder of my life, GOD willing. As you can imagine, there is limited space so I need to keep it to three bikes. I ride everyday year round regardless of the weather. I do bring my bikes indoor but at work i have to leave it outside but I could cover it up in bad weather. Give me your ideas for three bikes you'd like to have if limited to that number and had to ride at least one in rotten weather and possibly a second one if the first one was unrepairable before going to work. Price is not really my aim here but I would like to keep it realistic.

Last edited by chipcom; 09-08-09 at 10:28 AM. Reason: replaced offensive term
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Old 09-05-09, 04:27 PM   #2
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I don't see the problem. I have a one bedroom apartment with 5 bikes.
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Old 09-05-09, 04:30 PM   #3
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...Surly Crosscheck
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Old 09-05-09, 04:30 PM   #4
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My personal 3 would be:

1. Nice, fun light road bike.
2. Well built touring bike. The work horse.
3. Hard Tail mountain bike.

Either throw a rack on the hard tail or get a good backpack for the emergency situations.
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Old 09-05-09, 04:32 PM   #5
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Get rid of her. More room for bikes. Hookers are a lot cheaper.
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Old 09-05-09, 04:36 PM   #6
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Hard to choose but I'll try...





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Old 09-05-09, 04:51 PM   #7
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If you're gung-ho enough to be car-free, ride year-round in rain, sleet, snow, etc., you probably know the answer. Look deep inside yourself and the right bikes will come to you when you are ready.

Otherwise, I'd suggest a light road/touring bike for quality riding and an ugly but solid and road-friendly hybrid for commuting, local riding, and some light off-road trails. The third one can be your choice, depending on whether you're into mountain biking or not. If you aren't, I'd suggest getting a cheaper but solid road bike you can use as a backup for either of the first two.
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Old 09-05-09, 04:53 PM   #8
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One Hardtail MTB this is your worst weather bike, get some fenders, and maybe a spare wheelset with slicks.

One hybrid (700c) and one cyclocross bike. Both with fenders, and matching dropout spacing so one spare wheelset will work with both, the spare wheelset would have cross tires on it, while normally both would wear road or commuter tires.

This should give you the most possible options, with bad and fair weather tires for all three bikes, fenders to deal with whatever, and the minimum number of spare parts taking up space.

I would recommend putting tubeweenies on the hubs of each wheelset, so you always have matching tubes no matter what wheelset you're running. Racks or whatever luggage you use needs to be able to be thrown from one bike to the next with minimal work (I use a Carradice SQR series, and just adding a bracket on each seatpost would allow my entire commuter bag to go from one bike to the next in about 11 seconds.)
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Old 09-05-09, 05:10 PM   #9
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What's your worst weather? And how much of it do you get?

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Old 09-05-09, 05:15 PM   #10
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I have 7 bikes but in reality if I had to do it all with one I could. Perhaps a simple commuter for emergencies but my all purpose bike is a converted 90's mountain bike with wide gearing, good lighting, and good racks and fenders/mudflaps. Can't go wrong with that. All of my other bikes are essentially toys.
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Old 09-05-09, 05:17 PM   #11
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I think about this a lot as although I do not have a lack of space and do have some 17 bikes and play the, "what if I could only have one bike" game as it lest me focus on what I consider to be a bike's most important traits.

I like my all rounders and my white Trek 7500 is all of that... it has a second wheelset with cross tyres that get fitted up for winter and off road riding.

The blue Kuwahara has a sister that is almost identical frame wise and I could actually run two wheel sets on on one frame here also...the sister is a slightly nicer frame and I use it for everything from commuting to utility rides, and long distance rides.



I love my 1955 Raleigh Lenton (fixed gear) and although I have a prettier 1957 Peugeot PLX8 it does not thrill me quite as much as that old Raleigh which comes with a nice local history.

If I had no bikes and could only have three I'd have a bike like my Trek for a primary commuter, a fixed gear bike like my Kuwahara for winter riding, and something that was practical and yet fun to ride like my Lenton.
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Old 09-05-09, 05:44 PM   #12
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Right now I have a Trek 730 that I painted Rustoleum green, sprinkled it with green aquarium sand and let it dry. The next day I painted it again and let it dry. It is almost like a sandpaper finish. I put my new 1lesscar stickers back on. I put different bars on it, took off the front reraileur and the rear brake. It also has a rack on it as well. I now have a cool 1X7 bike for everyday driving.
Bike #2: I have a Kona Eighty-Eight comfort bike as my neighborhood cruiser and it's also the MILF-mobile. It is stock except for a front wicker basket I zip-tied on.
Bike #3: I am looking to fill this spot. In my inventory I have a 1955 Schwinn Deluxe Racer beat up but original. I have a 1977 Free Spirit girls bike that I am parting out. I have a Columbia Charger 10-speed that is in good condition but too small for me so I may sell it or part it out. I have a 1964 Monark that I would like to make into a vintage looking board track racer and figure out how to hang it on the wall as art, but still ride it too so then I wouldn't have to count it. I just had a 1963 Huffy stolen that I loved and wanted to turn it into the board racer, nut it's gone.
My son actually found the 55 Schwinn so it's his BUT my birthday is coming up so I may get it as a gift, then I can't get rid of it so I may have to go to four bikes.
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Old 09-05-09, 06:25 PM   #13
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I have four bikes in one room of the house. I use a 1995 Schwinn edge for a commuter/winter bike.
I use a modified giant boulder for touring. I have 1971 Raleigh super course for my road bike. My fourth bike is a 1995 Giant Yukon waiting for a make over with touring components. If I had to choose a single bike, it would be my giant boulder. It can be use as a commuter, tourer, and trail bike.
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Old 09-05-09, 07:23 PM   #14
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...Surly Crosscheck
+1000

I might want a winter beater (any old ATB will do) for really lousy conditions depending on where you live.
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Old 09-05-09, 08:16 PM   #15
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If I had to pick three (a luxury for me, since I have ONE and have to make it do for all I do), they would be:

My FS/AM bike for play;
Santa Cruz Chameleon, switchable between SS and geared if needed;
Ibis Ripley/Castellano Fango softail for the beater.

Durability and sturdiness come before speed for me.
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Old 09-05-09, 10:29 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by white_feather View Post
The MILF and I live in a two bedroom apartment. I am car-free 42 years now and will be for the remainder of my life, GOD willing. As you can imagine, there is limited space so I need to keep it to three bikes. I ride everyday year round regardless of the weather. I do bring my bikes indoor but at work i have to leave it outside but I could cover it up in bad weather.(highly recommended ) Give me your ideas for three bikes you'd like to have if limited to that number and had to ride at least one in rotten weather and possibly a second one if the first one was unrepairable before going to work. Price is not really my aim here but I would like to keep it realistic.
Depending on terrain I'd have a 'commutered out' CX w/a double cr w/bags, rack, lights, etc. for utilitarian purposes. A roadbike w/a seatpost rack/trunk bag combo w/lights, blinkies, etc. And a singlespeed/fixed gear for light commuting and recreational rides. If commuting swap the seatpost rack/trunkbag/blinkie, etc depending on which 'fastbike' you're using. Equip each w/as many accessories as posible to avoid 'swapping out' as it gets to be a pain.

This is exactly the combo I use on a regular basis.
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Old 09-05-09, 11:24 PM   #17
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In extremis, ditch the wife and keep the bikes. If you have to really choose!
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Old 09-06-09, 01:37 AM   #18
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i'm in the same boat: 3 bikes max (that can be kept indoors). i have a lightweight roadie for fast/long group rides, a fixed gear for training/recovery/group rides, and a folding bike for commuting (to be fitted with fenders and rack). the roadie/fixie overlap a bit in function but they are so different and i can't decide one way or the other so i kept them both. i also would like to add a mountain bike for XC trail riding but space/money are restraints.
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Old 09-06-09, 01:38 AM   #19
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I'm a spokesman for SOB (save old bikes). So I say, save a bike, ride the milf.
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Old 09-06-09, 04:36 AM   #20
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In addition to the 3, you could also keep a huge pile of dissembled bikes and bike parts in the garage, basement or, if necessary, the living room...like a lot of us do.

If she questions it, just explain that it's not technically a bike unless it's complete and rideable.
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Old 09-06-09, 10:38 AM   #21
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I only have one bike so having to "narrow" it to 3 seems like heaven to me.

Anyway if I had my picks I'd have:

A light, fast road bike for day rides

A fixie just because the riding style is different and I like variety

A touring bike that I could also use for commuting
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Old 09-06-09, 03:22 PM   #22
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1. Fast no speed compromise road bike eg Look 585 or Cervelo S2
2. Tour bike with rack and fender support eg Tricross or Trek Portland
3. Hardtail MTB eg Specialized Rockhopper Comp
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Old 09-06-09, 03:26 PM   #23
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If you are in Ohio you can get some pretty nasty winters I'd imagine. I think a touring bike like the LHT would be a nice all arounder. You can attach racks and fenders as well as fit some pretty wide tires if needed. Plus it is designed to carry loads since you are carefree.

As a backup a good hardtail mountain bike should work nicely. Throw some slicks on there and it can be a pretty quick and agile commuter. Keep the knobbies on if you plan on doing some offroading.

The third option is the hardest. A roadbike would be nice for faster rides. I also like the idea of a folding bike so maybe you can bring it into work. I think some of us would like to have your problem.
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Old 09-06-09, 03:48 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by DallasSoxFan View Post
My personal 3 would be:

1. Nice, fun light road bike.
2. Well built touring bike. The work horse.
3. Hard Tail mountain bike.

Either throw a rack on the hard tail or get a good backpack for the emergency situations.
This is basically what I've got.
1. Scattante CFR Race
2. Surly Crosscheck (the commuter)
3. Schwinn Homegrown (oldest bike in the stable, ~2000, may get rid of it for lack of trails and time)
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Old 09-06-09, 04:15 PM   #25
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I've got 3 bikes I plan to keep:
1. Sears 3-Speed with Fenders, rack, Wald Baskets, and lights
2. Sanwa Classic Road Bike
3. Trek 8000 SLR
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