Hey all! I'm looking to get into commuting via bike to and from work. It's been a while since I last owned a bike (mountain bike), but aside from that I'm just generally confused on what might best suit me. My commute is about 3 miles one way on roads that are fairly maintained, but hilly. On top of that, I recently discovered that my g/f and I would like to take a bike path from our home to the beach (about 11 miles one way and hilly coming back).
The main difference I can see is the tires at 700x40 vs. 26x1.95. I don't want to go on very rough trails, but I'd like to have the option of using an equestrian trail if a bike path isn't available. Would either of these bikes work for what I want to do and which would do it better? Thanks in advance!
I don't know anything about either bike, but from the descriptions, they're fairly low-end. For the kind of riding you describe, I'd consider a used mountain bike, something like a Specialized Hard Rock or Bridgestone MB3 or MB5, from the '80s or '90s. They're sturdy, you can get parts and they're decent to ride. There's a huge assortment of tires for them, from high pressure road slicks to wide knobbies. I did my first century, 20 years ago, on an MB-3 with Ritchey Quad tires. Around here you can find them in thrift shops, in neglected but good condition, for $30 to $70 or so.
That bike will work for your purpose, but it's not great for the money. I read the Costco member magazine article last year when they introduced their line of bikes to be carried at retail locations. These are of reasonable quality - but they're not optimal for anything, certainly not for what you've described. You don't need the triple chainring, and don't need the suspension parts.
I agree with above post. At your price point, the cushy seat, suspension seatpost, and front shock are of minimal utility and add weight. A better choice would be a non-suspension hybrid or early mountain bike. Lower cost, more durable components, lighter weight.
What shows up on Craigslist in your area under search "Trek hybrid" or "Univega hybrid"?
Last edited by Phil_gretz; 07-13-12 at 01:06 PM.
Reason: added Costco comments