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Old 03-08-11, 11:41 PM   #1
byekguy
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Commuter and Century Hybrid

I'm looking for a bike that I will be using mostly for commuting purposes on a daily basis, but that I can also use on Century mile rides for recreational use. So far I've been looking at steel framed bicycles like the Surly Pacer and the Kona ***** Tonk. They are very comfortable compared to the aluminum bikes I've tried and are also in my price range. Also, I don't have any intentions on carrying loads besides myself and a back pack.

Are any of these good choices?

What sort of things should I be looking for considering my needs.
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Old 03-09-11, 07:10 AM   #2
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I've heard good things about the ***** Tonk, and I love my Kona Dr. Dew. The ***** Tonk has braze-ons for mounting a rack for when you decide you need to carry some stuff after all (a change of clothes if nothing else). It looks like the Pacer lacks them.
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Old 03-09-11, 07:38 AM   #3
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I'm really digging the Raleigh Port Townsend.
http://www.raleighusa.com/bikes/stee...t-townsend-11/



I'm too lazy to look up and compare this bike to the others you listed but it meets your criteria and it's sexy.

As far as what to look for-
• Relaxed frame geometry. If you're just pedaling to work or in the saddle for 100+ miles you don't want or need aggressive race geometry.
• Big tires = Better ride and less flats.
• Depending on where you ride, simplicity can be nice (eg. bar end shifters which almost never break as opposed to integrated brake lever shifters which can ruin a ride when they malfunction)
• Ability to run fenders. Unless you are strictly a fair-weather rider, fenders can make a wet ride a lot more pleasant.
• Ability to run a rack (or in the case of the raleigh I posted, a beefy handlebar bag might work). I suspect you'll quickly tire of wearing a backpack while riding.
• Minimum of 2 bottle cage mounts, (3 being preferred). I've never been on a long ride in the middle of nowhere and thought "I wish I hadn't brought so much water" but the opposite has happened many times.

I hope this helps.
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Old 03-10-11, 10:31 PM   #4
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Thanks HandsomeRyan, these sound like very good tips and that Raleigh bike is very nice. I'm not quite sure about fenders yet. I might need to carry the bike up and down stairs frequently and would like to keep the weight to a minimum. Thanks Again.
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Old 03-10-11, 10:50 PM   #5
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I like the look of the ***** Tonk too. You're right about the braze-ons I think I'm gonna need or want those at some point. Thanks Arcanum.
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Old 03-10-11, 11:41 PM   #6
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My bike has bar-end shifters, but as far as I was aware, the advantage to them is lower cost.

What you should look for: Something fun to ride. I say this because just about any bike can be used for what you're describing. I've ridden centuries on my Worksman cruiser, for example. So if anything will work, go for something fun.

(By the way, I wouldn't expect lower-end steel bikes to be especially light, fenders or no.)

On the centuries, if you do charity rides, where they have rest stops every 10 miles, you don't need to tote much of anything along. If you're doing riding on your own, a rack comes in handy for assorted junk, including addtional water bottles in the hot and extra clothing in the cold.
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Old 03-11-11, 12:46 PM   #7
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YOu can do century rides on anything you want unless you're trying to hop a paceline -- and even if, if they're your friends who don't commute every day and have your endurance. I have a Trek 7500Fx adn it's Aluminum -- it's fine for a century, though multi-day rides it's a hard-bouncing bear so I take my Xtracycle Gian Nutra. Focus on your commuting needs, I would say.
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Old 03-11-11, 04:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geonz View Post
Focus on your commuting needs, I would say.
My thoughts too. I don't do centuries (at least not in one day), but have gone up to 40miles in a day. My experience is that what I needed for my commute I needed for that too plus more water and snacks.
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