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Old 07-05-09, 01:50 PM   #1
GalopoGus
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Need a Bike for College

Looking to get a good bike that looks good (my price range is around $500). The atmosphere of the college is a town (just about all the traveling around campus I will do is under 2 miles) and the cars aren't exceeding 30 mph and the traffic is mild.

I was thinking of getting this cruiser bike http://tinyurl.com/qnvrh2
The only problem is that it does not have hand brakes, which makes slowing down and stopping a bit more difficult.

The difference with me is that bikes don't get stolen at my college. We have a very very very low crime rate and while I'm not going to get a $2000 bike and leave it outside, I think one around $500 will be completely safe with a lock

Any suggestions regarding the bike I should be looking for

Last edited by GalopoGus; 07-05-09 at 02:13 PM.
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Old 07-05-09, 02:04 PM   #2
geo8rge
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lots of posts on college bikes. I would suggest checking craigslist and other students to see what is available used. Consider a folding bike.
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Old 07-05-09, 03:31 PM   #3
Panthers007
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You can get a decent hybrid for $500. They are good on roads and on dirt and gravel trails. Jack-of-most-trades bikes. And they are just plain fun.
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Old 07-05-09, 04:58 PM   #4
subclavius
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Quote:
The difference with me is that bikes don't get stolen at my college.
Did the college tell you that? Because colleges are normally targets for bike thieves, both on and off campus.

Quote:
The only problem is that it does not have hand brakes, which makes slowing down and stopping a bit more difficult.
I built two custom cruisers for my niece and nephew to use at college, both are single speed coaster brake bikes with no handbrakes. This is so there are no gear or brake cables for some drunken frat boy or football player to yank off the bike when it's parked outside. Plus, they are at schools which are flat so they won't be flying downhill anywhere. A rear brake of any type isn't going to stop as efficiently as a front hand brake in most situations, but you can certainly stop the rear tire and put down one heck of a skid with most coaster brakes. In other words, they work sufficiently in most cases.

The gears and quality/type of brakes needed will depend on the campus terrain. More hills = more gears and better brakes.

The hybrid is a good all-round solution, and you can find decent ones for $500 or so. Something like the Trek 7.2 or Schwinn World GS (not as good as the Trek quality-wise, but which has things a student would need like fenders, a rear rack, and a chain guard so your pants don't get grease on them). But if you're only going 2 miles at a pop, maybe even a sport comfort bike would work. They have really relaxed rider positions and fatter tires for a smoother ride. They're often a 3 or 7 speed which is great for shorter flat rides, a hybrid is usually for longer rides and you might be paying for things you won't need for such a casual outing. Examples of sport comforts would be the Nirve Starliner, Schwinn Alloy DX, or Trek Navigator (sorry, I just got back from looking at some Treks earlier today).

The nice thing about a hybrid is that it might come in handy after graduation, and the extra flexibility will allow the bike to meet a greater range of needs. I'm still using my college/grad school MTB bike from ten years ago, and I'm nowhere near a mountain. It's just a style of bike which can be adapted to most needs, although it won't be as efficient as a purpose-built bike.

Last edited by subclavius; 07-05-09 at 05:19 PM.
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