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  1. #1
    Dreaming of Touring tonytwotimes's Avatar
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    Building / Buying first utility bike. Suggestions?

    Hi,

    Looking to buy cheap non-flashy utility/commuter bike (able to take at least 2 40L ortliebs), front rack would be nice, and be able to use as a road bike unloaded. Looking to spend $200 for the bike at most (before racks). Seeking a traditional road frame for the utility bike

    I have a touring bike as my only bike right now and want something cheaper I don't have to worry about when leaving it places in town. (Motivation)

    What are 2 or 3 things I should look for in a bike when searching used classifieds for bikes?
    -Can I get everything I want into one bike or should I be looking for two bikes at slightly lower pricepoints?

    Can I put a rear rack on any steel bike? Do I need eyelets to handle heavier loads?

    Any Models of bikes that are particularly good?


    Sample bike I am looking at:
    http://www.usedvictoria.com/classifi...dbike_22729344





    Thanks in advance,
    Tony
    Last edited by tonytwotimes; 08-12-14 at 12:12 AM.
    www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/northtoinuvik [Victoria --> Inuvik; Summer '14]

  2. #2
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    You want a traditional utility bike like a Raleigh Sports.

    BD version:



    Classic three speed IGH utility bike

    Marin Bridgeway:




    Trek Allant:



  3. #3
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Writing from the company computer at work ?
    (able to take at least 2 40L ortliebs)
    Dont over think it .. get a bike .. any that will take a rear rack ..

    Ortliebs upper hooks come with 2 inserts 8mm for solid alloy rod racks

    11mm for Tubus or other racks of tubular metal.. and with no insert It's 14mm

    CDN? visit a bike shop or the bike department at MEC.

  4. #4
    Dreaming of Touring tonytwotimes's Avatar
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    what bikes will take a rear rack?



    And NormanF, I'm seeking a road bike & drop bars style of bike if possible.


    Also I feel as though I should have 26" tires. Thoughts?
    www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/northtoinuvik [Victoria --> Inuvik; Summer '14]

  5. #5
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    If you should want a drop bar bike, take a look then at bikes like Trek Crossrip, Specialized AWOL, Salsa Vaya, Surly Straggler and Jamis Bosanova. Giant Anyroad and GT Edge.

    Bikes that have drop bars and fall between the touring bike and road bike category. The country/adventure bike that comes with rack braze-ons, disc brakes and the ability to accept wider tires and fenders. They do cost, more though.

    And Surly makes its Straggler in both 26" and 650B for smaller riders.

  6. #6
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    I know you said you want a traditional road bike frame, but are you adverse to getting an older steel rigid mountain bike off of craigslist? It fulfills your sub $200 and non-flashy requirement. Some models to consider are 80s to mid 90s Trek 800-900 series, Giant Iguana, KHS Montanas, Specialized Rock hoppers/stumpjumpers. When I look for commuter/utility bikes, I personally look for cro-moly/Reynolds frame material, fork and rear eyelets to mount racks and 3-piece crankset (just to get an idea of whether or not it's low-end/middle line if I don't know the brand and model off-hand). It should be easy to find any old rigid mtb with rear eyelets. I use Wald rear twin baskets (535 model I think) and have loaded lots of weight. Think 12 packs of energy drinks on either side, 3-4 2 liter sodas, and whatever I can fit on top. It's wobbly when loaded that much, but holds fine. Anyways, it's an option to consider if you don't mind looking like a homeless guy.

  7. #7
    Senior Member squirtdad's Avatar
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    What you should look for is early to late 80's Japanese bike.

    Brands like Nishiki, Univega, Bridgestone, centurion, panasonic. Most will have eyelets for racks. Wheels will be 27 (more limited tire selection) or 700.

    you get a strong, simple (friction shifters) drop bar bike.

    you don't need 26 wheels unless you are carrying huge loads.

    you can attach a rack without eyelets. one trick is to attache the bottom of the rack to the triangle hole in the rear drop out.....will post a pic later
    '82 Nishiski commuter/utility
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  8. #8
    Senior Member gregjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iseemoneey View Post
    I use Wald rear twin baskets (535 model I think) and have loaded lots of weight. Think 12 packs of energy drinks on either side, 3-4 2 liter sodas, and whatever I can fit on top. It's wobbly when loaded that much, but holds fine.
    I have two rear Wald folding baskets and I was getting the wobbly feeling when loaded as you describe. I add a front basket and put a 2ltr bottle up there as a counterbalance. Works great for a more secure feeling.
    Updated K2 pics 9/10/14
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  9. #9
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    A road frame for a loaded utility bike?
    But low cost for less worry from theft...
    Chuck the road bike aspect because your use is UTILITY. Your touring bike is your road bike.

    Schwinn Varsity with new 700c wheels then urban makeover.
    Any old mtn bike with long wheelbase.
    Think cheap with heavy chain.
    Last edited by LeeG; 08-28-14 at 09:10 PM.

  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    what bikes will take a rear rack?
    why not go look at the ones in shops? many will .
    You look for mounting holes at the rear dropout, and further up, along the seat stay .

  11. #11
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    Not a light road bike.

    Old steel MTBs and early hybrid bikes make a suitable commuter, having stout frames to carry a load at speed.

  12. #12
    Velocommuter Commando Sirrus Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
    If you should want a drop bar bike, take a look then at bikes like Trek Crossrip, Specialized AWOL, Salsa Vaya, Surly Straggler and Jamis Bosanova. Giant Anyroad and GT Edge.

    Bikes that have drop bars and fall between the touring bike and road bike category. The country/adventure bike that comes with rack braze-ons, disc brakes and the ability to accept wider tires and fenders. They do cost, more though.

    And Surly makes its Straggler in both 26" and 650B for smaller riders.
    If I could do it over again and narrow it down to one do-it-all bike I'd go with a drop bar bike with a high bar with a shallow bend (120mm drop 70mm reach Orign 8) that puts the bar ends at the level of the top tube. Why? I found that this geometry is more comfortable for a long distance day to day commuter than a traditional deep drop classic road bike. The bike that closest resembles this over the counter is the Awol Specialized Bicycle Components. I got there by putting said bar on a '07 Sirrus; however, drive train and brakes took a little re-engineering to make the package work. The '07 was geared with a compact triple that doesn't work with any of shimano road derailleurs (You need an IRD Alpina D) plus travel agents for the brakes (Pull ratios are off on the brifters compared to what the stock linear pulls require). In theory you could switch to mini-v's but what I've heard it's comparable to the travel agents..
    Riding 19 Years of Specialized Sirrus Tradition.
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  13. #13
    Velocommuter Commando Sirrus Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NormanF View Post
    If you should want a drop bar bike, take a look then at bikes like Trek Crossrip, Specialized AWOL, Salsa Vaya, Surly Straggler and Jamis Bosanova. Giant Anyroad and GT Edge.

    Bikes that have drop bars and fall between the touring bike and road bike category. The country/adventure bike that comes with rack braze-ons, disc brakes and the ability to accept wider tires and fenders. They do cost, more though.

    And Surly makes its Straggler in both 26" and 650B for smaller riders.
    If I could do it over again and narrow it down to one do-it-all bike I'd go with a drop bar bike with a high bar with a shallow bend (120mm drop 70mm reach Orign 8) that puts the bar ends at the level of the top tube. Why? I found that this geometry is more comfortable for a long distance day to day commuter than a traditional deep drop classic road bike. The bike that closest resembles this over the counter is the Awol Specialized Bicycle Components. I got there by putting said bar on a '07 Sirrus; however, drive train and brakes took a little re-engineering to make the package work. The '07 was geared with a compact triple that doesn't work with any of shimano road derailleurs (You need an IRD Alpina D) plus travel agents for the brakes (Pull ratios are off on the brifters compared to what the stock linear pulls require). In theory you could switch to mini-v's but what I've heard it's comparable to the travel agents..
    Riding 19 Years of Specialized Sirrus Tradition.
    Live in Houston? Come to http://bicyclecommutehouston.blogspot.com/
    1988 Specialized Sirrus, 1989 Alpine Monitor Pass MTB, 2007 Specialized Sirrus 700C hybrid, 2007 Schwinn Town & Country trike, 1970 "Resto-Improved" Raleigh 20, 1970 "WIP" Raleigh 20, and 1980 "WIP" Schwinn Town & Country trike

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