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  1. #1
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    College Commuter SS / FG Suggestion

    Hey guys, I'm a college student and I just moved off campus, so I'm thinking about getting a new bike for commuting to and from class. My apartment is about 3 blocks from campus, and it's totally flat, not a hill in sight. I've seen a lot of guys on campus with fixed gear bikes, and I like the simplicity and look of them. I'm not looking to spend a lot of money, and I don't really want to build up my own, and I won't be riding more than a few miles a day, so it's not like I'm going to be rough on the components. What do you guys suggest for a good, low price bike for a light commuter?

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    Price range please.

  3. #3
    poop.
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    bikesdirect.com

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    curmudgeon psirue's Avatar
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    3 blocks is a commute? I think I would hate that - give me at least 3 miles.

    as for your question, there are a million threads on this topic. I'd check those out. I also recommend a frame that will accommodate a rear rack. If your main goal is to commute to school (carry books) and not ride more than a few miles as well as keep the cost low, I'd build up a conversion, buy some new wheels, wider & durable tires, rear rack & fenders.

  5. #5
    * adriano's Avatar
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    i wouldnt ride a three block commute.

  6. #6
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    I wouldnt take a bike worth very much to campus. Stuff is always getting ganked there. Make sure to get a top tube pad. I know at my UF they repaint the damn bike lock places every semester with really soft pain that rubs off on your frame.

    I was looking at these Gavin bikes on ebay the other day. Looked legit.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by adriano View Post
    i wouldnt ride a three block commute.
    Thanks for staying on topic.

    Let's put the budget at $500 max. I wouldn't use a basket, and I don't like the look of fenders. If it's that wet, I'd probably skip biking and just walk to class. All I'm looking for is a simple ss / fixed gear that isn't way expensive.

  8. #8
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    Dawest SST. I got this bike to commute from school to home as well as groceries shopping. Fun, easy to ride. Has the option of SS/FG. Decent components. And a decent wheelset. $320 shipped. Comes with 2 brakes for just in case moments.

  9. #9
    Senior Member steveymcdubs's Avatar
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    if youre spending 320, might as well just get a kilo

  10. #10
    curmudgeon psirue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A~Bomb View Post
    Thanks for staying on topic.

    Let's put the budget at $500 max. I wouldn't use a basket, and I don't like the look of fenders. If it's that wet, I'd probably skip biking and just walk to class. All I'm looking for is a simple ss / fixed gear that isn't way expensive.
    who said anything about a basket?

    so, in other words, you want to be cool like the other fixed-gear riders you see -- not commute, not ride more than 3 miles, not ride if the weather is a little bad, not ride enough that your components wear down. got it.

    well, then, forget what I wrote and buy the fashion bike that will make you new friends.

  11. #11
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    seconded on the SST. I ride one its a good intro to the SS/FG world and it wont break the bank. and you can always upgrade if you become more into the riding aspect.

  12. #12
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    I am a college student and take it from me, do not ride a nice bike to school and leave it locked for more than a couple minutes. However, you can find a nice, light old steel lugged from and do a killer conversion for less than 500 easy. Bikeisland.com has some very budget minded wheel sets and for all other stuff Ebay is always good and your lbs also is a good place to start. What college are you at?

  13. #13
    "Real" Member sanderswm's Avatar
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    Honestly? For a 3 block commute on flat roads only during fair weather, it really doesn't matter what you have. Check craigslist for a beater bike, clean it up and add some new grip tape, and you're set. If you plan on riding more than that around campus and such, put more money into a craigslist or ebay search, or pick up a Kilo.

  14. #14
    chickenosaurus j3ffr3y's Avatar
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    or maybe motobecane messenger? I like the look of that over the SST.
    2010 Motobecane Team Track
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by psirue View Post
    who said anything about a basket?

    so, in other words, you want to be cool like the other fixed-gear riders you see -- not commute, not ride more than 3 miles, not ride if the weather is a little bad, not ride enough that your components wear down. got it.

    well, then, forget what I wrote and buy the fashion bike that will make you new friends.
    You're right, I won't ride if the weather is bad, and I won't beat the crap out of the bike either. But I'm not buying a fixed gear because I want to look cool or impress people. I just want a good quality bike that doesn't cost a fortune, and i just happened to want a fixed gear.

  16. #16
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    id say get a kilo if you really dont want to build something or look around too much
    but you should scan ebay and craigslist or go check out the lbs in the area

  17. #17
    mediocre member djeucalyptus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by operator View Post
    This is the internet dude. You're free to be an asshat.

  18. #18
    Ouch... my knees. 7daysaweek's Avatar
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    I commute on a fuji track. Cost me ~$300. No complaints.
    Oh noes....

  19. #19
    dsh
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    Quote Originally Posted by djeucalyptus View Post
    A~bomb:
    One of those Republic Bikes from urbanoutfitters would probably be perfect for you. If you're riding it 3 blocks on nice dry days with no hills, it'll be plenty of bike. Plus, it looks nice.

    A lot of people on this forum will give you **** about being a trendster or something, and one of those urbanoutfitters bikes certainly won't give you internet cred, but it really is a good choice for someone like you.


    Just a tip though:
    If you get this bike, the hardcore hipster faux-messengers on campus will not respect you. They're a bit of a joke amongst people who pretend to know a lot about bikes, this forum included. I know you'll say you don't care, and that very well may be true, but I'm just putting it out there. If you care about that kind of stuff, just get a KiloTT and say you're doing it because it has better components and tubing. There's nothing wrong with that.
    Last edited by dsh; 07-17-09 at 10:26 AM.

  20. #20
    Non-Spandex Commuter jdmitch's Avatar
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    For 3 blocks to your main location, any sub $500 new fixed / free is going to be fine.

    Republic would be fun
    Kilo would be good (for < $500 shipped you can afford the Pro, even)

    Heck, anything from BD would be fine.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KitN View Post
    You don't need to dress up like a spandex super hero to ride your bike.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsh View Post
    A~bomb:
    One of those Republic Bikes from urbanoutfitters would probably be perfect for you. If you're riding it 3 blocks on nice dry days with no hills, it'll be plenty of bike. Plus, it looks nice.

    A lot of people on this forum will give you **** about being a trendster or something, and one of those urbanoutfitters bikes certainly won't give you internet cred, but it really is a good choice for someone like you.


    Just a tip though:
    If you get this bike, the hardcore hipster faux-messengers on campus will not respect you. They're a bit of a joke amongst people who pretend to know a lot about bikes, this forum included. I know you'll say you don't care, and that very well may be true, but I'm just putting it out there. If you care about that kind of stuff, just get a KiloTT and say you're doing it because it has better components and tubing. There's nothing wrong with that.
    I've checked out the Republics already, and I like the amount of customization for the price. I'm not looking for respect, and I know some of the hardcore guys can be real d-bags when it comes to stuff like that. At this point, I think I have it narrowed down to either the Republic or a Kilo TT. I'll have to get a front break for the Kilo, but that's not a big deal. There are a lot of drivers and pedestrians who don't know how to deal with cyclists on my campus, so I think a front brake is good to have just in case.

  22. #22
    chickenosaurus j3ffr3y's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A~Bomb View Post
    I've checked out the Republics already, and I like the amount of customization for the price. I'm not looking for respect, and I know some of the hardcore guys can be real d-bags when it comes to stuff like that. At this point, I think I have it narrowed down to either the Republic or a Kilo TT. I'll have to get a front break for the Kilo, but that's not a big deal. There are a lot of drivers and pedestrians who don't know how to deal with cyclists on my campus, so I think a front brake is good to have just in case.
    get a coaster brake. and promenade bars.
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  23. #23
    Senior Member Yellowbeard's Avatar
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    If you're gonna buy a new bike, don't choose it based on a 3 block "commute." It could have no tires and it would be good enough for that. If you want a new bike, use some criteria that'll actually make it worthwhile, for instance, a fun 10 miles around town or something.
    A bike that cost more than a mediocre lock would be wasted on that distance, considering the risk of leaving it locked up on campus.
    I'll eat it first.

  24. #24
    Senior Member robotkiller's Avatar
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    Have you looked into IRO?

    I bet you will end up riding more than a few miles a day. When I was commuting in college, I would typically ride anywhere from 5-15 miles a day. And I lived one block away from the school. It's addicting.

    Get a good lock too.

  25. #25
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    For short distances, get a kick scooter like this one I have:

    http://www.xootr.com/kick-scooter_mg.html

    Speed-wise, riding these is like fast jogging.

    You can fold it up and take it with you into class or onto a bus or subway.

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