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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 05-31-12, 08:30 PM   #1
psy
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New and seeking advice.

First off ,hello all from northern cal,been lurking for awhile and really like the forum.

Anyway,Im looking to start biking to work.Its a short commute, about 5 miles each way over fairly flat ground,part of which (about a mile) is over a hard packed gravel road.Im 5-10 and about 225.

So Ive been shopping bikes for a couple weeks, and Im leaning towards getting a Marin Muirwoods 29er.Its $699 at rei.I like it cause it has a more or less upright riding position,I can add a rack/fenders and it has a steel frame.Is there any reason this is a bad choice for me?Any suggestions for something in a similar price range would be appreciated.

TIA
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Old 05-31-12, 08:43 PM   #2
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I haven't ridden that bike myself, but it does get good reviews & looks like a fine bike for your uses. The only downside mentioned in the reviews is that it rides a bit heavy, but with 20% of your commute over gravel, it's probably worth the trade-off.

I'm sure you'll get more informed opinions over the next few days, but definitely post back here with what you wind up getting & how you like it.
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Old 05-31-12, 08:47 PM   #3
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Welcome To Bike Forums, Psy!

I think that the Marin Muirwoods 29er is a great choice for a commuter. That's especially if you're buying it at REI, because of their 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you become a member and something goes South with your bike, say six years from now, you don't even need a receipt in order to either get a full refund, or an exchange.

At REI's current price of $700, the Muirwoods 29er just can't be beat!

Good Luck!

PS.

At your height, you might even enjoy the Muirwoods 26er, as well!

The Marin Muirwoods 26er ~ $630
www.marinbikes.com/2012/bikes/specs.php?serialnum=2207

* Try them both just to be sure of the optimum comfort level.

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-01-12 at 05:54 AM.
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Old 06-01-12, 01:39 AM   #4
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There are a couple of points that make the Muirwoods 29er less than ideal.
1. Excessive clearance for 29er offroad tyres. The fork crown, where you bolt the front fender, is a long way from the tyres, esp if you fit a std 32mm commuter tyre. Normal fenders just wont work very well and those MTB style clip-on fenders never work well. The same seems to be true at the rear.
This kind of clearance is good if you are building a winter, snowy weather commuter but less good for an everyday/rainy commuter.

2. Rear disc brake is in the wrong position. The seatstay is the normal MTB position but this interferes with the fitting of rack and fenders. There are hacks and work-arounds but you are better off selecting a brake mounted onto the chainstay. Scott hybrid bikes often use the chainstay mounts as do other brands.
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Old 06-01-12, 09:47 AM   #5
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I didnt have too much problem with installing fenders on mine (PB touring fenders) and did trial fit a rack not made for disc just for fun too. I just had to bow the stays out a bit by hand around the back disc brake and put a 1/2" spacer down at the front behind the BB to to keep the space to tire even all around as one does to most bikes. And i made up a simple extension to mount the front fender to the fork crown. Not pretty but it worked well. However i dont use a rack and i normally dont have fenders on. But rode it enough this way to know it works.
Its a very smooth riding bike almost or about as smooth as my LHT. I find my size which is the largest you can get at 22", has a longer wheelbase than the LHT and i can really stretch out on it.
Its good off road,(although its not a single track bike one can go slow and get through)quite stable,not the most nimble but then i like a tank. I cut down the bars fron 680 to 560,but its all about preference. I cant ride most bikes hands free like i used to be able to when i was younger,but i can with the Muirwoods. It is definitely built tough.
You can PM or email me if you have any more questions.
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Old 06-01-12, 04:49 PM   #6
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I really appreciate the input guys.I'm gonna head to REI tonight and test drive a few bikes and see how they feel.I know there are also several LBS's in my area and maybe I'll check some of those out too,anyone perchance live in the East Bay Area around Concord/Walnut creek got a recomendation for a good LBS?

Thanks again guys....I'll definitely post a pic of what I end up with, and I'm sure I'll be picking your brains on what I should upgrade first ..lol
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