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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 06-03-12, 10:07 AM   #1
Vanicent
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Another new commuter looking for recommendations/advice

Hello all, I just recently discovered your forums while doing research on a bike purchase. I live just over 5 miles from work (moved closer to have the option of ditching my car) and have access to a bike trail (paved) that takes me directly to work. It's been a few years since I've ridden a bike and never replaced my last one after it got stolen. I've settled on a hybrid type so that I would still have the option of dirt/gravel trails as well on the weekends if I so chose. I'm looking at two different options at this point:

Diamondback Menona
http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/pr...uctId=12225173

Specialized Crosstrail Disc
http://centercycle.com/product/12spe...c-105413-1.htm

I'd like to stick to a bike with disc brakes, from what I understand they handle wet/muddy conditions much better than vbrake, and I like the look to be honest. Between those two I know the Specialized has much better components, I am a bit leery of the the lower end parts on the menona, though the price is nicer. So I guess this is more to confirm that the specialized is worth the extra money?

I plan to bike commute as much as possible, rain doesn't bother me at all (I live in the northwest and honestly like the rain) but what kind of things should I do to protect my bike from the elements? It will be parked outside unfortunately on company property, I don't think I'll get permission to keep it inside.
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Old 06-03-12, 10:15 AM   #2
BikinPotter
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Have you ridden either of the bikes? Most important, after budget considerations, is how the bike feels/fits.
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Old 06-03-12, 01:06 PM   #3
Vanicent
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I've tested them both, and didn't like the seat on the diamondback, but that's easily enough dealt with I wasn't going to let it be a deal breaker. The specialized shifted better, well felt smoother that is but that could have just been an adjustment issue I think, I'm not knowledgeable enough to be sure. They're both within my budget, my real concern was durability of the components and whether or not there would be a huge issue such as the either one of them rusting out on me or something. (In the derailleur or braking systems that is)
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Old 06-03-12, 01:29 PM   #4
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Welcome To Bike Forms, Vanicent!

What exactly is the upper limit of your budget?

If you live where it rains frequently you'll be better off with an aluminum framed bicycle at your current price point. Since aluminum doesn't rust, you'll have no worries there.

You shouldn't really aim for a suspended front fork, unless you intend to do some serious mountain biking. Either that, or you have really rough and rocky dirt trails, with roots popping up everywhere. Hybrids can handle the average unpaved country dirt trail just fine. They don't mind the occasional rock, root, or pothole, either. However, they are primarily built for paved and unpaved roads. Therefore, your occasional dirt/gravel road trips won't be a real challenge to a hybrid with a rigid fork. If you want decent disc brakes, you're gonna have to pay extra.

The best hybrid deal on the planet right now is currently happening online at performancebike.com with Fuji Absolute 2.0.

The Fuji Absolute 2.0 ~ $600
www.performancebike.com/bikes/Product_10052_10551_1118664_-1_400316_400316

The best hybrid deals in steel are with the Jamis Coda Series.

The Jamis Coda Sport ~ $560
www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/street/coda/12_codasport_bk.html

Of course, the ideal hybrid steel is realized in the Jamis Coda Comp.

The Jamis Coda Comp ~ $775
www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/street/coda/12_codacomp.html

The Jamis Coda Elite ~ $1050
www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/street/coda/12_codaelite.html


Good Luck!

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-03-12 at 03:00 PM.
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Old 06-03-12, 01:48 PM   #5
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I just started commuting a similar distance to work last month. You will love it! Even better that you have a bike path to use - I am on urban streets for the majority of my ride. It is the best way to start and end the work day. Good luck with the bike choice, I don't have enough experience to help with that. Get a rear rack and a bag for it, they are great for commuting.
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Old 06-03-12, 02:26 PM   #6
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Giant Escape is the best bike value in the business, especially for commuting. Forget suspension bikes unless you plane to get airborne.
http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-us/....1/8910/48613/
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Old 06-03-12, 02:36 PM   #7
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Thank you for the recommendations! I'll take a look over those other models you mentioned, am hoping to find one at a LBS if at all possible. I would like to be able to do some trail riding with the bike as well, have a group of coworkers that do that pretty regularly, but I'll have to look more into putting discs on myself possibly and consider a rigid fork as well. My budget is up to $650, don't really want to spend much more than that till I have gotten more experience and a better understanding of what I want/need. More than likely this one will eventually turn into my backup/messing around on the weekends bike.
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Old 06-03-12, 02:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vanicent View Post
Thank you for the recommendations! I'll take a look over those other models you mentioned, am hoping to find one at a LBS if at all possible. I would like to be able to do some trail riding with the bike as well, have a group of coworkers that do that pretty regularly, but I'll have to look more into putting discs on myself possibly and consider a rigid fork as well. My budget is up to $650, don't really want to spend much more than that till I have gotten more experience and a better understanding of what I want/need. More than likely this one will eventually turn into my backup/messing around on the weekends bike.
What bikes do your LBS sell?

On what type of terrain do you guys ride the trails?

I mean, do your trials consist of a bunch of roots, rocks, and crevices?

Do they ride on HT MTN bikes?

PS.

HT = hard tail

* If want a suspended fork, just get a decent entry level HT MTB!

Last edited by SlimRider; 06-03-12 at 03:02 PM.
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Old 06-21-12, 09:12 PM   #9
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I want to thank you all again for your suggestions, after much though about what I really wanted to do with the bike I found myself really more inclined to road riding, and ended up purchasing a Diamondback Podium 2 which felt perfect (aside from the saddle...which I'll fix lol) and I got at a great price. Later on down the road if I decide I want to look into trail riding and such then I'll get a bike specifically for that.
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Old 06-21-12, 09:39 PM   #10
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Damn, came to the party too late. You get that DB from Dick's? Don't know about your local one, but mine doesn't do service after the sale. So you're stuck doing your own wrenching...
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