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  1. #1
    Senior Member coolio's Avatar
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    Looking for a sub 25lb urban pavement, curb dropping, commuting bike.

    Need some advice. I’m looking to buy a new/used bike that can handle my current commute. My commute is kinda varied. It’s hilly when I start then I cut across some dept store parking lots, crappy city streets to get to the subway. I’m currently riding a very heavy MTB that I put some smooth tires on. The MTB has a suspension front fork, which is great for the curb dropping I do, but going up hills is hard b/c of the weight. I’m considering a Motobecane Fly Pro ($1199) from Bikes direct and a Mongoose Crossway ($449) from Performance bike. I saw the Crossway at the store, and it felt pretty light but they didn’t have the weight for it. Both bikes have front suspensions. The Fly Pro is 22lbs according to the site. Also, aside from fixing flat tires I’m not very handy with a wrench so I’m wary of buying used. the fly pro is kinda out of my price range, but maybe someone can recommend something similar? Thanks in advance.

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/.../fly_pro_x.htm


    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...:referralID=NA

  2. #2
    Senior Member teamontherun's Avatar
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    Maybe something like this...
    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes..._20000_1500505 (cant find weight but has aluminum frame)
    http://www.performancebike.com/bikes..._20000_1500505 (29 lbs)
    Last edited by teamontherun; 01-01-10 at 09:49 PM.

  3. #3
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    All Mod Cons M_S's Avatar
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    Those bikes are functionally at opposite ends of the spectrum. The crossway is a hybrid with decent parts and nothing special. The motobecane is an XC mountain bike with high end parts. This is reflected in the price differential. With the motobecane, you are getting a very good deal on the bike/parts, but the caveat is that you have to do all of the assembly and maintenance yourself, or pay a shop to do it. No offense, but you sound like someone who is new to cycling. Frankly, the motobecane is likely overkill and I do not know if you have the knowledge to assemble it correctly. The mongoose could be ok, but would be dissappointing on a long commute (maybe more than 8 miles).

    How long is your commute?

  4. #4
    surly old man jgedwa's Avatar
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    Can't go wrong with a old unsuspended MTB and slick tires. They are cheap and easily found. And the basic platform can be taken in lots of different design directions.

    Decent frame, decent tires, maybe single chainring up front, and you can bring it in under 25 pounds easily.

    jim
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  5. #5
    Senior Member coolio's Avatar
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    Thanks for the suggestions thus far. esp. the links by teamonrun. Can you verify that they're under 25lb? I'd probably get a medium or perhaps even a small. I really like the "give" that the front suspension gives you when dropping curbs. And, an upright bike is the way to go esp. with all those cars around.

    My commute is not that long: 4.5 miles (1 way).

    As long as the bikes shifts smoothly, I don't really care about component quality. I have ridden cheap walmart bikes and those components won't work.

  6. #6
    Senior Member teamontherun's Avatar
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    sorry I totally spaced the 25lbs thing. I will get the weights and edit my post

  7. #7
    Senior Member FlatSix911's Avatar
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    Coolio, based on your commute description you would probably be better off with a Hybrid or a Mtn bike with a lockout for the front suspension...

    Take a look at these options:

    Shimano XT 27Spd Front Suspension Bike 2010 Motobecane 700HT $499.95
    New LockOut Rockshox Fork, DiscBrakes, Truvativ Cranks, Advanced Al Frame

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...700HT_2010.htm



    Shimano Deore 21Spd Comfort Bike 2010 Motobecane Jubilee Deluxe DLX $349.95
    Advanced Lockout+Adjustable Suspension Fork, Comfy Suspension Seatpost, Adjustable Stem

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/.../jub_dlx_x.htm


  8. #8
    Pedal faster not harder.
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    Cannondale Bad Boy series. Some sweet rides there. Purpose built, urban assualt commuters in evil flat black.

    http://www3.cannondale.com/bikes/10/cusa/badboy.html

  9. #9
    Senior Member tjspiel's Avatar
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    I know nothing about lockout forks. How easy/quick is it to lock them out? Is it something you can easily do while riding? If not, I don't think it would really work for the OP.

  10. #10
    Pedal faster not harder.
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    Yes most designs are quick and easy to use. On the Cannonale Headshock the lever is at the very top of the fork steerer a quick flick to turn on or off. I love mine. I give fork lockouts my highest recomendation.
    Quote Originally Posted by tjspiel View Post
    I know nothing about lockout forks. How easy/quick is it to lock them out? Is it something you can easily do while riding? If not, I don't think it would really work for the OP.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgedwa View Post
    Can't go wrong with a old unsuspended MTB and slick tires. They are cheap and easily found. And the basic platform can be taken in lots of different design directions.

    Decent frame, decent tires, maybe single chainring up front, and you can bring it in under 25 pounds easily.

    jim
    +1
    IMHO - a great suggestion. Try this with Schwalbe Big Apple tires.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Grim's Avatar
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    He is on slicks the shocks are just extra weight, maintenance and expense with very little return.

    My old M400 made commuter. Around 25lb (it is a xl frame most weights listed for bikes is Medium or large) before fenders, rack assorted other junk making it a good comuter. This is actually my foul weather/ cold weather (brifters bit of a pain in ski gloves).
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  13. #13
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    I'll admit I am gonna be a little trollish here. Why the fixation on a suspended front fork? Would not a decent pair of gloves and grips (either or both) with gel, commbined with improved technique have the same result without the weight penalty or maintenance issues?

    I don't know about anyone else here, but if I'm "curb jumping", I am either doing it really slow or going fast enough where my rear wheel touches down first. I cringe at the thought of coming down front wheel first all the time, less control.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member Kimmitt's Avatar
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    I'm not a huge fan of suspended front forks, so I'm gonna recommend the Kona Worldbike.

    http://www.konaworld.com/bike.cfm?content=worldbike

    I see unexamined people. All the time. I don't think they know they're unexamined.

  15. #15
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    ^^Worldbike?!? That's a Smoke with IGH. And that ain't a bad thing. I've got me a Smoke with 26"ers, it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  16. #16
    Senior Member teamontherun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    ^^Worldbike?!? That's a Smoke with IGH. And that ain't a bad thing. I've got me a Smoke with 26"ers, it.
    There is actually a little more thats different between the smoke and worldbike than just the drive train

  17. #17
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Yeah, I took a look at the geo specs of the Worldbike vs the Smoke. I jumped the ***, but my Smoke is the 2006 model.

    Hmm, I wonder if my wife would notice the difference between my current bike and either of these two new ones? She doesn't believe in the n+1 bike theory
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member coolio's Avatar
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    Thanks for the suggestions. I find that the front fork doesn't slow me down at all. If i brake really hard with the front brake, it does go down (compress) but that's all good. The lockout feature would probably be an "extra" that I can probably do without.

    My problem with padded gloves is that they don't do as good a job of absorbing the bumps as a suspended fork and 2) I usually misplace them or leave them in my "other" jacket pocket.

    I snooped around the bikes direct site and those 2 bikes above are right around 30lbs for the medium models. Thanks, anyway.

    Having problems getting the frame weight for some of the above bikes.

  19. #19
    Senior Member biknbrian's Avatar
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    I'm just going to add my two cents.

    Are you sure you really want front suspension for an urban, curb hopping commuter? Front suspension may not really perform well when you are standing to pedal, which you will be if you are maneuveing and hopping curbs and such. Plus I've always thought that in a way suspension tends to make handling inconsistent. Then there's the fact that eventually it will need worked on. I personnaly commute on a rigid MTB becasue I like to goof around, and if I bought a new bike the first thing to go would be the suspension fork.

    Also I'd catuion against getting to hung up on the weight issue. I used to think that weight mattered, but now I think that a few pounds doesn't really make that much difference. It's an easy way to try to judge a bike, but it doesn't alway relate to the quality, performance, or enjoyability of a bike.

  20. #20
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    weight matters. a lot. just sayin'.

    I'd get a cyclocross bike or something without a suspension fork. You REALLY don't need a suspension fork to commute. I've taken a rigid mountain bike down stuff that you probably don't think you could do without full suspension. like...staircases, 2 foot drops, rock gardens, etc.
    Quote Originally Posted by caloso View Post
    I learned this the hard way. They say that experience is the best teacher, but I would have been preferred to just read about it on the internet.

  21. #21
    i'll probably break it 91MF's Avatar
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    seems like your concerns are weight and durability, so heres just another option to mtb commuting - which i detest.

    i bought a really nice example of a early 90s cannondale on CL and had a indestructable set of wheels built. i wear a small bag and dont do rain commuting so mounts[rack/fender] were not required. 60km daily and i average 35kmh. i jump up and down curbs ruthlessly. my bike is a 60cm and weighs 23lbs with ATAC pedals, full under-saddle bag[tools, tubes, inflator], spare tyre strapped under the bag and full water bottle.

    cyclocross bikes would be a good option as well.
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  22. #22
    Older than dirt CCrew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coolio View Post
    . Can you verify that they're under 25lb? .
    25lbs is unrealistic if you're looking at Mountain bikes at a cheap price point. That's getting into high end to cut to that weight. If you're buying for weight alone, you're barking up the wrong tree. If you need to cut 5lbs go on a diet :-)

  23. #23
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    My cyclocross with 28 mm tires and carbon fork weighs 24 lb including fenders and rear rack. It tales potholes at speed but I am careful when taking curbs. If you want to save weight heep away from sus fork and discs.

  24. #24
    Bike addict, dreamer AdamDZ's Avatar
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    I like to have front suspension on my commuter. I rode rigid for a few years. You can't always react to potholes, in particular at night. I have a painful shoulder from some other incident and the front suspension does make a difference for me.

    A.

  25. #25
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    As they say - "cheap, light, strong - pick two".

    In the city commute better CroMoly road frames from 80s or more modern cyclocross will do. For curb habit I would concentrate on strong wheels. For good measure take a look at Specialized Cirrus - brand new at entry level it can be had around $700.
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