I have been into mountain biking for a while and use to use my mtb to commute to school. I just won a brand new 2009 Jamis Sputnik in a raffle. I'm stoked about it. The SS was a challenge the first few days on some of the hills, but I'm zipping pretty good now. I have been using the Sputnik as a commuter (5 miles each way). I love reading about everyone commuting by bike to work and just want to be one of those guys.
I'm use to mountain biking and being able to ride over anything I want, but I realize these skinny wheels and tires are a bit fragile. I was cruising downhill the other day coming up on a place in the sidewalk that I know had a raised block of cement. A person got in my way and distracted my and I hit that raised cement pretty good--double pinch flat.
I've seen a lot of talk about the Surly Cross Checks. I hadn't considered a Cyclocross before, but it seems like a good idea. There are a lot of dirt trails around and I like being able to ride in the grass for a second or off a curb if need be. Do you think I could just pop some cyclo style wheels and tires on this bad boy? Thoughts? Recommendations?
I added a mirror as everyone has recommended. Other than that, she's bones stock. I've been reading all over these forums like a madman and think i've picked up some of the general commuting concerns. Any thoughts or suggestions for this bike? I really like its style, but might need a bit more toughness/usability.