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Utility Cycling Want to haul groceries, beer, maybe even your kids? You don't have to live car free to put your bike to use as a workhorse. Here's the place to share and learn about the bicycle as a utility vehicle.

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Old 06-09-11, 06:50 PM   #176
syncro87
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I actually had to ride it home about 4 miles from the shop. I don't have my rack setup on my car, and it was so long it wouldn't fit in my Saturn SW or Mazda5. So, I rode home. The only wrinkle in this plan was that I was only able to get to the bike shop 5 min before they closed. So, the normal time where they would have set the bike up for me was not there. I rode it home as is. Of course, this was the one time I had no tools in my car since I had taken my tool bag out to put struts on the Saturn a few days before--so couldn't remove the non-quick release front wheel to fit it in the car/van, nor could I raise the seat up properly. I had to ride home with the bike adjusted for someone about 6 inches shorter than me. Not the greatest setup. I had my 18 mo old with me, my wife met me at the shop to take her, and I rode the bike home. lol. It was a circus.
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Old 06-09-11, 07:26 PM   #177
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If anyone has specific questions, let me know. I'll do my best to answer or take a digital photo closeup of any area you're interested in. The bike isn't perfect, but it's a bargain when you look at price paid to utility ratio.
What is the seat to pedal measurement with the seat at it's safest maximum height?

Aaron
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Old 06-09-11, 07:49 PM   #178
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What is the seat to pedal measurement with the seat at it's safest maximum height?

Aaron
I will measure it for you tomorrow. How much of the seat post in the tube do you consider safe? Are the posts marked somehow, I assume?
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Old 06-09-11, 08:14 PM   #179
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I will measure it for you tomorrow. How much of the seat post in the tube do you consider safe? Are the posts marked somehow, I assume?
Most seatposts are marked, yes.
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Old 06-09-11, 09:16 PM   #180
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Most seatposts are marked, yes.
That's what I thought. I'll check tomorrow. I would also assume, perhaps incorrectly, that if the stock seatpost did not allow enough adjustment, one could cheaply retrofit one of a different length. But I'll get you the stock max travel.
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Old 06-10-11, 04:08 AM   #181
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Thanks syncro87,

Yes seat posts are usually marked. The reason I am asking is I have a long legs and most one sized fits all bikes...don't. My wife is just over a foot shorter than I am with short legs and between the two of us we usually fall outside the extremes of one sized frames.

You can get longer seat posts but that isn't always a good solution. I have actually had a frame crack from the stress put on it by the longer post (at least that is what it looked like at the time)

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Old 06-10-11, 05:32 AM   #182
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Thanks syncro87,

Yes seat posts are usually marked. The reason I am asking is I have a long legs and most one sized fits all bikes...don't. My wife is just over a foot shorter than I am with short legs and between the two of us we usually fall outside the extremes of one sized frames.

You can get longer seat posts but that isn't always a good solution. I have actually had a frame crack from the stress put on it by the longer post (at least that is what it looked like at the time)

Aaron
Ok, I'm sure there is a proper way to measure this but I don't know what it is, so I did it two ways for you.

I did indeed find the mark on the seat post. I then inserted the seatpost about another 1/4 inch in just to err on the conservative side.

First measurement I took was perpendicular to the floor, not at an angle following the seat tube. With the pedal at 6 o clock, in other words max distance from the seat, the height from pedal to seat top was just over 36", say 36 1/4".

Second measurement was from the center of the center of the bottom bracket to the top of the seat, following the tube at an angle rather than perpendicular to the ground. This measurement was right around 32, give or take a tiny fraction.

Let me know if you need anything else. I'm an amateur, and can do most anything on a car but am not yet familiar with working on bikes, so I'm not the best with bike tech yet.

BTW, crank arms look to be about 7.5" from the attachment bolt to the end of the arm, so your legs would actually have a little more room at max extension than my seat to bottom bracket measurement.

Last edited by syncro87; 06-10-11 at 05:36 AM.
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Old 06-10-11, 04:23 PM   #183
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Thanks Syncro,

Normally I measure in a straight line basically following the seat tube, but I think what you gave me is close enough. I suspect the bike is going to be right on the edge of fitting without too much trouble.

I am not in the market for a cargo bike, yet, but I wasn't in the market for the last two I bought either.

Aaron
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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 06-10-11, 05:45 PM   #184
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Thanks for tanking the plunge and sharing your experience synchro87, and congrats on your new bike! The pics look great, I have a much better idea of what this bike is about now.
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Old 06-10-11, 07:53 PM   #185
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I hope they make this bike for more than a year or two... it looks fantastic, and the price cannot be beat for what it is. I may still end up getting one eventually!
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Old 06-11-11, 07:22 AM   #186
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Ok, that's how I measured my second measurement, right along the seat tube from the center of the bottom bracket to the top of the seat. 32. Add 7.5 for the crank length.
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Old 06-11-11, 07:46 AM   #187
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Ok, that's how I measured my second measurement, right along the seat tube from the center of the bottom bracket to the top of the seat. 32. Add 7.5 for the crank length.
That definitely would work. My typical pedal to saddle length is around 38.5" plus or minus a bit....yep I have looooong legs.

Aaron
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ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

"Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
_Nicodemus

"Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 06-14-11, 04:53 PM   #188
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Congrats Syncro! The Sun really is a handsome bike.

A couple of things,is there side loaders available as an option,I assume since your Sun isn't showing any they must not come stock?

Are you outfitting yours with Xtracycle accessories,simply curious.

I'm having a ball on my Yuba,I cant get over how easy it rides and coast for a longtail. Good luck.

PS- I may have to talk the wifey into her own Sun bike.
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Old 06-14-11, 10:31 PM   #189
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Mine arrived today - so far so good! Though I've only ridden it back from the bike shop, and not under load. A couple notes:

As mentioned, the integrated rack will not take an Xtracycle snapdeck or flight deck. But the thing just lifts out and you can just install the standard Xtracycle v-racks and use the entire accessory set. Right now mine is rocking v-racks, freeloaders, snapdeck, magic carpet, and stoker bar. (Will post pictures tomorrow). If you wanted to go bargain style you could just get the hoodie and you're good to go.

As others have noted, the componentry is crummy. cheap crankset, gearing, and brakes. Ultimately i'll end up upgrading them, but they're fine for now. Rides nicely, big fat tires, steering is light.
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Old 06-15-11, 05:30 AM   #190
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Is anyone in my area? I really want to try it. I'll ask my LBS if they'd consider carrying it.
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Old 06-15-11, 10:42 AM   #191
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Here are some pictures of it with the various xtracycle components on it. One thing to note is that the bike comes with 50% of the bosses necessary to tie down the freeloader bags using the "new" xtracycle hardware. In other words, the back of the bike has them (as shown in one of the pics) but the forward tube does not. Ooops! So you'll need the retrofit kit from xtracycle.
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Old 06-16-11, 06:11 PM   #192
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Thank you for the pics of the farkled bikes. I just ordered my P-racks and PeaPod/deck/etc kit today. Can't wait.
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Old 06-17-11, 10:44 AM   #193
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That thing is awesome.
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Old 06-25-11, 10:02 PM   #194
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Some additional information about why this bike rules, from one of the designers, at

http://clevercycles.com/2011/06/02/sun-atlas-cargo/

My wife is a convert to it, after hauling our kids around. The bike is very stable.
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Old 06-30-11, 08:12 PM   #195
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syncro or wnpublic (or anyone else who has this bike) -- Can you tell me the standover measurement? (meaning the distance from the ground to the lowest point on the frame you could get a foot through to mount?). I currently ride an xtra free-radical on a mountainbike type frame (see here: http://carfreecambridge.com/wp-conte...e1df437a74.jpg), and getting on and off with two kids loaded on the back is a challenge. I'd love a more step-through option and like the looks (and price) of the Sun, but I can't quite tell if it would actually be lower than what we already have. Also any thoughts on how it would ride for someone pretty short? (my wife is 5' 1" -- I'm 5' 4" so I do a bit better than she does on one-size-fits-all frames)

I found this thread from a post on the rootsradicals list. It's nice to have some first hand reports on this bike!

Thanks all,
DVC
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Old 06-30-11, 08:53 PM   #196
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Have you tried swinging your leg over the handlebars? It's not for everyone, but it works for me, and I'm NOT what you would call nimble.

I'm still waiting for reports of this bike after a good bit of use!
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Old 07-01-11, 10:59 AM   #197
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syncro or wnpublic (or anyone else who has this bike) -- Can you tell me the standover measurement? (meaning the distance from the ground to the lowest point on the frame you could get a foot through to mount?). I currently ride an xtra free-radical on a mountainbike type frame (see here: http://carfreecambridge.com/wp-conte...e1df437a74.jpg), and getting on and off with two kids loaded on the back is a challenge. I'd love a more step-through option and like the looks (and price) of the Sun, but I can't quite tell if it would actually be lower than what we already have. Also any thoughts on how it would ride for someone pretty short? (my wife is 5' 1" -- I'm 5' 4" so I do a bit better than she does on one-size-fits-all frames)

I found this thread from a post on the rootsradicals list. It's nice to have some first hand reports on this bike!

Thanks all,
DVC
Hey - so from the ground to the top part of the pronounced "X" in the pictures (the lowest point of the top of the bike) is just over 24 inches - say 24 1/4. With kickstand up, it is just over 25 inches. Pretty low. I can't tell you for sure about how someone 5' 1" would do, but as people have noted, it is very easy to ride - the tires are very wide and feels very stable. My wife, who is 5' 7" and a casual bike rider has no problems with it and really loves it. The seat post could go a lot lower... Hope this helps.

Will
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Old 07-01-11, 12:52 PM   #198
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@tom -- I don't think either of us is flexible enough to put a leg over the handlebars!

@will -- thanks for the measurement. We just went outside and measured against ours at and ~24" would be a significant improvement. Also thinking through some possibilities for other step through frames.

Thanks again,
dvc
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Old 07-01-11, 01:52 PM   #199
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Some additional information about why this bike rules, from one of the designers, at

http://clevercycles.com/2011/06/02/sun-atlas-cargo/

My wife is a convert to it, after hauling our kids around. The bike is very stable.
This is a good read, and I'd like to quote:

Quote:
With the light steering, you can have 2 happily screaming and squirming kids on the back and ride one handed. It must be ridden to be believed. I would like to give a big thanks to Jan Heine for his research into geometric and pnumatic trail which helped us understand what cargo bikes need. This bike should even ride nice with a frame mounted front rack or basket.
Jan Heine is the editor of Bicycle Quarterly, and in the Spring 2011 edition he had an unfavorable review of the Surly BD. One of the comments was the wheel flop, and he suggested the geometry of a longtail should be the same as a tandem. So if Atlas took his advice, this is perhaps the best handling longtail on the market!
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Old 07-01-11, 07:49 PM   #200
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@tom -- I don't think either of us is flexible enough to put a leg over the handlebars!
Its not really any harder than the saddle, most of the time.
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