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  1. #1
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    Moving - ship Xtracycle or try something new?

    Right now, I'm in Anchorage. I'm going to be moving to New Orleans soon for college.
    Anchorage is cold and hilly; NO is flat and humid.

    When I needed a utility bike here, in 2008, I bought an Xtracycle and mounted it on the back of a heavy steel MTB frame. I needed the wide range of gears, so I swapped out the innermost front ring for an even smaller ring for hill climbing. The use of the standard 26" tires allowed me to use Nokian studded tires. The bike runs great! It's also very heavy and big. I have to carry it up stairs and I doubt it would fit in an elevator. Also, I can't put it on a bus bike rack. It's just too long.

    Pro:
    Standard tires - use standard ice studs (but in Louisiana, I doubt i'm going to need Nokians!)
    Carry lots of stuff
    Rides well as my main bike
    Wide gear ratio for hills (which I think are not such an issue in New Orleans as they are here in the mountains)

    Con:
    Can't load on public transit
    Odd length
    Heavy, will be a bit spendy to ship crosscountry

    So i'm contemplating selling my old trusty steed before I move, and getting a new cargo bike when I get there! Specifically, I was contemplating a Worksman LGB/LGG. A bit warily, as i've never actually seen one, nor do I know if it would work well for regular commuting and generally riding everywhere and every day. in fact, if I need a bus trip, I have a conversion recumbent which can be a bit of a pain and is also heavy.
    The hope would be that it would be easier to load on a bus or into things like bike lockers. I don't have the experience with the bike in question to know how well it works for everyday use.
    I'm open to other ideas if anyone knows of something even better, too.
    Current stable: Sun Atlas X-type (mine), Trek Navigator 3 (wife), two Sun Revolution cruisers (wife, daughter)

  2. #2
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    If I were you, I would consider removing the Xtracycle from the mountain bike, selling the bike to someone up there, and shipping just the Freeradical and pieces down here. You can pick up another nice bike (lighter and more suited to N.O.) and put the Freerad on it. You can shop around the bike shops here, and maybe score a deal on something nice. There's always roadies going through their spring cleaning sales. The only downside would be if it costs more than the freerad is worth to ship it.

    You shouldn't have too much trouble getting around with it, and I don't think I've ever seen a bike locker anywhere in the city (if somebody knows different, let me know!) You might be able to get by with a regular bike and panniers, but depending on your apartment situation when you get here, I'd consider keeping the Xtracycle.

  3. #3
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    Mr. Funky has the right idea. Also those Worksman bikes are very awesome, and USA made if that is a factor for you. Being in N'awlins, you'd likely have no problem pedaling one of those heavy Worksmans since its so flat, and if it gets tough, just think how much stronger you're getting pushing that thing around. If you go the Worksman route, I'd say you could have plenty of hauling room with the Industrial Newsboy with all those Wald baskets all over it. On that note, you could go down there and buy a used bike and buy your own Wald baskets/racks and probably save money. Then again if you ship just the freeradical from your current bike, you would have the X down there and be able to put it on any kind of bike you like.

    Apologies for the rambling, possibly incoherent, non-answer above. Thinking through my fingers. I'd go with Funkystickman's plan and ship the Xtra down there and find a used bike. I love my Xtracycle.

  4. #4
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Keep the Xtra - it's very versatile. You can always add it to a new donor bike as Fstickman suggests.
    safe riding - Vik
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  5. #5
    Senior Member tpelle's Avatar
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    So are you ever going to return to Alaska? If so, why get rid of the Xtracycle rig? Just find a friend or family member who will store it for you and get another bike to ride in N'Orleans.

    Not sure what your requirements are for a bike for down there, but I just bought one of these http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...e_xi_steel.htm for $299.95. It was my first BD purchase and I was pleasantly surprised, and for a bike for a college kid who's going car-free just add a rack and some Wald folding baskets, a rear blinkie and a headlight, and you'd be set! You can probably just strip the lights, plus your frame pump and flat-fixing stuff, off of the Xtracycle and bring it down with you.

    Maybe I'm not fully understanding your requirements, but I think a Worksman may be overkill. Admittedly my only experience with the type are the three-wheel utility bikes used in large factories for the maintenance department, but I don't know that I'd want to ride one of those tanks in the gulf coast heat and humidity!
    Last edited by tpelle; 04-01-11 at 09:04 AM.
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  6. #6
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    Honestly it's doubtful that i'm returning. I'm going for a PhD - that's 3-6 years of school, usually 5 - then, i'm going to be jobhunting academia. The chances that Alaska will A: create a program in my field in the face of budget woes and B: decide to hire a new professor in said program *in my specialty* C: at the exact time that I start looking for work is not particularly high. It'd be nice if they did, but it's realistically not likely.
    I'm a clyde; I barely notice bike weight. I ride on the X mounted on a heavy steel frame for my everyday rides; I notice the difference between studs and slicks, but I usually end up hauling stuff around anyways.
    My experiences tend to be thus: Me and my wife go riding. My wife has asthma and is an athena, so I have been needing to go a bit slower than I can, which is occasionally frustrating. We ride around within a few miles of the apartment and take pictures and the like.
    Oops, we need to stop somewhere that we just remembered since we stumbled across it. Oh and while we're here we need a case of thisandsuch to put in the freezer. Oh, since we're here we should pick up a load of these bulky things. Oh and then we might need to haul a stack of books and laptops around all day appropriate to two students.. My cargo hauling needs have tended to be random and unpredictable.
    Then the next day, hey, if we throw the bikes on the bus we can go out to the movies at the value theatre across town. Except that when we get out of the movie the buses won't be running so we'll need to ride back. And then we'll just carry the bikes up the narrow stairway to the apartment, and we have to park inside.

    So - Standard bike size (Inability to use public transit is approaching dealbreaker status), everyday useable (and this is modified by 'where we are' which in this case will be 'a big flat city that doesn't have ice'), standard size for storage, no special prep or extra parts that i'll have to carry around with me separate from the bike to convert to a hauler.
    Last edited by JusticeZero; 04-01-11 at 11:57 AM.
    Current stable: Sun Atlas X-type (mine), Trek Navigator 3 (wife), two Sun Revolution cruisers (wife, daughter)

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by JusticeZero View Post
    Honestly it's doubtful that i'm returning. I'm going for a PhD - that's 3-6 years of school, usually 5 - then, i'm going to be jobhunting academia. The chances that Alaska will A: create a program in my field in the face of budget woes and B: decide to hire a new professor in said program *in my specialty* C: at the exact time that I start looking for work is not particularly high. It'd be nice if they did, but it's realistically not likely.
    I'm a clyde; I barely notice bike weight. I ride on the X mounted on a heavy steel frame for my everyday rides; I notice the difference between studs and slicks, but I usually end up hauling stuff around anyways.
    My experiences tend to be thus: Me and my wife go riding. My wife has asthma and is an athena, so I have been needing to go a bit slower than I can, which is occasionally frustrating. We ride around within a few miles of the apartment and take pictures and the like.
    Oops, we need to stop somewhere that we just remembered since we stumbled across it. Oh and while we're here we need a case of thisandsuch to put in the freezer. Oh, since we're here we should pick up a load of these bulky things. Oh and then we might need to haul a stack of books and laptops around all day appropriate to two students.. My cargo hauling needs have tended to be random and unpredictable.
    Then the next day, hey, if we throw the bikes on the bus we can go out to the movies at the value theatre across town. Except that when we get out of the movie the buses won't be running so we'll need to ride back. And then we'll just carry the bikes up the narrow stairway to the apartment, and we have to park inside.

    So - Standard bike size (Inability to use public transit is approaching dealbreaker status), everyday useable (and this is modified by 'where we are' which in this case will be 'a big flat city that doesn't have ice'), standard size for storage, no special prep or extra parts that i'll have to carry around with me separate from the bike to convert to a hauler.

    Make it single speed & only run a front brake/disc since N'awlins is flat & you dont ride far due to wifes condition it shouldnt be a problem if you gear it right

    Then Get the Quick disconect kit from Xtracycle & a regular sized chain so your not seperating chains all the time & walaa, regular bike when you want it, Cargo when you need it.
    Last edited by FatBaldMen; 04-01-11 at 12:53 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    or make it a fixie lol...w/ the quick disconnect kit & carry a short chain, I carry tools w/ me but in the event of a major catastrophe I can disconnect the freerad, load the bike onto a rack & carry the freerad into the bus w/ me, all in all it takes about 15 min.


    http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g4...3/IMG_3675.jpg

  9. #9
    Senior Member tpelle's Avatar
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    Well then, another option is a touring bike. I weigh around 245 - 250, and I ride a Surly Long Haul Trucker. Great bike, good load hauler, but still fits the "form factor" of a typical road bike, so it will fit in a public-transportation (i.e. front of a bus) bike rack.
    Steel Club = BF-STL-00064

  10. #10
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    Get a 20" bike. Easy to take on public transport, plenty loading capacity. Easy to take innside the apartment if needed.
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  11. #11
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    What do you mean by a 20" bike? Like one of the trick bikes I see people slouching around on all the time looking like they've stolen their bike from a grade schooler with their knees by their ears, you mean? Or something different?
    Current stable: Sun Atlas X-type (mine), Trek Navigator 3 (wife), two Sun Revolution cruisers (wife, daughter)

  12. #12
    On a Mission from God FunkyStickman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JusticeZero View Post
    What do you mean by a 20" bike? Like one of the trick bikes I see people slouching around on all the time looking like they've stolen their bike from a grade schooler with their knees by their ears, you mean? Or something different?
    I think they're talking about a 20" MiniVelo, or folding bike... either one would be ultra-portable.

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