Hello! I'm interested in buying a commuter bicycle for my commute to and fro university. While the dealer initially recommended the Jamis Commuter, I've come to learn that there is also a Commuter 2 available. I can't seem to find any information on the differences between the two options. The official website doesn't seem to be much help to a novice bicycle buyer like myself. Perhaps some learned cyclists could help me out?
I had Jamis 3 commuter, it had a 8 speed nexus hub gear, put snow tires on it for my winter commuter. The bike worked quite well. If I recall the difference among the models was level of components, 1 & 2 models were deraileur geared. If it worked so well, probably want to know why I sold it - got a huge passion for another ride and I was offered more for it (slightly tweaked from new) than it cost me; so I had some additional cash for n+1.
2013 Surly Crosscheck, 1990 Specialized Sirrus, 199x Schwinn police bike
That's a nice-looking setup! I don't see anything about the 2 that looks like an important improvement over the 1. It's three pounds lighter, but that doesn't mean much when you weigh 1xx pounds and you're carrying books and stuff. The derailleur is different, but the derailleur on the 1 can work fine, and you could upgrade if you wanted for very little money. The rims on the 2 are different, but the wheels on both have 36 stainless steel spokes, so when they're trued up well you should have no problems. I vote for the 1. I also recommend two good panniers. That will set you back another $100, but it's WELL worth it.
Remember to bring it back to the shop when the brakes start to rub and/or the shifting gets funky. Those are easy, quick tuneups, and they'll get it rolling like new again.
I'd cut my losses on a high theft college campus. If your landscape is mostly flat, then opt for the Schwinn single speed from Nashbar @ $275. Otherwise, I'd get the Schwinn Slicker from Nashbar. I'd totally skip Jamis on this one. If you don't need a rack, then get the Nekkid Bull single speed @ $250 from Nashbar.
Not wanting to confuse anyone here, but please keep in mind that there are sub-versions of the Commuter series, such as my 2013 Commuter 1 XmS which has a three speed Nexus internal gear hub, and peculiarly comes without the standard rear rack which is found throughout the Commuter series.
Aside from the difference in the drive-train components, I can honestly say that for it's price, the Commuter 1 has proven itself in the last 8 months with daily 18+ mile commutes, and a few longer rides up to around 30 miles, this hauling my bulky 275 lbs torso along with 10-15 lbs of stuff in the pannier which is significantly more on Mondays and Fridays (work clothes!).
So far, the only thing I had to change on the bike was the rims & spokes since the original single walled Alex R1000's never really failed but kept on needing trueing and were definitely not built for my weight. It's also about time to change the original brake pads since the Tektro pads weren't that great to begin with.
If you decide to get a Commuter, I highly recommend seeing one up close since the bike I got (lightly used) had a slightly smaller frame, even though on paper it was a supposed to be a good fit.
Feel free to ask or send a PM if you need any additional info.
the difference looks like a parts upgrade from the 1 to 2. That is not uncommon.... weight difference is probably in better wheels and some lighter parts here and there... it does add up. The 1 is a common steel frame while the 2 has an aluminum frame.... the steel will absorb the road shock a bit more.
I have a 2013 Jamis Commuter 3. My particular model comes with a 7-speed IGH, which is fantastic for my city commute. There are at least 4 current Jamis Commuter models, and they change things somewhat from year to year, so look around and check model and year on their website, too.
I like my Commuter 3; it is my #1 bike. I have almost 1600 miles on it. I've replaced the fenders (stock were aluminum, which sheared at a bracket support) and the seatpost clamp (which I broke), plus added a Brooks saddle. And I'm a big guy, like Telly (above), riding potholed city streets, so this bike gets its work in. Everything else has been solid, and I really like the bike's geometry and feel. Good bike.
Rivendell Sam Hillborne, Brompton S/M3L (modified)
If I had to choose between the two I wold choose the Commuter 2. Though I love steel for a frame material, there would would be no way I would pick straight guage Hi-Tensile steel over a lighter aluminum frame. The 32 mm tires will soak up any road shock, so it will be comfortable to ride. It also has slightly better components and it looks nicer to my eye.